Destroyer of Light w/ Blues Funeral and Witchcryer - Rudyard's 9/3/16
Witchcryer might be my great revelation of the evening. I wasn’t familiar with Austin-area band, so I checked out their Preying Kind EP, which turned out to be some pretty solid retro-doom with some excellent vocals from Suzy Bravo. But while good, there is a lot of that about these days. What I wasn’t prepared for was the live onslaught. Bravo is killer live - there is some serious brujeria going on when she gets onstage. Her voice is powerful, yes, but she also has great control, bringing the songs to a couple of tremendous crescendoes. And she does this with an amazing presence, defiantly claiming the stage, engaging the audience, menacing them, then letting it all go with a wink. Brilliant stuff. Add this to a powerful rhythm section and a some very tasteful sabbath guitar and you have no excuse not to catch these guys next time around.
Local ne'er-do-wells Blues Funeral are really making a name for themselves with a well received new record, and a good part of the crowd seemed to be there to see them in particular. As well they should. Blues Funeral bring a refreshing dose of metal woodshed skill to bear on their music. All major food groups of the orchestra are represented: Drums and Bass, Organ, fiery strat guitar, and pointy metal guitar. They are definitely worth checking out if you enjoy instrumental excursions. Album title-track “The Search” got a good long run. And when it comes off, I don’t think there is much finer than a well executed dual guitar harmony flourish to end a song. A couple of new tracks rounded out the set, including one with some guest vocals, before all made way for…
Destroyer of Light
OK, I’ll say it - if there is a local band that most represents the spirit of Negalithic, it’s Destroyer of Light. They arrived out of the darkness, looking like nothing if not a time-strewn picts released from some chambered tomb. Sure, they have ink rather than woad, but I bet if you looked at the amps, it’s ogham script that goes to eleven.
And, as the cabinet says, they do not bow, but there is a sense of submission to something when they play, maybe nothing more than sheer volume. Like Witchcryer, they are revelatory live, the songs becoming more than just a performance. Is offering up your axe to the great Orange altar in order to raise great slabs of droning feedback an act of supplication or creation? Is there a difference? Half the time Jeff Klein seems to not even play his bass, he just wills the notes out of it, twisting in the warp-spasm of battle frenzy.