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The majority of Burzum’s catalog is drawn from a condensed period of recording that lasted from January 1992 to March 1993, when lone group member Varg Vikernes was just 19. Vikernes was then imprisoned from 1993 to 2009, and Burzum’s legend grew as Vikernes recorded two peculiar instrumental albums behind bars. When he was released, no one knew what to expect. Would Vikernes return to the sound he'd pioneered 15 years prior? Now that he had access to all instruments, would he abandon the unnerving instrumental style he'd developed in prison? He answered both questions in the affirmative. 2011’s Belus picks up where Vikernes left off in 1993. Careening rhythms, sheets of acidic guitar, exorcismal vocals: it’s all here. Belus, however, feels grander than the early Burzum albums, which is likely due to Vikernes’s personal maturation as well as newfound access to better recording facilities. Thematically it focuses on Belus, the oldest known name for the death-rebirth deity that appears throughout ancient Celtic, Norse, and Greek mythologies. In short, it’s the old Burzum sound, reinforced with epic intentions.

Customer Reviews

A Welcome Return

Whether you view Varg as a living contradiction or see him as someone who stands for what he is regardless of any other situation, it is hard to deny the music of Burzum is very intriguing and inspiring metal. Beyond the arrogance of the man lies a keen ear for true composition, combining artistic substance through personal reflection and interpretation, and the blending of multiple layers, culminating in hypnosis of the listener.
To me, Belus is more like sitting down to a storyteller, becoming entangled in their presentation, but always being a bit separated. Unlike Aske, which rips open the fabric of reality, transporting you to a completely different dimension within the first 5 seconds, Belus is easily digestible. From the first 6 listens, I have heard nothing truly groundbreaking, and it definitely lacks the dramatic tension of Aske. What Belus does contain is a beautiful assembly of layers, culminating into a hypnotic album that is pure trance in some parts. The layered quality of Belus are comparable to My Bloody Valentine's "Loveless". It is beautiful.
I think Belus is an important album, simply because it is the first true Burzum album since prison. Highly anticipated and artfully conceived, it is definitely a welcome addition to the Burzum catalogue. Truthfully, although I certainly don't rate it above Aske or Hvis lyset tar oss, it is a great album and I think it opens a new door for an even better future release. On the other hand this could also be a great finish.
The flip side is this... After listening to De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas a few more times in the past few days, I keep thinking that it's too bad Euronymous had to die for this. Varg is extremely intriguing but he completely alienated the community, with his utter naivety which evolved into stubborn arrogance. Burzum's music is good, maybe great, but I can't help but contemplate his playing of the media factoring into this equation. Burzum sounds like Bathory, and if it weren't for Euronymous, Varg would likely be just another RPG wanker. Too bad he is a part of the entertainment industry but refuses to perform...

The Count is back!

Varg is back in this full length epic. good return

He's done it!

He's come back as a more mature composer. In my opinion the album builds up to the last two drone tracks. To me The "Konklusjon" is indeed a musical conclusion of Burzum.


Formed: Bergen, Norway

Genre: Death Metal/Black Metal

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Burzum is the one-man project of Varg Vikernes (born Christian Vikernes, aka Count Grishnackh), perhaps the most notorious figure in Norwegian black metal. Although Burzum had an unpredictably experimental bent -- encompassing black metal, industrial, electronic, and dark ambient music -- Vikernes will forever be associated with his conviction for the 1993 murder of former Mayhem bandmate Euronymous. It wasn't the first time Vikernes had run afoul of the law; he had been a suspect in arsons directed...
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Belus, Burzum
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