In the latest issue of Metal Hammer, we head to southern Africa to meet the Botswana Queens, a group of female metalheads sticking two fingers up to the prejudices of society by supporting the music they love. Trust us, nothing will stop them throwing the horns.
But what bands in Botswana should we be checking out? Here are five of the best.
Quite possibly Botswana’s most brutal death metal band, they exhibit a firm allegiance to that pummelling old-school 90s sound, complete with murderous grooves. Their reverence for classics like Death, Deicide and Morbid Angel is readily apparent in their aggressive forays. Based in Ghanzi, Overthrust released their debut LP, Desecrated Deeds To Decease, in 2015.
One of Botswana’s best-known metal bands, we shouted about Wrust in Metal Hammer 293 as part of our Africa scene report. This Gaborone death metal quartet come tinged with hardcore and Sepultura-style groove, citing Machine Head, Carcass and Obituary as major influences. Their 2013 full-length, Intellectual Metamorphosis, questions systems of societal control.
Amok’s 2010 Marocko EP actually helped give the Botswana metal scene its name, and showcased a moody sensibility with some truly tasty guitar work and emotional vocals. Their major influences – Iron Maiden, Whitesnake, Europe – strongly manifest in their soaring hard rock opuses, and the Batswana metal warriors are currently working on new material.
Another long-running Gaborone outfit with roots in traditional metal and a flair for the progressive. Skinflint seek to combine elements from traditional African culture with heavy metal, using their riffs as a conduit to pay homage to ancestral beliefs. Their latest record, Chief Of The Ghosts, came out in 2016, and they recently supported Tarja Turunen in Europe.
Alive N Bolder
A Gaborone-based ‘gospel rock’ band whose stated mission is to spread words of inspiration and love, they favour slower, more introspective tempos and clean vocals. Alive N Bolder take a more melodic approach than most of the other bands in the Marocko scene, but their religious message clearly strikes a chord.
In the new issue of Metal Hammer, we meet the Botswana Queens – female metal fans resisting societal prejudice to rep the music they love. Buy it directly here or become a TeamRock+ member to read it right now.