Sanctus Diavolos

Rotting Christ

Legendary Greek Black Metallers Rotting Christ are among the few Greek acts who've made it […]
By Orpheus Spiliotopoulos
September 30, 2004
Rotting Christ - Sanctus Diavolos album cover

Legendary Greek Black Metallers Rotting Christ are among the few Greek acts who've made it sort of big in the international Black Metal scene (yeah ok, all you who don't like Black Metal don't have to go what international Black Metal scene...). A band with a great discography, with some kick-ass albums (like Thy Mighty Contract - 1993, Non Serviam - 1995 and A Dead Poem - 1997) which though not a zillion in quantity, have enough quality (inspiration-wise) to make you pay close attention to their hardworking efforts.
Now it's time to go over their latest effort, Sanctus Diavolos, which is Rotting Christ's first after-Kostas (x-guitarist) album.
The band's mainman, Sakis (guitars, vocals, keys), Andreas (bass) and Themis (drums) have managed to not only create a great album (as usual) but probably Rottnig Christ's best album ever!
The sound's really clear (recorded in Greece, mixed in Fredman Studios in Sweden by Fredrik Nordstrom) yet preserves their characteristic dirtiness behind their haunting tunes. Their playing is more than "fairly good and their ideas really blew me away! If Mozart was a Black Metal musician, he'd probably be joining Rotting Christ after listening to Sanctus Diavolos. Sakis' vocals are in top form, full of God-hating venom; his riffs are quite amazing (really got my Heavy Metal head swinging) and his keys forge a horrifying atmosphere around me as I listen to every single track. Themis' drumming is simply unstoppable and Andreas' bass hammering is fulfilling.
But they're not completely alone on this album. What do I mean? Well, on the opening track there's guitarist Gus G. (Firewind, x-Dream Evil etc) paying guest appearance and throughout the entire album there's the amazing choir Septic Flesh (R.I.P.) used to use in their albums (and of course in the side project band, which became their main activity, Chaostar). The addition of the choir was a brilliant idea in my opinion since in that way Rotting Christ have managed to create an intensely melancholic and doomy atmosphere without losing what it takes to be playing butt-stabbing Black Metal!
Another impressive fact about Sanctus Diavolos is the blending of ancient Greek with Black Metal (I can't stop listening to Athanati Este - you are immortal), not in the way some other Greek bands have already done (*yawn*) but in a more intelligent manner, which definitely blends in perfectly with the entire atmosphere I've described in this review.
Black Metal has a lot of styles. There are bands that play it raw, there are bands that blend in other things and there are bands which write songs about frogs and flowers. Rotting Christ is a band which guarantees one hell of a Black Metal ride through the ashes of your mind...

  • Album Highlights: Visions Of A Blind Order, Athanati Este, Sanctimonius, Serve In Heaven, Sanctus Diavolos

9 / 10

Almost Perfect

"Sanctus Diavolos" Track-listing:

Visions Of A Blind Order
Thy Wings Thy Horns Thy Sin
Athanati Este
You My Cross
Serve In Heaven
Shades Of Evil
Sanctus Diavolos

Rotting Christ Lineup:

Sakis - Vocals, Guitars & Keys
Andreas - Bass
Themis - Drums

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