Dissection is (was?) a heavy metal band from Sweden. Their style is often described as being a mix between death and black metal. Personally I think melodic black metal is the best genre to classify them.
The man behind Dissection is Jon Nödtveidt. He formed the band in 1989 in after participating in several other Swedish metal bands. He knew several of the members of Mayhem and other Scandinavian extreme metal bands, and their influence showed in Dissection's music. Unfortunately, like several prominent black metal musicians, he wound up being thrown in the pokey after he was involved in the murder of an Algerian homosexual. He's set to remain there until 2004, at which point he is planning to reform the band with Bard Faust from Emperor. Fear the Return!
While many black metal bands rely on the so-called wall of sound method of musical composition, Dissection instead crafted extremely well-composed and uniquely evil melodic symphonies. Nödtveidt's ear for melody is exceptional, and his lyrics are several cuts above typical black metal lyrics. Despite what you may think of his criminal past, you can't deny that he is a very skilled musician.
Dissection released two full-length albums before Nödtveidt's murder conviction: The Somberlain and Storm of the Light's Bane. In my opinion, Storm of the Light's Bane is one of the best metal albums ever released. A live album, Live Legacy, was released in 2003. Recorded prior to Nödtveidt's arrest, it seems to have been released to revive interest in the band as the end of his sentence draws nearer. Another album, The Past is Alive, is a collection of their earlier demo material.