HistoryBelgium's best-known black/death metal act Ancient Rites was formed in 1988 by singer and bass player Gunther Theys although some members had a background extending into the early 80's. The band's first output was the Dark Ritual demo tape. With a healthy interest in Ancient cultures, monuments and history, Theys built Ancient Rites into a well-known underground entity flirting with Satan, history and mysticism. The rumours of violence at shows and supposed bomb threats were not exactly lessening the band's notoriety either. Between the two early guitarists Johan left the band for not agreeing with the Satanic direction and Philip was killed in a car accident. While the band began releasing music - at first on its own Fallen Angel Records - via singles, splits and many compilations, today's Ancient Rites, for the most part, is releasing proper albums. The band is known to list drummers on albums when in fact the only drumming on the album is of the 'machine' variety. The Dim Carcosa album featured a full-time keyboardist and landed the title Of the Album of The Month in Metal Hammer Israel. Danse Macabre is a Wave project. A planned European tour was cancelled in the spring of 2002. The band, however, did announce the recording of a live CD/DVD. Furthermore the Generation Armageddon tour featuring Dismember, Ancient Rites, Primordial, Impious, Septic Flesh and Blood Red Throne was also cancelled in late 2002. A live CD/DVD appeared in the summer of 2003. The band also played at Wacken, but not before seeing the departure of Jan Yrlund who was replaced by the band's earlier guitarist Bart Vandereycken. Belgium’s long running band signed to Season Of Mist in the autumn of 2005. The band entered Spacelab Studio and recorded an album called Rubicon. Guitarist Raf Jansen quit Ancient Rites after two years in the band in order to focus on his own band, Ahráyeph.