7 Horns 7 Eyes
Throes of Absolution

It’s time to play the spin the wheel of metal genre label creation!!!!

What do we have here from Seattle’s 7 Horns 7 Eyes? prog-djent-death-core? death-djent–prog-core? Christian-djent-melo-core?

Whatever you call it and whatever the hype surrounding this release  what with teaser trailers, a Jeff Loomis (ex- Nevermore, who apparently made Century Media aware of these guys) guest performance, production/master super team of Andy Sneap and Jens Bogren (Amon Amarth, Opeth) and Travis Smith cover art, it’s all a bit of smoke and mirrors. Don’t get me wrong, this is indeed a fantastic release, but astute listeners only need to look to a 2011 release from one of the bands label mates for a more accurate and restrained look at what 7 Horns 7 Eyes really sound like; Vildhjarta.

Yup, add a bit of proggy shreddage, some orchestral atmospherics some slightly softer, graceful hues and some esoteric Christian lyrics (the name 7 Horns 7 Eyes is taken from Revelations 5:6) to Masstaden and you’ve got Throes of Absolution. Though it’s slightly less dense and one guitar less heavy and choppy, but overall its the same thickly layered, super hefty, mid paced staggering, stuttering riffs, deep death metal growls and a sprinkling of synths and some nice solo work and binjo!  Century Media wisely cashing in on one of 2011s best releases. Not to disrespect 7 Horns 7 Eyes, as I said before Throes of Absolution is very very good, and oozes skill with every lurch and lick, and it’s sure to be one of 2012s more critically acclaimed releases. But with Masstaden still residing on my ipod, there were a number of times where I had to check and see if I had a hidden or other wise unfamiliar Vildhjarta song playing.

And that’s really more of a compliment than a knock. The album has the same kind of controlled , restrained heft, rarely going over a double bass rumble here and there. But the stern restraint makes the album tick with a surly, heaving presence, despite the religious themes and tranquil orchestration. The rhythm section really pops and the vocals of ‘shiv’ are also attention grabbing with a deep menacing bellow. The songs are pretty long ranging from almost 5 minutes to almost 7 minutes, so there’s no quick,satisfying blasts or grooves as this album basically commands your attention with a forceful, devastating restraint throughout. The solos and synths, alleviate the brute force with some sumptuous shredding sweeps in every track, but notable moments include opener “Divine Amnesty”, “Delusions” and “Vindicator”. But those wanting to go directly to the heavy should check out the pummeling lurches of “Phumis: The Falsehood of Affliction” ‘The Hill Difficulty” and ” “The Winnowing” , though even the band’s heaviest moments sparkle with a sheen of proggy mastery and delicate keyboards.

Unfortunately, the band settle for a bit of a cliche with a closing , graceful 7 minute instrumental “Regeneration”, ending the album with a bit of a whimper rather than a  cementing wallop. But it doesn’t really lessen the potential these guy have and the diamond encrusted, jackhammer of an debut album they have dropped.

 

 

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
April 16th, 2012

Comments

  1. Commented by: AARONIUS

    I’ve been spinning their ep all weekend long. (basically it’s 2 songs from this album and an organ instrumental to bridge them). I am really looking forward to this one.

    I don’t really hear the Vildhjarta similarities though. To me 7H7E give off more of a cavernous doom/death metal feel, especially the vocals (Mikael Akerfeldt who?)

    To me Vildhjarta has more of that Meshuggah worship to their sound, y’know more springy 8 string sounds, of course I haven’t heard all of 7H7E’s album so maybe there’s more of that sound in the other material?

    Anyway these guys have my attention.


  2. Commented by: E. Thomas

    Aaaronius, yeah they are slightly less choppy, but check this http://youtu.be/CryTApBOgU0 then Check these and tell me that isn’t Vildhjarta sounding: http://youtu.be/3BiTFadkhU4 and http://youtu.be/NG9eyTDS83c. of course i appreciate everyone has a different set of ears and stuff….but id like to hear what you think when you hear the whole new album


  3. Commented by: AARONIUS

    Haha, Vindicator and The Winnowing are actually the songs that are on the ep.

    I agree a little bit more with your assesment of the similarities after comparing them right after each other, but like you said 7H7E is a lot less choppy. I guess that’s why I’m getting more of a doomy death metal kind of vibe (longer, more drawn out riffing).

    Yeah I definately am excited about the new 7H7E album. It’s been a pleasant surprise, as I kind of thought the new Meshuggah and Jeff Loomis were gonna be the only highlights for me early in this year.


  4. Commented by: Conor Fynes

    I thought that the Vildhjarta from last year was pretty good, although this whole ‘djent’ thing is admittedly wearing thin on me after a while. I’ll have to check these guys out.


  5. Commented by: Old Pick Axe

    I love this album more each and every time I hear it. Just cool as all hell. Magnificent.


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