Originally released in early 1996 on the pivotal No Fashion label, DARK FUNERAL's debut album,The Secrets of the Black Arts, was an incredibly powerful first full-length statement. From its iconic cover art on down to the sharp, powerful production by Peter Tägtren at Abyss Studios, it could be easily argued thatThe Secrets of the Black Arts was THE defining record of '96, when black metal was climbing out of its sensational days and etching a new language into the wider metal landscape. DARK FUNERAL were there, armed with an arsenal that was shockingly fast yet still exceptionally memorable. Even with all that blastbeaten aggression, there still existed a wealth of atmosphere to the album, proving that the band were no one-trick ponies.
Alongside contemporaries Dissection and Marduk, DARK FUNERAL are among the most important Swedish black metal bands ever. In fact, when one merely mentions the phrase “Swedish black metal,” thoughts immediately turn to their name: since their formation in 1993, DARK FUNERAL quickly came to define the shocking sound of cryogenic melody and cruelly blasting fury. Though their six albums to date have been patiently parceled out over a considerable amount of time, their works endure to this day and have influenced countless bands over the past 20 years.