TO-MERA       Delusions
Candlelight Records (release: February 18th, 2008)

The faults we could find on debut Transcendental have been corrected. Thus, everything flows very nicely on the whole, although the songs are even more complex. So, as the music's still very technical, if you don't like jazzy or wild progressive parts such as on Asylum, you should fall back on smooth but also powerful Julie Kiss' voice, which is perfect in this genre.Laurent

EXCITER       Thrash Speed Burn
Massacre Records (release: February 22nd, 2008)

Eight years after their last studio effort Blood Of Tyrants (you have to put 2004's re-recorded compilation New Testament aside), guitar player John Ricci, sole survivor of the original line-up, has certainly told his EXCITER's mates: "OK, guys ! Let's remove the dust from our amplifiers and mixing console and here we go !". Unfortunately, they didn't take advantage of this break to listen to up-to-date stuff because one can't say their music has evolved a lot, as the only change is about new vocalist Kenny Winter. Following the example of such bands like AC/DC, they keep playing the same music year after year for their loyal fan base (with these typical repetitive choruses and themes) but they do it well. And they don't give a damn about what other people may think ! So, now's the time to exhume the words "Speed Metal" even if you can find a couple of heavier tracks on this brand new record (Crucifixion and Evil Omen).
On the other hand, you should consider Thrash Speed Burn as a collection of eighties' anthems, made by a band with a 25 years' career. As long as they're honest… But I think next time they'd better record in Abyss Studios, Sweden for instance, so as to get a much more killer sound and thus convince the whole Metal world.
One will say it's good to go back to the roots sometimes, so you can start to bang your head now !...Laurent

WORK OF ART       Artwork
Frontiers Records (release: February 22nd, 2008)

If you’re a fan of powerful Swedish Metal, this album is the exact opposite ! It rather leads to A.O.R., especially to TOTO. This record is so excellent that you should have it in your collection and just for the song Camelia.Jean-Luc