Saturday, November 17, 2012

The Howling Wind - A Dead Galaxy Mirrored in an Ice Mirage

The Howling Wind
"Antarctica’s dynamic ice processes are always working to erode the possibilities of a seemingly stable form of accounting for geographical space. Wråkberg argues, ‘The slow pace of Antarctic exploration as a whole also indicated that there might be more to this than just adjusting field practices developed elsewhere to extreme polar conditions. The grand geographic project of the nineteenth-century Western culture seemed to have struck difficulties of a more profound nature in its encounter with the vast ice mass in the far south’. What this Antarctic excess suggests is that there are entropic forces at work within the making of all maps. The hallucinatory capacity of landscape phenomena, such as the mirage, works to re-inscribe the very notions of geographical fact within these processes of accounting for spaces. As vision sagged under the weight of ‘snow’, this formlessness demanded a new order of knowing and observation, and a new order of knower that could contend with how the landscape was realised through speculation . . . Antarctica constitutes a privileged site for critical thinking about vision and its relationship to the establishment of geographical truths. Wilkes did not know how to map the mirage because his predisposition to novel forms of unknowing precluded that possibility. This did not make the mirage any less ‘real,’ but it did make the possibility of its understanding that much more distant. The mirage, while seemingly illusory, emerges from real conditions and real contradictions within vision. It is illusory only to the extent that it did not fit within the
way Wilkes delineated and mapped territory, but it did open up new climates of sight that eventually expanded the visual knowledge of the Antarctic region. The mirage is dialectically linked to our perception of the real, to a geographical form from which we establish normalising strategies. This dialectic suggests that these phantom displacements are not opposed to perception, but an extended quality of the state of perception, of an altered perception specific to place. This suggests that investigating the conditions of unknowing holds potential for geographical thought. As Antarctica provided an awkward terminus to a trajectory of nineteenth-century geography, it also suggested most clearly ‘openings’ to other kinds of geographical knowledges that acknowledge the dialectic relationship of vision to blindness and unknowing." (Kathryn Yusoff, "Climates of Sight Mistaken Visibilities, Mirages and ‘Seeing Beyond’ in Antarctica," in High Places).

Aluk Todolo - Occult Rock

Aluk Todolo
"In Tana Toraja, the idea of the to manurun, mythical beings who descended from the heavens on mountain tops and became local rulers, may have been borrowed from the Bugis . . . Toraja tomanurun are always paired with an equally supernatural spouse, a woman who rose out of a river pool" (Roxana Waterson, "The Contested Landscapes of Myth and History in Tana Toraja," in The Poetic Power of Place: Comparative Perspectives on Austronesian Ideas of Locality, ed. James Fox [ANU E Press, 1997]).  

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Sapthuran - Astigan Se Beorg


Astigan Se Beorg (Journey up the Mountain)

He continued his journey
With eyes fixed upon the mountain
Soon he would reach its base
Soon he would ascend its slopes
The winds began to blow
The warm breeze turned to ice
It's bite invigorated his spirit
As he walked onward
The pain turned steeply upward
He struggled to to traverse the incline
The air grew thin
A faint snow began to fall
And he stepped out upon its apex
Looking over the forests below
He stood atop the highest mountain
And, finally, he was alone
Here he learned true peace
And he vowed never to descend

Never to return to the world

"But the third death, by which this Soul died, no one living grasps except the one on the mountain" (Marguerite Porte, Mirror of Simple Souls, Love speaking).

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Panopticon - Killing the Giants as They Sleep

We wept as we passed through the mountains clothed in July clouds, 
under the restraint of power lines, their fury bursting through the summer haze as ethereal music filled the air.
Nearly conquered by the mountain, I have found such deep respect for what you destroy.
Older than time and cut down by a lesser foe, like thieves in the night mined for coal.
Timeless stone buried beneath, unearthing the secret poisons into its belly…
You hack at the mountain and scrape away for your simple need what was formed by silent gods on the day the void first burst with sound.
Pulsing with life, you don't see its shimmering green.
You see the deeps hue of coal, grey smoke and black waters in the stream…
Poison the earth, poison the stream, killing the weary giants as they sleep, blackened waters, sand and soot-grinding gears halt serenity.
Panopticon, "Killing the Giants as They Sleep," Kentucky (2012)

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Bergthron - Autarktis

The throne of mountains - how can it be reached? Breathless, only with ropes or rather by meditating in your head, thus ascending?

Better fetch up a mask for breathing;
better cover your body;
better test your muscles before
heading towards the bergthron.

Pretenders have often been rebuked and fallen great depths.
The mountain sent you a warning, so prepare yourself.

Bergthron on the journey to Autarktis, the Anti Arctic in autonomy. Leaving Ragnarök behind.

Wie definiert man Gott,
auf dem Gipfel der Welt?
Wo ist das Leben,
wenn man nach unten blickt?
Wie definiert man Gott,
wenn man den Himmel
mit einer Hand berührt?
Wohin weht der Geist,
wenn man zwischen zwei
Welten steht?
Hinauf zu den lichten Göttern,
oder hinab ins finst're Tal,
dort, wo die Menschen hausen?
Eine Expedition in das höchste Land,
durch unwegsames Gelände,
über steinige Pfade...

...der höchste Berg ist nicht zu steil.
Nicht zu steil, um zu fallen,
zu fallen, tief in sich hinein,
tief hinein ins eigne Sein,
tief zu sich selbst herab.
Kalt ist es auf jedem Gipfel,
gefahrvoll und stürmisch, eisig und steil.
Ohne Gefühl ... alle Sinne taub.
Augen ohne Licht,
Ohren ohne Resonanz,
Worte ohne Klang.
Ob Tag, ob Nacht,
ob Gott, Berg oder Mensch.
Hier, auf dem Gipfel der Welt.
Hier, ist alles Eins!

(c) 2010 by Bergthron

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Digging into stone (III)

We lacked entertainment up here at 3,000 meters altitude. One of our engineers had brought a deck of cards with him yet I’ve already grown sick of all these parties playing cards. The guy even started to read horoscopes from the cards as he was mumbling something about gypsies while defining the number 8 in combination with a queen of hearts. He was clicking with his tongue every time he realized a new meaning disclosed under his very eyes. This was happening every two evenings in a small tent intended to cover one half of our small expedition. I decided to change tents after the first evening. 
In the other tent I read books dealing with the problem of metal materials in the mountains. We all know that gold is to be found deep below in the galleries. They started in ancient times to dig for the gold in the stones. Some in the US combed the rivers, but let’s focus on the mountains. So while I was reading this book on the Art of Gold Digging, at 3,000 meters above sea level, thinking or rather blackdreaming of men wearing sharp hats on their heads and digging with shovels into loose stone to uncover gold, I understood that bergmetal maybe only existed in my head. All of a sudden my heart muscles cramped and the chambers threatened to narrow. Dangerously narrow. I screamed of angst. Has the whole expedition only started its doleful course because of a crazy idea of mine? My heart pushed hard against the skin. Can we really find bergmetal or just a material I had mistaken for it? Only because I want to find it, my fingers should feel the touch of cold bergmetal. 

Anne Burgess [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

The tasty muffy smells of stones when I arranged them for my grandparents to acknowledge my first demonstrations of natural history. I used a room under the rooftop for installing a museum of geology and paleontology, temporarily. There were fossils and minerals, besides stones from Icelandic volcanoes. My father brought some stones with holes from there. He journeyed as lone wanderer through the Land of Fire and Ice. Postcards reached my mom’s mailbox and so the children’s ears. Definitely I remember the adventures. When winds had destroyed his tent and had blown it away so he had to ask around with local peasants to sleep in their haystocks. 

All the memories appeared in the mountain night on the tenth day of our small expedition to gain some bergmetal specimen. Outside was cold, inside the tent as well but I wrapped myself up in a warm sleeping-bag. We planned to reach a lower peak of a whole peak chain. On the left and right slopes of the peak we expected chasms in which bergmetal reservoirs might be found. Still there was not enough material to base a decent research on. Only problem was that the region we were climbing was exposed to heavily capricious weather changes. Today we could walk in sunshine and tomorrow in snowfall and storm. The stones only answered in silence. 
We reduced our talks when we tried to scale the protruding noses and bushy eyebrows in rock. The mountain throws back any echo thousandfold. Surrounded by stones, we felt isolated and so we continued to reach our next mark. All around alone, only the expedition brought some human life into this rather indifferent world. This was the world-without-us reaching me through the night. Could discern some voices in the rolling stones and howling winds through all the mountain nights. Long ago when our earth was shaped by heat eruptions and seismic movements, the stones screamed out. Yet I don’t believe that the element bergmetal was already created back then. Rather it was a newer sidetrack of evolution. One of my assistants suggested bergmetal to be some cultural facet in urban civilization. Couldn’t agree because that seemed quite far-fetched to me. Bergmetal is to be found in nature. The expedition will deliver evidence. After sunbreak the piledriver will drill into stones to tear out bergmetal. I recall a German saying: Im Berg ruhet geborgen das Metall im Schall. Echoes can lead us to this element which is resting in the berg. By violence the geologists enter the inner realm below. In Windischeschenbach (Germany) a Continental Drilling Program (KTB) tried to reach the core of our planet and the machine mines minerals from kilometres beneath the surface. Be sure the coming wars will revolve around resources. Bergmetal can be an element freely distributable and renewable as it is located in the highest of heights. Yet would that geologically mean that it was of rather new origin?

You can buy this postal card at: / keyword: Rumänien

„Mister, we oughta leave now.“
Shit! This cannot be! Overslept ... on an expedition trip where I am supposed to lead. Holy Mother Moses! I mumbled yes yes coming coming, pushing the sleeping-bag away and not really jumping up. In a split second hastened to dress me in half-lying, half-sitting position still in the tent. When I left the tent there was some embarrassing applause by the team. Yoho! Boss! We’re ready to fly! Some members even put their fingers in the mouths to whistle. I waved to my assistant professor of geology and asked him about the weather changes and if we can estimate the smooth running of our today’s route. He shrugged his shoulders and added: Yes surely we can achieve some altitude as of today. The team seems to be really up-to-strength and he calculated the majesty of the places we’re crossing. Now you don’t really know what majesty could be in matters of scientific categories. We both found out that bergmetal needs some element of majesty in its constitution. So most likely at impressing places bergmetal as a pure element can be found. However, what shape does bergmetal actually show when it is unearthed from mountainside? We are anxious to experience it. 
The team members knew I had worked until late at night and so they excused my oversleeping. Some guys continued to giggle a bit while we were pushing the mules upwards. As a breeze came up the guys muted. For breakfast I couldn’t eat anything as I was expecting some turn in our expedition soon. The closer we got to the peak of the mountains somewhere here, the better the chances of extracting enough material for our studies. Strongly do I believe that bergmetal must be some kind of metallic stone – maybe glimmering like an anthracite. 
As of now, I don’t know in what layer bergmetal resides. In the highest bed is to exclude from rational argumentation as it has taken some time to develop. 

Anyway, if we follow the reasoning of my assistant, bergmetal is also a cultural fact. So searching for it in the mountains would be a hardly sensible thing to do. On the contrary, I still believed it lay in rest in rock. Strangely enough, the colloquial term for it appeared in a dream one night and I was already known in the scientific world as Stig Olsdal, a specialist in dubious surfaces. When there was reasonable doubt about a sediment or layer what it could bear inside, I was called upon. Don’t misunderstand my task. 
Naturally, any geology professor could work on the location as he or she was efficiently trained to handle the tools and to be an expert in the history of our earth. Yet I was expected to clarify haunted soils. There were several cases in the United States when old Native American trails seemed to be still haunted by some spirit and I was expected to demystify the place and then extract the specimen for further investigations. Some minerals are believed to hold special powers in ancient myths. So I was trained both in geology and folklore. As in the specific case of bergmetal I nurtured the notion of an elementary resource in the mountainworld. 
As for now I should really focus on the ascent of the mountain. Readily I will elaborate on the cultural facts of bergmetal next time. Just now I heard some screams of surprise from the avantgarde section. I better rush forward to ... later.

Apparently there were no interruptions this time. This blog can only rely on the texts being delivered to the editors here. We have no means to double-check the suppositions made here. It is at the reader's discretion.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

I Don't Know: Spontaneity, Bouldering, and the Crowleyan whY

"As far as Wasdale is concerned the inclination to practise on boulders and other apparatus appears to have been something that arose spontaneously in the mid 1890s" (Michael Cocker)  

1.  The Easy Way.
2.  The Right Slab. You may not use the edges.
3.    do.     You may not use the slab for handhold.
4.  The South Arete. One leg each side all the way.
5.  The Overhung Arete.
6.  The Left Crack.  You must not use the jammed stone.
7.    do.   You must not use the left branch of  the Y for handholds.
8.    do.   Finishing to the right of the j.s. (jammed stone)
8a. Between the cracks. Doubtful if this has been done fairly.
9.   The Right Crack.
10.   do.   Not using the Left Crack.
11.  The Left Undercut. Not using the Right Crack.
12.  The Right Undercut.  Keeping (?) the edge.
13.  The North Corner on the face.
14.    do.     in (?) the corner.
15.  The Steeple Ridge from the NE.
16.    do.    N. end.
17.    do.    W. end.
18.  The Left Slab.
19.    do.    Not using the edge.
20.  The Easy Crack.
21.  The Middle Slab.
22.  The Easy Way. Feet first. Face inwards.

Source: John Gill, "The First Bouldering Guide?"

Mr. Crowley, what went on in your head 
Mr. Crowley, did you talk with the dead 
Your life style to me seemed so tragic 
With the thrill of it all 
You fooled all the people with magic 
You waited on Satan's call 

Mr. Charming, did you think you were pure 
Mr. Alarming, in nocturnal rapport 
Uncovering things that were sacred 
Manifest on this earth 
Conceived in the eye of a secret 
And they scattered the afterbirth 

Mr. Crowley, won't you ride my white horse 
Mr. Crowley, it's symbolic of course 
Approaching a time that is classic 
I hear the maiden's call 
Approaching a time that is drastic 
Standing with their backs to the wall 

Was it polemically sent 
I wanna know what you meant 
I wanna know 
I wanna know what you meant


Consciousness is a symptom of disease.

All that moves well moves without will.

All skillfulness, all strain, all intention is contrary to ease.

Practise a thousand times, and it becomes difficult; a thousand thousand, and it becomes easy; a thousand thousand times a thousand thousand, and it is no longer Thou that doeth it, but It that doeth itself through thee. Not until then is that which is done well done.

Thus spoke FRATER PERDURABO as he leapt from rock to rock of the moraine without ever casting his eyes upon the ground.

(Aleister Crowley, Book of Lies, Kephale LB)

Friday, May 25, 2012

Depressive Silence - Depths of the Ocean

Depressive Silence

"One tyme mine understondyng was led downe into the see ground, and there I saw hill and dalis grene, semand, as it were, mosse begrowne, with wrekke and with gravel. Than I understode thus, that if a man or a woman were under the broade watyr, if he might have sight of God, so as God is with a man continually, he should be save in body and soule and take no harme; and, overpassing, he should have mor solace and comfort than al this world can telle" (Julian of Norwich, A Revelation of Love, chapter 10)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Bergwerk: Metal Mining

"Great is the power of memory, a fearful thing, O my God, a deep and boundless manifoldness; and this thing is the mind, and this am I myself. What am I then, O my God? What nature am I? A life various and manifold, and exceeding immense. Behold in the plains, and caves, and caverns of my memory, innumerable and innumerably full of innumerable kinds of things, either through images, as all bodies; or by actual presence, as the arts; or by certain notions or impressions, as the affections of the mind, which, even when the mind doth not feel, the memory retaineth, while yet whatsoever is in the memory is also in the mind- over all these do I run, I fly; I dive on this side and on that, as far as I can, and there is no end." (Augustine, Confessions, 10.17)

"For descend as low as we may, even to the reputed regions of Tartarus and Pluto, we never find the course of our passage any one thing absolutely similar to another. We are always meeting something new, something different; and every new and different substance is only an indication of some different change. Look at the vegetable kingdom; how varied! how pleasing! how delightful! because of this variety! And why so varied, but in consequence of the variety prevailing in the mineral kingdom, which contains its origin, root, and essence?" (Emmanuel Swedenborg; on Swedenborg and mining, see Lars Bergquist, Swedenborg's Secret, 113ff.)

"Behold,  wonderful thing! I glide down from the upper world in a bucket, / thus hanging, I am brought all the way to the dark shadows of death. / But, as I moved to and fro hanging in the middle of the air, / it was pleasant for me to sing holy hymns" (Swedenborg, Ludus Heliconus).  

"He sat down on the bench beside Elis, and began to describe the various processes minutely, placing all the details before him in the clearest and brightest colours. He talked of the Mines of Falun, in which he said he had worked since he was a boy; he described the great main-shaft, with its dark brown sides; he told how incalculably rich the mine was in gems of the finest water. More and more vivid grew his words, more and more glowing his face. He went, in his description, through the different shafts as if they had been the alleys of some enchanted garden. The jewels came to life, the fossils began to move; the wondrous Pyrosmalite and the Almandine flashed in the light of the miner's candles; the Rock-Crystals glittered, and darted their rays. Elis listened intently. The old man's strange way of speaking of all these subterranean marvels as if he were standing in the midst of them, impressed him deeply. His breast felt stifled; it seemed to him as if he were already down in these depths with the old man, and would never more look upon the friendly light of day. And yet it seemed as though the old man were opening to him a new and unknown world, to which he really properly belonged, and that he had somehow felt all the magic of that world, in mystic forebodings, since his boyhood. 'Elis Froebom,' said the old man at length, 'I have laid before you all the glories of a calling for which Nature really destined you. Think the subject well over with yourself, and then act as your better judgment counsels you."' (E.T.A. Hoffman, The Mines of Falun).


Der ist der Herr der Erde,
wer ihre Tiefe mißt
und jeglicher Beschwerde
in ihrem Schoß vergißt.

Wer ihrer Felsenglieder
geheimen Bau versteht
und unverdrossen nieder
zu ihrer Werkstatt geht.

Er ist mit ihr verbündet
und inniglich vertraut
und wird von ihr entzündet,
als wär' sie seine Braut.

Er sieht ihr alle Tage
mit neuer Liebe zu
und scheut nicht Fleiß noch Plage;
sie läßt ihm keine Ruh'.

Die mächtigen Geschichten
der längstverfloss'nen Zeit
ist sie ihm zu berichten
mit Freundlichkeit bereit.

Der Vorwelt heil'ge Lüfte
umwehn sein Angesicht,
und in die Nacht der Klüfte
strahlt ihm ein ew'ges Licht.

Er trifft auf allen Wegen
ein wohlbekanntes Land,
und gern kommt sie entgegen
den Werken seiner Hand.

Ihm folgen die Gewässer
hilfreich den Berg hinauf,
und alle Felsenschlösser
tun ihre Schätze' ihm auf.

Er führt des Goldes Ströme
in seines Königs Haus
und schmückt die Diademe
mit edlen Steinen aus.

Zwar reicht er treu dem König
den glückbegabten Arm,
doch frägt er nach ihm wenig
und bleibt mit Freuden arm.

Sie mögen sich erwürgen
am Fluß um Gut und Geld;
er bleibt auf den Gebirgen
der frohe Herr der Welt.

-- Novalis

[translation here]

What is outer is what is inner, raised to the level of a secret -- Perhaps also vice versa. (Novalis)

Georgious Agricola, De re metallica

Minas Morgul

further reading: Mareike Henrich, Im Bergwerk der Seele. Das Bergwerkmotiv in Novalis'Heinrich von Ofterdingen' und E.T.A. Hoffmanns'Die Bergwerke zu Falun' (2003); Noah Herigman, Romantic Rocks, Aesthetic Geology (2004); Catherine E. Rigby, Topographies Of The Sacred: The Poetics Of Place In European Romanticism (2004), 104ff.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Sunn 0))) - Why Dost Thou Hide Thyself in Clouds?

Sunn O)))

Why art thou silent & invisible, 
Father of Jealousy?
Why dost thou hide thyself in clouds
From every searching Eye?

 -- William Blake, "To Nobodaddy"

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Furze - Beneath the Wings of the Black Vomit Above

No 1 Asks at the Known End's Edge it's clearest answer
No 2 Temporarily controls No 1's fear of No 3
No 3 Strays out away from all relations
No 1 Names No 2 "HALF-ETERNITY"
No 2 (don't) reply to that
No 3 Will sometime be pure

No 1 Must think of No 1 as No 1 in action and end
No 2 May have replyed but also eventually made that question...
No 3 Is the Only one at last; No 1 and No 2 blindly related

They blindly related, for some (knew)...
For Black is the holy this the call for existence
Stimulating the unrelated Woe. Sold as one as Everything.

The summit of the mount—that high state of perfection we here call union of a soul with God . . . The darkness and trials, spiritual and temporal, that fortunate souls ordinarily undergo on their way to the high state of perfection are so numerous and profound that human science cannot understand them adequately. Nor does experience of them equip one to explain them. Only those who suffer them will know what this experience is like, but they won’t be able to describe it. (John of the Cross, The Ascent of Mount Carmel)

Monday, April 16, 2012

Aurvandil - Over the Seven Mountains

"There is a Mountain situated in the midst of the earth or center of the world, which is both small and great. It is soft, also above measure hard and stony. It is far off and near at hand, but by the providence of God invisible. In it are hidden the most ample treasures, which the world is not able to value. This mountain - by envy of the devil, who always opposes the glory of God and the happiness of man - is compassed about with very cruel beasts and ravening birds - which make the way thither both difficult and dangerous. And therefore until now - because the time is not yet come - the way thither could not be sought after nor found out. But now at last the way is to be found by those that are worthy - but nonetheless by every man's self-labor and endeavors.

To this Mountain you shall go in a certain night - when it comes - most long and most dark, and see that you prepare yourselves by prayer. Insist upon the way that leads to the Mountain, but ask not of any man where the way lies. Only follow your Guide, who will offer himself to you and will meet you in the way. But you are not to know him. This Guide will bring you to the Mountain at midnight, when all things are silent and dark." (Thomas Vaughn, Lumen de Lumine, or a New Magical Light [1651]).

And the seventh mountain was in the midst of these, and it excelled them in height, resembling the seat of a throne. (Book of Enoch, chapter XXIV)

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Inquisition / Liberty Bell

Far in the night sky a path is born Stars form the path and carry my soul Cosmic fire of the stars I ride High I rise as a master of skies Lonesome realm where the spirits are dust Poison clouds are the breath of life Tunnels of death are invisible wings Mystique moons are floating tombs Black cosmic sea, I sing to thee Open the path, oh! Majesty Infinite universe as silent as death In this coffin I lay to rest Astral bodies guide me to the throne Now I have joined the cosmic crypts Black cosmic sea, I sing to thee Open the path, oh! Majesty

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Moving forward (II)

We managed to extract some specimen of this new element called bergmetal. It seemd to "grow" in the mountains. At least we found it some few meters under the ground. It was practically new and so Olsdal and his fellows fetched some grams into their bags. Our man Nick was still with the doc and we tried to get some connection to the helicopter rescue yet haven't been successful so far. We keep trying. We keep holding contact to the injured and the doc.
As far as I can remember, I was fascinated at landscapes. How they fill horizons with a multitude of features. If we go back a few centuries, we come across the whole movement of Romanticism where the concept of elegy entered poetry and then later novel-writing too. Sublimity is the keyword in this context.
In metal music landscape is often understood as background for generic stories. You can go check these postings here and find your own theory. However, now with the discovery of the new element bergmetal, there arises the question if black metal and some pagan metal can only exist by the material they feed on. If a musical style goes under the title of black metal, maybe the reason is not only because black relates to satanic and primeval evil but because the matter black metal thrives on, is utterly black. Maybe even some space explorers among the music groups can simulate a black hole effect. Just in case ... I mean, it's all about speculation. Pondering over a music that I've been listening to for years now. Curiously enough, my taste is not strictly limited to these black metal eruptions. Maybe after all those decades of tradition it is time to venture to new territories? Don't you agree?

A breath-taking vantage point invites to new perspectives. Ever been to a mountain peak? Then enjoy the view and start to think the valley conditions over. To stand on a mountain and feeling like ... Emperor sending guitar hooks to the night sky. A blaze in the Northern sky. Ablaze flames growing higher. Sitting on the bergthron. The metaphors abound and by the course of time they will lose their grip. Grinning mouths lacking in teeth. Grown old and then the bodies just crumble and fall down to a hole six feet under. Earth claims her creatures again. Curtains closed. Thank you. Party's over.

So bergmetal as a new element to metal circuits can open our eyes for the materiality of the music. The melodies and the high-pitched guitars always seem so aetherial, only hard to grasp, flipping through our fingers. Yet without a body to inhabit, we cannot produce any music. We need bodies to receive and resonate to sound.
So, a repeating pattern helps to stabilize the black metal stereotype. A sub-genre to be easily recognized and labelled. Consumers will show grateful support. You won't be disappointed. Even more, you can be deadly sure about the results, if you want to spend your money. For proper accord with scene regulations, any metal release owns a rebellious touch to it and by being perceived as belonging to metal community, this music practices opposition to no-matter-what. This perception is rather incorrect as any music release appears in a certain context. By repeating patterns a sense of community can be sustained. Social groups with a definite set of values guarantee safety to a certain degree. Apart from those metal scene structures, if the explorer team we're following in this report decides to map new territory, we can easily guess that their mission might differ from the gros of metal scene activists. Following their trip to the mountains entails a degree of turbulence we should become accustomed to. It's not only for the thrill. You can limit your interest to new releases and gossip talk. You will certainly miss some underground movements in the material of metal music.
Now return to the exploration.

Is there a binding relation between scaling mountains and collecting grams of bergmetal?
The question is: at what places can we find bergmetal? In mountains? Most probably.
Yet, have you ever heard about a studio located on rocks? Mostly, we find them in cities and some in Sweden's countryside. So when Immortal stand high above valleys, they use their guitar-axes without any wires to electricity. Imagining, their guitars are fed by the atmosphere. Bergmetal appeals to a thematic approach: it is the lyrics that build up the phenomenon of bergmetal. If we experience sound on a mountain slope, sound can escape in any direction as there is apparently no "close room" where sound could be geborgen (past participle of German verb bergen which owns berg of bergmetal yet means to hold sth. or to recover respectively to rescue). There is no room to hold the sound. It can evade and fall down or rise up what- and where-ever it likes to. 

My argumentation holds the fact that there is a material aspect to music, too. I presented this approach at the Second BM Theory Symposium in London in January 2011 – so metal follows rock, in history of popular music and there is a material transformation process involved in this development. A country abundant with mountains might produce a high percentage of qualified black metal, doesn't it? I followed this question in another article (to be published sometime in 2012, keep you posted).
Bergmetal could also be a sort of black metal emulating the geological phenomenon of berge (read: mountains). How can mountains – accumulations of rock, ice, earth and grass – be put to sound? Tough question that needs some digression. Answering to that needs time, some detour.

"The fact that the universe is fundamentally alive, spontaneously self-ordering at all levels – from the very small to the very big – is a shock to those who thought it was based on a matter that was boring, determined and fundamentally dead." (Charles Jenks, 'The Post Modern Agenda', in The Post Modern Reader. New York: St. Martin's Press, 1992. 35)
Readers are fond of receiving shocking breaking-news from mountain trips: there were accidents, incidents or even casualties. Any serious explorer won't deliver that, only dime novelists find their pleasure in coming up to the expectations. The explorers won't deliver such items of news as they are naturally interested in the success of their endeavours. That's that. This exploration in search of the new element bergmetal proved to have been planned quite carefully. It saw years of advanced research before the actual start of the mountain conquest. That was due to the mission's delicacy. We effected several explosions in the mountainside and had only a half-hearted permission from the local authorities. Normally, they asked for a decision in parliament yet we directly addressed this concern to the Ministry of Energy and Resources and by sharing the exploits with the Ministry we could avoid a debate. They don't possess the capacities to exploit this new element themselves so they bought in our mission. Ph.D. Olsdal was not really fond of this peculiar loss of independence yet for the greater cause, he accepted. Without explosives we would haven't been able to discover the element as it needs a second glance beneath the surface to discover bergmetal. Putting it into the right angle and then still having enough time to take cover always verged on the brink of disaster. Fortunately, our specialist was able to put the explosives in safe places and the exploit of bergmetal was satisfying enough.
First explosion brought ---

again a disturbance of transmission. Excuses. We depend on some prototype wireless connections in high altitudes. Sometimes there is too much noise and distracting signals. In such cases we only receive fragmented texts, filled up with strangest characters. We're trying to fix that situation until next time.

Dominik Irtenkauf

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Besvikelsens Dystra Monotoni - The Black Hymn of the Universe

The Universe is not reflected in another universe, and yet the Remote is accessible to us at each of its points.

Black is not merely what man sees in man, it is the only “color” inseparable from the hyper-intelligible expanse of the Universe.

Stop sending your ships through the narrow cosmo-logical corridor. Stop making them climb the extreme walls of the world. Let them jump over the cosmic barrier and enter into the hyperspace of the Universe. Cease having them compete with light, for your rockets too can realize the more-than-psychic, postural mutation, and shift from light to black universe which is no longer a color; from cosmic color to postural and subjective black. Let your rockets become subject of the Universe and be present at every point of the Remote.

See black! Not that all your suns have fallen--they have since reappeared, only slightly dimmer--but Black is the “color” that falls eternally from the Universe onto your Earth.

(excerpts from: François Laruelle, "On the Black Universe.")

Bergmetal [a lost album]

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Thergothon - The Unknown Kadath In The Cold Waste

colossal towers far in the horizon
a reflection from the dark past
a shadow from the Time
before time a memory of a divine dominion
distant piping of a cosmic flute
a hymn so high, a sound so strange
almost able to be heard voices from the Outside

"Higher and higher rose the light and the blackness beneath it, till all the northern sky was obscured by the rugged conical mass. . . . towering monstrous over all peaks and concernments of earth, and tasting the atomless aether where the cryptical moon and the mad planets reel. No mountain known of man was that which loomed before them. The high clouds far below were but a fringe for its foothills. The groping dizziness of topmost air was but a girdle for its loins. Scornful and spectral climbed  that bridge
betwixt earth and heaven, black in eternal night, and crowned with a pshent of unknown
 stars whose awful and significant outline grew every moment clearer. . . . Higher and higher
rose the light, till it mingled with the loftiest orbs of the zenith and winked down
at the flyers  with lurid mockery. All the north beneath it was blackness now;
dread, stony  blackness from infinite depths to infinite heights, with only that
pale winking beacon perched unreachably at the top of all vision.  . . . There
were towers on that titan mountaintop; horrible domed towers in noxious and 
incalculable tiers and clusters beyond any dreamable workmanship of 
man; battlements and terraces of wonder  and menace, all 
limned tiny and black and distant against the starry 
pshent that glowed malevolently at the uppermost
rim of sight. Capping that most measureless 
of mountains was a castle beyond all 
mortal thought, and in it glowed the
daemon-light. Then Randolph 
Carter knew that his quest 
was done, and that he saw
above him the goal of all 
forbidden steps and 
audacious visions; 
the fabulous, the 
incredible home 
of the Great 
Ones atop

(H. P. Lovecraft, Dream Quest of Unknown Kadath)

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Darkthrone - Hans Siste Vinter


One should see that all appearance
Is like mist and fog;
Though one has vowed to liberate all sentient beings,
He should know that all manifestations
Are like reflections of the moon in water.

Without attachment, he knows
That the human body is but a magic spell.
So from all bindings he gains freedom.
Like the immaculate lotus growing out of mud,
He attains the conviction of Practice.

The mind is omnipresent like space;
It illumines all manifestations as the Dharmakaya [truth-body, reality-body];
It knows all and lightens all.
I see it clearly like a crystal
In my palm!

("The Gray Rock Vajra Enclosure," The Hundred Thousand Songs of Milarepa)

Friday, March 9, 2012

Satyricon - Black Lava

Grey heavens, no light shed Bleak day, change is ahead Oval mountainside, naked cold Unreleased powers, no fright Slide down sorror, smell what comes with the breeze Cold chambers, punishment awaits Hollow tone haunts, anticipation's choir songs Turn around, face the depth of inner sanctum Autum in the air, (the) smell of Black Metal 90-95 World moves, in mysterious ways Body onwards, mind drifts You die, then we hail (to our relief) New age dawns Sickness; won't understand, Face all wrath Grace falls Burning fist Volcano shaking no turning back Fates are being sealed Heavens blunder, Will you or will you not to heroism walk Black Lava, drifting down the mountainside Pernicious flow, redemptive perpetuity Black Lava, you can't fight If my world's a joke, do you see them smile? Hellbound me - on a throne of gold Unholy drive, the gods arrogant grin Wastelands prey on dying cattle Glimpse of glory, walk ahead Slaves of Nazareth, can not be fed Desert sucks on poor man's thirst Black Lava, drfiting down the mountainside Black Lava, you can't fight


"In one sense, and in one only, the idea of a continuous a order of things is admissible, in so far as the phenomena which introduced, and those which are to terminate, the existing dispensation, may have been, and may in future be, nothing more than a gigantic development of agencies which are in continual operation around us. The experience we possess of volcanic agency is not yet large enough to enable us to set limits to its force ; and as we see the rarity of subterraneous action generally proportioned to its violence, there may be appointed, in the natural order of things, convulsions to take place after certain epochs, on a scale which the human race has not yet lived long enough to witness. The soft silver cloud which writhes innocently on the crest of Vesuvius, rests there without intermission ; but the fury which lays cities in sepulchres of lava, bursts forth only after intervals of centuries; and the still fiercer indignation of the greater volcanoes, which make half the globe vibrate with earthquake, and shrivels up whole kingdoms with flame, is recorded only in dim distances of history: so that it is not irrational to admit that there may yet be powers dormant, not destroyed, beneath the apparently calm surface of the earth, whose date of rest is the endurance of the human race, and whose date of action must be that of its doom. But whether such colossal agencies are indeed in the existing order of things or not, still the effective truth, for us, is one and the same. The earth, as a tormented and trembling ball, may have rolled in space for myriads of ages before humanity was formed from its dust; and as a devastated ruin it may continue to roll, when all that dust shall again have been mingled with ashes that never were warmed by life, or polluted by sin. But for us the intelligible and substantial fact is that the earth has been brought, by forces we know not of, into a form fitted for our habitation: on that form a gradual, but destructive, change is continually taking place, and the course of that change points clearly to a period when it will no more be fitted for the dwelling-place of men" (John Ruskin, Of Mountain Beauty, XII.5).

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Wallop - Metallic Alps


"Then when an avalanche is discharged down the gorges of the Jungfrau, one fancies it the signal gun of a volley of artillery. It seems to betoken the presence of some huge animal, crouching in suspense but in perpetual vigilance, and ready at any moment to spring into portentous activity" (Leslie Stephen, The Playground of Europe)

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Mgła - With Hearts Toward None


No golden thrones to follow
No shrines of solace to seek

I shall erect myself over transience
I shall ascend over flesh
Steadfastly tearing through aether
I shall rise to the beyond
I shall reveal heights
not yet imagined
I shall rewrite Summa de homine
I shall speak with tongues of angels
And I shall burn with pure light

I will burn allright

On to rupture; bonds rearranged
Scorch the archaic remnants
and rip through primordial thoughts
On to diremption: self / kin
All glory and strenght of culture
now null and void

No golden thrones to follow
No shrines of solace to be found
And only the locusts shall sing
at the end of the day

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Movements in Mountains

While I was hanging on the mountain wall, I heard a movement far above. Was it Epikryton who has always been so fast in scaling? It seemed like cracking of stones or rather losing grip in a field of pebbles. Some slopes running down towards the valley. Any feeling of gravity is unearthed as we’re climbing towards the peak. I remember one trip to South Tyrol still in schooldays, when we climbed up on the so-called home mountain of a village where the whole class stayed at. There was no awe as I started joking around with mates but I still recall the breathtaking panoramic views on the landscape. All in all, I was more concerned about what girls I’m going to kiss at the top of the peak as part of the old tradition. We ended up exchanging cheek hugs with the whole class.

The next big step towards the mountain world was when I received an invitation to Georgia in the Caucasus region. Yet it took three stays there to finally reach the Higher Caucasian Range. I paid a visit to the mountain where Prometheus was allegedly shackled to. And it is called the Snow-Crowned. I could hear shrilling Immortal guitars as escort to the top. When there is much decay and demise in black metal, there is Erhabenheit too. Can those warriors factually excel in mountaineering? Have they undergone special learning? Can they handle the techniques? Those questions rushed through my head while I was reaching for the next step. It is known that warriors of black metal enjoy day-long trips into forests and mountainsides. Reminding somehow of a Walden ideal to get lost from the spoils of urban culture. Consequently, bands who live close to mountains are among strongest exponents of mountain music. Have we ever heard stones sing?
In ulterior states of fear oh yes or in excesses of joy, we have heard stones sing.

When this expedition started, all seemed in routine. Here, it was different to the Alps where it is often easy to get by car almost until the top of a mountain yet here we had to rely upon mules. The mountain was said to offer some breathtaking chasms and I was experienced enough to go for views rather than techniques. Never been the sort of climb nerd. In fact, it had cost me quite some courage to eventually starting mountaineering. That was mostly due to curiosity. Plus I wanted to feel the experience myself – the experience of bergbesteigung. Scale the mountains, conquer masses of stone and become emperor of Montana.
I already told how I was hearing some noises from above, some sixty meters something in a diagonal stretch from the position I held on the grip. It sounded crispy, like forks scratching over tinplates. And it was cold hier oben. Fucking cold, as if Norway’s blizzard sons blowing brass. No North in my position – hanging on stone walls at the fringes of Europe. Was on tour with a group of friends who wanted to discover new territory. Caucasian territory where we ensembled high nigh to the sky.
“Hey“ I yelled over to Jens ”have you heard this sound from above? What could it be?“
”What? Here?“
”Yes. Why not? Maybe they have some duel over who’s got to be the boss at the roof.“
Goats? Could that be possible? What I knew was that Georgia‘s mountains surely bore bears and wolves. Goats played a seminal role in myths in those regions. The screeching came from another source, definitely. This obscure noise couldn’t be traced to any living animal, I was deadly sure about. We started ---

The grandeur of tall monuments, the will to persevere, evolving to a Zarathustra of Nietzschean coinage, to become elite, to stand above human beings – mountains deliver a ready-picture for that impulse. So the bands get their grip on the box of mountain images to evoke altitude.
The height of sound, the high-pitched guitars shrieking in such stark contrast to the bowel-shaking bass guitars of death metal, that black metal seems to be predestined to represent images of mountains. It loses touch to the ground and reaches for the dissolution of corporeal matter. Higher and higher to the sky. However – and that is a big but – always glue your boots to the earth, that means don’t fly around like butterflies. Conquer mountains, reach the sky yet keep your feet to the ground. Climb and scale leave the valley but always feel the solid surface of stone beneath. In the end, the warriors reach the peak and the guitars throw shrill ropes to protrusions. In between you hang freely in air (of course always connected to the carabiners). Then, when all is fixed and double-checked for safety, you can leave your position and advance to the next on your way to the top.

Nobody could understand or reconstruct when the free fall of our record keeper Nick had started. He fell down rocks on ice. We hoped for him to fall rather softly on some new snow yet ... we could spot some red on the white. Red for Fire, Black for Death. Is he dead? Does he respond to our calls? We decided to lower our bodies to his location and we had some medicinally trained guy with us. He might check if. Slowly he approached Nick on the pure white snow, little red spots dripping from the climber‘s forehead into snow. His helmet absorbed the shock. Thus it got a little bent. Nevertheless – the doc guy gave us a sign: still alive. Thank heavens! Only red for fire. The fire that was still burning inside Nick. We had some ideas about installing a flag on the roof plateau. Nick nearly dying made us think differently, feeling awkwardly thrown behind all energy. So he was not able to carry his way alone. Someone had to stay with him and check his condition. We decided the doc should stay. He built up the tent which Nick was lain into. Some luftmatratz helped to store Nick’s hit body. He received some smaller contractions and needed most of all rest.

It’s plain old mountain music. Same stuff they’ve been singing for more than a hundred years. Really? It all sounds so utterly depressing to lay ears. Hard to distinguish the different traits in the overall impact. True, like a cannonball smashing into your beloved housing. How could you dare? How could you start to muse over this matter? Futile fugitive flattery. Only those who are inside, might gain some knowledge from analysis. Experience ladies'n’gents, experience I’d like to remember you it’s the entrance to soul. Songs of innocence and experience hide behind clouds and only if those clouds are trying to steal by the mountain peaks, they can be caused to open up for heavy rain showers. Castles in air feel disturbed by opening clouds. They pour down to reality, to stone ice and snow. Mountains might be reasons for drifting clouds to stop by sudden disturbance. Unimpressed the peaks scrape the sky and tear it open.
Image courtesy of MODIS Rapid Response Project at NASA/GSFC

Mountains bring clouds to grounded theory. Grounded by practice. Easily to fly with your thoughts to any places imaginary or real, no matter. Climbing step by step and never losing sight of your safety, you can reach the vantage point. That’s why bergmetal exists. Impress by express movements. To stand above the daily worries, leave for the mountains. Bergmetal feels, the material they’re walking on, builds their own walls of sound.

We left Nick with the doc. Hauling winds accompanying our decision to continue the expedition. (Reminding the readers here of immortal guitar shrieks skywards!) This mountain range belonged to the last few challenges left for men to accept and triumph over. Its position is hard to communicate. It lies beyond the civilized regions, somewhere in the steppes yet beyond towns and known roads. Our travel took long enough even though we used airplanes to get there quickly. We heard ... well myths and legends. That some rare explorers encountered a strange folk in the height of the mountain world. Fully bearded light hair (some guessed it was due to heavy sunlight) and tall bodies. I thought that had to be a fairy story. Anyway, we had a team of geologists with us who were interested in rare earth metals. They were highly paid and just by random chance I happen to have known their leader: Ph.D. Stig Olsdal. He wrote his thesis on the rare earth metals‘ abundance in the Earth’s crust, by focusing on Scandinavia. (Some chemists from among others Sweden had discovered several of these elements in the 19th century.)
He planned some excursion and needed men competent at mountaineering. So he sort of “rent“ me and my team to get to the Inner A*. While probing the surroundings we ventured upon bergmetal which hence has been unknown to Olsdal and his colleagues. In the run of our mounting we couldn’t expect the dramatic turn to our ---

At this place, the report elapses and this blog waits for further notes on later occasions. The lines reached from this far-off corner. They seem to mix up two accounts of mountain conquest.
The blog’s editor excuses the delay in exploring into the movement’s origin.

Dominik Irtenkauf