Jennifer Dann of New Zealand's Stuff.co.nz has issued the following report:
A tattooed skinhead south Auckland policeman is the frontman for a satanic death metal band which calls for the "eradication of the weak and inferior".
New Zealand Police Minister Annette King plans to ask the police commissioner for a report on Constable Rigel Walshe (photo) after receiving inquiries from the Sunday Star-Times. Walshe works as a court escort in the Counties Manukau police district.
The district was the subject of an inquiry into a "sick" police culture after the conviction in February of Senior Sergeant Anthony Solomona for assaulting a 17-year-old boy he photographed wearing a humiliating sign.
Walshe is the lead singer and bass player of extreme metal outfit DAWN OF AZAZEL (web site), which has an ultra-violent militarist image, featuring satanic symbols and lyrics.
Walshe and a bandmate brandish a beer bottle and baseball bat in a publicity photo posed in a pub setting.
Walshe told the Star-Times he'd been warned by his superiors not to discuss his job with the media.
The district's professional standards manager, Inspector Keith Brady, said police knew of Walshe's band membership, but refused to comment on whether it was appropriate.
"It involves a police member's personal life, and I'm not prepared to discuss that in the media. There has been no specific investigation in respect of his involvement in that band."
The band often headlines New Zealand metal gigs and is touring its second album "Sedition" with performances in New Plymouth and Palmerston North this weekend.
The album's song list includes titles such as "Villany Endures" (sic) and "Violence and Uncleanliness".
The opening track "Spare None" contains references to "the embrace of sin", being "smitten with deeds of deviance", succumbing to "perversion and intercourse", and the enduring nature of "lechery and lust".
The band website quotes Walshe as saying: "I just wanted to create lyrics that accompany the feeling of the music, total unrestrained violence, but intelligent and thought out. I'm most fucked off at people that are afraid to confront their fears, who waste their potential and just follow like sheep, basically the weak and fucking mediocre that infest our world."
He is quoted as telling Depth Charge magazine the band's militant stage presence, including uniforms, banners and gasmasks "represent a conviction that is a fight to the death against the inferior elements of humanity".
"There is nothing to be gained from a subtle approach to eradication of the weak".
The Metal Mania website says the band's performance at Riverhead in 2000 "climaxed in a 300+ person riot, the ensuing chaos leaving several injured and hospitalised".
National Party police spokesman Simon Power said police hierarchy needed to be satisfied the officer's extra-curricular activities did not bring the police into disrepute.
"The police are really always on duty and have an obligation to be role models," he said.
For a full DAWN OF AZAZEL biography and discography, visit Rockdetector.com.