80's, Easy-Listening, Old School
""Exhibits" is a magnificent tribute to the AOR of the 80s."
LOLOCELTIC (24.12.2019)  
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Last year saw the release of the magnificent W.E.T. album that we had praised in our pages. The melodic supergroup, made up of members of Work Of Art, Eclipse and Talisman, who gave it their initials, had impressed. But that was not enough for its three leaders. Since then, Jeff Scott Soto, the T of the band, has released an opus with his eponymous band, SOTO ("Origami") and another one is to come in January 2020 with Sons Of Apollo ("MMXX"). On his side, Erik Martensson has thrown a new cluster bomb with Eclipse ("Paradigm"). It thus remained only to Robert Säll, the W, to make talk about him. That's done with the new Work Of Art which took five years to succeed "Framework" (2014).

For this new album, the Swedish trio has surrounded itself with prestigious guests among whom we will mention Jim Peterik (Survivor, Pride Of Lions, etc...) who co-wrote several tracks, bassists Shem Von Schroeck (Toto), Andreas Passmark (Royal Hunt) and Nalle Pahlsson (Therion, Last Autumn's Dream, ex-Treat), and keyboardist Jonas Oïjvall (ex-Jimi Jamison). Jeff Scott Soto also came to help his friend by co-writing 'What Do You Want From Me' with him. But the one who attracts all the spotlight is undoubtedly Vince DiCola. The Swedes managed to bring the legendary keyboardist, composer of equally legendary soundtracks ("Rocky" in particular) out of retirement, and he lent himself perfectly to the game. While he only had to play the solo of the unstoppable 'This Isn't Love', he finally wrote all the keyboard lines for a very old school 80's result.

This last term is the leitmotiv of this real trip into the past on board of the famous DeLorean of Dr Emmet Brown's "Back to the Future". From the energetic and catchy Journey-style 'Misguided Love' to the mid-tempo 'Let Me Dream', which is close to Foreigner's 'Girl On The Moon' without plagiarizing it, each track would have had its place in the best albums of the AOR's golden age. And this is also the feat achieved by Work Of Art: that of furiously recalling the legends of the 80's while managing to offer a modern production and keep its own identity. One thinks of Survivor ('Another Night', 'Gotta Get Out'), House Of Lords (the grandiloquent keyboards of 'Come Home'), Van Halen's 'Jump' (the intro of 'Destined To Survive') but the whole remains coherent and will intoxicate all the nostalgics of this era blessed by the melodic gods. When all of this benefits from Lars Safsund's bewitching vocals and Robert Säll's sparkling solos, there is no need to put up any resistance.

While the approach could have caused fears of an overly invasive mothball smell, Work Of Art manages to pay homage to an era that saw the triumph of bands offering a melodic and slightly muscular rock without sinking into the pale carbon copy. This opus finally brings a beneficial freshness, especially when it is interpreted with such talent.
- Official website

01. Misguided Love - 3:38
02. Be The Believer - 3:59
03. Another Night - 4:09
04. This Isn’t Love (feat. Vince Dicola) - 4:35
05. Gotta Get Out - 4:18
06. Come Home - 4:13
07. If I Could Fly - 4:08
08. Destined To Survive - 4:31
09. Scars To Prove It - 3:41
10. What You Want From Me - 4:19
11. Let Me Dream - 4:59

Herman Furin : Batterie
Lars Safsund : Chant / Claviers
Robert Sall : Guitares / Claviers
Andreas Passmark: Basse / Invité
Figge Boström: Basse / Invité
Henrik Linder: Basse / Invité
Jonas Gröning: Claviers / Invité
Jonas Öijvall: Claviers / Invité
Marcus Möller: Claviers / Invité
Mikael Emsing: Invité / Percussions
Nalle Påhlsson: Basse / Invité
Robert Elovsson: Claviers / Invité
Shem Von Schroeck: Basse / Invité
Vince Dicola: Claviers / Invité
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