Sadistic Intent & Sijjin join us for a double interview ahead of Saturday’s ZT sponsored live performance!
Buckle up and prepare yourselves for one of the ugliest shows of the year… US death metal legends Sadistic Intent and German occultists Sijjin are coming to the UK this weekend to perform at London’s Electrowerkz for a neck-breaking lineup sponsored by Zero Tolerance Magazine and assembled by Morbid Angle, Isengard Promotions and Killtown Bookings.
Both will be performing atop of a savage bill of UK bands including London’s Adorior and Necromaniac for the only UK date of the Your God Will Be Destroyed Tour. The gig will be followed Heavy Bitchcraft – an official afterparty at Helgi’s Bar in Mare Street, hosted by DJs Terry King and La Strega. Scroll to the bottom of the page for tickets and further info.
Sadistic Intent are true pioneers of extreme American death metal. Hailing from Los Angeles, California brothers Rick and Bay Cortez formed the band in 1987 after being exposed to the noise of Slayer, Possessed and Bathory – interestingly, it was Tom Araya’s line from Slayer’s ‘Angel of Death’ – “Sadistic Surgeon of Demise”, that would give the band its name. 1997’s Ancient Black Earth is one of Sadistic Intent’s landmark releases and to this date the band has never released a full-length album, opting mainly for the EP format as well as split releases and compilations.
Sijjin are a crushing new addition to the genre. The band was formed in 2019 by ex-Necros Christos members Malte Gericke (Mors Dalos Ra) and Iván Hernández along with guitarist Ekaitz Garmendia. As you might expect, Sijjin is imbued with much of the Necros Christos spirit and frontman Malte Gericke’s fascination with the ancient near east. Like a malevolent inscription frozen in time, the band’s 2022 debut Sumerian Promises will feed your dismembered body to the dogs and the throw the rest of you on the shit-heap of history. Simply put, it was one of the most insidious death metal releases of 2021.
Adorior deserve no less praise. Boasting some of the most offensive album covers in British music history, this band are the pride of many UK diehards, mainly for their 2005 album Author Of Incest, which can only be described as a total assault on the senses and the human race. After their devastating performance with Blasphemy before the pandemic, Adorior are back with a new line-up and material in the works.
Necromaniac are another cult name in the UK underground. As a relatively new addition to the scene, these hybrid bastards of black/thrash/death earned international fame with their stellar 2018 EP Subterranean Death Rising. There are some rumours that they’ll be performing new material.
The stage is set.
With no further introductions here is an exclusive double-interview with Sadistic Intent and Sijjin conducted by Nattskog, author of UK fanzine, Shrieks From The Abyss.
SADISTIC INTENT – RICK CORTEZ, GUITARS
As a band founded in the golden age of death metal (ie the late 80s), you have stood stoic through various decades of ebbing trends and flowing whims. What do you think has inspired, annoyed and made sure SADISTIC INTENT has not wavered from the true old school spirit?
RC: “By the late 80s, death metal had become faster and heavier than the thrashmetal scene ever was and we got a feeling of power through this music! It was more than just music, beyond the Extreme Metal [set] of the music, there was a spiritual element. All of these things still resonate within us and have kept Sadistic Intent on the same path all of these years. Trends come and go, and regardless of all the annoying changes within the Metal scene, we don’t give a fuck, we are keeping Sadistic Intent our way…”
What can we expect from your show this week and how have you evolved as a live band since those hallowed years?
“Honestly, we basically have the AC/DC philosophy of ‘it ain’t broken, why fix it?’ Obviously we sound different than AC/DC but I like the fact that for well over 40 years, I know they are not going to change that formula that I enjoyed ever since I first discovered them. If we have evolved, the only way I can see that is we’ve become more solid over the years…”
We know this isn’t your first time touring Europe… How do you feel to be back and what have been some of the high-points of this voyage?
“It feels great to be back! We have met diehard Sadistic Intent fans in different countries all over Europe!! It’s really a great pleasure to be back on stage, its nearly been 3 years! Honestly, it’s difficult to only pick a couple gigs, we’ve had many killer gigs on this tour! I don’t take things for granted – when we first started this band back in the 80s, I never even imagined we’d ever go to Europe. Again, thanks to all the diehards all over Europe, North, South, East and West!! When all is said and done, we’ll look back and say, Europe was bad ass, glad we got to experience that.”
Sadistic Intent has always been a band for diehard maniacs – so we need to know: who are some of the legends that inspired you from day one until now and which bands do you feel are flying the flag of death metal high for the next generation?
“A lot of the bands that inspired us are no longer around. However, the very first band actually had a member that attended our school – I’m talking about Slayer! In particular, I like the 80s Slayer! After that and still in the 80s we got inspired by bands like Sodom, Celtic Frost, Bathory, Kreator… We even ended up joining one of the bands that inspired us, we became the ones who resurrected Possessed! That’s right, without Sadistic Intent, there would not be a Possessed today. By the end of the 80s, there was a second wave of underground death metal demos that were inspiring as well. Nihilist, Death, Autopsy, Morbid Angel, Terrorizer, etc. Death metal has evolved and gone in different directions these days, so as far as keeping the flame burning from the original era of Death Metal, I can tell you. Sadistic Intent is still here raising the flag!”
How should new listeners prepare for your show when it comes to the music? What would you have them listen to first?!
“I would recommend a few different releases and since this tour is 25 years of Ancient Black Earth, that’s the first one, then Resurrection, Invocations Of The Death Ridden, Impending Doom, Eternal Darkness…”
You’ve favoured EPs as your format of choice for decades, why do you steer clear of the typical studio LP? Is a short and sharp attack the only way for Sadistic Intent and Will we get a new EP / LP / split or is the band’s already stellar discography closed?
“EPs from day one just sort of happened, [they weren’t] really planned out that way but I’m glad its worked for us. In reality we broke the big rule of the music industry: No tour unless you have a new record. We were like: ‘We don’t give a shit, we’re still gonna tour!!’ After all these years of meeting Sadistic Intent diehards literally around the world, I have no regrets. Some people have actually told us – please do not put out a full-length. We went against the grain and some people really like that about Sadistic Intent. That being said, we do have some new music and we are really proud of the songs so eventually the plan is to release a full length. I don’t want to promise a release date but perhaps that will be our parting gift to those who enjoy our music…”
One of us visited you at Dark Realm in California, where you can often be found behind the counter. Will you be straight back there after the tour or having a well-deserved rest?
“Once we get back home…we’ll be back to work at Dark Realm Records.”
Any last words for your UK fans…
“The UK and London in particular have been great to Sadistic Intent! Getting into metal from the very beginning, bands like Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Motorhead, Venom, Napalm Death, Carcass, etc. It’s a special place for us and we’re grateful to the British legions of Sadistic Intent, fuckin’ hails to you all!! We will not be around forever, so we look forward to seeing you!!”
Sijjin is an Arabic word, Necros Christos was of course, Greek. Where does your fascination with these archaic languages come from and what importance does it hold for the band?
MG: “I have been asked this one so often that I always feel a bit guilty by fucking with readers’ patience. When I was a kid, my father was kind of a passionate hobby archaeologist who took me to numerous excavation sites all around the globe. I learned to love the sand, the breeding sun and the dust – needless to say hearing all the foreign tongues made a huge impression on me. I remember I was always fond of dark, mysterious stories, so here we are now, bringing Sijjin to the world.”
The cradle of civilisation is fertile land for death metal lyrics – The epic of Gilgamesh, the conquests of ancient empires, mass flayings, imperious proclamations, malevolent Gods etc. What influenced you most about this period and how did you want to translate it into your music?
“As said, I always was fond of the dark, so all the gloomy tales from whatever oriental culture was and still is of my interest. I mostly pick up a theme and transform its facts into an obscure horror story which suits Sijjin just perfectly.”
Last year, Sumerian Promises was released by Sepulchral Voice Records, a blindingly heavy debut. Clearly you are inspired by the very earliest incarnations of Death Metal (such as our headliners perhaps), so in your own words, who are the Death Metal elite?
“If you speak of today, it’s clearly Sadistic Intent for me. No other band has kept that much integrity over more than a 35-year lifespan while never selling their souls to any form of the fucking music business. I hate the fucking mainstream, I hate all the glossy fancy paper press with all those fake fucking poser pictures. Peruvian Mortem is another leading death metal force of today, plus I admire my brothers of Grave Miasma since their [Goat] Mölester days.”
Thematically you personally Malte have always gravitated towards ancient history, the middle east and its music and traditions. Do you believe that death metal is greatest when it channels the more spiritual/occult side of human thought, or is gore / horror just as effective or relevant?
“I am clearly going for the first, which should be no surprise at all. But of course, if you take an album like Scream Bloody Gore or Mental Funeral, it works perfectly as well.”
You formed in 2019 with a demo the same year and a full-length two years later, which is very prolific. What inspired this creative energy and will we continue to experience Sijjin at this kind of pace?
“This is not quite correct – the internet lacks precise information. We formed in 2017, after we did a trip to PartySan where we made an oath to start a band together. But indeed, the fire is burning strong in Sijjin, I never felt so comfortable in a band before. Both my brothers are damned geniuses and I love them as true friends and the most incredible bandmates one can have.”
You’ve been touring hard over the last few weeks. Which cities and countries have been the best so far and do you have any maniacal tales/anecdotes to share?
“Oh yes, indeed I have, but it shall stay in our minds. Let me say it was an absolute pleasure to go to Croatia… what a great bunch of maniacs. Chaos Descends festival was also one of the highlights, Prague too. I must say it gives me much courage and hope to see many young, dedicated metalheads at our shows which means this music – although it might be labelled as old school – has a fucking future! Let Metal never die and shall let us stand proud against the selling out and commercialisation some labels, festivals and mags want to achieve.”
Do you also have some words for you UK fans? We’re expecting something like Ashurbanipal’s violent, doom-laden proclamations…
“Haha, damn, I like this one. We always do our best, no matter if there’re ten people or one hundred. Let’s make no great words here and see ya all at the show, we look forward to it. Thank you!”
Article: Alex de Moller | Interviews: Nattskog (Shrieks from the Abyss)
Sijjin and Sadistic Intent will be playing with Adorior and Necromaniac at the Electrowerkz, Torrens Street, in Angel, London this – Saturday 30th July.Doors open at 6 PM. An official afterparty will be held at Helgi’s Bar until 3am.