Thursday 21 August 2014

Review: Witches Of Doom – 'Obey'


With a name like Witches Of Doom it's pretty easy to guess where this Italian quintet are coming from. The gothic presence of Type O Negative meets the crushing doom of Orange Goblin with a healthy dose of classic bluesy Danzig thrown in for good measure. The combination not dissimilar to The 69 Eyes ditching their glam metal fixation and joining the Southern Lord roster.

Big riffs, deep vocals and atmospheric keyboard accompaniments power the relentless backbone of the album with the likes of 'The Betrayal', 'To The Bone', 'Dance Of The Dead Flies' and 'Rotten To The Core' proving their heavy credentials. However its when they really let their goth sides out that the magic really happens. The solemn and mournful centrepiece 'Crown Of Thorns' and penultimate track 'It's My Heart (Where I Feel The Cold)' channel Paradise Lost and the Sisters Of Mercy in this powerful ballad. While the album's epic nine-minute finale 'Obey' breaks out the middle eastern instruments for a sumptuous ending.

The production is pretty solid with the band sounding like they've been turned up to eleven for most tracks. This can sometimes come across as a wall of noise, but it does mean that the quieter elements to the tracks are always easy to hear and define. There is a persistent roughness to the recording, which is a little distracting in places, but overall doesn't detract from the songs.

This may be the band's début album, but it shows a lot of accomplished song writing. It is a little rough around the edges and it perhaps over relies on their default heavy sound, but they do show a lot of promise. Exploring some of the more gothic end of their sound would be nicer to hear, but if you like your riffs Witches Of Doom are definitely for you.

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