Chuck Schuldiner Project

Wednesday, August 9, 2023

Witching - Incendium

US black metal is back and Witching are at the forefront. These Philadelphia underground freaks are back with some of their most aggressive, abrasive and skull melting work to date. Incendium thrills because of the wonderfully bleak nature of the music, stripped back production and sense that there is new hope to be found in the underground in America. Incendium is an ambitious album and one that clearly moves the band to a new place. Now as they gear up to tour Europe, Incendium seems like the perfect war cry and announcement of intent. 

The sludgy black metal stylings that define Incendium are a dramatic step up from the bands debut album Vernal. In three years Witching have clearly done a ton of maturing and now come across as a vicious and visionary group with a passion for crafting some of the grimmest possible sounds. The inhuman howls that ring out over monochromatic riffs on "A Grave Mistake" are emblematic of the album as a whole, which balances tortured screams with full throated clean vocals. The end result is a record that clearly pulls from old school black metal and sludge influences but manages to find a path to be its own thing and create a path that is wholly their own. 

I deeply enjoy the raw nature of Incendium and the way that the band has been able to express their frigid, unrepentant vision time and time again. This is a record that has a clear vision and finds ways to execute on it that remain fresh and interesting. The stripped back sounds and bleak nature of the music only serve to entrance listeners and speaks to the power of what they've cultivated here. Immerse yourself in these darkest of sounds and you will find there to be strangely rewarding sonic blasphemies aplenty. This is Philadelphia's sickest metal export in years.

Pre-order the album!

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