October 31, 2016

EP: Night Witch - Tour Tape 2016

Night Witch has the ability to fill you with power in the face of adversity.

Night Witch’s Tour Tape 2016 brings a rush of strength and authority to its listeners, especially their femme-identifying ones. Vocalist Rosie Richeson’s screams contain anger, passion, frustration, and triumph. In the hybrid hardcore/punk band’s newest tape, her shouts have the ability to fill you with power and to fill abusers with regret and fear. The fierceness in Richeson’s voice and lyrics, combined with the heavy bass, pulsating guitar, and energetic drums, create an empowering sound that can boil blood. “Got my femmes all around, fill you full of regret / Wished you never touched me,” Richeson roars in the tape’s second song, “Witch Hunt,” a fast-paced, mosh-worthy scream-along. Richeson repeats, “WITCH HUNT!!!” as she calls on all listeners to confront abusers and make sure their actions do not go unnoticed or unpunished. A dissonant guitar rings in the background and vigorous drum fills push the song and the anger forward with a driving purpose. This song best embodies the tape’s message: that femmes are strong, look out for each other, and won’t stand for any injustice.

The tape kicks off with calling attention to the importance of consent and respect for women as Richeson describes her own painful experience with assault in the opener “Lucky.” “It was consensual, right?” she asks herself aloud with anguish and confusion in her voice as guitar feedback fills the the background and a lonely cymbal rings out. Night Witch’s tone of confidence makes a triumphant comeback in the song “Girl Code,” where Richeson thanks girls for sticking together against “predatory men” in a pogo-able song with flurried guitar and bass accompanied by a disco-drum beat that keeps the pace bouncy and bold. The song transitions flawlessly into “Who’s Next,” a heavier tune that describes the caution that femmes must exercise in a society where abusers are not adequately recognized and punished, especially if they have a higher social status. Richeson’s disappointment and frustration is expressed as she growls “Who’s next? You’re all the same / No man is safe.” Even though the song is about vigilance and carefulness, Night Witch maintains their signature ferocity and spunk that brings listeners together for empowerment, support, and revenge. 

On the B-side of this tape, Night Witch switches things up by covering five songs by their good friends and fellow Tallahassee locals Naps. This B-side was recorded live, and it features all the personality and raw edge that explodes from the band during their performances. Night Witch skillfully reconstructs Naps’ bedroom poppy twee songs into energetic, noisy, and jarring hardcore that still stays true to Naps’ sincerity and open-heartedness.


Listen to Night Witch on bandcamp.

Brianna Peterson plays awkward pop punk country in a band called Cooper!, loves everything outdoors and Twin Peaks, and is painfully torn between being a dog or a cat person.