Closet Witch – Closet Witch (Halo of Flies, Jun 15)

Closet Witch’s self-titled LP is their first full length release since their inception nearly four years ago. It’s an intensely focused offering, with many of the crust punk elements of 2015’s Black Salt EP abandoned in favor of a dark and dense hybrid of various hardcore subgenres. Singer Mollie Piatetsky leads the charge on many of the tracks, her shrill yet full-bodied screams ripping through the maelstrom of blasts. Closet Witch handles both short and long songs with equal effectiveness, consistently dealing out both patient atmospherics and relentless breakdowns. It’s a versatility that’s present on the whole record, but is best seen in the double punch of “Rule by Bacon,” a nearly four-minute track whose slow-building crescendos climax in an exhausted vortex of feedback and desperate shrieks, and “Spell of Giddiness,” which follows it up with a 36 second block of pummeling hardcore. It also helps keep the album interesting and unpredictable, with even the most jarring stylistic change-ups working like a charm; Closet Witch somehow pulls chaotic d-beat, pounding mathcore rhythms, and crushing sludge metal under one infernal roof. Okay, now I have to stop writing so I can go listen to it again.