Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Chthonic (band)

Chthonic is a Taiwanese symphonic black metal band, formed in 1995 in Taipei. The group incorporates influences from traditional Taiwanese music including instruments such as the ''erhu'' .

Since their formation, Chthonic released four studio albums, starting in 1999 with the debut ''Where the Ancestors' Souls Gathered'', followed by 2000's ''9th Empyrean'', in 2002 ''Relentless Recurrence'', and 2006's ''Seediq Bale''.


The band's stated goal is to use their music to bring ancient history and mythology into the modern era, especially the tragic history and unique myths of Taiwan . The name "Chthonic" is a Greek word which refers to the earth and can have implications of the underworld.

In 2003, they won the Best Band Award at the Taiwan Golden Melodies Award Ceremony. The band is also banned in parts of China for their political views.

The lead vocalist, Freddy Lim, is notably active in the political scene and supports Taiwan independence.

In 2007 he and other artists organized an international music festival to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the 228 Incident, entitled "Spirit of Taiwan: With justice we cure this nation".

On March 30, 2007, it was confirmed that Chthonic were to be part of the 2007 Ozzfest tour as a rotating second stage act. While taking part in Ozzfest, they also toured as a support act for in July and August and as a headliner in September.

On August 3, 2007, Chthonic flew from the United States to Germany to play at Wacken Open Air. Unfortunately, their instruments were not delivered on time, so Su-Nung had to play a keyboard instead of his ''erhu''.

Lyrical themes

While some songs have their lyrics partly or entirely written in Taiwanese, Japanese, or Taiwanese aboriginal language, most of the band's songs have their lyrics written entirely in classical Chinese , which is rarely seen in contemporary Chinese music. Taking advantage of classical Chinese's feature of being a monosyllabic language, many songs, especially those in earlier albums, used plenty of parallel sentences in their lyrics to create an epic atmosphere.

The themes mostly surround early Taiwanese colonizers' defiant spirit, fictional war between aborigine's gods with Han's gods, Taiwanese folklore and mythology, and the historical event known as Wushe Incident, which is a rebellion against Japanese governor by Seediq people.

Although the lyrics are quite profound compared to most contemporary Taiwanese songs, many Taiwanese people don't prefer black metal vocals and said that they couldn't understand anything sung by Freddy, which is probably why Chthonic is said to be more famous in western countries than in Taiwan.


Current members

*Freddy, Left Face of Maradou –
*Doris, Thunder Tears – , backing vocals
*Jesse, The Infernal –
*Dani, Azathothian Hands –
*CJ, Dispersed Fingers – piano, synthesizer
*Su-Nung, The Bloody String – erhu

Former members

*Alexia – keyboard
*A-Jay – drums
*Luis – keyboard, vocals
*Sheryl – keyboard
*Vivien – keyboard
*Ambrosia – keyboard
*Null – guitar
*Wang – drums
*Zac – guitar
*Yu – bass
*Ellis – guitar
*Terry – drums
*Man 6 – bass

Session members

*Reno Killerich – drums; on ''Seediq Bale''
*Sandee Chan – vocals; on ''Seediq Bale''


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bar:Vocal text:Freddy from:01/01/1996 till:end color:Album
bar:Guitar text:"Ellis" from:01/01/1996 till:01/01/1998 color:NoAlbum
bar:Guitar text:"Zac" from:01/01/1998 till:01/01/1999 color:Album
bar:Guitar text:"Null" from:01/01/1999 till:01/05/2000 color:NoAlbum
bar:Guitar text:"Jesse" from:01/05/2000 till:end color:Album
bar:Bass text:"Man 6" from:01/01/1996 till:01/01/1997 color:NoAlbum
bar:Bass text:"Yu" from:01/01/1997 till:11/07/1999 color:Album
bar:Bass text:"Doris" from:11/07/1999 till:end color:Album
bar:Keyboard text:"Ambrosia" from:01/05/1996 till:01/03/2001 color:Album
bar:Keyboard text:"Vivien" from:01/03/2001 till:20/11/2002 color:Album
bar:Keyboard text:"Sheryl" from:20/11/2002 till:01/07/2003 color:NoAlbum
bar:Keyboard text:"Luis" from:01/07/2003 till:01/01/2004 color:NoAlbum
bar:Keyboard text:"Alexia" from:01/01/2004 till:01/10/2005 color:Album
bar:Keyboard text:"CJ" from:01/10/2005 till:end color:Album
bar:Drum text:"Terry" from:01/01/1996 till:01/01/1998 color:NoAlbum
bar:Drum text:"Wang" from:01/01/1998 till:11/07/1999 color:Album
bar:Drum text:"A-Jay" from:11/07/1999 till:01/01/2005 color:Album
bar:Drum text:"Dani" from:01/01/2005 till:end color:Album
bar:ErHu text:"Freddy" from:01/01/1996 till:01/01/2006 color:Album
bar:ErHu text:"Sunong" from:01/01/2006 till:end color:Album


Studio albums

*''Where the Ancestors' Souls Gathered''
*''9th Empyrean''
*''Relentless Recurrence''
*''Seediq Bale''


*''Satan's Horns''


*''Deep Rising''

Compilation albums

*''Anthology: A Decade on the Throne''

Live album

*''A Decade on the Throne Live'' – Live DVD + 2CD



*''A Decade on the Throne Live'' – Live DVD + 2CD


*''Spred the Qi'' – Double VCD

==759 Interview with Freddy Lim], ''Bright Eyes'', January 26, 2007
*, Ashiana Videos, August 20, 2007

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