Album Review: Midnight - Let There Be Witchery
Reviewed by Ewan Gibb
Midnight is the work of a multi-instrumentalist, Athenar. Every note, chord, crash, hit, and vomit on 'Let There Be Witchery' was committed to tape (hard drive?) by this lone individual. Frankly, it's a formidable piece of work coming from just one person. All instruments are determinedly performed, bringing the level of verve required for a convincing Rock'n'Roll driven Speed Metal act.
Midnight play Black Metal from a parallel universe where Venom's 'Black Metal' itself defined the genre's orthodoxy, rather than just gifting it its name and stylistic pointers (as opposed to our universe where let's face it, the Black Metal orthodoxy was defined by Bathory's 'Under the Sign of the Black Mark'... Well, the second wave at least). It is course proto-Thrash, with a decidedly Motorhead-swagger, wailing Fast Eddie pentatonic solos and all. Athenar's feral and possessed vocal delivery tops it all off brilliantly. The performance here would make Cronos proud, I'm sure.
There's a good spread of material to digest on 'Let There Be Witchery' (the band's fifth album and second for Metal Blade). The opener, 'Telepathic Nightmare, ' screams out of the traps like something off Voivod's 'Killing Technology', were those Canadians obsessed with horror and the occult rather than dystopian Sci-Fi. 'More Torment' brings chunky, tortured Celtic Frost style riffing alongside the straighter (and more common) Motorhead inspired sections. 'Villainy, Wretched Villainy' adds harmony guitars for extra fun, and 'Szex Witchery' shamelessly and gleefully channels Diamond Head's 'Helpless', to name but a few notable examples.
For up-tempo, unpretentious head-banging goodness, you can't go far wrong with 'Let There Be Witchery' (and Midnight in general, for that matter). Best served with a cold beer and your air guitar at the ready.