Canadian Metal

Wacken Metal Battle Canada 2014

Wacken Metal Battle Canada: Canucks winning their way to an international stage

Interview by Laura Wiebe

If you’re a metalhead you’ve heard of Wacken Open Air. Founded in 1990, the German festival is a mecca for metal pilgrims, a status immortalized in Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen’s Metal: A Headbanger’s Journey (2005). But Wacken is a desired destination for more than fans. For a band, playing Wacken must be a tremendous high – a chance to reach out directly to some of the scene’s largest crowds, gathered together from some of its farthest reaches.

Relatively few Canadian bands have had the chance to storm a Wacken stage. So far…

The Night Watch – s/t

Hellbound Metal: “The Night Watch have released a challenging debut, one which initially did not work for me. Though not all the tracks stand out, it’s with repeated listens that it becomes apparent to me that the album is an exciting piece of avant-garde metal/post-rock/insert label here.”

Dark Forest: Land of the Evening Star

“Sometimes album art can be misleading, but visual imagery is to some extent genre specific, so there’s usually a pretty good chance I can judge by an album cover if a band’s style is likely to be my kind of thing. Such was the case with Dark Forest’s Land of the Evening Star. What I can’t always predict is how good the music is going to be, but with Dark Forest’s third “Vinlandic pagan black metal” release, the tracks inside are not just well represented by the gloomy mountain and forest scene on the cover. They’re also very good. As impressed as I was with the recording I wanted to learn more about the band, so I went straight to the source.”

Interview by Laura Wiebe

Thérèse Lanz of Mares of Thrace: The Hellbound Audio interview

I had the opportunity to chat with Thérèse Lanz about Mexican food, video games, being interviewed, stupid questions she is asked, Chicago (and what to eat late night), U.S. Politics and a little bit about music a few weeks prior to the release of The Pilgrimage (Sonic Unyon Metal) and the cross Canada tour that will probably be bringing Mares of Thrace close to your town. Regardless of how many times you speak to Thérèse, she is always entertaining and has a lot of very informed things to say on pretty much any topic. But mostly on tacos and video games…

Interview by Jason Wellwood.