"Kill the Witch" (Rockshots Records; 2023)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

"Kill the Witch," by L.A. rockers Arch Blade is a rough and raw heavy metal recording, full of galloping rhythms, driving guitars and screeching vocals. And it delivers the goods if what you're looking for is a stripped-down, smash and thrash that holds your attention for its 10-track, 45-minute run time. Even when it slows down a bit (as it does on "Factory of Sin" and "House of Dreams") "Kill the Witch" still rocks.

As I always say about these recordings, "Kill the Witch" is at its best when it's going full-force. "Tyrant Rhapsody," "Touched by Death" and the closer, "Under the Mask" are all fine examples of this. But sometimes, it's just a little too raw for me. The bass sounds thin, the guitars don't sound full. I don't know if this is a production issue, a compression issue, or something else. And, really, it's no big deal. Rock'n'roll is supposed to be rough and tumble and raw and bloody and "Kill the Witch" certainly delivers that. I just wish there was a little more meat on these particular bones.

Regardless, worth a spin, for sure.

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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