CD Reviews

Seven The Hardway - 'Seven The Hardway' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/67/50/0e/885_seventhehardwayseventhehardway_1292970557.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     December 21, 2010    
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
2736   0   1   0   0   0

Artist

Label

Talented people proving how talented they are, but be warned, it's not an easy listen.

Although an unfamiliar name, Seven The Hardway is a US supergroup that brings together three consummate musicians who should be well known to anyone who really knows their rock and metal. Featuring ex-Yngwie Malmsteen and Royal Hunt vocalist Mark Boals, solo and Project Driver guitarist/keyboardist Tony Macalpine and Soul Sirkus/Southern Sons drummer Virgil Donati, all three have a history together, with MacAlpine and Donati both being members of Planet X and Steve Vai’s band, and all of them being three-quarters of Ring Of Fire. Seven The Hardway however, despite having the outstanding level of musicianship you would expect from its collaborators, also contains a lot of surprises.

I’d already had an e-mail conversation about this album with our resident virtuoso guitarist expert, the lovely Monica Castedo-Lopez, who assured me that my initial aversion to the sheer heaviness and modern down-tuned vibe of the music, would soon pass. To some extent she was right, but after half a dozen plays there are still parts that are so alien to my senses that they make the most obtuse work of bands like Fates Warning and Zero Hour sound like a 3 chord boogie band.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music


At their most accessible Seven The Hardway play inventive progressive metal with well thought out arrangements and multi-layered vocal parts. Opener ‘Liar’ is stark and modern sounding at first, but familiarity reveals there are hooks aplenty and Boals sings his ass off, similarly the lumbering metal riffs of ‘All I Had’ make for one heavy dark verse, but the chorus and MacAlpine’s shred solo (straight from his early neo-classical albums) turns it on it’s head. ‘The Wall’ is another one with harsh uncommercial riffs juxtaposed with Boals’ highly melodic vocals, whilst the light and shade of ‘Good And Evil’ could almost be Dream Theater, right down to the LaBrie-like vocals. The only totally accessible track is the subtle ballad ‘Where I’m Going’, which is built around acoustic guitars and has an excellent acoustic guitar solo. ‘Blame’ is another oddity, a modern juggernaut of a tune that comes across as a more metallic and angular Winger.

It’s not all good news though, the likes of ‘Solitary Man’ and ‘The Cage’ have too many time changes and crazy rhythms from Donati to be totally cohesive, whilst the rap vocals on ‘Guilt’ don’t really do the song any favours. With a powerful production and good separation of the instruments, Seven The Hardway have made an album that can be appreciated by people who admire good musicianship, and I have no doubt that Messrs. Boals, Donati and MacAlpine (who also handles bass) wholeheartedly believe in what they’re doing. However, in the complexity of the route they’ve chosen I fear they’ll alienate a lot of people who like their back catalogues. Seven The Hardway is the sound of talented people proving how talented they are, but be warned, it’s not an easy listen.

Phil Ashcroft

Share this on the web.

User reviews

There are no user reviews for this listing.

 


Comments (0)add comment

Write comment

security image
Write the displayed characters


busy

Member Login



Calendar

<<  October 2017  >>
 Mo  Tu  We  Th  Fr  Sa  Su 
        1
  2  3  4  5  6  7  8
  9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
3031     

Search Here

Shout Here

Latest Message: 5 days, 18 hours ago
  • Rocktopia Te : AMBERIAN DAWN premiere their new music video for 'I'm The One' on Rocktopia!
  • Johns Band : Boulevard "Luminescence" is superb album, and Accept "The Rise Of Chaos" you can find review in Fireworks issue 80 . Same with Black Country Communion "BCCIV." All with Band interview & album review in issue 80
  • Rocktopia Te : Rocktopia interview JOEY TEMPEST of EUROPE and premiere THE UNGUIDED's new video!
  • Berny : You can now pre - order Fireworks Magazine #80! Please follow this «link»
  • Rocktopia Te : Great interview with JON STEVENS (INXS, Noiseworks) is now online! Check out the review of his latest album, too.
  • Berny : Rocktopia EXCLUSIVE music video premiere: H.E.A.T - 'Redefined'!
  • Rocktopia Te : Discover new music with Rocktopia: Today we posted 20 new album reviews! More to come ...
  • Berny : @Johns Band: Thanks! Can we expect a review from you in the not too distant future? :) Having said that, I'd like to thank you for all your support! I know that our forum is far too 'silent' at the moment, but this is going to change soon. Watch this space & once again: THANKS! ... ;)
  • Johns Band : Good post for THE WHO "TOMMY LIVE AT THE ROYAL ALBERT HALL" I have pre - order double CD version.
  • Berny : New interviews: We spoke with Jon C Butler & Sass Jordan! Check out the Rocktopia interviews section.
  • PJS : Mid September.
  • KI2000 : Really like the latest issue of Fireworks, when will 80 be out??
  • Hysteria : Best melodic rock site! Thanks for the hard work guys! \m/
  • Berny : Rocktopia July 2017 update: 50 new album reviews, 17 live reviews, 4 interviews. In addition, we are now posting daily news from Monday to Friday. Have fun! :)
  • Berny : Another Rocktopia UK music video premiere: 'tonight' by The Midnight Ghost Train. Pls. check out the LATEST NEWS on the front page!
  • Rocktopia Te : Check out the latest LIVE reviews!
  • mattnavy : For the record, the first issue of my order should commence with the latest edition.
  • mattnavy : Ok let me know please.
  • Berny : @ mattnavy: We'll sort it out now.
  • mattnavy : Just checked my post, still nothing arrived. My postcode is PL21 9JP.
  • Berny : @ mattnavi: I forwarded your question to the Fireworks team. Thanks for your patience.
  • mattnavy : I bought years membership two weeks ago, commencing from the latest edition. Nothing has turned up. Can you let me know if there has been a problem.
  • Berny : 25 new album reviews incl. Harem Scarem, Mr. Big, Bonfire, Mostly Autumn, TEN, Cheap Trick and many more! Check out our Revíews section!
  • Berny : @mattnavy: Pls. click on "Shop" - > "Fireworks Mini Shop" in the TOP menu on Rocktopia or send an e - mail to «email»
  • mattnavy : I cant seem to work out how I buy the latest edition or a years subscription of firework magazines.
  • Berny : Fireworks #79 out now! Ye Banished Privateers video premiere! 14000 words interview with Harem Scarem! New album and live reviews!
  • Rocktopia Te : 20 new album and 10 new live reviews!
  • Berny : Thanks Rob, review was updated!
  • rocktopiarob : Hi in the Bad For Good review - please replace "Rundgren's absurdly genius guitar playing" with "Davey Johnstone's absurdly genius guitar playing"
  • LeChef : Thumbs up!!!

Only registered users are allowed to post

Follow Us

FacebookTwitterYoutubeGoogle