Toronto, Canada's Woods of Ypres first emerged in 2002, armed with an extensively named demo in Against the Seasons: Cold Winter Songs from the Dead Summer Heat, which saw original members David Gold (vocals, guitar), Aaron Palmer (bass, vocals), and Brian McManus (guitar, vocals) forging a complex sound that was part doom, part black metal, and part pagan/folk exotica. This creative m.o. would persist in years to come and across albums such as Woods II: Pursuit of the Sun & Allure of the Earth (2004), Woods III: The Deepest Roots and Darkest Blues (2007), and Woods 4: The Green Album (2009), all of which were released by Gold's own label, Krankenhaus Records, to mild underground metal scene interest.
In 2010, rumors indicated that Gold had disbanded Woods of Ypres after relocating to Kuwait for work, but it was soon revealed that the band (based around Gold, guitarist/bassist Joel Violette, cellist Raphael Weinroth-Browne, and oboist Angela Schleihauf) was in fact already at work on a fifth studio album, Woods 5: Grey Skies & Electric Light. In late 2011, several months after recording finished, Gold was killed in a car accident. Positive reviews greeted the release of Woods 5 in early 2012, but Violette indicated that the band would not continue in the wake of Gold's death. ~ Eduardo Rivadavia, Rovi