By Sarah Kitteringham
CALGARY — Bassist Stephanie Bell is sitting on the side of a gravel road in Northern Alberta, sandwiched somewhere between the Central Alberta towns of Whitecourt and Edson. She is talking on her cell phone and is frequently passed by massive, noisy farming trucks commandeered by teenage girls. This justifiably interrupts her train of thought. No matter: her husband and drummer Brent Bell has pulled the vehicle over because they finally have reception, as their trip to a friend’s cabin does not include nearby cellphone towers (though quading has been abundant). So there she is, discussing what’s up with their death metal band Kryosphere.
Formed in 2007, Krysophere hails from Edmonton. Throughout numerous lineup changes, they’ve released two EPs, 2011’s At Six Feet and April 2013’s SOL. After starting as a punk project, a mutual spark was ignited when the band’s drummer Brent (ex-Butcher’d, ex-Spawned by Rot) and his wife attended a Kataklysm concert alongside a former guitarist. It was the end of the beginning.
“It transformed into a metal project. I joined six years ago (in 2007), so basically, they had written a couple of songs. We went through a couple lineup changes, we’ve had definitely a problem with lineup changes, but the current one has been together for just about two years now,” Stephanie clarifies. To date, the band includes the Bells, along with 2012 additions Dave Waram (guitarist) and Davis Hay (vocals). The current lineup is their strongest to date, exemplified by their second EP. Comparatively, At Six Feet struggled a crisis of identity, featuring driving rhythms and gruff yet understandable sing then spoken vocals with tinges of metalcore. SOL is far more aggressive, displaying the band’s penchant and passion for Canadian death metal.
“Something happened in the last three years, where I dropped almost all punk music. I still sometimes listen to it, but I don’t have that driving force to listen to it,” explains Stephanie, who sings the praises of bands like Beyond Creation during our interview.
“I kind of get where my husband has been coming from for the past 11 years: it’s the fast and the death metal and the tech death that actually has me totally enamored right now. I’m just absolutely blown away by it. It’s funny, with [Hay] coming in as the vocalist… We were looking for a totally different sound with the death metal growls and the black metal screams every once and a while for emphasis. We were looking for a change. We didn’t want to do the nu metal/ mainstream metal; we wanted something true to where we were all coming from. Davis is a black metal guy, [Waram] is a huge black metal guy, and Brent and I are death metal people. Davis is really young, so he’s brought in those whole fresh take on it.”
The band is currently working on another long-in-the-works recording, despite having one guitarist as compared to their former setup of featuring a rhythm and lead.
“Honestly at this point, we get a much better response without a lead at all, we are very solid rhythmically, and it’s just super tight,” Stephanie explains. “[Drummer Brent] and [Waram] are the heart of the writing core, and Davis and I come in later on after the fact… it’s been on hold for so long, and now it’s an explosion.”
After the dust and grime has been wiped from the tour van after their upcoming tour, prepare for more recorded tunes, delivered by Canadian death metallers with a penchant for quading and aural devastation.
See Kryosphere on their West Coast Katastrophe Fall Tour in Calgary on September 26th at Lord Nelson’s Bar & Grill, in Red Deer on September 27th at Murph’s Pub, and in Edmonton on September 28th at DV8.AB, Alberta, DV8, Kryosphere, Lord Nelson's, Murph's Pub, quading