Treading the arboreal pathway through the backwoods of black metal;
BTF IV includes specially commissioned essays, interviews and illustrations, by animists, philosophers, artists and musicians, including: an essay on panpsychism as a possible answer to the climate crisis; a philosophical-historical overview of the relationship between black metal and the forest; a magical-realist account of a sylvan trip gone wrong; an in-depth interview with Rune from Nordic Animism, whose project looks to Scandinavian folklore and customs for “hidden animist knowledge” and more respectful ways of living with other subjectivities.
The symbolism of the primstav (a calendar staff used by the agricultural societies of old Scandinavia), runs through the issue. Its seasonally-based, cyclical view of time hints towards a worldview which was embedded in its environment, and which placed man as part of - and at the mercy of- nature, rather than above it.
Contributors: Lotte Brown, By the Spirits, Crown of Asteria, Drukfout, Feral Season, Una Hamilton Helle, Hedda Hassel Mørch, Hawthonn, Rune Hjarnø Rasmussen, Invunche, Helge Kaasin, Edvard Munch, Necrofier, Alexandra Uppman, Cathy Ward
Edited by Una Hamilton Helle and Lotte Brown Published by Het Bos Antwerpen Supported by the Norwegian Arts Council Designed by Tom Sewell
Table of Contents
Entering the forest Una Hamilton Helle Wherein time moves in spirals, and petroglyphs speak of the coming Fimbulwinter
Interview — Feral Season (US) In which the scorched trails of wildfires are retrodden through the range of light
Nordic Animism Excavating traditional knowledge with Rune Hjarnø Rasmussen Wherein a Dane exhumes the remains of lost lore and discovers life therein
Interview — Invunche (NL) In which the three-legged figure of Chilote folklore guards the secrets of a warlock’s cave
Interview — Crown of Asteria (US) In which mythology mixes with magical intent in the Michigan mist.
Gjennom den Onde dunkle Skog Helge Kaasin Wherein the roots of Norwegian Black Metal are found to burrow deep into the soil of history
Interview — Necrofier (US) In which synchronistic tales are told of a child-eating demon and a tiger-eye ring
Researchers — a Cliffhanger Lotte Brown Wherein the moon is swallowed, mud is tasted and the sound of bone hitting stone echoes through the forest
Interview — By the Spirits (POL) In which a Silesian mountain is ascended and a path of ancient magick traversed
Panpsychism as environmental philosophy Hedda Hassel Mørch Wherein the vast, shadowy land of consciousness is explored and the limits of Western thinking probed
Interview — Hawthonn (GB) In which the duo go searching for the wyrd sonic signatures of Britain’s edgelands
Further artworks by Lotte Brown (BE), Drukfout (BE), Una Hamilton Helle (NO), Edvard Munch (NO), Alexandra Uppman (BE), Cathy Ward (GB)