Vancouver has brought together one of the most promising power metal bands in a long time. Unleash the Archers is a joy to the ears of anyone who appreciates over the top technical rock with powerful vocals that will blow you away.
Formed in 2007 by close friends Brittney Slayes, Scott Buchanan and Zahk Hedstrom, Unleash the Archers considers themselves to be a Canadian power metal band. They have gone through a few lineup changes over the last 8 years, with Slayes always on vocals and Buchanan on drums. Grant Truesdell of Golgothca joined them in 2001 to take over guitar and in 2014 Kyle Sheppard came on as a bass player while Andrew Saunders (also formerly with Golgotcha) took over second guitar and vocals. Having a female as the front person has only strengthened their force in the Canadian music scene.
The music is heavily based on mythological images, legends and battle scenes. Many think the name is derived from a love for the sport of archery, but the truth is there is not a member who can hold a recurve bow or shoot one arrow. The bands name came from thin air, but the allusion towards the dark days of battles fought with recurve bows and arrows made the name stick. (They would likely be using these bad ass arrows if they were the fighters.)
They have released four separate tracks since hitting the heavy metal scene including a demo in 2009. This was followed by Behold the Devastation, which was a big hit for them, followed by the lesser received Demons of the AstroWaste in 2011. They came back with an EP in 2012 titled Defy the Skies, but have focused their attention on a live presence since then.
To see them play live is a shock to the senses. While this is hard core, in your face heavy metal, it is as melodic as Judas Priest, one of Brittney’s biggest influences. There is as much attention paid to the lyrics as there are the rifts and beats, making them one of those metal bands that make you think, instead of just bang your head.
Often compared to 3 Inches of Blood, Unleash the Archers sound is a bit more like Canada’s Into Eternity, who also create melodic riffs to complement their death metal style. This is a hard act to keep up, but Unleash the Archers has been at it for 8 years, and by the size of their fan base it would seem that they are unstoppable.
Make sure that when you have the chance you check out Unleash the Archers at one of their live shows. This is a rock solid rock band who have the potential to become just as powerful in the industry as the legends they worship.