California band The Spell released an album last March called HA HA, VWAH LAH. It didn’t garner very much fanfare and it still hasn’t found much traction beyond their home town of Long Beach. The band’s style of music is something of an eclectic one, with some tracks heavy with blues influences whereas others have more of a classic rock vibe. There are even some tracks that take a lot from R&B. So, The Spell covers a broad spectrum in terms of musical style, which makes for nice surprises while listening through the album.
The album itself was mastered and mixed by one of the band members in their home studio where the entire album was also recorded. This fact is rather impressive given the final product has very few noticeable issues. Generally speaking, many home albums produced in home studios rely too much on distortion in order to cover up the imperfection often associated with do-it-yourselfers. HA HA, VWAH LAH has a number of memorable tracks the highlights of which are: Bury Me Alive, Where Are We Going and Use You Like I Used To.
Bury Me Alive has a great intro reminiscent of something you might hear from the late great Freddie Mercury. The track relies heavily at first on the lead singer’s vocals and it’s not until the tail end of the track that the instrumental portions take center stage. Use You Like I Used To is much more of a sultry number, reveling in the idea of rekindling old flames in a cold-hearted manner. The song is similar in style to bands like Garbage.
The music video that the band posted on YouTube back in October of last year, for the track Pieces of Me is also worth mentioning. The video has a very literal interpretation of the song’s lyrics and features a group of lingerie clad cannibals consuming pieces of The Spell’s members. In a music video first the lead singer’s dick is cut off and then licked by one of his sexy captors.
The Spell may rely on the style of past greats but in an industry filled with musicians who are practically impersonators, this band stands apart.