Roxanne Gordey & Denver Whipple of EDGE OF ATTACK: Power vocals, power bass and power metal from Canada's Great White North!

Hello, ladies and welcome to Metal Maidens! I thank you both for your patience in getting this interview together, as it seemed to be one delay after another on our end. My apologies for the wait.
Denver: "No worries at all. It was worth the wait!"

Roxanne, you are the amazing voice behind EDGE OF ATTACK and Denver you are an absolute monster on the bass, my friend. I know, the band has been around for around six years or so, but there have been some line-up changes along the way. When did the two of you join the band and how did that come about?
Denver: "I joined the band about a year ago now. As you know Jurekk is my brother. We live together and our basement is where band practice occurs. They were having problems with their previous bass player attending practices regularly, so I usually filled in, so much in fact that I felt like I was already a part of the band. We all knew I'd join eventually and it was just a matter of 'when'. The former bass player quit, so I got the job!"
Roxanne: "I found myself involved with the project, when Jurekk called me one day, because he needed guest vocals for a new song he had written. It was spur of the moment, but something seemed to click. Jurekk asked me the next day to come on full time as a singer. He felt the band was heading in a new direction and that a change in vocals was just what they needed."

Please tell us about the rest of the band, if you will?
Denver: "Everyone is actually so different from one another. For example, I'm a little horror fiend. Any time I'm not busy with band stuff, you can find me watching b-list movies, reading the latest from Guillermo del Toro or crying about the perfection that was Vincent Price. Roxanne Gordey (vocals), one of my closest friends, spends a lot of time playing video games and she is a big part of the MtG community in town here. My brother Jurekk Whipple (lead guitar/vocals) knows everything there is to know about cars, guns and of course guitars. Dallas Dyck (rhythm guitar) is one of the nicest people I know and always putting others before himself. I spend a lot of time with him. We've ran a few too many red lights together though. And then there's Trevor Swain (drums), the other half of the rhythm team. Seriously, he's one of the best people I know and the only other member of the band, that enjoys beer as much as I do!"

I must admit the very first time I had heard of the band was, when I saw the video for "Forever". I couldn't help thinking "Holy shit, these guys all look like they are still in high school and they are just a killer band for being so young". Do you get that a lot?
Roxanne: "Well thanks! Although, I feel like being exceptionally young in the music industry isn't something you're often praised for. Many musicians have the advantage of making an impact before they can legally enter a bar and so it's partly expected. If in twenty years I hear, "Holy shit, you're all wrinkled and saggy, but you're still a killer band for being so old", then I'll definitely feel like I've accomplished something."

Denver, you and Jurekk are siblings and most siblings I know canft even be in the same room for long periods of time, let alone be in a band together. How do the two of you make it work?
Denver: "Honestly, I don't even think of Jurekk as a brother in the traditional sense, because of the typical 'sibling rivalry' that has become so common. My brother has been my best friend my entire life. I can't think of a single moment, that I've ever felt any negativity toward him so working together with him in this band is extremely important to me, especially considering that I've been there to witness how hard he has worked for this. I'm just really happy, that I can be there for him and vice versa."

The band hails from Alberta in Canada. Can you tell us a little about your hometown?
Roxanne: "Grande Prairie is a cold wasteland known for its abundance of fossil fuels and diesel engines. It doesn't inspire much other than excessive drinking and creative past times. We get along just fine of course. There's plenty of jobs and the quality of life is reasonably high, but there isn't much to behold."

What is the metal scene like in Alberta and are there any favorite clubs you enjoy playing in?
Denver: "Since I've been in the band I've only played in Alberta a total of four times; BJ's Q Club in Grande Prairie, The New Black in Calgary, The Studio in Edmonton and Moose Hall in Lethbridge. Selecting a favorite at this point would be quite difficult, as I feel that I haven't come across the best of the best yet. As far as the scene here, it is actually pretty good. Therefs so much variety, which keeps things interesting. Canada has always had a great metal scene, just never had much exposure for some reason."

It is very rare and refreshing to me to see a band that has the talent to just bring it all: crushing guitars and drums, beautiful yet powerful vocals, very cool and unique harmonies and well written memorable songs, that stick in your head all day long. That is pure magic! So what is your secret or will you have to kill me, if you tell (lol)?
Denver: "Hahaha - well, thank you! And it isn't much of a secret. We just really take our time with the writing process. We don't rush anything and we honestly go through each song several times to make changes where we see fit, until we're satisfied."


Your new CD, which I guess you would call a re-release of your original CD, just came out a few weeks ago and is taking the metal community by the throat, so I guess congratulations are in order to all of you for the success of the CD and for making an instant classic in my book. How does this new CD differ from your original one and are you surprised by how well it has been received by fans and media alike?
Roxanne: "The new version of the album is like a reincarnation of its former self. We took the entire thing and re-recorded it. There was room for improvement and we took all that we could. Then we sent it to be remixed and mastered at ZED Studios. In our downtime waiting for the initial release, we had written two new songs that made it onto the album, "In Hell," and "In the Night." After a lot of consideration, we ultimately decided to remove the track "Crimson Rain"."

I have heard the band referred to as thrash, symphonic and power metal or a combination of all of those genres. How would you describe the sound of this band to potential new fans?
Denver: "I've found that the easiest way to put it would be modern power metal. It is pretty straight forward and the fans seem to get it. We do have speedy riffs and some symphonic overtones, but for the most part we are power metal."

Does everyone in the band have a say in writing the songs? And being the singer, Roxanne, do you write all the lyrics?
Roxanne: "Songwriting is a collaborative process to a degree. Jurekk writes a good number of songs and sometimes others will come forward with a song, that we'll use. Often, the foundation of the song will be written and someone else will add parts. As for the lyrics, much of the songwriting for the first incarnation of the album was already underway, when I joined the band. I did write the lyrics for "In Hell" and I am writing more for the new material we are currently working on."

Your songs are so powerful, both musically and lyrically and I love the whole concept and theme of this band. The songs seem very socially conscious and talk about retribution from mother earth for the things we have done. I guess, it's hard to describe but is there like a medieval or viking kind of logic behind this CD or am I way off and it's just my crazy interpretation?
Denver: "That is a very interesting interpretation! Which is perfect and is exactly what we are aiming for - people to interpret things for themselves. When we write, we generally start with a lyrical theme and work from there. We tend to steer away from really promoting certain ideas or stories throughout our music, because that can restrict audiences."

There is also the underlying theme of "Fighting Back", which I love. Does that attitude in your music reflect the band's way of dealing with things?
Roxanne: "It's possible. We aren't passive people, by any means. I think, we've all dealt with a degree of struggle in our lives and that comes through in our music. Characteristically, we don't allow people to take advantage of us nor do we allow others to fight our own battles."

You have a brand new tune on this CD, called "In Hell", which is just a killer tune and the accompanying video is very well done also. Where did the concept for the video come from and can you tell us what the song is about?
Roxanne: "The concept for the video was developed by the filmmaker, Karen Michelle Meola. When we got in touch with her about doing the video, she immediately had tons of ideas for where to take it. Being artists ourselves, we thought it best that she have freedom of expression and we allowed her to grow the concept into what it is now. As for the song itself, it doesn't have a concrete meaning, but is more or less a vague expression of the internal war we all wage."

The song "Crimson Rain" (which I love, by the way) was not included on this CD. Was there a reason or did it just kind of happen?
Denver: "After much consideration, we decided as a group that it would be best not to include it in the release of the album. There wasn't a major reason, we just knew we had to cut a track and we decided that track would be gCrimson Rainh."

Some of my other favorites are "Edge of Attack", "Set the world Aflame" and "Rise Above", just to name a few. Do either of you have any personal favorites?
Denver: "This has always been the most difficult question for me to answer. I'd have to say it is a toss up between "Demon Of The Northern Sea" or "Take Me Alive", because I feel that both of those songs really showcase what we are all about. I love the groove in "Demon" and it is extremely fun to play live and with "Take Me Alive", there is just so much punch behind it. They are two really powerful songs."


Roxanne, I think your voice is so powerful and hauntingly beautiful as well. At what age did you start singing and were you professionally trained?
Roxanne: "I'm sure I was singing, as soon as I was speaking. There's more home footage of me warbling to the radio than I can recall. I didn't take it on as a pursuit until I was about fourteen, but that just entailed getting involved with local theater productions and joining a cover band. When I joined EDGE OF ATTACK I took a few casual lessons from a friend, but I haven't had the opportunity to enroll in any kind of program or take any extensive training.h Who are some singers that you have drawn inspiration from over the years? Roxanne: gWhen I think back, they were rock singers, classical singers, even some pop singers. One thing they had in common is, that they were always men. There was always something aggressive and powerful about their voices that I appreciated and wanted to replicate. It came much more naturally than trying to sing along to Celine Dion. Some of my favorite vocalists were Freddie Mercury and Steve Perry, though some of my favorites now are Tony Kakko and Roy Khan."

Do you take any special precautions with your voice on the day of a show?
Roxanne: "Aside from normal precautions that singers take, nothing too special. I try my best not to talk or shout excessively and I limit my beverages to water for a few hours before. I don't drink any alcohol at all (until afterwards!)."

Ok, Denver, you didn't think I was going to let you off the hook, did you? How long have you been playing the bass and are there any musicians, who have inspired you?
Denver: "Haha, of course not! Well, I've been playing bass for around two years now, not long at all. First time I picked up a bass was because of the intro of "Gutter Cat vs The Jets" by ALICE COOPER. The bassline in that intro is so groovy and I had nothing to do, so I taught myself from there. That being said, Dennis Dunaway is an obvious inspiration. Another at the top of my list would be Lemmy Kilmister of MOTORHEAD. I've always been a huge fan and every bass line on their self-titled album kills me (in a good way). Dave Ellefson of MEGADETH is another major inspiration, learning several MEGADETH tracks have been a huge help to me in regards to improving my skill."


What kind of bass and gear are you using right now?
Denver: "I'm currently using two ESP ltd f-series basses, (F-414 FM & F-155 DX), both with EMG pick ups. I'm also using a Traynor YBA -200 head, and a G.K. Neo Cab. I've recently started using a Boss ODB-3 pedal as well, which will be used on tour and in the recordings of our new material."

Either of you can take this one, if you like...........What is your opinion of women in the Metal scene today?
Roxanne: "There is a wide array of women in the scene. Attitudes and behavior vary so much from one to the next that the only consensus is that it's inappropriate to form an opinion of all of us as a group. There are some women that I admire greatly and some that I wouldn't emulate, but I don't really like to pass judgement, because everyone expresses themselves differently and for different reasons."

What bands would you love to do a tour with?
Denver: "There are bands that I'd love to tour with solely because of my admiration for them and then there are those that I'd love to tour with because they'd fit so well with us. ALICE COOPER, MOTORHEAD and MEGADETH are three examples of bands, that I'd love to tour with for personal reasons; EDGUY, AVANTASIA and KOBRA AND THE LOTUS are three examples of bands, that I believe to blend well with us, which would make for a great tour."
Roxanne: "I'd love to tour with a big power metal band like STRATOVARIUS, but on the other hand I'd also like to tour with smaller bands. Something like lesser known folk-metal bands like KORPIKLAANI."

As far as live shows go, what can fans expect to see from an EDGE OF ATTACK live show?
Denver: "High energy! We are constantly moving around, interacting with the audience and beating each other up with our headstocks!"

Will the band be touring extensively to support the new CD and will that tour be mostly in Canada or will you get a chance to play in the US and other countries as well?
Roxanne: "Ultimately, we'd love to tour as much as possible. We have aspirations reaching all the way to South America. For now, we are lining up a Canadian tour for this spring."

When the band has downtime what kinds of things do you all enjoy doing to unwind?
Roxanne: "The one thing we all have in common is that we're pretty laid back. A typical fun night for the band is usually us having drinks, playing games and belting out our favorite songs at the top of our lungs. I guess, music is in every part of our lives."

 Where can fans buy your CD or find out more about the band?
Denver : "Go to our website, official Facebook page or Twitter site (see link below)"

Well, ladies I could go on forever, as I think this band is just fascinating, but I think I have bored you enough. It has been my pleasure to chat with the two of you today and thank you for spending time with us at Metal Maidens. This band has it all and I am so very proud to be a fan of your music and on behalf of all of your fans, I just want to say thank you to the entire band for making such great music. I believe, there will be no stopping this band and we are all going to be hearing great music from EDGE OF ATTACK for many years to come. Horns up, brothers and sisters, Nick Rohm.
Denver: "Thanks for having us!"
Roxanne: "Yeah, thanks so much! It's been a pleasure!"

copyright: METAL MAIDENS
interview by: Nick Rohm, Metal Maidens 'zine / April 2013.

Check out EDGE OF ATTACK on You Tube:
"Forever" video

Visit their offical site at: www.edgeofattack.com
Twitter: twitter.com/EdgeofAttack#
Facebook: www.facebook.com/edgeofattackofficial