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Seven Kingdoms - Zenith

Seven Kingdoms
Zenith
by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 10 August 2022, 1:23 PM

Since the middle of the 70’s, the seeds of all Metal genres that were about to be done in the USA were sown. Names as BLUE ÖYSTER CULT, AEROSMITH and other Hard Rock giants, along with RIOT, THE RODS and some others would be as important as JUDAS PRIEST, MOTÖRHEAD and BLACK SABBATH to ignite the flame of USA Metal scene. This is the reason that explains why acts as SEVEN KINGDOMS sounds a bit different from others. Take a bit on “Zenith” to understand what these words mean.

They’re into a trend that resembles a lot the old days acts when Metal in USA as just beginning, because some elements of Thrash Metal can be heard (especially on the riffs of the guitars), a heavy dose of Power Metal influences and those features that are personal for US Metal (the care in the musical arrangements, the need to use expressive and catching melodies, a refined instrumental technique that fits on the songs, etc). To some, they can sow some resemblances with ICED EARTH, RUTHLESS, OMEN, MALICE, FIFTH ANGEL and others, but’s because they’re a US Metal act after all. And the songs sound full of the North American melodic hooks, catching, full of energy and life, so, what are you waiting for to listen to “Zenith”? The production worked in a way to make things sound clean and defined in a form that allows the fans to understand fully what’s being played, the minimal aspects of the band’s music, but with a sonority that allows some aggressiveness to be breath some energy on the songs.

The album can be said as a link between US Metal past and present, because all the elements of the 80’s can be heard in the band’s music, but with a fresh energy. So it’s not difficult to fall in love with songs as “Diamond Handed” (excellent melodies and guitar riffs, but pay attention to the Hard Rock touches on the chorus), “A Silent Remedy” (this one shows how NWOBHM adrenaline contributes to US Metal’s musical core, but the refined rhythmic parts created by bass guitar and drums are amazing), “Love Dagger” (excellent hooks inherited from 70’s Hard Rock, and check how some melodic accessibility is allowed to be presented on some parts, especially on the chorus, and the vocals are truly excellent), “Chasing the Mirage” (a heavier song with defined melodies, and one can hear clearly the influences of PRIEST/MAIDEN on the arrangements), “Magic in the Mist” and “Universal Terrestrial” (both have parts that can remind the modern models used on Power Metal, especially due the tempos). But pay attention to their version for “I Hate Myself for Loving You”, and old success of JOAN JETT & THE BLACKHEARTS, here a bit heavier due the instrumental tunes of the band, but it shows how Hard Rock influences are present in US Metal.

To end this review, the best thing to say is that “Zenith” can’t be said as a classic or something like that. But you’re looking for fun in Metal, SEVEN KINGDOMS is the perfect band for you.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Diamond Handed
2. A Silent Remedy
3. Love Dagger
4. Chasing the Mirage
5. Valonqar
6. Empty Eyes
7. Magic in the Mist
8. Universal Terrestrial
9. The Water Dance
10. Life Signs
11. I Hate Myself for Loving You (Joan Jett & The Blackhearts cover)
Lineup:
Sabrina Valentine - Vocals
Kevin Byrd - Guitars
Camden Cruz - Guitars
Keith Byrd - Drums
Record Label: Distortion Music Group
     


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