Mattsson - Power Games

Year of Release: 2003
Label: Lion Music
Catalog Number: n/a
Format: CD
Total Time: 57:10:00

After hearing previous efforts by an amazing guitar player by the name of Lars Eric Mattsson, I was all excited to hear his new release [as simply Mattsson]. I love the way this guy plays, he rocks. With that kind of anticipation, I set myself up for a big disappointment. Power Games fell short of my expectations, in a big way. The problem is that he uses a vocalist for seven out of the eight tracks. Moreover, to add insult to injury the singer is another Geoff Tate clone. I think Tate is great, I am just not crazy about hearing people that sound like they are imitating another singer. Whether it is intentional or not, it does bug me sometimes, but it also depends on the music how I react. With all due respect, Lance King does have a good voice; it just did not work for me on this album.

It's ironic, the review I did previous to this made me feel good about the fact that the group reminded me of Tate and his mates, this time it just pissed me off and irritated me. The reason I feel this way is that Mattsson is a great guitarist that does not need a vocalist to build around his music. His music is not meant for the compliment of a vocalist because it hinders the development of what lies within his heart, guitar instrumentals. A process that was once purely musical becomes a clouded vision instead of a clear purpose. He is at his best when left to his own devices and just his guitar. The results fashioned by the formula used for this album are boring and run-of-the-mill sameness. It could have easily been so much more.

I give you a proof of the fact that instrumentals are Mattsson's strong suit with the incredible track #7 titled ?Beyond The Horizon-Guitar Concerto No 1,? which clocks in at 17:11. That is like half an album! This song is an incredible piece of guitar virtuosity. It makes the CD worth the price of admission. I am still angered though; the entire album could have been like this, Lars! Come on, lose the vocalist and let us hear that guitar!

Open The Gate (7:34) / Victim Of Freedom (3:59) / Blind Faith (5:21) / Chained To My Pain (4:02) / Bridge To The Past (8:22) / Safely Through The Fight (6:04) / Beyond The Horizon (Guitar Concerto No 1 (17:11) / Lead Me On My Way (5:17)

Lars Eric Mattsson - guitars and keyboards
Lance King - lead and background vocals
Eddie Sledgehammer - drums

Another Dimension (2000)
Power Games (2003)

Genre: Melodic Rock-AOR

Origin FI

Added: February 7th 2003
Reviewer: Keith "Muzikman" Hannaleck
Artist website:
Hits: 1076
Language: english


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