I went into Wormwitch’s Strike Mortal Soil (Prosthetic) with a groovy attitude. I thought it clever that it opens with ‘As Above’ and closes with ‘So Below’. The first words spoken were, “I stand on the precipice. And I leave my body to wash away in the current of time. Pour your wisdom into me. Repent into me. And prepare for total annihilation.” In my mind I swear I heard Arthur Brown starting to sing ‘Fire’. I tried to sing ‘Fire’ whilst listening to ‘Howling From the Grave’. In a very scary twist of musical fate, it worked!
So yes, ‘Howling From the Grave’ has a very groovy 60s kitch vibe to it. That was unexpected. The whole psychedelic vibe lasted for all of a minute and a half! Then it became a cacophonous mishmash of Heavy and ghoulie metal, with some nice shredding by guitarist Colby Hink. It didn’t set me up for ‘Weregild’. Not at all. This was different. It was faster. I barely could hear a melody attempting to burst through like a chest burster from Aliens. But it was suppressed by a circle pit frenetic passage. Then it screeched to a chunka chunka chunka metal thing. So Wormwitch is not following the playbook. Wicked googalie. There is a nice fusion of different types of music thrown in the blender and the result is a very palatable drink called Strike Mortal Soil.
I went into each song with a giddy, “What’s next? What’s next?” I got a pseudo Gregorian chant type song over haunting atmospheric music. I got a strait up circle pit metal tome. I got the “I want to grow up and be a pole dancer and use this track” piece. I got an almost, but not quite, totally unlike Motorhead piece. I got the Lord of the Rings, ‘…And Smote His Ruin Upon the Mountainside’ no love for Smeagal nod. There was the Bob Fosse Chicago nod that you could Frug to. Then the album ended.
I actually screamed aloud, “Do it again! Do it again! Do it again!” There was nothing groundbreaking about Wormwitch’s Strike Mortal Soil. Wormwitch just put it together in a very interesting and engaging way that will make you salivate for more.