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Rhythm & Views

Sevendust

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Without giving fans much time to digest last year's Alpha, Atlanta-based rockers Sevendust are back at it again with Chapter VII: Hope and Sorrow. Just like Alpha, Sevendust's new effort is a throwback to their earlier work: heavy, angry and melodic.

Older fans of Sevendust will view Chapter VII as a continuation of the group's sophomore release, 1999's Home. Chapter VII varies its musical direction, showing a more relaxed, mature and evolved band. For instance, the album's opener, "Inside," is loud and in your face, like a typical Sevendust song, whereas melancholy tracks like "Hope" and "Prodigal Son" offer piano and string sections.

For the first time in nearly a decade, Sevendust has reached out and collaborated with other artists on Chapter VII. Longtime fan of the band and former American Idol contestant Chris Daughtry lends his voice to the track "The Past," and former Creed and current Alter Bridge guitarist Mark Tremonti guests on "Hope," while Alter Bridge vocalist Myles Kennedy appears on "Sorrow."

Chapter VII is not only Sevendust's most diverse record musically; it is also all over the place lyrically. "Prodigal Son" is based on the New Testament parable of a man who loses his way and returns home to make amends. "Inside" is about learning from mistakes, while "Scapegoat" deals with guilt by association.

Open-minded listeners will see Chapter VII for what it is--a risky career move that will pay off by helping prolong Sevendust's life in the music industry.

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