The only daughter of Finarfin and Eärwen, born in Aman during the Years of the Trees long before the First Age.

When the First Age began Galadriel traveled to Middle-Earth with her four brothers and lived in Beleriand among Thingol's (her relative, Eärwen was Thingol's niece) people. This is where she met Celeborn, her future "husband"/life mate with whom she would have her only (Tolkien did not explicitly say this was their only child but he mentions no other(s)) child, Celebrían.

Galadriel was also the bearer of Nenya, one of the Three Rings of the Elves.

After the destruction of Beleriand in the War of the Wrath (circa I 583) most of the Noldor in Middle-Earth returned to Aman. Galadriel was forced to remain behind due to her involvement in the Kinslaying and all that. After Amroth's passing in III 1981, she and Celeborn became the rulers of Lórien. They both reigned there until Galadriel passed on to The Undying Lands with Frodo, Bilbo, Gandalf, et. al. on 29 September III 3021.

The name "Galadriel" means "radiant garland (hair)."

(see J.R.R. Tolkien and read The Lord of the Rings)

Readers of The Silmarillion know that oh-so-pure-and-gentle Galadriel actually wasn't. She "travelled" to Middle-Earth as a leader of the Noldor, using the swan-ships of the Teleri, after having killed many of their builders in the Kinslaying at Alqualonde when they refused to hand over their ships and join the Noldor rebellion.

Galadriel is also the name of a doom metal band from somewhere in the Slovak Republic, who, despite their name, have almost nothing to do with the works of J. R. R. Tolkien apart from the odd song here and there inspired by various moments from his oeuvre.

The main driving force behind the band is one Dodo Datel, who sings (well, black metal style) and plays bass guitar, along with a woman named Sonia "Witch" Kozakova, who, if the inlay card to their albums is anything to go by, is Dodo's partner. The rest of the band seems to be rather fluid, though names that crop up repeatedly include Tomax Gabris, and Dr Victor. Indeed, for their 2004 album World Under World "Witch" seemed not to be present, leaving Datel as the only band member left from the beginning.

So, what do they play? Erm, well, their sound is extremely dark and atmospheric, almost hallucinatory at times. Very often they adopt a melancholy gothic metal type sound with raspy, black metal-type male vocals and clean, soaring, slightly mystical if you will, female vocals. That's not to say that "Witch" is anything like Tarja Turunen of Nightwish by any stretch of the imagination, nor is Dodo Datel anything like Dani Filth or Shagrath or other black metal vocalists in terms of quality; however, the pair of them complement each other nicely. Furthermore, on their most recent album, they have started to incorporate various aspects of electronica into their work, which sometimes works, and sometimes not.

Now on to lyrics. A heavy influence on their works are undoubtedly the novels of Robert Holdstock, and songs such as "Strong Against the Storm" capture the mood of such novels quite well. There's also inspiration from historical events - to wit, "The Battle by Wogastisburg" and "1848"; and, of course, that gothic metal standby, general morbidity, which is where they show some of their more musical influences as well. One commentator has mentioned that the end of their song "The Grave is the Last" resembles uncannily another song by My Dying Bride, though on that I cannot comment, not having heard much of the latter collective's works. There's influences from Moonspell also; Galadriel's song "Dark Erotica" reminds me rather of the Portuguese band's song "Butterfly FX," though without the video involving tribadism and war paint. Indeed, there's one song on every album which feels rather like a gothic love duet between Dodo Datel and "Witch."

One song that stands out from their entire set is the industrial groove "Sex in the Underworld." This short, heavily electronic song has apparently been tipped to engender a whole new direction for the band, though on that we can't comment until the new album appears in 2006.

Now, the only problem I have with Galadriel is that their stuff is particularly hard to come by in the UK - and indeed, at all. Indeed, as far as I know, only their last two albums, From Ashes & Dust, and World Under World are available actually to buy - even directly from the publishers themselves, and even that can require navigating the German Amazon site. For their earlier stuff you may have to surreptitiously download it from Soulseek or another P2P site. If, however, you feel that breach of copyright amounts to theft (it's not even remotely close, from a legal perspective, but that's a whole other node) they have, apparently, released a compilation consisting of stuff from their first three albums, but good luck trying to find that! In my opinion, though, it's From Ashes & Dust that's their best album, followed by The Mirror of Ages.

If you want to "try before you buy," so to speak, on their website at they have full-length tracks available to download freely; even if they are only at a nasty 56kbps bitrate, they're still moderately listenable.

One final point - I don't know when or if they play live outside the former Eastern bloc, so I can't comment on their live performances.


  • World Under World, 2004

  • From Ashes & Dust, 2002

  • Oblivion, 2000

  • The Mirror of Ages, 1999

  • Empire of Emptiness, 1997

  • Compilation - Empty Mirrors of Oblivion, 2005

    Other appearances - Tales from the Underground, a Blind Guardian tribute CD, on which they cover the song "The Bard's Song - In the Forest."

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