Sunday, 16 October 2011


I have often made my opinions very clear on the modern UK death metal scene and the lack of bands that uphold and stay true to the "old school" sound and attitude in my opinion, too much emphasis on technicality instead of just good old fashioned heads down scathing morbid death metal nastiness but there are some old school style gems to be unearthed within the UK death metal scene if you dig deep enough...Cruciamentum are one such band that I have came across in recent times who sound like everything a death metal band SHOULD sound like to these ears, evil, morbid, brutal, heavy, grotesque with a musical atmosphere that is the musical equivalent of a darkened stinking crypt that has had bodies rotting away in it for centuries...that is the kind of things I want death metal bands to evoke personally, but hey that is just my opinion...some people prefer sterile technicality , I prefer a filthy evil atmosphere and riffs and Cruciamentum have both in abundance but that is not surprising as this band also shares members with the equally awesome Grave Miasma, another UK death metal band who have been creating abit of a buzz and a name for themselves over the past year or so.

Cruciamentum have built up quite an impressive following over recent years via 2 self released demos "Rotten Flesh Crucifix"   "Convocation of Crawling Chaos" One of these demos was recently re-released on CD and 10" vinyl by Nuclear Winter Records. If I had to make comparisons musically then I would say that Cruciamentum are equal parts Incantation, early Morbid Angel, old Finnish-Swedish death metal with some strong nods to the crushing stomp of Bolt Thrower and Asphyx and would also sit perfectly alongside albums by the likes of  Funebrarum in your collection, they mix up slower doomed passages with bursts of blasting speed just perfectly and each song is swathed in an oppressive aura of darkness and impending doom, the vocals are mostly of the deep death growled variety and could be compared to the likes of Craig Pillard and Karl Willets. This bands sound is about sonic density...this bands music is like a whirlwind of choking black dust swirling around you, ripping your senses apart with it's power in the process...Nice and clean death metal this band are most definetly not...but that is just what my ears want to hear!

The band have also recently just played the 2nd annual edition of Kill Town Fest and toured mainland Europe with Israeli Death metallers Sonne Adam and will soon by hitting the USA for the 2nd time and playing Rites Of Darkness II festival.

I sent some questions to D.L. the vocalist/guitarist before they set off on tour and here is what he had to say in response to some question I fired at him about influences, their upcoming American shows amongst other things :-

1)      Hails please give me a quick background on the band and who does what.

The details of our origins are insignificant but to sum ourselves up quickly to the uninitiated, Cruciamentum is a four piece death metal band from England consisting of: D.L. – Vocals / Guitars, B.C. – Bass / Vocals, D.B-H. – Drums and R.C. – Guitars.

2)      You currently only have 2 demos tapes under your belt but have already seemingly and impressively amassed a cult following when can we expect an EP or full length from you guys? I understand an EP is on the horizon via Nuclear Winter? Are the demos still available?

The first demo is unavailable, it’s only song was re-worked and re-recorded for the second “Convocation of Crawling Chaos” demo. The original cassette version is entirely sold out, but it has just been re-released on CD and 10” vinyl via Nuclear Winter who will also be releasing the new MLP in the coming months. That will feature four new songs spanning around 25 minutes. September will also see the release of a split 7” with Vasaeleth on Hell’s Headbangers.

3)      How did that deal come about?

I had been in touch with A.V. for a while so I sent him a tape, and he instantly signed us. His work and support are second to none, and we hope to continue our collaboration with him into the future.

4)      You do not seem to play too often in the UK and have already hit the states for last year’s Rites of Darkness, how did that slot come about and did you play any other shows over in the states whilst you were over there? What was that experience like?

I find it much more preferable for us to wait to be offered a place on an excellent line-up and make the gig a special event. Playing too often to local crowds can only be detrimental to the band in the end.
Rites of Darkness was a great experience, though we didn’t have enough time to arrange more dates. There is no exciting story behind our playing the festival, we simply received an email offering us a slot on the line-up, and we gladly accepted it. We plan to do a few extra dates with Anhedonist and Aldebaran when we return this year.

5)      You are also due to play Kill town Death Fest in Copenhagen, what are your expectations for that? A Euro tour is planned around that time too, please tell us about that, where you will be playing?

I’ve been informed on good authority that KTDF is an exceptionally organised festival and I’m personally looking forwards to seeing Funebrarum, Sonne Adam, Embrace of Thorns and Burial Invocation.
We are also doing a tour with Sonne Adam after the festival, not all the dates are confirmed yet, but we should be playing some gigs through Holland, Belgium, France England and Germany. This should be an interesting experience as it will be our first time playing more than two gigs in succession.

6)      Members of the band are based in different parts of the country and also have some other bands that are active, how do you manage to juggle schedules, prioritise things aswell as keeping the band going effectively when some members are based so far apart from each other? Has it ever caused a problem or have you got things worked out pretty well?

I handle the majority of the writing, so I record demos of new material, send them to the other members, who come up with their own ideas, riffs etc. We then rehearse together and finish the writing process as a full band. As you say, we are spread across three cities and around 200 miles, so writing is a slow process, but I believe that the difficulties caused are insignificant compared to the positive aspects of having all the right musicians in the band.

7)      Why the name Cruciamentum?

Cruciamentum translates from latin to “torture”. The translation and the choice of an antiquated language, at least to me evokes the aura of obscure horror which lies at the heart of our music.

8)      Your sound is very much rooted in the old school of death metal, what bands and influences fuel and shape the sound of Cruciamentum?

The diversity of Cruciamentum’s sound is due to our influences extending beyond simply copying bands that we are fans of. Many of the different moods are inspired by trying to musically arouse the aura of certain dreams, artworks, books or places that inspire me. That said, bands such as Disembowelment, Incantation, Demigod, Absu, Immolation, Morbid Angel and Sadistic Intent have certainly left their marks upon our subconscious over the years.

9)      Lyrically what themes do you touch upon?

So far death and damnation have been ever present spectres over Cruciamentum’s work. Should these endings be physical or spiritual, destruction has always obsessed me. I prefer to write in an open ended way, to retain a personal element for myself, and so that the listener can draw their own conclusions.

10)  Whats your opinion on the current British death metal-extreme music scene? Any bands you feel an affiliation or bond with? What UK bands would you recommend to the readers out there to check out?

I’ve no particular interest in the British scene, I feel no need to praise bands that I feel to be uninspiring simply because we are from the same country or drink together sometimes. If that damages any fragile egos then you can fuck off. There are a few excellent bands however Indesinence, The One, Wodensthrone, Isenscur and Adorior all frequent my stereo. I’ve not heard any interesting new bands for a while though…

11)  What is your opinion on the current worldwide death metal scene, old school death metal seems to have became more popular again in recent years, why do you think that has happened after such a style seemed to disappear back underground for a while.

My cynicism would blame the cyclic trends of metal, but I think also the fact that brutal/slam death (or whatever you want to call it) which preceded the “old school” boom hit its evolutionary dead end. People had to eventually get bored of it and move to something with a little more creativity in it. There certainly is more support for the older sound than there used to be, but as always, there are great bands and there are terrible, uninspired bands. Time will separate the wheat from the chaff.

12)  What are your plans for rest of 2011 and into 2012?

Well, as I’ve previously mentioned the MLP and split 7” will be out in the coming months, there are the tours with Sonne Adam and Anhedonist, and then I suppose we’ll start concentrating on writing for a full length. I wouldn’t expect that to happen too soon though.

13)  The last words are yours, plug available merch and anything else you would like to add. thanks.

We’ve got shirts, 10”s, CDs in stock at the moment, so anyone interested can feel free to drop an email to

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