Tuesday 31 October 2017

Review: Various Artists – 'Baptized In Witchblood'

'Baptized In Witchblood'

the Nigh† †errors label has been producing some great free compilations for a few years now. Always dropping in time for Halloween 'Suicide Serenade', 'Babylon Rising', 'A Dying Breed', and 'Scary Music To Play In The Dark' have been great soundtracks for the spooky season. And this year is now different with the release of 'Baptized In Witchblood' which features seventeen underground electronic artists, plus a bonus 30-minute mix.

Featuring the likes of Sidewalks & Skeletons, D3ath H3x, M∞nflower, ßęđŧīmĕ Šŧōŗĩėş, and Badass Wolf Shirt, the compilation straddles multiple genres including witch house, industrial, metal, and dark electronic music for a truly dark and demonic sounds for the darkening nights.

Tracks such as 'I Save My Hope' by Violet7rip, 'Burn' by Sidewalks & Skeletons, 'Demon' by Drogma, and 'Eclipse ' by BENEA†h MY SH▲DE have more dance appeal with their prominent beats and infectious leads, while tracks such as 'La Dama Marchita ' by Inmacoitada Concepción, 'SUICIDEWITCH' by M∞nflower, and 'Şōũł Ęxŧęřmĭŋăŧĭőŋ ' by ßęđŧīmĕ Šŧōŗĩėş, are more atmospheric, ambient and occasionally noisy in nature to provide a spooky counterpoint to the more grooving tracks. Though it is the heavily metal influenced likes of Sadwrists' 'Whorefecation', D3ath H3x's 'Peine forte et dure', and Here †hey Come's 'Corpse Defiler' that give this compilation a bit more depth by bringing in the guitars and metal drums to great effect.

The compilation definitely has a heavier atmosphere all together this time round with the metal influences dominating the middle of the tracks while being bookended by more recognisably witch-flavoured electronics. The production is fairly uniform for a compilation with very little noticeable differences in the recording qualities of the songs which helps the flow of the album as much as the smart arrangement of the songs despite the extreme variations in genres.

It's nice to hear the witch influences that have made electronic music a bit more dark and interesting start to permeate into metal – which has always had an interesting relationship with electronic music. The Nigh† †errors compilations have been a nice indicator over the past years of how the witch house genre and its siblings have been evolving and 'Baptized In Witchblood' is no different. It has enough great witchy electronics to keep purists happy but is also a useful starting point for metal heads to explore these strange dark hallways.  

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