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Warrior Down

Whoop Szo

CD  |  Alternative  |  06 Dec 2019

Warrior Down | CD


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Whoop Szo Warrior Down CD




London, Ontario’s WHOOP-Szo is a blazing force of DIY rock. Fronted by Anishinaabe- Canadian community leader Adam Sturgeon, the band has spent nearly a decade carving out a reputation for themselves, rising on the strength of their musicianship, songwriting, and tireless touring.

“Who is that?” This is the first question you’ll have when you see the arresting portrait on the cover of WHOOP-Szo’s latest album, ‘Warrior Down’. “That’s my grandfather,” Adam Sturgeon explains. “Military man and residential school survivor,” he adds, letting that description sit before discussing what it must have been like for the Indigenous men of his grandfather’s generation to be summoned to the defense of their oppressors.

Sturgeon’s experiences as an Anishinaabe-Canadian are woven into the songs on ‘Warrior Down’. We learn more about his grandfather in album closer “Cut Your Hair”; a fragile acoustic reflection on his grandfather’s experience in residential school, and the ongoing resonance of that familial trauma.

Structurally fluid and immense in emotional scope, ‘Warrior Down’ offers a series of dichotomies — pummeling percussion and sparkling gentleness, thrashing distortion and acoustic levity — that give it the dynamic of a creation story. Elemental forces compete and collide even as they seek equilibrium. The driving optimism of “Amaruq” gives way to the dissonant thud of “Gerry.” The forceful chant of “Long-Braided Hair” becomes the serene unison of “2CB.” The sparse and sardonic “6.1 – 6.2” leads to the foreboding and ruthlessly self- examining “Oda Man.” Sonically and thematically, Warrior Down depicts the unfolding of a cultural big bang, in which eruptions of truth activate a succession of healthy confrontations.

Thunderous and ground-breaking, harmonious and generative, on ‘Warrior Down’, WHOOP-Szo create an emotional weather-storm that dances conscientiously between anger and discipline, frustration, and hope for a concise, focused 35 minute examination of injustice, history, cultural reclamation, and Indigenous solidarity. Heavy and meditative, employing caustic humour, thick sludgy guitars, powerful drumming, and vocals that range from sweet to unhinged, WHOOP-Szo address the poisonous legacies of colonialism and effect positive change in the wider music and arts community.

On ‘Warrior Down’, the strength of WHOOP-Szo’s music is made available to anyone whose world has been shocked by new truth; who feels like their spirit is scrambling in pursuit of balance; who realizes it is a fight to try and lead with love, and tries.


Title: Warrior Down

Format: CD

Release Date: 06 Dec 2019

Artist: Whoop Szo

Sku: 2447419

Catalogue No: CD-YC-041

Category: Alternative