Mayhem

Genres: Heavy Metal
Decades Active: 1980s 1990s 2000s

Biography

Formed in Norway in 1983 by Destructor (Øystien Åarseth, 1968, Norway, d. 10 August 1993, Oslo, Norway; guitar), who was a young fan of the Satanic black metal played by bands such as Bathory, Celtic Frost and Venom. Åarseth was joined in the original line-up by Necrobutcher (b. Jørn Stubberud; bass), Manheim (b. Kjetil Manheim; drums) and Messiah (vocals). Mayhem made their first impact with the 1986 demo Pure Fucking Armageddon, which is regarded in underground circles as a classic of extreme metal. The black metal genre was losing popularity, however, along with the leather-and-chains imagery and Satanic lyrics that were its trademark. Rather than follow heavy metal fashion and adopt the hardcore punk or death metal genres that were becoming popular, Åarseth (now known as Euronymous) opted to preserve purist black metal and founded the Posercorpse Music label.

In 1987, with vocalist Maniac (b. Sven Erik...

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