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Psychedelic Witchcraft : Sound Of The Wind

The sophomore full-length from Psychedelic Witchcraft is a significant step in the evolution of this talented Stoner Doom outfit.

2017 has been a rather successful year for Florence's Occult Stoner Doom rockers, Psychedelic Witchcraft. Following on from the acclaim of 2016's 'The Vision', a compilation of new and previously released material, 'Magick Rites and Spells' (see Doom-metal.com's glowing review earlier in 2017 for further details) was put out to fill the gap for impatient fans waiting for the new album, and showcase older material to a newly expanded fan base. On top of this, the band made their debut UK appearance at the Damnation Festival on 4th November alongside such heavyweights as Paradise Lost and Pallbearer. A pretty decent twelve months by anyone's standards, but now the wait is over, and the new album has been released on Listenable Records.

Surely feeling an element of pressure to conclude such a successful year with another strong release, Psychedelic Witchcraft have certainly come up with the goods. 'Sound of the Wind' is another Stoner Doom treat; steeped in the sound and feel of the early 70s and laced with a liberal dose of occult mysticism. Beginning with instrumental number, 'Maat', the album kicks off with an acoustic slightly folky feel and just the right air of menace to whet the appetite for what's to come. It doesn't take long for the band to hit their stride with their trademark bluesy Stoner Doom on 'Lords of the War' with its infectious riff and soaring vocal from singer Virginia Monti. It's clear early on that Psychedelic Witchcraft are a band brimming with confidence and beginning to hit their potential. Production compliments the band perfectly, allowing the at times virtuoso performances of the band - guitarist Jacopo Fallai and aforementioned vocalist Virginia Monti in particular - space to express themselves.

Amongst the Stoner Doom riffs and impressively wild bluesy guitar soloing, there's the occasional nod to the more psychedelic sounds of the 60s and 70s with trippy organ effects reminiscent of the far out likes of the Grateful Dead and Hawkwind. It serves to add an extra dimension to the Psychedelic Witchcraft sound and strongly contributes to the rich, potent Stoner vibe of the album. 'The Warrens', one of many album highlights, is a particularly effective example of this; with its mellow, brooding intro suddenly springing to life with a thumping Stoner Doom riff complimented by trippy organ effects, and Virginia's masterful delivery of the song's occult themed lyrics. If any further proof were required that the devil has all the best tunes, well, this surely closes the argument. One of the strongest songs on the album, and indeed, one of the band's strongest to date.

When the album comes to an end, it's with another instrumental piece. The piano driven 'Horizons' features some of the finest guitar work on the record, and rounds things off in spectacular style. With its reflective tone, it works well as a final track and serves to give the album balance in the sense of a beginning, a middle and an end, and rewards listening to it in its entirety in one sitting. Much like people used to in the days Psychedelic Witchcraft's music evokes. 'Sound of the Wind' is a significant step in the evolution of this talented Stoner Doom outfit, and one of my favourite albums of 2017.

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Reviewer's rating: 9.5/10


Tracklist :
1. Maat
2. Lords Of The War
3. Wild We Go
4. Sound Of The Wind
5. Turn Me On
6. Rising On The Edge
7. The Warrens
8. Sin Of Mine
9. Let Me Be Myself
10. Horizons

Duration : Approx. 39 minutes

Visit the Psychedelic Witchcraft bandpage.

Reviewed on 2017-11-12 by Nick Harkins
A Dream Of Poe - The Wraith Uncrowned
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