Unleash the Archers: fist-pumpin’ fantasy and letting loose

Saturday 06th, October 2018 / 10:16
By Matty Hume 

Their arrows block out the sun.   
Photo by Shimon Karmel


CALGARY – The deadliest things are the ones you don’t see coming, and even the strongest shield in front of your chest won’t stop an arrow to the knee. But one thing that certainly isn’t as silent as an inbound arrow, it’s the howling order to release the warriors that shoot them.  Hailing from the island keep of Victoria, B.C., Unleash the Archers are musically soaring, bullseye-precise legion that have long-established their place as expert fletchers of the power metal genre. 

“Sometimes I call it melodic power death, sometimes I just call it heavy metal,” says Brittney Slayes,  the commander and vocalist of Unleash the Archers. “We take influence from a lot of genres and our sound can vary from song to song. I don’t really like to define it too much, because everyone kind of hears something different when they listen to us. I’ve had people call us thrash! Which is fine with me, so long as you like what you hear.” 

Whatever label you choose to slap on the sonic landscape made by Slayes with Scott Buchanan on drums, along with Grant Truesdell and Andrew Kingsley on furious guitars and gritty vocals, the content remains a mythic collection of fantasy tales brought to life with a brutal pulse.  

“One of my favourite science fiction authors is Alastair Reynolds. He wrote a killer trilogy that starts with the book Revelation Space and the storyline is so rad. He is an actual astrophysicist, so all of his ideas are based in fact!” claims Slayes. “Movies tend to influence me as well. The ‘80s film Willow really influenced Apex, and I absolutely loved Interstellar, so that will probably influence the next record! I would love to get some synth going and take the story in a less terrestrial direction.” 

For Slayes, the band’s 2017 saga Apex was not the final frontier. “We have an EP in the works that should be out early 2019, and then after that we are going to take a bit of a break and work on the next full length. No exact timeline on that right now, we are going to really take our time and make sure the record is the best it can be.”  

She adds, “No one wants to write the same record over and over again, so we’ll just give it some space and see where it takes us. The story is already written. It will be a sequel to Apex, and we have a few riffs and melodies already on the go. But the overall mood of the record hasn’t been sorted yet!” 

While we wait for another cosmic soundtrack to crash through the atmosphere, let Unleash the Archers help you tap into your own potential energy with a live barrage of metallic quarrels that will have you running for cover.  

“Loud, sweaty and raucous,” says Slayes of the ideal Unleash the Archers show. “We like to hear our fans’ voices and see their fists in the air!  We keep it pretty high energy up on stage and like to have a good time, hopefully the crowd can see that and it rubs off on them a little! Metal doesn’t have to be so serious all the time, let’s just sing our hearts out and enjoy ourselves a little for once!” 


See Unleash the Archers October 12 at Dickens Pub (Calgary) and October 13 at The Starlite Room (Edmonton)


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