Last updated
Provinssirock 20130614 - Kvelertak - 37.jpg
Kvelertak performing in 2013
Background information
Origin Stavanger, Norway
Years active2007–present
Website kvelertak.com
  • Ivar Nikolaisen
  • Vidar Landa
  • Bjarte Lund Rolland
  • Maciek Ofstad
  • Marvin Nygaard
  • Kjetil Gjermundrød
Past members
  • Erlend Hjelvik
  • Anders Mosness

Kvelertak are a Norwegian heavy metal band from Stavanger, formed in 2007. The group currently comprises vocalist Ivar Nikolaisen, guitarists Vidar Landa, Bjarte Lund Rolland and Maciek Ofstad, bassist Marvin Nygaard and drummer Kjetil Gjermundrød. Founding member and lead singer Erlend Hjelvik left the group in 2018, [8] being replaced by Ivar Nikolaisen [9] . Kvelertak have Norwegian lyrics and their main influences are rock and roll, black metal and punk rock.

Heavy metal is a genre of rock music that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the United Kingdom. With roots in blues rock, psychedelic rock, and acid rock, the bands that created heavy metal developed a thick, massive sound, characterized by highly amplified distortion, extended guitar solos, emphatic beats, and overall loudness. The genre's lyrics and performance styles are sometimes associated with aggression and machismo.

Stavanger Municipality in Norway

Stavanger is a city and municipality in Norway. It is the third largest city and metropolitan area in Norway and the administrative centre of Rogaland county. The municipality is the fourth most populous in Norway. Located on the Stavanger Peninsula in Southwest Norway, Stavanger counts its official founding year as 1125, the year the Stavanger Cathedral was completed. Stavanger's core is to a large degree 18th- and 19th-century wooden houses that are protected and considered part of the city's cultural heritage. This has caused the town centre and inner city to retain a small-town character with an unusually high ratio of detached houses, and has contributed significantly to spreading the city's population growth to outlying parts of Greater Stavanger.

Guitarist person who plays the guitar

A guitarist is a person who plays the guitar. Guitarists may play a variety of guitar family instruments such as classical guitars, acoustic guitars, electric guitars, and bass guitars. Some guitarists accompany themselves on the guitar by singing or playing the harmonica.


The band's self-titled debut album was released in 2010 and sold more than 15,000 copies in Norway. [10] The second album, Meir , was released in March 2013. The band's third studio album, titled Nattesferd , was released on May 13, 2016.

<i>Kvelertak</i> (album) 2010 studio album by Kvelertak

Kvelertak is the eponymous debut album by the Norwegian band Kvelertak, released on 21 June 2010 through Indie Recordings. The album was released in North America on 15 March 2011 through The End Records with six bonus tracks—four live recordings from the group's BBC sessions and two demo tracks.

<i>Meir</i> (album) 2013 studio album by Kvelertak

Meir is the second studio album by Norwegian heavy metal band Kvelertak. It was released on 25 March 2013 via Sony Music Scandinavia in Scandinavia, Roadrunner Records in the rest of the world, and by Indie Recordings on vinyl. The album was produced by Kurt Ballou.

<i>Nattesferd</i> 2016 studio album by Kvelertak

Nattesferd is the third studio album by Norwegian heavy metal band Kvelertak, released on May 13, 2016. The album was recorded in Oslo, Norway. It is the band's last album with vocalist Erlend Hjelvik.


Kvelertak live at Rock am Ring 2019 Kvelertak - Rock am Ring 2019-1601.jpg
Kvelertak live at Rock am Ring 2019
Vocalist Erlend Hjelvik Kvelertak - Erlend Hjelvik - Vocals - Singer.jpg
Vocalist Erlend Hjelvik

Kvelertak were formed in Stavanger, Norway in 2007. The band's name is the Norwegian for "stranglehold" or "chokehold". [11] A demo, Westcoast Holocaust, was self-released that year. [12] [13] The band released their debut album, entitled Kvelertak , on June 21, 2010 via the Norwegian record label Indie Recordings, [14] and on March 15 via The End Records in North America. [15] The album was certified gold by IFPI in Norway for selling over 15,000 copies. [10]

Norway Country in Northern Europe

Norway, officially the Kingdom of Norway, is a Nordic country in Northern Europe whose territory comprises the western and northernmost portion of the Scandinavian Peninsula; the remote island of Jan Mayen and the archipelago of Svalbard are also part of the Kingdom of Norway. The Antarctic Peter I Island and the sub-Antarctic Bouvet Island are dependent territories and thus not considered part of the kingdom. Norway also lays claim to a section of Antarctica known as Queen Maud Land.

Indie Recordings record label

Indie Recordings is a Norwegian record label focusing on hard rock and heavy metal, founded in 2005 by Erik and Espen Røhne as a side project of Indie Distribution. In 2006 Erlend Gjerde joined Indie Recordings and Indie Distribution and together they developed the label from a "hobby project" into one of the leading independent record labels in Scandinavia, releasing gold albums by bands Kvelertak and Satyricon. Indie Recordings mainly focused on developing Norwegian acts like 1349, Kvelertak, Satyricon, Enslaved, God Seed, Keep of Kalessin, Wardruna, Audrey Horne, and Oslo Ess. But the label has also signed foreign acts such as Cult of Luna, Hacride, and Steak Number Eight.

The End Records

The End Records is a record label in Manhattan that specializes in rock, heavy metal, indie, and electronic music.

In March 2011, Kvelertak were presented with two Spellemannprisen Awards, a prestigious Norwegian music award similar to the American Grammy Award—for Best Newcomer and Best Rock Band. [16] The Kvelertak song "Mjød" was used as the end music for the film The Troll Hunter. [17]

Spellemannprisen, often referred to as the Norwegian Grammy Awards in English, is a Norwegian music award presented to Norwegian musicians. The award was established by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), an organization that represents the interests of the recording industry worldwide. First awarded in 1973, the prize honours musicians from the previous year; it is still awarded annually. The Spellemann committee, composed of members of IFPI Norway and FONO, manages the award and acts as the judge. Twenty-one categories are currently awarded and the committee may award additional honorary and industry awards.

Grammy Award Accolade by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences of the United States

A Grammy Award, or Grammy, is an award presented by The Recording Academy to recognize achievements in the music industry. The trophy depicts a gilded gramophone. The annual presentation ceremony features performances by prominent artists, and the presentation of those awards that have a more popular interest. The Grammys are the second of the Big Three major music awards held annually.

The second album, entitled Meir , was released on March 25, 2013 (March 26 in the US) via Sony Music Scandinavia in Scandinavia, Roadrunner Records in the rest of the world, and by Indie Recordings on vinyl. Kvelertak has also attracted a following from renowned artists such as Metallica front man James Hetfield who, along with the Norwegian Crown Prince Haakon, watched the band perform in San Francisco. Hetfield also posted a video on his Instagram account of him watching the band and describing the front man Hjelvik as a "savage" frontman. [18]

Roadrunner Records is an American record label that concentrates primarily on heavy metal and hard rock bands. It is a division of Warner Music Group and is based in New York City.

Metallica American heavy metal band

Metallica is an American heavy metal band. The band was formed in 1981 in Los Angeles by vocalist/guitarist James Hetfield and drummer Lars Ulrich, and has been based in San Francisco for most of its career. The group's fast tempos, instrumentals and aggressive musicianship made them one of the founding "big four" bands of thrash metal, alongside Megadeth, Anthrax and Slayer. Metallica's current lineup comprises founding members and primary songwriters Hetfield and Ulrich, longtime lead guitarist Kirk Hammett and bassist Robert Trujillo. Guitarist Dave Mustaine and bassists Ron McGovney, Cliff Burton and Jason Newsted are former members of the band.

James Hetfield American musician

James Alan Hetfield is an American musician, singer, and songwriter known for being the co-founder, lead vocalist, rhythm guitarist, and main songwriter for the American heavy metal band Metallica. Hetfield is mainly known for his intricate rhythm playing, but occasionally performs lead guitar duties and solos, both live and in the studio. Hetfield co-founded Metallica in October 1981 after answering a classified advertisement by drummer Lars Ulrich in the Los Angeles newspaper The Recycler. Metallica has won nine Grammy Awards and released ten studio albums, three live albums, four extended plays and 24 singles.

The band's third studio album, titled Nattesferd , was released on May 13, 2016. [19]

They opened for Metallica on their WorldWired Tour between September 2017 and May 2018 in Europe, and was also the opening act for Ghost on their Popestar Tour in 2017. In July 2018, Erlend Hjelvik announced that he had left the band. [20] His replacement, Ivar Nikolaisen (of Silver and The Good, The Bad and The Zugly), was announced on July 20 at their show in Fjellparkfestivalen, Flekkefjord [9] - he'd previously featured as a guest vocalist on 'Blodtørst'. [21]



Studio albums

List of studio albums, with selected chart positions
YearAlbum detailsPeak chart positions
2010 Kvelertak 3
2013 Meir 1165186420100108
2016 Nattesferd
  • Released: May 13, 2016
  • Label: Roadrunner Records,
    Indie Recordings
  • Formats: CD, digital download
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that region.




Band members

Current members
Past members



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  8. Official Release
  9. 1 2
  10. 1 2 "Kvelertak Receives Gold-Album Plaque From Dave Grohl". Blabbermouth.net . Roadrunner. July 1, 2011. Archived from the original on April 9, 2013. Retrieved July 1, 2011.
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  13. Kvelertak Replaces Helldriver At Norway's Øyafestivalen - Aug. 4, 2007. Blabbermouth.net.
  14. Blabbermouth (20 April 2011). "KVELERTAK: 'Ordsmedar Av Rang' Video Released" . Retrieved 31 May 2016.
  15. Kvelertak Interviewed In Berlin (Video) - May 29, 2011. Blabbermouth.net.
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  19. Kvelertak To Release 'Nattesferd' Album In May; New Song '1985' Streaming. Blabbermouth.net. Published on March 8, 2016.
  20. Official Release
  21. https://www.discogs.com/Kvelertak-Kvelertak/release/2363845
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  26. Archaic Magazine interview of Kvelertak Archived October 5, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
Preceded by
John Olav Nilsen & Gjengen
Recipient of the rock Spellemannprisen
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Recipient of the newcomer Spellemannprisen
Succeeded by
Jonas Alaska
Preceded by
Recipient of the metal Spellemannprisen
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Recipient of the rock Spellemannprisen
Succeeded by