Album Review: Witchery – I Am Legion

By Francisco Zamudio

Breaking through two decades is not an easy task by any means for any band. We wish some would cash in their check and get lost, versus those short-lived great bands that only put out a couple of albums every handful of years and are never heard from again. Then you have some that had spread their seed over time, leaving an impression that needs to be filled. The whole time not realizing how much your fans are craving your unique sound, and a sound you helped develop since the late ’90s. And since then, one of the lesser known groups (I feel), Witchery have helped carve and pushed their way through with a blackened sound bleeding over the thrash and speed metal style. All while maintaining their sound, they have still evolved with the times and nearly managed to keep its lineup intact. Witchery’s longstanding trinity consists of bassist Sharlee D’Angelo, guitarists Rikard Rimfält and Jensen. Now they return with sophomores Angus Norder on vocals and Chris Barkensjö on drums. And in doing so, breaking tradition of releasing an album every handful of years, having just released the year-old ‘In His Infernal Majesty’s Service’, Witchery havenow  unleashed only their 7th full-length album to date, ‘I Am Legion’.

‘I Am Legion’ is laced with crispy and crunchy guitar tones and a lot of attitude from slower tempo, groove-oriented melodies, intertwined with thrashing riffs and solos keeping the listener heavily hooked. Starting with the song ‘True North’, giving you that eerie “The Exorcist”- like vibe, the first few songs ease you with a lot of dark groove, sucking you in with mid-tempo beats, teasing some for the faster pace action soon to come.

Releasing you into the frenzy is the song ‘Amun-Ra’ that is totally pit-worthy. You have the hap-hazard tune ‘Seraphic Terror’ that ruptures from the get-go. Although it still carries the dark and spooky blackened vibe, for the most part, it carries on an almost “Death and Roll” style (see later Entombed) with mid-tempo rhythms and not enough of the thrash style I was hoping for. With 11 tracks to imbibe, it just gets by well enough not to lose your interest. Do yourself a favor and get the full 13-song DigiPak version, as the bonus songs help bring the tone up to a heavier and faster feel. What you’ll take away from this album is the great audio quality that is captured here by Daniel Bergstrand and George Nerantzis of Dug Out Studio. It really helped this album gain more attitude with its very familiar sound that is surprisingly great to hear coming from a different band. Just listen and you’ll know what I mean.

Rating: 8/10

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Record Label: Century Media
Release Date: November 10th 2017

Track Listing:
01. Legion (1:14)
02. True North (4:08)
03. Welcome, Night (3:55)
04. Of Blackened Wing (4:17)
05. Dry Bones (3:59)
06. Amun-Ra (3:30)
07. Seraphic Terror (3:35)
08. A Faustian Deal (3:41)
09. An Unexpected Guest (4:06)
10. Great Northern Plague (1:49)
11. The Alchemist (5:35)
12. Ragnarok (3:48)
13. Apex Ghoul (4:02)

Total Duration: 47:39

Witchery links: facebook