|Members||Knjaz Varggoth |
|Past members||Saturious |
Nokturnal Mortum are a Ukrainian black metal band from Kharkiv. They were one of the founders of the Ukrainian black metal scene .
Nokturnal Mortum was originally formed as a death metal band called Suppuration in 1991, then turned to black metal and changed name to Crystaline Darkness but "had to change the name back in 1993/94 to Nocturnal Mortum because there already existed a band with that name in Western underground". They have stated this about the current name and spelling: "We changed a letter so that we wouldn't find a band with the same name again like it was the case with Crystaline Darkness". Nokturnal Mortum gained recognition in the underground Black Metal genre with the release of their debut album Goat Horns, which had two keyboardists play on the album (often on the same song) and for mixing traditional Ukrainian folk influences with BM. They focused heavily on atmospheric BM with themes common in classic nature-romanticism, often inspired by regional or local ancient folklore, mythology or journeys set in pagan landscapes. Early album art usually always depicted vast forests, swamps, sunsets, desolate mountains in wintery nights, and so on.
The band's first albums were released through The End Records and (as licence pressings) by Nuclear Blast, but the label and the band separated at the time of the album releases of NeChrist and Lunar Poetry, both releases suddenly containing political support to neo-Nazi and White supremacist causes. The band began to change from being in the more popular extreme metal scenes to becoming one of the leading groups in the National Socialist black metal scene in Eastern Europe. Varggoth himself said about the conflict with the label: "We had a contract with The End Records but it was broken. We have different points of view. They didn't like our policy, we didn't like the way they do business. They owe us some money. That was enough for a conflict."
Underground artist Igor Naumchuk (Lucifugum) had close ties with Nokturnal Mortum—who dedicated the album To the Gates of Blasphemous Fire to him—until all relations ceased due to ideological disagreements. Despite this, both bands are still likened to one another.
In autumn of 2014, band frontman Knjaz Varggoth published a statement declaring that he and Nokturnal Mortum had begun to distance themselves from politics in order to avoid rumors concerning his personal views and band ideology; however, the band played live at the Neo-Nazi festival Asgardsrei in December 2016, and have played at several other right wing festivals since.