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I’ve got to say that I am being thoroughly spoilt with the albums I’m being sent to review recently. There seems to be an abundance of talent releasing fantastic music and I now have the pleasure of introducing you to yet another band who are about to deliver a cracker of a CD. Swedish band Trail Of Murder (how many more quality bands can Sweden produce?) may be a new name, but the musical pedigree and impressive back catalogue of work contained within their ranks speaks volumes. After parting ways with Tad Morose the fantastically named vocalist Urban Breed (also listed as a current member of Pyramaze) got together with former band mate and guitarist Daniel Olsson to start a new band. When Morgana Lefay drummer Pelle Akerlind (who had worked with Breed in Bloodbound) was added to the ranks thinks quickly began to gel. ‘Shades Of Art’ is the result and it is quite simply brilliant!

From start to finish this album screams quality. Fantastically produced by Jonas Kjellgren (Scar Symmetry, Sonic Syndicate) it sounds absolutely massive; in fact, every time I listen to it I’m gradually turning all my controls up to 11! This is Melodic Metal but with the emphasis absolutely on the word METAL, although this in no way detracts from the huge melodies that permeate every song and the fact that some of the guitar riffs manage to kick you squarely in the teeth (check out the track ‘Mab’ for proof). If you’re not singing along with this and banging your head after a couple of spins then there is no hope for you!

Every instrument is superbly played but the real coup in this band is vocalist Breed who should be, based on this release alone, up there with Jorn Lande, Russell Allen and Tony Martin. He has a voice that raises this already impressive album way above the competition. If you don’t believe me listen to the track ‘Some Stand Alone’ and prepare to pick yourself up off the floor! If you can imagine a fantastic combination of Tony Martin / Ronnie James Dio era Black Sabbath, the less progressive side of Symphony X, Evergrey, Circle II Circle, Savatage, Masterplan and Allen/Lande you might be getting somewhere near what Trail Of Murder have delivered here. It’s that good. Now that the lineup has been completed by guitarist Hasse Eismar and bassist Johan Bergquist it really would be a joy to witness these guys live. I really hope Trail Of Murder stick around because if they can deliver a debut album this good then the mind boggles at what could happen with the next one.
Metal Heaven
Review by Rick Tilley
29th Oct 2012
1) Shades of Art; 2) Carnivore
3) Lady Don't Answer
4) Mab; 5) I Know Shadows
6) Your Silence
7) Higher
8) The Song You Never Sang
9) Nightmares I Stole
10) Child of Darkest Night
11) Some Stand Alone
12) My Heart Still Cries
"From start to finish this album screams quality."