Ride With The Devil

Witching Altar

Have you ever felt like the music is making you numb and speechless at the […]
By V Srikar
August 12, 2016
Witching Altar - Ride With The Devil album cover

Have you ever felt like the music is making you numb and speechless at the same time? You are feeling teleported to some dark fairytale land? That can only be possible with Doom Metal and its variants. WITCHING ALTER, the 2 piece Doom Metal band from Brazil released their debut full length album "Ride With The Devil" last year and it does pack in a lot of meat in its 53 minutes action.

The journey starts with "Tower Of The Black Wizard" with sharp Doom laden mid-tempo riffs, and the usual heavy slow drum beats. But it's the unusual clean vocals of Witchlover that make such a big difference here. Heavily influenced by the likes of BLACK SABBATH, ELECTRIC WIZARD, CATHEDRAL, etc. WITCHING ALTAR's Doom is very infectious and very likeable for the seasoned Doom fans right away. The sound exuberates the 70s and 80s Rock feeling that is achieved by fast paced Doom boarding Stoner Metal. The occasional dialogues and speeches about Satan, Religion, Occult etc. in the middle amidst the haunting riffs makes the sound a real treat.  The longest song of the album "The Price We Pay" starts in a typical epic Doomy style reminiscent of SAINT VITUS and CATHEDRAL and continues with some slow haunting vocals and riffs. The ending part of the typical Doom riff, i.e. fast multiple tapping can be found in abundance in this song, as the song takes you to a different planet as is often the case with long Doom Metal songs. Interestingly after 6 minutes, the song turns into a Stoner/Hard Rock song as it becomes much faster in pace, and the vocals get louder and aggressive. "Son Of The Devil" starts with a very rusty guitar riff but soon turns into a typical hair lifting Doom Metal song with the thick heavy long riffs. The song has long passages of vocals and guitar work that is sure to be a treat for fans in the band's live shows. The guitar tapping and riffs with the drum beats in the background is nothing short of an eargasm. "Her Embrace" has a powerful elegance to the song, which fits right along with the song title and its lyrics. But it's the UNCLE ACID AND THE DEADBEATS style of start-stop riffs that really make this song so much juicier. "Unbreakble Witchcraft" has some excellent gang vocals that make the doomy eerie atmosphere even more eerie and occult-ish. "Everything Dies" is almost an emotional journey within itself as the song is a slow low-tempo track with almost prayer like vocals, mostly having lyrics about Satan and religion. The rightly named "Dopesmoke" is about marijuana, drugs and dope and for once the music takes second fiddle and is less than impressive, but the vocals does kick some ass. "Cromwell" is the ultimate party song for the Doom Metal fans. It does have shades of Stoner Metal in it, but still manages to keep the Doom flag up high, and the lads let themselves loose in this one. "Living Backwards" is one of the few disappointments in this album as it doesn't do anything for me, and sounds generic compared to the rest of the album. The album ends with an excellent song in "Relentless". It almost feels as if the lads set aside the best for the last. The riffs here are thick as Sludge Metal but still managing to blast the song fast enough to call it as a Doom song. The chorus gang vocals just work really great along with the juicy riffs. This is the best of what WITCHING ALTAR has to offer.

Driven by silky smooth clean vocals and haunting riffs of BLACK SABBATH, WITCHING ALTAR really takes you to a different world that is so often promised but failed in the Doom world. With a few cover songs towards the end, "Ride With The Devil" is an album that fans can point out and say that music hasn't really changed much in terms of any drastic changes. This is an excellent album for the seasoned fans of the Doom and Stoner genres.

9 / 10

Almost Perfect








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"Ride With The Devil" Track-listing:

1. Tower Of The Black Wizard
2. The Price We Pay
3. Son Of The Devil
4. Her Embrace
5. Unbreakble Witchcraft
6. Everything Dies
7. Dopesmoke
8. Cromwell (Reverend Bizarre Cover)
9. Living Backwards (Saint Vitus Cover)
10. Relentless (Pentagram Cover)

Witching Altar Lineup:

Peter Vitus - Guitars
Witchlover - Vocals, Bass

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