I’m a Christmas Grinch. Nothing makes me grumpier than stepping foot in a mall, and Christmas music is only good when it’s the accompaniment to The Muppet’s Christmas Carol, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, or the symphonic background to Rare Exports. In a living room. With a big glass of beer in your hand. But I digress…. At press time, there were but a handful of shows announced in December, and we covered most of them. However, there are a few more to report, as well as some news to parlay.
First off, the Wacken Metal Battle Canada competition has been expanded. Last year, this competition resulted in Toronto’s epic power metal/death metal band Crimson Shadows performing at the infamous metal festival in Germany. For the 2014 rendition of the competition, finalists will be chosen from Vancouver, Alberta (after a battle featuring bands from Calgary and Edmonton), Toronto, and Montreal. Band submissions can be submitted to http://www.metalbattle.ca/apply.html. Submissions open on December 5 and close on January 31, 2014. Canadian battle rounds will be judged by a panel of music industry representatives in March, April, and May, and the final round will occur on June 7 in Toronto with five finalists. The national final will include two finalists from Toronto, and one from each other location. Bands competing in the qualifying and semi-final rounds must buy advance tickets to sell to their fans “to ensure bands will perform in front of a good audience.” Once bands advance to the final round, there are no mandatory ticket sales. Interested? Check out the rules online at http://metalbattle.ca/rules.html, and submit your tunes!
Here is another piece of excellent news: Calgary sludge act The Whorehouse Massacre has been signed to Transcending Obscurity Records, a label based in India. The prolific project is preparing to unleash two EPs – dubbed VI and Altar of the Goat Skull – on the label shortly before releasing their new full length. We caught up with bandleader W.P. to learn more.
“The Whorehouse Massacre is a band that writes primarily sludge based music. Other influences such as noise, drone, grind, death, hardcore, funeral, and black metal have occasionally appeared over the last eight years,” explained W.P. “The Whorehouse Massacre started out as a one-person band in 2005 and has since added and subtracted members…. W.P. and K.H. are the two members of the band at this time. Scott Stearns is a recurring guest.”
Despite the signing, the band will continue on in semi obscurity.
“We don’t have any plans to tour or to play live in the next few months,” wrote W.P. “We are very happy to be working with Transcending Obscurity and we are planning on finishing the new album for a 2014 release.”
Back to show news: the rescheduled Church of Misery show has been cancelled due to continuing issues stemming from the shut down of American Congress. The tour will be rescheduled for the spring of 2014, and tickets can be refunded at the point of purchase.
Head to Dickens Pub (1000 – 9 Ave. S.W.) on Thursday, December 19 to help celebrate with Nosis’ seven-year anniversary. The sludgy, rocking, stoner band is fun as hell live, and always puts on rocking show. Joining them will be Calgary punk act The Escorts and Siksika punk act No More Moments. Cover is $8. Get your drink on.
Several more shows are sure to be announced. If you haven’t already, join the Metal Alberta Facebook page for updates. Enjoy your Christmas; see you in a mosh pit in the New Year.
Words and photo by Sarah Kitteringham