Hard rockers to drop debut CDs

Sonic Outcast of Port Moody. - PHOTO SUBMITTED
Sonic Outcast of Port Moody.
— image credit: PHOTO SUBMITTED

Two Tri-City bands will release their debut CDs this weekend — and both at the Rickshaw Theatre in Vancouver.

Altered Throne, which boasts three members who are graduates of Port Coquitlam’s Terry Fox secondary, will play the venue on Friday at 7 p.m. with Terrifier, Archspire and Argent Strand.

Its eight-track, self-titled metal CD took less than a year to produce, said lead vocalist Andrew Hockley, who, along with drummer Yann Laredo and lead guitarist Matt Perrin, attended Fox.

But while Laredo and Perrin engulfed themselves in the music program at their old high school and became part of a band called Prophet Fulfilled, Hockley said “I kinda just did my thing” until the three joined forces to form Altered Throne, along with guitarists Matt Higgins (bass) and Tyler Skode (rhythm).

It was sticks-man Laredo who came up with the name Altered Throne. “It’s basically about our musical goals: What they used to be and what they are about to become.”

After its CD release party, the band plans to perform regularly in and around the Lower Mainland, with a long-term goal of eventually touring more of the province and country.

Last month, Altered Throne made a splash at the Armstrong Open Air Metal Festival, and has already written more songs in an anticipation of later putting out a second CD.

Hockley insists his band’s brand of metal is considerably different than what many would consider the style’s mainstream.

“Typically with metal you have that thrashy sound... and constant noise,” Hockley said. “We’ve taken [our songs] to have their melodic breaks, which can be more soothing and relaxing. It’s more of a mixed bag of the metal’s genres.”

Meanwhile, Port Moody’s Sonic Outcast will unveil its CD, titled Reason To Be, at the Rickshaw on Saturday at 8 p.m., with the Cut Losses, Amusia and Trout also performing.

Lead vocalist Jonny Della Vera said the hard-rock band, which cites Soundgarden, Alice in Chains and Rush as influences, was formed about a year ago with his brother, Jordan (guitar), and fellow Port Moody secondary grads Mischa Abalakov (guitar), Eliot Doyle (drums) and Kurtis Stangl (bass) — all of whom continue to live in Port Moody.

Della Vera said the band had been scheduled to cut its album with legendary Vancouver producer GGGarth Richardson (Rage Against the Machine, Nickelback) in late 2013; however, the date was bumped up several months when Richardson had an unexpected opening.

“It was a bit of a shock for us to come up with 20 songs so quickly because we only had six written at the time,” Della Vera said. “We just basically wrote and wrote and wrote.”

Sonic Outcast’s 10 tracks took about a month-and-half to record — including in Richardson’s new studio, formerly the Little Mountain Sound Studio B — and the CD title reflects “what we want to do with our lives. Our reason to be is music.”

The unsigned group has worked hard — and spent plenty cash as well as use free resources  — to get where it is today: Doyle’s background is jazz while Abalakov was a music engineering student at Nimbus School of Recording Arts; family and friends have also pitched in with marketing.

And after the CD release? “Our aim is to just keep building our name and base,” Della Vera said. “In the beginning, you just have to give and give and give. But where you make money is at the shows, not with the CDs.

“I guess we just keep going until we get bigger and bigger.”



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