The new and well-timed October release from female, Celtic electro-pop duo Vokxen “Sanctuary (The Witches Stone)”, lyrically inspired by the Islandmagee Witch trials of 1711, celebrates the supernatural, ancient folklore and female power whilst complimenting it with a modern synth-pop twist.  

The track tells the tale of a woman prosecuted for witchcraft fleeing persecution by the male witch hunters who are pursuing her, during the 1400s-1750 this was a common occurrence rooted in misogyny. 

Beginning with spellbinding, medieval-esque harp chords the song quickly transports the listener to a time of the past whilst rumbling, thunderous percussion drives the hair-raising atmosphere forwards as the story unfolds.

However, although this tense instrumentation creates an atmosphere of fear it is accompanied by lyrics celebrating the power of the woman being chased, describing her using the metaphor “cunning vixen”. This accompanied by lead singer Claire McCartney’s powerful vocals reminds the listener that despite the condemnation, the power of the witch and women will always live on.   

Although elements of the track are based in and reflective of the past one of its most impressive aspects is how it makes itself relevant to the present with its themes of feminism and contemporary instrumentation.

The use of elegant synth sounds woven into the track combined with the harp modernise the instrumentation as well as complimenting the enchanting harp sound beautifully. Vokxen proves with this single they are capable of providing both an insightful and aesthetically cohesive and enjoyable listening experience.