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Cult Of Daath - A tricky subject (Wargoat Obscurum) - Online Jan 2006

With CULT OF DAATH's 2005 release, "Slit Throats And Ritual Nights", they have taken the Black Metal/Death Metal scene by storm, offering a unique blend of the two aforementioned genres. When referring to this release, Imperial stated that this was the finest album he has had the pleasure of placing the "Blood, Fire, Death" logo on. Unbridled, raw intensity is what this outfit has to offer and with such excellent compositions as displayed on "Slit Throats." CULT OF DAATH prove once again that the United States Metal scene is still one of vibrant and aggressive vitality.


Hello, Charles T. from “The Metal Observer” here, how are you guys doing now that "Slit Throats And Ritual Nights" is finally out, and what are the reactions thus far to the new album?


We've been getting a lot of positive feedback on the album, more so that anything we have done before. But, the most important thing, is that we are quite satisfied with the finished work. Obviously hindsight is 20/20, and there are things I would have liked to change or try differently, but overall we have succeeded with our plan.


I have seen the project described as both Death Metal and Black Metal in the past, and I was wondering what style you personally would describe your direction as?


This is always a tricky subject, I've seen us described as Death, Black, Death/Thrash, it seems they we don't have a typical sound to peg. We do not sound like a Scandinavian, Polish or silly "suicidal" BM band, we have a heavier and thicker sound. Our sound continues to evolve, we are quite different now compare to 1999 when we started.


In accomplishing such a unique and refreshing sound, you most certainly must have drawn from several different influences among both of the styles previously mentioned. Who has influenced CULT OF DAATH's sound the most, and do you feel you can readily notice this influence in your music?


I can't really pin-point one or two bands that have really influenced us, but I've always been attracted to the darker and more atmospheric bands like MORTUARY DRAPE, VARATHRON, MASTERS HAMMER, early BARATHRUM and ROTTING CHRIST. Now we might not really sound like these bands, but I feel we have that same spirit and mysterious atmosphere as they do, especially on our more recent work "Slit Throats and Ritual Nights." A lot of people seem to use BEHERIT as a reference point for us, maybe on the demo and the first album, but that description doesn't really fly anymore in my opinion.


How would you describe the evolution in sound and structure of the compositions from "The Triumphant Holocaust" demo to "Slit Throats."?


Stylistically it is similar, mysterious and barbaric BM. But, I think our sound has become more original and the lyrics have evolved tenfold. When we first started we just wanted to create the harshest and most destructive BM, but as we got older and gotten better skilled at our instruments we concentrated more on the actual songwriting aspect, instead of just barbaric skin flaying. I think our latest album "Slit Throats and Ritual Nights" is a logical conclusion to our original ideals, our next creation will be far more adventurous and unique.


One of the most unique aspects of the band is the hateful, morbid vocal-work. Is this sound accomplished with any effects or is the sound completely "natural"?


If I remember correctly, some reverb and a bit of distortion. As we go on, I hope to do more experimental things with my voice on future recordings.


How is the Metal scene in Chicago? Furthermore, what are your views on the American scene in general, and what bands do you recommend listeners keep their eyes on (besides CULT OF DAATH of course)?


The best BM bands in the States (that are still active) are NACHTMYSTIUM, INQUISITION, ARES KINGDOM, NEGATIVE PLANE, VELVET CACOON, and CRIMSON MOON/NIBIRU. Each of these acts offers something unique, from the somber sounds of NACHTMYSTIUM to the trance-inducing vibes of VELVET CACOON, they embody a great vision to write challenging and exceptional music. There might not but a large quantity of good BM bands in the USA, but for those who search, they will find some hidden gems.

The Chicago and greater Illinois area has an interesting and diverse Metal scene. We have NACHTMYSTIUM (BM), SUPERCHRIST (HM), THE CHASM (DM), THE RAUNCHOUS BROTHERS (HM), CIANIDE (DM), ALIOTH (ancient DM), SCEPTER (DM), BIBLE OF THE DEVIL (HM/Hard Rock) and VIRGIN KILLERS (TM). Quality bands that have my full support.


Are there any plans to make any live appearances? The Midwest is definitely lacking in quality shows and I'd love to see you come across the border into Missouri.


No plans for a live show, that is not a priority for us. I find the most enjoyment in the writing and recording process, playing live is too much about posturing and image.


How has your experience thus far been with Imperial and Blood, Fire, Death? Will we see a future release on the label?


First off, the CD was co-released by BFD and Deathgasm Records. Imperial and Evan did a great job in the promotion and distribution of the CD, they are both honest individuals. From my experience so far, I would not hesitate to work with these individuals again.


I must ask, the name CULT OF DAATH, where did it come from and what is the particular meaning behind it?


There isn't some huge personal meaning behind the name, I've always found Daath, and its hidden meanings to be quite interesting.


What is the main reason you wanted to pick up an instrument and get involved first hand in the Metal scene?


When I first started to play drums, I was never that interested in being in a band. I just enjoyed being behind a kit and creating rhythms. I never took lessons, the drums just came naturally to me. It was and still is a great tool to express myself with. It wasn't until I started playing guitar that I started having visions of CULT OF DAATH, I started sharing these ideas with my brother, and then in 1999 we decided to collaborate and create CULT OF DAATH. I am the drummer for CoD, but I write about half of the material, and since the “Razor War” 7 inch, I handle all of the lyrics and concepts as well.


Where there any difficulties in forming the band?


Not at all, after my brother and I started CoD, we knew it would only be the 2 of us. We are both on the same wave-length, and I wouldn't want to bring in 2 more members to poison the well.


If you had to choose one track from all of your recorded material thus far that means the most to you or holds a special place in the history of CULT OF DAATH, what would it be and why?


This is a difficult question to answer, but I would say “Occult Obsession”. It signifies our quest to study and search for the hidden things in life, to constantly seek knowledge.


What are your top 5 albums ever released?


I loathe questions like this, they are impossible to answer. But I will name you 5 essential albums instead:


MERCYFUL FATE - Don't Break The Oath

YES - Tales From Topographic Oceans

TIAMAT – Wildhoney

SEPTIC FLESH - The Ophideon Wheel

PINK FLOYD - Wish You Were Here


Thanks for your time, I hope to hear much from you guys in the future. Any last words for the masses?


Deathgasm is just about sold out of the “Slit Throats And Ritual Nights” CD, if people are interested in copies, I still have some. Email me at


2000: The Triumphant Holocaust (Demo)

2001: Under The Cover Of Darkness (Demo)

2002: The Grand Torturers Of Hell (CD, War Hammer Records)

2004: Razor Warp (EP, Klaxon/Nuclear War Now!)

2004: Under The Cover Of The Triumphant Holocaust (CD, Antinomian Records)

2005: Slit Throats And Ritual Nights (CD, DeathGasm/Blood Fire Death)

Charles Theel

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