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Next review: » Borislav Mitic - The Absolute
Released: 1999, Shrapnel
Circling scales, sweeping arpeggios, classically influenced chord progressions, and a godly lead guitar tone. Fans of instrumental guitar music take note, there is a new guitar maestro on the scene. Borislav Mitic's all instrumental CD runs the gamut from Yngwie-like shredding to influences ranging from middle-eastern, Celtic and classical. Borislav describes his music as having a "significant Yngwie influence...but there is also a lot of other influences such as classical music and cultural music." For me it's the significant Yngwie influence that I'm a sucker for!
Borislav comes from Belgrade, the capital of the troubled country of Yugoslavia. He left the country due to all the shit that is going down over there and he now resides in Montreal, Canada. Strangely enough Borislav claims he is basically self-taught. This guy has a gift, but one that he's obviously worked on very hard through years of practice. Even though he had made a name for himself in his homeland it was the renown Mike Varney of Shrapnel Records in the USA who called Borislav immediately after hearing his music to get him on his label. Released in March 1999, this is Borislav's first release for the label.
For me the highlights of the CD are when Borislav shreds (which is thankfully on most songs) like on "Sky Rider", "Chasing A Dream" (these two are very melodic and have a big classical influence), "Mystic II" (the main/theme riff reminds me of something from Dio-era Rainbow) "Waltz of Time" (begins with a riff reminiscent of Trilogy-era Yngwie...awesome) Even some of the the slower / less aggressive stuff is tasteful. For example "Mystic I" is only lead guitar with subtle background keyboards. Even without the drums and bass this is very dark sounding and excellent for late night listening. I don't get as excited with the mellower side of Borislav's music - hey, after all I'm a metalhead first and foremost! In one or two places Borislav gets a little too heavy on the wah pedal (Light of 7 - part I) I'm thinking of Satraini and Steve Via here - done well but not his finest playing. Let me tell ya though this guy can really really play! I think after playing guitar for about 15 years I should be able to recognize talent when I hear it. I have only a few minor complaints: the overall music could be heavier, there should be more backing rhythms, a couple of tracks with vocals would not be out of place, more intense double kicks over the 'driving' songs would be way cool, and finally the lead sound is amazing but the rhythm sound could be thicker and more crunchy.
Borislav is a name you will be hearing more of as I'm sure that he has a lot of great music inside of him. Let's hope he leans more towards the extreme playing and heavier music and only uses his other influences as 'spice.'
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