Pim B. : Who would have thought that a new studio album from Witchfinder General sees the light of day 25 years after their last effort 'Friends of Hell'? I certainly didn't! For those who are not familiar with this act from Stourbridge in the UK here's a short history lesson. Formed in 1979 Witchfinder General clearly belongs to the New Wave Of British heavy Metal. As this wave isn't about a particular style but more so a period where the popularity of heavy metal performed by British bands took over the music business it needs to be said that Witchfinder General were one of the few bands that played music we now call doom metal. Of course Black Sabbath was a huge influence. With only a few releases, the 'Death Penalty' and 'Friends of Hell' full-lengths, the 7” singles 'Burning A Sinner' and 'Music' and the 12” 'Soviet Invasion' and several songs on compilations the band did make an impact. However, not being able to secure a new deal, although an album was written, the band folded in 1984.
Last year the interest in Witchfinder General returned when a live album called 'Live '83' was released as a cooperation between Buried By Time And Dust Records and Nuclear War Now! Productions. What was even more interesting was the fact that the band reformed with members of the last known line-up Phil Cope (guitars), Derm Redmond (drums) and Rod Hawkes (bass). Unfortunately vocalist Zeeb Parkes wasn't included as he was quite essential to the Witchfinder General sound, but in Gaz Martin they have found a new front man.
So in this line-up they recorded 'Resurrected' which consists of material that was written in 1984 and that's just the way this album sounds. Concerning the recording you can clearly hear the band has made sure the album sounds authentic. No overdubs or anything like that, just the classic way of recording an album. You could discuss whether they could have used modern technique to make the album sound more up to date, but with sounding as authentic as possible I assume most fans of Witchfinder General's material from the 80's will dig this album too. I guess most fans might need some time to get used to Gaz Martin's vocal style as he does sound different compared to Zeeb. Still I think his vocals will grow on most fans. Perhaps the fact the vocals might have been mixed a bit too upfront will take some time to get used to 'Resurrected', I would have preferred the vocals a bit more to the background. Phil Cope's riffs are simply great and listening to this album will take you back to the early 80's for sure. This is classic doom metal and I can only recommend this album to anyone who claims to like doom. Yes, it's good to see Wichfinder General back in form.