1991: The band, at this point named Mortus, place an ad looking for a vocalist in a well-known underground metal shop in Dublin. It is answered by a young A.A.Nemtheanga and in August of 1991 the band become four and begin work on writing songs for their debut demo. It becomes obvious that the band have far more in common with the burgeoning second wave of Black Metal which is lurking in the shadows of the underground.
1992: The process of song writing continues. Many songs are discarded as the band try and find their sound. Looking back to the 80s the band finds inspiration in the old Gods like Bathory, Candlemass, Sabbat, Celtic Frost, Hellhammer and Kreator amongst others. This mixed with the sound and energy of the second wave and a growing interest in Irish traditional music, history and culture helps forge the beginnings of the band’s sound. The band also begin to play some shows in Dublin under the name Forsaken. In December of that year they change their name to Primordial.
1993: In the summer the band record their first and only demo, the now classic “Dark Romanticism”. Recorded for 50 pounds, on 8 tracks in about 6 hours it becomes a strong and serious statement of the band’s intent and they begin to spread their name through flyering and tapetrading. It goes on to sell 1200 copies and the band start to get label interest from various countries.
1994: The band keep on writing songs and in the late Summer of 1994 sign with Cacophonous Records from London. They record their debut album “Imrama” in the Winter of 1994 in the same small frontroom studio they recorded their demo. Once finished it becomes obvious the band and engineer’s limited studio knowledge renders the album unreleasable as it sounds. The band also play their first show outside of Ireland on the back of their demo in London at a 2 day festival with Bal Sagoth and Occult among others.
1995: The band remix the album in Academy Studios in Yorkshire with Mags. It now sounds like an album should, capturing the band’s energy and youthful exuberance as well as could be hoped under the circumstances. The songs, even for a debut at the height of Black Metal’s second wave, are at odds with the scene and an air of Irish melancholy permeates the atmosphere. Cacophonous finally release the CD in September of 1995 nearly 11 months after it was recorded. It sells well despite no foreign press interviews and little advertisement. The band undertake a small and now legendary mini tour of the UK together with Sigh from Japan and Hecate Enthroned. The band support Cradle of Filth and Gorgoroth at the Astoria in London. The biggest show the band has played so far.
1996: The promises of tours come and go and nothing seems to go right for the band. Relations between the members are strained and with the exception of a few shows in Ireland…
1997: …very little happens. One show in Ireland. After a huge fight in rehearsal the original drummer is thrown out of the band. The band is in a state of limbo and the future of it is in doubt. The band recruit an old school friend of A.A.N and then Geasa drummer S.O Laoghaire and resurrect themselves. Playing 2 shows later that year supporting Mayhem in the UK. The band also split from Cacophonous Records, sign with Misanthropy Records, releasing a split 10” with Katatonia limited to 777.
1998: The band drag their personal grievances to Academy in the early part of the year to record their second album “Journeys End”. With barely 70% of the album prepared it turns out to be a dark milestone for the band, restating their credentials and a further example of their individuality. It is released later that year by Misanthropy Records. For the first time the band get to speak to the foreign press. However more tours are cancelled and in the end Misanthropy themselves fold. The band make a disastrous alcohol poisoned appearance at Wacken Open Air, their first in Europe. Thankfully not many people see it and the band live and learn.
1999: Again left without a label the band move again, this time to Hammerheart Records from the Netherlands and record “The Burning Season” MCD, a new found solidity and focus is within the band and they play a small mini tour together with Hades Almighty from Norway and headline a small tour of Portugal at the end of the year.
2000: Now beginning to find their fee playing live the band undertake two small mini tours together with Thyrfing earlier in the year. The band bring Mags from Academy studios to Dublin and over 20 days record “Spirit the Earth Aflame”. The album is received incredibly well by the European press and is the fastest selling HHR album to date. The band also start to play festivals for the first time during this summer as a 5 piece as Arcane Sun guitar player Fergal Flannery joins on second live guitar. Later that year they embark on their first ever full European tour with Immortal.
2001: The band don’t play many shows in 2001 and Fergal’s tenure within the band is short lived. Replaced by M. O Floinn. The band start work on writing their 4th album. Problems begin to emerge with Hammerheart Records. The band’s first two albums “Imrama” and “Journeys End” are re-released by HHR.
2002: The band begin recording as a 4 piece in Yorkshire together with Mags. Through much stress, financial and legal problems “Storm Before Calm” is recorded. The band play a few Irish shows, a few festivals and a mini tour with Mercenary and Callenish Circle. Hammerheart are in financial trouble and drop the ball with “Storm”, the press is again excellent but the promotion and artwork somewhat lacking.
2003: The band head out on a European tour together with Rotting Christ and Enthroned. The promotion for the tour is poor to non existent but the band perform well. The band realise they have to try and find another label. They tour once again with Ancient Rites, Thyrfing and Septic Flesh among others and visit both Romania and Bulgaria with Negura Bunget and play Greece for the first time. The band goes into hibernation over the winter spending most of the time involved in legal matters.
2004: The band play a couple of shows here and there and finally agree a deal with Metal Blade Records from Germany. HHR essentially dissolves with the re-release of “Dark Romanticism” as a parting gift. The band record their fifth album “The Gathering Wilderness” in Dublin together with Billy Anderson. The band attempt to head in a rawer more live sound. The press receive the album again incredibly and sales improve in a dwindling marketplace. It also marks M O Floinns first creative contribution to the band, breaking with tradition.
2005: The Majority of 2005 is spent doing mini tours and playing festivals. The band play in some new territories like Finland and most of the summer seems to be spent sitting around in fields all over Europe waiting to play or staggering around causing trouble after playing… Again however the big tour eludes the band after not only the Xmass Festival collapses then a festival tour with Morbid Angel disappears…
2006: The band play their first show in America, a festival entitled “The Heathen Crusade”. They decide to bring the idea to Europe and do a small headlining tour of Europe together with Moonsorrow and Mourning Beloveth. They play a handful more festivals around Europe and their biggest show in Ireland supporting Opeth also. The slow and painful process of songwriting also begins.
2007: While writing songs the band play a handful of shows mainly in Germany before entering Foel Studios in North Wales during the monsoon summer. Over 2 weeks the bands 6th album and second for Metal Blade is recorded.
A. A. Nemtheanga – Vocals
Ciaran MacUiliam – Guitars
Michael O’Floinn – Guitars
Paul MacAmlaigh – Bass
Simon O’Laoghaire – Drums
2014 – Where Greater Men Have Fallen
2011 – Redemption at the Puritan’s Hand
2007 – To the nameless Dead
2005 – The Gathering Wilderness
2002 – Storm Before Calm
2000 – Spirit The Earth Aflame
1999 – The Burning Season (EP)
1998 – A Journey’s End
1995 – Imrama