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Witchfinder - Hazy Rites

Hazy Rites
by Jean-François ‘’Jackal’’ Poulin at 03 April 2020, 5:17 AM

WITCHFINDER is a Stoner/Sludge Metal band from Clermont-Ferrand, France. This is actually the second band I review this work from this small region in France. This is their second full-length album and first release since the self-titled album back in 2017. They were formed back in 2016 and this album is one of the more longer albums in the genre.

Well before I listened to this opus, I read a lot about the band and their previous releases and it definitely gave me a nice glimpse into what they can offer. You won’t be able to fully appreciate what they can do if you mind is clear if you know where I am going at. If you want to have the full effect of the music, you have to get ‘’hazy’’ and observe the full listening experience. I know there are a lot of bands in the genre to you have to do this but I won’t be doing this and will review it as as I hear it.

 They definitely conjure a crushing sound with some rather gnarly vocals. I have heard so many bands in the genre (and the sub-genres) but Clément really adds his personal touch to the songs. It’s like if you mix Vincent Houde from the highly underrated DOPETHRONE with the high-pitched energy of Thomas Jager from MONOLORD. He does bring a lot to the table and adds some rather nice additions to his vocal range.

The album does not pull any punches but it’s still a very average Stoner Metal album. You don’t haven much innovation and I know it’s something quite difficult in the genre. You have to really stand out and it’s not something I really caught on with this particular band. There is enormous growth if you compare with the previous releases but some songs seem to drag on forever.

It's not a paint by numbers Stoner album nonetheless. You have that typical Doom Metal slowness and they definitely broaden their horizons on this album but it’s nothing you haven’t heard before unfortunately. The tempo shifts and drawn own experimentations are a nice touch but it’s still a very standard album for the genre. There is heavier emphasis on the ambiance and atmosphere than anything else which you can say is quantity over quality in a sense. I appreciate the whole experience but something was lacking even though it’s a very familiar sound.

Songwriting: 7
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 7
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

1. Ouija
2. Satan’s Haze
3. Covendoom
4. Sexual Intercourse
5. Wild Trippin’
6. Sorry
7. Dans l’instant
8. Acolytes
Clément – Bass and Vocals
Stan – Guitars
Thomas – Drums
Record Label: Mrs Red Sound


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