Witch of 1692
Impious Mysterial Hymn

Hailing from Alabama, Witch of 1692 caught me by surprise last year.  The band somehow by the hand of Lord Satan, entered my FB feed and me, who is mainly a death metal guy, was impressed by the band’s take on black metal.  I love Bathory, DarkThrone and some black metal hear and there and I love blackened death metal.  Witch of 1692 would like you all to know: The album art is meant to glorify the mystery beauty and power in paganism, sorcery and nature. The stance of the witch is meant to portray defiance. Defiance against Judeo-Christian repression.The band Witch (1692) is solely responsible for the art direction as well as photography involved. To remain pure in our message as well as intent.  We write, perform and record all of our music ourselves.  As well as execute all artistic expressions, depictions and illustrations.

Ok review over, go home.. Seriously, this band creates some excellent atmosphere.  After the obligatory black metal opening intro “Revealing the Ritual Blaze”, the true song opener, “Offerings to the Scarlet Woman” comes blazing through your speakers.  One of the most impressive aspects of Witch of 1692 is their creation of atmosphere through truly emotive guitar rhythms and a melodic edge that seeps through more often than not.  These elements are spectacular.  This song goes from mid-paced to a fast beat to blazing black metal blasts, with better than average black metal vocals.  He sounds pained and raspy, as if the vocalist had shards of glass raked across his vocal cords.  “Pledging a Carnal Pact” has some more of those extraordinary melodies seep right in and are super catchy and also creepy.  Excellent organic and powerful drums.  You can tell the drummer is angry, because he is bashing the crap out of the drums and I love the mid-paced and how it goes into the blasting, then returning to the prior pace and then melodic moments.  Picking a favorite song is tough when all of the songs are killer, well, we do get another filler intro, in here so it’s only really a 6 song album-next time, gents, scrap the filler and make it only killer, dammit!! Anyway, “Soaring Above the Consecrated Fire” has one of the best guitar riffs all year.  Super catchy, ethereal and truly well done.

The production on Impious Mysterial Hymn is natural, organic and raw at times, like some of the early, but great, DarkThrone albums.  The sound, quite simply, is perfect with the type of black metal being displayed here.  The drums pound like a mother effer and the guitars are ass-kicking.  Vocals are great and the bass guitar, well quite simply put there is no bass guitar on this.  Hell the band even throws some acoustic moments into the album and again Witch of 1692 separates themselves from the pack out there.  The band finally just released this album, with a limited cd press run.  With no label support this is on a bit of a shoestring budget.  The cd is a cd-r, which you all know my feelings on this.  Cd-r’s wear out over time, due them not having the original music imprint on them, as a silver backed cd does.  The back cd insert is ultra-dark, as are the cd spines making it impossible to make out the band name and song titles.  The album cover is awesome, goes with the music perfectly and there is no booklet, just the cover insert.  But again, when you have no label support, the above items, begin to cost some major skrilla!!

Ultimately it comes down to the music and Impious Mysterial Hymn by Witch of 1692 is: original, ethereal, well-played, organic, emotive, catchy and honestly for me, is the sleeper hit of 2017.  I am damn impressed by these guys. If you enjoy this type of extreme metal, please support this band, they’re pretty goddamned underground.  Like their FB page, buy the cd and tell ‘em Frank sent you.  If you should so chose not to get this album, then I’ll give you a cup in the gub [Irish slang for punching you in the chin].   This is an absolute Buy or Die!!

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Frank Rini
July 27th, 2017

Comments

  1. Commented by: nick k

    Cool review Frank. I still think Panzerfaust is my favorite Darkthrone record. Amazing to hear a group from Alabama conjuring up some grim.


  2. Commented by: F.Rini

    Yeah, it’s an impressive debut. I love all darkthrone albums and panzerfaust is killer. For me it’s A blaze in the northern sky


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