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Tony MacAlpine - Edge Of Insanity CD (album) cover


Tony MacAlpine


Progressive Metal

4.18 | 22 ratings

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4 stars The 80's was a golden era for guitar shredders, seemingly a week never going by without a new release featuring one of the guitar gods of the time from the likes of Yngwie Malmsteen, Paul Gilbert, Vinnie Moore, Marty Friedman and of course Steve Vai to name a few. Many were part of successful metal bands but there was also a myriad of guitar virtuosos releasing entirely instrumental albums. One of the better players in this field is Tony MacAlpine who's debut album Edge Of Insanity is an impressive blend of classical influenced power metal.

As well as supplying incredibly dextrous guitar shredding MacApline is an equally adept keyboard player and he keeps good company too, being aided by Billy Sheehan, at the time with Mr Big on bass and Steve Smith, ex-Journey on drums, both excellent and highly regarded players in their own right. Where Edge Of Insanity had an edge over most the guitar shredding instrumental releases of the time was that it wasn't just a showcase for MacAlpine to show the world how fast he could play, he could also write a tune with a strong melody. While the twelve songs here, with the exception of the keyboard driven interlude of Chopin Prelude 16, Opus 28 may not stray far from the neo classical metal template, what they lack in variety they make up for in instantly accessible hooks alongside an impressive display of instrumental chops from all three players.

His follow up album Maximum Security was equally good but I'm afraid I lost track of his solo work after that. Of course many people here at PA will know him for his work with Planet X where I believe he has now returned. However, I digress; Edge Of Insanity has stood the test of time well and is still an impressive collection of instrumental power metal.

Nightfly | 4/5 |


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