Exclusive Premiere: OLD MAN WIZARD – “Never Leave”

Old Man Wizard’s two-song release from last year put their diverse array of influences and knack for innovative songwriting on full display. The California trio reach across decades, drawing from classic psychedelia through proto-doom to black metal for their upcoming sophomore full-length Blame It All on Sorcery. Premiering today on AntiHero is one of the album’s more restrained tracks, “Never Leave”.

Old Man WizardThe song’s melancholic acoustic guitar, languorous ghost-noted drumming and prominent, nimble bass wouldn’t be out of place on Opeth’s 2003 album Damnation. Drummer Kris Calabio anchors the trio across shifting meters shaped to fit the chords laid down by his bandmates. Francis Robert’s slightly nasal voice lends an air of playfulness, which carries over through to the album’s heavier songs as well. Old Man Wizard’s love of Kansas-style 70s prog shines strongest towards the song’s conclusion when Calabio and bassist Andre Beller add their voices with backing harmonies.

No matter which song Old Man Wizard chose to premiere today, it’d be impossible to infer anything more about what can be expected with Blame It All on Sorcerysuch is the breadth of their songwriting. As I wrote last year in my review of their single, “count me very eager to hear the rest of the album to which these songs hopefully belong”. Now that I have, I can say with conviction that it’s one to anticipate.

Old Man Wizard will be releasing Blame It All on Sorcery on May 11th, 2018. The album is currently available for pre-order on Bandcamp.

Old Man Wizard

California’s OLD MAN WIZARD return with their new release Blame It All On Sorcery, a stunning tour-de-force that blends progressive, hard rock and metal into a brilliant 10-track album. The album will be released on May 11th, 2018.

Guitarist/Vocalist Francis Roberts commented “This album is the result of a years-long winding (and fairly bumpy) road. I started writing it before we released our first record (I think “Never Leave” actually almost made it onto Unfavorable), after which my old band, The Dread Crew of Oddwood, devoured a great deal of my creative attention and time for a few years (and I didn’t pay as much attention as I should have to Old Man Wizard). 

We actually almost recorded Blame It All On Sorcery at some point in 2014 or 2015, but Kris developed pretty bad tendonitis and we had to replace him on drums for a couple of shows. We all wanted him on the album so we decided to take a break until he was able to play again. I think that at the end of the day, all of those hurdles led to a more creative display of the songs, which have been on the back of my mind the whole time. I didn’t change any of them too much, but the time away from the band allowed me to really think about production choices and the presentation of the songs as a cohesive album. 

We went out on a limb with the whole Kickstarter thing, but enough people came through that we got the money to finish putting the album out on our own, and I can’t thank everyone enough for that. To the few of you who have been patiently waiting years for this, I apologize for the delay, and to everyone else, I really hope you love this thing as much as we do.”


Francis Roberts – Guitar, Vocals
Andre Beller – Bass Guitar, Backing Vocals
Kris Calabio – Drums, Backing Vocals

Mixed by Francis Roberts
Artwork by Valin Mattheis
Music & Lyrics by Francis Roberts
Engineered by Jordan Andreen, Adam Wollach, and Francis Roberts
Mastered by Eric Peabody – Viking Guitar Productions
Album Layout & Design by Nick Montemarano

Special thanks to Connor, Mark, and The Traveller


1. Beginnings and Happenstance
2. Sorcerer
3 The Blind Prince
4. Never Leave
5. Cosmo
6. Somehow
7. Innocent Hands
8. The Last Ride of the Ancients
9. The Vision
10. The Long-Nosed-Wiseman

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