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UNLEASH THE ARCHERS Set For New AI Inspired Concept Album, Phantoma

By Larry Petro, News Monkey
Saturday, February 17, 2024 @ 11:45 AM


Out May 10 Via Napalm Records; First Single, Video For "Green & Glass" Launches

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PHoto Credit: Shimon Karmel

  Canada's most exciting metal band, UNLEASH THE ARCHERS, is thrilled to announce the upcoming release of their transfixing sixth studio release, the AI-inspired concept album Phantoma, out May 10, 2024, via Napalm Records. The new album follows the band's breakout 2020 album, Abyss, which won the JUNO Award for Metal/Hard Music Album of the Year after debuting at #1 on the US Current Hard Music and Top New Artist charts.

Frontwoman and lyricist Brittney Slayes conjured Phantoma's concept in 2021; before the swarm of pressing commentary surrounding AI began to reach an all-time high. Led by the album's protagonist Phantoma, a Phase 4/Network Tier 0 unit - model A, the story recounts the trials of AI gaining sentience on a dystopian, near-future planet Earth. With the band's one-of-a-kind blend of power metal, traditional heavy metal, modern prog, and pop sensibilities, UNLEASH THE ARCHERS spin a web of sharp musicality, high sci-fi concept, and important social commentary about discovering the brutal truths behind the manufactured sheen of social media posturing.

Today's album announcement kicks off with the release of its first single, "Green & Glass" - an unforgettable opus traversing the album's dystopian concept with dynamic verses and prog-laden guitar work. Its innovative accompanying music video features Phantoma discovering new and harrowing realities and was created using AI while still supporting traditional artists by having character models trained exclusively on a body of work licensed from artist Bo Bradshaw.

UNLEASH THE ARCHERS says about "Green & Glass":

"We struggled for a while to decide which song would lead the way for this record, and in the end chose "Green & Glass" because it is the song that inspired the cover artwork, but also because it doesn't give too much away about the concept behind the album. We wanted nothing more than to be able to create a fully cinematic retelling of the story through our music videos, and were so stoked when the boys at RuneGate Studio expressed an interest in learning how to use Stable Diffusion to make our dreams come true! They trained the model on the work of Bo Bradshaw, which gives it a beautifully unique animation style; we got to bring his magnificent t-shirt artwork to life!"

Watch the remarkable official video for "Green & Glass" on kNAC.COM HERE.

Following 2020's triumph, Abyss, which was dubbed by Bandcamp as "a mandatory listen", and named by Loudwire as one of the best rock and metal albums of the year, UNLEASH THE ARCHERS ascend with Phantoma. Defying controversy and bringing their imagination to life, UNLEASH THE ARCHERS utilized AI during the writing, filming, and production process on Phantoma, and weaved electronic and synth-wave elements throughout the album's 10 colossal anthems, which - in line with its theme - prove much darker and heavier in comparison to the bright positivity of Abyss.

Album opener "Human Era" sets the tone with imagery of a bleak, windswept futurescape that crescendos headlong into the breakneck pace of power metal bastion "Ph4/NT0mA" - a masterwork of dueling guitar solos and vocal acrobatics. Trad-metal influenced "Buried In Code" lights the way with pummeling rhythms before the album's path turns dark on heavy metal hardened "The Collective", with Brittney Slayes' warm tones inviting the listener to 'join or stand aside'! Hair-raising first single "Green & Glass" unveils the truth before the upbeat 80s flavored "Gods In Decay" and the extraordinary balladic anthem "Give It Up Or Give It All" showcase the varied songwriting prowess of UNLEASH THE ARCHERS' modern era. A trifecta of concept closers begins with the moody "Ghosts In The Mist", leading into the soaring yet menacing "Seeking Vengeance" before closing with the bittersweet tale of "Blood Empress".

Mixed and mastered by Jacob Hansen, and with lead guitarist Andrew Kingsley at the helm as both principal songwriter and producer, Phantoma is an exciting advancement in UNLEASH THE ARCHERS' songwriting and storytelling mastery, and a giant leap forward in their towering musical trajectory.

Phantoma Track List:

  • "Human Era"
  • "Ph4/NT0mA"
  • "Buried In Code"
  • "The Collective"
  • "Green & Glass"
  • "Gods In Decay"
  • "Give It Up Or Give It All"
  • "Ghosts In The Mist"
  • "Seeking Vengeance"
  • "Blood Empress"
Phantoma will be available in the following formats:
  • Earbook Edition with 2CD (2 Bonus Tracks and instrumental version of the album), 7" Single (2 bonus tracks on Black vinyl), 60 pp booklet (Napalm Mail Order only - limited to 1000)
  • 2LP Gatefold in Marbled Orange Red with 24-page vinyl booklet and art print (Napalm Mail Order only - limited to 300)
  • 2LP Gatefold in Glow In the Dark (Napalm Mail Order only - limited to 300)
  • 2LP Gatefold in Splatter Aquamarine Orange (Napalm International Mail Order only - limited to 300)
  • 2LP Gatefold in Transparent Lime Green (Napalm North American Mail Order only - limited to 300)
  • 2LP Gatefold in Silver (North American indie retail only - limited to 700)
  • 2LP Gatefold in Black
  • Cassette Tape Edition in Fluorescent Green with White Print (Napalm Mail Order only - limited to 200)
  • Jewel Case CD Edition
  • Digital Album
UNLEASH THE ARCHERS will tour across the globe in 2024, with dates already announced in North America, Europe, the UK, Australia, and New Zealand.




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