I think that many of us remember Angel Witch because of Lars Ulrich and Metallica. Lars told Jan Gradvall in a 2018 interview that he “”put in an ad (in the Recycler) saying, ‘Drummer looking for other heavy metal fans,’ or whatever, ‘to start a band. Influences: DIAMOND HEAD, ANGEL WITCH, TYGERS OF PAN TANG and VENOM’ or something.””; so many fans owe this group a large debt of thanks for inspiring countless other groups that have inspired countless more. Angel Witch was an influence for at least one of the Big 4, but they are a band who’s had a rough road over the years; member charges, hiatus’, etc.
However, this doesn’t seem to have any negative effects on their new album, titled Angel of Light, because they recorded some very cool, old school N.W.O.B.H.M sounding songs. This is a record that pays homage to its roots but also remains relevant in 2019. Let’s talk about the standout tracks, shall we?
This 8 song record opens with the high energy song, “Don’t Turn Your Back”. I find the best way to grab the listener is to come out with energetic tempos, cool riffs (of which they are quite a few), and solid songwriting. I can hear some Dio, some Judas Priest, and some old school metal flavors. This one track is why I kept listening to the album, and I think you’ll feel the same.
“We Are Damned” stuck out like a sore thumb and is one of the better tracks on this album. Part of that is due to the excellent drum tone matched by a phat bass sound. There’s something about the mix on this record that pushes those two instruments into prominence, and I’m not complaining at all!!! Add in a catchy vocal melody, particularly during the chorus, and you’ve got one banger if a track!!
Another track I really got into is the galloping “Window of Despair”, and I can hear a lot of Megadeth in these guitar parts; this begs the question of who influenced who for this record. These thrashing riffs really grab me, and take me back to being a 16-year-old (I’m 44 now), when I was first discovering heavy music outside of Black Sabbath or Led Zeppelin; I love being transported back in time thanks to music.
Closing out the album is “Angel of Light”, another killer track that resembles Sanctuary or Nevermore. That’s a vibe that doesn’t leave until the chorus area, but returns for each of the verses. This is a pretty slamming track towards the latter half, and that guitar solo is a rager!!! I feel that you’re really missing out if you don’t give this album a listen. Angel Witch is one of the bands that is responsible for inspiring the metal we listen to and deserves our attention as much as those they inspired. It will be available for consumption but all of you on November 1st through Metal Blade Records. Enjoy!!!
Edited by: Bishoy Nader