Spellbook takes the mystical marriage of ’70s rock and pure metal to new heights! Armed with a dual-guitar assault and nine instantly memorable compositions, York, Pennsylvania metallers Spellbook return with their brilliant sophomore outing, Deadly Charms!
York, Pennsylvania vintage proto-metal purveyors Spellbook released their Magick & Mischief debut long-player during the thick of the 2020 global pandemic. Unable to play live and reliant upon the goodwill of its growing fanbase and enthusiastic words of the metal press, Spellbook served as a mystical sonic detour for those looking to escape to a better place. Rightfully so — Magick & Mischief’s freewheeling, heady and hard-driving blend of 1970s rock and metal struck the perfect, resonate chord. Two years on and with a new lineup in tow, Spellbook returns with their much-anticipated sophomore album, Deadly Charms.
Tracked at Developing Nations in Baltimore, Maryland, with producer/engineer Kevin Bernsten, Deadly Charms marks the Spellbook studio introduction of guitarists Les Yarde and Patrick “Patty” Benton, who join Nate Tyson (vocals), Seibert Lowe Jr. (bass) and Nick Zinn (drums). Benton and Yarde came as a package deal, providing Spellbook with a multi-faceted twin-guitar tandem that injected new life into their sound. The pandemic prevented regular rehearsals, but the members of Spellbook got creative and started sending riffs through a group chat dubbed “The Riff Box.” A prolific riff writer, Benton provided his bandmates with piles of ideas to sift through until they had nine tight, memorable songs that underlined Spellbook’s approach of “How many hooks we can jam into each song?”
Deadly Charms finds Spellbook moving into horror themes that are rooted in reality. Here, the band’s penchant for vivid storytelling comes to life on “Rehmeyer’s Hollow,” a song about the 1928 murder of Pennsylvania witch doctor Nelson Rehmeyer, who practiced an obscure form of magic known as “powwow.” “The Witch of Ridley Creek” details the first witch trial held in Pennsylvania — years before the Salem Witch Trials, while other tracks deal with vampiric themes and demonic possession, save for the title track, a haunting ode to friends that Tyson has lost due to heroin addiction.
The Deadly Charms cover art was created by David Thiérrée, the man responsible for striking visuals for Behemoth, Ihsahn and Mortiis. Thiérrée’s artwork adds another layer to Spellbook’s intriguing visuals that take a page from the legendary KISS, Alice Cooper and Judas Priest — bands who took pride in how they presented themselves on stage. With the concert circuit once again in full operation and the vibrant, anthemic songs on Deadly Charms ready for the stage, 2022 promises to be a memorable one for Spellbook.
2. Rehmeyer’s Hollow
5. Her Spectral Armies
6. The Witch of Riley Creek
7. Deadly Charms
8. Night of the Doppelganger
9. Out for Blood
GENRE: Proto Metal