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Samain History

Sámain began life in the Summer of 1993, rising from the ashes of Hately and Bell’s previous band
Nazgul. With the change of name and recruitment of a new drummer Liam Stone, Sámain spent most of
1994 burning old Nazgul material and writing new songs for what would form the basis for the An
Leanábh Naomh (Bríste) demo. The Holy Child (Broken) was first attempted in Winter 1994,
comprising two tracks and two instrumentals, but was spoilt by poor engineering and old analogue
equipment which did not allow for the band to achieve the desired sound. In Spring 1994 Sámain
enlisted a well-respected Australian engineer and musician named Alan Smith, who provided the needed
skills and facilities to record the An Leanábh Náomh (Bríste) in its entirety: four songs and two
instrumentals. 
     The finished demo was very well received locally and internationally, securing the promise of several
overseas distributors. Regrettably, time and finances meant that the demo was released in only 150
copies. The reason behind this was the record contract Sámain accepted from Melbourne-based
Bloodless Creations, then known as Nightmare Records -- the diseased brainchild of Abyssic Hate’s
Shane Rout. Much of 1995 was spent writing new songs (several of which had been complete by the
time of the release of An Leanábh Náomh (Briste)).
     In hindsight, the decision to accept Shane Rout’s recording contract offer was extremely ill-advised, and
would eventually contribute to the band’s downfall. Wrangling and incompetence bungled Bloodless
Creation’s release of the Sámain album with distributor Modern Invasion Music, delaying the CD for a
full year. Added to this, the label did not come through with the promotional efforts it had promised. As
well, the inclusion in the jacket of a quote from Marx’s The Communist Manifesto, despite being noted
as “intentionally out of context,” so biased Modern Invasion Music’s notoriously petulant management
that all promotional resources were put instead into the debut of Norway’s Dismal Euphony rather than
an Australian debut. Although sales would later be in the several thousand range, the band has never
seen a single dollar from the release of their debut CD. To this day, Shane Rout avoids all contacts from
Sámain management seeking compensation. MIM continue to sell the remaining albums from the last
pressing. 
     Perhaps worst of all, by accepting (the accurately named) Bloodless Creations’ contract, Sámain failed
to promote or mass produce their debut demo, The Holy Child {Broken}. Needing to finance the
recording of the CD themselves, Sámain channelled all their funds and energy into preparing the way for
the Indomitus album. The fact of the matter is that Sámain do not consider that they were ready to
produce an album at that stage in their relative infancy. However, not knowing any better and naturally
enough, they jumped at the opportunity to do so regardless, and in the process denied themselves the
apprenticeship period that long-lasting bands generally benefit from undertaking: promoting small
recordings to small audiences and, in so doing, learning the small lessons that prepare bands for long
international recording careers. (On a wider note, this phenomena was ripe in Europe all throughout the
Black Metal Years. As bad as the bandwagon jumping of many bands was, worse was the bandwagon
jumping of the various new and established labels who, in exploiting easily seduced new bands, made for
the eventual saturation and subsequent exhaustion of the market with low quality black metal releases,
guaranteeing the demise of the “trend” just as in the Death Metal and Grind-Core years before it.)
     The CD Indomitus was “recorded in 55 hours in September 1995,” however this occurred in one day
with an extra evening for vocals and acoustic guitar overlays, and one full day for mixing. Despite the
incredibly tight schedule, the finished product has received excellent reviews worldwide in numerous
fanzines and magazines. The band themselves are still fairly satisfied with the outcome of the album,
though regretting the financial circumstances that required they do so much work in such short time.
Indomitus consists of ten tracks, adding up to “an hour-long conflict of battle-pitch rage, alienation and
age-old Gaelic sorcery,” the metaphor for Sámain ’s brand of progressive Celtic metal.
     In September 1996 the CD was finally released after a year’s delay, and the band’s anger and frustration
at their situation was lessened somewhat by the praise and excellent reviews their new release garnered.
Ever a slow moving beast, 1997 was the year in which the album’s impetus took flight. At the same
time, Sámain performed three live shows with their third drummer Andrew Cantwell. This drummer was
fired not long after the live shows were completed successfully. 
     By Autumn 1995 Sámain secured the services of veteran Perth metaller Mark Boeyen (also of
Syntony) to rejuvinate the Sámain roster. Since the release of Indomitus the band prepared another
album’s worth of material, and since Boeyen joined the band some of this material was prepared for
recording and live performance. The new drummer’s technical precision allowed for a greater range of
experimentation and a greater depth of intensity than before. Consequently, the new Sámain material
offered on The Revenge of the Natural “fused massive, blackened and grinding constructions
incorporating elder folk and progressive metal influences at the same time, powered by the forces of
birth, death and beyond.” After the release of the promotional cassette and a slew of excellent live
shows, Sámain went on hiatus for a brief period while Boeyen concentrated on his solo project Syntony
and Hately pursued his university studies. 
     At the start of 1999, Hately informed the other members that he was disbanding the project. He felt
that it was inappropriate to continue trying to capture his vision of Celtic folk music fused with
hyper-black metal without incorporating some traditional instruments and non-metal musicians, which
simply was not possible with the current line-up. Hately’s retirement from the band was also largely due
to disillusionment with what he saw as the seasonal, transitory and juvenile nature of the average metal
audience. 
Sámain were:
	
	Nick Bell: Electric Guitars and Leads.
	Warren Hately: Bass, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals.
	Mark Boeyen: Drums.
Sámain discography:
	An Leanabh Naomh (briste) promo 1994
	An Leanabh Naomh (briste) demo 1994
	Indomitus album 1996
	Revenge of the Natural promo 1997


Latest News (2001)

Recently Hately and Boeyen have worked together on the debut EP The Madman (based on the writings of the same name by Nietzsche) for the progressive doom band Daybreak. Hately also continues to work on several projects of his own (Fatalist, Harvester), grappling with the difficulties of trying to be satisfied by one's own skills, imagination and talent. Outside of music, Hately is mid-way through his PhD in Philosophy (expecting to complete early 2003). He and his partner Ali are expecting their first child in March, 2002.

Latest News (2003)

Hately has nearly finished his PhD dissertation and is looking forward to throwing himself into music and writing projects as well as finding continued work in his field. Teaching and family commitments and the PhD have stifled most free time thus far. Eve Skye Hately is now a year old (as of March 2003). Daybreak and Samain MP3s have been made available on the Net.

Contact can occur through the following e-mail address:

wereviking@hotmail.com