A Haunted Person’s Guide out on CD, Vinyl & Download

A Haunted Person’s Guide
A Haunted Person’s Guide
get the CD here
Yellow Vinyl Ltd. Ed.
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Buy Now

Less drone-obsessed than Spacemen 3, more focused than Primal Scream, the Witches share record collections with those bands, and similar visions. But while there’s nothing about the Witches music that screams Detroit in any classic or generic sense, I think it’s the rhythm ‘n’ blues foundations of Detroit musicianship that keep the Witches songs and sound comparatively grounded, even as they explore the outer dimensions. A Haunted Person’s Guide to the Witches is a top-notch introduction to an underrated band. – Steve Wilson / Reverberations
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Conjured in the mid-’90s, The Witches blurred genres, influences (and members) as much as their songs blurred the boundaries to the supernatural; melodic macabre musings were howled and trounced out via raucous séances that effectively undermined the locks on your door that kept out both the paranoia and the phantasmagoria.
Once the door was opened, you realized however weird, provocative or snarling the sound, that this was the kind of rock ‘n’ roll party you never wanted to leave; a strange psychosis you could identify with, decorated with an eyes and ears reflecting reverence for a galaxy of outsider art. These demons had hearts! And all of it delivered with this tumbling, hook-heavy rock sound, warmed with a playful punch and shimmying jangle, but still haunted by a raspy baritone crooner … – Jeff Milo / Real Detroit Weekly
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A Haunted Person’s Guide is a perfect introduction to the Witches’ work. Among the numerous highlights are two songs taken from 2001’s Universal Mall: the Standells-meet-guitar-shredding-stoner-rock on “People What’s Wrong With You” and the ghostly psychedelic carousel of “(She Got Some Kinda) Thing”. This is devilishly good music that should be filed on your shelf alongside the Soft Boys. – Alan Brown / PopMatters
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It takes a very special artist to collaborate with Flotsam and Jetsam, Killing Joke, the Dirtbombs, and Spiritualized, and Troy Gregory is just that kind of musician. While Gregory has an impressive and eclectic résumé, some of his best work has also been his least appreciated, namely the albums he cut with his band the Witches. A revolving collective of Detroit musicians (members of the Electric Six, Outrageous Cherry, the Sights, the Go, and Larval all played with the group between 1996 and 2007) with Gregory as the leader and principle songwriter, the Witches offered up a deliciously twisted take on classic pop in which the dark throb of the Velvet Underground squares off against various archetypes of mid-‘60s rock & roll (psychedelia, bubblegum, and garage rock) in the midst of a seance. Unfortunately, the Witches’ body of recorded work has appeared on small independent labels that have been poorly distributed outside the Midwest, but Alive Natural Sound Records have given their music the second chance it richly deserves with A Haunted Person’s Guide to the Witches, a 12-song collection that features representative tracks from the group’s four albums as well as a tune from their unreleased debut, Everything Changes Reality, and two unreleased performances. Considering this album was assembled from songs recorded over the space of 11 years, it’s a pleasant surprise that A Haunted Person’s Guide coheres like a proper album rather than a compilation.
- Mark Deming / All Music Guide
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Gregory’s songs have the hooks of garage and rock bands that broke through to AM radio in the ‘60s and ‘70s, tipping their hat to the Byrds and Flamin’ Groovies with “Lost With the Real Gone,” Love with “Sprit World Rising,” and T-Rex with bass-and-handclap rhythm of “Down on Ugly Street.” In contrast to fashion-plate revivalists, the Witches showcase an amalgamation and evolution of their influences that keeps these tuneful echoes fresh. – Hyperbolium
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Written without an eye (or ear) toward popular radio, the songs that make up A Haunted Person’s Guide were clearly Gregory exercising his creative ghosts. The collection, taken as a whole, shows the band certainly deserved a wider audience outside of record store employees and bitter music critics. – John Moore / Philadelphia Punk Music
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One could argue that it’s unfair to summarize five LPs with a dozen tracks (three of them previously unreleased) in 36 minutes, but given the uneven nature of the band’s albums, A Haunted Person’s Guide to the Witches makes a much stronger case for the Witches’ virtues than a journey through their catalog. – Michael Toland / The Big Takeover
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Detroit’s had many rock & roll heroes throughout the ages, and here Gregory has channelled a good number of them. Both Alice Cooper and Mitch Ryder can be heard in equal measure, while I’m sure he’s filtered in plenty of lesser-knowns to which we’re not privy. The Witches made an enticing sound of their lineage while, as this collections makes evident, carving out their own small place within it. – Stephen Slaybaugh / The Agit Reader
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Distortioni (Italy) | Malinois Blog (FR) | Keys & Chords (Netherlands) | Magic Box (FR)

Born in Detroit in 1996 from the mind of bass player Troy Gregory (Dirtbombs, Killing Joke) and with the help of fellow Michigan natives John Nash (Electric Six, LCD Soundsystem) on guitar, and producer Jim Diamond (White Stripes, Von Bondies) on electric twelve-string, The Witches went on to record five amazing albums between 1996 and 2006, with the help of a revolving line-up of Michigan musicians. A Haunted Person’s Guide To The Witches compiles material from the band’s five albums, and is a comprehensive introduction to the band’s unique sound.

"Though the songs are primarily constructed from the uncontrollable ravings of Troy Gregory’s wildly creative and hyperactive imagination, the whole thing represents the point of view of a generation of midwestern outcasts raised on a weird diet of horror films, psychedelic kids’ TV shows, glam rock, bubblegum music, Mad Magazine, and comic books. The Witches inhabit a psychic landscape where Mick Jagger, Bela Lugosi, William S. Burroughs, and Gumby walk side by side across the wasted ruins of the 20th Century." – Metro Times
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Alive Naturalsound home page | Troy Gregory on FaceBook


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