By Brandon “B-Mac” McCarthy
Witchcraft and sorcery are roaming free at Nuclear Blast Records. Switzerland’s own Burning Witches are up to their usual tricks as they look to cast stronger spells. They will be releasing their fourth studio album, The Witch of the North, this Friday, and people should be ready for a hex is coming for us. It will be the group’s second album with new singer, Laura Guldemond. Formerly of Shadowrise, Epic Rock Choir, and Synergy Protocol, the new leader of this metal coven gave the world notice with last year’s Dance with the Devil. Being the new singer in an already established group can be tough because the fans will either embrace you or flip you off. Just ask Brian Johnson (AC/DC) and Sammy Hagar (Van Halen). On April 23, we conducted a Skype interview where I would ask her that question.
Laura is the second singer for the group, so she does not really know the true origins of the band name. However, she said they did have other options for names but could not remember them. Following the group on social media, they contacted her after seeing a video of her singing Judas Priest’s “Touch of Evil” and brought her in for an audition. As far as first impressions go, Laura mentions that she like the band’s chemistry with each other. The fans reaction to her coming on board was positive. With tours cancelled in 2020, they got into the groove of writing for The Witch of the North. The listened to the first song, “Flight of the Valkyries,” before the interview and really enjoyed. She wrote the lyrics, and according to her, it is about the mythology behind the Valkyrie creatures. We even joked about it being included in the upcoming Thor movie next year, hopefully. Besides that tune, Laura said the ones she personally likes are “We Stand as One,” “Thrall,” and “Nine Worlds.” For her 3 choices of island albums, she would want compilation records for melodic heavy metal, really heavy metal, and something relaxing. Those are interesting choices.
This was a good interview to have. Laura was striking, charming, and a bit humorous when she wants to be. She mentioned that Burning Witches plans to do some major touring next once all the restrictions are gone. I cannot wait for this group to get down to the U.S. so we can hang out and initiate my inclusion into their coven. The witches will fly high soon enough, and with Laura on the mic, they will be even more mesmerizing. To Laura Guldemond, I salute you. Horns up!!!
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