|Genres||Blackened death metal
Melodic death metal (mid)
Death metal (early)
|Labels||Shark Records, Metal Blade|
|Associated acts||Epica, Autumn|
God Dethroned was formed in 1991 by singer and guitar player Henri Sattler, with Hans Leegstra (guitar) and Ard de Weerd. Sattler and Leegstra had previously been in Dysentery; Leegstra, quickly after the band formed, left the music scene altogether. They recorded a demo, Christ Hunt, in 1991, after which Marco Arends joined on bass. Their first album, The Christhunt, was released on the German label Shark. Meanwhile, Arends left (to rejoin Altar) and was replaced by Marcel Beukeveld. The Christhunt did poorly; the label had refused to feature a dissected rat on the cover and did not promote the record at all. Dethroned went on hiatus the following year, in part because Sattler's anti-Christian sympathy was not shared by all, and Sattler formed a new group called Ministry of Terror. In 1996, after that band's 1994 album Fall of Life and a supporting European tour (with Impaled Nazarene), Sattler re-formed God Dethroned with guitarist Jens van der Valk (who didn't share Sattler's anti-Christian sympathies either), bassist Beef, and drummer Roel Sanders. With this lineup a deal was signed with Metal Blade, and they issued The Grand Grimoire in Europe in 1997; the album was released in the U.S. the following year, along with a re-issue of The Christhunt, which featured the original cover art, with the dissected rat.
The Grand Grimorie did much better than The Christhunt did, and the band soon entered into a sort of high point. The lineup of Sattler, Van Der Valk, Beef and Sanders would record the album Bloody Blasphemy, which many fans of the band consider to be their best work to date. Successful tours and shows with bands like Marduk, Immortal, and Deicide would later follow. After Bloody Blasphemy, Sanders soon left the band and was replaced by Puerto Rican drummer Tony Laureano. Laureano played with the band up till 2003, when he received an offer to join the American death metal band Nile. He would record only one album with the band, 2001's Ravenous.
A new drummer was found, Ariën Van Weesenbeek, and the band entered the studio at the end of 2002 to record Into the Lungs of Hell. More problems began to follow, as Beef and Jens were tired with the direction of the band and wanted to push for a more heavy and extreme sound with more anti-Christian lyrics (themes that had begun to start to fade to an extent on Ravenous), whereas Sattler wanted to keep the band at a more melodic and darker sound with lyrics focused more on darkness, horror, nihilism, and other themes. After the recording and a short amount of touring for Into the Lungs of Hell, both the bassist and guitarist left the band, and Henri Sattler had to go look out for members once again. Bassist Henk Zinger was quickly brought into the fold, and Ariën van Weesenbeek recommended Belgian guitarist Isaac Delahaye to the band. This lineup would finish up the remaining tour dates and would go back into the studio to record another album, 2005's The Lair of the White Worm.
After touring for a little while, the band then went back into the studio and released The Toxic Touch in 2006.
In January 2008, two personnel changes were made. Since Ariën van Weesenbeek had joined Dutch Symphonic metal band Epica full-time in December 2007, he was replaced with former drummer Roel Sanders. After a writing period, Passiondale was recorded and released in early 2009. The album's concept is based on The Battle of Passchendaele during World War I. Once the album was completed, auditions were held and Susan Gerl was selected as the new guitar player. Shortly after the release Roel Sanders was asked to leave the band and Michiel Van Der Plicht was brought in.
2010 Henri Sattler made the following statement in a Metal Blade Press release: "We are halfway through the writing process for a new album, which we will record starting end of May. First, we'll play on the Killfest tour in the U.S. supporting Overkill together with label mates Woe of Tyrants and many other great bands.
Abigail Williams' axeman Ian Jekelis will take over touring duties for Susan, with whom we parted ways last January. We will announce the name of our new shredder right before we play our first European festival in May."
Shortly after, guitarist Danny Tunker (Prostitute Disfigurement, Detonation) was announced as the new lead guitarist.
The New God Dethroned album 'Under The Sign Of The Iron Cross' was released through Metal Blade on November, 22nd 2010 and met rave reviews. It marked the first time God Dethroned became 'Album Of The Month' in Holland's Aardschok magazine.
Sattler announced that 2011 will be the last year of the band and their final show will be in December, but they performed at 70000 Tons of Metal-festival in January 2012, after which they officially disbanded.
Henri Sattler often used significant parts of (Dutch) history and legends in his lyrics. He used the story of Willem Barentsz on the song 'The Somberness Of Winter'; the legendary sea story about The Flying Dutchman in the song 'Soul Capture 1562'. The song 'The Serpent King', starts with a soundclip from the movie Death Wish, with Charles Bronson:
'- Do you believe in Jesus?
- Yes I do
- Well, you're gonna meet him'
The song The Christhunt (1991, re-issued in 1998) quotes from the movie Warlock, featuring Julian Sands as a Warlock in search for a grand grimoire. The second God Dethroned album is also entitled 'The Grand Grimoire' and features a song of the same name, which also describes the Warlock's quest from the movie.
On the album 'The Grand Grimoire' the undisclosed theory of the father of Jesus Christ is given a previously unknown angle, in the song 'Under A Silver Moon'.
The last two God Dethroned albums, 'Passiondale' (2009) and 'Under The Sign Of The Iron Cross' (2010) were initially intended to be a part of a trilogy about World War I, so Sattler stated in an interview with Dutch webzine Lords of Metal": There's still a lot more to write about, so I will continue doing that. At least until I finished my trilogy. It's not that easy to write about this war, since all your inspiration has to come from books and very little is widely spread knowledge or put on film. Despite these difficulties, it's an ocean of inspiration.
- Serpent King Guitars
God Dethroned originally formed as a death metal band. When they reformed in 1996, they switched to blackened death metal and stayed that way until the release of Into the Lungs of Hell, when they shifted to melodic death metal. They are, however, "an important part of the Dutch black metal scene", according to The Encyclopedia of Dutch Black Metal. Their final two albums saw a return to their original blackened death metal sound.
- Final Lineup
- Henri "T.S.K." Sattler - vocals, guitar (1991-1993, 1996-2012)
- Michiel Van Der Plicht - drums (2009-2012)
- Danny Tunker - guitar (2010-2012)
- Henk "Henke" Zinger - bass (2003-2012)
- Former members
- Ard de Weerd - drums (1991-1993)
- Hans Leegstra - guitar (1991-1993)
- Marco Barends - bass (1991-1992)
- Marcel Beukeveld - bass (1992-1993)
- Jens van der Valk - guitar (1996-2003)
- Beef - bass (1996-2003)
- Roel Sanders - drums (1996-1999, 2008-2009)
- Tony Laureano - drums (1999-2001)
- Ariën van Weesenbeek - drums (2001-2008)
- Isaac Delahaye - guitar (2003-2009)
- Susan Gerl - guitar (2009-2010)
- Touring musicians
- Ian Jekelis - guitar (2010)
- Christhunt demo (1991)
- The Christhunt (1992) (Reissued in 1998)
- The Grand Grimoire (1997)
- Bloody Blasphemy (1999)
- The Ancient Ones compilation (2000)
- Ravenous (2001)
- Into the Lungs of Hell (2003)
- The Lair of the White Worm (2004)
- The Toxic Touch (2006)
- Passiondale (2009)
- Under The Sign Of The Iron Cross (2010)
- "Lords of Metal interview with Henri Sattler of God Dethroned by Ramon van H.". Lordsofmetal.nl. Retrieved 2010-12-01.
- "Lords of Metal Serpent King Guitars interview with Henri Sattle by Ramon van H". Lordsofmetal.nl. Retrieved 2012-05-01.