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Posted: January 18, 2023

Never Say Die, Never Say Never

Edmonton’s heavy-metal heroes Fall of Earth kick off Cranbrook’s first rock show of 2023

by Ferdy Belland

“We are so excited to come down,” said vocalist Alex Rye of Edmonton’s heavy metal warriors Fall Of Earth. “This is our first time playing anywhere in southeastern British Columbia. We’re aiming to play elsewhere in B.C. from the month of March onwards, but the Kootenays are brand-new territory for us. Cranbrook will be our first B.C. show ever!”

Be sure to catch Fall of Earth’s first performance here in our beloved Dogwood Province as they take the stage at the venerable Cranbrook Hotel Pub in our fair Key City’s downtown core on Friday, January 27, along with hard-rocking special guests The Brotherhood of Lost Souls.

“We’ve been pretty darn busy, especially since the pandemic finally faded away,” said Rye (pictured above). “We’ve been posting a long string of videos, we’ve got a Western Canadian tour already planned which’ll take us all the way to Winnipeg and back, there’s been all sorts of radio promotion – the whole wraparound shebang! And we’ve completed a second full-length album which we’re planning to release later this year. We’ve just been go-go-go. A lot of stuff planned for 2023 – and beyond.”

Rye and his bandmates have a lockstep camaraderie they wish to run with nationwide, but they’re keeping their heads squarely on their shoulders.

“We’re taking everything we do with a grain of salt,” explained Rye. “We try not to get too cocky about the ‘Conquer the World’ attitude, but we’re all in this together and we’re certainly taking a long view at the long game. We’re all very energized and positive about what we’ve got going, personally and creatively. It’s a fairly democratic process within the band. We all take turns bringing in lyrics or song fragments or general song structures for all of us to go over and scrutinize. We’re all encouraging each other to take part so nobody feels left out or left behind. No matter which comes first, whether it’s a certain story we want to turn into lyrics, or a winning riff we all like, after we gather in the jam space and work it all together it all seems to tighten and sharpen. It’s a congenial and collective atmosphere all around with us.”

Fall of Earth are gradually gaining more and more of the city spotlight, but their beginnings were far from easy.

“The Edmonton scene has been pretty great as a whole,” remarked Rye. “We formed the band just a few months before the pandemic erupted, which of course threw us for a loop – as well as every other Edmonton band – not to mention the world. Nobody knew how long the situation was going to last, and as more and more lockdown time passed, we saw a sad number of Edmonton bands ended up breaking up out of understandable frustration, and a few local venues folded too, which of course was beyond alarming.

“But we knew we had a special thing with Fall of Earth. We had good people who were good musicians, and we were writing killer songs, and the whole pandemic experience just hardened our resolve. It was a blessing as much as it was a curse, though, since the only thing we could do to bide the time was to write and write and write, and so we just got better and better – even before we played a single concert.”

And it would seem that all that determined woodshedding paid off for the band in spades.

“Once everything opened up again, it was amazing,” said Rye. “I love the metal community here in Edmonton. Alberta as-a-whole is pretty much the strongest bastion of metal music and metal music in Canada once you’re away from Montreal, and it just seemed like the city scene flipped a light switch back on after two and a half years of darkness. Rocking metalheads are just some of the nicest people you’ll ever meet. So welcoming to new bands entering the scene.”

Rye expounds further on the importance of being earnest for the sake of rock and roll.

“One of the best things about our experience in Fall of Earth is playing new shows for new people,” said Rye. “It’s one thing to play for family and friends, which is cool unto itself, but it’s even better to mount a stage in front of a crowd of complete strangers who don’t owe you anything, and you just shove yourself out there and blast out your best and win their hearts and minds through your songs and your stage presence. That’s the best feeling ever.

“Our Hallowe’en gig at the Starlite in Edmonton was super cool that way – there were so many bands involved. Every band bashed out a quick set, maybe 25 minutes each, cover bands, original bands, all sorts of rock and metal – and the headlining act had a full brass section, kicking out Beastie Boys covers! The most colorful audience you’ve ever seen, but they all loved us.”

There are many reasons to love Fall of Earth, and much of them come from Alex Rye himself. A vocalist of unusual power and range, he moves from soaring melodic flights (oftentimes reminiscent of Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington) to the harsh guttural growls normally associated with the death-metal genre, and he pulls it off consistently without seeming to shred his vocal cords against a cabbage grater.

“We have as many elements of straight-ahead hard rock as we do heavy metal elements in our music,” said Rye. “We’re not afraid to play eclectic oddball concerts where at first the other bands on the bill might seem a strange fit to Fall of Earth, but every time we kick it out and everytime we win people over. Any band wants their music to be enjoyed by the widest range of people possible. Not that we’re calculating and cunning like that. Our songwriting comes naturally and organic, and it’s not contrived. We like the crossover sound we’ve created, and others do too.”

Edmonton’s rising stars Fall of Earth play Friday, January 27 at the Cranbrook Hotel Pub (719 Baker Street), with special guests The Brotherhood of Lost Souls. Admission: $10 advance (tickets available at the Pub during regular business hours), $15 at the door.

Doors open 8 p.m., Showtime 9:30 pm.

For more information please call 250-489-4442. Bring earplugs, 10 friends, and a good-time attitude. 

Photos submitted

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