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Tony MacAlpine - Premonition CD (album) cover


Tony MacAlpine

Progressive Metal

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2 stars The music of Tony MacAlpine seemed intriguing enough to me to be tried out at least once as I read a few interesting reviews about it recently. I decided to go for "Premonition" for the simple reason that the song titles seemed promising and diversified to me. I'm really interested in exotic cultures, world history and classic music and titles like "Winter In Osaka", "The Czar" or "The Violin Song" woke a glimmer of hope and interest in me.

Well, you see me pretty much disappointed as the album doesn't hold what it seems to promise. There are no violin parts, no exotic folk sounds, and no historical elements. This album is just a random happy metal shred record filled with overwhelming riff masturbation. MacAlpine is surely a gifted player but he has no vision, no concept and not quite a diversity of emotions to share with us. After a few songs, he repeats himself and the album gets quite boring and only convinces as solid background music or for the guitar players out in the world that want to learn something from this gifted musician. Technically, this album is interesting but practically, it's forgettable. Anybody else won't be attracted by this album. A few memorable melodies and well made solos can't save much in here as the same patterns are repeated in an exhaustive way.

Even the solo albums of Timo Tolkki are more entertaining as they are at least more experimental. Another reviewer said that this album has fewer experiments and goes back to the basics. Well, it goes too much back to basic boredom and I should have probably checked out a different album from Tony MacAlpine first but let me tell you that my first experience didn't charm me enough to waste more time and attention on this. A good regular album of progressive, neoclassical or power metal will do a better job than this mediocre effort.

Originally published on on October 5th of the year 2011.

Report this review (#808886)
Posted Thursday, August 23, 2012 | Review Permalink
3 stars This the best 90's album by MacAlpine until "Evolution". The reason is is focused playing, better composed instrumentals and equally good drummer with chops. In addition, this transitional album showcases first signs of MacAlpine dabbling in fusion; it's not anymore soloing into a rock rhythm, feeling and sophistication soar this album into a higher floor.

Two Chopin opuses and one rondeau confirm MacAlpine's advanced piano playing. Most tracks have a melodic guitar line. "The violin song" is a complex fusion composition with incredible guitar/synth solos full of energy and motivation. It's a great combination, complex soloing married with attractive lead motive. "Ghost of Versailles" has a more traditional structure but complex is pretty diverse, still. "Tower of London" has thundering rhythm and neoclassical feeling from the 80's. "Rusalka" is another highlight on the album, slow but tasty guitar harmonies. "Gila monster" is the only typical heavy metal track here and it's good to take it plainly. "Maestro di Capella" has a nice accessible guitar chords with solo guitar in the background. "Inflectio" is the second great fusion track with bass out of this space - its atmosphere is so much different from anything else here. "Animation" is close to progressive metal/rock and the drummer is well aware of it.

A nice album but better ones are still to come!

Report this review (#2309231)
Posted Saturday, January 25, 2020 | Review Permalink

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