I first was introduced to Mr. Mathews when he sent me his debut disc Mindcraft. Although it showed promise and the vast skill that Mathews has as a guitar slinger, the meandering style and lack of any sort of direction made it seem like an album full of guitar solos that showed off his technical ability but had no sense of melody at all.
So, it was with great trepidation that I first put in the new CD by Mathews. This 3 song disc was taken from his latest work that has not been released due to his record company collapsing. I have to say that if these three songs are any indication then Thom has certainly learned from past mistakes and taken his craft to a new level that should turn some heads in the world of guitar virtuosos.
He starts you off with the heaviest and thrashiest piece called "Meth Lab Explosion". Monster riffing and some runs that would make Yngwie sore from snapping his neck are the highlights as Mathews comes through with a devilishly cool piece of metal mayhem.
Thom takes you on a more melodic trip with the gripping, gothic feeling work "Taming the Wyvern". Crossing into the land where classical music meets electric six string bombast, Mathews has created an instrumental piece that will be enjoyed by metalheads and prog metal lovers everywhere.
My favorite of the three songs has to be the closer "The Tear Collector" where Thom takes you from heart stopping metal bedlam to exquisite acoustic passages that show his more melodic approach. Mathews shows the maturity and sense of musical continuity that was lacking on his previous work.
This is a most compelling teaser with just three songs of such high quality. I will anxiously await to hear what will be forthcoming from this Atlanta, Georgia guitar slinger.
1. Meth Lab Explosion
2. Taming the Wvern
3. The Tear Collector