Growlers Choir: a choir of metal screamers with no worms
Pierre-Luc Senécal, Corinne Cardinal and Pascal Germain-Berardi, all three members of the Growlers Choir.
Revealed to the general public with its participation in the show America's Got Talent, the Growlers Choir continues its merry way and will be performing on October 27th with the classical choir Temps Fort.  ;
This is the second time that the two Montreal choirs will take the stage together, forming the choir Extrêmes Vocals, which held its first show in June 2021. < /p>
Subwaymet three members of the Growlers – Pascal Germain-Berardi, Pierre-Luc Senécal and Corinne Cardinal – in a small apartment in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, where one of the choristers lives.
The growler, which could be translated as throat singing, is a type of voice that is mainly expected in death metal, doom metal , black metal and thrash metal, although it is also present in other musical subgenres of metal.
An almost unique case
Noting that this kind of proposal was almost non-existent, Pierre-Luc Senécal had the idea of creating a choir of metal singers in 2016. Almost non-existent, because after some research , the founder, main composer and bandleader of Growlers Choir discovers that metal choirs exist in Indonesia and Israel, but it seems that this is not the case in North America.
“It was a long process of three years to find a piece that was interesting to do, find a text, find people who were interested, find the money to do this project and find an opportunity to present it in a show” , he recalls.
Finally, it was in May 2019 that the Growlers Choir made its first show in front of an audience, with 18 singers. The opportunities have multiplied since then, including recently at the Emerging Music Festival in Abitibi-Témiscamingue, last September.
The Growlers Choir during the Extrêmes Vocals show in June 2021. Photo: Courtesy, Elias Touil
< p>For the concert on October 27 at the Sacré-Coeur-de-Jésus church, a total of 37 choristers will be gathered to offer above all original compositions, creations delivered a cappella signed by Pierre -Luc Senécal and Pascal Germain-Berardi, founder and artistic director of Temps Fort as well as musical director of the show which will be presented at the end of the month.
“The idea is to demonstrate the whole spectrum expressive of the voice, explains Pascal Germain-Berardi. At one extreme, we have the classical voices, at the other extreme, we have the voices growles. »
If he does not wish to reveal too much about this show, preferring to keep surprises, he specifies that the choristers will wander among the spectators. An approach he was already considering doing during the June 2021 concert, but which had not been possible due to the pandemic.
The American Adventure
Backing vocalist in Growlers Choir, Corinne Cardinal also made herself known to the general public during her appearance on the show Everyone talks about it,in 2020. The singer of the group Valfreya – which gives in the epic black death metal – was there promoting the FestEvil, an event highlighting women evolving on the metal scene.
These television appearances allow metal artists to broaden their audience and introduce a musical genre which, let's face it, remains in the shadows, at least in the media.
But, even if their appearance on America's Got Talent was a “beautiful trip» and an opportunity to get out of the usual scene in which metal evolves, the Growlers Choir did not wish to pursue the adventure, although three out of four juries voted in their favour.
“We were forced into certain things, that's why we decided not to continue,” says Corinne Cardinal.
Pierre-Luc Senécal admits that including the piece Toxic by Britney Spears in their repertoire was a way of coaxing the jury during the audition for America's Got Talent.
Indeed, if they sometimes do cover songs, that's not what motivates Pierre-Luc Senécal and Pascal Germain-Berardi. The two composers undeniably prefer to offer original works.
“Unless I want to give a humorous touch to one of our shows, I will not repeat Toxic in a Growlers Choir show, says Pierre-Luc Senécal. I have other things to show. »
Asked about their intention to record, he confirms that a Growlers Choir album should be released soon.