Them is one of the most unusual and unique acts in metal today, mixing Halloween themes with thrash metal. Their debut, Sweat Hollow (2016), was underwhelming and failed at translating their inspirations into their sound. Things are changing this year with the release of Manor Of The Se7en Gables where everything sounds much more ambitious.
Manor Of The Se7en Gables kicks off with an intro track titled “Residuum,” which is a half skit, half instrumental that complements the theme of this record very well. Next is “Circuitous” which starts off with an ear-melting scream from lead vocalist KK Fossor and has perfect speed and is extremely consistent with the Halloween theme. The tune is absolutely brutal, especially given the killer drumming. “Witchfinder” has a more epic feeling, and the vocals bring so much to this track, unlike the previous tracks which sounds are a bit more based in the instruments. There is one problem, and that is how overwhelmingthe theme this band is using becomes. Every track has a Halloween theme, and if Them are wanting to stay relevant, they are really going to need to be a bit more creative. “Ravna” is a completely different track in tone and mood, it’s more mysterious and has a much slower tempo. “The Secret Stairs,” kicks off with great guitar playing by Markus Johansson, leads into a basic but killer thrash attack.
All of these observations lead into one thing – Them‘s Manor Of The Se7en Gables is a hard-hitting, albeit cheesy record that will have you wanting more. So how good is Manor of the Se7en Gables? It’s a decent four out of five and one of the better records of this year.
Manor of the Se7en Gables is out October 26 on SPV/Steamhammer. Buy it here!