Tuesday 31 January 2017

Dead Witches - Ouija (Album Review)

Release date: February 10th 2017. Label: Heavy Psych Sounds. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

Ouija – Tracklisting

1. Intro
2. Dead
3. Drawing Down The Moon
4. Ouija
5. Mind Funeral
6. A World of Darkness

Band Members

Virginia Monti-Vocals
Mark Greening-assault and battery
Carl Geary-Bass
Greg Elk-guitar


This is a slightly bitter sweet experience for me.

As he was to many people Greg Elk was a friend of mine. I played shows with both of his previous bands HighElf and Goatthrone and shared many a drink and many a daft story, and like everyone else who knew him I'm deeply saddened he's no longer with us. Where ever you are Greg I hope you're in a better place and I hope there are no sideways drums. Especially with your reputation....

It all started last year with a few little teaser trailers of a new band emerging on the south coast and to begin with all we had was a name. Dead Witches...

Once we knew the band was the brainchild of Virginia Monti and the prolific Mark Greening we knew we were in safe hands.

The record starts with an ominous intro, rain, a Hammond organ and the first of many rumbling bass lines (supplied by Carl Geary) as haunting feedback peels out of the speakers and fades away into the first proper track the bluntly titled "Dead"

A lone guitar brings us in, followed by some of that trademark Greening swagger and then the powerful and soulful vocals of Monti propel the track along.

The next couple of tracks "Drawing Down The Moon" and the excellent "Ouija" follow a similar vein. Huge blues' tinged riffs and some great little solos emphasise the really strong song writing on this album as well.

"Mind Funeral" (the first full track to be publicly aired) is next up and whilst it got the same qualities as the preceding track's it's just a bit nastier. A bit heavier. And a little bit more spiteful. I love it. It's certainly my favourite song on the record.

The album closes with "A World Of Darkness" which retains the heavier and nastier vibe of "Mind Funeral" starting and closing with a lone drumbeat.

Dead Witches have released a bold and confident first record that's quite rightly going to tick a lot of boxes for fans of occult tinged doom. What the band will do next, I'm not sure but I do hope this isn't the last we hear from them as I feel this is only the start of something that's going to get better.

Words by Simon Ross Williams

Thanks to Claire at Purple Sage PR for the promo. Ouija will be available to buy via Heavy Psych Sounds on CD/DD/Vinyl from February 10th 2017.