former Mayhem frontman Dead’s skull fragment sold for $3,500
As trve fans of Norwegian black metal know (or anybody who has watched the documentary “Until The Light Takes Us,” which by the way is streaming on Amazon Prime), legendary Mayhem frontman Per Yngve Ohlin (aka Dead) was obsessed with death — the man who may have been the first black metal musician to wear corpse paint, would reportedly bury his clothes underground before shows to make them smell like a grave, sniff a dead crow before shows, throw pig heads into the audience at shows, and frequently cut himself — and he ultimately took his own life in 1991, slitting his wrists and throat before shooting himself in the head with a shotgun. As the legend goes, his roommate and bandmate at the time, Euronymous — who has been accused by friends and bandmates of encouraging Dead’s suicide — discovered the body which he took photos of before calling police. One of those photos showed up as the cover of the “semi-official” 1995 live album Dawn of the Black Hearts. It has also been claimed that he sent necklaces with bits of Dead’s skull to friends, and Euronymous claimed — probably falsely — that Dead took his life because he was bummed that the scene was now full of poseurs. His behavior after Dead’s death caused bassist Necrobutcher to leave Mayhem (he rejoined in 1995, two years after Euronymous was murdered by brief Mayhem member and Burzum leader Varg Vikernes, who is already out of jail for that crime and the burning of churches).
As MetalSucks pointed out, a piece of Dead’s skull that Euronymous allegedly gifted someone was just surfaced and listed for sale on Serial Killers Ink, “a true crime collectibles and memorabilia company.” The skull fragment was accompanied by a typed letter that Euronymous had written five days after Dead’s suicide and then sent to Tamas Vamosi (who managed Tormentor and was the Hungarian rep for Euronymous’ label, Deathlike Silence). As the listing on Serial Killers Ink points out, “Letter content begins by discussing business but then exclusively centers on Dead’s suicide in graphic detail. Euronymous included a piece of Dead’s skull with the letter – this is notated in the letter itself by Aarseth as well as in a separate included certificate of authenticity from Vamosi. The skull fragment is taped to the letter.” The item was quickly sold once word got out — it went for $3,500.
That’s a picture of the fragment above next to a penny (Serial Killers Ink notes that the penny is “for size comparison only. Penny not included”).