Book of Reflections - Relentless Fighter 2012

Book of Reflections is a solo project by Lars Eric Mattson. If you don't know this guy who happen to be a near god guitarist, you should read this review carefully, lol. Lars was entering the shred scene back in the 80s Shrapnel year, as one of Mike Varney's axemen. Released several shred solo albums (the last full instrumental was Earthbound, 2005),  this Book of Reflections project is focus on vocal neo classical metal, but actually, it is more a one third singing and the rest are soloing, at least found in this album.

No epic intro available for the opening, instead the shred just can't wait and come in in 0.0842s. Although it's cool, but I think at least a 0.5s intro note will make it more polished, at least from editing point of view. All songs are too cool, the album just feel created to blow your head away, with solo and solos. Two singers are in action but seems a supporting cast only because after minutes of musical opera, the voice different is almost unrecognizable. Most of song are actually very familiar power metal formula, but most of the time you just can't wait for the lyric to pass and again, more like a guitar music with vocal as the interlude. Highlight blitz guitar are in Until the Day and Rise Up! In fact again, they almost share the same neo classical licks here and there. And for sake of God, there exist Gate of Oblivion, a (surprise) full instrumental song.

This is a luke warm water heavy/power metal album if you didn't like too many shredding time, but is there such metal fans who didn't enjoy extensive solos here? The keyboard works, also by Lars, get the same intensity as the guitar. The album is heavy in progressive feel and the singer serves mostly as the other half of attraction. Sound mixing wise, I feel the album tunes is a bit out of ordinary, with too machine sound overall. Nevertheless, a very very enjoyable time for any guitar shred lover.

Metal Harem class: ******* 7 stars out of 10

Book of Reflections - Relentless Fighter 2012

1. Until the Day 04:44
2. Dance With the Devil 05:08
3. Angel Shed a Tear 04:13
4. Bleeding Dry 05:32
5. Rise Up ! 04:41
6. Crashing Through 04:11
7. Somewhere Else to Be 05:28
8. Gates to Oblivion 06:27   instrumental
9. Keep Us Afloat 04:35
10. Without My Angel 04:45

Fantasy art style album cover for Book of Reflections

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