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Seven Kingdoms - Seven Kingdoms Award winner

Seven Kingdoms
Seven Kingdoms
by Jonathan Maphet at 27 July 2010, 7:07 PM

There aren’t many female fronted Power Metal bands in the USA. As a matter of fact, there aren’t many female fronted power Metal bands period. Most female fronted Metal bands are of the gothic genre, I hope that doesn’t hinder their SEVEN KINGDOM’s career any because they deserve to make it to the big time. This band comes from Florida, a state not known for its Heavy Metal scene. The first song is a perfect opening entitled “Somewhere Far Away”. I truly love this song and have been wearing out as of late. This is their second album and I am waiting impatiently to get a copy of their first. If it is anywhere near as good as this one, then I am in for a really nice treat! The only weakness this album has is the two songs that feature growling vocals that utterly clash terribly against the beautiful voice of Sabrina Valentine, and what a stunning talent she is! I find it incomprehensible that they would put dirty vocals in a Power Metal album with epic female vocals of this quality. This isn’t Black Metal in any way shape or form, so when it happens, it totally takes you out of the moment. That said, if you skip those two songs, the rest of the album is near perfect. The production is very good as it should be considering it having been recorded at the well renowned Morrisound Studios.

The sound is very similar to two bands. First of these are ICED EARTH, try listening to the title track and NOT hearing ICED EARTH. If there wasn’t a woman singing, you’d think it was them! I have never heard anyone come so close to the patented Jon Schaffer riffing, and add to that a male screaming like Tim “The Ripper” Owens. It really is a perfect tribute to one of my all time favorite bands. The second band they sound influenced by being early HAMMERFALL. There is also plenty of double bass drumming to be heard. Then there is Sabine singing duel vocals with herself. Obviously pre-recorded and multi-layered. It’s very well done. I have heard this done as well only once, and that is with KISSPaul Stanley. If you have the best voice in the band, why not layer your vocals with more of your own? It sure worked out fine here. I am really amazed at how talented Sabine Valentine is. She sings in an epic and amazingly beautiful Piano sonata “A Murder Never Dead”. It’s truly the best ballad I have ever heard sung by a female fronted Metal band. They should be very proud of themselves, and just in case you think they have gone soft on you, they follow up that song with a fast up tempo slammer “Into the Darkness”.

Overall this is a fantastic must have of an album. Once again; the album’s only weakness is the growling vocals in two songs. I truly hope one or more of the band's members read this article so they know what one of the biggest fan of Power Metal thinks of the growling and I hope they ask around and find that others feel the same way. In my opinion, it truly has no place here whatsoever. In order to truly appreciate this sentiment, one has to hear the whole album. I am sure many will find my position to be sound. If you are into Power Metal, this needs to be in your collection in a hurry. My fellow Power Metal fans, it is time to show your appreciation of this truly great album by purchasing it, not downloading it. The Power Metal scene needs our unbridled support in order to survive and SEVEN KINGDOMS is certainly deserving of not only surviving, but flourishing as well!

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
  1. Prelude
  2. Somewhere Far Away
  3. The Ones Who Breathe The Flame
  4. Open The Gates
  5. Vengeance By The Sons Of A King
  6. Wolf In Sheep's Clothes
  7. A Murder Never Dead
  8. Into The Darkness
  9. Eyes To The North
  10. Thunder Of The Hammer
  11. Seven Kingdoms
Lineup:
Sabrina Valentine - Vocals
Camden Cruz - Guitars
Kevin Byrd -Guitars
Miles Neff - Bass
Keith Byrd - Drums
Record Label: Nightmare Records
     


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Edited 13 November 2018
 

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