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Ground zero (CD)
The Basis of Vindictiv started in early 2004 and is the brainchild of Stefan Lindholm. At an early stage Stefan contacted keyboard maestro Pontus Larsson and they started to work on some of the songs Stefan had laid down. They recorded a demo with Tommy Karevik (Seventh Wonder) and guitarist Johan Larsson (Johan and Tommy Band). The result was the 2005 demo and it met with some great reviews in Sweden rock magazine. However, Johan and Tommy decided to move on but Stefan managed to contact respected singer Goran Edman (Yngwie Malmsteen / Karma, etc) and, as he liked the songs, he put his heart and soul into making them fantastic. Bass player Nalle Pahlsson (Zan-Clan, Treat) joined the already impressive line-up and through Goran they got in touch with drummer Mikael Wikman, who played on the debut (ESM164). Zoltan Csorsz has since taken the stool and his fantastic drumming can be heard on "Ground Zero"
Musically the band is everything you would expect and more from Sweden. Goran Edman sings his heart out on seven of the eleven tracks and his powerful pipes suit the band in a way that just can only be described as awesome. The guitar technique of Stefan Lindholm is as crisp and neat as ever, and he seems to effortlessly produce exciting riffs and melodies with nonchalance. His early years admiring and emulating the works of Malmsteen and Vai shine through but he does have a technique of his own that finds its way through. Keyboards play a vital role in the overall sound and there are plenty of "cat and mouse" keyboards throughout, and when in harmony, form a grand wall of sound. The inclusion of Oliver Hartmann and Mark Boals in the vocal duties is a clever one and gives the band a more interesting slant; their input puts the cherry on top of the cake. There is simply not a weak track on the CD and the huge leap forward in sound since the debut is unquestionable.
"Ground Zero" is a fantastic outing into Majestic Metal with the flawless guitar technique of Lindholm leading the way, of course backed by the pedigree of the band members. Vindictiv have taken a big step forward and have matured beyond all expectations.
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