The new record comes out just two years after Time Stands Still, and the Canadian heavy metal group have had a change of bassist between the two records, with Nikko Whitworth replacing Kyle Sheppard. They certainly don't add any kind of edge to the music. Sure they have their place but sometimes they can be overdone a bit in metal. Failure to adhere to these instructions will be considered as Plagiarism and you will be reported to the appropriate authorities. The band have got their own distinctive sound nailed down, which is a huge credit to them after having so many member changes over more recent years and Brittney Slayes is one of the strongest vocalists in the metal scene to date, the power in her voice is truly incredible and Apex is an excellent way to showcase her talent as a musician.
She especially excels during some of the epic choruses, which feel like they were written perfectly to showcase her skills, and for sure her voice is the one element that stands out the most on Apex. Technically speaking the band is in top form on Apex. Apex works both as a continuous journey and as a collection of individual masterpieces. This time around, though, the band relies on more epic and mystical atmospheres and go full-on power metal, almost completely abandoning the death-ish elements from their previous works. False Walls track 7 has a great melody and a rooftop guitar solo that manages to make 8 minutes feel like 3. For the most part, this album is heavy, guitar driven power metal, with only minor elements from other genres.
The skill of Unleash the Archers returns for one final epic in the title track. And, 'Awakening' isn't the only track that stretches the time: 'False Walls' and 'Apex' clock in at over eight minutes. Ten Thousand Against One 5:37 08. This girl not only has a set of pipes on her to rival the greats but she might just rip out your heart. It is however only testament to the album's strengths that it still ended up the best power metal album of 2015 to my ears. But before we get to that, we have a slow ominous feeling created during the first 45 seconds of the track before the music really begins. When an artist has a vocalist of this calibre and they play a genre that doesn't traditionally use growling, why it's nigh on a crime against good music.
It does have growls, though, and is a pretty nice track instrumentally, but that weak chorus sinks it. As far as melodic power metal goes Unleash the Archers provide more than enough edge to set them apart from the crowd within the boundaries of their actual genre by avoiding the whole 'cheesy keyboards' type of cliché that has long been the subject of many jokes and even outright scorn from metalheads of other genre persuasions. Yes, it took a few listens to 'get' the development of Unleash The Archers on 'Apex', but it is well worth the effort. Now in 2017, the band is celebrating their 10th anniversary with their fourth full-length release, Apex, an album which continues to push their sound forward towards a more pure power metal sound, while still containing small traces of their melodeath elements, as well as occasional elements of classic heavy metal. Definitely one of the highlights of the album. There has always been a 3 Inches of Blood vibe brimming just below the surface of Unleash the Archers but hearing the opening to this track instantly made me think fondly of the days when orcs were being destroyed and enemies of metal were living in fear.
There are plenty of cool toys a band can invest in that will make their drums more thunderous, their guitars thicker or their vocals more impactful. L 3 Inches of Blood Lost Horizon Helloween Ancient Bards. One track on the record that really highlights this point is The Matriarch. Metal music nowadays is full of ways to create the most massive and powerful sound imaginable. This new one is by no means a mere power metal album, and beyond any sub-genre definitions, it is quite simply a fantastic album that should impress metalheads of all tastes.
This type of uninhibited expression is what fuels this Unleash The Archers album, and listeners will be abel to recognize and appreciate it straightaway. Record Label: Napalm Release Date: June 2nd 2017 Track Listing: 01. It's such a common thing to happen now even in genres like power metal that I'm sure there are many listeners that don't even bat an eyelid to hearing growls in these genres and as Unleash the Archers actually started their career as more of a melodic death metal act perhaps it is to be expected that they wouldn't cast off their roots completely, but their presence in this band's music ended up bugging me more than most. After some line-up mixtures around 2013, the quintet returned fully formed and ready to melt faces with 2015's glorious Time Stands Still. Sure, many focus on Brittney Slayes vocal dynamism, and the guitars of Andrew Kingsley and Grant Truesdell and their guttural vocals, but the songs themselves on this release reach beyond the clichéd descriptions. Her voice is insane, ridiculously good.
The last two tracks are completely dominated by power metal elements. This time, the master is The Matriarch, a sorceress who has called The Immortal, and she has an especially odd task for him: he must find her sons and bring them to her so she can sacrifice them to attain her own immortality. This is a song dominated by guitar melodies, which no old-school heavy metal would have any complaints with. Unleash The Archers continue to grow with their cult fanbase, but here's hoping they can reach their sprawling tentacles into the far reaches of the world - heaven knows they deserve it. They started off in 2007 and were more of a melodic death metal band on their 2009 debut Behold the Devastation, with a more aggressive sound and with very prominent harsh vocals, while their second album Demons of the AstroWaste, released in 2011, showed them moving into a blend between melodeath and power metal, with clean vocals starting to become much more important. The song clocks in at just over 7 minutes and sounds like something that could have been on an early Helloween album had it been written in a different time and place — excepting of course the unclean supporting vocals from Grant Truesdell and Andrew Kingsley — Helloween never had that. Each song manages to both tell a part of the story and effectively communicate the emotions and storyline, while also maintaining a distinct flavor with each track.
The group has seen a line-up change since Time Stands Still with a bassist switch from Kyle Sheppard to Nikko Whitworth but otherwise the line-up of the previous album remains intact. Besides Slayes brilliant singing they have sometimes used extreme metal style vocals, in this case more like a black metal rasp than a death growl. Unleash the Archers is a band that proudly raises the flag of the modern approach on power metal, with lots of groove and even some death-like growls. Label: Napalm Personnel: Brittney Hayes lead vocals , Andrew Kingsley unclean vocals, guitars , Grant Truesdell unclean vocals, guitars , Scott Buchanan drums , Nikko Whitworth bass Canadian heavy metal group, Unleash the Archers, are kind of unique, and maybe a little more so than you may at first notice. They also feature something I love, an amazing lead female vocalist.
There are many highlights on display across the 100 minutes of 'Apex' with the unsung heroes of Scott Buchanan drums and Nikko Whitworth bass power the album along with intelligent rhythm work. While looking to modernize and making their work accessible, Unleash the Archers are taking large steps toward being in the main leagues and have delivered a good effort while doing so. Not that you could say there is a lot of intelligence in terms of lyrical content - daft tales, takes on a fantastical battles and ascension. The crushing drums of Scott Buchanan, the only other original member still in the band, set a breakneck pace. Apex is a concept album where each song is essentially a chapter in the story, which is itself about a supernatural, formidable being, The Immortal, who never dies but is cursed to sleep in the mountains and wake every so often — often his wakings are hundreds of years apart — to do the bidding of some master. Photo: Shimon Karmel Frontwoman Brittney Slayes has a voice that beats the competition by a mile and a half. Free me from the clutch of death incarnate.
The second part of the album, actually, is stacked with more opulent songs that manage to keep the blood pumping, in one way or another. Listening to it, I can hardly believe Unleash the Archers released their first 2 albums independently. She wipes the floor with the also-rans. Apex is truly something that I wanted to come back to, and already have multiple times. Their style is clear and well-defined, the vocals are crisp where they should be and harsher where it fits.