In contrast to the mythical themes that defined their first two albums, Seven Sisters’ third full-length presents itself with a more otherworldly sci-fi aesthetic. However, the music on Shadow Of A Fallen Star, Pt. 1 (Cherry Red Records) ultimately sustains the classy approach to Heavy Metal seen on its predecessors. Comparisons could be made to groups like Iron Maiden, Aria, and Tony Martin-era Black Sabbath with some helpings of Power Metal in the vein of Hammerfall and old school Kamelot.
Those Power Metal elements are especially apparent as the band dynamic has never sounded as energetic as it does here. Much of this can be attributed to their new rhythm section with the drums in particular picking up a harder-hitting style than before. This is balanced out by the dual guitars, which benefit from the more aggressive chugs while still providing plenty of precise leads and dynamic flourishes. The vocals are also well executed, exhibiting a lofty timbre and a regal mid-range that recalls Roy Khan in his prime.
This sharper musicianship is further reflected in the songwriting, which features snappy structures while keeping to the grandiose feel last seen in 2018’s The Cauldron And The Cross. While ‘Andromeda Rising’ and ‘Beyond The Black Stars’ start off strong, ‘The Artifice’ is a major highlight thanks to its sturdy mid-tempo gallop. ‘Whispers In The Dark’ and ‘Horizon’s Eye’ also make for particularly dynamic Power Metal flurries while ‘Wounds Of Design’ is another one of the band’s atmospheric power ballads. The latter certainly feels like a rarity in today’s climate…
It seems strange to look at Shadow Of A Fallen Star, Pt. 1 as its own entity with a second part presumably on the horizon, but this album just might be the most focused Seven Sisters effort thus far. The compact song structures and overall grandiose atmosphere are balanced incredibly well as the catchy tracks and sweeping musicianship ensures forty minutes of satisfying Heavy Metal. One can imagine the second part making just as strong an impression upon its release but in the meantime, fans seeking a more dignified approach should find this to their liking.
Buy the album here: https://sevensistersheavymetal.co.uk/album/seven-sisters
8 / 10