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John Petrucci - Suspended Animation CD (album) cover


John Petrucci


Progressive Metal

3.05 | 140 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
2 stars I am a fan of Dream Theater, and I think John Petrucci is a very tasteful guitarist.

Well, he can be.

I know, I know, he's doing a solo album, trying to work out these urges to eat people with his guitar. And it does make this music enjoyable. He plays really fast all over those frets, and it gets impressive. There are some chops on display here that are not easily found in Dream Theater or Liquid Tension Experiment. The rest of the band keeps up nicely. All in all, hey, fun.

But then, as far as an album goes, it gets old fast. Not only do a lot of these riffs and solos remind me back quite heavily to Dream Theater, as is fair, the truth is that it seems that John here wrote himself into a box. His songs are all progressive, as such, featuring odd time signatures and all that. Academically, it's nice. But when it really comes down to it, he's playing the same things he's been playing. The solo album is almost like an exorcism of his redundant, in a way. At least, it should have been, though he turns out some of the same sorts of materials again with Dream Theater.

One of the problems is moods. Great riffs or melodies fade pretty fast to either mindless noodling or a Joe Satriani sort of bridge. While it's not bad, trust me, it's not really all that interesting in the long run. And so, even though I enjoy this album and enjoy the talents of John Petrucci, I think Suspended Animation deserves a mere two stars. It's slightly subpar for a progressive metal album, but that's to be expected, I guess, for an album built around and focusing on solely one guitarist.

If you just can't get enough John Petrucci, go ahead. If you want some wicked shredding, go ahead. But if you love Dream Theater and want more of the same, this is not quite the place to go. The music is quite similar, but this lacks the flair and depth that the rest of that band provides.

LiquidEternity | 2/5 |


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