Kvelertak (Norwegian for "stranglehold" or "chokehold") is a six-piece heavy metal band from Stavanger, Norway, formed in 2007. The group comprises vocalist Erlend Hjelvik, guitarists Vidar Landa, Bjarte Lund Rolland and Maciek Ofstad, bassist Marvin Nygaard and drummer Kjetil Gjermundrød.
The band's self-titled debut album was released in 2010 and sold more than 15,000 copies in Norway. The second album, Meir, was released in March 2013. Kvelertak have Norwegian lyrics and their main influences are rock and roll, black metal and punk rock.
Kvelertak was formed in Stavanger, Norway in 2007. A demo, Westcoast Holocaust, was self-released that year. The band released their debut album, entitled Kvelertak, on June 21, 2010 via the Norweigian record label Indie Recordings, and on March 15 via The End Records in North America. The album was certified gold by IFPI in Norway for selling over 15,000 copies.
In March 2011, Kvelertak was presented with two Spellemann Awards—a prestigious Norwegian music award similar to the American Grammy Award—for Best Newcomer and Best Rock Band. The Kvelertak song "Mjød" was used as the end music for the film The Troll Hunter.
The second album, entitled Meir, was released on March 25, 2013 (March 26 in the US) via Sony Music Scandinavia in Scandinavia, Roadrunner Records in the rest of the world, and by Indie Recordings on vinyl. Kvelertak has also attracted a following from renowned artists such as Metallica front man James Hetfield who, among Norwegian crown-prince Crown Prince Haakon, watched the band perform in San Francisco. Hetfield also posted a video on his Instagram account of him watching the band and describing the front man Hjelvik as a "savage" frontman.