Monday 21 November 2016


Time to return to Brazil and visit a band who have graced these pages before.... Black Witch.
Black Witch,  Lorena Rocha (vocals/guitar), Rafaum Costa (guitar/vocals), Amilton Jr.(bass/vocals) and Fred Nunes (drums), wowed both Desert Psychlist  and the patrons of the doom/stoner/psych world with the release of their debut EP "Aware" (September 2015). The band pricked up many an interested ear with their mix of occult/doom and stoner fuzz, fronted by quite unique female vocals, so it is good to see the band return to assail our senses once again , this time with a full album flying under the banner of "Solve et Coagula"

When "Aware" was reviewed on these pages back in 2015 Desert Psychlist brought to listeners attention some reservations concerning Rocha's vocal delivery, reservations that probably did not endear Rocha or the rest of the band towards Desert Psychlist but then that is the nature of the humble review, you don't always read what you want to be written, thankfully on "Solve et Coagula" these vocals issues have been resolved. Rocha's vocals, here, are tighter, more controlled without losing any of their latent menace, her voice prowling around the dark downtuned heaviness Costa, Amilton Jr. and Nunes lay beneath her like a panther stalking its prey.
Two of the songs featured on "Solve et Coagula" "Necromancer"  and "Salem" first found their home on the bands debut EP "Aware" and are here given a crisper treatment with the heavy distortion of the original recordings just slightly toned down giving them a fresher, cleaner feel without compromising their intensity. Of the albums newer tunes "Solve", "Eyes Inside","Summerian Tongues" and the excellent "The Serpent And The Dove" stand out as highlights, the latter built around a scorching and darkly dissonant guitar motif . This is not to say that the rest of the album should be ignored, songs like the metallically manic "Chapter XIII-"Necromancy", the stonerized chugging doom of "Tzolkin" and "Sitra Ahara"  and the atmospherically demented "Coagula"are all equally enjoyable slabs of dark stoner doom peppered with elements of psych and occult rock colouring.
"Solve et Coagula" is an album of songs that sees Black Witch take the dissonant slurred riffs of Alice In Chains and blend them into the deeply downtuned and distorted doom grooves of today, resulting in a sound that is unique and all their own.
Check 'em out .....

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