FREE HENDRIK Moebus

Hendrik Möbus Discusses his Role as a Music Producer

Far more important than his role in ABSURD, is Hendrik's work as a producer and reporter of resistance music. He himself admits, "I might be a lousy musician myself, but I know good music when I listen to it." If Hendrik ever has had a hobby that eventually dominated his life, then it is his passionate love for "underground" music. He soon discovered the role that music plays in the White Racialist youth movement. With Hendrik's political awakening came the decision to utilize the mind-altering effects of music for influencing the listener far beyond the pleasure of mere entertainment. "I observed the impact music and its 'scene' have had on my own live," Hendrik tells us, "and how it changed my way of thinking and my way of life. I decided to utilize this impact, thus controlling the direction a new way of life is taking for the young."

Hendrik was involved in the 2nd generation of Black Metal from the early 1990's on. Hence, he was sufficiently prepared to test his strategy in this genre and scene. DARKER THAN BLACK RECORDS entered the music business in late 1997. This small record company was founded by Hendrik (while still imprisoned in Germany) and also by his older brother Wolf. The first release happened to be "Fidelity Shall Triumph" by THOR'S HAMMER - a solo project of Graveland member, Capricornus. "Capricornus and I have been close comrades since 1994," says Hendrik, "and it was an honor for us to release the debut CD of his solo band." The next releases were ABYSSIC HATE "Eternal Damnation" and MJLNIR "Hinweg ber der Tore der Zeit."

How did Hendrik select the bands? "I've had a special vision about DTB Records. I wanted to produce bands that are distinguished from the Black Metal mainstream by sound, lyrics, and image. We could have signed up countless clones of popular B.M. bands, but I was after the unique bands."

Hendrik loathed the way Black Metal became a trend, exploited by major record companies and pushed by mainstream publications. Still, it wasn't easy for his company to nourish an anti-commercial attitude. "The point is," Hendrik reflects, "that you have to generate an income with a company, you will be out of business very quickly otherwise." This basic knowledge was also shared by Hendrik's many foes, in particular the German music press, which attempted to shut down DTB Records through various boycotts.

"I knew this was going to happen," Hendrik says. "It was very unfair to our bands, who suffered from this boycott most. I myself didn't care." DTB Records started a very successful mail order service in 1998, mainly focussing on "underground" releases, and such that were subject to boycotts due to "political incorrectness." We knew it would be pointless to run just another Black Metal mail order business. Hence we decided to carry the bands others wouldn't dare to sell. We figured an enormous demand for these sort of bands exists, and it delighted us to help out like-minded people by supplying them with this music," Hendrik elaborates.

The next releases on DTB Records were BARAD DR "Dunkelheit," WINTERBLUT "Der 6. Danach," and KRISTALLNACHT "Warspirit." Meanwhile, DTB Records formed a joint venture with Hate Records (now Hagal Records), the record company of the Saxonian Hammerskins. Hendrik always was an advocate of closer collaboration among youth cultures. He says, "I dislike this ghettoism of youth cultures, this petty notion of "This is my music scene, and I don't care for any other. Certain types of Black Metallers and Skinheads have so much in common, but remain ignorant of one another. I wanted to change that."

HATE RECORDS introduced Black Metal to Skinheads, while DTB Records sold skinhead music to their B.M. customers. It goes without saying that this teamwork was bound to cause suspicion in modern Germany. Certain agencies and leftist outfits became interested in DTB Records. "We started to receive more flak than usual," Hendrik recalls, "but this wasn't unpredicted. As soon as you step in the minefield called 'right-wing ideology, all hell breaks loose in contemporary Germany."

But it was more than the hysteria of German leftists and liberals that lurked ahead for DTB. Hendrik's political activism became the subject of criminal prosecution and sentences to jail time during 1998 and 1999. The State Security secured an opportunity to deal him another severe blow, and on October 6 in 1999, several dozen armed policemen, prosecutors, and plain-clothes agents raided locations all over Germany to gather evidence of political "crimes." One target of this razzia was the apartment Hendrik and Wolf lived in. The prosecutors seized CD's, photos, letters, tapes, vinyl, address books, clothes, and computer equipment. Both Hendrik and Wolf were charged with the "distribution of NS-propaganda," and it became apparent that DTB Records was under surveillance for almost twelve moths prior to the razzia.

Hendrik comment, "The systemlings performed a wild dance after the razzia, praising themselves for this 'strike against Satanism and Nazism'. This is quite laughable because they neither interrupted nor damaged the network that provides fans with the music they love. It speaks for the quality of their evidence that neither Wolf nor I have been indicted for any "crimes" even one year after the razzia, let alone having been tried in court. I frankly don't expect we ever will be!" Nevertheless, the brethren decided to shut down their mail order service and handed the record company over to trustworthy allies. Now, Shane of ABYSSIC HATE, a long-time friend of both Hendrik and Wolf, runs DTB Records. The company is thus located in Australia. Releases of ABSURD "Facta Loquntuur," TRIBUTE TO ABSURD compilation, BEKHIRA, WOLFSMOND/ETERNITY, NIGHT & THE FOG 2 COMPILATION, and SWASTYKA have been announced. The current web site of DTB Records is located at: www.dungeons-of-darkness.com. DTB Records products are available from No Colours Records (www.no-colours-records.de).

Considering Hendrik's commitment to resistance music and the agenda this music stands for, it didn't take long for him to start another outfit for his "cultural warfare," as he puts it. Ancestral Research Records, based in the United States of America, welcomed him after Hendrik was exiled from Germany in late 1999. "With A.R.R. I've switched my attention from the more old fashioned Black Metal to a new brand of Pagan/Heathen (Black) Metal," he explains. "I've become fed up with all the Satanic imagery that is so wide-spread among B.M. bands. Being a (secular) Heathen myself, I wanted to support and produce bands who seriously deal with pre-Christian, mythological elements of our Aryan heathenism. I did this with DTB Records, too, but that record label was too narrow to grant me the liberties I sought."

Apart from this desire to revive ancient times through means of modern music, Hendrik also intends to set new standards for "underground" releases. "There's this bias that 'underground' releases (i.e. CD's that don't necessarily sell through record store chains) have low-fi production and amateurish performance compared with the 'stars' of the genre. This bias I've set out to change," he says. Hendrik intends to sign up bands with professional performance and to provide them with studio production and CD artwork that matches the high budget products of the mainstream. He scouts the scene in Eastern Europe and Russia in particular, knowing that there are ambitious artists there eager to work on his terms. "It's hilarious," Hendrik points out, "to see the differences between, for example, Scandinavian and Polish Black Metal when it comes to things like recording budget, when there isn't any difference music-wise. Many Polish bands even play better!" To record an album in a Swedish studio can be as expensive as $60,000.00, while the same production is available for 10% of this amount in a Polish studio. After 10 years of the New Wave of Black Metal, many of the popular bands from Norway became "self-repeating, overrated dimwits," is Hendrik's opinion.

With A.R.R., he wants to force another generation of bands into the spotlight, bands capable of crafting astounding music and of delivering an ideological agenda through it. "Their music will open wide the ears of fans, so that our message can be planted in their minds," he says. Hendrik is well aware of the psychological implications of his strategy. "Yes, indeed," he admits, "this is more than art for art's sake. This is propaganda that might very likely alter the mindset of the young listeners and fans." In his perception, music can achieve what books achieved centuries ago. "It's to be world-shaking. As soon as fans actually imbibe the agenda of their stars, a new religion is born." To this aim A.R.R. will contribute with several high caliber releases, like the recently released THUNDERBOLT/KATAXU split CD, or like the following releases which are recorded: May the Hammer Smash the Cross by THOR'S HAMMER, "Vargstrike" by PANTHEON, "Summon the Age of Supremacy" by GODLESS NORTH, "Asgardsrei" by ABSURD, "True Sons of Darkness" by THUNDERBOLT, and "Lunar Poetry" by NOKTURNAL MORTUM. Other bands scheduled to record their albums in the future are ODHINN, KATAXU, WOODS OF FALLEN, and HELDENTUM. "It's my intention to turn A.R.R. into the leading outfit for Pagan/Heathen Metal worldwide," Hendrik concludes. The current website of A.R.R. is www.ar-records.com. A.R.R. products are available from Resistance Records (www.resistance.com).

Hendrik's experiences with Black Metal, and his active engagement in the music business, provided him with invaluable insight in both the genre and the scene. It was just like him to share his knowledge with less informed people and to put to use his manifold convictions, when he joined the writing staff of the German magazine RockNord (www.rocknord.de) and the American magazine Resistance (www.resistance.com). Hendrik used the pseudonym Hagen von Trouje (HvT) to sign his interviews and reviews. He explains, "I use aliases for a certain reason. Many people would be distracted from the fruits of my work if they knew who was responsible. Unfortunately, there are people who just can't be objective with anything I do; they are so overwhelmed by enmity and envy that they will throw dirt at what ever bears my name. Besides this, however, I just like to be a force unreckoned with."

November, 2000



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It is possible to take a second, more penetrating, look at people who have the reputation for villainy and evil, and sometimes the second look makes for a reappraisal of the naughty ones. - John O'Hara

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