Seventh Sin
Stranger Among Gods
Style: Heavy Metal/Hard Rock
Release date: 2010
Playing time: 30:10

Unbeknownst to me, there's a burgeoning heavy metal scene in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The area has even taken on its own musical moniker - NWOWHM (Next Wave Of Winnipeg Heavy Metal) - sharing the scene with the already established Winnipeg Extreme Metal and a common fondness for NWOBHM (New Wave Of British Heavy Metal).

Six-piece heavy metal/hard rockers, Seventh Sin, has made a name for themselves and created quite a buzz around the Heart of the Continent in the past few years. Their second self-released EP, Stranger Among Gods, is a well-produced, well-packaged and well-received classic-sounding opus. The band combine '70s hard rock with NWOBHM and '80s metal, while still sounding fresh and original. Their influences run deep with Iron Maiden, Deep Purple and Judas Priest.

The raspy and powerful vocals of Aarom Hemmersbach, the guitar mastery of Jarrett Wiebe and Greg Keller (since replaced by Shane Baron), the thunderous bass of Brad Kreitz, the solid time-keeping of drummer Dave Klakowich and the innovative keyboard stylings of Dan Klakowich are included in the band's strengths.

Charging out of the gate with rumbling, souped-up hot rod noises, CD opener "The Giant" vibrates from your speakers in a Deep Purple meets White Wizzard way. The rough riffs and vibrant vocals, tinged with Hammond organ accents, brings out the retro influences of the band. Hemmersbach's raspy and commanding vocals, coupled with Klakowich's tight drumming and Wiebe and Keller's dual twin guitar leads add to a great start to Stranger Among Gods.

The next number, "They Kill Animals," sees the pace slow down a bit, which adds a certain dynamic and mood to the multi-layered song. "The Raven," with its epic and majestic vibe, weaves the main guitar riff together with orchestral elements and piano interludes quite effectively.

Seventh Sin's songwriting and storytelling skills is what great songs are made of. All six tracks on the Stranger Among Gods are crafted like a well-written novel - with a proper beginning, middle and end. Each song builds up nicely until its climactic end. Their song structures are made up of a main underlying riff which drives the song along and ties the other elements together nicely.

Seventh Sin has all the makings to take their music to the next level. Question is, will a major label take their chances on a relatively unknown band outside its native continent? Stranger Among Gods is a mature and strong release that puts a lot of already "established" bands to shame. Someone sign these guys so they can record a proper full length album and get decent promotion and distribution.


01. The Giant
02. The Kill Animals
03. The Raven
04. Dragonhouse
05. Silent Blue

Label: Independent
Reviewed by: Kelley Simms
Date: 10 January, 2011