Esben and the Witch - Older Terrors

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words: Elena Mara Reed, 2016-10-31

If you had a chance to listen to new tracks by Esben and the Witch, and you absolutely loved them, then stop reading this. If you haven’t heard them, use the links below and make your own judgement.


“Older terrors” consists of 4 monolithic tracks (each lasts longer than 10 minutes) and is technically the most sophisticated piece by Esben and the Witch. The album offers ‘the same good old’ solid slab of atmospheric sound as 'Wash the Sins Not Only the Face' or 'A New Nature'. “Older terrors” runs smoothly like a river, drums gather stream leading the melodies for vocals and guitars. Rachel’s ethereal vocals sounds as good as ever. Her hauntingly beautiful voice does not make songs sound cheesy or too catchy.

Having said that, while I acknowledge and appreciate Rachel’s ability to hold a note for so long without wobbling, the abundance of long vowels /i:/, /u:/,/ɜ:/,/ɔ:/ and /ɑ:/ in each track is annoying. The stories that are being told by these songs get diluted and perhaps even lost in the long /i:/s and oh-oh-ohs, and lyrics I am afraid don’t help. The more I listen to “Older terrors”, the more the tracks are blurring into one continuous flow. A flow that imho lacks ingenuity.

Yet it is already the fourth album by Esben and it stands out for cohesiveness, integration and meticulous production techniques. Surely, “Older terrors” will find its way to fans’ hearts and ears. 6,5 out of 10.