Music

Pop Explosion profile: Metal band Black Moor

'It was like I won some contest to play'

Black Moor members Evan Frizzle, far left, Eric Hanlin, and Brycen Gunn rocking The Marquee Ballroom on Thursday, the second night of Pop Explosion.
Black Moor members Evan Frizzle, left, Eric Hanlin and Brycen Gunn rocking The Marquee Ballroom on Thursday, the second night of Halifax Pop Explosion.   Megan Fraser

Black Moor’s lead vocalist Eric Hanlin walks on stage and grabs a beer offered by a fan in the audience. After a few sips, the guitar kicks in and the band is ready to play The Marquee Ballroom.

The Halifax metal band shared the stage Thursday, on Halifax Pop Explosion’s second night, with newcomers Geil, Halifax’s Scumgrief and Montreal’s Voivod.

Black Moor bassist Brycen Gunn says he was looking forward to opening for Voivod, whom the entire band agrees is an influence on their music.

“They’re probably one of, if not the biggest metal band to come out of Canada,” he says.

Lead vocalist Eric Hanlin says the beauty of Pop Explosion is getting to see bands you “wouldn’t normally see.”

“You can see all different styles,” he says. “You wander from place to place and see all kinds of people.”

Black Moor has played with other metal bands such as Protest the Hero and Cancer Bats. Among other gigs, they played the Maritime Metal and Hard Rock Festival in Windsor, N.S. last July.

Gunn and drummer Bobby Webb are the newest additions to the band; both joined in the spring of this year. For Gunn, it means being part of one of his “first favourite local bands.”

“To me, it was like I won some contest to play,” he says. “It was like, ‘Oh put your name in to play a set with Black Moor.’”

Webb, former drummer for Halifax metal band Orchid’s Curse, enjoys being able to play a different style than he’s used to.

“It was more contemporary versus old-school, like Black Moor is.”

Frizzle and drummer Bobby Webb on the main stage at The Marquee.
Frizzle and drummer Bobby Webb on the main stage at The Marquee.   Megan Fraser

The band’s heavy metal sound combined with explosive live shows creates Black Moor fans that Webb calls “some of the craziest people he’s ever met in his entire life.”

Gunn credits this to the Halifax metal scene, a tight-knit “brotherhood,” where most of the fans come from other bands who want to share the stage.

Black Moor has been around for about 11 years and has had a number of different members.

“Most of (the fans) have been coming out for forever, for as long as the band existed.”

Lead guitarist Evan Frizzle says Black Moor is working on new music, but the band just has to get it “physically and phonetically down.”

Black Moor’s fourth album, Brave to the Grave, was released in March. It can be purchased through Bandcamp, an online music store for independent artists.

Frizzle says newcomers Webb and Gunn will add something new to future albums.

“Basically, it’s like if you mixed two different stir-fries,” he says. “You have the same ingredients, but just different components and different amounts.”