Countess is a Dutch band that has been unleashing metal music upon the world since 1992, releasing fourteen full-length albums along the way.
Countess’ unique style of metal is characterized by an uncompromising loyalty to the old Heavy Metal and Black Metal traditions. The most important influences of Countess are the old Black Metal legends like Venom, Bathory and Hellhammer and traditional Heavy Metal bands like Manowar and Manilla Road.
In 2014 the band returned to the stage after a long absence, delivering impressive performances at a selection of prestigious metal festivals in the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark and Finland.
Countess currently consists of Orlok (vocals and bass), Zagan (guitars), Mortüüm (drums) and Häxa (keyboards). On June 30, the band will release its fifteenth album 'Fires Of Destiny'.

June 03, 2016

New album 'Fires Of Destiny' out June 30

On June 30 we will release our long-awaited new full-length album, entitled ‘Fires Of Destiny'.
'Fires Of Destiny' is our fifteenth full-length and features ten tracks of uncompromising metal music, blending first wave Black Metal and traditional Heavy Metal in a way only Countess can.


The title 'Fires Of Destiny' references the bonfires lit on the Kahlenberg by the troops who came to the relief of Vienna when the city was under siege in 1683; the subject of the title track.

June 01, 2016

'The Book Of The Heretic' released twenty years ago

Two decades ago today, 'The Book Of The Heretic' was released, an album that is perhaps our most controversial record: our only concept album to date, marred by a bad sound and mix yet hailed by some as the best Countess album. Time for Orlok to take another trip down memory lane and recall how this record was created.

The full album on YouTube

"After the recording of 'Ad Maiorem' I went back to writing and throughout 1995 I wrote quite a lot of songs and recorded them as demos. Then one day I got the idea for the story of the heretic in my head, so I got behind my computer and wrote the story down. I figured I could fit all the songs I had for the next album into this story, so I did. Because the story to connect the songs was written after the songs were written (which is a rather unusual way of writing a concept album, I realize that) the lyrics don’t really ‘tell’ the story very explicitly. The story of the heretic is actually quite a long one, which I wrote down in a very condensed way in only a handful of pages. If the story were written down more elaborately, like a novel, it might well comprise several books. The songs on the album all tell small parts of this long tale.

May 15, 2016

Classic tracks: Bloed In De Sneeuw

'Bloed In De Sneeuw' is generally acknowledged as the first Black Metal song with lyrics in Dutch. In this post, Orlok recalls the song's history.
"The song 'Bloed In De Sneeuw" was written in early 1994. At the time, we listened a lot to bands like Master's Hammer and Masacre, who sang in their own languages, which inspired us to also try that.

The original 1994 version, released on 'The Return Of The Horned One'

May 08, 2016

Classic tracks: Hell's Rock & Roll

'Hell's Rock & Roll' has been a popular song among Countess fans ever since it was written - especially live. In this post, Orlok takes a look at the creation of this anthemic track.

The studio version from 1997

"We were rehearsing some time in June 1996 and Zagan showed us a couple of riffs he had. We all liked them so we set about to make a song out of them. While playing the parts, we quickly came up with a song structure. The next step was, of course, writing lyrics. I thought about that for a while until the rather rocking nature of the song inspired me to name the track 'Hell's Rock & Roll'. The lyrics quickly followed: a rather cartoonish tale about the devil inspiring men to create metal. It was meant as a sarcastic response to those people who always claim that heavy metal is the devil's music: yes, of course it is! The devil made us do it!

May 01, 2016

Classic tracks: Aleidis

In this post in our 'classic tracks' series, Orlok shares his recollections of the history of 'Aleidis':
"The creation of 'Aleidis' goes back to September 1993. At the time, I used to hang out with Hammerheart a lot and one time when I was at his place he showed me a book and said there was a cool short story in there that I should read. It was a story about a man who encounters a female vampire named Aleidis and it was indeed a cool story. The story got stuck in my head for a while and I decided to write a song about it.

The version released in 1994 on 'The Return Of The Horned One'

We had just gotten a new line-up together at the time and with this line-up, we started playing 'Aleidis'. We played the song at at our first gig and in January 1994 it was released on the demo 'The Wolves Awake'.

April 24, 2016

Classic tracks: Son Of The Dragon

'Son Of The Dragon' is a song that quickly became a classic after it was released in 1997. In this post, Orlok looks at the history of the song.
"This song goes back to 1996. In March of that year, I had written a song called 'Son Of The Dragon' and recorded it as a demo. It was a mid-paced song very much in the vein of the early Countess albums. It had a good chorus but otherwise I didn't think it was all that great so I discarded it and more or less forgot about it.

The original version from 1997

April 17, 2016

Classic tracks: Fire & Blood a.k.a. Feuer Und Blut

'Fire & Blood' is a song that is rather unique in Countess' repertoire since it is the only song that has been played live in two different languages. In this post, Orlok looks back on the creation of this track.
"The song 'Fire & Blood' was written in May 1994. It was initially to be used for a project to be called The Ninth Wave (after the Manilla Road song) and originally it had lyrics by Opyros entitled 'Furor'. However, nothing came of said project so new lyrics were written for the song and it became a Countess song. We never rehearsed it back then, but decided to include it on 'The Return Of The Horned One' anyway since we really liked the song.

The original version released on 'The Return Of The Horned One' in 1994