CRIMSON SHADOWS might mix power metal with death metal but it isn’t as bad as it might sound. They actually manage to pull it off really well. Find out more by reading this interview. Anders Ekdahl ©2012
The Canadian metal scene seems to have numerous of bands to showcase but few make it big outside of their native borders. What is it about Canadian metal bands and the international press that doesn’t mix?
-That’s a really good question and to tell you the truth I don’t know if I have the answer for you. I personally think it’s just a simple lack of opportunity over here. Metal does have a following in
Canada but we’re not as lucky as other people in the USA or Europe. What I mean by that is, if it’s not a signed band then no one really cares here. The local scene in the Toronto area has been dying pretty steadily for the last four or so years. We used to have so many amazing venues, great promoters, and there used to be some pretty decent turnouts as well from random on the street who didn’t know any of the bands playing. Now, most of them are closed down and it doesn’t look like that’s stopping anytime soon.
Crimson Shadow as a name doesn’t really give away what kind of metal you play. How conscious was the choice of band name in order to reveal as little as possible about the sound?
-It’s funny you say that because the name “Crimson Shadows” is actually taken from a fantasy novel series written by R.A. Salvatore. With death metal bands named “Job for A Cowboy” and metalcore bands named “We butter the bread with butter” I don’t think people really take the name of a band seriously anymore. I’ve found recently that a band name is simply just that … a name. It’s just something to identify with and I think it’s the responsibility of the band to make their own name stand out within a genre.
Power metal and death metal are two metal sounds that don’t really mix well. Yet you chose to mix them. How do you get power metal to gel with death metal? What part is what in your sound?
-We really wanted to do something different and original. There are tons of power metal bands that sound very similar and lots of death metal bands that are the same way but we see no reason why you can’t mix the two. In short we write power metal music with an extreme feel, and we have death metal vocals as the main focus, we also have some clean vocals to add in a little more melody.
What was it that made you chose to mix these two styles of metal? What bands inspire you to take this bold step into unknown metal territory?
-Being huge power metal fans we found a lot of friends and fellow metal lovers don’t enjoy the high singing that is power metal vocals, so we decided to throw in death metal vocals and it turned out pretty well! As song writers we are always trying to push the envelope and do things nobody is daring to try. Many of the bands who inspired us are DragonForce, Children of Bodom and Blind Guardian who all have done different things to change the genre of metal to their own style. We never like to write the same song twice and we always like to mix it up so venturing out into unknown territory is pretty standard for us! We like to go on our own music quest!
How long in the making has the debut album “Glory On The Battlefield” been?
-The album has been about 4 years in the making. We had been collectively writing songs over that time, along with playing shows. The main problem that delayed the release was numerous bass player changes. Now that the album is being released, and we have a steady bass player, we are looking forward to get back into writing and recording a follow up album.
How much time and effort do you devote to the band in order for it to happen? What sacrifices have you made and what sacrifices are you ready to make?
-We devote two nights per week for band rehearsal/discussion for it to happen, along with any other night that we could use a meeting, or an extra rehearsal. We have sacrificed countless amounts of things including: jobs, relationships, family, friendships, health, and money just to name a few. We are ready to make all the same sacrifices and more to play music for the rest of our lives. We love what we do and there is no better feeling in the world than being up on that stage playing for people.
How do you avoid making the same mistakes bands before you have done?
– While some mistakes are unavoidable (playing poorly promoted shows and not getting properly paid ) in the Canadian scene, it is quite easy to make good decisions as a band to bring you to the next level. To avoid making mistakes you have to make sure everything you do as a band is constantly pushing you forward and never standing still such as new merch designs, bigger gigs and stronger songs. The only real way to avoid mistake are to make a few yourself along the way.
With the accumulated knowledge of all the bands making it before you out there how easy is it to put together your own manual of how to make it?
– As easy as it may seem to make it, it still takes a lot of hard work and dedication from all the members in the band. You may be able to take certain steps towards your goal but every music scene has its challenges you have to get past and sometimes it just takes time and hard work for you to be noticed by the right people. Making good contacts and surrounding your band with the right people (manager/booking agent ) can lead to great success!
Where do you see the biggest potential of attracting the biggest accolade for your music?
– We take a huge influence from European and Scandinavian Metal bands and have already had some recognition in those areas. One of the greatest things about the internet is that you don’t need a major label to get your music to other countries. It’s obvious that the biggest market is always the US because of how close the cities are and how much press is around everything that goes on. We hope that the world will take notice of what we are doing and not get stuck in one certain area
How do you go from releasing an album to touring in support of it? What kind of master plan do you have for the band?
– Well once we fully release our debut album we will have a few small tours in our area leading up to an East Coast tour in the summer. We hope to be touring more throughout the end of the year as well. Right now we have a few distribution deals in talks but as an end goal we would like to record our next album with a label who will put us on the road or 6-9 months out of the year. We all love playing shows and being on the road and want to make that our full time job.