Continuing from yesterday’s post and concluding the poorly name “Second Albums by Bands I Like That I Didn’t Know Existed For Far Too Long” series I’m taking a look at Rotting Christ’s second album, Non Serviam, yet another album from a great band that rarely gets brought up, almost to the point where I didn’t know it existed between Thy Mighty Contract and Triarchy of the Lost Lovers. That just could be me and how I find music so if this is a well known and obvious album, well fuck it, because it’s not to me.
Much like The Shadow Throne from yesterday’s review, I find Non Serviam to be a transitional album for Rotting Christ. Gone are the more unrefined and rawer elements of their first album as Non Serviam sees a drastic step up in production quality and theme. The band is still holding to it’s black metal beginnings but now they’re starting to embrace a more theatrical style of playing, one I’ve always associated with the band, and the Hellenic black metal scene. It’s that style that set the Greece scene apart form the Scandinavian scene at the time, I think. But I digress. All the elements of later era Rotting Christ are present here, mainly the fucking dramatic riff explosions, the epic atmosphere created by those pounding drums and that hefty bass, albeit, in a much earlier, more exploratory aspect. The band would surely develop this sound to perfection later but the seeds of it are on Non Serviam. Also starting to creep in (ha ha ha) are the goth and dark metal sounds that the next album Triarchy of the Lost Lovers would explore more in-depth to a point of saturating the bands sound. It’s also the turning point for a lot of Rotting Christ fans. I have no qualms with any Rottting Christ era.
Again, I think that since this album is such a transitional album and much like yesterday’s The Shadowthrone (which came out the same year I might add) finds itself sandwiched between two more prominent albums it’s been a bit overlooked but I think this album is a damn fine one, especially in the Rotting Christ catalog. May even as good and interesting as Thy Mighty Contract. Decide for yourself or just hear a great album from a classic band.