July 10, 2020

Osyron - Foundations

By Calen Henry. A press release in my inbox announcing Osyron's new album Foundations was the first I heard of them. The Calgary band’s album was billed as a symphonic power prog metal album “exploring Canadian history and identity”. As a proud Canadian from their neck of the woods with a penchant for over the top conceptual metal
By Calen Henry.


A press release in my inbox announcing Osyron's new album Foundations was the first I heard of them. The Calgary band’s album was billed as a symphonic power prog metal album “exploring Canadian history and identity”. As a proud Canadian from their neck of the woods with a penchant for over the top conceptual metal, I knew I had to write about it.

Somewhat in contrast to the lofty promise of the press release, Foundations is under half an hour but manages to pack a cohesive conceptual arc into that short run time. Through the five tracks of down-tuned, "Djent-ey", melodic prog metal the band weave tales of conquest and glory in battle that, at times, verge on rock opera bombast. The music is epic with down-tuned chugging, belted out choruses with melodies doubled by hard rock guitar lines, and even a few forays into blast beats and rasped vocals. The album, though, is more than grandiose glory-peddling.

Underneath the album’s raucous tropes of the glory of colonization, battle, and sacrifice runs an undercurrent of pathos and regret. The lyrics reckon with the actual cost of colonialism and unending conquest. They delve into the human and social cost of colonization. What starts as stories of grandeur in conquest ends up bringing in the cost of war, mourning the loss of friends and comrades, and ultimately the realization that Canada was built on blood and genocide and we must reckon with that in order to move forward.

I came for the promise of Symphonic prog Canadiana and stayed for the skillful melding of genres and a cohesive lyrical arc packed into fewer than thirty Heritage Minutes.

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