Saturday, November 23, 2013

Album Review; Ancient Warlocks by Ancient Warlocks

This review comes with great anticipation. It seems like just yesterday I was doing a little write up on Seattle's own Ancient Warlocks for both The Soda Shop and Heavy Planet. In fact, it was almost 3 years ago. They've been a band I've followed waiting and waiting for a release. A few singles and a live split 45 later, the debut album was announced seemingly out of left field by Lay Bare Recordings. Finally!

So, was it worth the nearly 3 year wait? In a nutshell, yes. Most certainly. What is the album like? Well if you've heard the demos and single releases, you have a good idea of Ancient Warlocks sound. For those of you who are just discovering this band, welcome. Pick your poison, turn the volume up and enjoy. First and foremost, Ancient Warlocks sound is a down tuned, dirty stoner rock with an obvious nod to bluesy and desert rock ala Kyuss. Don't mistake that statement as the band being a Kyuss rip off band or Kyuss wanna be. Far from it actually.

"Into The Night" opens the album. It's a familiar song as it was previously released as a 7". The song pretty much sets the tone for how the album is going to sound. The band doesn't stray from the sound that they're familiar with. They stick to their guns and those guns are firing left and right on all cylinders. The song is catchy, especially the opening riff. It's one of those tunes that's hard to get out of your head. Perfect for when you get that horrible 80's song that you heard playing in the supermarket stuck in your head. It's one of those songs that get you moving your head and shaking your body to the tune even if you don't consciously know it. That's not the only song that gets you going. Others like "Sweet's To Slow" and "Cactus Wine" are quite capable of doing it too. "Super Wizard," if I didn't know any better, is a homage to Black Sabbath, even if in a more spiritual way. The song is a bit more slower paced, it has a slower beat and seems to be a tad bit on the doomy side. "Killer's Moon" treads that line a bit too only not as doomy. The highlight for me also happens to be the closing song. "Sorcerer's Magician" is as every bit heavy and everything that has made the album great thus far is represented here. The instrumental at the end is killer. I love how it gets all bluesy at the end which is a nice little spin to it.

So was this album worth the long wait? A resounding "Hell yes!" comes from this reviewers lips. I'd say it was worth every second of every day that it took to get the album out. It's an album that needs to be listened to and experienced. It's full of energy that just consumes you. It's an album that can be enjoyed with or without your favorite vice. Personally I think it's great sober so don't go and get confused by the whole "stoner rock" part (although it probably wouldn't be bad while on it). The album should be out and available by time you read this through the new but great Lay Bare Recordings on both CD and vinyl.

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