In Ottawa, Ontario, 2006, a group of friends decided to try their hand at the long sought dream of a prolonged musical career, in the form of a thrash metal band named AGGRESSOR! Brian Stephenson, age 18 (vocals/guitar) and Chris Stephenson, age 17 (drums) set out to find a solid lineup in the sleepy suburbs of Ottawa. The search was deemed completed within the first six months, with a steady lineup that consisted of the Stephenson brothers, Adam Pell, age 17 (guitar), and (bass guitarist), Max Gingras, age 19. Combinations of influences were gathered amongst the members, including various death metal and power metal touches. Bands like Slayer, Pantera, Megadeth, and Exodus were, and still are, present at all times within the writings, and are here to stay. The different influences prompted a slight change in the original sound. The newfound members added their twists and turns to the already catchy and strong songs of the original incarnation of AGGRESSOR!
Their songs showcased a more mature songwriting approach with more emphasis on vocals and overall structure bringing them to their first recording in Toronto at Palace Room studios (January 2007). These songs were not intended for commercial purpose, but for the simple purpose of spreading the sound of AGGRESSOR! In March 2007, they entered Emergenza, an international competition, where AGGRESSOR beat out over twenty bands and winning not only by fan base, but earning the respect of three professional judges in the music industry. Making it to the Ottawa/Hull regional finals, AGGRESSOR was issued by the judges, best drummer, best guitarist, best bassist, best vocalist and best band out of the last ten bands to battle. With an Ottawa regional title, AGGRESSOR had returned to the studio in early July 2007 with intent of showcasing a much more professional quality recording that would be potentially used as the band’s first “official” release. After filtering through the Ottawa metal culture, a name arose in the form of Dean Hadjichristou, a veteran studio engineer and local music enthusiast. With two professional recordings under their belt, AGGRESSOR now expanded their local scene by playing various shows in the Ottawa, Toronto and the Montreal areas. With their fan base getting bigger, they played benefit shows for raising money for the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) and radio shows.
AGGRESSOR is driving towards a professional level where they will be recognized amongst the metal genre, leaving an indelible mark. The journey thus far has been rather intense and laden with many different challenges, including a 3 month period in which Brian was touring with Ottawa metal giants Annihilator. Brian has also toured and placed our demo in the hands of bands, now friends, such as Arch Enemy, Sanctity, Machine Head, Throwdown and Trivium who intern have seen AGGRESSOR’s potential. With Brian back, the band is charging ahead with more of a drive than ever, to deliver their own interpretation of fist pounding, neck snapping, thrash metal.
--PURE CANADIAN AGGRESSION Aggressor, 2008.