Review of the Album "Non Serviam" by Greek Death Metal Band Rotting Christ
A Photo of the CD Non Serviam
How Does Non Serviam Begin?
In the tradition of covering Greek metal bands, here is another album review for Athens’ own Rotting Christ. Their second studio effort called “Non Serviam” is a step up from Thy Mighty Contract the year before. This review marks the 750th article! 750 is a sort of magical number because it almost feels like a hockey player scoring 750 goals in a career!
The Fifth Illusion begins this album which is a mixture of black and death metal, for instance being in the style of Impaled Nazarene. I’ve done a review of their 1994 album Suomi Finland Perkele so you can check that one out. I also notice the drumming style to be similar to early In Flames music such as the Subterranean EP. Although Rotting Christ was formed in 1987, their style of music is different than the Swedish melodic death metal bands that the world would witness in the 1990’s. Lyrically the song is about excavating an ancient tomb as a person can be trapped in a sort of self-delusion of reality and these tombs can be like a prison for them.. I also notice a bit of In Flames style guitar work in here just like the Subterranean mini album however it is not as melodic as that album.
Wolfera The Jackal
Wolfera the Jackal or Chacal depending upon which spelling we use is about a wild jackal that comes into the forest to terrorize humans. The forest is described as one that is messy. How can a forest be messy? Forests are filled with trees which provide nutrients for other plants and nature. There is the use of a sort of “snake” voice which reminds me of vocalist Chris Barnes.
Non Serviam Songs 3-6
It is proper and accurate at least in my view to categorize Non Serviam as an entry into death metal after Thy Mighty Contract was death metal combined with grindcore. Morality of a Dark Age is a slow song describing a scenario 2,000 years after the birth of Christ there being a dark age. The song tries to depict a society in which man is divided against man. Although there is much lyrical repetition by Sakis Tolis, the band still manages to keep the riffs good enough. Later the song turns into a nice classically influenced part as the band shows us something different than what we have been hearing up to this point. Fethroesforia is just a dark atmospheric instrumental song.
"Mephesis of Black Crystal"
Final Thoughts About "Non Serviam"
Mephesis of Black Crystal is a song about someone that feels so powerful that he has panthers around his throne and he is after a crystal that holds some sort of immense power as he asks to ride the chariot to victory. Ice Shaped God continues in the album's style of incessant fast picking as the song is about a world full of ghosts and other creatures. At this point in the band's career, these guys were just experimenting with their music and they would certainly get stronger as a band. Overall, "Non Serviam" is a good album and better than Thy Mighty Contract however it cannot compare to Sleep of the Angels or A Dead Poem. Non Serviam suffers from relying on too much repetition of the same riffs so we hear a saturated attempt by Rotting Christ to sound too much like a black metal band.
Final Score: 73 points of 100 (C)
© 2018 Ara Vahanian