SpellBook (Magick & Mischief)

Turn this to 7.4 of 11

Released: 2020

Genre: Heavy Metal

Sounds Like: Pentagram, Trouble, The Sword

Hailing from York, Pennsylvania, SpellBook have unleashed a pretty solid album loaded with classic metal influences. Magick & Mischief is packed with classic 70s and 80s galloping metal with touches of Pentagram doom and early Trouble rawness. We started our review after a few rotations and it fell within a middle of the road rating of 5.5, but it creeped up after after a few more listens. There is something that pulls us in, perhaps it's our love for classic metal coupled with influences from the aforementioned bands.

Magick & Mischief even touches upon some glam metal, but not too much, they were careful to pull back. The track "Amulet/Fare Thee Well" is the perfect example. The vocals may take getting used to as we were not enamored with the vocal style on first rotation, it's definitely an acquired taste. Many will compare to Ozzy, but we're not going there, think Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth from Overkill. Magick & Mischief is a metal album with so many influences that it's bound to draw its criticisms and accolades. For us, it has become a very entertaining metal album that fits well in our heavy collection.


Track Listing:

1. Wands To The Sky 03:47

2. Black Shadow 03:51

3. Ominous Skies 04:44

4. Not Long For This World 08:37

5. Motorcade 05:59

6. Amulet/Fare Thee Well 06:50

7. Dead Detectives 11:36


Standout Track(s):

"Ominous Skies" has some terrific galloping riffs with some duel guitar shredding, than plunges toward some Sword-like metal, a very cool track. "Not Long For This World" is a loner tune that shows us the progressive doom side of the band. We must give a shout out to the closing track "Dead Detectives". This 11 minute track shows the band taking chances. The lounge styled metal track is very intriguing with a story you want to follow.


Adult Beverage Pairing:

We're going with a brew local to the band. Check out the distinct European-style of Penn Dark Lager from Penn Brewery in Pennsylvania, PA. This 5% Dark Münchener Dunkel has a sweet and smooth taste of caramel malt with nutty and toffee notes. A nice pairing with Magick & Mischief.

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ROTATION RECAP:

Captivation and Variety

7.3 out of 11


Vocal Performance

7.8 out of 11


Weight of the Heavy

7.2 out of 11


Fretwork Prowess

8.1 out of 11


Overall Album Flow

7.4 out of 11


Contrast

7.1 out of 11


Album Cover Aesthetics

8.8 out of 11


Production Value

8.1 out of 11


Final Thoughts:

SpellBook are a unique crew and Magick & Mischief is not just a classic metal clone, they inject some originality to keep things fresh. Definitely give this album a few full rotations as previewing will not do this justice.


Follow SpellBook: Bandcamp / Facebook


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