"some music was meant to stay underground..."


Formed: 1987
From: Oslo, Norway
Last Known Status: Active

Latest Arcturus News

Below is our complete Arcturus news coverage, including columns and articles pertaining to the band. Some articles listed may be indirectly related, such as side projects of the band members, etc.

Note: We began associating news directly with bands in late 2003. Therefore, earlier band news may not be listed on this page.

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Arcturus Pulls Out Of ProgPower USA Festival

European progressive metal act Arcturus has announced that it has pulled out of the forthcoming ProgPower USA XII festival. The band posted the following statement online;

"Arcturus still suffer from hibernation sickness, and due to outdated parts we deeply regret to inform you: We are canceling ProgPower USA. This lack of maintenance is entirely our own fault, and sincere apologies go out to the promoter and all ticket holders, especially those of you who had planned to travel far."

Festival promoter Glenn Harveston has since announced that Arcturus is being replaced with former Emperor frontman Ihsahn. A statement from Harveston is available below.

"I have no idea what the hell that [Arcturus] statement means. I'm not going to try and figure it out either, as I have wasted enough time and effort on that 'band' already. In the meantime, I would like to personally thank Ihsahn for taking the slot. His professionalism in this situation is greatly appreciated."

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Arcturus Comments On ProgPower Festival

The first confirmed exclusive reunion show of Norwegian avant-garde metal act Arcturus has been announced for the ProgPower USA XII festival, set to take place September 14th -17th, 2011 at Center Stage in Atlanta, Georgia.

Arcturus vocalist I.C.S. Vortex adds: "ProgPower USA 2011 will host the first Arcturus concert in five years. This is our first performance in the United States and since we're all retarded, probably the last."

Additional details on the 2011 edition of the ProgPower USA festival can be found at this location.

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More Bands Announces For ProgPower 2011

Italy's Eldritch has announced an appearance at the 2011 edition of the ProgPower USA Festival in Atlanta. The festival is set to take place from September 14th - 17th, 2011, and the currently announced lineup is as follows:

Dream Evil
Mob Rules
While Heaven Wept
Red Circuit
Creation's End

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ProgPower USA XII Lineup Announced

The 2011 edition of the ProgPower USA festival line up has been revealed. The ProgPower USA XII event will include the first onstage performance from Norwegian progressive metallers Arcturus as well as performance from Therion and many others.

Therion's Christofer Johnsson commented by saying:
"ProgPower USA is definitely one of the better organized festivals we have attended and was a highlight on our first U.S. tour. We feel honored to have been invited again, and will prepare something special for the event, as this is the one and only chance for our US-fans to see us live in their country,"

ProgPower USA XII confirmed bands:

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Borknagar Taps I.C.S. Vortex As Touring Bassist

Norway's Borknagar recently parted ways with bassist Erik Tiwaz (aka Tyr). The band has now announced I.C.S. Vortex (Arcturus, ex-Dimmu Borgir) will be stepping in to handle both bass and vocal duties on the upcoming Borknagar tour dates due to vocalist Vintersorg having other commitments. Borknagar issued the following statement:

"The band is currently working on touring plans for the future. Due to private commitments Vintersorg is unfortunately not able to join the band on the road for the moment being. Because of this, I.C.S. Vortex will step in to the fold to handle vocal and bass for upcoming live activities."

Guitarist Øystein G. Brun comments: "As stated in several interviews the last couple of month’s it’s our firm intention to bring the band’s live activities up a notch in respect for all our fans. There is just no way we can dismiss all the requests we get all over the world. We are currently working on some really interesting touring plans, but unfortunately our brother in music Vintersorg is not able to come along for the moment being due to private commitments. So Vortex being a previous member and always a good friend of the band, it feels great to have him back in the fold in order to execute these plans. Also, I would like to express my deepest admiration for Vintersorg’s open minded and supportive attitude, embracing the idea to pull this off with Vortex in his absence- to make this a genuine and worthy solution for Borknagar.” More...

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I.C.S. Vortex Announces New Projects

I.C.S. Vortex, former bassist for Dimmu Borgir and currently with Lamented Souls, has issued the following announcement about his upcoming releases:

"First song is recorded for the I.C.S Vortex album and the rest will follow during this winter. Release early fall 2010. Studio is booked for Lamented Souls in March and release date is set to late fall 2010. And for those wondering about the revival of Arcturus, I was told by an alien that 2011 is a lucky number..."

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Quadrivium Streaming Arcturus Cover Online

Norwegian metallers Quadrivium have issued the following update about streaming a cover of the Arcturus track "Wintry Grey" on their MySpace page:


"We have been quiet for some time now. Its time for some news.

"First we want to tell you that we have strengthened our lineup with a new vocalist that will be sharing vocal duties with Lars. His name is Attila Bakos and he hails all the way from Hungary.

"His voice will be a powerful addition and will most certainly take us to the next level. What better way to introduce him by presenting our contribution to a Arcturus tribute cd that has been released. We covered Wintry Grey and are pretty pleased with the results. We came in late in the process and had to work fast, but its alright.

"Attila did all the vocals on this one as Lars is busy with Myrkgrav these days (the new album will be killer!) We wanted to keep it cold and we feel that we managed that.

"Check out the song on our Myspace site or check out the entire tribute cd here.

"This cover song will be our last stint in that world of music. Almost all the writing for the new album is done and it will be something new and different for sure. Still metal though! Even more than before actually!

"Until next time then, keep your antimatter safely out of the reach of children!"

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Skitliv Signs To Season of Mist

Season of Mist has announced the signing of former MAYHEM frontman, Maniac’s new black/doom band SKITLIV, to their roster.

Together with members of SKITLIV, Maniac will be present at a listening session at this year's Inferno Festival in Oslo, which will showcase "Skandinavisk Misantropi." The album will receive its first public hearing this Thursday, April 9th, at 20:30 in the "Anneks" room of the Rockefeller venue, where attendees at the Inferno Festival will be able to meet Maniac and the guys. More...

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Jeff Wagner Writing Book On Progressive Metal

Bazillion Points Publishing has announced the first definitive book on the elusive world of progressive metal, written by esteemed metal crusader and prog manic and THE END RECORDS staff member Jeff Wagner. Scheduled for release in Autumn 2009, the book will detail the common movements of pioneers like OPETH, WATCHTOWER, VOIVOD, ATHEIST, DREAM THEATER, PSYCHOTIC WALTZ, CELTIC FROST, SIGH, and FATES WARNING — metal bands who have gone against the tide of tradition and conservatism. Linked by a desire to push heavy metal forward, these varied bands with a couple hundred other black sheep form the hard-to-pin-down category of "progressive metal."

Beginning with the hugely influential mid-1970s efforts of Canadian band RUSH, Wagner's book explores the shared lineage of prog rock and metal. He unfurls the huge tapestry and examines the sounds and styles created during the genre's 40-year history, including: the "Big Three" — QUEENSRŸCHE, FATES WARNING, and DREAM THEATER; extreme prog pioneers VOIVOD and CELTIC FROST; Norway's post-black metal avant garde (ULVER, ARCTURUS, VED BUENS ENDE, BEYOND DAWN, etc.); and of course the huge global movement of Big Three-worshippers in the 1990s and the leaders that emerged (AYREON, SYMPHONY X, etc.). The vastness of what can be considered "progressive metal" has proven to be one of the most viable, malleable forms in all of modern music. More...

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Mayhem Drummer To Guest On New Nidingr EP

Norwegan black/thrash metal act NIDINGR is currently working on a new EP, titled "Wolf-Father", which will feature drummer Hellhammer (real name: Jan Axel von Blomberg; MAYHEM, WINDS, ARCTURUS, DIMMU BORGIR, THE KOVENANT). More information will be made available soon.

NIDINGR guitarist Teloch recently completed a European tour as a session member of the Norwegian black metal outfit GORGOROTH.

NIDINGR's limited-edition vinyl release "Sodomize the Priest" (2006) featured a rehearsal recording from 1996 on side A, and various tracks from 1998 on side B.

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Maniac And Friends Team Up On Side Project

Former MAYHEM vocalist Maniac has teamed up with an eclectic mix of Oslo-based musician friends in a band called TEAM ARMSTRONG, which is set to play Oslo's Elm Street on May 1. A rehearsal track entitled "Oslo City Babylon" can be heard on the band's MySpace page.

According to Maniac, the band has actually been in existence for some time now, with various members getting together whenever the occasion arises - the line-up being quite fluid, and musicians coming and going depending on commitments at any given time. The idea behind the band is to give the musicians, who are all active on the Oslo scene, the opportunity to come together and, not to put too fine a point on it, "have a good time"; playing what they feel like, without the constraints of genre or their own bands.

Aside from Maniac himself (under the name of Pastor Maniac), the current line up, and the one that will play at Elm Street, consists of Tore Moren (CARNIVORA, ARCTURUS, ex JORN), Ivar The Blanco (SILVER, HAPPY DAGGER), Anton (Anton Ruud and The Long Way Home), Hoegh, Dan Thunderbird (Backstreet Girls, RatCats) and Bent Metal (Gatecrashers, Borderline Bitches).

Maniac is writing and recording for his own band SKITLIV, and has recently completed recording guitars and vocals for a track on the soon to be released album from Sweden's DEADWOOD. Three un-mastered tracks from the forthcoming SKITLIV album can be heard on the band's official myspace page.

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Arcturus Issue Statement On Split

Norway's ARCTURUS have updated their website with the following message:

"A lot of rumours have been going around after our gig in Melbourne.

Simen (Hestnaes, aka ICS Vortex) opened the concert with the words 'Welcome to the last Arcturus show ever.' This is a decision we made some time ago. We all have a lot of things going on in our carreers and our lives, and therefore cannot find the time to continue working with this band.

We are humble and grateful to all the people that have supported and loved us over the years."

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Headline News

Arcturus Rumored To Have Split Up

Rumors are running rampant that Norwegian extreme metal band ARCTURUS has decided to call it quits following the completion of its recent Australian tour. According to unconfirmed reports from fans that attended ARCTURUS' March 31 concert in Melbourne, ARCTURUS vocalist Simen Hestnaes (a.k.a. ICS Vortex, DIMMU BORGIR, ex-BORKNAGAR, LAMENTED SOULS) announced from the stage that the gig was to be the band's last.

An Australian ARCTURUS fan by the name of Vanessa posted on the band's official MySpace page an e-mail that she claims to have received from the group's drummer Jan Axel "Hellhammer" Blomberg (also of DIMMU BORGIR and MAYHEM) confirming the breakup. In the e-mail, Hellhammer purportedly wrote, "Yes, we are splitting up. There is no more time for all of us as everyone [is] extremely busy. But there has been some killer 16 years or so. See you next time with MAYHEM or DIMMU, and those bands [are] not likely split up any time soon."

ARCTURUS has yet to issue an official statement confirming the breakup.

ARCTURUS' latest album, "Sideshow Symphonies", was released in September 2005 via Season of Mist.

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Virgin Black To Support Arcturus In Australia

After an almost three year absence, Virgin Black will begin an international touring schedule at home in Australia as guests on the highly anticipated and exclusive Arcturus tour in late March. The dates will coincide with the release of "Requiem - mezzo forte", the centre piece of the band's 3-album requiem mass.

Tues. 27th March - H.Q. Adelaide, S.A.
Thur. 29th March - Club Phoenix, Brisbane, QLD
Sat. 31st March - The Evelyn, Melbourne, VIC

Virgin Black will proudly utilise the talents of Mark Kelson (The Eternal) as session guitarist alongside Samantha Escarbe.

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Arcturus To Tour Australia In March

Norwegian extreme metal band Arcturus will embark on a tour of Australia in March 2007. The details of the trek, dubbed "Shipwrecked in Australia", are as follows: More...

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Season of Mist Delays Several Deluxe DVDs

Season of Mist has had to postpone the releases of 4 out of 5 special deluxe Metalpak DVDs. These are:

ARCTURUS "Shipwrecked in Oslo"
CONFESSOR "Live in Oslo"
RED HARVEST "Harvest Bloody Harvest"
TSJUDER "Norwegian Apocalypse"

The first deluxe Metalpak DVD, MACABRE's "Tales of Slaughter and Slaying", will come out on July 17th.

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Arcturus Bassist Hurt In Accident

According to a posting on ARCTURUS' web site, the band's bassist Hugh James Mingay recently "had an accident and a vertebrae has been affected. He's going to be well, but has to rest for several weeks. If he can't play the forthcoming three live shows in Norway, the shows will not be cancelled, as someone has been found to play the bass on the three gigs."

So-called "manufacturing issues" have caused the postponement of the ARCTURUS DVD, entitled "Shipwrecked in Oslo" (Season of Mist), to May 22 from the previously announced April 24. The disc contains footage of the band's September 24, 2005 appearance at the Sonic Solstice Festival at Rockefeller in Oslo, Norway.

ARCTURUS' current lineup includes DIMMU BORGIR bassist/vocalist Simen Hestnaes (a.k.a. ICS Vortex, ex-BORKNAGAR, LAMENTED SOULS) on lead vocals. Hestnaes had previously performed vocals on three tracks and written the lyrics for one song on ARCTURUS' 1997 album, "La Masquerade Infernale".

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Arcturus' "Shipwrecked in Oslo" DVD Postponed

Due to manufacturing issues, the release of the ARCTURUS DVD, entitled "Shipwrecked in Oslo" and initially scheduled for April 24th via Season of Mist, hasd been postponed to May 22nd.

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Age of Silence Prepare To Record New Album

Avant-garde/prog/metal act AGE OF SILENCE, the Norwegian band featuring Lazare (BORKNAGAR, SOLEFALD), Hellhammer (WINDS, ARCTURUS, MAYHEM) and Eikind (KHOLD, TULUS), among others, have issued the following update on the progress of the songwriting sessions for their upcoming album:

"If things have been quiet in the AGE OF SILENCE camp for a while, that is because we have been busy with other musical projects lately!

"We are soon getting closer to preparing for the recording of a new album. All the material has been ready for quite some time, and in order to progress even further we are taking a step backwards with this new release.

"Musically speaking, we are not going to reveal much, but it will be darker, heavier, yet still containing the usual AGE OF SILENCE brilliance! In other words, expect a masterpiece that will undoubtedly set a new standard in ‘extreme-fusion’ for years to come."

In other news, AGE OF SILENCE have launched a new official forum at this location.

AGE OF SILENCE released a three-song EP entitled "Complications – Trilogy of Intricacy" on The End Records last fall.

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Dimmu Borgir's Simen To Guest On Dagoba CD

DIMMU BORGIR bassist/ARCTURUS frontman Simen Hestnaes (a.k.a. ICS Vortex, ex-BORKNAGAR, LAMENTED SOULS) has recorded a guest appearance on two songs on the sophomore album from French metallers DAGOBA, tentatively due in February 2006 via Season of Mist. "Shawter's vocals mixed with Vortex's voice sound amazing!" the band write on their web site.

DAGOBA's follow-up to their self-titled debut album was recorded at Antfarm studios in Denmark with producer Tue Madsen (THE HAUNTED, HATESPHERE, MNEMIC). The group made name for themselves in France, where their EMI-distributed debut was a chart success. The buzz quickly spread, and step by step, the rest of Europe started responding (DAGOBA opened for MACHINE HEAD in Brussels, FEAR FACTORY in Amsterdam, and did a North European tour with SAMAEL; more recently they opened for KORN in France).

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