A perfect combination of energy and magic (understand?) magnetised a sell-out crowd to the Odeon Theatre for English doom metal favourites Electric Wizard. For many in the theatre, this event was of inconceivable significance, as this opportunity had finally arrived after decades of wishing and hoping. To be frank, the quartet undoubtedly delivered a spell-binding performance of the highest calibre.
With a psychedelic acid trip, visual backdrop which varied from the outfit’s name in a groovy hippie font (think Austin Powers), to classic nude bondage and torture films, to war imagery and even a bikie gang – the showcase was all-encompassing to every one of the human senses. Beginning with sounds of thunder and lightning, the three gentlemen and lady of Electric Wizard strolled onto the stage to begin their assault of sorcery on the bustling audience. Often referred to as: “The heaviest band in the universe”, EW’s intention was to pummel Hobart into a state of stoner and sludge oblivion and they did so with immediacy.
“Black Mass” was a deafening onslaught of hypnotic stoner metal, which was impossibly enhanced further by “See You In Hell”. The major highlight was “The Chosen Few”, inconceivably this track elevated every aspect of what was harnessed in the venue; the energy, the obscurity and even the reverie of the production underwent a transference into a different dimension or state of being. It was a trance-inducing neurological experience that had become a memorable daze.
Each member exhibited a super-human spectacle with their musical delivery. Swaying, head-banging, intricate playing but with little regard for their instrument of choice. Vocalist/guitarist was transfixing as the leader, however, bass player Clayton Burgess emitted an exorcism with his erraticism which guitarist Liz Buckingham competed with and unanswerably added a level of finesse.
Oddly the voodoo ritual that is an Electric Wizard performance seemed to conclude quickly in hindsight, but it is conceivable that witchcraft can alter time. With the recent ending of heavy metal titans Black Sabbath, the throne is available for Electric Wizard to conquer and perhaps their “hexcraft” can levitate the four-piece to that echelon.