PROTEST THE HERO

Progressive Metal / Melodic Metalcore / Metalcore • Canada
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Protest the Hero is a Canadian progressive metal / melodic metalcore band from Whitby in Ontario.

Originally named Happy Go Lucky,the band changed its name to Protest the Hero shortly before releasing its debut EP, Search for the Truth, in 2002. In 2005, the band released their first full-length album Kezia on the indie label Underground Operations.

On January 23, 2006, the band signed with Vagrant Records for Kezia's American release on April 4, 2006.

The band's second full-length album, Fortress was released by Underground Operations in Canada and by Vagrant Records worldwide on January 29, 2008. The band released their third studio album, Scurrilous, on March 22, 2011. The band released their independent and latest album, Volition on October 29, 2013.
Thanks to Stooge, Bosh66, tupan for the updates

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PROTEST THE HERO Discography

PROTEST THE HERO albums / top albums

PROTEST THE HERO Kezia album cover 4.26 | 19 ratings
Kezia
Melodic Metalcore 2005
PROTEST THE HERO Fortress album cover 3.84 | 22 ratings
Fortress
Melodic Metalcore 2008
PROTEST THE HERO Scurrilous album cover 3.75 | 8 ratings
Scurrilous
Progressive Metal 2011
PROTEST THE HERO Fortress (Instrumental) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fortress (Instrumental)
Melodic Metalcore 2011
PROTEST THE HERO Volition album cover 4.41 | 12 ratings
Volition
Progressive Metal 2013
PROTEST THE HERO Volition (Instrumental) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Volition (Instrumental)
Progressive Metal 2016
PROTEST THE HERO Palimpsest album cover 4.00 | 3 ratings
Palimpsest
Progressive Metal 2020

PROTEST THE HERO EPs & splits

PROTEST THE HERO Search For The Truth album cover 1.00 | 1 ratings
Search For The Truth
Melodic Metalcore 2002
PROTEST THE HERO A Calculated Use Of Sound album cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
A Calculated Use Of Sound
Metalcore 2003
PROTEST THE HERO Sequoia Throne - The Remix EP album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Sequoia Throne - The Remix EP
Progressive Metal 2008
PROTEST THE HERO Pacific Myth album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Pacific Myth
Progressive Metal 2016

PROTEST THE HERO live albums

PROTEST THE HERO Gallop Meets The Earth album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Gallop Meets The Earth
Melodic Metalcore 2009

PROTEST THE HERO demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

PROTEST THE HERO Kezia Sampler album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Kezia Sampler
Melodic Metalcore 2006

PROTEST THE HERO re-issues & compilations

PROTEST THE HERO singles (14)

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Heretics & Killers
Melodic Metalcore 2006
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Bloodmeat
Melodic Metalcore 2007
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Sequoia Throne
Melodic Metalcore 2008
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C'est La Vie
Progressive Metal 2011
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Hair Trigger
Progressive Metal 2011
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Clarity
Progressive Metal 2013
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Ragged Tooth
Progressive Metal 2015
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Tidal
Progressive Metal 2015
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Cold Water
Progressive Metal 2015
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Cataract
Progressive Metal 2016
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Harbinger
Progressive Metal 2016
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Caravan
Progressive Metal 2016
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The Canary
Progressive Metal 2020
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From The Sky
Progressive Metal 2020

PROTEST THE HERO movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

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DVD Sampler
Melodic Metalcore 2006

PROTEST THE HERO Reviews

PROTEST THE HERO Palimpsest

Album · 2020 · Progressive Metal
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Kingcrimsonprog
Canada’s Young Punk-Turned-Mature Prog act, Protest The Hero return in 2020 with their fifth full-length studio album, Palimpsest. It follow’s the creatively marketed and disturbed Pacific Myth EP from four years earlier, and is their first proper length album since 2013’s superb Volition (remember, the crowdfunded one with Chirs Adler from Lamb Of God on drums?).

PTH have been one of my favourite bands for years and years now. Their ridiculously-good debut album Kezia could well be in my top 10 albums by any band ever. I’ve seen them live a few times and utterly loved it. They haven’t released a record yet that I haven’t liked. So, you’ll have to forgive me if this review is a little biased, ok?

If you don’t know the band; they are a very techy, slightly complex, musically ambitious band focused on baffling guitar lines, awkward drum patterns, but anchored by a really emotive and varied singer who delivers their really insightful and creative lyrics with such power and personality thatI it gels into this really powerful whole that somehow seems catchy and fun despite how difficult it would be to actually play or hum along to otherwise. There’s also a sort of maturity and balance to it. It isn’t jarring mixes of styles, its all very cohesive.

As they’re such a varied band, its hard to know who to recommend them to fans of? Megadeth due to the guitar wizardry? Periphery due to the techy nature? Letlive due to the really powerful vocals and lyrics? Dream Theater due to the ambition? Killswitch Engage, as if you are the kind of person who hates anything ‘core then major aspects of the band’s sound might scare you off? All or none of the above? I don’t know.

This fifth album is both a mix of various areas they’ve tried before on other releases, and in some cases trying new things and breaking new ground.

A lot of the reviews I’ve read about this album focus on how guitar and drum parts are sort of reminiscent of the band’s first two albums, Kezia, and the ever-popular Fortress (I guess them recently touring doing Fortress in its entirety live might’ve affected their song writing – ‘Soliloquy’ and ‘Gardenias’ in particular stand out as being Fortress-like). But equally, I can hear a lot of the touches from their more recent album and EP, some of the orchestral touches like the end of ‘From The Sky’ & ‘Little Snakes’ are reminiscent of things they’ve tried on tracks like ‘Caravan’ a few years ago, and shimmering guitars from the break in ‘The Fireside’ could be on one of the deep cuts from Voltion. Most of all, some of the newer vocal styles that developed over the years wouldn’t be heard on those first two albums. There’s also parts that don’t sound anything like they’ve done before, such as the grand sweeping opening to the first track. This album is definitely more of a culmination of a whole career rather than a rehashing of the past.

My only minor flaw with the album is that it would probably be better if track eight was the closer, it has the perfect endeding with the nice little piano outro there.

Lyrically; this is a very interesting album, covering topics from the Hindenburg disaster, the plight of the Native Americans, female aeroplane pioneer Amelia Earhart and even the Make America Great Again movement from the perspective of outsiders. As always, its not even so much the topics but the balanced, intelligent and interesting ways in which they are discussed and the clever ways they’re turned into catchy lines you just want to shout out at a concert.

Highlights include the speedy ‘All Hands,’ the heavy ‘Soliloquy,’ the ambitious ‘Little Snakes’ and perhaps most of all, the feminist themed single ‘The Canary’ which is boundlessly catchy and sticks in my head for hours after every listen, (the pre-chorus is as good as the best chorus on most albums, the part where it says “7,000 miles of ocean stand between me and my destiny/Somewhere beyond it or inside it” puts chills down my spine).

Even after being out a few months, its still hard to know where to place this album ranked in the band’s discography, they’re the kind of band like Tool or Opeth that give more and more on every listen and everything they do is a grower that you don’t fully get all the nuances of on first listen, but my first impressions so far are that while it doesn’t dethrone my number one spot, it is definitely a damn fine album and in the upper half of the discography. If you aren’t a fan yet, it should be a great entry point, and if you are a fan already there’s no way you could be disappointed.

PROTEST THE HERO Kezia

Album · 2005 · Melodic Metalcore
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siLLy puPPy
PROTEST THE HERO originally had the name of Happy Go Lucky and i have to say it was a good move to make the ole switcheroonie cuz that is one totally UN-metal name if i’ve ever heard one. They hail from Ontario, Canada and after releasing one EP in 2002, they released their first full debut album KEZIA on August 2005 in their native Canada and in April 2006 in the US. I have no idea when for other countries. KEZIA is a nebulous concept album that vocalist Rody Walker describes as having a subtle deeper meaning below the theme of an execution of a woman named KEZIA. The overall concept symbolizes the ever quickening decline of society in general described through the life of KEZIA in prison and how she copes with day to day life until her final demise.

Personally i don’t care about this concept. This is metalcore and i can’t understand the lyrics anyway, but for those who do care about these things, it is a nice story that weaves around the brutal metal music with progressive layerings. If you ask me the music of PROTEST THE HERO is a hybrid of The Mars Volta and Between The Buried And Me. The Volta comparisons hold true on a few levels. Firstly Rody Walker’s high pitched range and vocal style really sounds a lot like Cedric Bixler-Zavala’s. I had to check the first time hearing this to make sure this wasn’t another project of Cedric. Secondly, the song structures remind me a lot of The Mars Volta’s as well, at least their most rocking parts. The intermissions have similarities as well but PROTEST doesn’t go fully into psychedelic Krautrock tangents. There are similar guitar tones, vocal styles etc.

On the Buried And Me side of the equation, the metalcore is crisp and staccato with progressive intros and outros and odd time signatures that are abundant and this really has a lot in common. If you ever wondered what The Mars Volta would sound like if they truly ventured into brutal metal with lightning fast guitar riffs that drift from chaotic Psyopus type dissonance to melodic neoclassical shredding with pummeling riffs and percussion while dropping a big chunk of the Latin and psychedelic influences, then you don’t have to go to an alternate universe to find out, it can be found in this one and PROTEST THE HERO sounds just like that to me. I don’t find this band to be as adventurous as say “Colors” by Between The Buried In Me which leaves no rock unturned for influences, but this album finds a lot of sounds to incorporate into the melodic metalcore to dish out. While metalcore isn’t usually the sub genre of metal i mostly gravitate towards, i do find some of the progressive types very satisfying and this one has earned some staying power in my world. It is an album that delivers in being extremely brutal, soft and sensual and above all maintains melodic developments throughout its run.

PROTEST THE HERO Volition

Album · 2013 · Progressive Metal
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Kingcrimsonprog
Volition is the fourth full-length studio album by the Canadian band Protest The Hero. It was released in 2013 through Razor & Tie, and was produced by Cameron McLellan. Due to the departure of longtime drummer Moe Carlson, the drums on the album were handled by Lamb Of God’s Chirs Adler. He actually really suits the band and if you hadn’t been told you mightn’t realize the drummer had changed, although that being said, on some songs if you pay attention you can definitely tell that its Adler playing.

On the band’s previous record, the track ‘Dunsel’ had some pretty scathing lyrics about the music industry, and it seems that the band have followed through, as this album was funded by the band’s fans through a crowd-sourcing campaign on Indiegogo. Luckily relying on donations has not resulted in any noticeable dip in recording, mixing or packaging quality and the record was made well with no cut corners. Musically the band are just as strong as ever and there is similarly no dip at all.

If you haven’t heard the band before and don’t know what to expect, words won’t really do it justice. The band flits wildly between genres and subgenres at great speed and don’t fit neatly into any one category for too long. There are moments that will remind you of Math, Technical and Progressive styles due to the virtuosity, complexity or sheer speed, that are then interspersed with gloriously catchy radio-friendly moments, spiced with a few harsh death vocals, augmented by occasional riffs that remind you a little of At The Gates and many other things besides. You really just have to hear it to understand it.

The intro to ‘Skies’ sounds almost like Animals As Leaders, Scale The Summit or the post-millennial King Crimson works. There are moments on ‘Mist’ that briefly sound almost like pop-punk for a few seconds and there are heavy pounding metallic sections on tracks like ‘Drumhead Trial,’ ‘A Life Embossed’ and ‘Yellow Teeth.’ Its not just like they just sit around and pilfer other band’s styles however, Protest The Hero have a very unique and clearly recognizable style of their own. Its just difficult to describe succinctly and without comparisons.

With this album, as with the previous one, the band have concentrated hard on songwriting and making things more ‘instant’ and easily-digestible, without compromising anything in terms of virtuosity or heaviness. This record is a distillation and continuation of everything that has come before, with new and exciting approaches to the core Protest The Hero style and it does a great job of grabbing your attention right from the get-go. They never betray who they are, they just somehow manage to write new, memorable, stand-out songs in that same great style. It’s a testament to the skill and talent of the band that they can do something so stylistically identifiable without becoming stale or repeating themselves.

On top of that more ‘instant’ feel, the album still manages to be a massive grower that really rewards repeat listening. Not that repeat listening is a chore, I can scarcely help myself from listening to it twice in a row at times. The music, performance and vocal deliveries on this album are frequently absolutely captivating. (The sections containing the following phrases are particularly memorable to me: “And if the sun burst above at the end of the world I don’t think I would give a damn,” “Cough, gasp and splutter,” “A White Straight Male with two blue eyes,” “When you should look up the facts,” “Before the writing could be written, before the writing could be read” and “And your obligatory contribution to the community”).

Some fans preferred the more abstract and conceptual lyrics that the band displayed on 2008’s Fortress album, but I absolutely love their more personal or observational side as well. They handle both styles really well in my opinion. The band have a knack for phrasing things uniquely and avoiding the same old clichés that everybody else uses. The lyrics to “Underbite” for example are incredibly entertaining, dealing with bands who do the whole rockstar-persona schtick. The lyrics to “Mist” are a tribute to the band’s homeland which almost make me want to be Canadian and “Tilting Against Windmills” deals with prejudice and bigotry in an interesting way.

Overall; Volition is yet another phenomenal record from the band with thousands of hidden depths and magical subtleties. The more you listen to it the more it will give you. It is strong on every level and there are no weak tracks. It is an absolutely excellent addition to the band’s discography and there are some absolute gems to be found on it. I recommend this album wholeheartedly to existing fans and suggest anyone curious about the band should give it a shot as well. If you do try it and end up liking this album be sure to pick up the rest of the band’s exceptionally consistent and high quality studio output too.

**Oh, and if you found this review by search engine, when you discover it again on Amazon it is me posting it. It hasn’t been copied and pasted off here by a stranger, I post my reviews on Amazon as ‘Gentlegiantprog “Kingcrimsonprog.”’ So please don’t unhelpful-vote it because you thought it was stolen from me.**

PROTEST THE HERO Fortress

Album · 2008 · Melodic Metalcore
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Kingcrimsonprog
Fortress is the second full-length studio album by the unique Canadian band Protest The Hero. It was released in early 2008 and produced by Juice Butty (Alexisonfire, City & Colour, Kobra And The Lotus). It is generally regarded as the band’s heaviest album to date, and featured the breakthrough singles “Bloodmeat” “Sequoia Throne” and “Palms Read.”

Mixing a few dozen strains of Progressive Metal and Mathcore, with occasional Melodic Death Metal riffs, the band have developed their own instantly recognizable sound. The band dart rapidly between different ideas and styles and cover an astounding amount of ground in a single song, without ever sounding like they are just being wacky for the sake of it. The standard of musicianship is absolutely amazing, and the band’s talent is unquestionable.

This album sees the band at their most savage, their most technical and their most esoteric. The lyrical content is less personal and focuses on the concept of Goddess Worship. The music is less poppy and the vocals feature a lot more growls and screams.

Highlights include the brilliant and varied “Bone Marrow” which starts off Eastern Tinged, has sort of symphonic flourishes low in the mix but bursts into a huge melodic chorus and almost Reggae sounding breakdown, as well as “Limb From Limb” which contains an interesting out of character Synth solo, and the the very catchy and memorable “Wretch.”

There are so many great little touches that every song is interesting to listen to over and over again to get to grips with all the different ideas. There are so many excellent vocal patterns, interesting drum patterns, amazing little guitar and bass runs and interesting lyrics scattered through every single song that it can take numerous listens to realize just how great any one song is… so full with great parts are they that a quarter of the parts from a single song here contains enough standout moments to fill about four songs by a normal band.

Some highlights include the part behind the lyric “It’s a neighbour saving face by saying grace today for yesterday’s beahviour,” “Growing fat on the throne where he sat like a stone, a man who has never known no hunger or shown no mercy,” “Do not beg before me, I will not heed your appeals, with your final words be grateful you died by Irish steel” and “Hell-bent on heaven.” Its little moments like that, that will have you coming back to the album time and again. The album is absolutely chocked full of such memorable moments.

Every Protest The Hero album is of the highest quality, so if you enjoy Fortress make sure to pick up the rest of their fantastic catalogue, they are one of the most consistent and consistently interesting bands going at the moment. Fortress is probably the band’s most heavy and aggressive outing, so it might be a good place to start if you want to hear that side of the band’s style represented more often.

PROTEST THE HERO Kezia

Album · 2005 · Melodic Metalcore
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Kingcrimsonprog
Kezia is the debut full-length studio album by the Canadian band Protest The Hero. It was released in 2005 on Underground Operations. The record is a concept album which tells the story of a woman called Kezia’s death from three different perspectives on one level, but serves as a political statement or social commentary on another level.

The band have been described as many different things, such as Mathcore, Metalcore and Progressive Metal. They certainly mix elements of all three. It may sound a little clichéd, but its almost like a band playing a medley of different sections from dozens of different songs by all sorts of artists, like At The Gates, Children Of Bodom, Megadeth, Iron Maiden, Dream Theater, Sikth, Dillenger Escape Plan, Gallows, Parkway Drive, Coheed & Cambria, Fair To Midland, Funeral For A Friend and Panic At The Disco all at once. There’s even a brief moment that calls Queensryche to mind. Its not they they specifically rip off any one of the individual artists mentioned, but just that they try so many things there’ll be bits here and there that’s a bit reminiscent of someone else.

It’s a very eclectic mix of influences. They can sometimes switch from one to another at the drop of a hat, and some of the songs are filled with so many different parts in different styles that it could almost be viewed as overwhelming. Rather than sounding muddled, confused, or cheesy, they somehow manage to pull off this mixture with an absolute flair and perfection. The song structures seem as though they should be obnoxiously bizzare but somehow they mysteriously manage to feel natural. Initially the sheer scale of the diversity and virtuosity may feel pretentious or ostentatious, but upon numerous repeat listens I’ve definitely come to believe that there isn’t anything cynical at work here. It feels like a labour of love and not merely an exercise in wackiness.

There’s just such a brilliant spark of creativity, every single section in this gigantic puzzle of a record is brilliant in and of itself, and each one perfectly compliments the next, and indeed the next few along. Every song is a well thought out and surprising journey that flutters between styles, tempos, time-sigs and vocal styles in a way that somehow flows smoothly. There’s no too-cheesy ballads or momentum-breaking intros to skip either. There aren’t any out-of-place comedy vocals and nothing to take you out of the listening experience.

Its difficult to choose highlights because every track is packed with countless memorable riffs, fun drum beats, inventive lyrics and sing-along vocal lines. If I had to choose a favourite however, it would probably be ‘Heretics & Killers.’

Overall; I highly recommend Kezia. It’s a super-technical yet super-melodic mixture of impressive virtuosity and catchy hooks with enough talent and interesting parts to fill up ten albums by less brilliant bands. It really rewards repeat listening and every spin will uncover a new little gem you never noticed before. If you have even the slightest interest in the band this is an absolute must-have.

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