Metal History Through Fanzines

Phantasm (US)

FYAFT #3 (Switzerland) 1992

FYAFT #3 (Switzerland) 1992. Editors: “Patrick Koch” and “Cedric Muller”

Short for “find yourself a fucking title,” this Swiss zine was nicely balanced with interviews and  a TON of reviews. Features a diverse lineup, including Dark Millennium, Obsequies, Abraxas, Alchemist, Salem, Mindrot, My Dying Bride, Solitude (Delaware), Konhkra, Metalmania ARP (Italian label), Sentenced, Crucifer, War Spasm, Rest In Piece, Messiah, Interval, Phlegethon, Rot, Exoto, Nothingness, Unbounded Terror, Mas Optica, Possessed, Anesthesia, Fester, Overman, Masacre, Lubricant, Genocide, Phantasm, Excidium, Blood Covered, Heavens Gate, Dark Reality and more…thanks to STEFAN for the contribution.

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Isten #5 (Finland) 1990

Isten #5 (Finland) 1990. Editors: “Mikko Mattila” and “Luxi Lahtinen”

Fantastic, long-running zine from Finland (in English) that is one of the few to achieve truly ‘cult’ status – and on that note, they are apparently constructing a retrospective book (!) that is currently closing in on 800 pages. Stay tuned- (Their F-book page is here for updates). This is issue #5 from Mikko and Luxi, just an amazing example of DIY publishing from the golden era of death metal. Thanks to Vladimir P. for sending it over. This MASSIVE 93+ page issue features interviews and features with/on Acheron, Afflicted, Asphyx, Vacant Grave, Baphomet, Devastation, Darkthrone, deadhorse, Deceased, Disgrace, Disharmonic Orchestra, Entombed, Exit-13, Funebre, Gorefest, Impetigo, Invocator, Maple Cross, Metalion (Slayer Mag), Morgoth, Order From Chaos, Paradise Lost, Phantasm, Phlegethon, Seraphic Decay Records, Sigh, Therion, Vital Remains, Xysma, reviews and many more.


Thy Kingdom Come #5 (Lithuania) Winter 1992/1993

Thy Kingdom Come #5  (Lithuania) Winter 1992/1993. Editors: “Arunas Norvaisa” and “Saulius Krusna”

Very underground selection of second wave death metal and others from the Baltic land of Lithuania, some diamonds in the rough here…interesting note I guess he did not have the letter “W” on his typewriter so it was “VV” as the next best option…includes interviews with Peaceville Records, Suhrim, Damonacy, Mortal Decay, Nightfall, Pyrexia, Phantasm, Demise, Selefice, Nocturnal Rites, Toxic Narcotic, Temperance, and much more.


Sinistrari Zine #1 (USA), 1992

Sinistrari Zine #1 (USA), 1993. Editor: ZAID

I picked this zine up somewhere around 1992/93, and it quickly became a favorite. Well written, in multiple languages (in some interviews), with well thought-out questions revealing an international vibe that reflected the multi-national unity of the nascent death/black underground. First issue, top notch-not sure if he put any more out. It’s from my home town area of Washington DC, although I can not remember how I got it. There was no editorial, but after some research, it seems it was published by Gelal of the band GRAND BELIAL’s KEY. Anyways, great interviews from a crucial period when there actually was a real ‘scene.’