Holyarrow, an epic black metal band from Xiamen in East China’s Fujian province, recently announced a collaboration with the notable French black metal label Antiq Records. The news is the latest in a broader push to bring Chinese black metal music to the global stage.
According to the band’s profile page on the Chinese streaming platform NetEase Cloud Music, Holyarrow aims not to imitate or follow Western black metal predecessors. Instead, they have been sticking to their own expressions and paying tribute to Chinese history, ancient battles, spirits, and national heroes.
Formed in 2015, Holyarrow has released two singles, three EPs, and two full-length albums to date. Their music often features Chinese musical instrument elements and lyrics in their local dialect of Hokkien, a regional Chinese variation widely spoken in southeastern China and Southeast Asia.
Antiq Records is a label founded in 2009 with a dedication to “the fully coherent concept of making music through sound, image, video, and attitude.” They are known for high-quality outputs and signing reputable black metal bands such as Véhémence, Mésalliance, Hanternoz, and Créatures.
The collaboration is not only a rare one for Antiq, as they don’t traditionally work with non-European bands, but also an exciting announcement for fans of the genre in China, where a partnership between a Chinese metal band and a professional label outside the country is a new phenomenon.
The first release born of this cooperation, a compilation named La Légende de Koxinga, is expected to be out soon. It will include the remake of Holyarrow’s 2016 debut album, Oath Of Allegiance, and the band’s latest EP, The Siege Of Fort Zeelandia, which was released earlier this year.
Holyarrow’s brand new EP My Honor is My Loyalty, which will become the band’s eighth release, is also on its way. With the battlefield described in their songs moving from ancient dynasties to modern China, this new release will spotlight China’s fight for national awakening and independence in the early 20th century, according to renowned Chinese metal label Pest Productions, which will unveil this new EP next month.
Meanwhile, Holyarrow is about to set off for a live tour from October 26 to 29, hitting three cities in East China: Hangzhou, Suzhou, and Hefei.
Cover image via Weibo
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