Cancer Bats – Bears, Mayors, Scraps & Bones (2010)

Album Review

Toronto-based punk-metal band Cancer Bats’ third album on as many labels retains all the aggression and rage of its two predecessors. Their sludgy sound is hard to characterize — it’s not as raucous and raw as punk, but it lacks the sometimes inhuman precision of death metal or thrash. The vocals are a harsh scream, occasionally supported by clean counterpoints, but “harmony” is a concept with which Cancer Bats are apparently unfamiliar. They’re also not big on showy displays of technical virtuosity; these songs are built from riffs guaranteed to get crowds riled and shouting along, but the guitar solos are short and to the point, as they were with bands like the MC5 or the New York Dolls. They throw in a few variations on their basic formula without ever becoming progressive or “experimental”; the sidewinding riff of “Snake Mountain” and the slow-burning stoner rock of “Raised Right” are clearly the product of one band with one… Read more on

About the Band

Proving that loud, gritty, and ranting punk rock is still alive and thrashing in Canada, Toronto’s Cancer Bats were founded in the spring of 2004 by singer Liam Cormier and guitarist Scott Middleton. Cormier and Middleton had worked together before in a metal band called At the Mercy of Inspiration, and were looking to launch a new project that would take their music in a harder but more elemental direction. Teaming with bassist Andrew McCracken and drummer… Read more on


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