Reviews of Déjà Hard

Beau B. Everette  WOMEN OF METAL AUGUST 1 2020

This is Michelle Macpherson's Classic Hard Rock & Heavy Metal, Gothic, Progressive, Psychedelic, Stoner band from Montreal, QC, Canada formed in 2003 named AraPacis (pronounced: Ara-Patches). Both Michelle & her husband Jerry Fielden (Lead Guitar, Bass, Synthesizers, Back Vocals, Mandolin, Studio Drums, Production) are huge Deep Purple fans. Michelle's favorite song by them is "Strange Kind Of Woman" and that's indeed what she proclaims to be. Their love of classic rock & metal shines thru with the music they create. So far the band has released a handful of Full-Length albums which can all be found on Band Camp & Spotify.

The band currently has plans to release a new EP this year (2020) named "Déjà Hard". The EP will have four tracks on it. Each song captures your mind and allows it to wander while listening. The EP begins with a huge welcoming keyboard section contributed from David Stone (ex-Rainbow/Max Webster) which leads into an memorable guitar riff that is next to impossible to get out of your head. "Tale Spin" is the track I'm talking about and posting today. It's got the lyrics so read along with Michelle's vocals and tell me it doesn't get stuck in your head. Especially the hook! The breakdown after the solo is mesmerizing. During a relaxed breakdown the violins lay perfectly on top of the slow jam before Jerry goes hard right back into another powerful riff. Michelle's screams take you for a wonderful ride at the very end of the track. "Horror Show" is the band's expert level Gothic song. The end of the track with the solo fading out and Michelle chanting the words "Cast the spell" grips your attention. Along with the great guitar & beautiful bass, knockout keys the band also has a virtuoso on the violin (Gwendolyne Krasnicki). All of these instruments take turns hitting the pinnacle of talent on the track "Fast Fingers". Personally my favorite track on the EP is titled "Crisis". It's a ravishing cacophony of classic metal chaos that turns into an amazing guitar solo, then somehow breaks back into a calming dreamscape before plunging you deep into the chaos again. All the while Michelle's vocals are clear yet frantic, somehow causing a bit of panic. A ton of emotion is put into the song and at the end Michelle rips out a terrifying scream. "Crisis" is the perfect title for the track.


The band has been around for a while and has released seven Full-Length albums and three EPs.

Michelle has two tattoos. One is the Deep Purple logo from Perfect Strangers on her back, and the other is Ian Gillan's signature on her arm. Ian Gillan actually autographed her arm and there are pics to prove it! Michelle says "My main influence will always be Ian Gillan. He was the one who made me want to become a vocalist."

If you're a fan of Black Sabbath, Blood Ceremony, Blues Pills, Deep Purple, Rainbow do yourself a favor and check out the super impressive AraPacis.

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Arapacis – ‘Deja Hard’
Introducing ‘Deja Hard’, the new 4 track EP, from Canadian based metal band Arapacis.

Tale Spin – Familiar classical organ intro leads into uplifting electric melodies. Memorable catchy chorus, invigorating feminine vocals convey the sound, with equal parts grit and fragility. Light touches on the keys, still delivering enthralling tones. The stand out feature has to be those gentle vocal scales. A jazzy section, infused with folky violin enters next. Keys growing stronger. Vocals more intense. Quite an impressive transition between throat shredding grit and softer, natural tones. Ending intuitively.

Horror Show – Beautiful tinkling keys intro, with a rain effect, moving into a classic soft rock section. Vocals make the transition smoothly again. Good strong beat to the rhythm. Here’s where the vocals and accompaniments slot together, naturally. Shrill riffs pierce the air, in a very Vai-esque way, slightly echoing ‘For The Love Of God’. Softened vocals express the message well, capturing its essence, with just an edge of gravel. Great melodic riffs synch with the vocals, ending on another few key notes.

Fast Fingers – Rocky riff intro, low down, trad bluesy melody brings it home, with that natural touch now familiar to Arapacis. Much more riff centred, this time. Really classic sound to it, before the violin and cymbals join in, showcasing the many directions in which the band’s music goes and just how smoothly they merge. Combining folk rock, with slight country hints, old school blues rock and harder edges. Coming to an abrupt, but well executed end.

Crisis – Beautifully performed riff intro, assisted by steady, consistent cymbals. Those sharpened, gritty vocals move in again, blending together, once more, with the gentler tones. V Space Parasites-esque and increasingly so, as it continues. Always, the rhythm’s sustained, as the melodic essences merge, perfectly and the riffs get more acute. Climbing back down again, never losing the rhythm. Just a well presented vocal and instrumental marriage. So in tune, throughout. Rapid, but cutting end.

Overall – Another well composed and constructed outing, for Arapacis, accessible as ever and flowing as well and as naturally as ever. A band who never disappoint, ‘DH’ just proves their depth, chemistry and individuality. Uniquely structured and deftly delivered, with all the stand out features and creative intelligence we’ve come to expect of Arapacis.

9/10 *********

For fans of Space Parasites, Deep Purple, Steppenwolf, The Velvet Underground, Peter Frampton, Yes, Steve Vai.





Deja Hard EP Review

Listen to and pick up your own copy at the link below and read my review in the thread... Review written by

#DoomMetal #MusicReview
9:50 PM · Sep 15, 2020·Twitter

Tale Spin is certainly a brilliant way to start off your musical experience with AraPacis... The organ intro sets the mood for what can only be described as an intense experience... Enchanting vocals that stand out from the grit of the instruments but blend perfectly...


That is something I have always admired about the music from AraPacis, you FEEL it because the musicians themselves feel it... They are not just selling hot topic issues and bandwagon ideas... This is their expressions of their souls...

Horror Show is a complex song that somehow has such a dark & sinister grit to the vocals but then has this light to it, almost like a siren calling to lure you in and do her bidding.. Add in the hard cadence of guitars with an angelic almost guitar solo and you have a killer show


Fast Fingers has the BEST intro... I am fascinated with the speed of guitarists and this song delivers on that... It gets the energy up there and the blood pumping... Then a strong drum to accentuate the guitar and the break up of the piano and violin, this song is dynamic to say


the least... It really allows your mind to get lost in the music and just let out whatever you might be feeling from the day... I would have to say this is my favorite song from the EP because it has so much energy in it...


Crisis is yet another song that loves to play with the tempos which I really enjoy because you need that break up in intensity otherwise the song can be too overwhelming... There is such power behind the vocals, especially with that almost feline like growl... Fantastic song



ALBUMSArapacis Déjà Hard
By Muriel Masse Posted on 1 octobre 2020
Mini-album Déjà Hard de AraPacis
Publié le 1er octobre 2020

Analyse de Junior Picard


Déjà Hard du groupe AraPacis

Malgré la pandémie actuelle, AraPacis n’a pas chômé pour nous offrir un mini-album contenant des pièces qui étaient parues sur les albums précédents du groupe, avant l’arrivée de Michelle Macpherson qui est l’épouse du membre fondateur Jerry Fielden, aux chants. Ce mini-album marque l’introduction du légendaire claviériste de Rainbow et de Max Webster, David Stone comme membre officiel d’AraPacis !

Voici sans plus tarder mon analyse de : Déjà Hard !

1- Tale Spin. Originalement parue sur le tout premier album du groupe, So Many Leaper en 2006, Jerry et sa bande débutent sur les chapeaux de roues avec une intro me faisant penser à Space Truckin de Deep Purple. J’aime beaucoup le son « Hammond » de David Stone marié à la guitare de Jerry dans cette pièce et solidement appuyé par le bassiste Jean Audet et le violon discret de la violoniste, Gwendolyne Krasnicki. À noter que le fils de Jerry et de Michelle, Gillan, chante comme choriste. Je perçois une approche à la fois progressive et doom sur cette pièce avec la voix de Michelle !

2- Horror Show est une pièce écrite par Jerry dans les années 80 et qui était originalement sur le troisième album Netherworld ,paru en 2011, est fort probablement ma pièce préférée du mini-album. Avec une teinte de Metal classique et gothique, et planante dans son ensemble, qui me font voyager dans un monde fantastique où plusieurs époques s’entrechoquent. Bref, j’adore !

3- Fast Fingers est la troisième pièce qui figurait sur So Many Leaper que Jerry avait écrite dans les années 70, avec des sonorités qui me font penser à du Rush et à du Black Sabbath. Cette fois-ci , le violon et les claviers s’en donnent à cœur joie dans cette envolée métallique et progressive ! Dommage qu’elle soit courte !

Extrait, partition de violon de Galiya (Gwendolyne Krasnicki) sur Fast Fingers


4- Crisis est la quatrième pièce qui était sur Netherworld. Nous entrons dans un monde plus sombre avec un riff et les claviers qui me font penser à Rainbow par moment, mais la comparaison s’arrête là, car à mon avis, je la considère très doom dans son approche surtout avec la voix de Michelle qui lui donne cet aspect. Même symphonique, avec les claviers de David, ce qui n’est pas pour me déplaire !

Les points forts du mini-album Déjà Hard. 1- Belle pochette et belle présentation réalisée par James St-Laurent de même que pour la photographie et photographie additionnelle par Kyle Miller.
2- Les pièces sont bien structurées dans l’ensemble avec des sonorités diverses et quelques clins d’œil intentionnels ou pas, aux principales influences du groupe.

Le point faible : C’est au niveau du son de la batterie, non pas que Jerry a fait un mauvais travail à la programmation, loin de là, mais il y a une rigidité dans le son d’une batterie programmée qui m’écorche l’oreille et les pièces auraient plus puncher davantage avec un batteur ! Peut-être que pour des questions logistiques et de pandémie, il en était préférable ainsi !

En studio : Jerry Fielden et Michelle Macpherson

David Stone

Déjà Hard : production :Jerry Fielden et Tyler Christiaens, qui soit dit en passant est bien réalisé !
AraPacis : Jerry Fielden : guitare, mandoline, programmation de batterie
Gillan Macpherson-Briggs : chœurs sur Tale Spin
Michelle Macpherson : voix principale et chœurs
David Stone : claviers
Jean Audet : basse
Gwendolyne Krasnicki : violon sur Tale Spin et Fast Fingers

Photo bannière, de gauche à droite : David, Jean, Gwendolyne, Jerry, Michelle


Metal Maidens review


ARAPACIS-Deja Hard (EP) (independent)
Besides the brand new album of ARAPACIS, there is also a new EP available of this band. This four track EP contains twenty-one minutes of revisited old tracks from earlier albums by this Canadian rock band. It's the perfect way to launch more musical ideas into the public. In "Tale Spin", David Stone takes the lead and does the keyboard introduction in this DEEP PURPLE and RAINBOW type of song, which has plenty of room for some nice improvisation. While in "Horror Show", guitarist Jerry Fielden shows his skills and you only have to tell him once. His traditional solo parts sound refreshing and fantastic. After all, you don't hear that much guitar solos anymore in the riff oriented metal sound of today. "Fast Fingers" is the perfect song title for people such as David and Jerry and it's applicable to both musicians. I hear some influences of the Dutch band FOCUS ("Hocus Pocus") in the guitar riffs, which is a real big compliment, because this is such a great classic. The input of the violin is very surprising and refreshing at the same time. The last song is called "Crisis" and obviously Michelle's star is ready to shine in that one. There are also some nice musical twists here. Sometimes it sounds more retro, while at other times your mind will go out to a more black metal kind of approach, especially when Michelle screams out loud. ARAPACIS will make you discover many different movements again on this four track EP. The band consists of Michelle Macpherson on lead vocals, Jerry Fielden on guitars, synths and studio drums, Jean Audet on bass, Gwendolyne Krasnicki on viola and violin and David Stone on keyboards. The background vocals in the very first track are by Gillan Macpherson-Briggs, by the way. For more info, go to: or [9 points] (Toine van Poorten)



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