This is an album of calm, serene, and playful music inspired by the nordic/scandinavian forests and mountains. Appearing on guitar is Ken Senior, who has often been complimented on his warm, melodic guitar style, and he fits perfectly into the melodic music on this album. Also some medieval inspired passages - pastoral, mystic and, well, just different.
After this album had sold out the entire first pressing, Bjorn brought the original master tapes back to his (now updated) studio and brushed up the sound, as well as re-recorded a few bits. The result is a new and improved version of "Witchwood", published in 1998.
Reviews for "Witchwood":
"There are many albums I play when I want to really chill out, but I keep coming back to Witchwood. The shifting moods and melodies manage to be endlessly surprising and yet profoundly soothing - even the occasional breaks in the tranquility (such as The Town Of Witchwood) have their own ways of blowing away the cobwebs, like an invigorating shower! Plenty of artists make 'relaxation' music, but this is out of their league. You could say Witchwood is the most musical 'relaxation' album - or the most relaxing musical one. I hope Bjorn revisits this style sometime in the future". - Nick Green, United Kingdom
"Witchwood is a mostly quiet "back to nature" kind of thing, complete with the sounds of water running and birds singing. Althrough "The Void" might generally be considered as Lynne's first full blown conceptual album, Witchwood surely led the way.
What really makes this album a joy to listen to, is the number of small "bridges", connecting the various songs. The music seamlessly flows into and out of the different parts, while it all appears to hang together. One theme is played in variuos incarnations, giving you the feeling that that it's all building up to a rousing finale.
When you find yourself comfortably into the laid back feeling of this album, Lynne suddenly surprises you with some really symphonic arrangements, making the album a joy to listen to.
It's difficult to mention specific tracks, since it all hangs together, but the excellent "Town of Witchwoode", "Homeland-Farmland", "The Sinister Maze", the title tune "Witchwood" and my all time favorite "The Gathering" deserves special mention.
It might sound a bit outdated and light when compared to Bjorn's later efforts, but is somehow has remained one of my personal favourites, and in my humble opinion, Witchwood is one of the best albums ever released."
Morten Rønning, Norway
"Witchwood is for me a very nice album... Very quiet... with many short transitions between the songs... It introduces you into a fantastic world which is better and better during the whole CD. I hear it when I want the peace that I can't encounter in my city... Very nice piece of music..." - Urko Alberdi, Spain
"Witchwood is still my favorite CD. I don't listen it as often I did a couple of years ago, but still such songs as The Faery Woods and The Town of Witchwood get me in a great mood (especially if I'm enough sleepy :). I think this is Lynne's best fantasy CD, I don't all that much of the new sound of the three last CDs (though haven't yet heard the latest, but MP3s I've heard haven't been special). Worst song in Witchwood is the last and main song, unfortunatenaly...I like the sound of it but I hate the singing. That is why I listen to MIDI or XM version of the song rather. Witchwood is the first CD I bought and stays the best. It is unique, tells about different moods, flying around different themes and really makes you enjoy it - you really see yourself wandering around lands. If I could rate this CD, I would give full 10. Hope Bjorn makes something like this but not a copy of this some day!" - Vesa Piittinen, Finland
"Bjorn's best CD album, with Dreamstate, the Void and Wizard of the Winds (I have almost all his CDs, Colony being not released yet). Extremely soothing AND dynamising. Looking forward to get Return to Witchwood !! EXCELLENT." - Mahendra Tallur, France
"I'm a new listener to Bjorn's music and started with "return to Witchwood". After several days of listening to that CD I was compelled to purchase "Witchwood". I was not disappointed. Its always on at work as a background music - hopefully productivity increases. Excellent Stuff!" - StuC, UK