Satan's Cross (Mexico) 10/06/2021
Although they have released very few material, when you listen to Satan’s Cross’ music, you immediately understand what they are and what they want to express. Their dedication to the old school sound, combined with their deep knowledge of the occult, creates a unique and appealing result. I spoke with the two musicians behind Satan’s Cross to get and present to you this bizarre and unique band.
1. Hello S. Thanks for the interview. How are you? How are things going in Mexico? Has the universal covid situation affected Mexico too? How do you cope with all these?
S.: Thanks for the interview. I am doing fine but to be honest I am part of a few who were not affected that much by the virus. I mostly believe we all can cope hardships by accepting what is inevitable and embracing the situation as it presents itself to us.
2. The band exists since 2014, seven years now. Would you like to present its members and give me more information about the project? How did you meet with M., who had the idea to form a band and how did you come up with the name?
M.: S. and I have been good friends since our teenage years, we met because we have more friends in common and also we were at the same languages school, but besides those causal factors, I believe we met and also connected because of unconscious matters.
S.: Both M. and I are the core of the band. He writes the lyrics while I do the music and a line here and there, and we both contribute to the concept and ideas that the band explores on the releases. However, a couple of friends do contribute significantly by adding their talents and ideas to our recordings. Without them, our music would certainly not be the same. The idea to form the bands occurred without much planning, I started playing with some ideas in my head and thought of S. as I believe he has a finer way with words than I do and shares my taste for occult heavy metal. The name was inspired by a Mercyful Fate song.
3. Everything in your latest release points to your deep knowledge and affiliation with the occult. How did you get into the occult and how does it affect your life?
M.: I see the occult as driving forces of nature that affects us as human beings in every aspect of our lives since we are born. Occultism is a projection of ourselves and of our deepest unconscious aspects as human beings, the whole symbols and gnoses are nothing more than that, and that’s one of the richest aspects of it, as it’s a path to our deepest self. Personally, I got naturally into it, as it was a matter of interest since I remember having heard the word “magic”.
S.: I think M. pretty much summed it up. The occult for me is a contact with the infinite grades of shadows that form the Beyond. A path to become what I have always been. My initiation into the mystical began at the time I was educated under Catholicism at home, exploring the Right Hand Path and what it had to offer until I discovered rock music.
4. Your music has deep roots into the ‘80ies. Which bands or artists have influenced you as a person and which ones, do you think, have influenced the music of Satan’s Cross?
M.: In the vocal-field and in the band, I can say that Venom, Bathory, Sabbat (Japan), Death SS, Paul Chain Violet Theatre, Mortuary Drape, Tudor (Czech) have been some of my main inspirations and influences. As a person, I definitely have to say Black Sabbath has been the band that made the biggest impact in my life, punk bands like Misfits, Dead Boys, Eskorbuto, also T. Rex, Thin Lizzy, Witchfynde, Blue Öyster Cult and Deep Purple. The biggest influences to the band are not really artists or bands but rather the records, who hold the actual magic. Stuff like Melissa, In the Darkness by Paul Chain Violet Theatre, Land of Mystery by Black Hole or The Story of Death SS have been the ones that have had the biggest impact on me and my vision of what occult heavy metal is supposed to be.
5. You are the one responsible for the music. How do you get inspired to write music? Would you like to describe to me, your process of creating a song?
S.: I don’t think too much about it at the moment and just play with ideas and melodies in my head until a release is created and given certain “structure”, I believe music has to be more intuitive and less logical.
6. M. is the one responsible for the vocals in Satan’s Cross and I believe that his performance is also very important for your music. Do you want to tell me more about the vocals’ performance?
M.: In our first recording, everything came out naturally, I just felt that the band was the perfect channel I needed to express myself and my interests in the occult in a more direct and also different way (as I have already done that in Violet Magick as well, but with a different perspective and motive). In the latest EP, my main intention was to keep it raw and weird, I was listening a lot to the Ultra Black Metal compilation of Tudor demos, and I really wanted to project that raw, uncompromised and passionate feeling, but imbuing a different personality to each song as we are talking about different entities in first, second and third of the fallen.
S.: I also do some of the backing vocals and I see vocals as important as any other instrument we use.
7. After more than a year of the release of ‘Celebration of the Fallen’, are you still satisfied with the result? Is there anything that if you could, you would have done it differently?
S.: Not really, I’m pretty much satisfied with the release as what it is.
8. This is the first time that you collaborate with Sun & Moon Records for a release. Are you satisfied with the collaboration and their support and the distribution of your music?
S.: It isn’t technically the first time we released music with Sun & Moon as its sub-label Mirgilus Siculorum released the demo of a band I used to play in called Mabbul. (The new Mabbul EP will actually be released by Sun & Moon Records). They are great and I believe a perfect label for us music-wise as we seem to share the same taste for eccentric and rotten evil metal. Hails to those Transylvanians.
9. You may get this question too often, but someone will notice that in seven years of existence you have released just a single and an EP. Is this a matter of lack of time or something else?
S.: I believe it has more to do with the fact that we view music not merely as entertainment or a product but rather as our Will directed towards the magic(k) of the riff. That’s why we don’t focus on releasing lots of stuff. The main goal is to use the band as something to further our path into what we defined as “the occult”, without ignoring the fact that self-indulgence and narcissism also play a part in this, such is the contradiction we embrace.
10. Do you have plans to release a full-length album in the near future or you will go again for something shorter? Do you want to give me more information about that?
S.: We’re still in a very early stage of thinking what we’ll do next. Perhaps a split or a longer EP. But eventually a full-length will be released.
11. Have you ever played live with Satan’s Cross? If no, have you ever thought about it? Some musicians believe that Black Metal should not be played live as it is a very serious and personal music. What is your opinion about that?
S.: Yes, we were planning to do some gigs before the pandemic and were talking with some of our friends to help us with the rest of the instruments. Something may happen in the future but we’re not in any hurry.I understand where people may be coming from regarding their opposition live performance. The esoteric state does not depend on the live performance as I believe records are where things can manifest better, but I also think that a certain esoteric state can be conveyed playing live. Bands like Kiss, Alice Cooper, Black Widow, Arthur Brown, Death SS, Venom, Black Hole, Mortuary Drape, Mercyful Fate, etc had a huge impact in our teens with their live shows (and I would even daresay rituals in some cases) that included stolen bones, desecrated gravestones, inverted crosses, spiderwebs, fire-breathing, beheadings, sacrifices, and incense. It is only natural that we use some of these elements to enhance that same state.
12. I guess that if you had a lockdown period in Mexico too, what better thing to do than listening to music? Would you like to tell me the best five albums that you listened to the past year?
M.: Personally I can say that the lockdown was a perfect opportunity to reconnect with lots of bands and albums that I hadn’t listened in a while and also to discover new music, I spent about 6 months listening to my whole record collection and these were the ones I spinned the most: • Mötley Crüe - Too Fast for Love • Thin Lizzy - Thunder and Lightning • AC/DC - High Voltage • KISS - KISS • Motörhead - Motörhead
S.: I have recently played and recorded music with new wave/post punk bands like Zotz and Umbral and therefore I have spent this time listening to records like Pornography by The Cure, everything by Décima víctima, Joy Division, The Chameleons, El ultimo sueño, Parálisis permanente and A Flock of Seagulls. In addition, a healthy, daily dose of the Motörhead self-titled, Envoy of Death by Sarcofagus and Fire and Steel by Flames of Hell.
13. What is your opinion about the Mexican Black Metal scene? Are you in contact or cooperation with any musician there? Are there any bands or artists, old or new ones, from Mexico that you would like to recommend?
M.: The whole Mexican scene is chaos, no real structure here. Only very few good bands regarding black metal, but some of the ones I really like are the legendary Xibalba Itzaes, Hacavitz, some specific releases of Funereal Moon, and Hell Desecrator (other band of S.).
S.: I think there are quite a few good bands, artists, labels, zines, distributors and show-organizers but the majority of the scene is full of people with bad music taste and zero underground spirit, mostly both. Regarding black metal, most bands follow the trendy norsecore sound but there are quite a few great records such as Ah Dzam Poop Ek.
14. For the last question, would you like to tell me, your ten most important Metal albums of all time and why?
M.: • Black Sabbath - Black Sabbath (started it all, simply amazing, obscure and mind blowing for the time) • Motörhead - Motörhead (game changer, a return to the roots of rock n roll, influential on every extreme metal genre and punk) • Venom - Welcome to Hell (game changer, the first black metal album, the first album with a whole different and explicit satanic perspective) • Venom - Black Metal (you all know why this one is here) • Iron Maiden - Iron Maiden (along with Angel Witch’s debut, the most beautiful and top tier albums from the NWOBHM, also super influential) • Metallica - Kill Em All (a total game changer, Diamond Head and Holocaust on 45rpm) • Bathory - Bathory (I’ll quote Speed Kills III: Sweden’s finest, deserve to be as big as ABBA) • Discharge - Hear Nothing See Nothing Say Nothing (not metal, but highly influential in every extreme metal genre, maybe bands like Blasphemy wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for this) • Sarcófago - INRI (worshiped by the whole Norwegian bands, and by every band in black/death metal who is really into the good shit) • Blasphemy - Fallen Angel of Doom (game changer, influenced Beherit)
S.: M. mentioned the important stuff and most of my additions are throughout my answers to the previous questions. I would only add stuff like Sin After Sin, Sad Wings of Destiny, Pagan Altar, Don’t Break the Oath, None Shall Defy, Cloven Hoof, Ritual by Master’s Hammer, Zjevení and 666 by Kat.
15. Thanks for the interview. Would you like to add anything for conclusion?
M.: Thanks for the interest and support.