(8/10) Austin, Texas is the home base of doom rockers Duel. The four-piece band released a few weeks ago their sophomore album “Witchbanger”, an record that features eight brilliant songs. Classic rock elements meet Sabbath-like doom, that’s how you could describe what you get to hear with this release.
Knowing that singer and guitarist Tom Frank, together with Shaun Avants (b), have a history in Scorpion Child explains the musical background. After having left Scorpion Child the guys teamed up with JD Shadowz (d) and Derek Halfmann(g) and Duel was born.
The faster riff rocker “Devil” is the starting shot for this eight-leg race. This tune is a brilliant one, bringing back the late 70’s/early 80’s in an undusted way. Duel gets their inspiration from this early period of rock without blindly copying the days.
The title track comes next. “Witchbanger” is an awesome song with a galloping rhythm in a more moderate pace, followed by “The Snake Queen” where things get a bit more psychedelic, showcasing the dark side of Texas. This longplayer is a highly entertaining album with songs like the bluesy “Astro Gypsy” and the up-tempo rocker “Heart of the Sun”.
"Witchbanger" doesn’t contain any song that’s not worth to be on this record. “Bed of Nails” and the powerful “Cat’s Eye” are excellent psychedelic doom anthems, showing that this oldschool metal style can be done in a refreshing way by not loosing the old spirit and intensity.
The six minutes metal hymn “Tigers and Rainbows”, with its soulful middle section, ends a longplayer that should be checked out by fans of Black Sabbath, Thin Lizzy, Spiritual Beggars, …. I’m very impressed by this record,
- The Snake Queen
- Astro Gypsy
- Heart of the Sun
- Bed of Nails
- Cat’s Eye
- Tigers and Rainbows
Label: Heavy Psych Sounds
Release Date EU: April 28th, 2017