To be a truly Satanic band doesn't mean to wear spikes, warpaint or tattoos with reversed crosses on forehead. Clowns use Satanic image to sell albums to other clowns and losers. To be a Satanist means to be elite. That's why I'm proud that this issue of Novum Vox Mortis has the interview with one of the most hated and feared by the Christians Vincent Crowley, Magister of the Church of Satan and the Priest of UR - Temple Of The Vampire. Vincent and Peter H. Gilmore are the main forces behind ACHERON, a cult death metal act. The band has just unleashed its totally new album “Those Who Have Risen” on Full Moon Productions and I decided that it would be a good reason for a short chat.
How are things going on in the camp of ACHERON? I know that you had some line-up changes…
We have just been working on getting the material down for our next album "The Apocalypse". We've also recorded songs for several tribute albums, including tributes of BLACK SABBATH, JUDAS PRIEST, KISS, KREATOR, MERCYFUL FATE, MOTORHEAD, and IRON MAIDEN. Presently the band consists of Vincent Crowley on Vocals and Bass, Michael Estes on Lead Guitar, Jonathan Lee on Drums, and we just hired ex- ANGEL CORPSE guitarist Bill Taylor to be our Rhythm Guitarist. Peter H. Gilmore is still doing intros for ACHERON albums and Adina Blase is the keyboardist we are working with at live shows.
As far as I know, ACHERON signed a multialbum deal with Moribund a couple of years ago, and “Those Who Have Risen” was supposed to appear on this label. Still, the album was released through Full Moon Productions. What are the reasons of this change?
After we recorded "Those Who Have Risen", we waited for over a year for Moribund records to release it. We couldn't wait anymore, it was delaying our careers. So Odin released us of our contract and Full Moon Productions picked us up. I'm not sure what's up with Moribund, but there are no hard feelings. Full Moon Productions has been doing a great job this far.
ACHERON have existed for more than ten years in metal scene. When did you become involved in music? At what age?
I started to play guitar at the age of 16 years old and was in my first band by 18 years old. Bands like VENOM, DESTRUCTION, SLAYER, SODOM, CELTIC FROST, and BATHORY influenced my way down the path of Underground Metal. Satanism helped me decide my lyrical content.
Your latest album was inspired by the Temple of Vampire myths. Why did you, the priest of the Church Of Satan, become involved in another religious organization?
The Temple Of The Vampire is based on an ancient practice of true Vampirism, stemming from UR. Their practices are "very Satanic", but using other mythos of manipulation and magic. A fellow Church Of Satan priest introduced me to the organization and I have been a supporter ever since. Satan and Tiamat are true kindred spirits!
You say that vampires do exist. You say that religions were created by vampires, vampires can fly, shift shape and they have a superhuman strength. It sounds like a teenage Hollywood horror movie, isn’t it?
You would really have to study the practices of true Sumerian Vampirism to understand it totally. No, it is not Hollywood bullshit, it is a real Occultic practice. Those who are predators know the secrets to Vampirism.
Black metal bands like CRADLE OF FILTH, DARK FUNERAL, etc. use vampiric image in their music. What does the Temple of Vampire think about that trend in death/ black metal?
Music is a form of artistic expression, so bands like that don't bother me at all. The Temple Of The Vampire has no problem with these bands. But again, you would have to know the ideas of the Temple. I think today's metal scene has unique bands and clone bands. I'm sure you can tell which ones are which. The original bands will always prevail. But ACHERON form of Vampirism is nothing like the ideas set forth by other bands. People who read our lyrics know we are not drones.
As a priest of the Church Of Satan, how could you describe your religion?
Satanism is the worship of the self. Satan is an archetype, not an actual being. Satanism is a balance of everything. We are the predators of the world that use the forces of Darkness to manipulate the powers of magic. "The Satanic Bible" by Anton LaVey tells it like it is. Satanism is reality!
Many people think that the Satanists are the same as the Christians: they use pentagrams, reversed crosses, etc. Don't you think that it would be easier for you not to use such an image and choose a less radical name for your church?
No, Satan is the perfect metaphor. In mythology he was the one who wanted to rise above God and rule his own kingdom. The symbols we use are very powerful ones and we use them with pride. The Church Of Satan could care less about how the masses perceive them as being. The elite will seek us out. The age of Satan is upon us, beware!
I know that the Church Of Satan had problems with the house of Anton LaVey about a year ago…
Thus far nothing has happened yet. But the battle still rages on. We hope to save it as a Satanic museum for Church Of Satan members. May the fires of Hell forever burn in your souls! AD MAIOREM SATANAE GLORIAM! Hail Der Wolfen! ACHERON lives on!
I know that you tore the Bible in front of 2000 Christians. You do the Bible studies?
Some asshole Christian preacher was debating me at a church and he started to mock our album "Rites of the Black Mass”, saying it was "evil" and that it was leading children into Satanism. After he threw down our CD, I showed him the same respect he had shown me. I held up a "Holy Bible" and ripped it up on the altar of the church. This pissed off a lot of pious Jesus freaks. We were then told to leave and were escorted out the side doors by the police. It was great fun! I love making Christians angry. Fuck them and their God!