It is kind of frightening to think of a legitimate form of witch house, but there actually seems to be a genre emerging from the petri dish of experimentation that has festered over the past two years. Based on dark and brooding synth lines, often as slow and sluggish as the Screw that used to dominate, this “formula drag” often offers not much more than a six minute nap before one wakes to click on the next array of symbols calling themselves a band on Soundcloud. Still, to deny that there is some good music stemming from this more structural offspring would be as much a crime as to crown it the obvious successor to the dark wave’s graven throne.
Josh Powers is indeed one of the good ones. Hailing from Denver, this former science fiction b-boy weaves a macabre fabric that oozes the same primordial lustmord as friend and fellow Denver natives Modern Witch. One of the things that sets the music of Strange Powers apart is that it is obvious that Josh has been at it for a long time. His music show a maturity that sets it far apart from the usual REASONably FRUITY LOOPed beats and softsynths that pass for the new industrial dance. Tracks like “The Circle” are closer to Simonetti’s Goblin than just about any other of the recent artists that conjure the genre Giallo in the titles of their tracks. What makes it that much better, is that there are also hints of old school Ninjatune (particularly Neotropic and DJ Food) thrown in, indicating a full knowledge of the passage of ideas that has reared this most bastard of pop music that baffles bloggers and fans alike. To put it bluntly, Strange Powers knows his shit.
His new album Mmmmmmmm came out earlier in the year on AMDISCS, and has not only been a bright light in the dark tunnels of Witch House, but has also helped prove that this is not simply an in-joke shared amongst bloggers and netizens with too much time on their hands and too many drugs in their systems. As a few of us have never hesitated to proclaim, there is some seriously important music coming out of the exponentially infinite amount of artists who have thrown their music into the pot in hope of becoming the next great Witches Brew.