Friday, July 19, 2024

Seven Spires create magical gloom in A Fortress Called Home

Seven Spires are a symphonic power metal band from Boston, but their sound is distinctly European in a way that only a force like power metal can bring out. There’s a great deal of theatricality to songs like ‘Impossible Tower’ and the massive opener, ‘Songs upon Wine Stained Tongues’. 

The first half of the album has many of the heavier moments of the album including the single, ‘Almost Town’, which has this Castlevania feel to it. If you were to say this album was full of vampires… I’d believe you. The whole album has this strange Disney/Castlevania tone, it’s a balance of childlike wonderment and dark fairytale, that works surprisingly well. 

There’s a great deal of variety on the album; the doom-laden steamroller of ‘Where Sorrows Bear My Name’ is a highly effective balance of crushing guitar riffs and dual vocals with this overwhelming sense of dread. In another world, it would be the perfect villain theme in some gothic musical, filled with despair and lit only by a glimmer of hope. 

The latter half of the album leans into this gothic tone quite well, the twin vocals give a sense of dialogue between characters and the gloomy music behind them fills out the grandiose production. There are still warm moments littered throughout the record like the soaring leads of ‘No Place For Us’ which features some stellar guitar work held up by epic sweeping strings. The heaviness is always present throughout these Disney-esque moments so it doesn’t feel anywhere near as cheesy as it should, it’s actually rather effective. 

It sonically feels like Seven Spires’ attempt at Imaginaerum by Nightwish, you can especially feel that on ‘Love’s Souvenir’ which tonally and structurally feels reminiscent of ‘Slow Love Slow’ with its lounge singer style buildup and tense atmosphere before launching into the full-on assault. 

The record closes with the final single, ‘The Old Hurt of Being Left Alone’ which is yet another sweeping giant of a track elevated by magnificent guitar work that one could only replicate the feeling of by playing on top of a mountain. Given how gothic this album feels, it feels appropriate to have the album end with such a triumphant note. 

‘A Fortress Called Home’ manages to create a magical atmosphere full of darkness without sacrificing the fun and whimsy you’d expect from this genre. Tracks from this album should be present on your Skyrim playlist the next time you inevitably decide to be a stealth archer. 

A Fortress Called Home is available June 21st via Frontiers Music.

Lamestream Lydia
Lamestream Lydia
Self-proclaimed journalist, Progressive rock enthusiast and the most American sounding person you're ever likely to meet in the North of England

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Seven Spires are a symphonic power metal band from Boston, but their sound is distinctly European in a way that only a force like power metal can bring out. There's a great deal of theatricality to songs like 'Impossible Tower' and the massive opener,...Seven Spires create magical gloom in A Fortress Called Home