If La Luz are the joyful surfers that arrive leave the beach at sunset just in time to share a joint before mom calls for the family barbecue, L.A. Witch are the outcast badasses that appear once the sun goes down. They sound menacing and dangerous, as if some supernatural power (hence the name) had taken over them and they wandered the sands in eternal penitence.

But this isn’t Malibu, this is Death Valley.

L.A. Witch’s debut is a cohesive and unpretentious group of songs that drink from the customary multitude of sources available in these post-postmodernist, over-referential times — you see grunge, surf, rock’n’roll, psych, and punk sharing the same spaces in a very incestuous and permeable manner. So it comes as no surprise that one can identify glimpses of Sonic Youth, L7, Babes in Toyland, and even the occasional janglish Paisley Underground vibe gathered together in a deadly magic potion to be chugged as gluttonously as a teenager’s first hard liquor shooter.

The LP opens with the previously-unveiled ‘Kill My Baby Tonight’, an intense and slightly sinister track that embodies the album’s essence in perfection and serves as a warning of what lies ahead, proclaiming that kind of doomed love whose fate is but total and unavoidable damnation. Don’t get fooled by the rock-a-bye cadence of tunes like ‘Brian’ or ‘Baby in Blue Jeans’ though — after all, there is a difference between lullabies and hypnosis. Their addictive music crawls insidiously under your skin like one of those survivalist reptiles only found in endless, arid prairies, and whose only purpose in life is that of pure and simple survival.

Another clear feeling one immediately gets from this first full length venture is that L.A. Witch take their job very seriously. This a not a trio of girlfriends who gather at their parents’ garage after school to play a couple of tunes and have a laugh, but a mature female ensemble whose vehemence immediately demands total awe and respect for their art from the first to the very last chord.

The album is otherwise very similar to a highly-concentrated bomb shot alchemically crafted for one to obsess over, usually leading to tragic binge-related consequences. It’s short, powerful, and set to turn your insides out. Nonetheless, there’s no point in fighting the overwhelming, voodoo-like force that has descended upon you. Let yourself go; you’re under the spell.