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Samael Envelops The Underworld In Darkness

Photo of Samael

Band Photo: Samael (?)

What can be said about Samael at this point? The Swiss quartet are one of the most influential bands in black metal, with Darkthrone drummer Fenriz citing their debut, "Worship Him" as "essential" and have continued to evolve their sound over a career spanning three decades. From their third album, "Ceremony Of Opposites," the group began adding electronic and industrial elements to their repertoire and now boast a unique style which no one has been able to match. At their recent show in London, I had the pleasure of not just interviewing frontman Vorph (which can be seen here) but also witnessing their one of a kind live show.

Unfortunately, I was unable to catch opening band, Hangman's Chair, but arrived in the nick of time to see the Swiss stalwarts kick off. Having previously seen Samael at 70000 Tons Of Metal last year, it was interesting to see them in their own environment (and in a more sturdy setting.) With Vorph at the helm, the band charged into battle with the title track from their latest album, "Hegemony," a record which was well represented on the night, as songs like "Black Supremacy" and "Angel Of Wrath" were also brought out to crush the audience.

There was a good mix of material on display however, going back to the aforementioned "Ceremony Of Opposites" album with songs such as "Baphomet's Throne" and "Son Of Earth," as well as the title track representing their third outing. "Solar Soul" and "Passage" were also well advertised, with three songs each boldly showing how strong these records are, including the classic, "Rain" and "Slavocracy." All of this material, fierce as it is, was empowered all the more by the band's natural charisma and image, which when combined makes for one of the most interesting live bands in the world today. Samael's reign is not over, nor it seems, will it ever be.

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Ollie Hynes has been a writer for Metal Underground.com since 2007 and a metal fan since 2001, going as far as to travel to other countries and continents for metal gigs.

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