Genre: Death/Black Metal
Origin: United States
Reverend Vincent Crowley unleashed diabolical fury upon the world with his creation of Acheron in 1988. Acheron was evoked to embody the very essence of Satanism, crystallized in the violent sounds of Apocalyptic Black/Death Metal. Crowley joined forces with Peter H. Gilmore, classically trained composer of electronic music and a Magister or the infamous Church Of Satan. The two combined resources to create a unique musical amalgam. Thus began Acheron's descent into darkness.
Acheron released several well-selling demos, generating interest among various labels. Their first demo, Messe Noir, was later pressed as a limited edition 7 inch record (666 copies) on Reaper Records in Belgium. In 1991, the band signed to Turbo Music/JL America Records and recorded their first full length album, Rites of the Black Mass. This became an underground classic, the first metal album to use traditional Black Mass texts with gothic/symphonic interludes between each song. Here was an authentic Satanic Black Mass, demonstrating that Acheron was neither a fad nor a gimmick.
The topic of Acheron's album caught the eye of a short-lived NBC talk show called Cristina. Crowley flew to Miami, Florida, to discuss his views on Satanism and Black/Death Metal music. The show was full of Christian lies and propiganda, yet Crowley stood firm on his beliefs. A clip from the show featuring Reverend Crowley later appeared on the television news show Entertainment Tonight, when they did a story about Cristina.
In 1992, Gutted Records, soon to become Metal Merchant Records, released Alla Xul, a 7 inch record the first 500 copies of which were pressed in blood-red vinyl. With the new label name came a new pressing and format for this release.
That same year, Lethal Records signed the group and released Satanic Victory and Lex Talionis. There was talk about the re-release of a new version of Rites of the Black Mass on the label, but this never ended up manifesting.
Anton Szandor LaVey, the founder and High Priest of the Church Of Satan, kept his eye on Crowley's progress, both musically and as a spokesperson of Satanism. In 1994, Dr. LaVey appointed Crowley to the priesthood of the Church Of Satan, an honor that was proudly accepted. Crowley was later promoted to the rank of Magister, thus proving to be more than a Black/Death Metal musician using Satanic imagery for kicks.
Lethal Record's version of Satanic Victory was not as the band envisioned, so Acheron brought out the album as intended on Metal Merchant Records, which included 2 extra songs and a setting by Peter H. Gilmore of Dr. LaVey's Nine Satanic Statements to serve as intro's and the outro, as well as completely new packaging.
The band's notoriety received attention from Christian commentator and evangelist Bob Larson, host of Talk Back and Bob Larson Live. Crowley was Larson's invited adversary for several stimulating encounters. When Larson visited a church in Largo, Florida, he dared Acheron to confront him face to face. The challenge was met in a debate before 2000 Christians who for their first introduction to real Satanism. When Larson condemned Acheron's music and stage shows, Crowley tore a Holy Bible asunder before the alter and contemptuously tossed the shredded scriptures into the audience of Christian fanatics. Security forces ushered the band through the side exit, avoiding the enraged mob. Larson later dedicated a broadcast of Talk Back to the encounter, admitting the bravery of the band while condemning their philosophy. Larson, unable to resist temptation, later invited Acheron to Denver, Colorado, to appear in his studio to record a debate video release. The result, The Devil and Death Metal, was a memorable one-hour knock-down drag-out clash that became a hotly-traded underground hit.
After a two year hiatus, Crowley started Acheron's wheels in motion again. This time with the new element of keyboardist by the name of John Scott. The keyboards were added to help evolve the music of the band, without compromising the known Acheron style.
An unauthorized Acheron video, called Lust, Sin, Chaos and Blasphemy surfaced in 1995. It was a semi-pro video that used 14 Acheron songs and a previously conducted interview with Reverend Vincent Crowley. It was an extreme production of over-the-top footage combined with Acheron's blahphemous songs. The video is not meant for the weak at heart of the easily offended.
Acheron was featured on several compilation albums, including Turbo Music/JL America Records' Triumph of Death and Brutal Agression, plus Nuclear Blasts European version of Death is Just the Beginning 3.
Presently, Acheron has signed to Moribund Records. There are several new planned releases in the works, which include a mini CD called Anti-God, Anti-Christ, a compilation album of songs from the past albums, demos, and some new tracks, entitled Compendium Diablerie, a new improved version of Hail Victory, which will be called Hail Satanic Victory, and possibly the re-release of Rites of the Black Mass and Lex Talionis. If all goes well, Moribund Records will be the main source of Acheron music.
Later, Acheron will concentrate on their next full length album Those Who Have Risen, which will be based on the mythos of the Temple Of The Vampire. This religious body has blessed Acheron's efforts to produce a call to all those children of the night to preserve their royal bloodline.
- Rites of the Black Mass (1992)
- Lex Talionis (1994)
- Hail Victory (1995)
- Anti-God, Anti-Christ (1996)
- Those Who Have Risen (1998)
- Rebirth: Metamorphosing into Godhood (2003)
- Tribute to the Devil's Music (2003)
- The Final Conflict: Last Days of God (2009)
- Kult des Hasses (2014)
- Messe Noir (1989)
- Promo 1990 (1990)
- Rites of the Black Mass (1991)
- Satanic Supremacy (2008)
- Satanic Victory (1994)
- Xomaly (2002)
- Alla Xul (1992)
- Necromanteion Communion (1998)
- Lex Talionis / Satanic Victory (1999)
- Compendium Diablerie - The Demo Days (2001)
- Decade Infernus 1988-1998 (2004)
Vincent Crowley - Guitars (1988-1991, 1996-1998, 2008), Vocals (1991-2016), Bass (1992-2016)
Art Taylor - Guitars (2009-2010, 2012-2016)
Shaun Cothron - Guitars (2011-2012, 2014-2016)
Brandon Howe - Drums (2014-2016)
David Smith - Bass (1988-1991)
James Strauss - Drums (1988-1992)
Peter H. Gilmore - Keyboards (1988-1989)
Michael Smith - Vocals (1988-1990)
Ron Hogue - Drums (1989)
Belial Koblak - Guitars (1989-1991)
Robert Orr - Drums (1991)
Pete Slate - Guitars (1991-1992)
Michael Browning - Drums (1992-1994)
Tony Blakk - Guitars (1992-1994)
Trebor Ladres - Guitars (1994-1995)
Joe Oliver - Drums (1995)
Troy Heffern - Bass (1996)
Richard Christy - Drums (1996)
Michael Estes - Guitars (1996-1999, 2001-2004)
John Scott - Keyboards (1996-1999)
Jonathan Lee - Drums (1998-1999)
Tony Laureano - Drums (1998)
Bryan Hipp - Guitars (1998) (R.I.P. 2006)
Ben Meyer - Guitars (1998)
Adina Blase - Keyboards (1998-1999)
Bill Taylor - Guitars (1999)
Daniel Zink - Drums (2001)
Aaron Werner - Keyboards (2001-2005)
Kyle Severn - Drums (2002-2014)
Rhiannon Wisniewski - Vocals (2002)
Max Otworth - Guitars (2006-2012)
Ash Thomas - Guitars (2008-2009)
Scott Pletcher - Drums (2010)
Eric Stewart - Guitars (2010)