Now You Know: Seer

Saturday, 23rd January 2016

Formation: 2014
Location: Vancouver, BC
Style: Venerable, classic doom, with variety-a-plenty
Personnel: Bronson Lee Norton (vocals); Kyle Tavares (guitar, vocals); Josh Campbell (bass); Madison Norton (drums)
Latest release: Vol. 1 & 2 (Art of Propaganda)

The first song on Seer’s Vol.1 & 2 is titled “Glimmervoid.” An alternate universe perhaps? Or, a credo for the band to use when requesting listeners to enter into a different state of mind? Guitarist Kyle Tavares explains: “The ‘Glimmervoid’ is a very important concept within our narrative. We discovered recently it’s very similar to the Buddhist concept of ‘Sunyata,’ which (as I understand it) is the realization of emptiness that frees one from unsatisfactoriness and leads to enlightenment. This is essentially what our convoy experiences when they breach the Glimmervoid realm. Ultimately it guides them in their pilgrimage. They become the hive mind, the ‘Cult of the Void.’ A quick google search will lead one to conclude we borrowed the name from Magic: The Gathering. This is also true.”

Prior to establishing the concept of “Glimmervoid,” Seer’s lineup and productivity came fast. Formed in November of 2014, the band practiced together a total of three times prior to the recording of Vol. 1. To further add intrigue to the proceedings, many of Seer’s members were holed-up in death and thrash bands. Instead of sacking the songs altogether, Seer dropped the tempo, and went doom. “Combining that with Bronson’s vocal range, we felt the new project would be the antithesis of our previous band, which had left a bad taste in our mouths,” says Tavares. “Either that or the doom was calling.”

The doom call was also headed by emerging German label of Art of Propaganda, who responded to one of the band’s email submissions. The label promptly packaged the band’s two EPs for release in January. As listeners will find, Seer’s brand of doom is far from typical. Regularly oscillating between the storied, sludgy terrain of Sabbath, all the way to marvelous atmospheric jaunts, the versatility of Seer is something that will serve them well down the line, especially when combined with the vocals of Norton.

“We are certainly aware of the variances in our sound, but I don’t think we go into writing trying to mix things up as much as possible. It’s just the way it comes out. We all listen to a lot of different kinds of music, so it seems natural that our output is a somewhat mixed bag. The trick is maintaining some cohesiveness.

“Bronson is a key component of our sound. Not many singers can do it all like he can. We met in high school, and briefly played in a band together after graduation. A few years ago he got back in touch and joined our previous band. He was pushed into a mostly aggressive style of vocals with that group, so for Seer we wanted to showcase his clean singing abilities in addition to the nasty stuff he does so well.”

Seer already has plans for a proper full length, which should be recorded this winter. Combined with some live shows in support of Vol. 1 & 2, and it should be a busy first-half of 2016 for the band.

“The recording process may take a few months but we’re hoping to have the full length out before the year is through. I think the bulk of the sound is the product of mixing Vol. 1’s atmospherics and structure with Vol. 2’s heaviness and experimental aspects. We’ll also be expanding on our folk/acoustic side we played with a little on Vol. 2.”

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