ZemialZemial are known as one of the first Hellenic Black/Death Metal bands to emerge from the late 1980's/early 1990's underground scene. They do not have the sound that most Hellenic bands are known for (initiated by Rotting Christ in 1993) as their influences are drawn from the darkness and depth of Bathory, Celtic Frost and Hellhammer.
1989/1990 - Embryonic stages, changing line-ups, first promo rehearsal and demo recordings, 3 live shows with bands such as Flames, Obsecration and Piranha.
1991 - Establishment of Zemial line-up with Vorskaath on guitars and vocals, Mentor (who later founded Kawir) on bass and Necrosauron (of Rotting Christ) on drums. The band rehearses the material for their first official release and circulates 2 promo cassettes which are received very well throughout the underground. Anticipation for the official recording has begun.
1992 - Zemial record their first official release "Sleeping Under Tartarus" at MOLON LAVE Studios in Athens (later called Storm Studios). Newfound French label Osmose Productions contacts Vorskaath for the release of the EP, however in line with the underground spirit of "music for the spirit not for money"; Vorskaath refuses to offer the Ep for unlimited pressing. The EP is released in the USA through Gothic Records/Torched Records to great acclaim. It is sold out immediately, making it one of the most popular releases of the newly developed Hellenic scene and making Zemial the first Hellenic Black Metal band with a record deal outside of Hellas. Osmose contacts Vorskaath yet again for an album but the offer is again refused. Finally Osmose contacts Gothmog of Thou Art Lord for a split Zemial/Thou Art Lord album, once again failing to arouse Zemial's interest.
1993 - Material for future albums "Nykta" and "For the Glory of UR" being composed. Magus Wampyr Daoloth of Necromantia joins the now one-man band on bass, however this line-up is short lived.
1994 - Archon Vorskaath and his brother Eskarth the Dark One (of Agatus) relocate to Australia. Vorskaath begins to re-establish Zemial in the distant Continent. "Sleeping Under Tartarus" is re-released through Gothic Records with a different layout, this time reaching world-wide distribution. The majority of distribution and sales are still in the USA. The release is sold out at through pre-orders.
1995 - "For the Glory of UR" album recorded in Australia. After the collapse of Gothic Records, negotiations commence with Daoloth's new label for the release of Zemial's debut album.
1996 - Hypervorea Records (now Black Lotus) and Sub-Terra Records release "For the Glory of UR" but fail to promote, distribute and circulate the album sufficiently and fail to meet their contractual obligations to Zemial. The contract is void and Zemial receive offers from other labels to licence the album.
1997 - The raw recording that came to be known as the music for "Necrolatry" was recorded and circulated widely as a demo, to great acclaim. Considered by many, the best work of Zemial and a great come-back of sorts… Earlier that year, Zemial had appeared on a Tribute to Bathory cd, with an unpolished version of Armageddon. The tribute circulated 16,000 copies, mainly in Europe. Around this period, the unofficial bootleg: "The True Black" appears, featuring Zemial, Thou Shalt Suffer and Mayhem. Toward the end of 1997, Zemial entered the studio and recorded 3 tracks for a 7" single that remains unreleased.
1998 - Zemial travel to Berlin/Germania, to record their next release: "Breath of the Pestilence", with famous Thrash Metal producer Harris Johns (Sodom, Kreator, Helloween). Due to technical problems, the recording remains unreleased.
1999 - Iron Pegasus Records (Germania) sign Zemial and re-release the "For the Glory of UR album, on cd (with bonus tracks and different artwork), picture LP and black vinyl. The debut album is finally distributed around Europe.
2000 - "Necrolatry" is released on limited vinyl format (picture disc and black vinyl) to a great response and sold out within two months of it's release.
2001 - Zemial embark on their first European tour with label mates Desaster from Germany. Their appearances incorporated elements never before known in the Black Metal genre, such as free improvisational parts and pianissimo ensemble playing.
2002 - Zemial prepare for their next European tour in summer of 2003 and begin negotiations for their 2 upcoming releases. Most of the time however is spent on other musical projects, such as Alpha Centauri and The Watcher.
2003 - Zemial enter the studio (The Vault) and record "Face of the Conqueror" and . The material is composed/improvised during the recording sessions, with no prior rehearsing. The band tour Europe once again to promote their new releases. "Face of the Conqueror" marks the last release of Zemial with Iron Pegasus Records.
2004 - The death of Quorthon (Bathory) on June 7, 2004, who had been the primary influence and inspiration on Vorskaath, prompted the composition of a new Zemial album that would be dedicated to the memory of Quorthon, for the enormous influence he had on Zemial.
2005 - Zemial begin rehearsals and enter the Vault studios again to record "In Monumentum"; their tribute to Thomas Forsberg (Quorthon).
2006 - "In Monumentum" is due to be released in March through Vorskaath's label and a 2006 European tour has been scheduled, centred mainly around Zemial's fatherland Hellas, but also including shows in Germany, The Netherlands, Belgium and other European countries.
The Darkness Continues...
Zemial @ MySpace