Live Review: L.A. Witch – Soup Kitchen – 27/06/2018

Los Angeles garage/goth trio L.A. Witch have been all but rising since the release of their self-titled moody release of last year. The band have been touring significantly since and have caught the eyes of numerous music fans. After touring Europe since the start of June, the band found themselves returning to the UK for a 5 show stint. Their gothic tones and dark approach encapsulates a moodier LA/desert rock sound that bursts to life during their live shows.

Afghan Sand Gang would act as support for the trio of feisty witches. The boys from the borders of Manchester brought a more dark synth lead to the evening. Their sound evidently dark and experimental bringing a catchy and in your face style of music. After releasing their debut EP back in May, Afghan Sand Gang have received a lot of attention for their blend of dark psychedelic desert rock and dance like grooves. Their live show further blends those sounds together in a raging cascade of deep-lying synths and progressive bass lines that hook you into their psych world within the first chords. Songs like ‘Mantra’ and its pulsating bass riff and piercing guitars make for a fun and extremely enjoyable set. Don’t be surprised to see these guys crop up on lineups not just in Manchester, but in other parts of the UK.

Dressed in darkened clothing and captivating looks L.A. Witch throw you right into their world within the first track, opening up with ‘You Love Nothing’. A packed out Soup Kitchen raring to catch this brilliant band perform we’re already captivated by their ominous look and stylish stage presence. Lead vocalist Sade Sanchez with her dropping down her face in a grim fashion delivers a wicked performance throughout the set. The opening lyrics of “I see a darkness in your eyes, I feel a darkness in your mind” set the tone for the evening. Album opener ‘Kill My Baby’ and its progressive sounds take you further into their mysterious world with their capitulating hooks. Slow burner and climactic finisher ‘Brian’ was a standout moment of the night. The slow build of western sounding tension creates a real aura around the venue, especially with its loud and much more violent ending.

The slowed down pace of tracks like ‘Brian’ still maintain a semi-violent edge with its thrashing and luscious guitars and deep hitting drum beats. With the world cup looming, the girls then referred to the fact that the world cup is (most definitely) coming home along with members of the crowd who (very briefly) began chanting the famous footy classic. ‘Untitled’, one of the much faster tracks of the set, encouraged the fans to stomp their feet in time with the pulsating drums. The heat inside the venue didn’t seem to bother anyone, encouraging Sanchez to notify just how hot it really was inside the grim grounds of Soup Kitchen. ‘Baby In Blue Jeans’ and its cascading desert rock vibes, the dark and gritty ‘Drive Your Car’ both further showcased the band’s concoction of sounds in an energetic yet cool fashion.

L.A. Witch then debuted new material within the foggy, sweaty venue. Two brand new tracks with one simply called ‘New Song’. The band still keep to their roots with this new material bringing that hard cutting sound that truly does define their band. It will be exciting to hear what a fully fledged studio recording of the tracks will sound like.

L.A. Witch concluded the night with fan favourites ‘Get Lost’ and an encore performance of ‘Feel Alright’, with the latter being demanded highly by die-hard fans of the band. ‘Get Lost’ filled the room with distortion and darkened dramatics. The trio too you into the dark of the night and the depths of their sound. With new material seemingly on the horizon, who knows what else this talented young trio have in store for us all.