Wednesday, December 19, 2001 @ 5:43 PM
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"Of a time that now is clear to me, I was playing in the mind of a man who sat in company with the devilů"
As taken from the fourth track of The Witching Hour, "Leaving Nadir," and really a statement that says it all. Never heard of Witchfynde? Or maybe you did but were too young to remember? Well, there you have it all in that one single phrase... sort of.
In fact there are quite a few as quoted by the various band members inside the contents that accompany their The Witching Hour release. A release that displays an interesting mix of old and new, revisited, reborn, by three-fourths of the original late '70s band featuring new vocalist Harry Harrison, who upholds the tradition of their pioneering classic "dark" metal sound. Witchfynde's always rode on the darker side of tradition, saddling their skull and pentagram logo with Venom-like prominence only never taken to literal extremes, and a closely guarded style is theirs, similar to the likes of Quartz meets Priest meets Motorhead meets their maker and travels the path which most commonly fear to tread.
The Witching Hour, some 17 years removed from their last true record together, Lords Of Sin, save for a few well cloaked comps and overseas reissues, in all its sentimental sincerity, sounds surprisingly fresh with an amalgamation of mainly up tempo heavy rockers of the leather and studded variety with the occasional horror flick thrown in -- though Harrison's vocals do get buried from time to time. Though in the beginning Witchfynde never quite hit their stride, they certainly created some memorable metal moments, many of which are embalmed and emblazoned here for the uninitiated and are a welcome arrival. The Witching Hour includes obscure, alongside a fistful of newer tracks like "You'll Never See It Coming," "In Your Dreams," and "Conspiracy."
Yes, Witchfynde was and appears to be again a quality metal band, at first unprepared, misinformed occultists to maybe be better appreciated in today's autumnal embrace.