Saturday 27 February 2016

Interview with Clayton Anderson from BEASTWARS

I've been a fan of New Zealand Riffsters – BEASTWARS – ever since they released their incredible debut album back in 2011. It showed the Sludge/Stoner Metal world that a great new band has risen with huge gigantic riffs and intelligent lyrics to match.

In 2013, they shot further into the Sludge/Stoner Metal ascendency with their 2nd album – Blood Becomes Fire. I rate that album as my fave album of 2013 when I was The Sludgelord. BEASTWARS have a fearsome and an electrifying reputation in the live arena which has seen them perform gigs with Mastdon, High On Fire, Red Fang and The Sword amongst others.

The band will be releasing their 3rd album – The Death Of All Things – on April 22nd 2016. I'm pleased to report that BEASTWARS may have released their finest album to date. As the guys have opted for a more progressive feel with hard-hitting riffs and lyrics to match. Matt's vocals are more focused and pissed off than ever before.

I was given the chance to discuss with Clayton Anderson (Guitars) about the past, present and future of BEASTWARS and this is what went down....

Hi Clayton. Thanks for doing this interview. How are things with you today.

Great, thanks. We just got back from playing a couple of shows in Aussie (Sydney and Melbourne), which went down really well.

So lets get straight down to business. Your new album – The Death Of All Things. A brilliant album if I do say so myself. What can people expect from the album:

Thanks man! If you’re familiar with our last two albums you can expect the usual Beastwars riffage but I suppose some things that might stand out are some of the songs are longer and have feel changes in them - so what you hear at the end of the song is totally different to how it started.

There is maybe more melody in the vocals and guitars - instead of multi-track rhythm guitars pummelling you - we have guitars doing soaring melodies while James’ bass is still providing that identifiable slab of sludge, rhythmic backbone. We wanted to create more space on this album, so it’s not all a continuous guitar and vocal assault - on some of our tracks there are parts where it’s just drums, bass and vocals while the guitar is noticeably silent or just feeding back.

We tried things that we probably wouldn’t have on the first two albums, well, definitely the first. One song, which Nato and Matt wrote, is just Nato playing an acoustic guitar with Matt singing, not roaring but singing. That’s something we definitely wouldn’t have been game enough to do on the previous albums.

The album has a different sound compared to your first two albums. Was that the plan todo something different with this album. It has more of a progressive feel and Matt's vocals are more focused:

With the vocals, Matt wanted people to hear his lyrics and all their intensity. Apart from having a unique roaring voice, he has actually got a really diverse range. We tracked the album in our home town, Wellington. The previous two albums were recorded in Dunedin.

This time we tracked with James Goldsmith at his Blue Barn studio. It has this beautiful big room, like a barn (hence the name) with a wooden beamed high ceiling. James got a fantastic sound out of Nato’s drums, which were tracked first, and when we listened to them back, it was then we knew that we were going to get something different but great.

The other major contribution to this record’s sound is that it was mixed and mastered by different people than the first two albums. Both Andrew Schneider and Brad Boatright did an amazing job and added unique touches that, in some songs, we wouldn’t have thought of.

The album feels slightly more political as well especially on songs such as Devils Of Last Night, Witches and Black Days. What made you go down this route with the new record. It seems your mega-pissed off at the world:

We’ve always had this underlying aggression and pissed-offness at the state of the world, which comes out in our music. It’s pretty obvious the world is going to hell in a hand basket thanks to the world’s politicians, religious leaders and the banksters, who I loath and wish to see hanging from Wall Street’s lamp posts some day. But the way things are going it doesn’t look like things are going to get any better.. maybe when, as a society, we can get our collective heads out of our cellphones and stop worrying about what the Kardashians are wearing or who Kanye is dissing, things might take a change for the better. 

Did you do anything differently recording this album compared to your other albums. Was it an easier or harder album to write and record for:

I’d say harder due to a few things. First, we wanted to make something that sounded different than the last two albums so it took a while and a bit of experimentation to work through stuff. Also, we weren’t getting together jamming as much as we use to. Nato was spending a bit of time up in Auckland because of his work and we all had other commitments at different times.

It was only two years between the release of our self-titled album and our second, Blood Becomes Fire. It took us over two years to get back into the studio to record The Death Of All Things. During a lot of that time the band’s focus was on establishing ourselves in Australia, so we were touring there a lot and getting new fans familiar with the first two albums.

I've read that this is the last album in the trilogy started off with your self-titled album and could be the last album you guys will be recording. Is this true. I know with Nathan moving to London soon will make things harder for BeastWars to perform and record. Is this the end for BeastWars as we know it:

The Beast will never die! I suppose you could say this is the last album of our trilogy. We always set out to do three albums that had unified themes - and with that goes the like of having Nick Keller do the artwork etc. We wanted to make three albums that we would be proud of and stood up to our own expectations, which thankfully, they have.

Nato is shifting to London, which means we won’t be touring as much, and writing new material may be put on the back burner to start off with. But, to look on the bright side, Nato is the band’s manager and having him over in London might open up other doors of possibility. 

Before Nathan moves over to the UK. Will you be touring this record heavily at home or abroad:

Yes - in New Zealand and Australia.. so far. But, as I said in my previous answer, with Nato shifting to London, other possibilities might eventuate.

I consider The Death Of All Things as your finest record to date. It's more personal and takes more risks than the first two albums. And you know I love your first two records. Do you feel this is your best album yet:

Yes, and, pretty much because of the reasons you’ve outlined in your question - it’s personal and it takes more risks. We could’ve played it safe and provided another album full of sludgy dense riffs but we’ve chosen to stick our necks out - with the possibility of them getting the chop! Who knows, some old school fans might not like it because it’s a bit different. Although, there are songs on our previous two albums that I think have elements of where we ended up with this album. Tracks like The Sleeper on Blood Becomes Fire and Iron Wolf on our self-titled first album, hark to the kind of experimentation with tracks on The Death Of All Things.

What inspired you when writing the album as you have included some bleak lyrics at times:

A lot of what’s happening now in the world and how it seems to be a repeat of follies from the past. We never seem to learn.

Your releasing the album yourselves like you did with your previous albums. I know a lot of people are looking forward to the vinyl release. You know that's going to sell out straight away. Does that make you proud that you have a dedicated fan-base wanting to buy the album on vinyl straight away that it sells out:

It would be great if the vinyl sells out straight away but you never know, so I don’t want jinx things by presuming it will!.. but if it does, we’ll be buzzing. A lot of effort has gone into this, especially because we are our own record label, which means a lot of extra work (mainly for Nato). We have a special place in our hearts for vinyl - it’s more than music, it’s like buying a piece of art - so to see so many people have that same appreciation for something you’ve made is one of the biggest buzzes anyone can ever have.

After the success of the last record, did you have any offers from record labels to release your new album or previous albums to a wider market. Or do you strictly want to be solely independent:

We have, but to cut a long story short, it was better for us to do it ourselves. We have all artistic and business control, and in the end, we only have ourselves to blame if the record doesn’t do as well as we would like.

One of my fave songs on the album is not even the heaviest – The Devil Took Her. Such a beautifully written song and haunting lyrics. That song felt like it could have been used from a classic New Zealand movie. Why did you include that song on the album as it's perhaps your most personal song:

I probably won’t be able to give you the best answer as I didn’t write or play on it. It was a guitar piece that Nato had come up with - we initially had ideas of having these guitar interludes in between songs but it was blowing the time out on the album. Matt wrote the lyrics after reflecting on a disastrous evening with disastrous results, which really affected him for months after.. but that’s all I can really say as they are his lyrics.

If this is the final album from BeastWars. Looking back over your musical career, would you change anything about the musical journey you've been on so far. Good or Bad.

We don’t know if this will be the last and we aren’t announcing any break-up or retirement but things are up in the air at the moment because of Nato shifting to London. I can’t speak for the rest of the guys but it’s a shame we haven’t got to Europe or the US but things just haven’t worked in our favour yet for that to happen. There’s a variety of reasons for this, which I won’t bore you with, lets just say we’re not in our twenties with no responsibilities. We have boring - not very rock n roll - reasons like families, day jobs and mortgages.

Before you go, do you have anything to say to your fans.

Thanks for digging our music - we hope you enjoy the album as much as we enjoyed making it.. and.. Obey The Riff!

All the best with the new album. It's your best work yet. Best of luck with your future endeavors. Hopefully we will hear more of your great music in the years to come.


Words by Steve Howe and Clayton Anderson

Thanks to Richard at Sheltererd Life PR for arranging this interview. Thanks to Clayton for taking the time out to talking to us. The Death Of All Things will be released on CD/DD/Vinyl from BEASTWARS on April 22nd 2016.


Interview with DEADSMOKE

I'll admit I was a little apprehensive before I posted the album review for today's guests. As Lucas, written a Live Review or as he put it - “my first impression of this record, "raw" as it happened”. I was apprehensive as I hadn't published a review like that before, I was thinking would the band like the review. Was it worth taking a risk.

So I said FUCK IT and I published the review. It got a great response from regular viewers and the band themselves. It was a risk worth taking and that's how I feel what DEADSMOKE have achieved with their brilliant S/T debut album. They take risks with their sound and created a heavy and sometimes ugly Doom/Metal sound that I hope will see these guys go a long way in the scene.

Newly signed to Heavy Psych Records, I wanted to find out more about DEADSMOKE and what they thought of Lucas aka LK Ultra's review. This is what they said....

Hi guys. How are things with you today. Thanks for doing this interview.

Hi Steve, we are fine. Thank you for the interview!

So why did you choose the name Deadsmoke for your band. Any specific meaning.

Actually Deadsmoke wasn’t our first choice. We needed a deep and long brainstorming for find an appropriate name. We want a name, which could give a first taste of the kind of music we’re playing. If you read the name and you don’t know the band, you don’t have to expect to listen to catchy rocky glam blink-blink metal!

Deadsmoke is the vortical product of a deadly combustion.

How did the band get together. Did you all know each other before forming the band.

Everybody of us was playing since forever in different bands, so we obviously know each other since many many years! At the beginning the band was more stoner-oriented, but along the way we lost every melodic influence.

How would you describe your music. Apart from my pal Lucas who reviewed the album for me stating the following:

This album will forever be linked to tone in my mind, as these guys have found the heaviest one possible. It's that deep grimy tone with pendulous, monolithic riffing that brings to mind Spelljammer and Monolord. I'm sure doomsters will go apeshit over Deadsmoke once they get their name out there a little more, and well they should. “

It’s an honour for us to be linked with such bands! This is exactly the kind of sound we aim…or maybe even more engraved…

Your about to release your new album soon. What can people expect from the album? Or does Lucas description above tell people all they need to know.

The description of Lucas is mind-blowing. We hope our music is also mind-blowing!

Was it an easy or hard album to record for?

It wasn’t a hard album to record for, but actually we practised a lot to get the right riff at the right moment. In such a music small details may have big influences…and Maurice is quite a perfectionist…
We also tried to keep the post-production as simple as possible. We didn’t want an artificial album.

The album is being released via Heavy Psych Sounds. How did you hook up with them? Did you have any offers from other labels to release your album?

We know Gabri of HPS Rec and after a concert on a beach in Italy we end up drinking some beer and speaking about a possible future collaboration.

What inspires you when writing and recording music?

What we need is a cold smelly dark room and some beer. We take inspiration listening to bands like Toner Low, Sleep, Goatsnake, Monolord…

Do you have an advanced set-up when playing live or recording new material in the studio?

Not at all! Except for Teo and his luggage of pedals, we have a basic set-up.

What is the song-writing dynamic in the band. Is it a group collective or down to one individual.

The song writing is mainly centred on the collective: we meet in our rehearsal room and we play. Many things come during some jam session, but the best inspirational place for Teo, where he’s used to generate the best riffs of history, is the toilet.

Will you be touring the record heavily locally. Do you get the chance to perform regular gigs in Italy or your home-town or do you have to travel further afield to perform live.

We actually have good chances to play both locally and afield. Most of the shows we are going to perform abroad are booked by HPS Rec (take a look on the page to see when and where).

Before you go, do you have anything to say to your fans?

Take some spliff ;-)

Well guys, thanks for doing this. All the best with the new album. It's a great album.


Words by Steve Howe and DEADSMOKE

Thanks to Claire at Purple Sage PR for arranging this interview. Thanks to DEADSMOKE for taking the time out to talking to us. Their S/T debut album will be released on CD/DD/Vinyl from Heavy Psych Sounds from March 26th 2016.


Interview with KABBALAH

Spain isn't one of those countries which have a big doom rock scene with rich traditions; so I was really surprised to discover the power trio Kabbalah playing catchy psychedelic and doomy rock stuff. The band consists of two ladies Carmen and Marga who played together in Las Culebras for few years and guitarist Alba who joined them in about 2015. Kabbalah just released their third EP “Revelations” and I give you my word that you will not regret if you spend some time to listen these four great tracks. Carmen and Marga are here to spread charms of rock alchemy upon you!

Salute ladies! How are you? What's Kabbalah current status?

Carmen: Hello! We’re very well, thank you. Kabbalah is now getting ready for shows to come, and trying to spread the word about our last release, “Revelations”. We are proud and happy with the EP.

Your newest record “Revelations” consists only of four tracks, but it’s bloody strong collection of songs, and “The Darkness of Time” and “Dark Revelations” are sheer hits! But how do you value this record from your point of view?

Carmen: So glad you like it. I’m very happy with all the songs. This is us, our sound, and I see “Revelations” as the beginning of the future of the band.

Is “Revelations” EP only a digital album? How can Kabbalah followers support the band?

Carmen: Is not! You don’t have it yet?!  The physical EP can be bought in our bandcamp page, as well as “Kabbalah”, “Primitive Stone”, and t-shirts. We also sell patches and beer at the shows. And of course, you can also purchase our digital albums. Share our music and attend to the shows is the best support.

The album has a clear and heavy sound, in which conditions did you record it?

Carmen: Guillermo F. Mutiloa recorded and mixed it. He is a friend with a big room and a basic equipment, but with a very good taste and a very helpful attitude. Considering that we recorded the previous ones by ourselves, this has been pretty fancy.

You and Marga started in the band Las Culebras, and I see that this band was pretty popular for underground outfit. What can you tell about it?

Carmen: I actually started playing with a couple of bands before Las Culebras, but met Marga there. I joined them after their first LP, and together we released two more. We played a lot through Spain and also in France, Portugal and England, and it was great as a band experience.

Why did you decide to quite from Las Culebras?

Carmen: After several years we just decided it was the time to put it an end. One of the guitar players took the decision of leaving, and we all decided to not continue. We all wanted to explore our own musical ways.

What was on your mind when you compose first songs for Kabbalah? Did you already have a complete vision of Kabbalah?

Carmen: Marga and I had the vision of Kabbalah while being in Las Culebras. We didn’t know the band’s name yet, but we knew we wanted a 3 people band, and a classic and dark sound. I composed a couple of songs at the very beginning, gave them to Marga, and we developed them together. She did the same afterwards, and we continued joining pieces of songs that we both were composing. I believe we had in mind to do whatever we wanted to do, feeling absolutely free, with that sound we wanted for the band.

Heavy bands usually exploit darker aspect of Kabalistic teachings - lower sephirots, images of qliphoth and so on. How does this teaching inspire you? What do you take from it?

Carmen: When we came out with the name Kabbalah, if felts natural to exploit the dark aspects of it. It just came in a natural way, without thinking too much about it. All occult and dark things inspire us.

Okay, so what are songs from “Revelations” about?

Carmen: I see now that you don’t have the physical EP, as the lyrics are on it ;) I think they match the music; dark music, dark lyrics.

Marga: We explore the darkest side of the mind: nightmares, madness and paranoid are usual topics, as well as paranormal and unexplained events related to death and evilness. Kitties or sunny days are not welcome in Kabbalah, of course.

Kabbalah – The Darkness of Time

Did I get it right that Kabbalah worked as duet till 2015 when you met Alba?

Carmen: We started as a duet at the very beginning, but looking for a guitarist to join us. We recorded our first EP with Roberto, and after he left we continued rehearsing and looking for a replacement. It didn’t seem an easy task, as we wanted a very specific sound and style. Finally German arrived, and he fitted very well into the band. We recorded “Primitive Stone” with him, toured, and started with the songs for our next release, “Revelations”.

He had to leave due to job issues, and we continued rehearsing just the two of us for quite a long time, until Alba answered to a guitar request we did on Facebook. We tried a couple of songs with her, and she’s been with us since that moment. We were about to loose all faith on finding someone suitable, but the waiting has been worth it.

Your music sometimes described as occult rock, how do you understand this term?

Carmen: I really don’t understand it, I can’t describe it.. but I can recognize it when I hear it.

Marga: It includes ethereal and subjective concepts far away from the common reasoning. As the word itself, “occult”, is something secret, maybe magical, that you can’t see, you can’t touch… but you can feel listening to our music.

What are your requirement to band's sound? What do you usually seek to extract from your instruments?

Carmen: We want a loud, classic and dark sound. We go for kind of a “primitive” sound. Doom and loud.

Marga: We are always looking for a sound that makes us feel like we were playing in a funeral, in a cave or in hell.

How would you resume Kabbalah activity till nowadays? What did you gain for this period?

Carmen: Well.. we’ve been active, making songs, rehearsing.. even when we didn’t have a guitar player, touring , releasing our songs.. And all has been a great experience so far. But I think the best is yet to come.

What are your plans consider Kabbalah full length record? Do you already have material and inspiration for it?

Carmen: We like the idea of releasing 4 songs EP. You have something new sooner, and don’t have to wait so long between one recording and another. We are producing new material all the time, and we are full of inspiration. A full length record might be, in the future.

Marga: By the moment, we want to have a new EP recorded before the end of this year. We are already working on it.

I know only one band from your region that plays similar stuff, it is Misty Grey. Did you ever play with them? With which bands do you usually share the stage?

Carmen: I see that they are form Madrid. We don’t know them. We have shared the stage with Cabalgata Cósmica, and with DoctoR DooM so far, but most of the times we have played alone.

How does Spain cultural legacy influence on Kabbalah songs?

Marga: It’s not easy to point a clear influence or to choose a handful of them as an example. We could say that we love Goya’s Black Paintings or that we are interested in the history of the witches and the Spanish Inquisition. Another great fact is that Spain has a lot of very well preserved medieval cathedrals as Burgos or Leon, and beautiful cemeteries which we like to visit when we are touring: they are very inspiring. Spain cultural legacy has its lights and shadows, and we are in the shadow team.

Thank you for your time ladies! It was pleasure to talk, so how would you like to finish our interview? Do you have few more words of occult wisdom for our readers?

Carmen: Thank you for the interview!

Marga: Dear readers: Kabbalah is leaving the shadows just to get to a darker place. Come with us.

Words by Aleks Evdokimov and Kabbalah


Interview with Virginia from Psychedelic Witchcraft

Starting out as a promising solo project, Psychedelic Witchcraft turned to be an actual and active full time band. It was raised by Virginia Monti on the fertile soil of Italian Tuscany region, the land where mysterious work “Aradia, the Gospel of the Witches” was written. The band inspired by ancient occult traditions and classic psychedelic blues rock (or doom rock if you prefer) produced EP “Black Magic Man” about a year ago. 

This record demonstrates that Virginia and her crew are able to compose strong rocking tunes with lot of hooks and bloody impressive guitar work; and their first album “The Vision” soon will be released on Soulseller Records. Virginia, the one who writes the rules of Psychedelic Witchcraft, is here to shed some light on her creation.

Ciao Virginia! How are you? What's going on in the world of Psychedelic Witchcraft?

Hello there! What can I say, we’re trying to live the dream and have loads of fun.

And how it comes out?

It’s like a roller-coaster, sometimes it’s good and easy while other times you have to work constantly everyday. We do what we love and we hope that people like what we do!

The band is pretty young, so I wonder how long did its image develop in your mind and how do you see it now?

It’s pretty insane because everything is happening so fast. I remember last year when I posted “Angela” song on YouTube, I did it just for fun and I didn’t expect such a good reaction from the metal community. I feel really blessed by the gods ‘cause I found such amazing guys that share my vision and to play my music with. I think the image I had in my mind was always there but came out in the right time I guess.

Speaking about psychedelic component of your music I guess that we could find some influences in rock scene of '70s. But from where do you draw doom elements to enrich your songs? I know that Psychedelic Witchcraft doesn’t belong to original doom metal scene, but somehow people correlate it with your band.

That’s pretty strange to me because I never thought about doom music when I was writing the songs but I think that many people relate my music with doom because of the occult factor and my passion for horror movies.

I wouldn’t say I share the music with doom, I would rather say I share the vision of the music together with doom.

Psychedelic Witchcraft – Black Magic Man

Psychedelic Witchcraft often labeled as occult rock band, and this genre became a sort of revelation for last few years. But how do you see occult side of your music? It is a very broad term, so what is it for you? Is it about old school horror movies, Crowley occult teachings, just acid ‘70s parties or something else?

I think that actually it is everything from the ‘70s mixed together. The occult has been a major part of my life since I was a little girl. I’ve always been into esoteric stuff since the beginning my life (from Paganism to Crowley). I think that magic has always been my own path since I was born and of course I’ve always been a huge fan of Horror Movies for the same reasons basically. When I started to write my first song I just wanted to be honest with myself and Occult seems to be the most natural theme to me.

Italian horror and “giallo” movies are separated cinematographic genre; do you prefer it or American or British cinema?

British! I’m a big fan of Hammer Movies. I also like American movies but since I’m European I feel more connected to the British scene; I’ve been in England many, many times, it’s one of my favorite places to visit.

I really like British horror movies, especially the ones from the ‘60s - ’70s because of the classy taste you see on screen. I.e. one of my favorite is called “The Devil Rides Out” featuring Christopher Lee. As you can see when he talks about the devil in the movie, he talks about that in such a classy and subtle way. I really like the entire occult vibes that comes out the British movies.

What did form your interest to occultism? I heard it from few bands that religious environment during their childhood literally pushed them to rock music.

My passion for the occultism starts in my childhood, basically right after I open my eyes. Not because my parents were extremely religious but because my mom was very attracted by the occult as well and she bought me books about magic since I was a kid.

Then I kept reading‘em and those books became a part of me. I guess I’m part of a generation of witches lol.

Your songs are catchy and melodic, there are a lot of hooks and rocking vibes, so it is easy to explain Psychedelic Witchcraft success from this point. How do you think what does attract people in bands scenic image?

I really don’t know lol. I just made the music I would have liked to listen to and I’m still very overwhelmed by all the reactions of the people ; at the same time I don’t feel I’m having some kind of success, I feel rather like in a beginning of a journey and it’s a really long way.

Still we have a long way to prove that we’re here to stay and that our music has some kind of values and I’m sure time will tell.

The first full length album “The Vision” is to be released in spring by Soulseller Records. Do you already have the date of release? And will it be released both on CD and vinyl at time?

We don’t have a precise release date yet but we think it is going to be released in April both on CD and Vinyl, with an amazing artwork from Branca Studio.

Psychedelic Witchcraft – Witches Arise

Virginia, did you record it by yourself or this time you work together with other musicians?

I worked with my band-mates, they made this project real and they made me improve a lot as a musician. You’ll definitely hear from the album that the sound is grown so much from the EP. I couldn’t be here if it wasn’t for my band-mates.

How long did you work over the album? Can you share details of this record session?

Recordings were crazy. I wrote the album in a really short time (about 2 weeks) and I made my band-mates learn the songs and arrange them for the band and I pushed these guys so hard.

I made them record the album in only 2 days because I wanted to maintain the honesty and the genuinity of the sound, the feeling that You have when You play a song once and You actually feel it from the beginning to end.

I’d like to ask you about other members who practice Psychedelic Witchcraft with you – what’s band’s current lineup? And how do you share your responsibilities composing and recording songs? As I understand you are the author of all songs from “Black Magic Man” EP.

Yea that’s true. I’m the writer of most of the songs (new stuff too) and I’m the writer of lots of riffs and basically all the lyrics. What’s different now it’s my work with Riccardo, my bass player. I write the songs and he brings the songs to life taking out of my head all the sounds and vibes I’m looking for. Luckily he can always understand what I want to do and he always agrees lol.

After we build the song, we discuss it with the whole band, and I push them to put their style in everything they’re playing; I want them to be themselves and to be honest with the music they’re playing. I just put the basics.

This is the actual Line-up so far:

Virginia Monti - Vocals
Riccardo Giuffrè - Bass
Jacopo Fallai - Guitar
Mirko Buia - Drums

You already uploaded new song “Magic Hour Blues” on Psychedelic Witchcraft Facebook page, can we suppose that it give a general idea of how the new album sounds?

Actually no. “Magic Hour Blues” is a bonus track we added at last. It’s the last track of the album and might be more an introduction to the second album we’re going to record pretty soon.

“Magic Hour Blues” is one of the softest tracks of the album. “The Vision” is actually full of energy and fire because my vision was to make 4 albums, each one representing the four elements of the pentacle (Earth, Air, Fire, Water) and since Fire was the first element born after the Akasha, “The Vision” represents the fire : pure energy, passion and strong will.

Well, so you already have in mind concept of the next record, is it so detailed or you have a general vision connected with one of elements?

Of course, every album will reveal the different aspects of the elements. “The Vision”, as I told you before, is full of energy. It’s our first album and it contains all the energy we have as musicians and as a band. That’s the fire I’d say. With the second album, we’re digging into our souls.

It’s more intimate, it haves more bluesy sounds and heavy songs as well. It’s not a rush though, it’s an intimate conversation between us and the music. The second should represent Air as it is strictly bond to our mental and creative processes.

Psychedelic Witchcraft – Magic Hour Blues

Do you plan to support new album with tour in Italy or outside the country? What's your touring experience?

We’re doing loads of dates in Italy and we’re talking about a European tour with a doom band but I can’t reveal more now, we’ll see.

We could say that occult rock has its roots in UK and USA, as Italian scene always had its own features - famous progressive rock or so called Italian Dark Sound. Can you tell about local influences in your music?

Basically the only influences that I have from my country are progressive rock bands from the ‘70s. Bands like “Osanna”, “Circus 2000”, “Il Biglietto per l’Inferno”, “Il balletto di Bronzo” and so on. Don’t forget that I come from Tuscany, the land of Aradia, the first witch.

Are you talking about “Aradia, or the Gospel of the Witches” book? I read that origin of this book is blurred and some researches have doubts about it. How did you firstly meet it?

I know! It’s a legend and it isn’t probably true, was just teasing yea! :)

Anyway I don’t remember if I bought it or if I just found it at home. She just represents the first witch, the feminine, the power you have inside and the strong will. For me it’s then a honor that the legend was based in my homeland! Music is magic, stories are magic and sometimes it’s not important whether they’re true or not; what really counts is what those stuff make you feel and if you want to believe in it.

I think that most of us believe that when the girl sings in the band, everything spins around her and she's general driver of the band. And it's known that the band started as your solo project. Did something change in your vision of Psychedelic Witchcraft as the band?

Well, it changed because I didn’t want to be alone and it was a solo project just because I didn’t find anyone that shared my vision. When I found my band-mates everything changed and I couldn’t see Psychedelic Witchcraft as a solo project anymore. You grow up both as a musician and as a person and I don’t want to do this journey alone and I want do make music for the rest of my life as long as we carry on together.

I read that you got few proposals from labels right after recording your very first song “Angela”, what's about fans? You’re showy lady in the best sense of the word, so how often do you get recognition from fans?

Most of the time they write me/us a lot. I’m always happy to answer anybody and to share when they send me their Art or Music. Most of our fans are musicians as well and I really think that we’re all equal so I’m very happy to listen and discover new music and of course to share it then I like it. In the end, I’m here talking to you because of the people so I’ll be forever grateful for what they are doing.

I know that you also took part in another musical project besides Psychedelic Witchcraft, what's it status?

What? I’m not aware of this lol. Who told you that? I could have a twin in another country ha-ha : )

Let me think… I read it some of your interviews about a year ago (in Sludgelord maybe) – you or your twin was telling that you plan to take part in another band, but there was nothing certain on that moment. So I don’t force you to give a positive answer : )

I’d like to see that! I really don’t remember lol. If I said that (which is kind of very improbable) I was probably drunk or something. Lol.

What are your ambitions consider spreading Psychedelic Witchcraft over the world?

I just want to have this album out, record the second one and go on tour, then make music for all my life. I know that’s a pretty big ambition though. :)

Words by Aleks Evdokimov and Virginia Monti