What do we do with trolls?

I’m a big fan of modern Scandinavian folk music, and am often listening to great bands like Sorten Muld and Hedningarna. I don’t know the language, though, so I’m usually just grooving on the sound … so it’s greatly appreciated when a Swede translates a Hedningarna song for me. And, as it turns out, this particular song is very appropriate to blogging.


  1. Trent1492 says

    I understand that Dwarves do not wash their axes between decapitation operations. I know this because I read it in the Daily Telegraph.

  2. inkadu says

    Let us sing it once again:
    The best fighters around
    Are dwarves, no doubt about it

    I don’t know if they’re the best fighters, but they’re certainly lousy wizards.

  3. inkadu says

    how is it that there aredwarves?

    Are you referring to the piratical sea faring arrr-dwarves?

    They do exist, but there numbers are small… all that axe-swinging does a real number on the rigging.

  4. alex says

    inkadu: Are you referring to the piratical sea faring arrr-dwarves?

    ah yes, a wee bit of mis-typing. of course i meant aardvarves – dwarves of the ant-eating variety.

  5. says

    I’ve been a big fan of Hedningarna since highschool when one of my teachers played a cd of their music in class. I hadn’t heard of Sorten Muld though, I’m going to have to check them out.

  6. says

    Modern Scandinavian folk is phenomenal. I discovered the Rough Guide to Scandinavia back in the Spring, and just acquired my first Garmarna CD (“Vengeance,” fantastic album) the other week. Hedningarna was next on my list.

    I really didn’t expect you to beat me to it, though I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, given the rampant godlessness in Scandinavia…

  7. says

    String up the trolls and turn them into tasty sausages.

    I understand they have an earthy taste that plays well with grape jelly.

  8. False Prophet says

    The only Scandanavian music I seem to listen to these days is metal, and yet the lyrics seem strangely similar… ;-)

  9. says

    I teach Norwegian (and thus can understand Swedish, Danish), so if you want to know more, let me know.

    Am listening right now to your talk on Networks and Neighborhoods / U of MN

  10. Owlmirror says

    how is it that there aredwarves?

    Are you referring to the piratical sea faring arrr-dwarves?

    No, no, no…

    Bit of a typo there.

    How is it that there are DWARVES+PYGMIES?

  11. says

    Modern Scandinavian folk is phenomenal.

    Seconded, thirded, and even fourthed. With extra trolls for seasoning. ;-)

    Sorten Muld is not famliar to me, have to check them out — thanks for the tip!

  12. Nan says

    Anyone who likes Garmarna and Hedningarna should try Gjallarhorn, too.

    Finnish metal, e.g., Nightwish, is interesting, too. Very operatic. Definitely keeps me awake while trapped in the cubicle at work.

  13. says

    Isn’t the best way of dealing with trolls is to expose them to sunlight, and then cart off their petrified bodies to use as lawn ornaments?

  14. dwarf zebu says


    I was hoping for a different sort of troll. You know, the kind PZ feeds to the commenters.

    Now that I know the rules of the game, I have go back and re-read “Thud!”

  15. MH says

    I’m just listening to Hedningarna’s “Fire”, and Gjallarhorn’s “Grimborg”. If I hadn’t known they were (respectively) Swedish and Finnish, I would have said they were both Indian! Maybe there’s something wrong with my ears (faulty Babelfish, perhaps). Interesting stuff though. Thanks for the recommendations.

  16. Tomas says

    Scandinavia must seem more interesting from Morris. If you want to know the modern scandinavia, read Arne Anka. He is the poet of the modern scandinavian man, screw the viking mysticism.


    “Det finns inget som gör kvinnor så vackra som alkohol och stängningsdags.”

    – There is nothing, that makes women as beautiful as alcohol and closing-time

    “Att leva är som att borsta tänderna… Det ska göras varje jävla dag.”

    – To live is like brushing teeth. It has to be done every fucking day.

    “Ibland undra man om man lever i ett land eller ett skämt”

    – Sometimes you wonder is you are born in a country or a joke (about Sweden)

    and there is my motto:

    “Att tänka innan man talar är som att törka sej i röven innan man skiter”

    – To this before one speaks is like wiping ones arse before one shits.

    Now THATS scandinavian!

  17. HP says

    Big Daddy Don Kane sez: What does “groovy” mean?

    Hey, cats, dig the square!

    If you gotta ask, Dad, you’ll never know.

    Ell-seven, man. L7.

    /* shakes head, walks away */

  18. Schnee says

    Hey PZ, if you like Nordic folks, you should give Triakel a listen – it’s a project by the singer of Garmarna, Emma Härdelin, Kjell-Erik Eriksson (Hoven Droven) and Janne Strömstedt (former Hoven Droven member). Quite nice really!

  19. RedMage13 says

    I can’t believe that in a post about music and trolls that no one has brought up Dethklok’s Awaken. Heresy.

  20. Johannes Eldblom says

    I’m just gonna go ahead and push some of my favourites among swedish contemporary folk, hope noone minds and that maybe someone finds something they like :)

    Hoven Droven:

    And more traditional,

    and Frifot (if you can find their album “frifot”, it’s amazingly good, imho):

  21. LeeLeeOne says

    What people may be looking for….
    NORDIC ROOTS 1, 2, 3, and etc.

    Was introduced to this years ago.

    You will find a few of your aforementioned artists but quite a few more!


  22. BicycleRepairMan says

    Another Norwegian here, its so cool that you’re listening to Scandinavian bands, PZ. Perhaps its not so strange, Minnesota is one of those states with lots of Scandinavian emigrants isnt it? Anyway, check out “Gåte” if you are into this kind of stuff. they are Norwegians, and they mix the old with the newer kind of punk-rock stuff, and if you like the punk’ish element, you could always go even more crazy with “Bøyen Beng” which is mostly punk, but with a touch of folk in there (violins and stuff)

    PS: “å” is pronounced as the o in “on” and “ø” is pronuonced as the u in “Run”.

  23. efp says

    I’ve been a fan of this stuff for a while too (thanks to the Nordic Roots anthologies). They used to do a festival in Minneapolis every spring. I was never able to make it… but I’ve caught a few of the bands on individual tours. I wonder if they still do it? I also highly recommend Väsen, Frifot, & Hoven Droven. I’ll have to check out Gjallarhorn.

  24. Mooser says

    Back where I come from, we have a name for people like Prof. Myers! Yes we do, we call them skeptics! Yup, that’s what we call them. Cause they’re skeptical, that’s what they are.

  25. David Marjanović, OM says



    and “ø” is pronuonced as the u in “Run”.

    In what kind of English???

  26. David Marjanović, OM says



    and “ø” is pronuonced as the u in “Run”.

    In what kind of English???

  27. windy says

    In what kind of English???

    I think you need to ask, in what kind of Norwegian?

    I’d say å as in “law” and ø/ö as in “hurt”, but YMMV.

  28. Samwise says

    Tomas, are you sure that’s the right way around?

    Think : speak :: wipe : shit? I’ve always found it works better to think before speaking, rather than after.

    Oh, and of course, to think while shitting.

  29. Matt says

    PZ, do yourself a favor and check out some music played on Hardanger fiddles, hardangfele in Norweigian (I think). They have sympathetic strings under the fingerboard which vibrate with the played notes….they’re a physics lesson in a box. Just wonderful. And music played on them (there’s lots of it in your neck of the woods) is great stuff.

    I wonder if hardangfele players call their instrument an axe?

  30. William Gulvin says

    Uff da! All this Scandahoovian riot-rock makes me hafta go raid England!!!

    I’ve see/heard most of the Northside bands in concert many times over the years. Mind-blowing! All of them. Hoven-Droven is the straightest looking and hardest rocking band of all time. Frifot was one of the most profound and amazing shows (and recordings) I’ve ever seen/heard in a lifetime of concert going. And Väsen takes me to another world. (Better still, eat your hearts out, I’m co-producing a concert by them this April in Harrisburg, PA . Be there!) Then there is Annbjørg Lein, and Ale Möller, and JPP, and, and . . . The whole Northside catalog (where you can find tour listings) is not to be missed either in concert or live.

  31. Tomas says


    Yes, it is the right way around in the quote anyway. Now that I read my post again it seems like the motto is my invention. Its not. Its the Arne Anka again.

  32. David Marjanović, OM says

    After reading this post and the one just before it occurred to me that someone who specialized in chasing out trolls would be an axeorcist.

    Molly nomination.

  33. David Marjanović, OM says

    After reading this post and the one just before it occurred to me that someone who specialized in chasing out trolls would be an axeorcist.

    Molly nomination.

  34. says

    Since you like Scandinavian folk music, you should check out the music of Annbjørg Lien (http://www.grappa.musikkonline.no/shop/displayAlbum.asp?id=10300). Lien is a Norwegian “fiddler” who has recorded many of the older Norwegian folk songs. The songs aren’t modern, but she is, and it comes through in the listening.

    You mentioned Fargo in a recent post. The theme to Fargo is variations on the Norwegian folk song “Den Bortkomne Sauen” (The lost sheep). Lien has a nice version (fiddle and pipe organ) on her album (link above).

    Accept this as my contribution to your must-read blog.