Witchcraft’s Black Metal: the opposite of what it says on the tin

Ex-doomsters Witchcraft swap amps for acoustic guitars on misfiring new album Black Metal

(Image: © Nuclear Blast)

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In 1982, at the peak of his commercial success, Bruce Springsteen surprised everybody with Nebraska, a collection of rough-sounding acoustic demos where he poured out his heart in some of his most poignant material ever. If that’s what Witchcraft – or in this specific case its sole member here Magnus Pelander – had in mind with this folly is unclear but then again, it’s been the case with Witchcraft ever since their original line-up imploded just before the Legend album eight years ago. What we have here, hidden under a very misleading title, are seven songs solely performed by his echo-laden voice and one acoustic guitar. Totally detached emotionally speaking and even more minimalist than the 2016 folkish set, Time – although that EP was released under his own name to add to the confusion – there’s very little of substance here to hang on to.