Seven Day Sonnet – Reprisal
There’s nothing like opening up an album with a blistering mini guitar solo, thrashing guitars and double bass pedals, and a deep guttural scream. These first few seconds set the tone for the rest of this hard-hitting debut album by Seven Day Sonnet. It may be heavy but Reprisal is full of rising and falling melodies and even a softer, more heart-felt track thrown into the mix. “All Fall Down” begins this hard rock journey and I think it’s safe to say that it’s my favorite track. I think it has to do with the way lead singer Ben VanBuskirk growls in the chorus. Such a deep evil growl juxtaposed with a beautiful raw voice sends shivers down my spine. This song is already reaching a high play count on my iTunes. Melodies mixed with pure metal riffs and interlacing singing with screams remind me of bands like Chevelle, Breaking Benjamin, and Avenged Sevenfold. Seven Day Sonnet know when to play rough and when to play nice mixing metal, hard rock, and heavy alternative sounds. It’s heavier than most hard rock but not quite as brutal as metal. It’s a case of Goldie Locks and the three bears. This rock album is just right.
It’s so easy sometimes to get lost in all the riffs and screaming of hard rock bands these days. Many of their albums become simply tiring to listen to but Seven Day Sonnet is able to overcome the repetitiveness of it’s competitors. Pure, raw, aggressive talent is just oozing from every song on Reprisal. “The Butcher” stands out in my mind with it’s explosive intro. Guitars, bass, and drums are all at full throttle; the amps are definitely turned up to 11 on this one. But let’s not forget about lyrics here. Lyrics are just as important as sound. This song makes a great metaphor for how we tend to complicate our lives. It certainly made me think of who or what is butchering my life.
Things calm down a bit midway on the track “Saturdays.” Of course I don’t mean you should expect a ballad from Barry Manilow. Think more in terms of Metallica’s “Nothing Else Matters.” We get an acoustic guitar added but I also hear a faint piano and string instruments as well. Of course no hard rock ballad can stay soft for long and before you know it, drums are pounding away with electric guitars full throttle. It’s quite an epic love song and it’s certainly more intense than your typical sappy love song.
Reprisal ends with “A Solitary Existence” which may sound depressing but the song is anything but. The song opens with exquisite drumming and then moves into a steady hardcore rhythm. Halfway through it gets quiet as Ben sings “People should not know the pain I hold in my heart / Can’t imagine the freezing terror of my loss.” This song is the epitome of the album “”evoking all the emotions this band has to offer. Every band member puts all he has to offer on this spectacular song. Reprisal comes full circle and leaves you feeling satisfied and happy that you finally found music that was more than just “˜okay.’