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Biography

Bartsch and Matton, both previously with the group DARK TEMPEST, formed BETHLEHEM in order to pursue a more Death Metal direction in late 1991 than the way they had been travelling in their previous act. The pair both brought a unique set of experiences to bear on shaping BETHLEHEM's particular brand of melanchlia as both had suffered from eerily alike suicides of family members with Bartsch's girlfriend and aunt hanging themselves and Matton's father doing likewise.

From their inception the authorities were intent on making life difficult for the band with gigs banned in Germany. Such was the persecution record label Adipocere even took the step of censoring references to the devil from BETHLEHEM lyric sheets. After several line-up changes the group released the debut 'Dark Metal' album, although the second album ('Dictius Te Necare'; translation: 'Kill You') is far more notorious with sick German lyrics.

Classen (as 'Andras'), in spite of press reports claiming he was dead, would in fact found PARAGON BELIAL for the 'Hordes Of The Dark' album and later reunite with BETHLEHEM drummer Rolf to forge DARK CREATION. He would also surface as guest lead vocalist for Swedish 'suicidal' Black Metal band SHINING on their 'Within Deep Dark Chambers' album.

PAVOR bass player Rainer Landfermann performs vocals on the second BETHLEHEM record although would be supplanted by Marco Kehran of DEINONYCHUS along with female vocals from Catharin Campen.

BETHLEHEM veered off on an industrial Metal tangent for 2001's 'Schatten Aus Der Alexander Welt'. For this opus Bartsch assembled a totally revised line up of AARDVARKS vocalist Guido Meyer De Voltaire, guitarist Eckhardt, keyboard player and sampler Reiner Tiedemann and drummer Stefan Wolz, the latter from Death Metal combo A-RISE. The same year the band issued a split 7" single with Portland, Oregon act WRAITHEN on the 11:11 Kult Productions label.

Amortout Productions issued alimited edition 7" single 'Alles Tot' in 2004, this comprising previously unreleased tracks.

Stefan Wolz joined the Helena Iren Michaelsen fronted IMPERIA in June of 2004. He would follow Michaelsen into her new project, ANGEL, the following year.

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