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Music / Demilich

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Demilich is a Finnish Death Metal band, formed in 1990. They're known for their sole album, 1993's Nespithe, released three years after their formation, which for a long time afterward was an obscure curiosity until the advent of the Internet. Despite them not releasing any new full-length albums since 1993, Antti Boman has said repeatedly that the band has not split, playing a show once every few years. The band's most recent recorded material is on their career-length retrospective 20th Adversary of Emptiness, released in 2014, which contains three new songs from 2006 alongside the band's entire recorded output up to that point.


Demilich's style was very unique among early Finnish death metal bands, with an emphasis on chromatic riffs, atonal solos, and wild time signature changes. Their work would lay the foundation for future Technical Death Metal bands.

Most of their material is available for free in up to three different formats, usually including lossless FLAC, on their website. Only one demo track from 1991 and the three new songs from 20th Adversary of Emptiness are currently missing.

The band currently consists of:

  • Antti Boman (guitar, vocals)
  • Aki Hytönen (guitar)
  • Jarkko Luomajoki (bass)
  • Mikko Virnes (drums)

Despite them only releasing one finished work, Demilich released a handful of demos between their founding and Nespithe:

  • Regurgitation of Blood (1991)
  • The Four Instructive Tales ...of Decomposition (1991)
  • ...Somewhere Inside the Bowels of Endlessness... (1992)
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  • The Echo (1992)

Tropes that apply to Demilich:

  • And I Must Scream: Much of the lyrical content on Nespithe can be interpreted as this. "(Within) the Chamber of Whispering Eyes" is an obvious example.
  • Badass Baritone: Antti Boman may have the most badass baritone in all of Death Metal.
  • Cosmic Horror Story: Nearly all of their lyrics.
  • Death Metal: An oddball in the then-contemporary Finnish death metal scene, where most bands focused on super-dark, bass-heavy production and slow, atmospheric riffing, Demilich went for a more upbeat, surreal, and technical angle with deceptively shifting time signatures and tempo shifts.
  • Digital Piracy Is Okay: In fact, they release very nearly all of their material for free on their website.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: And how!
  • Harsh Vocals: Antti Boman is infamous for having one of the most guttural voices in the entire genre. Unlike most vocalists near Boman's range, all his vocal work is completely natural.
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  • Indecipherable Lyrics: One of the most infamous examples in death metal, even among metalheads.
  • Long Title: Throughout their entire discography, the band has indulged in this. The most egregious example has to be "The Planet That Once Used to Absorb Flesh in Order to Achieve Divinity and Immortality (Suffocated to the Flesh That It Desired...)".
  • Metal Scream: Boman uses a particularly deep and inhuman-sounding Type 2.
  • Mohs Scale of Lyrical Hardness: While their lyrics lack the over-the-top violence typically found in death metal, they're still bizarre and nightmarish enough to score a 7-9.
  • Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: A solid 10, similarly to most Death Metal bands, though they are anything but a typical death metal band. Their vocals are terrifyingly deep, but not especially harsh.
  • One-Book Author: Like many Finnish death metal bands of the era, Demilich only released one album before splitting. Zig-Zagged in that they've since gotten back together and recorded new songs (though not enough for an album), and haven't ruled out the possibility of further new releases.
  • Sdrawkcab Name: The song title "egasseM neddiH A - ortnI".
  • Surreal Horror: A strong component of their lyrics, which the music fits to a high degree.
  • Technical Death Metal: One of the very first death metal bands not to play in a tech-thrash style, instead playing a more abstract style that would be later associated with prog metal bands such as Gorguts.
  • Teen Genius: Boman was 16 when he formed the band and 18 when they recorded Nespithe.
  • Up to Eleven: Nespithe was this to death metal at the time. The complexity of the riffs hearken to Immolation's Here in Afternote  or Gorguts' Obscuranote , but both bands were playing more-or-less conventional death metal at the time of Nespithe's release.However...  Meanwhile, contemporary technical death metal bands at the time included Death and Atheist, who were both rooted in the more jazz-fusion brand of tech-death, and Suffocation, who, while brutal in their own right, didn't have the same sort of twisting, atonal and atmospheric riffs that Demilich played.
  • Word Purée Title: The song title "Erecshyrinol" was obtained by taking the phrase "No Lyrics Here", slicing it up into three-letter segments, and reversing their order. They did the same thing with the phrase "The Spine" to obtain the album title Nespithe.
  • Word Salad Lyrics: Averted. Contrary to what their music would suggest, Demilich's lyrics usually tell a complete and coherent story. Tying in to this, their long and bizarre song names are actually good summaries of what's going on in each song, lyric-wise.


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