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If you only listen to one Christian trad metal album this week, make it Wytch Hazel’s III: Pentecost

Wytch Hazel serve up songs of faith and devotion on instant-classic new album III: Pentecost

Wytch Hazel - Pentecost III
(Image: © Bad Omen)

Precision songcraft isn’t necessarily the highest priority in heavy metal.  A good headbanging riff, a neat solo and a half-catchy chorus will get a band a long way if they’re performed with skill, conviction, energy, passion and atmosphere. Lancastrian trad metallers Wytch Hazel have bucketloads of these, but the 10 songs on this third LP – running the gamut from insistent floor-fillers, windswept epics and spine- tingling stomps to mystical ballads, jubilant gallopers and wistful singalongs – are uncommonly beautifully wrought. Each song is piled high with quadruple-tracked guitar melodies, honed into optimum shape and given richness and weight with a clean, classy, Martin Birch-style production job. Even dressed like wood-dwelling medieval Samaritans and singing lyrics exclusively on devotional Christian themes, Wytch Hazel’s knack for an infectious, emotionally charged tune makes them one of the coolest bands around.

Chris has been writing about heavy metal since 2000, specialising in true/cult/epic/power/trad/NWOBHM and doom metal at now-defunct extreme music magazine Terrorizer. Since joining the Metal Hammer famileh in 2010 he developed a parallel career in kids' TV, winning a Writer's Guild of Great Britain Award for BBC1 series Little Howard's Big Question as well as writing episodes of Danger Mouse, Horrible Histories, Dennis & Gnasher Unleashed and The Furchester Hotel. His hobbies include drumming (slowly), exploring ancient woodland and watching ancient sitcoms.