Sweden's Work Of Art may new to some but they've been around since 1992. Herman Furin (drums) and Robert Säll (guitar) met around a common thread: songwriting. Many years passed before what is now Work Of Art. But they've added longtime compatriot Lars Säfsund on vocals and keyboards. They're assisted in this project by Urban Danielsson (bass) and Henning Axelsson (keyboards). The result is the entirely pleasing and aptly named, 'Artwork.' This is first class album-oriented and melodic rock. Indeed, it is up in the stratosphere with Khymera or Last Autumn's Dream.
This true 'work of art' has several strong fundamental elements. The first is the vocals of Mr. Säfsund; cripes, this guy is good: strong, smooth, and always in control! Secondly, there is the brilliant songwriting and composition. Also, you need to add to this mix both the strong, sophisticated guitar work from Mr. Säll, and a top notch rhythm section. All together this is a profound effort by all.
Work Of Art includes influences from great peers like Toto (and more Toto), but also Journey, Giant, Mr. Mister, Chicago, Mr. Big among many others. Clearly they have strong roots and a strong sense of purpose in their song composition. With this said, I can say that their is not bad track on the whole album. Some may be more expressive than others and some more repetitive and dull, yet this is a nearly perfect work in this genre. Some of my favorite cuts include the opener 'Why Do I,' and also 'Camelia,' with a definite Toto attitude, 'Too Late, 'Whenever U Sleep,' a smooth and pleasing ballad, 'Once In A Lifetime,' similar to the previous mention, but with better guitar work,' and 'Lost Without Your Love, a distinguishing work which Work Of Art will be known for.
Hands down, this is great melodic rock. Work Of Art has clearly demonstrated that they know their craft. 'Artwork' is a brilliant first effort. Let's hope for an impressive sophomore effort and an astonishing future. Highly recommended!
- Craig Hartranft