• 7.5/10
    SEVENTH WONDER - Mercy Falls - 7.5/10


Lion Music
Release date: September 12, 2008

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

Sweden’s premiere Progressive Metal quintet returns with their third release on the Lion Music label. After releasing a very impressive sophomore release over two years ago in Waiting In The Wings it turned out to be a long wait for fans. With such high expectations it would be extremely difficult for Seventh Wonder fans not to drool over speculating on picking up this new release. The question is whether or not the two year lapse in new material has helped make this new release, entitled Mercy Falls, a strong successor to the returning quintet’s last outing.

To start with, Seventh Wonder has given in on the temptation to create a concept album, as Mercy Falls is just that. The name of the album itself brings to mind images of the 1990 David Lynch TV series Twin Peaks. Mercy Falls is based on the fate of a small town, a family tragedy and the anomaly we often refer to as “human nature”.

The album starts out quite stereotypically with haunting keyboards accompanied by voice and sound clips that help “paint the picture” before the opening track, “A New Beginning”, breaks into a moderate and moody, orchestrated instrumental piece… not exactly a track full of the staccato runs that the band so masterfully performed on their last release. More voice clips before “There And Back” forcefully takes over the soundstage… moody and orchestrated once again but delivered powerfully.

It’s not until the third track “Welcome To Mercy Falls” that we hear vocalist Tommy Karevik and some of the staccato patterns a Seventh Wonder fan would expect. The track overall should meet fan’s expectations on all levels complete with a great vocal performance and a strong chorus complete with plenty of multi-tracked backing vocal support (perhaps the influence of Engineer Daniel Flores of Mind’s Eye?).

Whether it’s the story driven approach required by a concept album or just the band being diverse, with attention to more color, there are some weaker spots on this release. The first being the seven minute fourth track “Unbreakable”, with a few tempo changes, which seems to go on longer than necessary… hence the need for some patience. Follow this up with the ballad “Tears For A Father” and not even the mastering by the returning Tommy Hansen can overcome the sluggish pace. It’s not until the eleventh track on “Hide And Seek” followed by “Destiny Calls” that the band return truer to form.

Bottom line, this is not as masterful or jaw-dropping of a powerhouse as the band’s last outing. It does require some patience in listening, due to the slow parts as a result of its story telling nature, as some tracks seem not to be as captivating as “Welcome To Mercy Falls” and the latter half of the disc. Nevertheless, any music theory geek should once again enjoy this release, as it should provide them endless hours of enjoyment and countless smiles. For any Seventh Wonder fans who enjoyed the first two releases they should find plenty to enjoy here as it garners a “recommended purchase” stamp of approval… it just might end up seeing less iPod time then Waiting In The Wings though.


Tommy Karevik – Vocals
Johan Liefvendahl – Guitar
Andreas Blomqvist – Bass
Andreas Söderin – Keyboards
Johnny Sandin – Drums


  • Scott Jeslis

    Scott is one of the partners at Metal Express Radio. He handles a lot of Metal Express Radio's public relations, screening of new music and radio scheduling. On occasion, he also does reviews and interviews. He has been a proud member of the Metal Express Radio crew since 2004.

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