Immaculate – “Cross of Nero”

Day 5 of 6(66) Days of Nero. The Swedish speed/thrash metal band Immaculate open their 2010 album Atheist Crusade with this track, which combines much of the events of Nero’s reign we’ve seen previously treated by metal bands: matricide, depraved tyranny, arson, and anti-Christian persecution. The phrase “Cross of Nero” itself may refer either to […]

Messiah – “Nero”

Day 4 of 6(66) Days of Nero. Today we’re revisiting a post from this past winter, when the latest polar vortex seized the Midwestern US in a deadly, icy grip. A song about Nero’s Great Fire on an album titled “Extreme Cold Weather” surely embraces the spirit of FROST AND FIRE. (From the archives)As the […]

Hirax – “The World Will Burn”

Day 2 of 6(66) Days of Nero. The California thrash metal band Hirax close out their 2014 album Immortal Legacy by duly extending the immortality of the infamous emperor’s legacy. Once more, we see the Great Fire of 64 CE and the original anti-Christian persecution taken up as a lyrical theme (see yesterday’s post on […]

Sacred Oath – “The Ferryman’s Lair”

One of the more familiar elements of the Greco-Roman Underworld is Charon, the haggard boatman who ferries souls across the River Styx to their eternal destination, for a fee of course. Those without payment, or who have not been properly given funeral rites and burial, are doomed to linger on the near shore for a […]

Remoria – “Marcus Licinius Crassus”

The politician, general, and real estate mogul Marcus Licinius Crassus was one of the major players in Roman history in the turbulent first century BCE. He became the richest man in Rome through ruthless business tactics, including the strategy of having a private fire brigade that would put out fires provided that the building’s owner […]

Lair of the Minotaur – “The Wolf”

The Roman poet Ovid is well known for his poetry on erotic themes, including a handbook on how to seduce women that likely got him exiled by the emperor Augustus. However, he is more or less equally famous for his 15-volume epic poem Metamorphoses, a loosely connected anthology of myths from the creation of the […]

Sentinel Beast – “Sentinel Beast”

The mythic imagination of the ancient Greeks populated the Underworld with a host of terrifying monsters, both in imprisonment and employment. Among the latter is the original hellhound Cerberus, who stands watch over the infernal gates lest any soul escape. It was the offspring of Echidna and Typhon, formidable monsters in their own right, and […]

Anthrax – “Medusa”

One of the most familiar “monsters” of Greek mythology is Medusa, the Gorgon condemned to have snakes for hair and turn every person she sees into stone, because Athena punished her for being raped by Poseidon in her temple. The hero Perseus later killed Medusa to use her head to petrify the sea monster and […]

Sodom – “City of God”

In the year 410 CE, less than a century before the Fall of the Roman Empire in the West, Rome was sacked by the Visigoths, the first time the Eternal City was taken by a foreign invader in over 800 years. Citizens throughout the Empire were completely shocked by the news, and tried to explain […]