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Levin - Minnemann - Rudess picture
Levin - Minnemann - Rudess biography
Founded in USA in 2013

The band is Tony LEVIN (bass), Jordan RUDESS (keyboards) and Marco MINNEMANN (drums, guitars). They have played on different big bands in the progressive rock genre (KING CRIMSON, DREAM THEATER, PETER GABRIEL, ETC.) so you get an idea of the music you will find here; some heavy progressive fusion rock mostly instrumental. Tony and Jordan have played together with LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT but here, it's their first CD with MINNEMANN. The music covers a lot of ground with a lot of variety from one song to the other and is a nice way to appreciate the versatility of those amazing musicians. This project started when Tony chose Marco to play with him in studio after he had played live with him in the past. They wrote some pieces and send them to Jordan who added his own touch. The difference with his previous project of LEVIN, TORN and WHITE who was a CD done from by improvising is that the band here had written the songs before adding some character to them by the playing of each musicians. Their first album ''LMR'' was released via Lazy Bones in 2013.

Biography by rdt

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4.04 | 123 ratings
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 LMR by LEVIN - MINNEMANN - RUDESS album cover Studio Album, 2013
4.04 | 123 ratings

Levin - Minnemann - Rudess Heavy Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Honorary Reviewer

4 stars There surely is no need to describe the musical careers and skills of Tony Levin, Marco Minnemann and Jordan Rudess, so I'm not going to bother, but given what they achieved over the years it is no surprise that I am just going to say that what we have here is an instrumental album which is certainly worth digging out. I only came across this 2013 album fairly recently, since when it has been hogging an inordinate amount of time on my player. Although all those involved have fearsome reputations for improvisation, this is actually an album of crafted material as opposed to everyone getting together in a studio and wondering what they are able to achieve.

In many ways it reminds me of Colosseum II, but without the fearsome histrionics of Gary Moore as the melodic lead is of course the keyboards of Rudess who is to keyboard playing what shredders are to the guitar. Mind you, the only way for this to really work is if the rhythm section is up to scratch but given that Tony is probably the most in-demand bassist/stick player on the planet and Marco is renowned for his work in all fields of progressive rock and jazz, that is a given. Some instrumental albums rely on the listener spending an inordinate amount of time getting to grips with the thought processes of those involved, trying to get inside the mind to uncover what they were attempting to achieve, but this is an album which can be put on and enjoyed the very first time of playing. One soon moves past the skill of those involved and instead marvels at the sheer musicality of what is being portrayed, although with a great deal of complexity. It is light, yet heavy, complex yet easy to follow, stretches boundaries yet somehow stays within the mainstream.

This is a delight from start to finish, and if, like me, you missed out when it was originally released, then this is an album definitely worth finding. It has also now been made available with an associated DVD, although mine is the single CD version.  

 LMR by LEVIN - MINNEMANN - RUDESS album cover Studio Album, 2013
4.04 | 123 ratings

Levin - Minnemann - Rudess Heavy Prog

Review by Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer

5 stars I'm just going to throw down the gauntlet here: Levin Minnemann Rudess is one of the best instrumental prog experiences you'll ever hear ... and it's a travesty that this album has been kept a secret for years since its release. How am I only the third reviewer!? Well I hope that changes in a hurry, because this is one of the best musical discoveries I've experienced for a long time.

Not that it was much of a gamble, really. Come on, Tony Levin is legendary for a reason. Jordon Rudess is like keyboard wizard (stifled now for years in Dream Theatre), and Minnemann is a drumming journeyman whose probably played with groups or artists currently in your collection. Getting them together is a sure-fire win, but probably not at the level you maybe assume ... it's better.

This record really is one of the best instrumental prog releases I've ever heard. You can compare it to Liquid Tension Experiment, but while that project (also featuring Levin and Rudess) was also heavy on Petrucci guitar and improvisation, Levin Minnemann Rudess is a meticulously crafted technical masterwork. These guys have instrumental chops that are mind-blowing, and are put on display with a very high level of songwriting finesse and ambition. You'll have a lot of fun with these tunes.

It would be difficult to go through individual songs, because they're so twisty-crazy and diverse, but suffice to say this release is modern heavy-prog that features huge riffs, timbre that ranges from manic to mellow, and improvisational highlights throughout. Tony Levin's playing is sharp, creative, and personality-filled. There really is no one that sounds quite like him; bravo Tony for continuing a 30-year streak of excellence. Rudess is like a knight in shining armor for me. I've loved his playing since I first him on 6 Degrees of Inner Turbulence, but his contributions to the mediocrity of Dream Theater had me pretty much writing him off - but holy cow does he cook here. The man carries much of the melodies throughout this album, and brings tremendous energy and charm to the songs. Minnemann also impresses by shifting between the tracks' numerous style and time changes with ease. Very technical; very hip. Exceptional work across the board.

How this record has gone undiscovered here on the Archives is beyond me, but I hope everyone reading this checks it out and supports this group's collaboration. I'm rounding up to a 5-star because there really hasn't been anything quite like this for a while, and it's just excellent. A first-rate instrumental experience!

Songwriting: 4 - Instrumental Performances: 5 - Lyrics/Vocals: NA - Style/Emotion/Replay: 4

 LMR by LEVIN - MINNEMANN - RUDESS album cover Studio Album, 2013
4.04 | 123 ratings

Levin - Minnemann - Rudess Heavy Prog

Review by Evolver
Special Collaborator Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams

5 stars It's not often that an rock instrumental album blows me away like this one has.

In the prog world, Tony Levin is a legend. Among his countless credits is his work with so many of the giants. King Crimson, Pink Floyd, Peter Gabriel and Yes (as ABWH), just scratches the surface of what he means to the genre. Jordan Rudess, of course, has been elevating Dream Theater's music for years with his keyboard pyrotechnics. And Marco Minnemann, while not as well known (yet), has been making his mark with the likes The Aristocrats, Mike Kenneally and some guy names Steven Wilson.

Together this trio has come up with an amazing array of heavy instrumental prog, where whether one listens to individual instrument parts, or the way they all come together, the music all leaves this listener in awe. They blend hard rock, metal, technical fusion and experimental rock to create a wall of prog bliss.

While I love the entire album, the track that stand out most to me are Twitch and Frumious Banderfunk, which both contain many unexpected twists and turns, and Mew, a track that sounds very much like a certain Mr. Zappa's wild Synclavier experiments.

 LMR by LEVIN - MINNEMANN - RUDESS album cover Studio Album, 2013
4.04 | 123 ratings

Levin - Minnemann - Rudess Heavy Prog

Review by EGallager

4 stars When I saw there was a new album with Tony Levin and Jordan Rudess I had to hear it right away. Levin is my favorite bassist, especially when he's on the Chapman Stick. Being a huge DT fan Rudess is also one of my favorites. I didn't know anything about Marco Minnemann going in but when I saw he is the drummer who also provided some guitar work I knew he couldn't be all bad. It does have a similar sound to the Rudess-Morgenstein project which makes sense since a lot of the melodies and layering of sounds are done by Rudess. But here there are a lot more varieties of sounds from his keyboards and synths.

Twitch is a cool fast paced song with a bunch of interesting little add-ins, making the name very appropriate. Levin has one section that stands out to me just tearing it up. Frumious Banderfunk is another outstanding track. Afu Vulu has a lot of different sounds mixed in there like steel drums which I usually think are a good addition to any song that can make them work. Scrod is another one of my favorites with some nice drawn out guitar notes with a faster synth/drum/bass line in the background along with some really awesome solos by Rudess. Orbiter is a slower song with some higher notes on the bass that really set the tone for a spacey little jam. This is another one where the title fits very well. On Enter the Core Rudess uses a variety of sounds to build up the song from a slow start and again on this song they layer a faster rhythm with a slow and somewhat spacey melody. Minnemann kills it on guitars and drums on Ignorant Elephant and Levin and Rudess lend some great support, overall a great tune.

If you're a fan of any of these guys going in I'd say that every song on this album is worth listening to. They do a great job of mixing it up throughout the album so you won't be listening to 14 songs that sound exactly the same. This is also probably my favorite new album of 2013 and I'd love to hear more from these guys in the future. While I do really like this album and it I really have nothing bad to say about, it is not one that is on my top 10 albums and will probably never reach anywhere near that in most ratings. I don't see it being an album that I'll listen to over and over for years to come but will be great to revisit every once in a while so I give it 4/5.

Thanks to aapatsos for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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