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jools green
10th January 2018
Jools Green


Swedish Symphonic Black Metal band Zornheym's debut album, 'Where Hatred Dwells and Darkness Reigns' is a singularly superb piece of work in its own right and my album of 2017.

The opus developed in the mind of concept master Zorn for the best part of a couple of decades and was created over twelve months once the catalyst was set into motion.

The overall idea of this concept, based around a lunatic asylum, has always been the intention to delve into greater depths and encompass more multimedia than the usual Black Metal symphonic release.

The music was accompanied by an in-depth booklet containing case files of the patients, cinematic videos and an ongoing project still for all the tracks, in effect expanding and in many ways reinventing the idea of "the concept" which even encompasses the band members as characters within the asylum.

Now the next stage has come to fruition, digging a little deeper into the asylum and its inmates and staff in the shape of a graphic novel.


It's a remarkable endeavour, a fifty-one page, full colour, gloss finish, visual extravaganza brought scarily to life by the remarkable talents of Anu Bring, graphic artist extraordinaire.

She has not only understood implicitly the ideas Zorn has been aiming to express in musical form, the horrors of the 'Institution of Zorheim' where "Submission is key", the message over the entrance gate, she has delved further into his ideas, extracting from the given text drawn up by Zorn (Thomas Nilsson) and Alan McCahey the darkest and at times most gory of horrors.

This appears in Technicolor glory all set on a black background for added sinister effect, and together they have expanded in detail much about the lives of the inmates.


I could go into great detail about the deeper revelations of the lives of the six inmates covered in this volume, but rather than give a full spoiler alert I'll give a few tasty visual glimpses. If you love the album half as much as I do this is an essential read, it sheds so much light as well as darkness onto both the album and the characters.

Oh, one final thing I will say, as I had fearfully expected, there seems to be a much darker and more sinister side emerging to the owner of the institution, Dr Bettelheim…don't take my word for it, go read it yourself and make your own mind up.

The graphic novel of 'Where Hatred Dwells and Darkness Reigns' is only available from the band's online shop.




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