[published]: 1989, April 19
[in]: The Province (Vancouver), p. 49
[article]: Metal Futures Sound Good
[by]: Tom Harrison

After 13 years of "wearing the hairdo," Larry Gillstrom put down the his guitar and came up for air.

Upon surfacing he discovered that the heavy metal he'd played for so long as a member of Kick Axe was changing its shape but needed somenone to mould it.

A year later, Gillstrom's company, Timeless Productions, has a monopoly on the heavy metal scene.

From promoting local metal bands at Club Soda, he has tapped the metal underground to present such extreme groups as Death and comic characters Manowar.

Now Timeless is trying to create a concert circuit throughout Western Canada.

Kick Axe was a popular metal group for whom things began going awry from the time it recorded the first of its three LPs for CBS. Last year, when the group's manager went up on charges of embezzlement and left Kick Axe prey to his creditors, Gillstrom formed Timeless Productions.

With Kick Axe in mothballs, the 33-year-old guitarist, having learned a thing or two the hard way, was looking for a means of staying involved.

"We discovered there was no one in town willing to promote shows, so we became a promotion company," Gillstrom says.

He got his foot in the door of Club Soda where Timeless has presented shows each Monday for the past 40 weeks. Between Gillstrom's Metal Mondays and Denise Jackson's Sunday Street Sounds, Club Soda now is back from the nightclub wasteland.

Gillstrom manages Death Sentence, Young Gun, Goliath and Beauty Kills and advises and represents 30 others.

"I tell these bands not to think of me as manager and not to lay their careers in my hands," he says with an air of sincere concern. "Because I can't promise them anything."

It would amaze most people, however, that there are 30 heavy metal bands in Vancouver.

"I get at least one new band a day calling me. I try to give them a shot by starting them off at Soda."

Gillstrom can articulate the aspirations and aesthetics of metal better than most of his acts. How many musicians do you know who can discuss the existentialism of performance?

But his main value as a spokesman may be that, in dealing with metalheads and punks in his even-handed, often bemused manner, Gillstrom is helping to erase biases.

"I think that my company has had a lot to do with the mingling of these people because they meet one another in my office and realize they're up against the same adversity."

Timeless productions has taken its first step toward Western Canadian imperialism by booking a club in Calgary. Edmonton is next as the resistance of other club weakens.