AKHETH is an international progressive symphonic metal band from Canada, United States, Mexico, and The Netherlands.
The creation of AKHETH dates back to 2015 when songwriter Roberto Sunga and model, belly dancer and singer Foroogh Atash (Mahafsoun) first recorded a demo for the song The Asylum. It was the great result of this demo that lead Roberto to fund AKHETH in late 2016. After experimenting with several names for the band, he chose the title of the very first song he wrote in 2006 for the band's name.
The band's original plan was to release The Asylum single in September 2016 but a series of amazing events and collaborations delayed the release to 2018, turning it into something much bigger than what the band had initially planned.
After Roberto finished producing the guitars, grunts, bass and orchestrations in his hometown Juarez, Mexico, he contacted Jeroen Simons who was EPICA's drummer from 2002 to 2006. He toured the world with EPICA and recorded their first two classic albums; The Phantom Agony and Consign to Oblivion. Jeroen had been staying away from the symphonic metal world for around 10 years, working as a session drummer in various music styles. The aggressive metal nature of The Asylum caused him to be reluctant to record the song at first, but after a few days he decided it was time to play metal again.
By January 2017 Jeroen had finished recording the drum as well as percussion tracks for the single in Goes, The Netherlands. At this time he was also inspired to use his expertise and take on the role of co-producer along with Roberto to take the song to the next level, helping with vocal production, song structure, and mixing advise.
It was now time for Foroogh Atash to record the lead vocals for the song. The only singing experience she had in the past was doing covers for her youtube channel. She also recorded a spoken passage in her mother tongue Farsi for the song Medusalem, from Moonspell's Extinct album. Having little experience she took on the challenge to record the vocals by herself in her own apartment in Vancouver B.C. Canada.
With the recording sessions being over, Brett Caldas-Lima from Tower Studio in Montpellier, France who had previously worked with artists such as Ayreon, Devin Townsend, and Adagio, took on the mission to mix and master The Asylum single. After some revisions by Jeroen and Roberto, the final mix was ready by April 2017.
AKHETH wanted to have strong visuals to go along with the music. At first they started working with visual artist and lead vocalist of Septicflesh Seth Siro Anton. But after many months it became apparent that it was a bad time for Seth to create the artwork for AKHETH since he was working on the release and tour for his band's latest album Codex Omega. The band and Seth decided that it was best to work together for another release when the times were better for both.
During the down time, Roberto asked Mark Jansen from EPICA if he'd be interested in recording guest grunts for The Asylum single. After giving the song a few listens Mark agreed to do it and recorded his vocals during July in his home studio in Sicily, Italy.
Travis Smith one of Roberto's favorite artists who had previously created cover art for Opeth, Cradle of Filth, Eluveitie, Devin Townsend and many more, was asked to create the cover artwork for The Asylum Single. By September the band finally had the amazing artwork they had been waiting for with photography by Foroogh Atash and art direction by Roberto Sunga.
It was also during this time that the amazing pianist, model and photographer Lillian Liu became AKHETH's official third member. She wrote piano parts over the existing song and recorded them at Monarch Studios in Vancouver during October.
After Brett Caldas-Lima added Lillian's piano and Mark's vocals to the song, the ultimate version of The Asylum, was finally ready to be unleashed.