Temple of the Fuzz Witch by Temple of the Fuzz Witch
Quality American doom metal is something few and far between, seemingly. Invented, pioneered, constructed, bred, & burnt at the stake across Europe; doom metal never really seemed to find its stride here in the Americas, because unlike Bruce Springsteen it was NOT born in the USA. Solid American doom metal is something out of mythology, requiring years of experience in the field of heavy metal archeology to extract it. But, perhaps, much like the great American myths of our culture… Bigfoot, Cthulhu, anorexic green beings with emotionless black eyes starving for human abduction, Chupacarbas, a good Guns n Roses album after Appetite For Destruction; American doom metal might not be such a myth after all, rather, its just finds time to record in between bong rips with Cthulhu amongst the shadows within an ancient temple… TEMPLE OF THE FUZZ WITCH. DOOM from the D. And when I say D, I mean D, as in Deee-triot, Rock-Motha-Fuckin-City. Except this time, The Fuzz in Detroit are not here to harsh our mellow by inciting riots, issue citations for drug use or rocking too hard and disturbing the peace.. oh, HELL no. This kind of Fuzz is here to celebrate those things with open arms and open coffins whilst bringing back classic doom heaviness from America’s greatest breeding ground for all things loud and heavy with a raw power that more than played a helping fist in knocking punk rock into existence… makes sense there would be a modern doom band emerging from these mists, right? We’ll go with that. If you dare to endure the deafening bass tones and droning Sabbathian riffs of darkness whilst being enchanted by witch’s spells of heavy metal solitude and rapture… enter: Temple of the Fuzz Witch.
Before we go any further I just want to make it clear what to expect from this record: doom at its finest, purest, and simplest; ladies and gentlemen. Temple of the Fuzz Witch are not here to reinvent the wheel by any warping of the imagination, I’m afraid; just here to give us unforgiving raw doom and groovy heavy metal full of enough feedback, fuzz, and droning power chords to banish the living to dust and despair. And emphasis on definitely NOT holding back the heaviness though, beware, this is no standard issue stoner rock band. TOTFW play heavy fucking metal, and they’ll let you know it. Have a taste of the riff power that radiates from “The Glowing of Satan” and see who’s still standing with all their bones and organs in the right places. And with that you’ll see this is not just another pure Electric Wizard rip-off band, as they achieve such a raw almost punk rock element (in spirit and vibe, not NECESSARILY song structure or sound-wise) to their heaviness and authenticity to their playing really distinguish this one from the rest. Thats not to say, however, there are not some moments of redundancy here and there… but I’d say that’s the nature of the beast with doom metal records, anyway. The songs are not going to break any records in length or composition either, as far as this genre goes especially. Rather, TOTFW provides pretty straight for your jugular metal tunes with a lethal hook, nothing to fancy to impress any hipster enthusiast (guilty) out there, but that’s what makes it kind of really goddamn (pun intended) cool. It makes it all the more powerful experience while, of course, having groovier and slower-for-the-ladies bits of psychedelic heathenism. It’s all in all, a really nicely balanced witches’ brew in the cauldron of doom metal that can feel a little jaded at times, which is why I’m beyond down with the Temple of the Fuzz Witch for spicing up the vibe.
Apart from the sounds and production in general, the instrumentation is also very good… Tighter than hell. Solid. Simple. Purposeful. There’s your hard hitting doom metal recipe right there, and The Fuzz has got it down to the bones. “329”, for example, is a tune that just will not stop rattling your skull with stomping and shattering percussion and bass deeper than voids of the underworld. It’s killer as all hell, while very much living it a simple, here I go again with “punk” spirit all while spewing heavy metal vibes of the ages. It’s a hypnotic trip into the lurking and oozing depths of hell, on acid, which is basically the definition of doom metal anyways. The guitar tone is absolutely immaculate, as any proper devil worshipping music is equipped with: along with the drifting and hazy vocals that again work together to establish that raw and chaotic vibe that is lost amongst a lot of doom records. The vocal works in some songs like a haunting entity, concealing itself in the shadows created by the heavy instrumentation, meddling among the feedback and distortion. Other times, such as in the epitaph “Servants of the Sun”, the lyrics “We are dead, we are fucking dead” beautiful and eerily take the spotlight amongst the warped guitar section. In my estimation, the production this record has a lot going for it in the sense that it is far from perfect, which reinforces that “dangerous” vibe of the music. Temple of the Fuzz Witch sounds like it was indeed tracked in a lonesome haunted cathedral.. or Detroit, I guess. Either way, that atmosphere pollutes the record in the best way, making this an essential doom release of this year and one HELL of a debut record. They know what they’re doing and they do it quite fucking well.
Gym Rating: 3.5/5
Worship the Witch right here: