Technical death metal band, Archspire, plays the Upstairs Lounge March 10. (Keri Coles/Oak Bay News)

Death metal blows tweed curtain wide open with Juno nomination

Technical death metal band Archspire nominated for metal/hard music album of the year

A technical death metal band started by a drummer who grew up in Oak Bay, has received a Juno nomination for metal/hard music album of the year.

“It’s pretty mind-blowing for us to be nominated considering the genre of music we play. It’s pretty extreme music,” said Spencer Prewett, Archspire’s drummer and founder. “It’s not anything that ever comes up on the mainstream radar so we never dreamed that we would be recognized by the Canadian government.”

Archspire, currently back in Canada for three weeks in between their European tour and upcoming Japan and U.S. tour, played two shows on Vancouver Island this past weekend.

“Since this album came out things have gone into hyper-speed. The offers have just been flying in,” said Prewett.

Attending Glenlyon Norfolk and Vic High while growing up in Oak Bay, Prewett started diving into death metal at the end of high school. After he finished school he felt that he needed to go beyond Victoria if he wanted to submerse himself in the death metal scene. A friend who was living in the Netherlands at the time suggested Prewett do an exchange and get a work visa for the Netherlands as his favorite bands toured there all the time.

“With the Netherlands being so small, you could go to another town, see the band, take the train home and still be in bed in time for work the next day. That idea thrilled me,” said Prewett, who took the advice and moved to the Netherlands for a year. It was during his time there that he was first introduced to the genre of technical death metal.

When Prewett moved back to Canada he settled in Vancouver to pursue music and start a band. In 2009 he brought some friends together, found a guitar player on Craigslist, and started Archspire. Prewett told the musicians what his goal was and what genre he wanted to play. He even created a code of conduct which included how many times a week they would play and firm rules about not using drugs or getting drunk before shows. He made it very clear that everyone had to be devoted to their instruments and the band had to be their main focus.

The band consists of Oliver Rae Aleron on vocals, Dean Lamb on eight-string guitar, Tobi Morelli on seven-string guitar, Jared Smith on bass, and Spencer Prewett on drums.

“We found guys with the same mentality that were willing to work their butts off for it and make it the main focus in their lives,” said Prewett.

Their dedication has been rewarded nine years on. The band first found out about the Juno nomination on Facebook, shortly before they got the official email.

The Juno website says Archspire’s brand new album ‘Relentless Mutation’ is the death metal record of 2017, and “sees Archspire emerge as one of the genre’s apex predators. The complexity and fluidity of the compositions is astonishing.”

Prewett has 19 family members that plan to attend the 47th annual Juno Awards in Vancouver on March 25, to help celebrate the band’s accomplishment.

“I have an extremely supportive family. A great team. My mom was in a touring band when she was a teenager and used that to pay for medical school. She’s always been especially supportive,” said Prewett. “My family does pretty well and they cast a pretty big shadow. They’ve never had a problem with me pursuing music, they never pressured me to be a lawyer or a doctor. I got a lot of support from my family.”

“I couldn’t be prouder of Spencer and his band’s achievement,” said Prewett’s aunt and Oak Bay Coun. Hazel Braithwaite. “As you can imagine, technical death metal is not a mainstream genre, so to achieve this recognition is exceedingly difficult. Since his time as a student at Glenlyon and then at Vic High, Spencer has worked extremely hard on his drumming – enabling him to become one of the fastest and best drummers in the world – again not an easy feat. I know his family and his fans mean a lot to him and I couldn’t be prouder to call him my nephew!”

It’s a busy year ahead for Archspire who will be touring in Australia and New Zealand in August and will return to Europe for shows in November and December. They also have some Canadian dates lined up before heading to India.

“It’s going to be an exciting year,” said Prewett.


 

keri.coles@oakbaynews.com

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

Technical death metal band, Archspire, plays the Upstairs Lounge March 10. (Keri Coles/Oak Bay News)

Technical death metal band, Archspire, plays the Upstairs Lounge March 10. (Keri Coles/Oak Bay News)

Technical death metal band, Archspire, plays the Upstairs Lounge March 10. (Keri Coles/Oak Bay News)

Technical death metal band, Archspire, plays the Upstairs Lounge March 10. (Keri Coles/Oak Bay News)

Technical death metal band, Archspire, plays the Upstairs Lounge March 10. (Keri Coles/Oak Bay News)

Technical death metal band, Archspire, plays the Upstairs Lounge March 10. (Keri Coles/Oak Bay News)

Technical death metal band, Archspire, plays the Upstairs Lounge March 10. (Keri Coles/Oak Bay News)

Technical death metal band, Archspire, plays the Upstairs Lounge March 10. (Keri Coles/Oak Bay News)

Just Posted

Fiddle tunes complete farm bistro experience

Year-end recital at the Roost features Nellie Quinn’s fiddle students

Rebirth of downtown cultural festival coming to Victoria in July

Folktoria aims to pick up where Folkfest left off

Pass a pint: Great Canadian Beer Festival tickets on sale now

Over 200 brews and ciders will be featured at this year’s craft celebration

Art Gallery of Greater Victoria expansion gets $6M boost from province

Project many years in the making, but planned for current Rockland site

B2B season has rare Island line-up of shows in Qualicum Beach

Month-and-a-half of performances kicks off with Baskerville comedy July 3

VIDEO: Jazz vocalist Susannah Adams continues her Island tour Sunday at Crofton pub

Fresh off a triumphant show at Hermann’s Jazz Club, Adams set to light up Osborne Bay Pub

B.C. tourism grant helps Sooke Fine Arts Show

Grant will attract audiences from across B.C. and Washington

Disney production filming at Victoria’s Government House today

Made-for-TV movie will feature the inside of the Rockland Avenue mansion

Duncan Has Talent performers prepping for summer show

Signups on now for crowd-pleasing series staged at Charles Hoey Park as part of The 39 Days of July.

Gabriola glass blowers Dirk Huysman, Mary Ann Richards launch first solo show

Plan a road trip: Island’s Hive Emporium hosting exhibition through June 24

PRIDE WEEK: Popularity has surged for Memorial Drag Ball game in the past 20 years

The venue has changed, but the theme of not taking one’s self too seriously remains

5 fun things to do this weekend in Greater Victoria

Car Free YYJ, family fishing, Sooke bluegrass, walk for cancer and a mascot’s birthday

Most Read