Septicflesh in Retrospect: Anticipating the Modern Primitive Colombian Shows

Alex de Borba

Alex de Borba

In 2023, Septicflesh’s illustrious legacy is poised for further amplification with the unveiling of their Modern Primitive Latin American Tour. Spearheaded by the distinguished event production maestro, IDL Entertainment—celebrated for orchestrating premier extreme music events—the announcement has set the Latin American metal aficionado community abuzz. The tour, heralded as a showcase of Septicflesh’s unmatched live prowess, is poised to etch its mark as a monumental chapter in the chronicles of metal spectacles.

Greece boasts a rich tapestry of history, deeply influencing Western society through its mythology, art, and philosophy. Emblematic figures like Homer, known for his legendary narratives, and Plato, renowned for his philosophical discourses, epitomize the Hellenic heritage that has profoundly shaped European intellectual and cultural traditions. This legacy continues to inspire, as seen in the early 1990s when Septicflesh emerged. The band uniquely infused their music with a blend of ancient Greek motifs and modern interpretations, showcasing the timeless resonance of Greek culture.

Septicflesh is distinguished by their signature sound—a harmonious blend of powerful guitar sequences, dynamic percussion, and symphonic orchestrations. Their mastery lies in the seamless integration of classical instruments, including the violin, cello, and double bass, with the raw energy of traditional metal. This creates an auditory tapestry that oscillates between the majestic and the eerie. Beyond their contemporary uniqueness, Septicflesh’s musical approach reverently nods to Greece’s rich musical lineage, drawing inspiration from ancient lyre melodies to the deep echoes of Byzantine hymns.

Septicflesh stands out for their profound lyrical depth, drawing heavily from Greek mythology, historical narratives, and philosophical musings. Their songs, such as ‘Anubis’ and ‘Prometheus,’ exemplify their adeptness at intertwining age-old tales with modern storytelling, forging a connection from antiquity to the present for their audience. Through this lyrical approach, they delve into eternal themes—valor, tragedy, and the essence of humanity—while masterfully framing them within the contours of contemporary metal.

Originating from Greece, Septicflesh has transcended regional boundaries, enchanting audiences from Europe to North America and Asia. Their widespread acclaim is anchored in the dual allure of their universally resonant themes and their distinctive musical signature. Furthermore, their ascent in the global arena has cast a spotlight on the vibrant Greek metal community, creating avenues for fellow regional bands to achieve international prominence.

The ascent of Septicflesh signifies more than mere musical excellence; it resonates with the wider cultural evolutions of Greece in the face of twenty-first-century adversities. Amidst national economic strains and quests for identity, the band stands as a beacon of Greece’s unyielding cultural spirit. Through their music, which harmoniously melds the ancient with the contemporary, they present a vision of a Greece anchored in its rich legacy, yet with eyes set firmly on the global horizon.

At the outset of their musical odyssey, Septicflesh unveiled an EP titled ‘Temple of the Lost Race’ in December 1991, under the banner of Black Power Records. This foundational work paved the way for their inaugural studio album, ‘Mystic Places of Dawn,’ captured at Storm Studio in April 1994. The album saw a collaboration with Magus Wampyr Daoloth, famed for his keyboard contributions to Rotting Christ, and found its release through Holy Records.

Acknowledging its timeless appeal, a 2002 reissue amalgamated tracks from the ‘Temple of the Lost Race’ EP, offering aficionados an enriched insight into the band’s nascent phase. Cementing its iconic status, the album experienced a subsequent re-release in 2013 via the esteemed Seasons of Mist label, ensuring its resonance with a fresh cohort of metal aficionados.

One of the standout features of ‘Mystic Places of Dawn’ lies in its innovative drumming techniques. Although the album attributes drum contributions to “Jim,” a majority of the drum sequences are electronically crafted, signifying Septicflesh’s nascent foray into digital elements. A notable deviation is the track ‘Morpheus (the Dreamlord),’ which spotlights the percussive prowess of Nick Adams. Renowned for his artistic synergy with the Greek black metal ensemble Necromantia, Adams infused the track with a unique rhythmic flair, amplifying its sonic depth.

The vinyl rendition of ‘Mystic Places of Dawn’ stands out not merely for its auditory brilliance but also for its mesmerizing cover art, crafted by the illustrious Boris Vallejo. With a reputation for conjuring dreamy and otherworldly visuals, Vallejo’s artistic touch impeccably mirrors the album’s transcendent and enigmatic aura.

In 1995, Septicflesh set forth on crafting their sophomore album, ‘Esoptron,’ joining forces with co-producer George Zacharopoulos. The recording and mixing phases unfurled at Storm Studios over March and April, while the mastering touch was added at Sonic Contact, located in France. Loyal to their commitment, Holy Records took the helm for the album’s distribution.

Acknowledging the timeless allure of ‘Esoptron,’ Season of Mist chose to breathe new life into the album with a re-release in June 2013. This strategic move not only catered to the album’s dedicated fanbase but also beckoned a fresh wave of enthusiasts to its sonic depths.

‘Esoptron’ emerges as a beacon of Septicflesh’s avant-garde vision, marking a daring departure from their conventional sonic palette. This audacious experimentation is accentuated by their choice to employ synthesized drums throughout the album. Although “Kostas” receives accolades as a session drummer, the rhythmic sequences are purely electronic, underscoring the band’s nascent embrace of digital elements in their compositions.

A conspicuous void in ‘Esoptron’ is the absence of guitarist and composer Christos Antoniou. As a linchpin of Septicflesh, Antoniou’s hiatus during this juncture rendered ‘Esoptron’ the sole album devoid of his musical touch. Yet, in the face of this change, the album resonates as a tribute to the ensemble’s unified artistic prowess and their capacity to thrive amidst transitions.

As Septicflesh charted new sonic territories, they embraced the ethereal vocal stylings of session singer Natalie Rassoulis, notably in ‘The Ophidian Wheel’ (1997) and ‘A Fallen Temple’ (1998). Imbued with atmospheric soundscapes and lyrics steeped in mythological and esoteric motifs, these offerings not only showcased the band’s artistic evolution but also fortified their esteemed stature among their ardent followers.

Expanding upon the avant-garde groundwork laid by ‘Esoptron,’ ‘Ophidian Wheel’ heralded a transformative moment in Septicflesh’s musical trajectory. While preserving their hallmark ambient undertones, the album masterfully fused the ferocity of death metal with the brooding nuances of gothic rock, distinguishing ‘Ophidian Wheel’ as a unique chapter in their discography.

Although “Kostas” receives accolades as the drummer for ‘Ophidian Wheel,’ the rhythmic sequences are, in truth, entirely digital. This decision, mirroring their experimental ethos from the ‘Esoptron’ era, accentuates Septicflesh’s penchant for weaving electronic components into their compositions, bestowing a unique sonic texture to their oeuvre.

Acknowledging the pivotal role of ‘Ophidian Wheel’ within Septicflesh’s musical legacy, Season of Mist breathed new life into the album with a 2013 re-release. This revitalized edition not only beckoned a fresh wave of enthusiasts but also elevated the listening journey with bonus tracks and a rejuvenated visual aesthetic.

‘A Fallen Temple’ heralded a transformative moment in Septicflesh’s sonic journey. While preceding albums such as ‘Esoptron’ and ‘Ophidian Wheel’ leaned on digital drum tracks, ‘A Fallen Temple’ signaled the band’s re-embrace of live drumming, a technique not employed since their 1991 EP, ‘Temple of the Lost Race.’ This evolution infused the album with an unbridled vitality, anchoring its celestial melodies with the pulsating rhythm of authentic percussion.

In recognition of ‘A Fallen Temple’s esteemed place within Septicflesh’s musical tapestry, Season of Mist unveiled a reinvigorated edition in 2013. This re-release not only resonated with a burgeoning audience but also augmented the auditory voyage with bonus tracks and a reimagined visual canvas.

With the unveiling of ‘Revolution DNA,’ their fifth studio opus, Septicflesh manifested a marked metamorphosis in their sonic landscape. Venturing further into the shadowy realms of gothic rock, the album simultaneously embraced industrial nuances, lending their harmonies a metallic, machine-like resonance. This amalgamation of death metal, gothic allure, and industrial vibrations forged a singular auditory signature, underscoring the band’s audacity to transcend conventional boundaries and chart unexplored musical horizons.

‘Revolution DNA’ heralded a vocal metamorphosis for Septicflesh. Veering away from the signature death growls that punctuated their prior compositions, the album accentuated clean, melodic vocals. The once-familiar growls evolved into a gritty spoken-word cadence, intertwining flawlessly with the album’s eclectic musical tapestry. This vocal alchemy achieved a symphonic equilibrium, juxtaposing sheer intensity with melodic subtlety.

In 2003, Septicflesh unveiled their sixth studio opus, ‘Sumerian Daemons,’ via Hammerheart Records, further cementing their place in the annals of metal. Conceived as their swan song, the band chose to disband that year, positioning the album as a poignant apex of their musical odyssey. Yet, fate had other plans. In a serendipitous turn, Septicflesh announced a resurgence in 2007, ensuring ‘Sumerian Daemons’ was not a finale but a pivotal milestone in their enduring narrative.

Breaking away from conventional artwork, the cover of ‘Sumerian Daemons’ presents a palpable, real-world tableau, birthed from Spiros’ imaginative foresight. Entrusted with materializing this vision, the Alahouzos Bros, a renowned Greek FX ensemble celebrated for their cinematic and advertising feats, stepped in. Their artisanal prowess, harmonized with Spiros’ guidance, sculpted a cover that resonates profoundly with the album’s emotive sonic tapestry.

‘Sumerian Daemons’ plunges into the depths of arcane and filmic motifs, a journey epitomized in the track ‘Unbeliever.’ Lyrics such as “Demon resurrection passages from ‘The Book of the Dead’” draw inspiration from the iconic horror masterpiece ‘Evil Dead II.’ These cinematic allusions underscore Septicflesh’s adeptness at intertwining silver screen elements within their musical tapestry.

Following their disbandment in October 2003, the members of Septicflesh embarked on varied musical journeys. Christos Antoniou immersed himself further into Chaostar, a project he had pioneered in 1998. Demonstrating his multifaceted talent, Katsionis aligned with Nightfall as a guitarist and with Firewind in a keyboardist role. In 2004, a cohort of original Septicflesh members converged to establish TheDevilWorx. By March 2007, the spotlight shone on guitarist Sotiris Vayenas as he announced his solo endeavor, Aenaos.

On the heels of their announcement on February 19th, 2007, Septicflesh marked their triumphant return at the Metal Healing Festival in Greece. This resurgence was further amplified when, on April 3rd, news broke of their collaboration with the French label, Season of Mist, for their seventh studio opus, ‘Communion.’ Crafted at Studio Fredman in Sweden, this anticipated album graced the music scene in April 2008. Concurrently, the band underwent a symbolic metamorphosis, transitioning their moniker from Septic Flesh to Septicflesh, heralding a rejuvenated chapter in their epic tale.

One of the defining hallmarks of ‘Communion’ is its majestic orchestral compositions, deftly crafted by guitarist Christos Antoniou, a distinguished alumnus with a master’s in concert music from the London College of Music. Amplifying the album’s sonic depth, the Prague Filmharmonic Orchestra lends its brilliance, weaving together the artistry of 80 instrumentalists and the harmonies of a 32-strong choir.

‘Communion’ artfully fuses the visceral vigor of death metal, the haunting allure of gothic metal, and the shadowy nuances of black metal. Augmenting this sonic tapestry, the symphonic embrace of a full orchestra and choir, meticulously orchestrated by Chris Antoniou, infuses a classical resonance, amplifying the album’s multifaceted depth and grandeur.

For guitarist Sotiris Vayenas, the title ‘Communion’ resonates as a symbolic bridge to non-human beings, often portrayed in diverse religious ceremonies. The album embarks on a journey through mythic landscapes, drawing inspiration from the ancient realms of Egyptian, Hellenic, and Sumerian lore. While ‘Communion’ weaves these themes together, Vayenas underscores its expansive nature, asserting that the album transcends a linear storyline, mirroring the vast spectrum of his muse.

‘Communion’ garnered universal praise, resonating deeply with critics and aficionados alike. Chad Bowar, writing for, extolled the album for its masterful amalgamation of sheer ferocity and orchestral nuances. In a similar vein, Kostas Sarampalis of Chronicles of Chaos hailed ‘Communion’ as a shining beacon of Septicflesh’s reinvigorated spirit post-hiatus.

Building on the acclaim of ‘Communion,’ Septicflesh rode a wave of sustained momentum. The year 2009 heralded the inception of their next musical venture, culminating in the unveiling of the single ‘The Vampire From Nazareth’ in December 2010. This crescendo of creativity reached its zenith with the release of ‘Titan’ in June 2014. Amidst these milestones, the ensemble experienced a shift in rhythm, as Kerim “Krimh” Lechner stepped in, succeeding the seasoned drummer Fotis Benardo.

In their eighth studio opus, ‘The Great Mass,’ Septicflesh unfurled a tapestry of artistic evolution and mastery. Crafted between July and September 2010, the album found its sonic roots in two illustrious studios: Devasoundz in Greece and The Abyss in Sweden. The touch of legendary metal maestro Peter Tägtgren further elevated the album. His deft hand ensured that ‘The Great Mass’ echoed with fervor and finesse, encapsulating the quintessential spirit of Septicflesh.

‘The Great Mass’ is distinguished by its majestic orchestral intricacies, epitomizing Septicflesh’s signature sonic palette. The maestro behind these compositions, Christos Antoniou, renowned for his prowess in fusing classical orchestration with the raw energy of metal, sculpted these musical landscapes. Amplifying this symphonic brilliance, the esteemed Prague Philharmonic Orchestra breathed life into Antoniou’s conceptions, imbuing the album with a depth and splendor that is truly unparalleled.

With its debut, ‘The Great Mass’ garnered widespread accolades, cementing Septicflesh’s stature as trailblazers in the realm of symphonic death metal. The album’s masterful fusion of ferocious guitar riffs, haunting ambiances, and opulent classical orchestrations distinguished it, etching its place as a monumental chapter in the band’s illustrious legacy.

In a testament to its monumental impact, the esteemed Metal Hammer magazine, in 2021, heralded ‘The Great Mass’ as the 9th paramount symphonic metal album of all time. This distinguished honor not only attests to the album’s unparalleled artistry but also illuminates its timeless resonance within the genre.

Unveiled on June 20th, 2014, via the esteemed Season of Mist label, ‘Titan,’ Septicflesh’s ninth magnum opus, garnered resounding accolades from both connoisseurs and aficionados. The album artfully distilled Septicflesh’s hallmark fusion of ferocious guitar riffs, ethereal harmonies, and lavish orchestral flourishes. While ‘Titan’ ventured into uncharted musical terrains, it simultaneously anchored itself in the quintessential essence that has consistently characterized the band’s sonic legacy.

Though ‘Titan’ garnered praise, its accolades seemed somewhat tempered when juxtaposed with the laudations heaped upon the band’s preceding two albums. This more measured acclaim for ‘Titan’ does not diminish its intrinsic worth; instead, it underscores the towering benchmarks established by prior masterpieces, most notably ‘The Great Mass.’

While ‘Titan’ might not stand as Septicflesh’s crowning achievement, it undeniably holds a pivotal place in their sonic tapestry. The album crystallizes a moment where the band teeters between reflection and reinvention, deftly juxtaposing the gravitas of their storied past against the beckoning horizons of uncharted musical territories.

Debuting on September 1st, 2017, via the esteemed Season of Mist label, ‘Codex Omega,’ Septicflesh’s tenth musical odyssey, emerged as a beacon of their enduring craftsmanship and dynamic evolution. With a lineage of celebrated albums preceding it, ‘Codex Omega’ was enveloped in fervent expectation, serving both as a mirror to the band’s illustrious past and a compass pointing to fresh sonic horizons.

‘Codex Omega’ epitomizes Septicflesh’s hallmark fusion of ferocious guitar work, ethereal orchestrations, and a duality of raw guttural and harmonious vocals. Beyond its sonic landscape, the album ventures into profound thematic terrains, navigating the realms of mythology, existential musings, and the intricate labyrinth of the human mind.

Though ‘Codex Omega’ represents a more recent addition to Septicflesh’s oeuvre, its import was swiftly recognized. The album is a testament to the band’s refined craftsmanship, deftly straddling their evolutionary strides and foundational essence. With a magnetic pull that attracts both long-standing aficionados and those newly initiated, ‘Codex Omega’ amplifies Septicflesh’s timeless allure.

With the 2022 unveiling of ‘Modern Primitive,’ Septicflesh once again fortified their esteemed stature within the symphonic death metal pantheon, showcasing their unwavering commitment to musical excellence and innovation.

Septicflesh’s meteoric ascent from the local echelons of Athens to the zenith of global recognition is a testament to their unparalleled musical virtuosity, ceaseless innovation, and indomitable spirit. Charting a path replete with both adversities and accolades, their odyssey stands as a beacon of inspiration for veteran maestros and budding talents alike.

The Modern Primitive Latin American Tour 2023 promises a series of nine electrifying performances, gracing iconic cities across Latin America. Eager metal enthusiasts from countries such as Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, Colombia, and Mexico are gearing up to immerse themselves in the sonic tempest and grandiose live spectacle that is quintessentially Septicflesh.

The musical odyssey kicks off on October 26th in São Paulo, Brazil, journeying through cities including Limeira, Montevideo, and Buenos Aires. Santiago, Chile, is set to reverberate with their sound on October 31st, while San Jose, Costa Rica, awaits its turn on November 3rd. Colombia will be treated to back-to-back performances: Medellín on November 4th and Bogotá on the 5th. The grand finale awaits on November 11th at the much-anticipated Mexico Metal Fest—a gathering that is already creating ripples of excitement for its promise of a monumental and incendiary showcase.

For aficionados well-versed in Septicflesh’s rich musical tapestry, the bar of anticipation is set stratospherically high. Those in attendance can eagerly await a setlist peppered with ageless classics, as well as standout tracks from the lauded ‘Codex Omega’ album—a testament that has further solidified their position as torchbearers in the symphonic extreme metal landscape.

To encapsulate, Septicflesh’s Modern Primitive Latin American Tour 2023 transcends the confines of a mere concert series—it promises an immersive odyssey, a grand spectacle. This tour offers aficionados a golden chance to plunge into a harmonious blend of sonic intensity and arresting visuals, a signature experience that only Septiflesh can craft. With fervor mounting, a clarion call emerges: Brace yourselves for a rapturous, metal-fueled ascension.

In the Woods... Set to Debut in Colombia, Celebrating Progressive Metal

In the Woods… Set to Debut in Colombia, Celebrating Progressive Metal

Sodom’s South American Tour: Thrash Metal Giants Return to Colombia

Sodom’s South American Tour: Thrash Metal Giants Return to Colombia

Dark Tranquillity’s Return to the Colombian Metal Scene at Teatro Astor Plaza

Dark Tranquillity’s Return to the Colombian Metal Scene at Teatro Astor Plaza

Ancient Rites is Set to Embark on a Groundbreaking Latin Tour in Colombia

Ancient Rites is Set to Embark on a Groundbreaking Latin Tour in Colombia

Notify of
Inline Discussions
View all discussions



& Updated

Share to...