Like two of this writer’s favorite new Canadian metal bands, Rammer and Burn to Black, Cleveland, Ohio’s Skeletonwitch is hugely indebted to the classic European thrash metal of the late 1980s. However, what sets this ripping good quintet apart from the rest of the thrash revivalists out there is the sheer quality of the dual guitar work of Nathan Garnette and Scott Hedrick. Like those old classics by Kreator, Sodom, and Destruction, the blinding speed is offset by some well-crafted, often ornate guitar melodies nestled in between taut staccato riffing, but the duo is clever enough to ass some added modern extreme metal touches as well. At less than 12 minutes long, Worship the Witch doesn’t waste any time whatsoever, from the breakneck pace of “Fire From the Sky”, to the cool midtempo break during “Feast Upon Flesh”, to the wicked gallop of “Forever in the Abyss”. While vocalist Chance Garnette displays good range (from a black metal screech to a death metal growl), his scream that is both impenetrable and indecipherable, but thanks to the band’s tight performances, and especially that very impressive pair of guitarists, this CD commands our interest all the way though. Recently signed to Prosthetic Records (who is currently carrying this EP), and displaying loads of potential, Skeletonwitch is one new band we have to keep an eye on.
- Multiple songs MySpace