Reunion Mania

Calling All Sanctuary Fans… Who are the Sanctuary Fans?

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Sanctuary - The Year the Sun DiedEver since Warrel Dane and Sanctuary co-conspirator Lenny Rutledge first started tickling one another’s balls again in 2010 after a lengthy prostate hiatus there’s been talk of new material, but despite a sprinking of live shows the band had yet to say anything concrete regarding new music. Until now: the band announced via Facebook yesterday that their new album will be called The Year The Sun Died, it’ll come out on October 6th via Century Media, and that’s the cover artwork above (by Travis Smith).

But here’s the thing: I’m not so sure very many people care. Backwards as it may be, I think most metal fans these days know Warrel Dane as “the guy from Nevermore” and Sanctuary as “the band the guys from Nevermore were in before they were in Nevermore” — and that’s assuming they even know about (or give a shit about) Nevermore, who themselves haven’t released a record in four years, which is like the equivalent of a decade in Metal Years. If you’re any less than 35 years old you weren’t old enough to experience Sanctuary in their heyday, and this isn’t exactly a band with a strong, enduring legacy, a band whose records young kids discover and play back with adoring glee. A band that left a mark, absolutely, but never reached THAT level of ubiquity. So who exactly is the Sanctuary fan that’s been waiting for this reunion to happen?

I say all this as a huge fan of Warrel Dane and all the bands he’s played in (and his excellent solo material). It’s a crying shame that his voice hasn’t graced the grooves of any records since 2010. The metal world needs him! So let us hope that the new Sanctuary album sweeps us all off our feet and takes the metal world by storm, as unlikely as that outcome may seem. In the age of King Diamond’s renaissance — and the general popularity and mere existence of Ghost — maybe now is the time.

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