7 by Scarlet Horizon

Scarlet Horizon are a visual kei-inspired band from Bejing, China. They released their first single “Unstoppable” back in 2016 and have been making music since with a mini-album, digital single and since last year, a full album consisting of eight powerful tracks which has been given the name “7”.
For this album there’s also an unique collaboration with Cazqui, who most people will recognize as one of the former guitarists of NOCTURNAL BLOODLUST, now the man behind 猫曼珠-nekomanju- and Cazqui’s Brutal Orchestra, for the song “AFTER PARTY”.
All in all, “7” sounds like it’s going to be an album that goes into the heavy metal section already, but let’s have a more detailed look!


Tracklist (CD):

EPISODE 00 – INTRO
EPISODE 01 – CASH
EPISODE 02 – AFTER PARTY (FEAT.CAZQUI)
EPISODE 03 – LAZY NIGHT
EPISODE 04 – EAT ME
EPISODE 05 – SEED
EPISODE 06 – DANCING ON THE ROOF
EPISODE 07 – TO START OVER AGAIN AND RESET


EPISODE 00 – INTRO

Rather than a powerful intro like you hear quite often these days, the intro to this album starts off as a door opening and closing and the tuning of a guitar before rolling seamlessly into the next track.

EPISODE 01 – CASH
CASH immediately starts off powerful, setting the mood for what you can expect with the rest of the album. Despite being heavy -especially on the vocal part-, this is a very catchy song sporting a wish I’m sure pretty much everyone has: the desire for cash. (Though if we all actually acquired this, money would have no value anymore…)
While the primary style of vocals remains the deep, growling, screaming style, the second vocals actually bring in a very mellow style that is a direct contrast, giving this little bit of extra power to the song.

EPISODE 02 – AFTER PARTY (FEAT.CAZQUI)
AFTER PARTY probably is the song where everyone came for, considering the name behind the “featured” indicator. While I can’t deny that this is definitely one of the songs that stand out the most on this release, it’s also unique in it’s setup with a very cheerful overlay while maintaining the heavy setting the rest of the album has. Overall AFTER PARTY is a party with a very typical heavy metal sound layered through it that should please fans of the genre regardless. Again, the vocal style are primarily the growling kind, but the second vocals are mixed in in such a way that they compliment each other. And once you come across the addition from Cazqui… You’ll definitely see why this song is so popular.

EPISODE 03 – LAZY NIGHT
LAZY NIGHT opens with a sentence I can personally relate to on a semi-regular basis, because sometimes all you want is to just lie on the couch and watch TV, right? While the song starts off in a much slower tempo than the previous songs, it picks up the pace quickly enough, so don’t expect to get lazy here. Despite the calm intro it’s actually one of the most aggressive songs on the album in terms of speed, with no melodic vocals being thrown into the mix this time, taking the darker turn of the genre.

EPISODE 04 – EAT ME
While the previous track was already aggressive, EAT ME is a whole different form of aggressive. The tempo is turned down only slightly, and the melodic vocals make a return for one verse in this song as well, a verse that changes the entire song briefly before the slow aggression makes it’s return. EAT ME manages to keep the song interesting despite it’s rather short lyrics, which are equally as aggressive as the instrumentals are, due to the comparison to being a lamb ready to be eaten.

EPISODE 05 – SEED
Starting as a high-paced song the vibe of the album is immediately changed by SEED, especially when the scream vocals join in. The scream vocals mix perfectly with the melodic vocals, while remaining the high speed of the song until the bridge, where the song temporarily takes a breather to give the guitars a moment to shine with the screamo vocals in the background. SEED is a chaotic song, but it shows the capabilities of the band more than anything. A perfect choice for the music video. So it shouldn’t be a surprise that the music video for this album in fact is, this song.
While being the very first official music video for the band it’s a high production video with a story of a cult, filmed in the woods and some rural buildings used by said cult. A very welcome addition to the digital career of the band, because it allows people who can’t experience the band during their live shows to get a good idea of what they can expect.

EPISODE 06 – DANCING ON THE ROOF
Starting with a mildly creepy vibe that’s definitely not unfamiliar to fans of the metal genre, DANCING ON THE ROOF builds up to a much more sinister sound, pulling the chaos caused from the previous song down to something fitting for a movie or video game soundtrack. The melodic vocals are an absolute mirror of the screamo vocals, creating a very unique vibe before the scream vocals take over as the devil inside of you, urging the one on the roof to not hesitate, because they will be waiting on the ground.

EPISODE 07 – TO START OVER AGAIN AND RESET
Mixing in an entirely new element, TO START OVER AGAIN AND RESET shows a completely different side of the band, which isn’t just capable of heavy metal and screamo, but very much djent and hip-hop influences too. But only for a brief moment, because it’s still a metal band we’re talking about here. In a song that’s true to it’s title, the lyrics very much encourage you to reconsider and how your demons are keeping a hold on you and how you’ve sold your soul to evil. Is there any chance of starting over and resetting? While the main part of the song is high paced and aggressive, the end is a lot calmer and more djent-like, creating a pleasant outro for a powerful album.


Conclusion:

Overall “7” is an album that knocks the door down whenever you play it. The techniques used throughout are absolutely amazing if you’re a fan of the genre, and the melodic vocals mix perfectly with the screamo ones for a completely unique sound in the metal scene. If you have not checked out this band yet I would absolutely recommend doing so, because you won’t be disappointed. There are a few minor “problems” with the album, mostly in the pronunciation department. Regardless, these can be dismissed or even ignored entirely because the native language of the band isn’t English: it’s Chinese. The choice for the lyrics being fully in English was an amazing one to reach out to more people, and it definitely combined two worlds I really love into one single CD.

 
Final score: 80/100

 

Release information:
Artist:
Scarlet Horizon
Release:
7 (album)
Release date:
October 27, 2019
ISRC number:
3616401686612

 Scarlet Horizon – SEED (MV):

One Reply to “7 by Scarlet Horizon”

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