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Interview

Front Man Syhirious Of Diamoth Shares His Thoughts On Christian Metal

Late last month, Metalunderground looked at the genre of music referred to as "unblack" metal, which injects explicitly Christian themes into the black metal style, in an entry of our Unearthing the Metal Underground column. We have now posted a companion article looking at how religion has influenced metal, and how Christianity in particular affects the frequently anti-religious black metal genre. During my time looking into the subject, I contacted a series of bands taking either a pro-Christian or anti-Christian stance to see what the musicians themselves had to say.

Previously we revealed the comments from Dehumanation, Throne of Malediction, and Frames, who took a generally anti-religious stance, as well as Elgibbor and Winter's Dawn on the opposite side. Our next interviewee is Syhirious of the Chile based Christian metal band Diamoth. Anyone interested in hearing Diamoth's music can find songs available for streaming via the band's MySpace profile.

xFiruath: What does black metal or extreme metal personally mean to you, either as a musical style or a philosophy?

Syhirious: A kind of music isn’t a philosophy. A philosophy is based in solving problems with an introspective method, you can talk about philosophy through music, but there is an interesting difference between these two concepts, based in the practice. Well, personally, I think that black metal is just a kind of music that you can play copying other artists or resignify with your own style and sense.

xFiruath: Do you personally see a distinction between unblack metal bands and black metal bands? That is to say, do you think bands with religious members and religious lyrics should be categorized differently?

Syhirious: There is an obvious difference, about the focus of the lyrics, about the vision of musician, about motivation and devotion, about the feelings of expression. In most of the black metal bands I've heard, the predominant feeling in the lyrics is anger and destruction, unlike most Christian metal bands, the predominant feeling is a force to overcome the difficult moments in spiritual warfare.

xFiruath: There’s no question that black metal saw its major awakening with Norwegian bands that either had anti-religious sentiments or had members who were themselves involved in anti-religious activities. Do you think that black metal can be separated from its beginnings without becoming something else entirely?

Syhirious: Yes. I will explain with an example. Imagine that a man bought an outfit that can only be used in a single occasion; the occasion happened and the outfit "can't be use again.” Imagine a fire occurs, and his entire house with his belongings was burned in that fire, except him and his outfit that was used. What would do the fool? The fool would say: "I'd rather be naked than to use this outfit that was used.” But what would do the wise? The wise would say: "the dress had a purpose and it was used, now I will re-signify his function.” The wheel can be always a wheel, and the person who invented the wheel certainly has it's copyrights in prehistoric times, but you can take that element and turn it into something new with a new function, the same thing happens with the music.

xFiruath: How do lyrics influence your decision to listen to a band? If you heard an amazing black metal band you loved, but later discovered the lyrics were anti-Christian, would you continue listening to them?

Syhirious: No, I’m strong in my feelings about Christ, I don’t like to be incongruent with my decisions. Personally, I don’t care if a great band exists with anti-Christian lyrics, my life doesn’t depend on if I listen to a band or not. A person has to be congruent with himself and with the others.

xFiruath: How would you feel about listening to a pro-Muslim black metal band with all Islamic members (or a pro-Jewish black metal band, or pro-Scientologist black metal band, or pro-Mormon black metal band, or so on…)?

Syhirious: I will not explain the implicit function of the cognitive perception process, that explanation is for another kind of interview, but if you hear a song that you like, musically speaking, but you are in disagreement with the lyrics, and you enjoy that song, you are accepting the song in its entirety. Humans tend to see and understand things holistically. To answer your question, I would feel incongruent with myself.

xFiruath: After listening to a lot of Christian rock and metal bands, I’ve found they tend to segregate out based on lyrical content. How do you feel about Christian unblack metal bands using war and gore themed lyrics, such as about battles between angels and demons? How about lyrics dealing with the times God kills people (or commands others to kill people) during the Bible? Do you think unblack metal bands should only have positive and uplifting lyrics?

Syhirious: First of all, I disagree with anti-Christian bands or satanic bands, but that doesn’t mean that I accept all Christian bands. There are many Christian bands that arise from fanaticism. If you will sing or speak about the Bible, you should be sure to understand it. Everyone can read the Bible but not everyone can understand it, in fact, the understanding don't arises of the own wisdom, but is given by revelation to our being. I think that Christian bands need to be ministered by the Holy Spirit before writing something. For example, I’m not perfect, as a human I fall a lot, and I need to be ministered by the Holy Spirit every day.

xFiruath: What Christian bands do you personally listen to, metal or otherwise?

Syhirious: Mortal, Mortification, Tourniquet, JAR, Sanctifica, etc.

xFiruath: What specifically in your life led you to believe in ideas like God and the supernatural?

Syhirious: Jesus opened my eyes to see and understand things with no explanation. The first is love, that word is more than an emotion, more than a feeling, more than looking the happiness. It is an attitude, it is a way to understand yourself and the others, it is a form to being in the world and being with the others. God is love, and in my life I experienced many things that reaffirm that.

xFiruath: Anything else you’d like to discuss on the issue?

Syhirious: I am aware of the gaps between Christians and non-Christians, intolerance that sometimes extends between them. My personal war is not against people, I try to respect all people and accept their differences, accept is not the same as being in agreement, and the only message that I will give to people is: Christ loves them, take it or leave it.

xFiruath: What’s going on with your band these days?

Syhirious: Diamoth is preparing a new album, more crust and raw, and it’s looking for new members.

xFiruath's avatar

Ty Arthur is a freelance writer who writes for both entertainment and technical instruction sites. An avid fan of many different forms of metal, he has been involved in reviewing music for several years and is currently a contributing editor for Metalunderground.com

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14 Comments on "Diamoth Explains Christian Black Metal"

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Anonymous Reader
1. lol writes:

What a dumbf***. Diamoth as a whole needs to go sit on a baby jesus butt plug.

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 1:14 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
ReaperOfBodom's avatar

Member

2. ReaperOfBodom writes:

Christian black metal? No such thing in my book and his burning house and outfit example was pretty lame and has no relevance to music. The bible is full of immoralities and hypocricies and is perverse at its core. Hail true black metal!!!!!!!!

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 1:34 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
3. Armageddon writes:

christian black metal is an oxymoron

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 1:47 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Cynic's avatar

Senior Reviewer

4. Cynic writes:

The suit analogy barely made sense. I agree that people take music holistically, that's why music culture is also a holistic experience and why black metal is more than "just a type of music you play."

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 4:00 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
5. idiot writes:

This guy needs to just stick to creed because he is a bible totting p***y

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 7:45 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
brandedcfh420's avatar

Member

6. brandedcfh420 writes:

typical christian. falls, but cant pick himself up. has to have help from an invisible deity!! WUHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 8:46 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
IrishMetal's avatar

Member

7. IrishMetal writes:

I agree with Cynic, that Outfit/suit analogy makes no sense at all.

He's equating 'losing all your clothes and then having to wear a suit made for a specific event because it needs to be usd' with Black metal being used in a Christian fashion?

Surely for that analogy to work, all the other styles of metal in the world would have to somehow be lost before they turn to Black...

All in all, the dude's talking out of his a$$ for a lot of stuff. Bands can be damn good, and if they say something you disagree with, who cares. It's good to get other perspectives on life. You don't wholly give yourself over to something just because you like the music - only weak-minded people flow right into an ideology in that way.

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 9:44 AM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
hellrat's avatar

Member

8. hellrat writes:

ha! that goofy dude don't seem to have his big ol' head screwed on straight

he's contradictory as hell...black metal is NOT a philosophy???? the very essence and foundations of BM was pretty much a fundamental pholosophy...historically at least, the music itself was secondary in importance

so the Black philosophy is inconsequential, and its music "is just a style you can play copying other artists", yet this empty package is supposed to be experienced holistically?? well, what a fvckin rip off, eh?

resignify????? completely inverted notion...not to mention, ridiculously self important

then the fvckin gaper skirts around his responsibility as a 'wise' guy to really further our collective education with his profound insight into "the implicit function of the perceptive cognisant process"
aw come on man, spit it out! inquiring minds want to know! :)

i'd say this dorky dude's 'resignified' clown suit is looking rather soiled, and somewhat threadbare, wouldn't you all agree? hell, the damned thing was quite poorly taylored anyway...nope, it never did fit at all!

this righteous goon's 'whole' convoluted charade is so entirely 'incongruent', it is really quite fvcking absurd :)

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 12:22 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
9. Lizard writes:

Personally I have no problem with unblack metal. So it might not be for me, but just let the guy get on with it.

Ok, there's always an extreme form of every sect; the fanatics and the self-righteous, but you find that everywhere, so I can get past that.

But I gotta admit, I don't get the whole 're-signify it's function' part. I think that's a bad definition, as it hints that the Christian agenda is somehow more important than any other black metal and of course, it isn't. It's just another different form.

I disagree with him denying that there was a philosophy of early BM. No matter how notorious it was, there was a philosophy there.

I can understand that black metal has its roots in an anti-religious sentiment, but what about satanic black metal?

Satanism is still religion. And after all, it could be argued that Satan is an invention of Christianity.

And what about other bands like Wolves In The Throne Room, who support a more environmentalist agenda? Are they not black metal? Terms like 'extension' of black metal have been used. I think that's fair, and at the same time I don't think that should take anything away from the original BM bands.

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 2:49 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
10. holy bibble writes:

This is sh**. This guy’s analogy that black metal is a burned down house (destroyed), with him left wearing the uniform (in charge), is sh**. Typical Christian.

He confirmed his belief in the holy spirit. Christians believe that their “holy spirit” goes around converting people. Yes folks, he has that spirit there, and he thinks folks need to be “confirmed” with it. This is, in fact, the method of that so called “spiritual warfare” on the part of the Christian. They lie a about it, though. He is an extreme type of Christian to talk about the holy spirit and spiritual warfare, and still try to glaze it over with the “god is love Christ loves all” stuff. It’s the love stuff that’s a lie with guys like that, and lie they try to use to their advantage. War? Isn’t that consigning something against it’s will? Not if God loves you and your crusade is righteous. Bull sh**.

This guy is a typical Christian piece of ass. Not to exclude more prominent aspects of the genre, but sh** doesn’t appear out of nowhere. This area of the world was subject to tyrannical and extreme Christian beliefs for a long time, and there was an element of control and methods of control among the clergy to the people, and then from there to within families. There were harsh “rules.” For instance in Sweden 100 years ago fathers would beat their wives and kids once a week with a rod to drive out sin and moral corruption from their bodies. It wasn’t until 1968 that this was found to be illegal. But, this guy is South American, not Northern European. There is a strong Christian culture in many parts of South America. You know those parades where people nail their self to crosses? The kind of places where one kid can call another kid a “witch” and throw a rock at their head, and it’s all cool. Conservative. After a long time, there might be “conservatives” in black metal, trying to keep true to the genre, etc, but originally, black metal, like most forms of Satanism, are not conservative to begin with, but libertarian. This guys that “rock the holy sprit” are religious conservatives. Not very metal imo.

Also, remember, to Christians the meaning of the word “house.” The “house” of god. He claims to have burned the “house” of black metal.

Of course black metal is a philosophy. Christians throughout history don’t care for any other philosophy but their own to exist. Black metal contains philosophies contrary to Christianity, and this Christian Conservative knows it, burns their house, and takes the clothes of their back. f***ing Christian.

Dorks like this who say “god is love, Jesus loves all” who go on their “war” saying “god” and “christ” love “all” including “non Christians” spin that crap with that holy ghost sh**, that they believe converts others. And why do Christian asses like this always target “non Christians?” Who the f*** gives about non Christians (other than not being Christian.) The real a$$holes are within the Christian ranks themselves, pedophile priests that don’t get their day in court, on and on, and the institution that allows it to happen. But of course not, that would make too much sense. Target the non Christians. They’re the problem. It’s conversion talk, not libertarian talk. There are extremist jackasses of all make and variety, and I think this guy is of the Christian variety. Get ready to be thumped by that bible.

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 3:10 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
11. tobychainsaw writes:

Well I used to have a tape which I called The Heaven and Hell Tape. On side A was Stryper- Soldiers Under Command and side B was Grim Reaper- See You In Hell. I can listen to both and the lyrics from either band get to me.

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 3:18 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
gripper's avatar

Member

12. gripper writes:

there is a certain progression in all of pop/rock music for a Christian theme
after all there are numerous Christian pop, rock, rap, and r&b etc themed artists
the Stryper example has been mentioned
i hated Stryper when i was a kid when i hear them today its ok 80's hard rock if a little bland
and that's the point
all Christian themed popular music tends to be very boring
Gospel and traditional church hymns have much more energy
it is ironic that the Christian artists want to express their faith through their musical "talent" yet their music is almost always lacking any spark.
true Metal has that real deal energy that can't be faked
thus the term poser
there is so much decent hard rock posing as Metal these days its seems the Church kids should find some clean hard rock and leave the Metal to those who have a passion for being an outsider

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 4:14 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
Anonymous Reader
13. holy bibble writes:

Not just the literal “house” they call the church building do you know what “houses” are to these spiritual warfare freaks? To have the “house” of black metal in flames, and leave it in the “image” of a black metal artist (the reference to the clothes), claiming to be “ministered” by the holy spirit (this translates as a mission of conversion, and “infiltrating the house“), this guy is openly saying he is no more black metal that cottage cheese, but he poses as black metal anyway.

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 4:51 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address
btbamfav20's avatar

Member

14. btbamfav20 writes:

retarded, its like having warm snow, not possibly.

NP: Rock Your Socks - Tenacious D

# Jan 18, 2011 @ 5:01 PM ET | IP Logged Reveal posts originating from the same IP address

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