Seven Storey Mountain – Based on a True Story

Seven Storey Mountain
Based on a True Story

Seven Storey Mountain probably listened to a lot of Fugazi as they started playing music. This band fuses the energy and post-punk power of Fugazi with some of the hardcore/post-hardcore drive of Hot Water Music for some amazing, straight-forward power-rock songs. I’ve been eagerly anticipating this new album since Leper Ethics, the band’s last full length on Art Monk Construction, was released several years ago.
This trio have seven new powerful songs that sound both influenced by everything but just like nothing. The rhythm is driving in an almost punkish manner, but the driving, powerful guitars lean more toward the hardcore and even metal side of things. Singer/guitarist Lance Lammers’ vocals are straining his voice with the power and emotion behind them but still sound good. Basically, it’s highly potent, power-infused energetic rock.
“So Soon” kicks things off with some of the most driving, energy-fueled guitar I’ve heard in a long time. The vocals kick in, furious and fast, and the rhythm keeps things moving along so you’ll be somewhere between bobbing your head and head-banging (if people still do that). The multiple vocals on the chorus lend it weight and power. “Reality Time” is a bit more rhythmic, especially in the chorus that is almost catchy. Behind a wall of fuzzed-out guitars and power drumming, you get a catchy and powerful song. “Waste of Time” is one of the strongest tracks, more bass-heavy and kicking off with some excellent guitar riffs, and you’ll be singing the lyrics along with Lammers after one listen. “Where Were You” is one of the more emotional songs, slowing things down for a sort of anti-ballad, getting very deep and low. Lammers’ voice strains and reaches for more emphasis as he sings, “and I hate to play this game but at least I know you’ll win no matter what I do.” “Politician” has a more punk feel to it without actually quite being punk, and it also has a great line: “I’m just a politician. I’ve got no time for sick and poor. I’ve got a busy schedule. I’m just a money raising whore.” The guitars on “Known to Lie” are just amazing, driving and frenzied without losing control, but “Unrest” slows things down, sounding more introspective and personal, at times quieting down to nothing but Lammers’ soft murmur and guitar, but it picks up with a feeling and drive that can’t even contain Lammers’ voice.
Seven Storey Mountain haven’t changed too much since their last album, I’m happy to hear. These songs are still combining the best of hardcore power and punk energy, tossing in steady, powerful drumming, driving guitar and heavy bass for some of the best power-rock songs since Fugazi practically originated the genre. The artwork for this album, all sepia-toned and somewhat sad, is a great touch.