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Seventh Harmonic - A Promise of Sacrifice

A Promise of Sacrifice the second full length CD from UK all female neo-classical outfit Seventh Harmonic is out now. The band comprise Caroline Jago (bass guitar and programming), Eilish McCracken violin, and Kate Arnold vocals and dulcimer. A Promise of Sacrifice is the first CD with Kate as lead vocalist.

The CD follows the high romantic sensibility of their earlier work. The bulk of their music is a finely developed fusion of atmospheric ethereal pop with a classical inspiration, reminiscent of the 4AD label during their heyday. Kate Arnold's vocals are slightly folk inspired and are particularly successful on 'De Terra Exoritur', 'Butterfly Kiss' and live favourites 'Inside the Circle' and 'Chains'. Yet Seventh Harmonic are developing new themes quite successfully. Two tracks feature collaboration with Spyros Gisafakis and Evi Stergiou from Athens based group Daemonia Nymphe, who are trying to recreate the sound of Greek Antiquity. The two pieces in question; 'Immortal Selene' and 'To the Mother of Gods' use lyrics taken from Homer. Original vocalist Fionna returns on 'Parisina', based on a Byron poem, to stunning effect. Paul Nemmeth, from Cries of Tammuz takes a chant-like lead vocal built round an intricate Eastern rhythm for 'Pass Within' which also works extremely well.

Overall A Promise of Sacrifice is a successful and inspiring release. The group's creative sophistication remains intact, both in producing melodic gothic pop and in pursuing less obvious paths. For more information go to (review by Mike Shankland)