Call Upon The Wicked
Call Upon The Wicked
Company: Screaming Ferret
A flat mess across the board
Vicious Rumors' "Razorback Killers" have already delivered the knockout this year in terms of red, white and blue metal bravado. Now Jersey's Seven Witches step up with veteran James Rivera (Helstar) back in the coven. Rivera joins for this 10th anniversary record; eight records in ten years and Rivera's third for the group. You would be hard pressed to find a better record than Rivera and Frost's collaboration on "Passage To The Other Side" (2003).
Can they conjure the force again?
This is just a flat mess across the board, hounded by muddy guitar and almost lifeless production from Joey Vera (Armored Saint). These songs just lack that extra momentum to make them memorable. This is a far different effort than the 00s work with Rivera at the helm.
You can look at tired efforts like opener "Fields Of Fire" or "Lilith" and find these songs carry no real sense of purpose or anything to marry the listener. In years past Frost has dominated with sheer fire intensity and a mad display of talent. Here the riffs are broken, bruised and...borrowed. I can't fathom the nine minutes of "End Of Days" and even good songs like "Ragnarok" suffer from lack of direction (the chorus is just awful). Only true highlight here is the Dio-styled title track (an ode possibly?).
The bonus songs are older material re-recorded but sound as if they are coming from a bathroom stall--live from club unknown.
It took 4 years to make but Seven Witches are back with their 8th studio offering that smokes from the start with a brutal opener in 'Fields of Fire' and never lets up. Mayor of Riff City Jack Frost is the best reason to pick this up as he delivers a shredders delight and dizzying solos that'll leave you breathless. 3 bonus live tracks close out the album. Not of the best quality from a production standpoint but still shows their skill for live shows. If you like James Rivera of Helstar fame with his glass shattering screams, pounding drums and an old school sound with shades of Judas Priest then you'll dig this.