Sowing New Seeds, Strengthening Old Roots
Wardruna began to take shape in 2002 as a project of musician Einar Kvitrafn Selvik (known from his work as a drummer with metal bands Jotunspor and Gorgoroth.) The band became a place where Einar’s practice of Norse paganism and runes could be combined with his passion for music. In 2007, the project attracted popular attention after it was featured in the documentary True Norwegian Black Metal. Finally, the debut album Gap var Ginnunga was released in 2009. Each album will feature music written to evoke the spirit and meaning of eight runes; the first album featured Hagal, Bjarkan, Thurs, Jara, Laukr, Kauna, Algir, and Dagr.
Focusing on the cultic musical language of the Pagan arts of galder, seidr and the daily acts of the cultic life, mixed with impulses from Norwegian/Nordic folk music and music from other indigenous cultures, Wardruna aims to create a portrait of each rune it features. Recordings often take place outdoors, in locations chosen to resonate with the specific rune in question, using human voice and instruments, including deer-hide frame and ceremonial drums, mouth harp, clove/hoof rattles, bone flute, goat and cow horns, Hardanger fiddle, bowed lyres, and tagelharpe (“viking fiddle”). Other, more elemental inputs include natural sounds such as wind in trees, water over stones, crackling fire, employed to enhance the nature of the rune being portrayed.