Album Type: Album
Date Released: September 1st 2014
Label: Argonatua Records
The Great Depression - track listing:
A Watching Of Wolves
To Death (I'll Drink)
Stare Into The Sun
A hard-rockin', groove-laden, doom soaked audio assault voicing tales of disdain and suffering about this world gone mad.
Kate McKeown - Vocals
Dave McQuillan - Drums & Vocals
Len Lennox - Guitar & Vocals
Adam Clarke - Guitar & Vocals
Richard Maher - Bass
Witch Charmer released a superb and well received EP earlier this year. It’s style of dark brooding Occult based Doom/Stoner Metal won them a lot of fans within the Doom/Stoner Metal community. Witch Charmer are ready to unleash their highly anticipated debut album – The Great Depression.
So what makes Witch Charmer different to all of the other Occult Rock/Doom/Stoner Metal bands currently out there? For a start, they have a great lead vocalist in Kate who oozes style, grace, confidence with her deliciously dark doom tinged vocals. Though Witch Charmer boast 4 band members who provide vocals at different times on the album. It is a strange and wonderful setup as the vocals can be very deafening at times to match the atmospheric doom and gloom riffs that await you.
First track – Suffer – proves their debut EP – Euphoric Curse – was only a sign of things to come as Witch Charmer set the scene for a dark gathering that packs a lot of groove into the mix. The guitars are primed and ready to unleash some magical riffs to get you into a hard-rocking dark mood. The dual vocals of Kate and Len (I think it’s Len. But it’s hard to tell when the band has 3 male vocalists to choose from) offer a contrasting style to each other as Len feels he is from a legendary 70s Hard Rock band who has seen it all. While Kate is the newcomer aiming to prove, she can sing with the best of them. Witch Charmer seductively blends the different genres for one captivating tale where the mood has a slight dangerous vibe to keep you on the edge of your seat.
Suffer is the perfect track to open the album with as it shows you what Witch Charmer is all about. The other tracks follow the same template mainly spellbinding vocals from Kate and other members of the band coming in with grizzled vocals of their own. The instrumental work ventures from Pure 70s based Doom to the more riffier modern based Stoner Metal vibes that the band excels at. Tracks such as The Cull and A Watching of Wolves prove Witch Charmer are master storytellers with their bewitching tales of doom and terror. The album has a hidden addictive quality to it as the band make you feel part of their dark world. Things become very sinister indeed on the second half of the album as the riffs become ever more heavier and the vocals slightly more disturbing.
The Great Depression ends on a fantastic note with the 14-minute epic – Stare Into the Sun – that sees the band venture more into the Doom Metal side of their music. It is a dark captivating tale that feels influenced by legendary bands such as Black Sabbath, Saint Vitus and Pentagram. The Stoner Metal riffs are not too far behind to bring this track kicking and screaming into the 21st century.
Witch Charmer deserve credit in getting Mos Generator main man – Tony Reed – to mix and master the entire album as it’s sounds loud as heck from the word go. As he gives the album, a more richer and heavier sound compared to their EP. The Great Depression is an outstanding album on all levels. Witch Charmer may have the potential to be one of the UK’s leading Occult Rock/Doom/Stoner Metal bands.
Thanks To Argonauta Records and Witch Charmer for sending me a promo to review. The Great Depression is out to buy from Sept 1st 2014 on Argonauta Records.
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Written by Steve Howe