Pretty Lightning

There Are Witches In The Woods

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Pretty Lightning was formed in 2007 , in essence a raw psychedelic-blues duo that on the surface could be seen as kindred spirits to the likes of Wooden Shjips or Moon Duo, Pretty Lightning also appear to mirror a freak-folk sensibility found in the likes of Sunburned Hand of the Man and their Stateside compatriots. But they also reflect their closer geographic roots - echoing the communal, ritualistic krautrock of Amon Duul II or perhaps the primitivism of Sweden’s International Harvester (both Berghoff and Haas are also part of the Saarlouis-based Datashock collective).

But if such comparisons serve to place the band in some kind of loose context, they should not undermine such a heartfelt outcome, nor steer the listener away from the band’s melodic leanings - ‘There Are Witches in the Woods’ delivers hooks and harmonies on a grand scale. Recorded in Autumn 2010, the album is the result of the band shutting itself away in a cavernous room to capture the breadth of their sonic vision. Formed around a crux of drums, vocals and a variety of guitars, the arrangements are bolstered by shruti-drones, organ loops and theremins, giving a sense of space and scope to eleven sweet, succinct chapters, and the album as a whole.


Andy says: Pretty Lightning are Christian Berghoff and Sebastian Haas, two Germans who have crashed into our lives, seemingly from nowhere, sounding precisely like the Black Keys! Not a Black Keys that are headlining the M.E.N. but one that's got lost in the woods and eaten some funny mushrooms! This pair plays heavy, thumping, fuzzed-up blues, but this is rock to the Black Key's pop. The riffs are stoned; slow and grinding, but laced with drone and space-rock elements on the same (astral!) plain as U.S. heads Wooden Shjips or even Sunburned Hand of the Man. Without wanting to get too geographical, a further departure from the blues-duo template is Pretty Lightning's sense of creepy, hazy, freak-folk doominess that, considering their nationality, is tempting to compare with, maybe, Amon Düül II. The use of theremin, shruti drone box and orchestration, combined with those enormous riffs, ferry you away to those dark, early '70s days of fantasy and black magic, rather than a bewildering night at the M.E.N. Arena. It's a trip worth taking.


1. Down With The Moon
2. We'd Rather Be Some Criminals
3. Blazing Bright
4. Hail Hail
5. See No Evil
6. Old Lord
7. Brother Gold Miner
8. The Sound Of Thunder
9. An Old Wives´ Tale
10. The Wizard
11. The Ghostwalk #2

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