|Seven Thorns - II
8 March 2014
02. Eye Of The Storm
04. Queen Of Swords
06. Night Of Temptation
08. You're Not Brave (If You're Not Scared)
09. A Joker's Game
10. After The Storm
11. Mamma Mia [ABBA cover] [bonus]
Completed since early 2013, yet officially released in 2014 under their new record label, Sonic Revolution, Seven Thorns' third album is named… II.
I give up.
On a more serious tone, though, II is your typical heavy power metal fun ride, with the now almost customary "Intro" telling a lot about what the album is going to provide, as harpsichord keys and strong guitars create a relatively authentic atmosphere, given the genre which we're talking about.
Luckily for Seven Thorns, the old power metal basics still have something to offer, since the band doesn't get that far from those overused stereotypes. The inspired and live-based choruses do partially make up for rhythmic sections that are way too stale to keep the attention high, and the long, fast soloing could resemble some DragonForce or Malmsteen, but not having Li or Yngwie as guitarists, those too end up wandering around, relying on rather trivial arpeggios and such.
However, you don't listen to these kind of bands for the technique, or for the songwriting extravaganza, but for the unpretentious fun. And Seven Thorns, within their limits, provide this. Singer Erik Blomkvist, now replaced by Gustav Blide, gives the album some needed personality, and the heavy and neoclassical influences try to provide some variety, even if their goal is not really achieved. In fact, despite having gained a courage point with the marvellous - and risky - cover of ABBA's "Mamma Mia", the band lacks the bravery of going out of their safe ground, providing an album in which circa eight tracks sound exactly the same.
This said, the overall impression is that with basic musicianship, an even more trivial songwriting and a foreseeable pace the band managed to reach its purpose: an easy, fun and simple album. No finery, no flights of fancy: just pretty raw power metal. Yet, is it a positive sign for the original material if so many people's favourite track is the ABBA cover?
Written on 04.09.2014 by
Hopefully you won't agree with me, diversity of opinions is what makes metal so beautiful and varied.
So... critics and advices absolutely welcome.