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Planet X - MoonBabies CD (album) cover


Planet X


Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.02 | 149 ratings

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Queen By-Tor
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Ever heard the song Tumeni Notes?

Well, it doesn't matter, I was referring more to the title anyways. The play on words of too~many~notes is exactly what I think whenever I listen to this project. Brimming with talent, Planet X is the (moon)baby of ex-Dream Theater keyboardist Derek Sherinian and Tony MacAlpine on guitar - and they really wanted to do something complex here. In fact, that was the actual mission statement of the band going into the recording studio, they wanted to make something monstrously complex. Call it self indulgent or call it pretentious, (the prog world certainly has heard those words enough that hearing it again isn't going to bring tears to the eyes of the artist) it really doesn't matter because if there's one thing you can't take away from these boys is that they really know how to play. If there's one thing that you can't deny when listening to this album it's the skill behind the instruments, and that is something very respectful indeed.

The music on the album is very well planned as well. It really is a crazy mix of prog metal and jazz fusion with a hint of Dream Theater thrown in there for good measure. The songs are all fairly short, the longest being around 6 and a half -ish, meaning that there's no winding epics for the artists to go on, so in that respect they've (*gasp*) restricted themselves. To compare them to anything I'd have to say, ''it's like Weather Report meets Liquid Tension Experiment in space''. These guys know structure, and they're heavy as hell. Anyone who likes a dominant keyboard and a strong lead guitar will find themselves drawn towards this one.

And yet, there's something about it which never demands more. Listening to the album there's an overwhelming feeling of the evil 'wall of sound' that so many albums fall victim to. After a while it becomes hard to pick out one song from another until about the sixth of seventh listen when they start to become different tracks. Really, the album turns into one nice big slush of progressive jazz metal.

Still, it has its ups again. Much like other virtuosos in the field of instrumental albums these guys know where to put the hooks and the catchy bits to make you bob your head along. This one is ultimately very good, but it will find more fans among those who really like their music overly and purposefully complex. 3 moons out of 5 - recommended, but more for people who really like instrumental virtuosos showing what they can do.

Queen By-Tor | 3/5 |


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