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Ancestro (El Gran Altar)

Crank this to 9.2 of 11 - Editor's Pick

Released: 2017

Genre: StonerRock, Heavy Psych Rock

Sounds Like: Electric Wizard, Sleep, Karma To Burn

Ancestro’s sophomore release, El Gran Altar literally wigged out our high-end speaker system as the onslaught of fuzz caused continued static reverberation to occur after the blissful 42 minute journey came to an end. The trio hailing from Trujillo, Peru have a massive sound that features dirty fuzz and heartwarming stoner grooves. We found ourselves transported to the cliffs of Machu Picchu and Inca temple ruins as the roots bleed through as the backbone of this album.

Instrumental albums sometimes lull us into neutrality as we yearn for a vocalist to take things to the next level. Not the case for Ancestro as the trio are so goddam cohesive and have a beautiful chemistry that lets the music breathe. We honestly get the sense that added vocals would interrupt the canvas at hand.


Weight of the Heavy

8.5 out of 11

Fretwork Prowess

9.8 out of 11

Captivation and Variety

9.1 out of 11

Overall Album Flow

9.4 out of 11


10.2 out of 11

Album Cover Aesthetics

8.2 out of 11

Production Value

9.0 out of 11

Standout Tracks:

Runner up goes to the title track "Purga/El gran altar". A wonderful meandering track that features some stellar 70s style keyboards towards the middle of the track. A cathartic purge of the senses indeed. Terrific highs and lows on this track. Ultimately the closer "Gallinazos" which apparently signifies some sort of turkey vulture stops us in our tracks. The closer is an absolute gem of fuzz and melodic beauty. Perhaps one of the most exceptional tracks for contrast of 2017. The clarity fretwork that Diego delivers at the onset melds so well into a fuzz tone pilgrimage that sequel further into Victor’s tribal percussion work. Can’t avoid also mentioning Boris’ brilliant bass undercurrent throughout.

Alcohol Pairing:

Magdalena/Muertecita (8.6 ABV) A Peruvian double IPA. Hoppy yet crisp and clean. The higher alcohol content will sneak-up on you just like how quickly this album flies by over its 42 minute span. Perfect balance and just enough heaviness.

Lasting Impression:

We all need instrumental albums in our collection that can transport us into a unique atmosphere. El Gran Alter does just that and we appreciate its well thought out flow and imagery without words. Throughout 2017 we found ourselves a bit indifferent towards many of the instrumental releases. It was refreshing to stumble upon Ancestro right at the tail end of the year. Cool down your speakers before delving into this fuzz tone pilgrimage. Its a refreshing one indeed.

Track Listing:

1. Icaro- 2:16

2. Mareacion- 8:12

3. Aguijon 3:16

4. Purga/ El gran altar 12:14

5. Aqua muerta- 10:09

6. Gallinazos- 6:26

Band Members:

Boris Baltodano - Bass

Diego Caitlin - Guitar

Victor Garcia - Percussion

Follow All Them Witches: Bandcamp / Facebook


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