Sanktuary – Winter’s Doom – Self-Release

Extreme and excellent heavy metal from Canada


Man, this is pure heavy metal, true heavy metal, untouchable heavy metal, only for fans of heavy metal, true fans, non-compromising fans.

Sanktuary hails from Whitehorse, in the province of Yukon, far from Canuck centres and according to them the Canadian Siberia.

This is their second full length, but they are active since 2008. This is the time for them to get their place under the sun.

This fantastic album opens up with Space Race, a kind of non-speedy Living Death. Although naturally one can say they are, like Fenriz like to say, Canadian Metal, for me they sound more Germanic in nature. Anyway the wind blows. The vocals are pure 1980’s , lots of solos, catchy phrases, a natural born classic.

Wind is the Wind follows suit with the flawless sound, a blast from the past, similar to the first one, so there’s not much to add.

Of course a band of this calibre (note that I’m acting British today, even if MSWord correct my “English fault” to CALIBER) won’t disappoint and won’t deliver rehashed sounds, so the third track is a killer mid-to-fast tempo called Vermin Lord, lengthy in structure, but first class in composition, a helluva song, delicious to the headbanger ears, hell why I’ve never heard of them before?

The title-track has an ounce of Thrash Metal, maybe because the quasi-harsh vocals of Alan Binger. Great onset, and over again an imperative track.

Open Your Eyes goes further into the thrash of Overkill, Metal Church and Annihilator. The funny thing is that it isn’t an abrupt movement, normally the tracks sound the same as from the beginning of the cd (inferring that if you like the first tracks you’ll like these ones as well), but a subtle change of tempo and high-pitched solos gives the path of the album from now on.

And that is a path of violence of course like in the thrasher Corpse Blockade and now the game inverts: they become a thrash metal band with hints of heavy… Funny eh? Anyhow, the earbleeding solos are compulsory and the metal binge doesn’t die.

Closer is the icing in the cake: Maximum Authority is like a primitive Sacred Reich. Raw in its approach and hateful in its execution the song shows that they are no friends of modern technology.

All in all this is a flawless CD, the most underrated band in the moment and I’ll try to remember them in my list of the “best of” of 2016. Listen to it. Like it. Or go die!

Winter’s Doom is out now and it is Self-Released

(Daniel “Roderick” Death)

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