emacretia formed in the Johannesburg suburbs in 1994 with Brett Morgan (guitar), Derek Numan (bass/vocals), Colin De Klerk (guitar) and Graham Williams (drums). They started their life-playing clubs in Gauteng, South Africa. Numan would soon leave for the band Metalmorphisis, with Michael Mitchell (bass) and Ryan Thompson (vocals) replacing him. But this line-up, too, would not last long as Mitchell would be killed in a car accident, and Thompson would leave for personal reasons.
The roots of the classic line-up of Demacretia stem back to 1989 when Jamie Haigh (vocals) and Lee Darby (guitar) met in school and decided to start a band with another friend Chris Gerhard (guitar), with Chris Thomas (bass) joining in shortly after. They formed a death band called Bludgeon. During their formative infant years, they went through many drummers, most lasting no more than a month. As a result of this instability their first attempt at forming a band failed.
Around this time Brett Morgan was looking for new members to join his band Demacretia; specifically a new vocalist and bassist is what he was shopping for, as the previous members had recently died and departed respectively. So Jamie Haigh and Chris Thomas joined on after meeting Morgan at an Iron Maiden concert in Johannesburg in 1994. Only 4 months in, drummer Graham Williams and guitarist Colin De Klerk left. Lee Darby returned. During a gig at the King's Arms pub they met Gregg Schaeper (drums), but Schaeper's career with them was short when he soon moved away. Now thoroughly tired with constantly loosing drummers the roll of drummer was eliminated by technology with an 80486 computer and a Roland S-550 sampler filling in the now robotic drum stool. It was this line-up that worked, for in October of 1997 their 4-track demo CD, Ebola, was released; Formula For Fear would follow a year later. Both releases demonstrated Demacretia's unique mixture of tribal beats and death metal, forming a sort of electro-death metal sound.
In July of 1998 Jamie Haigh contacted Derek McDonald, owner and operator of 'Emperor Multimedia', after Oliver Schoenknecht of Nightshade magazine in Germany E-mailed Haigh about getting their music published on the debut release by this obscure Canadian start-up record company. Haigh submitted a copy of their Ebola release for consideration. McDonald, who never heard anything quite like this before, loved the CD and raved about it on the Rock Record Collectors Association (RRCA) website 'Record Review' section, he then immediately informed Demacretia that he'd be pleased to feature them on his CD. This action was repeated when their second release was made available, and again it was a hit with McDonald and company. And so their first professional exposure came. A year later Demacretia would record their first full length, Corehammer, on their own 'Mental Echo Records' label. The CD contained remixes of selected tracks from the first two demos, as well as some new tracks. McDonald and company also accepted the disc for distribution on their 'Diskery' subsidiary.
In 2001 Demacretia would further advance their sound with the inclusion of drummer Etienne Kruger, who used to play for the once infamous South African thrash/death band Metalmorphosis. His presence added a heavier feel to the music, which was heard on their second full-length release Burning Away a year and a half later.
Footnote: The RRCA and Diskery would merge to later become this website: diskery.com. Also: Haigh would be the artist contracted by McDonald to create the cover art of the first two compilation releases by 'Emperor Multimedia'. The famous 'Skel' mascot and logo used by 'Emperor Multimedia' and other projects fronted by McDonald was created by Haigh from a photograph of McDonald in costume for a Halloween party in 1995. The chainmail, longhaired, spiked collar wearing skeleton creature would later be updated by SOTW member Barry Waddell for the Polishing of Metal CD, the last CD to be published by 'Emperor Multimedia'. McDonald still owns and uses the 'Skel' image, many people in the industry (or just plain streets) call him by this name to this day.