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Review: Non Serviam: The Official Story of Rotting Christ
Book Review
Non Serviam: The Official Story of Rotting Christ
Publisher: Cult Never Dies
Author: Sakis Tolis and Dayal Patterson
Year published: 2018
Pages: 300

Rating: 4.5/5

Review online: December 30, 2022
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Readers Rating
Non Serviam: The Official Story of Rotting Christ

Rated 4.5/5 (90%) (4 Votes)

Rotting Christ is probably the most famous black metal band from Greece, so it's no surprise that someone would see it fit to recount the band's long career. Oftentimes, official biographies leave you with a taste that the band held back, leaving out the juicy or controversial stuff, but that's not the case here. Present and past members are interviewed and recount the good and the bad of their experiences in the band. Whether some stuff was left out is hard to say, but it's not as rosy or safe as, for example, a Judas Priest bio might sound (see my review of the first JP bio by Martin Popoff). This book covers the very early days all to 2018 or so, and it's interesting to see how the band changed over time, but also how some things remained the same. Mainman (and co-author) Sakis Tolis is omnipresent in the book, not surprising considering how many times the band is cited as a "one-man band" due to the changes of lineup and, above all, how Rotting Christ represents his vision (though I didn't come out feeling that he had a dictatorial grasp on the band). Several past and present members are interviewed, as well as many members of bands Rotting Christ toured with over the years. While there's a lot of authored content, this book is very heavy on the interview part and I found that makes it a very lively read. It doesn't matter whether you're into Rotting Christ or not, this book is just a damn good biography about a metal band that pioneered a genre and paid its dues. Quite simply, this is page-turner stuff.

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