100 Years Ago: The First Day on the Somme (The Western Front – Sacriphyx)

A battle tried, forgotten, where great sorrow dwells…

The Western Front is the excellent debut album by Australian death metal band SACRIPHYX dealing with the Australian experience of WWI.

Related to the Battle of the Somme (which began 100 years today), Fatal Fromelles deals with the Battle of Fromelles and specifically the Australian Imperial Force.

Fromelles was a subsidiary attack intended to support the British Fourth Army under command of Sir Henry Rawlinson. The Fourth field army was the major British contribution to the Somme. On this day in 1916, the first day on the somme, they took 57,470 casualties of which 19,240 men died.

Fromelles itself was a disastrous feint intended to draw German defenses away from the Somme offensive (then in it’s 19th day). Over two days the 5th Australian Division suffered 5,533 casualties, rendering it incapable of offensive action for many months.