Lars Eric Mattsson
Lars Eric Mattsson
The year after Vision recorded a follow up album, which were never released due to contractual problems and the band eventually split up. Around 1994 when Lars was found playing in cover bands doing blues classics and Hendrix covers Lars got in contact with another Swedish singer Björn Lodin, who had made 4 albums with his own band Baltimoore. As guitarist Nikolo Kotzev left Baltimore Björn joined forces with Lars And recorded 1995’s album 'Astral Groove', which was blues based and quite different from Lars previous releases. More or less Astral Groove came out of jamming ideas but the band split up very soon. In 1996 Lars wanted to give 'Vision' a second chance and recorded the album 'Till the End of Time' which was his most laid back melodic- almost AOR - release ever.
The album got very good reactions and was a living proof that melodic hard rock still had an audience. Singer Randolph Reymers made his debut as lead singer after having sung backing vocals on several albums before Vision. As VISION was taking a break from recording Lars went into in studio at the end of August 1997 with a bunch of new songs which definitely showed that hard work pays off. This new album was Lars finest hour thus far in 'Obsession' with his best guitar playing ever as well as some of his better compositions.
Add to that singer Björn Lodin who never sounded this good before! The reviews of 'Obsession' were excellent, Progression magazine of USA called the album 1998’s best Guitar album and it was clear to everyone that Lars had taken a major step forward, but Lars felt it was just the beginning of a new era. In the autumn of 1999 Lars begun writing for another album and just to make things more interesting Lars invited some friends and well known musicians to guest on the project. These included : Patrick Rondat (Jean Michel Jarre) Rob Johnson (Magnitude 9), Erik Norlander (Lana Lane, Rocket Scientists) Pär Lindh (Pär Lindh Project) Esa Pietilä and more… The new 70+ minute long opus consists of 14 new compositions jam packed with Intense musical ideas influenced by classical music, classic hard rock, heavy metal, progressive rock/metal with lots of virtuoso performances from Lars and his guests. Soft melodic ballads and super tight odd meter riffing – it’s all here! In the year of 2000 Lars put together a progressive band called 'Condition Red', the debut album features keyboard maestro Derek Sherinian (ex- Alice Cooper/Dream Theater) and Lars’ friend Alex Masi (on additional guitars). Lars next project was to record a new Mattsson album, this time with ex-Balance of Power singer Lance King, and the result, 'Power Games' was released in 2003 and received fantastic reviews all over the world. In 2003 Condition Red reformed to record and release their second album of progressive rock titled “II”, not too long after this Lars band from the 90-ies made a short comeback in 2004 with a new album “On the Edge”, however Lars major work in 2004 was the new super group 'Book Of Reflections' which include singer Andy Engberg (ex-Lion’s Share/Section A etc…), Vitalij Kuprij etc…but Lars biggest challenge this far was the progressive metal concept album/metal opera 'War' which was released in 2005 and which features: Mark Boals (Yngwie Malmsteen), Vitalij Kuprij, Lance King, Rene Janssen(Ayreon), Benny Jansson (Tears of Anger/Beyond Twilight) etc... The same year also saw the first instrumental release in 10 years in the guise of the eclectic "Earthbound".
Mattsson found a new vein of creativity and by 2006 had completed "Book Of Reflections II : Unfold The Future" with vocals by Martin LeMar (Tomorrow's Eve) and Björn Jansson (Ride The Sky / Tears Of Anger), with additional guitar from Anand Mahangoe (Sphere Of Souls) and keyboards from Mistheria (solo, Bruce Dickinson, Angel Of Eden). 2008 saw Mattsson gearing up for arguably his finest hour in the accessible symphonic and prog metal of 'Dream Child'. Joining Lars was new vocalist, the female powerhouse Adrienn Antal whose soaring voice combined with the best song writing to date sees Mattsson step out on a new path with its potent new sound for 2008. Read more on Last.fm.
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