African Death from North to South: Scarab, In Oath and The Overmind

African MaskIt may surprise more than a few of you good people to learn how many African countries boast top-quality metal bands. Limiting ourselves to just one genre, the ever-popular death metal, let’s take a short journey from the northern end to the southernmost country of my home continent, with a halfway stop for lunch in equatorial Africa.

Thus our itinerary is mid-morning tea in Egypt, a lunchtime barbecue in Kenya and an afternoon beer or six in South Africa. At these events we’ll say hello to truly world-class bands. I’m not going to say much about each band. Let them tell us who and what they are.


Scarab – Egypt

Formed in Cairo in 2006 of a combination of different musical tastes and personalities, Scarab stand as a united musical entity. Their music emanates from fierce, deep and complicated feelings, thoughts and experiences. They express their passion and emotions through new and fresh progressions that match their identity and capture the soul and heart of the band.

They strive to create music that is melodically memorable and takes the listener on a narrative journey. The lyrical themes are mainly about spirituality, theories and philosophies and how they influence the way people perceive the world around them while they struggle to survive and deal with the chaos of human nature.

Scarab have finished recording an album, “Serpents of the Nile”, for release in March 2015 through Vicisolum Productions.

Learn more about Scarab on their Facebook page.


In Oath – Kenya

Another journeyman band who’ve paid their dues, In Oath’s formation in 2009 was influenced strongly by metalcore. From the experience gained in live performances, gaining subsequent popularity and sampling other types of music, the band set out on a quest to improve their skill, sound and delivery. This gave birth to their first EP,  “Eulogy”, which was offered as a free digital download on various social music sites on April 27, 2012. A remastered version was later released on Bandcamp.

In Oath are currently working on a death metal album. No release date has been set yet, but they say the album will be a step up towards more opportunities and maturity in their music.

Follow In Oath’s progress on Facebook.


The Overmind – South Africa

The band itself is new but its members are seasoned campaigners who were members of other bands in the city of Durban, the largest city in my province and just a couple of hours down the road from my rural hermitage in Zululand.

The Overmind makes the most of the considerably varying influences brought together by the members. They’ve worked to create a unique sound which is both brutal and intricate, yet imbued with enough melody and drive to appeal to even the most critical of extreme metal fans.

The name for the band was adapted from popular science-fiction game lore. This in turn inspired the lyrical concept behind their forthcoming EP, “Dissolution”, which tells the story of a terraforming operation on an unknown planet and the consequences of humanity’s arrogance. The EP is set for release this month.

Follow the creations and imaginings of The Overmind on Facebook.


Posted on January 21, 2015, in Exploring New Things and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Great preview. There’s loads more African metal bands that need worldwide exposure and any light you throw their way is appreciated by those of us supporting the scene the best way we can. Keep on!

  2. Nice Post ! African Death ! \m/

  1. Pingback: MOST ANTICIPATED EVENTS IN THE KENYAN ROCK SCENE 2015 | Heavy and the Beast

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