As I hit play to begin the dark journey that is Pyres debut full length, Year Of Sleep, I began to think about metal music as a whole, and the possible lack thereof in my life as of late and it lead me to a question. “If I had to stereotype myself, would I be a metalhead in the truest sense of the term?” Sure, I love metal and more importantly the undeniable atmosphere of live metal music but, and I’m stereotyping here, I seem a little behind when it comes to embracing the full package that is true metal-dom. Hell, I’m gonna take my wife to see Neko Case next month and I’m gonna like it. Not a lot of metalheads claiming that. I’ve never had long hair before but I do have at least three shirts in my closet right now with seriously Satanic overtones. I never attended a single Ozzfest back in the late 90’s-2000s when I was at my concert-going peak but I was face down drunk every Monday for too many years to count at Evolutions legendary Metal Monday in Victoria BC. Yes, I said years. So what makes a metal head a metalhead? If you want the serious be all end all answer you should probably just go watch any of the movies Sam Dunn and co. have made. Those motherfuckers are serious metalheads and go deep into examining the cause. For me, i think it’s the want and need of live metal music. A million shows a year come and go that I want to see, some I do and some I don’t. But when heavy metal rolls through town and there’s a name on the marquee that I want to see, look the fuck out.
I want to see Pyres live. Soon. The new full length from the rapid rising Toronto band makes me want nothing more in life. There is just no possible way that they won’t rule live. The roaring riffs that will emanate from the clubs guaranteed to be struggling sound system will kick me in the fucking teeth. The relentless rhythm attack and growling vocals will involuntarily have me pushing for the front. No one will get in my way. Floor, band, floor, band, floor band. My neck will dictate what my eyes get to see. My brain will beg for the tempo to slow, and it will, masterfully at times, only to rear back and unleash a furious howl upon us, those lucky enough to bear witness to this changing of the guard in heavy sludge music. Pyres has the potential to be everything I want in a live metal show.
What’s great about Pyres ‘Year Of Sleep’ LP is that it is only the first. They, whether conscious or not, have managed to avoid any chance of being pigeonholed. They can right now fit into almost any genre of metal comfortably, leaving a world of exploration open to them on further albums without the unnecessary scrutiny of an increasingly cynical society. Some bands take a swing at big change and they’re instantly sellouts, some don’t change enough and they’re boring or washed up. Pyres will excite with this album, not only because of the colossal heaviness it will blast from your speakers but because the possibilities of where they’re going to take it next. And you’ll have plenty of time to ponder those possibilities because the more you listen to Year of Sleep the more you’re going to want to listen to Pyres. Which really sets them up beautifully, doesn’t it?
Thanks to John at Granite House Records for the hook-up and his patience with my computer ineptitude.
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