Friday, March 21, 2008
Darkthrone's Fenriz—A True Maverick In The World Of Interior Design
This video is from a Norwegian TV show where they ask celebrities to speak about the album that means the most to them. Darkthrone's Fenriz chose a Uriah Heap album, which is kinda interesting, but the real story here is his taste in home decor.
Note his use of a stripped sheet as a curtain. Due to the the vertical stripes, the room appears larger, and it really brings the eye when you first see it. The tabletop foosball game is an unusual choice, but it brings an sense whimsy and playfulness to the space. In a bold (and rather avant garde move), Fenriz has chosen to do away with the antiquated concept of a bed...and has simply put his mattress over the box spring. He decorates his bed with a stuffed duck, which again brings the element of whimsy that spaces like this usually lack. Regarding his choice to do away with a bed, and simply use his mattress and box spring....It's this type of unexpected genius that has always made Fenriz a bit of a maverick in the musical world. Think of "Soulside Journey" as an Ikea Malm bed.
Most of us see that bed and think "yeah, sure that would work just fine as a bed, sign me up." Similarly, most of us would say "Soulside Journey is a fine Swedish death metal album by a band from Norway". But not Fenriz. He looks at the Malm bed, laughs at it, pees on it and comes up with a better solution. If you are still with me on the comparison of beds to albums...that would make his bedding solution "A Blaze In The Northern Sky". This is my assessment, though I know a great deal of discussion has gone on in this very blog as to the validity of Darkthrones black metal "holy trinity" (as some have called their first three black metal albums). Nevertheless, we can all acknowledge that those albums were different, and received praise by many. Similarly, his choice to do away with a traditional bed will be controversial in the world of design...but will certainly get some recognition either way. As such, the comparison stands.
Lastly I'd like to quickly highlight two more pieces in the composition. The white grandma-style chair brings a touch of class and a sense of history to an otherwise modern space. Another unexpected classical touch is the knotty pine bookshelf on the back (somewhat reminiscent of French rococo decorative arts in the 18th century), which works well in highlighting the architectural detail of the room, and also works well for holding the stuffed kitty that sits at the very top of it.
So next time you're going to criticize any part of Darkthrone's musical output (be it the death metal albums, the black metal, or any of the other crap they've done...like the weird vocals in Goatlord) think about the fact that while you're just sitting around doing nothing, Fenriz is busy in Oslo helping shape the future of interior design.
ps: If you are in the mood for more Darkthrone, check out some nice highlights of videos they made for the re-relase of the their early albums here. The Nocturno Culto part is the best, which starts about 40 seconds in.