There’s a textural world in the land of All Them Witches that is rare in the age of surface-dusting rock; one filled with guitars that meander off into space, a voice – belonging to singer Charles Michael Parks, Jr – that haunts you into bluesy submission and lyrics that hint but never give way to a spelled-out truth. They’ve always been one of our favorite local bands, seemingly unfazed by any any musical constraints the city might provide – using their songs to drift to a psychedelic, atmospheric space that seems limited only by their own imaginations, which, as evidenced on their newest LP, Sleeping Through the War, are all quite expansive. Produced by Dave Cobb, songs like “Alabaster” speak with the fury of a rock & roll oracle, while “Bruce Lee” thrashes like a seventies CBGB seen through a kaleidoscope. Truth is, though All Them Witches is only 1/4 a Nashville-rising band these days – only Ben McLeod lives in Nashville – Robby Staebler, Parks and Van Cleave came together here, and are signed to the now Nashville-based New West records. The vinyl for the record was pressed here, too – and this is an album that should be listened to as a complete collection, from acetate to ears, with A.D.D singles-junkies be damned. We asked All Them Witches to chart through a few of their regular haunts when the band is back in town. And Snag Sleeping Through the War here.
All Them Witches Nashville Five /// By Ben McLeod
Although I am the only one who still lives here, our band still calls Nashville home. We rehearse here, record here, begin every tour here and always fly out of BNA for Europe tours. Once Parks, Robby and Allan get into town for one of these reasons, these 5 places are always frequented.
Eastside Music Supply — I feel like our band is here every day when in town. Aside from having an amazing selection of gear, owners Blair and Brandon always make us feel welcome and have become good friends. Sometimes we will just grab a 12 pack and hang there like surf rats in a surf shop.
Devon Self Storage Madison — We store everything here. (I won’t tell you which unit) This place is great because of the access and peace of mind knowing how secure it is…I guess this should be normal for most storage facilities. It is super close to my house. Every tour begins here with us picking up our gear and freaking out about how we will fit everything in the trailer.
Mickey’s Tavern — I do not feel super original including this place…but that is just how great of a bar it is. We recently hung out here with all the Eastside Music Supply dudes in the back patio and it got pretty rowdy.
My Garage — The ultimate “man cave” (see below). Full of gear, boxes of vinyl, tape machines and cables tangled beyond salvage. Everyone basically stays with me when in town, so we hang out in here a lot. We demo’d Sleeping Through The War in my garage on a Tascam 388. The room actually sounded pretty good!