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Emperor is, or was, a Norwegian Black Metal band, founded in 1991 by Ihsahn, Samoth and Mortiis. A number of bassists and drummers came and went during the band's existence, with Ihsahn (guitar, keyboards, vocals) and Samoth (guitar) forming the nucleus of the band. While they were officially active they released one demo, four full-length albums, a live album, and a handful of EP's and splits. In their early years Emperor was caught up in the turmoil and controversy of the Norwegian black metal scene of the early 90's, and following the recording of their first full-length album two members were arrested and imprisoned, Samoth for arson and drummer Faust for murder (no jaywalking charges were reported). Samoth was released after 18 months, but Trym of Enslaved replaced Faust, whose sentence was much longer. After this the band's criminal activities waned and they released three more albums before disbanding in 2001. The band reformed briefly in 2006-2007 for some live shows. In 2009 they released their second DVD/CD combo, a two-disc set culled from some festival performances, which they've said is "the final nail in the coffin" for the band.

The band is known for their melodic and symphonic take on black metal, bringing an element of complexity and epicness to the genre. They have been both lauded and scorned for their contributions in this regard by the black metal community. They continue to be one of the more popular bands from the second wave of black metal, having sold over half a million records since the foundation of the band. The members have had a number of other projects since the band's later days. While the band was still active Samoth and Trym started their death metal band Zyklon, while Ihsahn and his wife Ihriel began their avant-garde project Peccatum. Both have since disbanded, and Ihsahn has recently released his third solo album in the progressive metal vein. Other projects include a punk band, an ambient classical album, another death metal band, and even a folk metal album. Previous members also found renown with other projects, such as Mortiis' solo project and Tchort's band Green Carnation.

Not to be confused with The Emperor.

Last known lineup

  • Ihsahn - vocals, guitar, bass, keyboards, programming
  • Samoth - guitar
  • Trym - drums

Former members

  • Mortiis - bass
  • Tchort - bass
  • Alver - bass
  • Faust - drums

Live/session members

  • Secthdaemon - bass (2005-2007)
  • Erik Tiwaz - bass (1998–1999)
  • Ildjarn - bass (1993)
  • Einar Solberg - keyboards (2005-2007)
  • Charmand Grimloch - keyboard (1996–1999)
  • Sverd - keyboard (1993-1994)

Selected Discography

  • Wrath of the Tyrant - 1991 (demo)
  • Emperor - 1992 (EP)
  • In The Nightside Eclipse - 1994
  • Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk - 1997
  • IX Equilibrium - 1999
  • Emperial Live Ceremony - 2000 (live)
  • Prometheus: The Discipline of Fire and Demise - 2001
  • Live Inferno - 2009 (live)

Emperor Contains the Following Tropes

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