Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Timeless Frost-ing

This past weekend, the guys and I watched Until the Light Takes Us, an awesome documentary about the aesthetics and infamy of Norwegian black metal. For those not in the know, this includes murders, church burnings, and making necklaces out of your dead friends. This includes, above all, being an EVIL MOTHERFUCKER (really NSFW, but crucial):

Okay, so not like that. But it IS equally exciting. I kind of wish I'd seen the movie before we planned our film series on identity performance, or I would have insisted on its inclusion. According to the elaborate mythology surrounding black metal, these guys are basically committing hate crimes, but it seems to be more out of an escalating game of one-upsmanship more than any strongly-held ideology. I don't know enough about the history of metal (Laine is much more knowledgeable on this subject) to give this much other context, but I assure you that the film is worth your time.

Immortal is one of the bands that, you know, didn't kill people. Although a few of their members have gotten in trouble after leaving the band, they (as far as I can tell) seem more involved in painting their faces than going around being dicks. Which brings us to Joel.

Today marks the birth of Freakin' Joel, my boyfriend's roommate and one of the most adorable people I know. To celebrate his existence, I made him a cake. Joel is fan of many things, but the three that spring to mind first are God, sandwiches, and metal. Of these, I thought the last would be the most fun to illustrate in confections. I've been wanting to try this tutorial for a while now, so I thought I would do my best at representing the guys of Immortal...

...in chocolate.

To achieve this, I melted three shades of chocolate (semisweet, semisweet+white, and white) and used them to trace a reversed version of the above image in three stages.

Here is the image, topped with parchment and taped to a clipboard:

Here is Stage 1:

While these were chilling in the freezer, I baked Joel's favorite, yellow cake. Then I moved on to Stage 2:

And after they'd had time to chill again, Stage 3:

While they were chilling one more time, I topped the cake with chocolate frosting, then made Shaun take pictures of my outfit. If you are going to bake a metal cake, it's important to wear attire that is practical and thematic. Here's what I picked:

Dress: Hand-made vintage
Socks: Xhilaration
Shoes: Where via Urban Outfitters

I can only wear this dress so often, for obvious reasons.

No one really knows what kind of creature this is supposed to be...

...or why these pockets are here.

But, hey--take a look at these SHOES!
For the first time, there is a pair that fit my (giant) feet and not Laine's.
I'm not trying to rub it in, but usually it's the

And then, the unveiling/flipping/placing on the cake!

Not too bad for a first effort, eh?

If I had the time or inclination to do this over again, I would probably add more white chocolate to the midtone color, and I would try to figure out some way to prevent the bleeding that happened between colors here. Still, I'm pretty happy with the final results, and I think the birthday boy was, too.


  1. This is the best thing ever. I want a METAL cake for my birthday. The movie was fun. I thought they were going to interview Ivar Bjornsen, though, for some reason. They should have. I got to see Enslaved in 2000 at Milwaukee Metalfest. Along with Opeth (before they blew up!), Macabre, Katatonia, Children of Bodom, and Anathema, and I don't remember who else. Metalfest was always a ripoff, and everyone says their performances were awful, but I always had a good time. The only video I could find from that is here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=01GgTkYegYo

    Also, you need this: http://i254.photobucket.com/albums/hh82/kingmickeyx16/Icons/immortal.gif

    And this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q3uyq7YK4XI

    And you should tell Joel to check out my bff Sean's band Graves of the Endless Fall

  2. Also, also, also, the movie was waaaay long. I guess I'm not 4 rill METAL enough to be totally enthralled by endless shots of Fenriz just sitting around. The best part by far was the "performance art" with Frost cutting up a couch and himself.
    And I would definitely call those hate crimes. The impetus for most of that was totally anti-Semitic and homophobic.

  3. You're right about the hate crimes, of course. What I was trying to say was basically that at some point (maybe not for the main dudes, but others) it's more about being the evilEST than any other obvious motivation. I'm interested in people who assume negative identity traits precisely because they are negative.

  4. Yeah, I see your point, but I think with these specific guys (mostly Varg Vikernes)the motivation for trying to be the evilEST in the first place is some race and homophobia-based rage (even in the case of Faust). There were copycat church burnings, but the film didn't really delve into that. The assumption of negative identity traits (which everyone does, right? It's created in opposition) is, again, in these specific cases, a result of hate or, at the very least disdain for what they conceive of as "society." It's basically the kids who got picked on in high school never growing out of it and attempting to intellectualize or rationalize their bitterness - "If you can't join 'em, beat 'em!"
    They didn't "fit in" for whatever reason, so they come up with arguments that place them as superior, and thus justified in their violence. These are dudes who probably <3 Ayn Rand.


  6. Okay, I'm changing the title of my thesis to
    "Ayn Rand: EvilEST or High Priestess of False Metal?"

  7. This is fucking hard core awesome.