Released: 2011, Van Records
The promo material that came with the album asked, “Have you ever wondered how heavy a castle is?” Well as a matter of fact I have. These are the things one tends to think about from time to time. I also image Castle (the band) is the audio equivalent of a castle (the building).
Castle is a relatively new band from the US entered the crowded Doom market. Hailing from San Francisco, that’s not normally a place generally associated with Doom…however, if ya think about it other heavy, cool cult bands have come from there, most immediately springing to mind is Slough Feg.
I’m really impressed with this trio. The immediate highlight is the vocal style and delivery of Elizabeth Blackwell. She has a really enchanting, mesmerizing voice. She gets backed up vocally once in a while by a gruff vocal attack. Her voice is echoey and haunting, a great performance.
The band have certainly worshiped at the altar of classic doom. I’m hearing Candlemass, Trouble St., Vitus and all the big names, however, Castle being very heavy also aren’t afraid of tempo and use it effectively. The opening cut ‘The Decent Of Man’ and ‘Sleeping Giant’ rumble along pretty relentlessly. Thick tasty riffs, churning bass and cannon-like drums are the hallmark of all the songs, each bands locked into a deadly doom-groove without overplaying. Power trio indeed!
IN WITCH ORDER is a truly excellent debut and I expect Castle to make some inroads pretty soon on the global stage. This is one of the best classic Metal/doom albums I’ve heard this year.