Metalhead of the Month — Rab


I have decided to profile important members of the underground metal scene in Toronto. Expect a new profile every month. There isn’t a particular order since I am just profiling metalheads as inspiration comes to me. (Please don’t be offended if your profile hasn’t happened yet. It’s coming. …or it’s not, in which case, you need to do more for the community.)

I chose the first inductee for a couple of reasons. Not only is he hugely influential in the Toronto, Canadian, and International metal scenes, but he is also one of the first Big Shots that I met when started heading out to the Underground Toronto Shows.

Rab is a major fixture in the local scene. Anyone who attends more than a couple shows will have seen him chilling with the musicians, photographing a set, rocking out or just enjoying a beer. Very few Toronto Metalheads gain entry into the group of people known as “That guy I always see at shows.” Rab is certainly one of those guys.

Not only is he always around, but he’s almost always working to improve the lot of the Toronto Metal Community. Rab has contributed as a photographer, label exec, and musician.

As a photographer, Rab has captured bands from Toronto’s own Warmachine to Dark Tranquility, to Judas Priest. His style captures the youthful enthusiasm of the new metalhead (which is surprising considering how long he’s been around). Every photo spills the energy of the song out of the 2D print.

Rab, through his conversations with local musicians, discovered a need for a record label that is interested in underground metal. Rab, partnered with another underground BigWig Brent (who later had to leave the project) to create Norther Storm Records. NSR, who started with Will of the Ancients, has helped (among others) The Exalted Piledriver, No Asembly Required, and Deathmarch. Rab’s philosophy has always been to help musicians, rather than to suck them dry. He now has several successful record launches under his belt.

Finally, Rab decided to venture onto the stage himself. He formed, and heads the Joke Black Metal band Detsorgsekalf as Balfabar Nosugref. After one album, a couple music videos, and a few death threats all the way from Norway (from the Norwegians who can’t see the flattery in the joke), Detsorgsekalf is going strong. They are looking to release their second album soon, and are primed to play a show next month.

Along with all of Rab’s obvious contributions to the growth of Toronto Metal are the many intangible things he has added to the scene. How many local musicians has he encouraged? How many new, uncomfortable metalheads has he befriended? Heck, I still feel like a show hasn’t started until I see Rab chilling.

So Here’s to you Rabaflab! Thank you for everything you’ve done and keep it up!


Important Links:
Northern Storm Records :
Metal Rab : (up in January)
Detsorgsekalf :


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One Response to “Metalhead of the Month — Rab”

  1. portablecity Says:

    Rob also wins for “Most Consistently Delighted Face In A Photograph,” a prize I just made up because, goddamn, he does it so well he deserves it.

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