Beyond Acheron – I wanted a good opening for the “Beyond Acheron” to give the listener a feeling of beginning a dark musical journey. Very much like the start of a horror movie. This album is very symbolic of my transition from ACHERON to VINCENT CROWLEY. My good friend Ludo Lejeune of MELEK THA created this into for us. You will hear a storm with sinister bells ringing, with the sounds of the river of woe and a pounding heartbeat.


Lyrically, this is a story based on the Greek mythos of a person that has died, and his soul travels past the rivers Styx and ACHERON to finally gain access to the underworld of the dead. Metaphorically, this song represents the ending of ACHERON and the renewal of a new music career. Guitarist Art Taylor wrote the music for this song, and we had been working on this since we played in ACHERON together. I felt a combination of riffs was perfect for making the lyrics come to life.


This is pretty much a sinister love story about a man whose wife passes away and can’t accept the loss. His infatuation is so extreme that he steals her corpse and makes a shrine dedicated to her. When I wrote the music to this song, I wanted it to be doomy and moody, with some tempo changes to fit the emotions in the lyrics. Originally I wanted the piece to have a similar vibe as the slower songs from “Under the Sign of the Black Mark” by BATHORY, but my BLACK SABBATH, MERCYFUL FATE, and even DANZIG influences also came out in this song.


The theme of this album is death. So this track is about the lore of the Grim Reaper. It shows no discrimination when the swinging scythe comes to claim life and how La Muerte answers to no gods or devils. When writing the music to this song, much of my inner CELTIC FROST poured out in its creation. A tune that is mostly very slow and heavy, except a D-Beat transition for one section.


One of my favorite Edgar Allan Poe stories and movie interpretations has always been “The Masque of the Red Death.” This song tells Poe’s masterpiece of a horror tale from beginning till end. When Art Taylor presented this song to me, he had recorded a layered-up version on his home recording program. I was utterly blown away by the guitar structures. I knew this slow-paced doom composition and sinister melodies would fit perfectly for being the landscape for lyrics such as this. We even added some samples of Vincent Price from his cinematic tour de force.


When I was a child, things like seances, haunting, and possession always intrigued me. I wanted to write my own fictional horror story that encompassed all these things. It starts with a group of people who attempt to summon the ghosts of victims killed in a murder at the same home they were doing the seance. During the ceremony, the medium comes in contact with a diabolical presence, making him want to let the demonic forces inside of himself. Needless to say, the Darkside wins. Originally I wrote this song to be used in ACHERON, and it was played a lot faster with tons of blast beats. When I brought the music back to the table, we told our drummer to try something upbeat but not blast. After some slight changes, the song seemed to fit in with the other ones very nicely. Again, I think the structure of the riffs generates perfect unity with the lyrics.

7. FAREWELL (At Death’s Door):

I always wanted a write a song about what I would say if it were my time to die. It is quite a morbid concept but is very sincere. And I think the lister can interpret in whatever way they want: a blunt statement or a part of a bigger story. All I know is I now have a song to be played at my funeral. My wife hates these lyrics and thinks it is disturbing to write about this topic. But if artistic expression pushes a button on some people, even a loved one, I must be doing something right. There is a heavy Doom Rock & Roll feel within this track. I was wholeheartedly in that mode when writing this song. I just wanted to give it a more aggressive approach with different blendings of vocal styles. After we finished mixing it, the first thing I said to myself was, “I want to hear this on vinyl!”


Ludo Lejeune of MELEK THA ends the album with the perfect finale. The destination is reached, and you can hear the waves of the “river of woe” fading away into the distance as the heartbeat and heart monitor get slower and slower until it stops. Then you hear the flatline sounding. Life and Death have come full circle.

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