Maybe I’m living up to the album’s title by deferring to the original back cover of Witch’s Lazy Bones. Yet I’m reasonably certain that I could scarcely do better at describing the transportive moods that the Zambian psych-rockers evoke: “If you’re feeling depressed, low, disturbed, irritable, out-of-sorts, sad, frustrated or wildly demented, then folks, we suggest you seek out a quiet place, indulge in some soothing meditation and cut away that headache by listening to this inspirational album (we’ve even included a copy of our lyrics to assist those who have difficulty in understanding the messages we transmit, in the hope that this will help them dig the LP in total). We would also like to extend out thanks to all those who have supported us in the past – we wish you well, brothers and sisters. To those of you who have been unkind and deliberately troublesome, we suggest you go jump in the lake specially featured for you on our cover…Right on, Witch!”
Excavated by the mighty Egon, Stones Throw/Now-Again have quietly spent much of the last year highlighting the unsung brilliance of Zam-rock groups like Amanaz, Rikki Ililonga, and Musi-O-Tunya. None of these bands ever created noise outside of the erstwhile Rhodesia, but during the decade following independence, they fused a love of Hendrix, Cream, Love, and American folk with native rhythms. At a time during which the price of copper (Zambia’s principal export) plummeted, Witch and Co. capture a sense of uplift and a simmering caustic side that remains equally powerful a quarter century later. Recommended if you like wah-wah pedals, eye of newt, psychedelic guitars, funky drum breaks, Madlib’s Medicine Show #3, cauldrons, swag, and the occasional acid flashback. Not recommended if you like Winston-Salem cigarettes, Salem, pointy hats, or scag.