- Varg Vikernes – vocals, lyrics, rhythm and lead guitar, bass guitar, drum kit, synthesizer (1991–present)
Burzum is a Norwegian music project founded by Varg Vikernes in 1991. Although Burzum never played live performances, it became a part of the early Norwegian black metal scene and is considered to be one of the most influential acts in black metal. The word “burzum” means “darkness” in the Black Speech, a fictional language crafted by Lord of the Rings writer J. R. R. Tolkien.
Vikernes began making music as a teenager in 1988, but it was not until 1991 that he recorded his first demos as Burzum. From 1994 to 2009, Vikernes was incarcerated for the murder of Mayhem guitarist Øystein “Euronymous” Aarseth and the arson of three churches. While imprisoned, he recorded two dark ambient albums using only synthesizers, as he did not have access to drums, guitar or bass. Since his release from prison in 2009, he has recorded several more albums. Although Vikernes is known for his political views, he does not use Burzum to promote those views, and his lyrics are non-political.
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