Arcturus (band)

Arcturus (band)

Infobox musical artist
Name = Arcturus

Img_capt = Arcturus in 2005
Img_size = 250
Landscape = Yes
Background = group_or_band
Alias =
Origin = Norway
Genre = Avant-garde metal Symphonic black metal
Years_active = 1987–2007
Label = Century Media Records Music for Nations Candlelight Records The End Records Jester Records Season of Mist
Associated_acts = Age of Silence
Dimmu Borgir
The Kovenant
Spiral Architect
Ved Buens Ende
URL = []
Current_members = Steinar Sverd Johnsen
Jan Axel Blomberg
Knut Magne Valle
Hugh Mingay Simen Hestnæs
Tore Moren
Past_members = Kristoffer Rygg
Carl August Tidemann
Marius Vold
Dag F. Gravem
Øyvind Hægeland

Arcturus was an avant-garde metal band formed in Norway in 1987 under the name "Mortem". In 1990, the band changed their name to Arcturus (meaning "Bear Guardian"), likely after the Behenian fixed star Arcturus.

The band released four official full-length albums. Arcturus has experimented throughout their career, extracting influences and incorporating elements from all over the musical spectrum including black metal and classical music, but the band was rooted as a metal outfit.On April 16, 2007, it was announced that the band would be breaking up, and more details were revealed in an official statement released on the band's website on April 17th. [ [ Arcturus - Disbanded - Metal Storm ] ]

The official statement was written by all of the band members, confirming rumours that had been circulating after their Melbourne concert, the last one of the Australian tour, in which Simen "Vortex" Hestnæs, the band's vocalist, introduced the show to the audience with the words "Welcome to the last Arcturus show- ever." The statement went on to say that the split was a 'decision we made some time ago,' and that because of ongoing 'things' in their careers and lives, the members could no longer 'find the time to continue working with this band.' The statement closed with a tribute to the fans of the band, "We are humble and grateful to all the people that have supported and loved us over the years." The final lines being the names of the final lineup of the band that was Arcturus. The official statement dispelled the many rumours and explained the truth. [ [] ]

Line-up History

The original line-up was changed when bassist/vocalist Marius Vold (ex-Thorns), was taken out of the band. The band soon became labeled a black metal super group, consisting of Kristoffer "Garm" Rygg on vocals, Carl August Tidemann on guitar, Skoll on bass, and the two other original members, Hellhammer on drums, and Steinar Sverd Johnsen as main composer/keyboard player. In 1994 Samoth played guitars on the EP, Constellation, and released it on his record label, Nocturnal Art.

Rygg eventually left the band, and was replaced by Øyvind Hægeland from the band Spiral Architect. Øyvind performed live with the band, but on January 5th 2005, it was announced that Øyvind had left the band due to his moving too far away to be involved in the band, resulting in him never recording anything with the band. He was replaced by Simen "ICS Vortex" Hestnæs, who had previously (Secret Word) performed vocals on three Arcturus tracks ("Master of Disguise", "The Chaos Path", and "Painting My Horror") on "La Masquerade Infernale". Upon Carl August Tidemann's leaving the band, Knut Magne Valle joined. In 2003 Tore Moren joined on second guitar for live performances and eventually found himself accepted as an official member of the band. Knut and Tore then shared lead duties on guitar, with Knut on 7 string guitar and Tore using a standard 6 string guitar.

Final Line-up

* Steinar Sverd Johnsen, keyboard, synthesizer (also played guitars when they were called Mortem) (1990 - 2007)
* Jan Axel "Hellhammer" Blomberg, drums (1990 - 2007)
* Knut Magne Valle, guitar (1995 - 2007)
* Hugh "Skoll" Mingay, bass (1995 - 2000, 2002 - 2007)
* Tore Moren, guitar (2003 - 2007)
* ICS Vortex (Simen Hestnæs), vocals (1997 'session', 2005 - 2007)


* Kristoffer Rygg (Garm, Trickster G., Garm Wolf, Fiery G. Maelstrom) - Vocals (All official Arcturus releases before "Sideshow Symphonies" except My Angel)
* Carl August Tidemann - Guitars (Aspera Hiems Symfonia/La Masquerade Infernale (guest))
* Thomas Thormodsæter Haugen (Samoth) - Guitars (Constellation MCD/MLP)
* Marius Vold - Bass and Vocals (My Angel LP, All Mortem releases)
* Dag F. Gravem - Bass (On The Sham Mirrors on all tracks except track 6)
* Øyvind Hægeland - Vocals (live 2003-2005)


As Mortem

* "Slow Death (Demo)" - Self-Released (1989)
* "Slow Death EP" - Putrefaction Records (1990)

As Arcturus


* "Aspera Hiems Symfonia" - Ancient Lore/Misanthropy/Century Black (1996)
* "La Masquerade Infernale" - Misanthropy/Music For Nations (1997)
* "The Sham Mirrors" - Ad Astra Enterprises/The End Records (2002)
* "Sideshow Symphonies" - Season of Mist (2005)


* "My Angel" - Putrefaction Records (1991)
* "Constellation MCD/MLP" - Nocturnal Art (1994)
* "Constellation LP" - Nocturnal Art (1997)


* "Disguised Masters" - Jester Records (1999)
* "Aspera Hiems Symfonia/Constellation/My Angel" re-release - Candlelight Records (2002)


* "Promo 90 (Demo)" - Self-Released (1990)


* "Reconstellation" - "Bootleg recording" (1999)
* "Shipwrecked In Oslo" DVD - Season of Mist (2006)


External links

* [ Official site] (no longer online)
* [ Older Official Site with interviews, lyrics and reviews]

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