Friday, December 9, 2016

Mayhem – "Freezing Moon" (1994)

Everything here is so cold
Everything here is so dark

I just used Google’s analytics tools to learn more about the people who read 2 or 3 lines.

A little over 71% of the people who visited 2 or 3 lines sometime in the last 365 days were from the good ol’ U. S. of A.

Not surprisingly, the country with the second-largest number of 2 or 3 lines fans is Canada.  About 6% of my readers are residents of “The Great White North.”  (No surprise there, eh?)

A recent "2 or 3 lines" post
You might expect the UK to be next on the list, but it turns out that 2 or 3 lines has more German fans than British fans.

The rest of the 2 or 3 lines “Top Ten” is France, Russia, South Korea, India, Australia, and Brazil – which just edged out the Ukraine for the #10 spot.  

I wonder why more Ukrainians than Italians, Japanese, Mexicans, and Spaniards read 2 or 3 lines.  (I don’t recall writing about a single Ukrainian pop song, or even a song by a Ukrainian-American singer.)

Vietnam, Romania, Ethiopia, and Egypt are tied for 50th place in the rankings.  Those countries and Tanzania edged out Taiwan and Hong Kong, which surprises me.

Bringing internet service (and
"2 or 3 lines") to the people of Tanzania
China barely made it into the top one hundred, which is a shocker.  In fact, I had as many visitors from Rwanda, Namibia, Iraq, Cambodia, and Albania as from China, which must block access to my wildly popular little blog.  Obviously, 2 or 3 lines is viewed as a threat to the current government regime in China.  (Since I had exactly zero readers from Cuba, I’m guessing the Castro dictatorship has taken steps to keep 2 or 3 lines from reaching the freedom-deprived Cuban citizenry.)

I had only a single visitor over the course of the last year from 21 different countries.  About a third of those countries are African nations (e.g., Zambia, Gambia, and Côte d’Ivoire), while several others are small Caribbean island-states (e.g., Grenada, Turks and Caicos, and Martinique).  

The most obscure country that 2 or 3 lines has penetrated is Svalbard and Jan Mayen, which I’ve never heard of (and neither have you).

Svalbard is an archipelago in the Arctic Ocean that is part of Norway, but the Svalbard Treaty of 1920 – which was eventually signed by 40-odd nations – limits Norway’s sovereignty over Svalbard.  For example, the treaty limits the militarization of Svalbard, and provides that the citizens of all nations are free to hunt, fish, and engage in mining there.

Jan Mayen Island
Jan Mayen is a 144-square-mile volcanic island, also in the Arctic Ocean, that is fully under Norwegian sovereignty.  While there are no permanent residents on Jan Mayen, eighteen members of the Norwegian Armed Forces and Norwegian Meteorological Institute spends the winter there, and about twice that number inhabit the island in the summer.  (There are a total of eight C-130 flights in and out of Jan Mayen each year – weather permitting.)

I imagine a lonely Norwegian meteorologist, far from home and family, scrolling through a 2 or 3 lines post on a long winter’s night and listening to the featured song.  

After a few minutes of that, he goes back to watching internet porn.

*     *     *     *     *

“Freezing Moon,” which was released on the Norwegian death metal band Mayhem’s first album, De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas (“About the Mystery of the Lord Satan”), is considered by many to be the best black metal song of all time.

Mayhem’s drummer, Jan Axel “Hellhammer” Blomberg, said that the song’s lyrics were intended to make people commit suicide.  If that’s true, they worked.

The lyrics to “Freezing Moon” were penned by the band’s lead singer, Per “Dead” Ohlin, who slit his wrists and shot himself in the head with a shotgun in 1991.  Mayhem’s guitarist, Øystein “Euronymous” Aarseth, found Dead’s body, but bought a disposable camera and photographed the body before calling the police.  He also gathered bits of Dead’s skull and made necklaces from them for his favorite black metal musicians.

After De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas was recorded, Mayhem’s bass player, Varg “Count Grishnackh” Vikernes, murdered Euronymous by stabbing him 23 times.  Vikernes, who was also convicted of burning down several churches, served 15 years of his 21-year sentence and was released on probation in 2009.

Today, he is a leader of the Norwegian Heathen Front, a nationalistic, ecofascist, and Pagan group (which is characterized as a neo-Nazi front by some people).

(You can’t make this stuff up.)

Click here to read more about Mayhem and Burzum, which is the name under which Vikernes has recorded several albums.  (I have over 70 Burzum songs on my computer.  Believe it or not, his music is really interesting.)  

Here’s “Freezing Moon”:

Click below to order the song from Amazon:

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