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Castle - In Witch Order

Label: Van
Format: CD download
Released: 2011
Reviewed By: Mark Gromen
Rating: 7/ 10

Small German label issues this San Fran, female-fronted doom trio’s full length debut. Imagine St. Vitus with original Znowhite singer Nicole Lee, might come close to the melodic bludgeoning forthwith. Tempos vary from full out rock, to more belabored, but always with a strong sense of melody. The catchy, upbeat ‘Descent Of Man’ opener belies the doom stereotype, as does an equally rollicking ‘Fire In The Sky’ follow-up, alternating dual sexed vocals. Overall, more vitality than the genre often portends.


Good to know there’s American bands trying something like this in 2011, whatever the "reward". Even better they’re receiving international (at least in terms of label) recognition. ‘Spellbinder’ is a straight ahead rocker, a little grime, but otherwise delivered pretty cleanly, whereas ‘Lost Queen’ and the slow, bass rumbler ‘Sleeping Giant’ might be their closest calls with by-the-numbers doom, even with the two vocalists. ‘Shaman Wars’ transparently apes Black Sabbath. As this is just their initial introduction to the world, will certainly be interested in watching where Castle go from here.

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