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War (Swedish band)

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Total War
Also known asWar
OriginPärlby / Finspång / Grangärde / Stockholm, Sweden
GenresBlack metal
Years active1995–1999
LabelsNecropolis Records
Past membersJim "All" Berger - vocals
David "Blackmoon" Parland - guitars
David "Impious" Larsson - bass guitar
Lars Szöke - drums, guitars

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Total War (formerly known as War) was a Swedish black metal band, formed by Tony "IT" Särkkä of Abruptum, David "Blackmoon" Parland of Dark Funeral and Peter Tägtgren of Hypocrisy.


"War" was formed when Blackmoon attended an Abruptum recording session of "Vi Sonus Veris Nigrae Malitiaes" in Peter Tägtgren's The Abyss Studios. After the recordings, IT, Blackmoon and Tägtgren had a discussion about the Black metal scene, the murder of Euronymous and with IT's organization the True Satanist Horde. They discussed forming their own band and recording an album to give any money they would earn to the True Satanist Horde. They also discussed killing Varg Vikernes who had murdered Euronymous. As IT said, "We knew people inside the "Cunts" prison, who would have him killed for a certain amount of money, at that moment we hatched the idea of recording an album and that any money earned from it would directly go to the Hordes bank account. This is how WAR was born."[1] According to Blackmoon, "We decided loaded out of our minds, to form a band that night...a band that should be like a true fist to the face to all the theatrical, keyboards, female vocals, troll singing black metal bands that were coming out at the time".[2] Unlike those bands, War played primitive black metal with lyrics, akin to those typical of old-school black metal, mostly about Satan and war.

Controversially, War recorded and released the racist song "I Am Elite" with lyrics such as "Stand aside for the superior race. You are nothing but worms" and "Niggers and kikes, stay away." Since then, then-drummer and producer Tägtgren and Paul "Typhon" Thind (who released the band's records on Necropolis) have tried to distance themselves from the racist content. "My biggest thing is censorship and freedom of speech," said Typhon in an interview with Metalion. He claimed that All screamed in the line extemporaneously and that Tägtgren did not want it associated with him. Typhon continued, "I can't stand [racism]. My parents are Northern Indian... They experienced racism and I experienced racism... That said, I don't believe in that stuff, but... to each his own." Tägtgren claimed to be unaware of All's lyrics and that the song was not supposed to be racist, but generally misanthropic. "I didn't give a shit, and I still don't give a shit... I don't associate with the political speech that [War has]."[3]

In 1997 the band released its first EP Total War, with IT and Blackmoon on guitars, Peter Tägtgren on drums, Mikael Hedlund of Hypocrisy on bass guitar and Jim "All" Berger of Abruptum, Ophthalamia and Vondur on vocals, on Necropolis Records. They also appeared on the Bathory tribute album, In Conspiracy With Satan, released in 1998, performing the final song titled "War". In 1999, they released an album, We Are War, with All on vocals, Blackmoon on guitars, David "Impious" Larsson of In Aeternum on bass guitar and Lars Szöke, another Hypocrisy member, on drums and guitars.

The band had to change its name to Total War in 2001 as there was already another band called War, and released "We Are...Total War", a compilation of material released before. The band disbanded the same year.

Band members[edit]

Final line-up[edit]

  • All - vocals (1995-1999)
  • Blackmoon - guitar (1995-1999)
  • Impious (David Larsson) - bass guitar (1999)

Former members[edit]

  • IT - guitar (1995-1999)
  • Mikael Hedlund - bass (1995-1999)
  • Peter Tägtgren - drums (1995-1999)
  • Lars Szöke - drums (1999)


  • Total War (EP, 1997)
  • We Are War (full-length album, 1999)
  • We Are...Total War (compilation, 2001)


  1. IT interview at MySpace fan page
  2. War fan site at MySpace
  3. Black Metal: Evolution of the Cult (2013), p. 368-369

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