Canada’s Spiritbox get djenty with new song, ‘Belcarra’.
[PC: Kyle Joinson Photography]
Remember Iwrestledabearonce? That weird and wild math-core band that was polarising people left, right and centre in the late 2000’s and early 2010’s? Course ya do! Because who could forget utterly insane shit like this and this!? Well, while Iwrestledabearonce are without a vocalist currently and their future is now uncertain, most people know and love them for the crazed yet skilful vocal work that vocalist Courtney LaPlante delivered during her time in the band from 2012 to 2016. (And let’s also not forget about Krysta Cameron’s vocal contributions to those first couple of releases either.)
Courtney actually left the Canadian metal band back in 2016, alongside guitarist Mike Stringer, who had a short-lived one-year stint in the band. However, in 2017, both former members returned to heavy music with a new band, Spiritbox, launching with their self-titled, seven-track debut EP. But that was two years ago now, and Spiritbox are heading into 2019 with new material, new material like ‘Belcarra‘.
‘Belcarra‘, seemingly named after the village of the same name on the shore of Indian Arm – a part of Vancouver’s metro area in Canada – this ain’t some rip-off of what Mike and Courtney were doing during their time in IWABO. As this is informed more so by recent modern prog-metal trends, as opposed to the early 2000’s mathy metalcore that their old band loved a little bit too much.
Right away, this new song doesn’t really grab anyone’s attention, starting off with little fan-fair via some string-bending riffs and generic djenty tones. But trust me, stick with it for a bit, as it gets much better. Namely as the band drop in a nifty Middle-Eastern guitar lick over the top; make things rhythmically more interesting (that short-lived break at 2:59 is sick); Courtney pulling back her screams to remind all of us about her impressive singing talents; and hitting hard with a distortion-less, bass thumping section set under gliding clean vocals for a glorious prog-metal moment, kicking off at 1:45.
‘Belcarra‘ isn’t as extreme or all over the place as the sound of the last band that this group largely comes from, but it’s still got some of those chaotic-metal extremities tucked away into its run-time. In another sense, it kinda feels like what IWABO would’ve done following 2015’s ‘Hail Mary‘; a more serious, less-juvenile, and somewhat less sporadic metal sound, yet one that lands with more cohesive vision.
Give ‘Belcarra‘ a listen or three below as it’s s’not half bad. Expect much more from Spiritbox in 2019!