Van Canto

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Van Canto
Van Canto.jpg
van Canto performing at the 2008 Wacken Open Air. From left to right: Inga, Dennis and Stefan. Partially seen behind Inga are drummer Bastian and "bass" vocalist Ingo. Ross is not shown.
Background information
Origin Germany
Genres A cappella, power metal
Years active 2006–present
Labels GUN Records / Sony BMG, Napalm Records
Associated acts In Legend, Heavatar
Website www.vancanto.de
Members Dennis Schunke
Inga Scharf
Stefan Schmidt
Ross Thompson
Ingo Sterzinger
Bastian Emig
Past members Dennis Strillinger

Van Canto (sometimes stylized as van Canto) is a German a cappella metal band, founded in 2006 and composed of five singers and a drummer. Although the group is often classified as an a cappella ensemble, they use real drums in their music, instead of vocal percussion or beatboxing.

Van Canto play a cappella with classic heavy, power and symphonic metal influence, creating what they call "hero metal a cappella". While only two of the five singers perform the lead vocals, the other three instead use their voices to imitate the guitars and the bass, with the help of amplifiers, in an attempt to sound closer to the original instruments.

History[edit]

As soon as the band was founded, its debut album, A Storm to Come, was released through General Schallplatten. It features seven original tracks, as well as cover versions of Metallica's "Battery" and "Stora Rövardansen" from the movie Ronja Rövardotter. Additionally, videos were shot for the tracks "The Mission", "Battery", and "Rain".[1][unreliable source?] On 30 September 2007, they announced a new drummer, Bastian Emig,[1] who replaced Dennis Strillinger's position in the band. In December 2007, Van Canto signed a worldwide record deal with Gun Records/Sony BMG. Also in December, the band were announced as part of the line up of the Wacken 2008 festival.[1] The band also announced that their second album, titled "Hero", was in the progress of being recorded.[1] Hero ended up being released on 26 September 2008, with producer Charlie Bauerfeind.[1]

Van Canto performed a South American promotional tour between 23 June and 2 July 2008. The live performances took place primarily in Brazil,[1] which is the homeland of Ingo Sterzinger.[2] Soon after, the band arrived in Germany to perform live at Wacken 2008. A new song, "Speed of Light", was released as a digital single on 8 August 2008. A music video was shot for the song as well.

As of late 2009, Van Canto was recording their third studio album in Twilight Hall Studios, with Bauerfeind and via Napalm Records.[3] The album was due to contain around 11 tracks, fewer covers than Hero and a couple of bonus tracks. It was released worldwide in early 2010, which happened alongside the worldwide release of their previous two albums.[3] The album was announced at Nuclear Blast official website as Tribe of Force. The tracklisting features 13 tracks, two of them being covers ("Master of Puppets" by Metallica and "Rebellion" by Grave Digger), and three of them featuring guest artists: Victor Smolski (from Rage) guest appears in "One to Ten", Tony Kakko (from Sonata Arctica) guest appears on "Hearted" and Chris Boltendahl (from Grave Digger) guest appears in "Rebellion".[4]

Recently, Van Canto announced in their official website that they would perform guest vocals in the next albums by bands Blind Guardian and Grave Digger (At the Edge of Time and untitled, respectively). They also appeared on the Tarja Turunen album What Lies Beneath (on the track "Anteroom of Death").[5]

On 23 August 2010 their entire library was removed from popular music streaming service Spotify, but it reappeared on 8 September 2010. On 2 September 2011 their library was removed again but as of 27 September 2013 their library was once again put back up on the streaming service.

On 21 September 2010 it was announced that they had teamed up with the popular MMORPG Runes of Magic to create a music video based around the game for and with the game.

On 17 February 2011, it was announced on the official Van Canto website that the band was entering the studio and suspending touring until June in order to create a new album.

The band's fourth album Break the Silence was released on 22 September 2011.[5]

Their fifth album, "Dawn of the Brave", was released in February 2014.[6] It contains 9 own compositions and 4 cover versions:[7] "Paranoid" by Black Sabbath, "The Final Countdown" by Europe, "Holding out for a Hero" by Bonnie Tyler, and "Into the West" by Annie Lennox from the soundtrack for the motion picture Lord of the Rings: Return of the King.

Band members[edit]

Current members[edit]

  • Dennis "Sly" Schunke – lead vocals (2006–present)
  • Inga Scharf – lead vocals (2006–present)
  • Ross Thompson – higher guitar vocals (2006–present)
  • Stefan Schmidt – lower guitar vocals, solo guitar vocals (2006–present)
  • Ingo "Ike" Sterzinger – bass vocals (2006–present)
  • Bastian Emig – drums (2007–present)

Past members[edit]

  • Dennis Strillinger – drums (2006–2007)

Discography[edit]

Hero (2008)[edit]

Hero
Studio album by van Canto
Released 14 October 2008 (Gun Records)[8]
10 April 2010 (Napalm Records)[9]
Genre Heavy metal, a cappella
Length 48:34
Label GUN
Producer Charlie Bauerfeind[10]
van Canto chronology
A Storm to Come
(2006)
Hero
(2008)
Tribe of Force
(2010)
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating

Hero is the second album by the band and was released on 14 October 2008 on Sony BMG Germany's GUN records. It was the first album with Bastian Emig on drums. In contrast to A Storm to Come, Hero contains more cover songs[9] performed a capella, with only five songs being original compositions. "Speed of Light" and the Nightwish cover "Wishmaster" were released as singles with music videos to promote the album. The 2010 re-release featured Angra cover "Carry On".[9]

Track listing[8][edit]

Disc: 1[edit]
No. Title Length
1. "Speed of Light"    
2. "Kings of Metal (Manowar cover)"   3:41
3. "Pathfinder"   4:48
4. "Wishmaster (Nightwish cover)"   4:22
5. "The Bard's Song (Blind Guardian cover)"   3:08
6. "Quest for Roar"   3:32
7. "Stormbringer (Deep Purple cover)"   3:51
8. "Take to the Sky (Featuring Hansi Kürsch of Blind Guardian)"   4:14
9. "Fear of the Dark (Iron Maiden cover)"   7:09
10. "Hero"   5:18
11. "Carry On (Angra cover)" (2010 re-release) 5:09
Disc: 2 (Bonus DVD)[edit]
  1. The Mission
  2. Battery
  3. Battery (Making Of)
  4. Speed of Light
  5. Speed of Light (Making of)
  6. Rain
  7. Brazil
  8. Studio
  9. Track by Track
  10. Gallery

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f "News at Van Canto official site". 
  2. ^ "Entrevista com Stefan (Van Canto)". Retrieved 2008-05-22. [dead link]
  3. ^ a b "New Album, New Label". Van Canto's official blog. 2009-10-27. Retrieved 2009-10-29. [dead link]
  4. ^ Tribe of force at Nuclear Blast's website
  5. ^ a b News at the band's official site
  6. ^ Official website
  7. ^ "Van Canto Discography". Van Canto's official website. 2013-11-25. Retrieved 2013-12-06. 
  8. ^ a b Hero at AllMusic. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  9. ^ a b c Hero (2010 re-release) at AllMusic. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  10. ^ Hero (credits) at AllMusic. Retrieved 25 March 2013.

External links[edit]