In Germany, there have been two different metal bands called Dark Fortress. One of them was an '80s-influenced power metal band that was formed in Riedstadt in 1998 and recorded an album titled Light and Darkness in 2000; after that band's breakup a few years later, three of its ex-members -- singer/bassist Torsten Thassilo Herbert and guitarists Thorsten Brand and Matthias Bludau -- went on to form the power metal band Dragonsfire in 2005. But there is also a black metal band from Landshut with the name Dark Fortress; the better known of the two groups, this Dark Fortress formed four years before the Riedstadt-based power metal band and they were still going strong after that band called it quits. Landshut's Dark Fortress (not to be confused with Dark Suns or the Swedish black metal band Dark Funeral) were formed in 1994, when guitarist Asvargr (the band's founder/leader) joined forces with lead singer Matthias Jell, aka Azathoth, bassist Njord, and drummer Charon. After rehearsing some material in 1994 and 1995, Dark Fortress recorded their first demo, Rebirth of the Dark Age, in 1996 -- and the following year, Asvargr added keyboardist Thamuz to the lineup and hired a second guitarist: Crom. It was also in 1997 that Dark Fortress started to perform live, replaced Njord with bassist Alex Stütz, aka Zoltan, and recorded a split CD titled Towards Immortality with the German black metal band Barad Dür; that disc was released by a small independent label called Fog of the Apocalypse Records.