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Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
27
All I See Is War
Format: Audio CD|Change
Price:$10.79+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on May 11, 2018
Sevendust have launched their 12th studio album to date, is it a return to form amidst a Nu Metal revival?

(Review of album starts at paragraph 3)

Sevendust have been one of those bands that have persisted through the last 20 years and have continuously put out solid records, while also being able to maintain popularity. Sevendust is also for me, unfortunately, a band that fell off my radar for a long time. I have their Animosity album which i enjoyed back when it released and have always generally liked their music. I also incredibly enjoy Projected(side project of both John Connolly and Vinnie Hornsby) immensely. I've even seen them live, which was fantastic. Over the years I have seen their albums continue to get good reviews and planned on buying them, but never did for some reason or another.

That changed when I saw the debut song and video for this album Dirty. I saw it on my YouTube feed and the thumbnail was a picture of a dark room with florescent lights surrounding the band vertically. I thought, 'Ah that must be an old video by them, looks very Matrix/2000's-y. So I clicked on it and the song kicked me in the gut so to say. It started out with the crunchy strumming, then kicked into that signature Sevendust heavy, yet melodic riffs. That double bass by the incredible Morgan Rose thumping behind the guitars and bass. Lajon's unique baritone growl then comes in, carrying with it that gruff aggression his voice always seems to portray. The song left me kind of in aw, so I pre-ordered All I See Is War immediately, then because I couldn't get enough, I bought Kill The Flaw, which was a good album in it's own right. Spoilers, I plan and buying into their back catalog until I own all their music.

Today Sevendust's new album graced my doorstep and unfortunately I didn't get to listen to it immediately, however that time has passed. Listening to All I See Is War, you are graced with soaring guitar and bass riffs, fantastic drum work and Lajon Witherspoon's fantastically unique growls and gruff cleans. The album definitely has a hint of that Nu Metal era sound, but then again, did Sevendust ever truly move away from that sound to begin with? While they have experimented with many different variations of their sound over the last two decades, Sevendust have always retained a very signature sound. Whether that's due to Lajon being an instantly recognizable voice, Morgan Rose's excellent drumming or John and Clint's distorted yet melodic guitars backed up by Vinnie's thundering bass, when Sevendust comes on, you know who it is.

While all that may spell that it just sounds like another Sevendust album, that wouldn't be true. All I See Is War definitely shifts gears multiple times during it's 12 track run. Whether you have the more Nu Metal invoking Dirty and Risen, heavy metal sound of Medicated, closer The Truth or a slower soaring hard rock sound like God Bites His Tongue, Moments, Not Original and Cheers, there is plenty of variety on this album. Moments even contains a fantastic piano piece being played behind it's hard rock track.

Musically these guys are still firing on all cylinders. John Connolly and Clint Lowery lay down some fantastic riffs and leads throughout the album, complementing each other excellently. Vinnie Hornsby supports the chunky riffs well with thundering Bass lines and shines more on slower songs where him and Morgan can really lay down some excellent rhythm sections. Morgan Rose is personally my standout musician, his work in Sevendust and Eye Empire first two records is incredible. He can lay down ridiculous double bass, but also easily switches to complicated drum patterns to fit slower songs.

Lajon sounds great here as well. For a man doing this for over 20 years, his voice still sounds great. He can deliver his gruff vocals with no trouble or his deep growls with intensity. His lyrics are filled with passion and he sings it like he means it. While being very recognizable, for a singer to continue to deliver believable passion is great to hear this far into their career. I've seen several interviews with him recently and he seems very excited and into this album. All I See Is War is definitely an album of our time, with our countries climate feeling like the San Andrea's fault line and the world recently having so much turmoil, the album and lyrics really speak to this, while also being deeply personal.

I'd also like to say that the production is fantastic on this album. Hard Rock and Metal really hit a low point in production between 2009 and 2011, but seems to have made a slow recovery to bands have a great sound stage. While many people listen to their music through phone speakers, low quality streams and cheap headphones, I personally invest a bit in my sound. Be it speakers for my computer, sound system for tv or getting decent earbuds, I am always trying to get the best sound out of what I have. So for bands and producers investing a bit more into sound quality is great to me. Elvis Baskette, who has worked with some of my favorite bands(Alter Bridge((#1)), Projected, Story of the Year and even Slash on World on Fire) has really become a great producer for these heavy bands. The physical album has has a cool cardboard slip over it that makes the bars over the image, which was a nice addition to the packaging.

All I See Is War is not only a fantastic Sevendust album, it is a fantastic album period. This band really put out a great cohesive effort, delivering nostalgia of their Nu Metal days, while also keeping the songs diverse and interesting. From a personal stand point, that heavy yet melodic sound is always a draw to me. I grew up during the rise of Nu Metal and while there were plenty of bandwagon bands that were just jumping on the hype train, the bands that continued and stuck together just have it to me. Lajon may sing 'I'm Not Original anymore' tinged with self realization and melancholy, Sevendust are absolutely recognizable and at this point Iconic.

If you are a fan of Sevendust, All I See Is War is a must have. If you are a fan of hard rock and metal, it is a must have. All I See Is War is fantastic!
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on May 11, 2018
Sevendust is on their twelfth studio album. For many, that could be hard believe considering the band has been going strong since the late 90's and have never even attempted to fall off the face of the Earth, while some people reading that statement who only know of Sevendust's earlier material and nothing else will wonder where the heck they've been in the past multitude of years they have lacked focus on this band. But the truth is that this band is no stranger to consistency and nonstop working. That is a claim anybody can back up and not feel like they're doing any sort of disservice. Sevendust has consistently toured, created music, and overall has seemingly avoided the hardships that many bands of the nu-metal days have experienced. This is even though some albums from this band have been more of the same ("Next", "Alpha"), while others have experimented with success or have been all-around great discs that deserve attention ("Animosity", "Cold Day Memory"). Now in 2018, "All I See Is War" enters the fold as their first album produced for their new record label in Rise Records. This is also their first album produced by Michael "Elvis" Baskette, whom is responsible for the overall sound of this album, and it is reported that Sevendust chose him in order to "reboot" the band's style because of his close inspection of every detail of his produced material. All of this is definitely respectable as bands can often release samey or stale discs that don't leave as much impact as time goes on. Sevendust have promising ambitions for the overall outcome of this project, but what needs to be seen is how this affects the twelve chosen tracks for "All I See Is War". 

A grand total of three promoted singles were used to tease the latest effort from Sevendust. The first one of those, "Dirty" is the album's opener and really lets you in on what styles and ideas this disc will tackle as a whole. "Dirty" is a bit less aggressive than the other leadoff singles Sevendust has done. Granted, this does have some of the key aggression that Sevendust has perfected with several albums and even has drummer Morgan Rose scream the album title in the background a few times always complimenting the powerful vocals of frontman Lajon Witherspoon well, but there's really a sense that they're boosting up the melody instead of going all out on the angry and headbanging song structures. It also has the hooks that longtime Sevendust fans are looking for in addition to a fantastic guitar solo. The melodic nature of the album continues with the surprisingly soft "Not Original" which sounds a bit different in this band's favor, even compared to other Sevendust ballad styled songs. This really makes it one of this album's best tracks and one of the most unique songs that Sevendust has made in a long time. The other pre-released song, "Medicated", is typically what people would want to hear from this band with an excellent chorus that features good vocalwork and competent riffage. There's definitely effort put into these songs, and what is relieving to hear is that the majority of this album has some effort placed into it as well. 

The overall tone for this album is surprisingly different for a Sevendust album. Don't get me wrong, there are still some tropes to expect from Sevendust and songs that will easily remind fans of previous works such as the aforementioned "Medicated" as well as "Risen" and "Descend". But many of these tracks, while still drenched in the identity of Sevendust, are proof that this band is not just  trying to release the same album with the sole difference being the lyrics are different. Sonically, these tracks just deliver a lot more of the diverse side, even more so than their already great previous disc "Kill The Flaw". Maybe it's the need for a more melodic backdrop or it's because of the meticulous production and the band's statement about renewal, but some of these dynamics are ones that they have only seldomly played with. The second half of this album features more of these with the piano that is present throughout a good majority of album highlight "Moments" and the switch between soft verses and heavy choruses in "Life Deceives You". Even on songs such as "God Bites His Tongue", "Sickness", and "Unforgiven", these wouldn't exactly fit on other Sevendust albums, but that's a very complimentary statement to make. Almost everything about this album has a great amount of appeal to it, especially tracks such as "Sickness", "Moments", and the singles "Dirty" and "Not Original". There really isn't much to complain about here. 

For the entirety of "All I See Is War", we are presented with only a couple tracks that are below the standard of this album in the form of "Cheers" and the somewhat weak and expected album closer "The Truth", but even these fit well within and there really is not as much harm done with these tracks. It's very difficult to officially set in stone where this ranks among the rather long list of discs that Sevendust has made considering I officially got into them through "Cold Day Memory" and albums like "Home", "Animosity", and "Seasons" are all albums I consistently come back to whenever I'm in the mood to hear Sevendust. One thing I'm happy to say is that this truly is one of their best albums, although not their absolute best. This could potentially open the door for more creative ideas for the band and it will definitely be interesting to see where this band goes on future releases. It's definitely one of the most unique discs Sevendust has crafted, and it's certain that longtime fans will feel somewhat similarly as they listen to this material. Even as most of the members are pushing fifty years old, it doesn't seem like their musical abilities and knack for good songwriting and music writing is aging with them which is hard to really accomplish. It's safe to say that if you approach this album and pop it in, all you'll see is yet another positive experience.

Rating: 90/100
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on May 13, 2018
This has to be the only successful band breakup and reunion in recent memory. When Clint Lowery left the band, not only did we keep getting Sevendust with John leading the guitars, but we also got Dark New Day with Clint leading the guitars.

While Sevendust without Clint was entirely different from what we were used to, it threw Lajon into the forefront, suddenly the guitar riffs weren't the focus of the albums. This is where Lajon really started to shine. In the meantime we had Clint's new band Dark New Day, which really showcased Clint's funky riffs. Then the band came back together, and released new albums which combined the best of Lajon and Clint. Now that a few albums have been dropped since, this new album really nails the best of both worlds.

Don't get me wrong, I really liked the last few albums, with Time Travelers really standing out, but I always felt since the reunion that they should stop producing their own music, despite the actual performances being amazing. Well my dream has come true, they are back together AND have a producer, and this album rocks! Don't get me wrong, I'm sure they are all capable producers, but lawyers never represent themselves in court, and the band should keep letting producers represent them on records. Definitely a slam dunk!
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on May 14, 2018
I've been a fan of this glorious band since 1998. During that time I've enjoyed everything they've put out, in various degrees. My favorite album by them is definitely Home, but Kill The Flaw is right up there. This new one has some hype coming in on it, and for good reason! It's incredible.

If you like it heavy? they got you. Melodic? Check. Inspired? Double check. Intricate, yet groovy riffs? Triple check. This album has it all. Everything you could ever want from them. And singer LJ has never sounded better!!! Some of the best melodies I've heard from them. You need this, get it now.
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on May 13, 2018
In my opinion this is the best Sevendust record ever released. I feel like I have grown up with Sevendust over the years and you can hear the change in their musical style. This record is well thought out and meaningful. Thanks to 7D for producing such wonderful music over the years! You owe it to yourself to buy this and buy it now!!
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on May 12, 2018
Sevendust are back with another killer album. If you're expecting a major change in sound, forget it. They've stuck to their guns, and should be commended for that. The iconic heavy/melodic sound of Animosity continues to be what the band delivers. There's some strong Animosity vibes on this, I'm loving it. The guitars are heavy, the drums sound great, and Lajon still holds his own. Right off the bat, I think this a stronger album than Kill The Flaw, which I love. This seems like a tighter balance of their sound to me, it's beefier and heavier also I think. The album will likely grow with time, and while it does have the same kind of sound throughout there is clear subtleties with each track that make the album as a whole work.
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on May 13, 2018
This album is a culmination of Sevendust's career combining the the ferociousness and epic wall of sound we have come to know from a great band. If you have never listened to Sevendust, do yourself a favor and purchase at least one song from this album and you'll fall in love immediately. Vocals, Riffs, Drums, Bass, and ear candy (keyboards etc) are at their finest.
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on May 11, 2018
What's to say? Just pure brilliance from a band that I have listened to since I was a teenager. Sevendust fans will not be disappointed. A great mix of mellow and metal.
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on May 12, 2018
This album rocks! The lyrics are brilliant he really shines lyrically and vocally on this album and the rest of the band sound amazing as well. My favorite songs are Risen, Medicate, Dirty, Not Original, God Bites His Tongue and Descend. The whole album is great and you'll definitely keep it on repeat.
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on May 13, 2018
In a world of inconsistency, Sevendust stands like a rock! Is it recency bias or is this one of their best? Well, it's too soon to tell but what I will say is that this album doesn't disappoint. It comes as a great relief that 7D is still making music with conviction and soul.
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