Sunday 25 September 2022

Seven Nines And Tens - Over Opiated In A Forest Of Whispering Speakers

Labels: Willowtip Records

Formats: CD/Digital

Release Date: 07 Jan 2022


1. Popular Delusions

2. Throwing Rocks At Mediocrity

3. Midnight Marauders

4. Let's Enjoy The Aimless Days While We Can

5. Edutainment

6. Fight For Your Right To Partial Relevance

7. Sunshine

In January, Canadian progressive/post-metal band Seven Nines And Tens released their latest (and third full-length) Over Opiated In A Forest Of Whispering Speakers via forward-thinking label Willowtip Records, whom they have been signed to since 2020. This is my first time hearing the band; however, after reading that they've shared the stage with the likes of Minus The Bear, Astronoid and Nothing (amongst many others) and having been a band since 2008, I'm looking forward to this greatly.

The discovery of new bands is a constant journey of enjoyment. Granted, Seven Nines And Tens aren’t new in the literal sense, there will be people who are only just discovering them (like me). Album opener ‘Popular Delusions’ is filled with fuzz-laden instrumentation and glorious vocal harmonies, as well progressive blues-like flourishes and tasteful percussion. There are so many familiar elements to the trio’s sound, yet everything feels fresh and new at the same time. Hearing the initial bars of ‘Throwing Rocks At Mediocrity’  reminds me of the band American Football, at least before the music gets heavier that is! Even when it does get heavier though, it’s not totally dissonant and the soothing vocals sit nicely amongst the instrumentation and don’t get overpowered by it.

‘Midnight Marauders’ is a slower-paced song with shoegaze at it’s core. As such, it’s really listenable. There’s a sense that this album could elevate Seven Nines And Tens beyond the metal underground (so to speak). They certainly deserve to heard by a much greater audience; for example, they would sit comfortably alongside Muse and Pink Floyd (which is apt, because the cover for this album was created by Ahmed Emad Eldin, who also created the cover for Pink Floyd’s Endless River in 2016). 

They grow in a more experimental direction on ‘Let’s Enjoy The Aimless Days While We Can’ with the use of different time-signatures, stop/start passages and brilliantly layered instrumentation. It flies by in no time all in spite of it’s five minute+ length. One thing I haven’t mentioned enough of yet is how good the bass guitar is on the album. You can hear it more clearly on ‘Edutainment’, where it’s bluesy/jazz-like tones really add warmth to an already warm and dramatic song.

That rhythm when the first verse of ‘Fight For Your Right To Partial Relevance’ kicks in is unexpected, given how heavy the intro is. It carries on in much the same vein with the up-beat verses being punctuated by much heavier passages and off-kilter transitions too. Because of this, it’s very much the heaviest song on Over Opiated…. Closing song ‘Sunshine’ is poignant and with a hip-hop like percussive performance as well. It’s the most bizarre song on the album with all kinds of instrumental effects, time-signatures and styles present. That’s what Seven Nines And Tens are so hard to classify.

Overall, this album blew me away. I didn’t know what to expect but it’s been a fantastic listen throughout, As I mentioned above, Seven Nines And Tens deserve greater recognition for their music and here’s hoping more people catch on in the near future. Truly excellent. 

You can stream Over Opiated... and purchase it on all formats below:-

Seven Nines And Tens -

Willowtip Records -

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