Alternative metal stalwarts Sevendust tried their hand at an acoustic album ten years ago with Southside Double-Wide: Acoustic Live. The collection of live recordings showcased the musicality beneath Sevendust's rage. The band re-explores that softer side in their latest studio album, the acoustic Time-Travelers & Bonfires.
By Nathan Leigh, AFROPUNK Contributor
Like Southside Double-Wide, Time-Travelers & Bonfires features a smattering of Sevendust classics re-imagined on acoustic guitar, but mixed in are a collection of 6 new songs.
While the back half features the novelty of Sevendust's hardest songs softened and slowed down, the first half showcases the band's versatility and evolution as songwriters. The softer mix gives singer Lajon Witherspoon room to flex, and he rewards it by giving his most nuanced and emotional performance to date. “The Wish” adds piano and strings into the mix for something truly and surprisingly beautiful.
The reworked classics that make up Time-Travelers & Bonfires' second half are staples of the band's live set (they even included “Trust” and “Black” on Southside Double-Wide). The newfound dynamic range adds some depth and variation to songs that continue to live on modern rock radio. While Sevendust's songs work surprisingly well on acoustic guitar, the occasional reliance on distorted electric guitar for solos can be jarring. But even self-imposed rules are meant to be broken, I guess. The album closes out with “Black,” Sevendust's first single, and one of their best-loved songs. Witherspoon's vocal puts the focus squarely on the lyrics, giving new life to a song that remains as timely as ever despite decades of radio play.
Time-Travelers & Bonfires is available here.
Stream the full album here.