New wave of British heavy metal, indeed.
Last May, Witchcurse released an EP entitled Still Evil. It's got two songs, "I'm No Fool," and "Way of Life."
Witchcurse embodies the NWOBHM sound unabashedly, and they don't do too bad at it either. It could be really bad--they could have made it really corny--but the instrumentation is really good. The guitarists are awesome, whipping out lots of solos and single-string harmonies without caking on the distortion. They bring out some really cool Thin Lizzy, Iron Maiden, and Black Sabbath-style rhythms.
The drums and the vocals are cool, too. This album totally could have been released twenty or thirty years ago and it would have sounded right in place with the direction metal was going back then. I recommend this EP to all fans of the old school metal sound. It's not anything near death metal, or emo metal, but has a lot in common with thrash metal with the awesome solos. And thrash metal takes a lot from the British new wave metal sound, so it makes sense.
Too often with modern metal, the vocals and the lead guitar are mixed way above the rest of the band. Not so here. Still Evil was mixed just the way I like it. No one instrument is dominant over another. Even when the solos are flailing, the rhythm guitar and bass are still audible. A good mix is integral to a good album. Properly done, the result sounds like a band working together. Still Evil has a true band-working-together sound.
The vocalist doesn't autotune or try to sound overly emotional, either. He's got a good singing voice, and he doesn't bother with screaming. Finally! It's pure. I'm a fan. This is good metal. It's not showboaty, but it's not played by amateurs, either. These guys know what they're doing, and they know what sound they want to achieve. It may seem a little boring to fans of more modern metals, but as we all know, modern metal sucks. And Still Evil sounds straight out of the 70's. This is metal that I can listen to when my wife and kids are hanging around, even though the album cover isn't family friendly at all.
Oh, and I love that album cover. Truly awesome. Black, white and red, with skulls, witch zombies, and a pair of titties.
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