The Anvil, The Bournemouth

Cybernetic Witch Cult

Openers from Portsmouth Tirana, look like a trio of school teachers! To wit, an English teacher on Guitar and vocals, Geography on Bass and Maths on Drums. Interestingly enough they play a catchy mix of Southern Fried Boogie, and “Amphetamine Reptile” – style noise rock. The drummer was previously in Tricorn and later King Ghidora. I don’t know how many gigs they’ve played, but a few more should help with the stage presence they need to hone; otherwise promising.

Tirana 1234

Manchester’s “Ritual King” are a lot more like what the audience is here for, (a load more people turn up to see them, more than the openers). Playing a more retro set inspired by the likes of Sabbath, Zeppelin, Purple, along with a definite dose of Budgie. Not as heavy as the other bands on the bill, with their hooky energetic Blues-laden rock. Delivered with a clean but slightly reverbed vocal style, that would have back in the early seventies; had Hippies, Thickies and Brickies losing their shit to on the weekends.

Ritual King
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Eye of Sabbath, Wing of Hawkwind, Toe of Sleep, Testicles of Motorhead, Fingernail clippings of Neurosis. And erm, is that saliva of Rudimentary Peni?! Cybernetic Witch Cult are back!!! I haven’t seen Cornwall’s finest in two years, during which time they’ve travelled to all parts of the country and are less 70’s psychedelic commandos and now more “Psychonaut Black” ops. What’s changed? A new bass rhythm section; tighter and more aggressive, and that’s just for starters. Opening tune “The Cetacean” and the following tune are more punchy; and touch industrial, swift guitar change and older favourites like Dark Star, Velociraptor and High Wizard (King of the Horsehead Nebula) also receive an airing. They’re not allowed to leave the stage until we get an encore, in this case new tune “The Spice”, (inspired by 1984 David Lynch movie Dune).

Cybernetic Witch Cult
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With so many references to B-movies in their songs, can they be taken seriously? They’re enjoying themselves and they’re giving it 100%, so yes you can take it very seriously.

Set List
The Cetacean
Hypercomputer pt 1
Dark Star
Cult of the Druid
High Wizard (King of the Horsehead Nebula)
Spice (encore)


Words by Tad Wilenchik
Photos by Dan O’Gara.

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