In­er­tia still mov­ing 20 years in

The Toronto metal pi­o­neers tell us why they’re in­debted to In­er­tia En­ter­tain­ment

NOW Magazine - - FRONT PAGE - By CARLA GIL­LIS car­lag@now­toronto.com | @car­lag­illis

SAC­RI­FICE with MACABRE, GOATWHORE and PANZ­ER­FAUST as part of IN­ER­TIA EN­TER­TAIN­MENT’S 20TH AN­NIVER­SARY at the Opera House ( 735 Queen East), S atur­day ( Fe­bru­ary 27), 8 pm. $ 20. ro­tate. com, tick­et­fly. com. When the only ded­i­cated heavy mu­sic con­cert pro­mo­tion com­pany in town turns 20, it makes sense that Toronto’s top head­bang­ing mu­sic- mak­ers would clam­our to take part in ap­pre­ci­a­tion.

But there’s an­other rea­son be­hind Sac­ri­fice’s head­lin­ing spot at In­er­tia En­ter­tain­ment’s an­niver­sary show.

“We wouldn’t even be play­ing again if it weren’t for Noel [ Pe­ters] from In­er­tia,” says vo­cal­ist/ gui­tarist Rob Urbi nati over the phone from his Toronto home. “He got the band back to­gether in 2006 for a one- off. And af­ter it was over, we didn’t want to stop.

“There was no one else who would’ve done that for us. We feel in­debted to him.”

That re­union show, which saw the orig­i­nal lineup of Toronto’s pi­o­neer­ing thrash band re­con­vene for the first time in way over a decade, led to the mak­ing of Sac­ri­fice’s fifth al­bum, 2009’ s The Ones I Con­demn, which earned ac­claim from fans and crit­ics alike. How’d they pull off some­thing so good af­ter so much time away?

“We felt a mas­sive cre­ative jolt when we got back to­gether,” Urbinati ex­plains, ac­knowl­edg­ing that due to the mu­sic’s de­mand­ing com­plex­ity and phys­i­cal­ity, it took some time to re- find their groove. “And we didn’t feel the need to change. If any­thing, with that al­bum we al­most felt a need to regress back to the stuff we used to lis­ten to. To that ag­gres­sion. To that fe­roc­ity of early thrash metal or what­ever you want to call it.”

An­other rea­son for cel­e­bra­tion? Satur­day’s show will be their first in Toronto in seven years. With mem­bers liv­ing in Toronto, Van­cou­ver and Detroit, reg­u­lar re­hearsals just aren’t in the cards.

Urbinati ad­mits there’s not a whole lot else go­ing on with Sac­ri­fice at the mo­ment: “We keep one foot in the mu­sic world but have fam­i­lies and jobs. Pretty bor­ing lives, hon­estly.” He says they’ll head into the stu­dio only if they write a bunch of songs that live up to their own ex­pec­ta­tions.

“Un­til we get to that point, I don’t think we will. If it hap­pens, it hap­pens. If not, we’ll still have re­leased five de­cent al­bums.”

Be­sides, he says, they were never a band with blue- sky ca­reer goals.

“When we started [ in 1983], this mu­sic was so ex­treme. We were what you’d con­sider the most hard, death, grind band to­day. Be­cause of the mu­sic we played, our sights weren’t that high. Bands like Me­tal­lica and Slayer, no­body ever imag­ined they’d be where they are to­day. You couldn’t fathom that.

“Some bands as they get older still have the fire to make it. We just don’t,” Urbinati laughs. “But we still love do­ing this and chal­leng­ing our­selves. It’s got noth­ing to do with money. If you’re in this for money, thrash metal isn’t the way to go.”

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