Kogaionon History

The entire Kogaionon madness originates in times long gone, when a bunch of friends started a radio station with regional area coverage, the first one from Suceava, named Top '91. Given their desire to proffer informational diversity to the listeners, they have thought it might be an inspired idea, somewhere late in the evening, once a week, to dedicate an hour solely to extreme Rock music, the so called ‘blasphemous Metal’. Therefore, starting out December 1991, for over 10 years, we have had, every Monday evening, after the 11 pm BBC, this show, aired under the name ANTOFAGASTA RADIOSHOW. We have promoted through this medium thousands of bands, we have presented live and recorded interviews with and about the essential Metal events from all around the world, we have organized hundreds of interactive contests offering attractive rewards (CDs, magazines...) ... the entire playlist was intended solely for the purpose of promoting extreme underground bands and, usually, in every issue of this show 10 to 15 albums were presented. As it happened, due to family reasons, I was obliged to give up this path in the autumn of 2001, but only for a while... probably, one day, Antofagasta will be ON AIR again!!!

After four years of radio activity, in 1995, I felt the need to get more involved in supporting the underground scene and, considering my direct links with over 5.000 Metal contacts from all around the world (bands, labels, magazines, clubs or individuals), I have decided to create a printed magazine in order to help the fans into gaining access to more information. I must remind you that, back then, both e-mail and websites were… taboo, and the only communication channels were via letters, faxes and telephone calls. In fact, the entire promotion of the scene was done through the so – called flyer's that could be found in the correspondence envelopes and in the magazines, but most of them were only supporting Death Metal, a genre that was very fashionable during those times. And so, 1995 marked the advent of the first Kogaionon issue, an idea essentially based on the desire of creating a magazine that solely promotes less popular musical genres (Black, Doom, Gothic, Death, Dark, Ambient, and Ethereal).

Many keep asking me about the name choice. Kogaionon conceals the Dac mythology, the ancestors of these lands, the ones that, about 2000 years ago, were assimilated (according to historians) by the Roman Empire and later on have become Romanians. Mythology claims that Zalmoxis, the great Dac (pagan) priest from these lands, withdrew to the sacred mountain: Kogaionon. Zalmoxis is considered to be the first reformer of the pagan religion and this is the bond with Kogaionon: where is a mountain with tough stone and a circular hollow ground ... there is a priest, a new man that brings serenity to the soul... This might be the approximate translation from several languages: Latin, Greek...

Where does Metal entwine with free Dacs? There is a powerful bond from my point of view, one that requires entering a totally different mystical dimension found within the inner self, one I see no point to further present or detail, especially as I can't summon up the needed psychological comfort required for one to deepen this theme. The quintessence is that I acknowledge my ancestors and I am proud of these lands' history, the same way Northerners appreciate their runes, Odin's eye or Thor's hammer, or the druids, with their enigmatic approaches towards existence... but I'll end my divagation here. Kogaionon started its existence in 1995 and throughout time it embraced various presentation forms, at first simplistic ones, regarding both imagery and printing quality, and later on there were professional issues, with an artistic and original lay-out (for further details enter the Kogaionon issues folder).

The magazine has always pursued to offer the readers information regarding less popular, but full of potential bands, many of them completely unknown in the time of editing, bands that later on became main references within the Metal scene: LACRIMOSA, OPETH, MOONSPELL, IN THE WOODS, THEATRE OF TRAGEDY, SUMMONING… The essence of the approach has always been the subjective, honest, critical touch, one that enlarges upon the most obscure detail in every single review or the hidden motives of the one I was reporting on (band, label...). Every single interview has been preceded by an intense documentation, and every single question has been profound and laconic, many times inconvenient for the dialogue partner. Even so, many artists admitted that Kogaionon interviews were the most detailed and interesting from the multitude of questions that they have received from the media. The very same feedback came from the readers as well, something that placed Kogaionon magazine under a special aura and gave it an interesting characteristic.

Given the last decade's technological performances, I have also built a web page to let know, periodically (usually once a month), the events that I consider to be important and that echo within Kogaionon's realm. Hosting a forum or sending daily newsletter cannot enter Kogaionon's path that is to stay: underground!

Starting from 2008, a new promotional channel was put in place, this time through concert organizing. And so, in a work of expanding Kogaionon’s reach, DonisArt was formed, a non-governmental organization based in Brasov, Transylvania, which had as target the promotion of bands that have something to say within the underground scene. There were Special Evenings, unlike any other events, to which were invited all those who felt the desire of escaping from normality, of relaxing and discovering interesting bands or simply of seeing acts who until now were only available to listen to. The accent was placed on intimacy, on a small audience and a minimalist dimension, one to resonate with the fans.

This is the film of my main activities towards supporting the underground scene and I am sure there is no place for the epilogue yet.

Underground will never die!