WYTCH HAZEL To Release Prelude Album In April; “We Will Be Strong” Track Streaming
March 3, 2016, 2 years ago
UK hard rock band Wytch Hazel will release its debut full-length LP, Prelude, on April 22nd via Bad Omen Records; the boutique label founded by long-time Rise Above Records agent Will Palmer. Recorded at Foel Studio (Hawkwind, Dust) with ex-Purson multi-instrumentalist Ed Turner as producer, Prelude is defined by its stately duelling guitars, blissful expressive solos and fist-throwing eponymous sing-along. Stream the new Wytch Hazel song, "We Will Be Strong”, below.
In a parallel universe where the New Wave of British Heavy Metal happened 600 years early, Wytch Hazel are the band of choice for the discerning Plantagenet headbanger. Combining the folk-rock eccentricity of Jethro Tull, the mystical harmony of Wishbone Ash and Thin Lizzy and the exuberance of prime NWOBHM - all immersed in sacred medieval influences via David Munrow's Early Music Consort of London - Wytch Hazel have happened upon an extremely singular and compelling alchemy. The group, who Darkthrone's Fenriz called, "the oldest sounding band to be band of the week. At least in the NWOBHM style," as part of his regular "Band of the Week" column, cites the likes of "Henry VIII, medieval and Renaissance music, 1970's prog rock and pop of differing eras" as its most diverse set of influences.
As a child the band's founder member, singer / guitarist Colin Hendra, played drums in brass bands and orchestras, studied classical piano and sang in the school chamber choir, but at 16 the direction of his life changed forever, after a revelation we can all relate to: "Iron Maiden was the main reason I started playing electric guitar," he reveals. "I remember borrowing The Number Of The Beast off a friend and was just blown away – heavy metal was an obsession from that point on!".
Cutting his teeth with Lancaster metalheads Lake Of Fire, Hendra discovered sacred vocal music and medieval dance through his college music studies. This, he says, "gave me the distinct vision for the band, its name and image," and lo, Wytch Hazel was born in early 2011. The quartet released a two-track demo the same year, followed by a couple of seven-inch splits, an appearance at the Swedish festival Muskelrock and the four-track EP The Truth in 2012. This noble artifact garnered quite a buzz on the UK underground, securing Wytch Hazel a support slot at Manilla Road's first ever UK live show and was later reissued along with their debut demo as a mini album on High Roller Records.
"I would define our look as ‘battle ready’!" says Colin of the band's rustic swashbuckler gear. "Our performance is like a musical fight!". Although visual presentation is important to Wytch Hazel, the priorities are clear. "The songwriting is our thing, that's what we major in," he asserts. "In my life that's what I'm best at, that's what I'm most passionate about. But you've also got to record that well, with clarity, and signing to Bad Omen has been a really big thing for us. This album is a massive breakthrough."
“More Than Conquerors”
“He Shall Reign”
“We Will Be Strong”
“We Will Be Strong”:
Pre-order Prelude now at this location
(Photo - Ester Segerra)