Released: 2009, Lion Music
It’s been far too long since we’ve heard new material from Canadian based guitar god, Borislav Mitic. His previous works provided brilliant shedding and melodies so my expectations were high for this long overdue album. The only thing you could say was missing was his previous material might be more of a metallic influence on the backing riffs and song structures. With THE ABSOLUTE things have been brought to the next level in terms of heaviness and shred.
Right away from the album’s opening self-titled track a noticeable difference is apparent. The guitar rhythms are crushing, the feel and style is much more metalized. As always, Borislav’s fluid neo-classical tinged brand of lead is of course the highlight. An added bonus now is that the backing music and songs are something that appeal to me a little more this time around. I only have one request however…get a drummer!!! Oh how I dislike the unfeeling, unemotional, lifeless sounds of programmed drums! They serve a purpose, for a demo, for a rehearsal, for writing, but for a released album, a real drummer is a must in my books. The drum ideas are not all bad, there are some thundering double kicks the right places but it’s clear that a real drummer would take this to another level! Anyway, enough about the drums because despite their distraction, the guitar playing is really what anyone listening to this album is focusing on. From thrash, neo-classical, shredding blues, and traditional metal, Borislav covers a wide spectrum of styles, all the while maintaining a coherent sound.
One of my favourite moments on the album is of course the title track “The Absolute” whose main melody is picked quite fast. The solo that comes in at about 3mins is godly! I really like the nice guitar delay sound at the beginning of the leads in “Hidden” played over a slow and mysterious sounding clean guitar before there is more great melodies. Some of the later legato phrasing in here reminds me of Satriani. The solos in “The Prize of Eternity” are intense! Fast…shedding madness! Awesome! I love the opening riff in “For the Chosen” with its mid-east melodies. The mind-boggling runs after the melody will make most guitarists jealous of how cleanly and fast he nails these parts down! “To One Truth” starts out with a great melodic riff but then is all too quickly abandoned for something far too pedestrian. Then the leads that come in next start out a little too happy sounding for my tastes but thankfully are short lived before we return to the land of awesome.
THE ABSOLUTE is a great return for Borislav, one which I hope will be repeated soon enough with more solo albums and just maybe, someone will get him to play in a full metal band as well. If you like shred guitar at all, then Borislav is a must listen. The shredding is not at all mindless wanking but is rather tasteful and melodic with a wide range of influences to keep the album an interesting listen all the way though.