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Witchsorrow - "God Curse Us" (CD)

Witchsorrow - "God Curse Us" CD cover image

"God Curse Us" track listing:

1. Aurora Atra (8:54)
2. God Curse Us (8:00)
3. Masters Of Nothing (9:19)
4. Ab Antiquo (2:16)
5. Megiddo (10:43)
6. Breaking The Lore (4:42)
7. Den Of Serpents (12:02)

Reviewed by on July 13, 2012

"It’s not a hair-raising experience, but 'God Curse Us' is right about on par with their self-titled release."

There was plenty of praise to pass around with Witchsorrow’s self-titled debut. Traditional doom in the style of top-tier acts like Electric Wizard, the album crawled into the skin of listeners and kept residence there for a while. Their second album, “God Curse Us,” isn’t far removed from their previous output. While the songs on the first album churned like the rusty wheels of an old Grandfather clock, “God Curse Us” puts some grease on the wheels to make a slick mess.

This mess comes when the band snaps out of the lumbering gloom the double-digit endeavors start out in. Right when there’s only a few minutes left, they decide to throw off the song with a power-keg of momentum. That’s unlike how the five songs on the debut evolved, as they stuck to a crawling wreck of precise rhythm and echoing guitars. “Masters of Nothing” is the lone wolf of this philosophy on “God Curse Us,” and would have fit on their previous record.

“Ab Antiquo” and “Breaking The Lore” buck the obvious patterns Witchsorrow gets caught in. The former is an eerie interlude, featuring clean guitars and individual piano notes that reverberate with the power of a hammer smash. The latter is the fastest song the band has written to date, with the authority to get people out of their state of forlorn the album situates itself in.

The Witchsorrow trio stays tightly bound, even with a new drummer, David Wilbrahammer, in the ranks. Nick “Necroskull” Ruskell tries out harsher vocals in the uptempo moments, a mixed bag that doesn’t hit as hard as his soaring moans. His solos get pretty wild at times, though the rest of the guitar work is subdued. The same goes for bassist Emily Witch and Wilbrahammer, who both keep time, but don’t shine over the music.

“God Curse Us” is the next move for Witchsorrow in their natural progression. There’s an apparent lack of surprises beyond the first half of the album, save for the punch-in-the-face of “Breaking The Lore.” That would normally be a crippling affliction on the replay value, but it’s only a minor nuisance because of how good Witchsorrow is at traditional doom. It’s not a hair-raising experience, but “God Curse Us” is right about on par with their self-titled release.

Highs: Band kicks the pace up at appropriate times, a few twists in their sound keeps things fresh, band sounds great with the new drummer involved

Lows: Not much of an extension from their last album, the harsher vocals are a mixed bag

Bottom line: A sophomore record about on par with their last one, "God Curse Us" should satisfy fans of slow-burning doom.

Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls
3.5 out of 5 skulls

Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)