Sinister got its start in 1989 when death metal was just starting to gain momentum around the world as a movement. Signing to Nuclear Blast in 1991, they would go on to release five albums between that time and 1998, when they left the label. Moving to Hammerheart Records the next year, they found a new singer in Rachel Heyzer, making them one of the only death metal bands with a female vocalist. Their first album with her, 2001's Creative Killings, was their sixth altogether. The band broke up in 2004, but reconstituted itself a year later with original members Adrie Kloosterwaard (previously drums, then vocals) and Alex Paul (previously bass, then guitar) along with new members Bas van den Bogaard on bass and Edwin van den Eeden on drums. In 2006 the band released Afterburner, the first in a string of punishing full-length outings that included Legacy of Ashes (2010), The Carnage Ending (2012), Dark Memorials (2015), and Syncretism (2017).