Toronto punk band Cancer Bats will be releasing an EP with acoustic renditions of seven of their old songs. It’s called You’ll Never Break Us: Separation Sessions Vol. 1 and will be available digitally on December 16 via Bat Skull Records/New Damage Records. Two songs from it have been released so far, “Deathsmarch To A New Acoustic Beat” and “Bastards Waltz Recorded Live From TV,” which is officially a bonus track.
“While we are excited for fans to hear and enjoy these new renditions, the other goal for this project is to raise funds and awareness for the clean water crisis that still exists within Canada for many Indigenous communities” frontman Liam Cormier stated. All proceeds will be donated to Water First in efforts to help teach indigenous Canadian communities how to purify water.
“Deathsmarch To A New Acoustic Beat” is descriptively named, rearranging Cancer Bats’ 2008 classic “Deathsmarch” for acoustic guitar with a more laid back drum pattern changing the rhythm of the song. It plays up the southern metal feel their early records had with some twang and a gritty but less aggressive vocal performance from Cormier. Singer/songwriter Nick Sherman added some additional vocals as well. The switch to ‘a new acoustic beat’ doesn’t completely tame the tune, just recasts it with a different vibe.
“Bastards Waltz Recorded Live From TV” is much more stripped back than the original “Bastard’s Waltz,” originally from the same 2008 album, Hail Destroyer. Although only acoustic guitar, drums and vocals, Cormier keeps the singing loud and as punk as ever.
The rest of the EP is said to also have different rhythms, guitar parts and added vocal melodies to help fit the tracks in an acoustic setting. It was also partially created out of the struggles of COVID-19 quarantine separating the band members. Cormier commented on the experience, “After having our road dog existence of constant touring over the past 15 years halted due to the pandemic, and with all four band members now spread across Canada in separate cities, towns and Provinces, we haven’t been in the same room since March. While separated from each other, we thought what better time to re-examine and record new versions of 6 classic Bats tracks.”
You’ll Never Break Us: Separation Sessions Vol. 1 Track List:
1. “Deathsmarch To A New Acoustic Beat”
2. “Road Sick Sick Sick So Stay Home”
3. “Black Metal Bicycle My Blues Riffs Away”
4. “Darkness Lite”
5. “Bed Of Nails Dreams Of Tambourines”
6. “Lucifer’s Slightly Less Rocking Chair”
7. “Bastards Waltz Recorded Live From TV” (Bonus)