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JT Bruce - The Dreamer's Paradox CD (album) cover


JT Bruce


Progressive Metal

3.97 | 10 ratings

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Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer
4 stars 'The Dreamer's Paradox' - JT Bruce (7/10)

Talented multi-instrumentalist JT Bruce has returned for a second album with 'The Dreamer's Paradox;' an impressive foray into the realm of instrumental progressive metal. Developing upon the technical and rhythmic style generally associated with giants such as Dream Theater, Bruce takes his prowess at the electric guitar, and composes a generally successful song suite. While the album's style may lack the emotional impact of a masterpiece, 'The Dreamer's Paradox' is an intelligently composed and performed piece of work.

Although the music itself is instrumental, one can ascertain by the track titles, and an extended speech at the end of the album what the music is all about; dreaming and the perception of reality. Having a fair ground from which to sprout some intriguing music, the listener is greeted with an hour's worth of (slightly) melodic technical rock/metal. Although each track appears to function well on it's own, there are reucrring musical ideas throughout the piece that give flow to the album, and the sense that it is a single suite, much like 'Six Degrees Of Inner Turbulence.'

Perhaps I like a bit more variety in my music, but 'The Dreamer's Paradox' feels generally samey, in terms of the way it is both played and composed. Disregarding the recurring motifs (which is to the album's benefit), alot of the album follows the same energetic, upbeat feel. The clearest exception to this rule is the final track, 'Hypnic Jerk.' Undeniably a piece of avant-garde rambling, the piece bears little to no resemblence to the rest of the music here, and packs as much weirdness into a single song as one might expect from a full blown avant artist. Each ten second segment brings in a new musical idea; at times unsettling, but always interesting. While this is very intriguing to listen to, it breaks alot of the flow to the album; making it feel almost as if the album truly ends the track before.

In any case, 'The Dreamer's Paradox' succeeds on a compositional level, even if the execution -not necessarily the guitars, which are well-played, but the other instruments/samples used- feels a bit bland. JT Bruce has come a fair way from his beginnings in 'Anomalous Material,' and anyone with a penchant for typical progressive metal should look into the work of JT Bruce and 'The Dreamer's Paradox.'

Conor Fynes | 4/5 |


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