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Darkthrone Fenriz cat
Fenriz and Bugattivia Oppegård Venstr / Facebook

Black metal musician accidentally elected to town council

Despite urging people not to vote for him, Darkthrone frontman Fenriz is now stuck with the role for four years

Gylve “Fenriz” Nagell is known for many things. The Norwegian black metal legend is the frontman of Darkthrone, a radio DJ, a music journalist, and a part-time postal worker. He’s also, as of last week, a reluctant political representative for Kolbotn – a small town situated just south of Oslo. 

Fenriz secured the latter role after being called by a member of the Venstre political party several months ago. “I have reached a place in my life where I do NOT answer unknown numbers,” he recalls, sourly. “But oh that day, that fateful day, I was waiting for electricians to show up to change our spotlights from normal to LED. So I took the phone.”

The Darkthrone frontman was told by the rep that his area, Kolbotn, was on the hunt for more electable candidates. As a good deed to the town which he “cared so much about”, Fenriz agreed to put himself forward as one of the 18 potential council members, in a bid to make up the numbers. However, to ensure that he wasn’t actually elected, he provided a discouraging accompanying statement urging people not to actually vote for him. Perhaps unwisely, he also included a picture of him holding an insanely cute cat. 

“They said I would be ‘safe’ down on the list and that chances for being elected was minimal,” he tells Dazed. “(I provided) a short presentation of myself, saying that I was very busy, had little time and much work, and really needed my calendar as empty as possible.”

Unfortunately, those tactics didn’t work. Despite his lack of enthusiasm, Fenriz was elected – and will now be required to serve as Councilman for four years before he can step down. It’s a job that will be made doubly difficult by the upcoming release of Darkthrone’s new album Arctic Thunder, as well as his numerous other responsibilities. 

“I am supposed to check the town hall’s website every day to read political documents – but this is a formality,” he says of his duties. “What I have to do by law is step in at the town hall meetings and vote if the first two council members can’t make it.” He adds that there are also “a lot” of emails. 

“Let's just say that I am very enthusiastic about the area and have always been,” he continues. “(but) I really do not have time for this. I have my radio show, the Darkthrone job, the music journalist job, and I work part time in the postal industry, where I have time to hear all the promos that enable me to do the radio and journalist jobs.”

“I am always thinking of retiring – like THAT's gonna happen, I am alive to spread other peoples' music – but I think this is one of the first interests that has to go because of time issues.”