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Michael Müßig

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Stormezone Seven Sins Review

STORMZONE SEVEN SINS ALBUM COVER 300x180

Release Date:
3rd August 2015

Released By: Metal Nation Records

Genre: Heavy Metal

Links: Official Website , Facebook

Line Up:

John ‘Harv’ Harbinson – Vocals

Steve Moore – Guitars

Graham McNulty – Bass

Davy Bates – Drums

Track Listing:

01. Bathsheba

02. Another Rainy Night

03. Your Time Has Come

04. The One That Got Away

05. I Know Your Pain

06. Seven Sins

07. You’re Not The Same

08. Raise The Knife

09. Abandoned Souls

10. Special Brew

11. Master Of Sorrow

12. Born Of The Damned

For a country of its size, the small island of Ireland stands tall in its production of world famous and highly influential musical acts across a wide range of genres. From the gritty blues rock of Rory Gallagher, the traditional jigs of The Chieftains, the jazz, soul and R&B mixed brew of Van Morrison, and of course the all out rock assault of Thin Lizzy, it’s more than left its mark. But as far as pure Heavy Metal bands go, Ireland has never really pricked the map. But if I were a betting man, and bearing in mind that I believe the glory days of Metal are imminent again, then Belfast’s Stormzone should at least be muttered in the conversation. I witnessed these guys last Christmas in a brief, but brilliant, support to Metal legends Saxon when they played Dublin. Despite the brevity of the performance, you knew these guys were gold label. Now, following 2013’s brilliantly received Three Kings, their fifth album, Seven Sins, is ready to be unleashed.

And judging by opening track Bathsheba, you know you’re in for something very special. The creepy violin intro quickly erupts into a typical all out metal frenzy. Right from the opening chords of Another Rainy Night you’re immediately transported back to the glory days of rock. Not that I’m picturing Stormzone in stripy spandex and sporting Dynasty hairstyles, but everything about this tune, the instantly likable chorus and the crunching rhythm just exudes classic vibes. Like hosts of other metal bands, Stormzone have gone down the concept route. And hands up, to this point I really don’t know what that is, but it doesn’t matter one bit such is the supreme quality of the material.

Tracks like, Your Time Has Come and The One That Got Away, are pure fist clenchers and that also highlights the mastery of powerhouse guitarist Steve Moore. And just as I did when listening to Operation Mindcrime and Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son for the first time, that concept tag is ignored. There can be no doubting that Stormzone’s main muscle lies in the vocal genius of vocalist John ‘Harv’ Harbinson. He flexes his robust pipes with brash power on the excellent title track Seven Sins and on the full throttle and melodic You’re Not The Same.

Raise The Knife doesn’t quite reach the same levels as previous tracks until Moore, once again, brandishes his wizardry. From here on in it’s five star quality all the way, the pulverising Abandoned Souls, the galloping majesty of Special Brew, a song dripping in meaty metal hooks, hands down the best track on the album. The ever growing maturity in the bands song writing is blatantly evident in closing tracks Master Of Sorrow and Born Of The Damned, proving that they encapsulate in their armoury all the traits of a classic metal band. Raw power and potent melody.

You can clearly sense that the band wanted to go up a level from the Three Kings album, and that has duly been achieved, judging by the meticulous execution and the astute construction of the songs. Stormzone will probably never receive the same commercial accolades that have heaped upon the Iron Maiden’s and Metallica’s of this world. But their undisputed talents should and will be rewarded. A monster of an album has been unearthed here, which deserves to be on the frontline of the metal revolution.

Written by: Brian Boyle