| Gorgoroth is one of the better-known 2nd wave Black Metal bands worldwide, thus they don't really need an introduction.
Lately, there have been some troubles between the bandmembers, resulting in the departure of the founding member Infernus from the band... Gaahl and King are now the legal owners ofthe band name and logo... the latter has accepted to answer our questions in the following interview.
Xul & Belial: Hi King, first of all thank you for this opportunity, it's a pleasure.
Gorgoroth don’t need any introduction, about 16 years of existence, a huge discography and world wild echoes. How can you recapitulate all of this?
King: I ve been part of Gorgoroth for almost 10 years now. It’s mainly been hard work getting our agenda across. We have toured basically everywhere and recorded albums. We are ready for brining Gorgoroth into a new area now. We will spread the word of Satan everywhere.
Xul & Belial: Your presence in the band started from the 5th Gorgoroth album “Incipit Satan”, which is claimed to be one of the best Gorgoroth albums because Infernus was the main writer of the songs… do you agree with this ?
King: Incipit Satan isn’t my favorite Gorgoroth’s album. The best songs of that album were actually written by Tormentor. He wrote songs like Incipit Satan and Unchain my heart. The songs of that album which still stand the test of time. Infernus hasn’t written any music worth mentioning since 1996, when he wrote music for Under the Sign of Hell.
Xul & Belial: So which is your favorite Gorgoroth album?
King: Pentagram and Ad Majorem Satanhas Gloriam.
Xul & Belial: When Pentagram was released you were not part of the band. Talking about Ad Majorem Satanhas Gloriam, this album has some melodic touches more than the other albums... who is the main writer of this last album?
King: I’ve written almost all music in Gorgoroth since I joined.
Xul & Belial: And Infernus? He was a spectator?
King: Infernus played guitar on the albums.
Xul & Belial: Why did you leave Gorgoroth in 2006 (to come back again in 2007)?
King: I didn’t really leave. At that time I had to take care of some personal issues and everybody besides me were in jail. It didn’t have any practical meaning for the band and it was easier to deal with some aspects of my private life outside of the band for a few weeks.
Xul & Belial: So, when Ghaal and Infernus were in jail, you tried to stay away from Gorgoroth to avoid problems... but since they left the jail, Gorgoroth knew many changes. Ghaal and you decided to kick Infernus out of the band, saying that he didn't do anything for the band for 8 years... do you think that this reason was really important to kick him out of the band?
King: We had been a three-piece for years. Gorgoroth in 2007 was me, Gaahl and Infernus. Gaahl had problems working with Infernus for years and in the end it was not possible to continue. We kicked Infernus out of the band. We felt we had put so much into the band to justify to continue to use it in the future a banner for our art. I do however understand that Infernus has troubles accepting that, and I do understand his arguemnets for keeping the name. its a conflict of interests, and right now we own the rights to all future use of the name.
Xul & Belial: Infernus was the founder of Gorgoroth, he was the first member of the band and he's been performing with it since 1992. You and Gaahl then joined 6 or 7 years later... how did the Tribunal give you the possibility of using the Gorgoroth name and logo and not Infernus?
King: I have already answered that. 1992 isn’t 2007. We had made all music and lyrics for Gorgoroth since we joined the band. I couldn’t let something I have worked so hard on die. I found it hard for Infernus to actually be able to continue Gorgoroth without me and Gaahl. Time will tell if we have awakened the wolf in him again. I hope he is able to create some pure satanic music in the future. He can’t use the name Gorgoroth anymore. That’s all.
Xul & Belial: More recently, Infernus appealed on the Prime Norway Tribunal's decision. The 4th March 2008, the ex-guitarist made a reasonable offer to you and Gaahl, without us, the public, knowing what this offer is about.
King: The offer he came with showed that he has some problems with reality concerning this matter. I actually hope his claims will be public one day. His demands included that we couldnt talk to the press for something like a year, me and Gaahl couldnt perform live for a year or so and pay him a bunch of money. It was just laughable. The situation now is simple. We own legally the trademark and logo Gorgoroth. We are the only ones who can use it. Infernus only wants to make things unclear and blurry. Its just one Gorgoroth and thats me and Gaahl.
Xul & Belial: So, Gorgoroth is only Gaahl and King now, and for performing live shows, you have session members. How do you prepare these shows? Do you rehearse with guest members? And what about a stable line-up for the near future?
King: We will use Nick Barker, Teloch and Ice Dale for the summerfests. Gorgoroth is only me and Gaahl. We will use session members to help us in the studio and live. We don’t need anyone else involved to create art under the banner Gorgoroth. We will just continue as we actually have done the past years. Its no drama. Nothing has really changed lots since Infernus left the band.
Xul & Belial: So what about the next Gorgoroth release? Are you writing the new album? And now that your contract with Regain Records is dissolved, you are an unsigned band, are you looking for a new deal to release the new album?
King: I’m soon done with maiking the new album. I have 7 songs done already, and ideas and riffs for several more. I m in dialouge with lots of recordlabels. we are not in a hurry and wont sign any deal before we know its in the best interest of our art. We want to spread our ideas; use terror and fear to actually create a change. I m sure we will acchieve our goals.
Xul & Belial: Will this album have the same duration as the other ones? Because, this is something people have been wondering about for some time... why are Gorgoroth's full-length albums somewhat 'short' compared to 'usual' full-length albums? And what about the lyrics? Will they still be in the same vein as the other releases (as one can guess from the album and song titles) or will you try something new for Gorgoroth?
King: As I ve stated earlier; its me and Gaahl who have made everything concerning Gorgoroth’s art the past years. The next album will be a natural progression from what we have done earlier.
Xul & Belial: Gorgoroth's lyrics have never been released because Gorgoroth doesn't want their songs to get "bad covers". Don't you think that cover songs do more good to the original band than to the one doing it, despite the cover being good or bad?
King: It has never been a topic of importance to me personally. The lyrics take part in a bigger picture, the main agenda. We havent made the lyrics public yet. I dont know what we ll do in the future.
Xul & Belial: 'The Gorgoroth Anecdote', you were banned for some time from playing in Poland as you had some problems with polish justice because, during your show in Krakow, Poland, on June 2004, you crucified and impaled sheep on stage. How can you comment this?
King: It was just a concert we did in Poland. Nothing special about it really. We played rather badly as I remember it.
Xul & Belial: How did your collaboration with Shining take place? Especially that, not only they're not from the same country, but also their style is quite 'different' from Gorgoroth's.
King: Mr Kvarforth is a close friend of mine. He is almost as unstable and insane as me at times. He deserves a medal for that. He had problems finding a suitable bassplayer for their next album and I agreed to help him out. Their latest album is one of the best releases in metal the past years, so I m looking forward to partcipate on that album. I always seek situations that are diferenet from my past. Thats how I am able to grow. You should never stand on one place too long. Movement is very important.
Xul & Belial: So that's the reason why you also play in other bands: Sahg, I (Abbath's side project) and Audrey Horne, to just name a few which are really different from the music you usually play? And how are your relations with Abbath? Do you plan to do something special with him?
King: It’s important for me to do music outside of Gorgoroth. It keeps the music I make for Gorgoroth more pure I believe. It’s also important to do different kinds of music to get inspiration and a will to change. Abbath is one of my close friends. We have talked about doing something more with I in the future. Right now he is occupied with the next Immortal album and I am creating music for the next Gorgoroth. We are talking together and we play ideas for each other nighttimes in Bergen.
Xul & Belial: What are your favorite Immortal releases?
King: They have released several quality albums.
Xul & Belial: What do you think about the current international, and more specifically the norwegian Black Metal scene, compared to the old days of the genre?
King: I dont know. I dont view Gorgoroth as a part of any scene. We are occupied with ourselves and our own art. I do however support everything doing the devils will, wether it be music or politics.
Xul & Belial: Thank you Tom for your time. Any final words to our readers/your fans?
King: Hail Satan! Ave Satan! Rege Satan!
Interview by Xul & Belial with King via MSN (April 2008)