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ALBUM OF THE MONTH
This Clear Divide
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by Space Bacon
Progressive rock, Jamtronica
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Devil's Witches
(Velvet Magic)
2017
Staff Rating: Crank this to 9 of 11
|    Editor's Pick
Genre:
Doom, Heavy psyche rock
Sounds Like:
Salems Pot, Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats, Trouble
When it comes to doom styled rock many band’s sound eerily similar to one another, as most pay homage to the almighty Sabbath and Sleep riff. To be honest, as much as we love doom, there are times when the genre feels lost or stuck in a path. Then out of nowhere we come across a band that reignites our passion for this genre, welcome Devil’s Witches and their debut release Velvet Magic. What we have here is a 60s era occult inspired heavy psyche rock album with splashes of raw doom, blues and trippy psychedelic rock.

You may read that Velvet Magic is just a doom album, yet it is so much more than this. The band should not be pigeon holed as just another Sabbath worshiping band. The music has an original sound as Devil’s Witches bring a ton of their own vision to the table, easily making this one of the top heavy psyche albums in 2017 so far.

What is behind the name Devil’s Witches?
The band has a heavy interest in the history of what the human perception of good and evil is. According to Devil’s Witches, the band name is the purest example of the vilified throughout human history, both Devil and Witches perfectly convey this.

To further explain their beliefs, the Devil became the prevalent symbol for evil and offers personal sovereignty, freedom of thought, freedom of sexuality and everything else that is truly liberating. As for Witches they were wrongly killed for seemingly being vessels of the Devil due to healing through herbal remedies, or their female sexuality. The female protagonist of Velvet Magic is of the Devil and she's a Witch and she's mankind's salvation from the atrocities of the 1960s. Having a sexually liberated Woman who is of the Devil be the Hero is absolutely beautiful. Well, this seems to make them even more intriguing.

What are the highlights of the album?
This is a tough call, they hook you from the get go with great back-to-back songs in “Apche Snow” and “Motorpsycho”. These two cuts are rhythmic, trippy as fuck and just flat out addicting, we seem to gravitate to the fluidity of “Motorpsycho”. The album keeps moving along with its heavy 70s drug laced vibe of “Black Couldron”. The instrumental “Pornodelic Opium Dreams” with its heavy use of the organ sounds as if it could be a soundtrack for a late 60s horror/cult film, the sound is very authentic for this time period. We love the fact there is no overly long slow drudgery songs to be found on the album, these guys get right to the heart of the matter.

It’s very hard not to continue on with the highlights, at this point the whole album just sucks you in. “Voodoo Woman” has some terrific upbeat rhythm with infectious spacious guitar work. This leads us to the 7 minute “Mountain of the Devil’s Witch” and this is where the doom starts to crawl in. It’s a heavy weighted song with elements of sludge, we hear a bit of old Trouble within the guitars, so turn this one up, it sounds tremendous on high volume. “Jupitar Kush” is a great wondering short instrumental which brings you to the title track “Velvet Magic”. This one offers up some infectious rhythm with standout bass work and very intriguing lyrics. Closing the album is the soft “Requiem Pour Un Vampire,” the gentle feel of this tune is great way to bring things to a close.

How is the production value?

The production has a raw analogue quality about it, which probably translates well to a live show. This style of production benefits the music and gives off that 60s era aura, it’s certainly not over produced or too polished. The vocals are very distinct and rhythmic as there is a constant muffled effect overlaying the vocals, which suites the music perfectly.

Does the album art reflect the music?
Hell yes, that’s what drew us into the band. This album art was created by the legendary art of Branca Studio and definitely captures the feel of Devil’s Witches.

What adult beverage to enjoy while listening to this album?

We highly recommend Clementine by Clown Shoes Brewery. The aroma and tastes of citrus really compliment this album well.

What are our final thoughts on Velvet Magic?
Devil’s Witches have invigorated our love of doom psyche rock. Released through Cursed Tongue Records, this album contains an aura of 60s doom psychedelia which has captivated us and propelled them to one of the best heavy albums we have laid our ears upon so far this year.

Tracklist:
1. Apache Snow 04:52
2. Motorpsycho 03:03
3. Black Cauldron 04:31
4. Pornodelic Opium Dreams 04:49
5. Voodoo Woman 04:16
6. Mountain of the Devil's Witch 07:00
7. Jupiter Kush 02:33
8. Velvet Magic 06:31
9. Requiem pour un Vampire 03:19

Follow Devil's Witches: Bandcamp / Facebook
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