Expanding, evolving, exploring, and enchanting are all applicable when describing the orbit of All Them Witches. Since their 2016 Rig Rundown, the quartet have continued pursuing their sonic mission, unbound by anything but regeneration. Their never-ending musical mutation has yielded three more individualistic, intrepid releases since our last check-in. Sleeping Through the War, in 2017, explored more purposeful, mystical songcraft cloaked in hypnotic, rambunctious rock. For 2018’s ATW, the band’s IV-like retreat (substitute Headley Grange for a Tennessee cabin) extracted a doomier, more chaotic side A equally matched by a side B that’s a psychedelic painkiller. And 2020’s Nothing as the Ideal shows the temporary power trio (drummer Robby Staebler completes the line-up) striking a levitating balance within a menacing, mortar of metal that binds and anchors their emotive, effervescent excursions. (Drop the needle on closer “Rats in Ruin” and let it wash over you.)
Just before their sold-out show at Nashville’s historic Ryman Auditorium (on Halloween, no less), Witches guitarist Ben McLeod and bassist/vocalist Charles Michael Parks Jr. welcomed PG’s Chris Kies onstage to re-chronicle their setups. The resulting conversation covers their modified war horses, deciphers their esoteric stacks, and reveals the secrets of the “doom broom.” Plus, we get hip to new builder Elad Shapiro of Dale Amps.