Norweigan Tragedy, A Metalhead’s Take
Several weeks have passed since the tragedy that happened in Norway and I am still trying to get my head around as to why it happened. We now know that Anders Behring Breivik who carried out the atrocity was on the far right of the political spectrum and felt that he was saving his country from a takeover by Islam. Since the 1980s, there has been a more of a polarisation of political thought in Europe with more people going to the extreme right or left. However, for me this doesn’t wholly explain why it happened in the first place.
The main reason I am still struggling with this is because I went to Norway in 1980, not as a tourist, but as a member of the US Marine Corps, where I took part in a large NATO operation. I spent eight days walking the Norweigan countryside and getting rained on. September is the rainy season in Norway and it rained six days out of the eight I was there. But that’s not important, what is important is how extremely friendly the Norweigan people were. On the first night, we captured some Norweigan home guard as part of the war games and they in turn offered us all cigarettes and whisky. I don’t smoke, but did enjoy the latter. This was the case, the rest of the time. We would be in a position and the locals would come out and give us sweets, coffee and even beer. On the last day, as we marched back to the ship, we went past an all girls school and they came out and cheered us as we passed. This is my problem, I can’t understand how such a thing happened in a country where the people are so friendly.
Now you are probably asking yourself, what has this got to do with heavy metal? The answer is quite simple, there is a lot of metal in Norway. The first band that comes to mind is TNT who have been going since the 1980s and it was listening to their album “Realised Fantasies” that gave me the inspiration for this post. TNT have put out 12 studio and two live albums, but it was their first two “Kights of New Thunder” and “Tell No Tales” that are the most memorable for me. That is why I mention them quite a bit in Rock And Roll Children and give an account of the concert I saw at the Marquee in London.
Last year at the Bloodstock Festival, I had the opportunity to see another impressive band from Norway, Leaves Eyes. Of all the acts that were unknown to me before that weekend, Leaves Eyes is the one that impressed me the most. It was the way the operatic, melodic voice of lead singer, Liv Kristine and the more raw vocals of Alex Krull came together with the rest of the band. I suggest you check them out, you won’t be disappointed.
Of course, there are other metal bands in Norway like Angel, Bankok Babes, Wild Side and Hush to name a few. So, if you are trying to make sense of the tragedy, which befell Norway, then listen to a Norweigan metal band, I’m sure it will help you see things in a new light.
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This entry was posted on August 14, 2011 at 9:33 pm and is filed under 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music with tags Books on music, Classic Rock, hard rock, Heavy Metal, Heavy Rock, History, Intolerance, Leaves Eyes, metalodyssey, Michael D. LeFevre, Norway, Rock And Roll Children, The 1980s, TNT. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.