‘Wood Witch’ from The Hare and The Moon - an edge between menacing and entrancing

(September 11, 2015)

There are only a few bands that get the spooky meanderings and otherworldly wanderings that raise the spectre of ‘dark psych-folk’ absolutely right. While some make a half-hearted attempt to join the circle, others conjure up the required ominously weird darkness that makes each shiver-inducing track a pleasure. The album ‘Wood Witch’ from ‘The Hare and Thewood witch - hare and moon 001 Moon’ those purveyors darkly delicious folk tales, offers up a compendium of explorations that range from the edge of shades through myth and fable to their interpretations of bucolic folk.

The album overflows with ominous soundscapes that perfectly encapsulate the darker side of English folklore and fable. There are wavering ghostly voices, hypnotic trance-like drones, tolling bells and portentous rumblings, the whole taking you from wherever the modern world has placed you to somewhere infinitely more promising. The opening track, ‘The Midnight Folk’ lays out their stall for all to hear and following with such mood-filled echoes as ‘The Bard Of Eve’, ‘Reynardine’, and the melancholy of ‘Cruel Henry’. Their shadowy embrace of ‘The Wife Of Ushers Well’ takes a well-known song to somewhere else entirely, as does the haunting embrace of ‘The Great Silkie Of Sule Skerry’ and ‘Down By The Greenwood Side’.

There’s an edge to this music that moves between menacing and entrancing brought about by the combination of voices, synths, instrumentation and melding of music and magic. The only way to fully appreciate what goes on within ‘Wood Witch’ is to listen without interruption or hindrance, light a candle or two, cut the electric light, embrace the shadows, welcome the witch and live the legend. Find The Hare and The Moon here:

Review: Tim Carroll

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