From 2000 to 2010, Northwest Royale took their style of metal to places and stages few other Eugene-area bands did. Forming at a time when rap-metal was at the height of its popularity, NWR went in the opposite direction (save for a joke song on their first record), preferring to write songs that were melodic yet crushingly heavy, and their energetic live show took them to stages opening for Rob Zombie, Slayer (twice), Disturbed, the Rockstar Energy Mayhem Festival, and countless venues across the country. Northwest Royale cultivated a large, devoted fan base that would sing and yell along to songs like “Fortified,” “16 Chokes” and the popular “Drinkin’ Again,” and their tireless work ethic landed them on the cover of the Eugene Weekly in 2005 when they quit their day jobs to tour full-time. The band released two full-length albums (2002’s “Respect What Could Be a Problem” and 2004’s “The Nosebleed Section”) on their own before signing with Rock Ridge Music to release “Home Is Where the Hate Is” in 2006, an album that received critical praise from local and national publications.
At the end of 2006, vocalist/guitarist Colton D. Williams left Northwest Royale, and the remaining members – keyboardist/percussionist/vocalist Blake Owens, bassist Kenny Nestor, drummer Beef Wellington and guitarist Travis Zering – continued as a four piece, with Blake ditching the percussion and taking on lead vocals. An EP The Bleeding Edge was released on St. Patrick’s Day 2009, and Northwest Royale toured twice more before deciding to lay the band to rest. On January 23, 2010, they reunited with Colton and played a ten-year anniversary/reunion/farewell show to a near-capacity crowd at the WOW Hall.
For the next few years, Northwest Royale was a memory until last summer, when Blake was cleaning out his closet and discovered old demos of songs that ended up on “The Nosebleed Section”. After talking to Kenny, Beef and Colton, the album (with the demos as bonus tracks) was digitally released worldwide in August to commemorate its tenth anniversary. Immediately, fans were posting “we want a reunion show!!” on NWR’s Facebook page; problem was, the guys hadn’t all been in the same room in years. Fast forward a couple of weeks later, and all five were at Kenny’s house with a bottle of whiskey to see if it was something they wanted to do. By the time the bottle was gone, the answer was yes. On Friday, January 16 2015, Northwest Royale blew the doors off the WOW Hall in Eugene, OR, with a massive two-hour set attended by 400 fans and friends from three different states.
With the guys all busy with different projects, NWR’s future plans are unconfirmed; but with the personal and musical chemistry better than ever, anything is possible, and whatever/whenever it is, it will slay… as Northwest Royale always does.
Northwest Royale is a very proud member of the Jagermusic family and are also sponsored by S.I.T. strings, Washburn guitars, Randall amplifiers, E.V., SRH clothing and Benavente guitars.