Album Reviews

Seven Kingdoms – Decennium

Hailing from the Sunshine State of Florida, U.S. power metal veterans Seven Kingdoms are well into a decade long career of churning out quality melodic heavy metal to their ever-growing legion of fans. Taking a “do it yourself” approach, Seven Kingdoms is currently in the midst of a crowd-funding campaign for their latest album release titled Decennium, which is set for release of January 31, 2017. The album was recorded with Jim Morris (Iced Earth, Savatage, Death) and Phil Pluskota (Abiotic, King Conquer) at North Avenue Studios and Morrisound Recording. The band mixed the album at Morrisound Recording and was mastered by Jacob Hansen (Avantasia, Evergrey, Volbeat).

Decennium is a compilation of 10 tracks, two of which (In The Walls and Undying) were featured on the 4 song EP In The Walls, which served as a primer for fans waiting for the full length album. If the In The Walls EP was meant to be the appetizer, then Decennium is without a doubt the main course! It’s been quite a while since 2012’s The Fire Is Mine, and Seven Kingdom’s newest release is well worth the wait!

The album hits hard right out of the gate with the fast and melodic guitar riffing of Stargazer (not to be confused by the Rainbow classic), which features a great call and response chorus by lead vocalist Sabrina Valentine. As previously noted, the next two songs, Undying and In The Walls were featured on the previous EP and they blend in perfectly with the rest of Decennium’s material. This album has an energy and take no prosoners atmosphere with nary a ballad to be found, just classic power metal in the tradition of Blind Guardian, Helloween, and Hammerfall.

For the comic book ner…ermmmmm…aficionados, the next song, The Tale of Deathface Ginny will appeal to your inner geek, as the songs subject matter is based on the comic book Pretty Deadly from Image Comics. The song, like the comic touches on western and horror folklore with a heavy metal backdrop. Castles In The Snow is an epic metal anthem with a powerful chorus complete with a vocal choir.

Kingslayer starts off with the rumbling bass of Aaron Sluss and bursts into an all out metal assault with guitar tandem Camden Cruz and Kevin Byrd, and the double bass drum attack of Keith Byrd, with Valentine’s melodic, yet powerful vocals soaring triumphantly.

The albums pacing never slows down with strong power metal anthems The Faceless Hero with it’s razor sharp riffing and breakneck speed. Neverending has a classic 80’s Euro-metal feel to it and has a memorable guitar harmony line running through the song. Intricate and masterful guitar work highlight Hollow, another fast track which has a fantastic vibe and powerful vocals by Valentine, who really comes into her own throughout Decennium. The album’s closing track, the epic power metal glory of Awakened From Nothing. With Decennium, Seven Kingdoms continues their tradition of playing and recording classic sounding power metal with a modern feel to it minus any of the cheesiness that is sometimes associated with this genre of metal. I look forward to hearing lots of cuts from Decennium live when Seven Kingdoms joins Evergrey, Need, and Ascendia on a U.S. tour run in the Spring of 2017.

The brand new lyric video for Stargazer by Wayne Joyner :

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