Remote is the North, and long are its nights. Solitude is every man's friend and doom is his lullaby.
Named after Siberia’s northernmost city, home of a famous heavy metal smelting complex, Norilsk is a doom-death band from Gatineau/Ottawa, Canada. Characterized by slow and crushing riffs, death growls, icy melodies and atmospheric arrangements, its music draws inspiration from the 1990's doom-death scene, while incorporating a heavy dose of eclectic and contemporary influences. [Read More]
New release: Beyond the Mountains
May 13, 2022
On May 13, Hypnotic Dirge Records will release a brand new doom-death offering from Norilsk, entitled Beyond the Mountains. Released on the tipping point at the end of the world, this new EP speaks to the fragile overlap between the nostalgic old world and a dark new chapter in history. It will include a brand new song, “Beyond the Horizon,” along with a cover of Officium Triste’s “Intro Officium Triste (Pt II / Mountains of Depressiveness.” The artwork by Timur Khabirov is a tribute to OT’s original EP, and captures Norilsk’s contemporary approach on doom-death.
In 2019, Netherlands melodic doom-death godfathers Officium Triste were celebrating their 25th anniversary. The band invited a number of artists around the world to participate in a tribute album, where Norilsk contributed with opening track ‘Intro Officum Triste (Pt II) / Mountains of Depressiveness.’ With its desolate coldness and relative austerity, the cover song and its lyrics represent the stripped-down essence of the genre, which remains as relevant 25 years later.
‘Beyond the Horizon’ was composed in the spirit of the 90’s classic doom-death bands, and recorded during the same session. The song is about the Inuit High Arctic Relocations in Canada, a mid-20th Century tragic event that occurred when Canadian authorities forced a number of northern communities to relocate in the High Arctic, a ‘place of darkness,’ and deliberately slaughtered their sled dogs. This displacement had deep impact on the Inuit traditional way of living, and still has ongoing consequences in northern communities today. Acknowledging the extremely dark context of 2022, including the mountains of mental illness brought by the pandemic and the forced displacement brought by the war, Canadian doom-death band Norilsk is releasing this digital EP as a symbol of support, and hope for better things to come.
Beyond the Mountains will be released digitally by HDR, and will be made available on all streaming platforms on May 13, 2022. It can be purchased from the Bandcamp page.
Nic Miquelon: vocals, bass
Nick Richer: drums
Tom Hansen: guitars
Matt MacIvor: guitars
Recorded in 2019 at Wolf Lake Studio
Mixed by Mike Bond at the Bond Cave
Mastered by Brad Boatright at Audiosiege
Artwork by Timur Khabirov based on an Officium Triste 7inch artwork
Track 1 was written and composed by Nic M.
Track 2 was written by Pim Blankenstein and composed by Officium Triste. Recorded and adapted with the kind permission of Officium Triste.
Rhythm guitars on this EP played by Nic M / Lead guitars played by Tom Hansen.
We have updated our merch store and added new items: we have a new color tshirt designed by Abacrombie Ink, and a zip-up hoodie designed by Mark Riddick. All quantities are in stock (our inventory is up to date) and ready to ship. Canada Posts rates are fairly expensive and complicated, but if we charge you too much we will automatically refund you the difference after we bring your order to the post office.
Visit our store here
New music videos
February 24, 2019
Here are two music videos we released in late 2018, from our latest mini-album "Weepers of the Land."
Video and audio excerpts taken from Secrets of Chinatown – The black robe, Northern Films Ltd. (1935)
“The Way” is the first excerpt of Norilsk's 2018 release Weepers of the Land. In a surprisingly short length for the genre, the band delivers the spirit of death and doom, while paying tribute to one of the earliest occult movies filmed on Canadian soil.
Weepers of the Land
Filmed and directed by Erik Labossiere and Kristin Wagner. Costuming by Beki Stilborn. Shot at the Creative City Centre in Regina, SK (organized by Catherine Abenstein). Features Ivy West and Violet Rayes (of The Pink Champagne Girls), Donny Pinay and Nate Cradock (of Altars of a Grief), Beki Stilborn (Archaical), Josh DeCorby, Gabrielle Kyrylchuk, and Kaden Phillips. Masks created by Merimask.
Funeral rites and its iconography have a long history of weepers, or weeping figures – sad, heavy characters mourning the deceased. Co-written with Longhouse‘s Joshua Cayer whom also added guest vocals, the track is about what stays behind after someone vanishes and is a nod to the expression ‘keepers of the land,’ most often used in an indigenous and/or environment-related context, while referencing a less glorious side of history.
Joshua Cayer explains: “When we were developing the concept of the track, I had just finished listening to a podcast hosted by Indigenous journalist, Connie Walker, called Missing and Murdered: Who Killed Alberta Williams. Aside from the obvious painful subject matter, what really struck me was the guilt expressed, and carried for all these years, by those closest to Alberta Williams – What if I answered my phone that night? What if I turned around sooner? What if. As a father of two little girls, I couldn’t begin to imagine the deep sorrow that is carried by survivors of our Indigenous women and girls that go missing, or are murdered. I tried to give voice to just a fraction of what those feelings of pain, guilt and failure might feel like to a father or a mother, with the hope of creating better awareness and empathy for the issue of Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls in our country.”
Capturing the song’s dark and heavy atmosphere, the video was directed by Erik Labossiere of Wikked Twist Films, whom was given artistic freedom to develop the concept behind its visuals. Showcasing its monumental proportions and slow pace represented both a challenge and an opportunity to transfer the epic extreme doom metal song onto the screen as Labossiere approached it from the perspective of a short movie.
Erik Labossiere comments: “When creating the video concept for “Weepers” I wanted to create a narrative that could symbolize an array of current issues and motifs. With the core message of corruption and assimilation, I wanted to tell a story that could identify with any situation of oppression and abuse. I also wanted to create characters that each themselves expressed a reaction to these issues. Some see the plight of our world and react with indifference, with silence, with reinforcement, and some push to create hope. In my opinion, there is only one monster in this video, and everyone else exists within the grey, and it is up to the viewer to reflect on this and question which role they play.”
New release: Weepers of the Land
November 1st, 2018
On October 12, Norilsk’s new opus Weepers of the Land was officially released on Hypnotic Dirge Records. Below are two short videos: one is an album teaser, and the other one is equal parts album highlights and video documentary. It includes interview with the band, and trivia about Weepers of the Land. The videos were crafted by Erik Labossiere of Wikked Twist Films.
"Weepers of the Land" should be viewed as a companion to last fall’s “Le passage des glaciers” as the material was written and recorded during the same time period, but with that being said there is a different feeling - seemingly of a more abrasive and desperate nature - conjured on this album’s material.
“Weepers of the Land” consists of four new compositions and a cover song (Mylene Farmer - Tomber 7 fois) which is exclusive to the CD version of the album for a total playing length of 32 minutes. The album will be presented in a 4 panel digipack with artwork from William Blair Bruce (with the kind permission of the Art Gallery of Hamilton).
Orders and bundle options available from Hypnotic Dirge Records include:
- Weepers of the Land, Digital download
- Weepers of the Land, Digipack CD (includes bonus track), sticker
- Weepers of the Land and Le passage des glaciers, 2 cd bundle and sticker
- Trails of Doom - Full Norilsk Pack: Weepers of the Land cd, Le passage des glaciers cd, The Idea of North cd, tshirt, patch, and sticker
UPCOMING ALBUM: Weepers of the Land
August 29, 2018
Coming off the heels of their latest full-length album “Le passage des glaciers”, this fall the Canadian Death-Doom act Norilsk returns with a collection of new material linked in concept with its previous full-length while also showcasing Norilsk’s more collaborative and multi-faceted nature. It retains the band's signature sound developed on its two full-length albums, and brings forward further openess to an array of doom-related influences.
The new mini-album, entitled “Weepers of the Land”, will be released worldwide by Hypnotic Dirge Records on October 12, 2018 (pre-orders will start in a few weeks). The new album is made up of four new compositions as well as a Mylene Farmer cover song (Tomber 7 fois), previously released in Russia on a limited edition compilation CD, and completely remixed. The new compositions include collaborations with other Canadian musicians including Damian Smith (Altars of Grief), Joshua Cayer (Longhouse), Ben Forte (North East Bistro, TGRE), and long-time collaborator Mort Marion (Outrage AD, Blood Moon Knights).
“Weepers of the Land” should be viewed as a companion album to “Le passage des glaciers” as the songs were written and recorded during the same time period. The album will be presented in a 4 panel digipack with artwork from William Blair Bruce (Canadian painter, 1859-1906).
Left: artwork by William Blair Bruce (Canadian, 1859-1906), The Phantom Hunter - 1888, oil on canvas, Art Gallery of Hamilton; Bruce Memorial, 1914. Used with kind permission.
Right: band photo by Nick Richer, 2018.
New music videos
April 30, 2018
Over the winter, we released two new music videos for our latest album "Le passage des glaciers."
La voie des morts
Filmed and co-directed by Erik Labossiere / Wikked Twist Films, and Nick Richer / HVY One Productions. The Wikked Twist Films segment of "La voie des morts" features Amberyl Watson as the protagonist and Sarah Cameron as the "Ribbon-trap woman." Shooting was assisted by Kristin Wagner and filmed on a cold day in Qu'Appelle, Saskatchewan. The HVY One Productions segment features Nic Miquelon and Nick Richer, and filmed in the perpetual winter setting of various locations in the Gatineau Park, Quebec.
La voie des morts (The Way of the Dead) is a winter dirge, a black premonition accompanying the dead season. Without a doubt the fastest track on the album, it starts as a cold funeral march, before turning into a blackened procession. The video was co-directed by Wikked Twist Films, located nearby Regina, and 2700 km-away HVY One Productions, of Ottawa's area.
Erik Labossière of Wikked Twist Films brought his universe of the macabre and the morose to develop a short story revolving around a few characters. Erik comments: “Shooting only a portion of a video and working with footage shot across the country was a unique situation and combining two narratives to create one full story was even moreso. Norilsk is very good at both defining their concept and allowing room for creativity on my part, and I really enjoyed expanding the universe we created in 'La noirceur intérieure' with some references and correlations to that video. I feel that a music video is an opportunity to give a visual palate to an auditory experience, and creating a powerful or intriguing narrative to accent the sound is a best of both worlds scenario. I love shooting this type of concept. A silent film narrated by only the music and message of the artist is such a rewarding and expansive collaboration.”
Nick Richer of Norilsk and HVY One adds: “We've known Erik for a few years now, as we toured with his bands Nachtterror and Altars of Grief, and he directed our previous video 'La noirceur intérieure.' Co-shooting a video is quite a nice feel when you have no idea what the other will come out with. I had high expectations from Erik after seeing his work, and he completely exceeded them. Working with him was a pleasant experience and is looking great for the future.”
Filmed and directed by Erik Labossiere / Wikked Twist Films., and starring Sarah Cameron and Damian Smith.
As thick and heavy as permafrost, "Le passage des glaciers" follows in the footsteps of 2015's The Idea of North, but expands the sound considerably. From a sludgy slab of doom-death, the band has carved further into the icy influences of dark metal, to emerge with a blackened doom-death album with frozen melodies, misty atmospheres, and reflective lyrical passages.
NEW MERCH: Norilsk Shirt [Designed by Misanthropic Art], Norilsk Patch, Norilsk Sticker
November 10, 2017
Our label Hypnotic Dirge Records is now taking pre-orders for "Le passage des glaciers" as well a new limited Norilsk shirt, and some larger packs for the true doom fanatics.
(You can also order the CD and shirt on its own through the Norilsk Merch Store)
"Le passage des glaciers" follows in the footsteps of 2015's The Idea of North, but expands the sound considerably. From a sludgy slab of doom-death, the band has carved further into the icy influences of dark metal, to emerge with a blackened doom-death album with frozen melodies, misty atmospheres, and reflective lyrical passages. This album is presented in a 4 panel digipack with a 12 page booklet including lyrics in French as well as English translations.
Alongside the new album "Le passage des glaciers", a new shirt has been commissioned and designed by Misanthropic-Art (Ultha, Uada, Pillorian, Hooded Menace) specifically for this album. The shirt is printed on standard Port & Co brand shirts and is available in sizes Small through XXL. Printing was handled by the always reliable and detailed
Forest Passage Printing
An unmerrowed 12.5cm x 7.5cm patch has also been made in limited quantities for this album. The patch is only available as part of the larger Norilsk packs and is limited to 50 copies at this time.
Finally, some all-weather 6.25cm x 5.5cm Norilsk logo stickers have been printed, which will be shipped out with all Norilsk related orders while quantities last. These stickers were printed by Sticker Guy! who is known for its quality. These stickers will last for years!
You can also order a pack which includes Norilsk's debut album "The Idea of North", which we released in 2015. Much like the upcoming "Le passage des glaciers" album, the debut Norilsk album was also released in a 4 panel digipack with a 12 page booklet with lyrics in both French and English!
Option One: Ultimate Norilsk Pack
-Norilsk - Le passage des glaciers CD
-Norilsk - The Idea of North CD
-Norilsk Shirt [Misanthropic Art]
UPCOMING ALBUM: Le passage des glaciers
October 25, 2017
Canadian doom-death band Norilsk is set to release their latest slab of music on November 24, on Hypnotic Dirge Records. Incorporating a greater amount of cold melodies and delving further into forward-thinking structures, this new album has equal amount of unorthodox conventions, dark mysteries, and deadly hooks. As lyricist Nic Miquelon mentions, “Anyone who has followed us so far and enjoyed our musical landscape might be carried away into the distance with Le passage des glaciers. There is something of a personal journey in there, something that had to be experienced and mourned, and something that swallowed us whole when creating this.” While Le passage des glaciers is not a concept album, this new musical chapter has been written around the theme of mourning and departure.
The artwork is signed by Sam Ford, who designed the artwork for the previous album The Idea of North. Sam worked closely with the band to develop an artistic continuity, yet a distinct visual atmosphere to the album, and integrating symbolism and referencing Canadian art.
The album includes eight tracks, mostly in French, for a total duration of 44 minutes.
1. Midnight Sun
2. Le puits de l'oubli
4. La voie des morts
5. Ghosts of Loss (Passage part I)
6. Noirceur intérieure
7. L'érosion (Passage part II)
The track "Namolennye" is now streaming on Bandcamp.
Regarding the track, bassist / vocalst Nicolas Miquelon says:
“There is a slightly more intricate approach to this album, from a song structure to a stylistic point of view, as exemplified in 'Namolennye.' This song was composed on an 8-strings bass guitar, which brings a non-conventional colour, and allows different kind of arrangements than on the previous album. As for the song title, this unique Russian word ('намоленная'), roughly meaning 'imbued with prayers' and most often applied in the context of religious icons, happened to be surprisingly convenient to illustrate the notion of estrangement and an alternate state of reality. The song ends with a quote from Pushkin, translated in French, about dying where you feel you belong.”
© Norilsk - 2022