Epic Canadian Metal Force Gatekeeper will release its debut full-length album East of Sun on April 27 via Cruz Del Sur Music.
The band have released a video for first track, ‘Blade of Cimmeria’.
The compact disc version of East of Sun includes two CD-only bonus tracks (Omen’s “Death Rider” and Savatage’s “Hall of the Mountain King”). The gatefold vinyl LP version includes an A2 poster and digital download code. Acclaimed artist Duncan Storr (Skyclad, Rage, Dark Forest) painted the gorgeous album cover.
Recorded over the span of six months at Harbourside Studios in Vancouver, Canada, East Of Sun was produced by Mike Rogerson, whose previous credits include Annihilator, Aggression, 88 Mile Trip and Loverboy.
The East of Sun title is a shortened version of a book of Scandinavian folk tales that parallels the content on the record where each song stands on its own. The album boasts a mixture of older, unreleased material written by guitarist Geoff Blackwell which are complemented by live staples that have recently been updated. In the words of Blackwell:
“East of Sun is pure heavy metal with a sword and sorcery flourish. We wear our influences on our sleeves, but we don’t want to be a pale imitation of them. We try to capture the spirit of what we love without copying anyone’s’ notes. This album has our fastest song and it’s got our biggest, most epic slow-burner and many songs in between. It has melodic electric guitar playing coupled with fierce riffs, thunderous rhythms, mystical acoustic passages and, of course, a unique and varied performance from our singer, Jean-Pierre Abbaud (Spell, Borrowed Time).”
Originally formed in 2009 as a solo project by guitarist Geoff Blackwell, Gatekeeper has assembled an impressive array of EPs and splits, including an appearance on Metal Blade’s Metal Massacre XIV to which they contributed “Bell Of Tarantia.”