The WYTCHES – ” Crying Clown “

Posted: February 9, 2017 in MUSIC

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Two-thirds of the band The Wytches are in a metaphysical boutique in front of some very anatomically correct candles when lead singer Kristian Bell says that occult stuff actually makes him kind of uncomfortable. I am secretly relieved that the tarot reader on call is not available to do a reading for the guys, as I have obviously misjudged where the Brighton-based band’s interests lie. Bell’s assertion comes as kind of a shock, as the band’s debut LP, Annabel Dream Reader, was full of references to pendulums, gravedwellers and, most terrifyingly, crying clowns — but it’s a darkness, it turns out, that the band tempers with self-awareness and humor.

“It’s supposed to be taken with a pinch of salt,” Bell recently told MTV News, standing in front of a rack of tarot cards (a deck of which he later bought for his girlfriend). “We like to be quite deliberate about how dark it is because then that makes it funny for us. The theme — the lyrical theme — is always quite sad or whatever. You kind of put it on this big platform and make it this big grand and destructive song — it’s just funny to us.”

Listening to the record, however, is anything but funny. Since forming in college in 2011, the band has been consistently putting out tunes that sound something like Nirvana’s Bleach,

Bell and drummer Gianni Honey had previously played in bands together when they were younger, but they found bassist Rumsey by posting a flier up at school for their “dark grunge surf lounge” band. Several EPs and a contract with Partisan Records later, and the description morphed into the term “surf doom,” .

The phrase, however tongue-in-cheek, is fitting, though. Bell is really into doom metal and likes the way surf rock sounds when slowed down to the creepy point — it sounds violent, he said. And kind of evil. Consequently, Annabel Dream Reader teeters on the edge of hard, but is replete with enough catchy choruses and screamable one-liners (see: “You sit there and laugh while my dignity collapses” in “Wireframe Mattress”) to make it palatable to those who don’t dig metal.


Thanks to Overlooked,

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