Billy Talent: Forgiveness I + II (Warner Music Canada): This week, the platinum-selling rock band released a new song, Forgiveness I + II, produced by Juno Award nominee (Producer of the Year) and Billy Talent guitarist Ian D’Sa in the group’s Toronto studio. The track is the first new original Billy Talent recording since 2016's highly successful Afraid of Heights album which featured the chart-topping title track.
The surprise release marks the beginning of what is expected to be a very active period for the band, and its label teases that there'll be "another exciting announcement" next week.
As the title hints, this actually feels like two tracks merged into one.
The first half is 3.45 of a typical BT sonic assault, with paint-stripping riffs and a thunderous groove, and singer Benjamin Kowalewicz's signature full-blooded howl. The second half is radically different in mood, with a psych/space rock vibe more Spiritualized than Slayer. There's even a sax solo in there, refreshing proof of the band's willingness to experiment. There's a philosophical slant to the lyrics: "Searching for the end, but the journey's the reason for existence."
This is the sound of a band at the height of its powers.
Billy Talent have sold nearly one million albums in Canada alone and nearly 3 million albums internationally. They have won seven Juno Awards (fron 23 nominations), including three nods for Afraid of Heights (Group of the Year, Rock Album of the Year, and Ian D'Sa for Producer of the Year).
In 2018 the group was honoured with a Legends of Live Special Achievement Award, presented by Canadian Music Week. Most recently, BT launched the Billy Talent Charity Trust to give to the organizations that the band believes in.
Publicity: Dave Stelling, Warner Music Canada