Chelsea_wolfe She_reaches_out_to

Chelsea Wolfe - She Reaches out to She Reaches out to She


Exactly everything I could have hoped for!

The second time I got lost in Vienna was on purpose. Passing through on a tour that began in Nice, I had returned to the hotel room one night with a surge of dumb tourist energy. Just then I chanced to see that Chelsea Wolfe was playing within the hour! Serendipity! And so I scrambled frantically to figure out the tube stop and somehow found myself at the spot. This would have been about a decade ago now, somewhere in the vicinity of the Pain Is Beauty cycle, with King Dude opening.

When they hit, it was pandemonium. There was a wild magic to it. The band captivated the packed hangar and Chelsea entranced all. As she still does. As on the studio records, I recall all those dark incantations borne of the harmonics of dissonance. Of Doom-laden folk poetics rendered from the possessed depths of the psyche; of love and loss and self-destruction. Here I am still going on about it today. The set was brilliant. The reverb off the metal walls too wild. Chelsea’s vocals and the rhythms nearly denatured by the cavernous din.

So about this new album from Northern Californian Wiccan Doom Folk outfit Chelsea Wolfe, She Reaches out to She Reaches out to She This is exactly everything I could have hoped for. Boldly dissonant as ever, Chelsea and the band sound matured and assured, refined and in their element. Candid and elusive, adamant and reticent all at once: personal and theatrical.

She Reaches out to… iterates on the bravado of the band’s angular, inventive, endlessly engaging turns of phrase at every phase. Stepping up the signature doom and electronic drop beats, the ethereal crooning. Still carrying close a steady thread through works past, as well pivoting with greater tenacity a deep palate of influences both modern and classic.

“Whispers in the Echo Chamber” opens the album hard for the bassheads and the Art-Rockers and sets the stage further for the driving rhythm of ”House of Self-Undoing”, poignant, even to a fault. Cuts like ”Everything Turns Blue” and the gorgeous ”The Liminal” channel themes going back to Mistake in Parting. ”Tunnel Lights” draws from Chelsea’s singer-songwriter roots and suggests a certain Portishead flavor.

”Eyes Like Nightshade”, ”Salt” and ”Unseen World”present themselves as percussive, electronic, industrial poetry and highlight the band’s growth as well as studio chops. Get a box of tissues before the yearningly lovely ”Place in the Sun” comes on, is all I can say about that. Feels like a closer to me but they chose the morose rocker, ”Dusk” and I cannot fault that much either.

She Reaches out to … is arguably the most cohesive whole record in Chelsea Wolfe’s discography. Possibly the most assured in its sound, with ever greater production. She reaches back to her roots and pulls it all together for a seriously fabulous effort to, hopefully, set a beautiful precedent for albums to come. I hope to one day find myself lost in Vienna again on the right night, entirely by chance, as if summoned, as I am today and forever enchanted by Chelsea Wolfe.