Sherinian, Derek - Planet X

Year of Release: 1999
Label: Magna Carta
Catalog Number: MA 9036-2
Format: CD
Total Time: 49:45:00

In a strange bit of cosmic convergence, I was reading an article in the May/June issue of The Planetary Report [published by The Planetary Society] about whether there was or was not a tenth planet further out on the edge of our solar system ... Planet X (evidence suggests not). I was reading this article the day before this disk arrived on my doorstep. I, of course, knew of the existence of this disk, no mystery there - I'd seen the ads, so at least one Planet X is out there. But it hadn't yet been added to the purchase list.

So what does all that portend? Derek Sherinian's Planet X is cosmological universe of space-themed instrumental travels - a metal edged Tangerine Dream, if you will. Bearing such names as "Atlantis," "Crab Nebulae," and "Space Martini" this is a varied disk.

Of course, Atlantis, the place, isn't out there, it's down there, somewhere beneath the Mediterranean ... and volumes have been written on its existence, or non-existence, almost as often (if not more often) as the 10th Planet supposition. Nonetheless, "Atlantis" the track, is a multipart track.

Perhaps a better comparison .. .though not really ... but I was thinking of Fonya. Fonya without the vocals ... it's the same style, genre of music. But there's whole different energy behind it and to it. "Day In The Sun" zips along, being the perfect accompaniment to visuals of so called extreme sports - mountain biking up K2, say.

Helping Sherinian fill out the sound are Brett Garsed on guitar, Tony Franklin (Blue Murder, The Firm) on bass, and Virgil Donati on drums. Instead of the usual guitar pyrotechnics that are often on display in progressive metal (near progressive metal), Garsed is instead playing guitarscapes - swoops, dives, bending notes all with an edge.

More keyboard based than Djam Karet but often in the same spirit. I really like "Lost Island" (part 3 of "Atlantis"), especially Sherinian's keys.

"Money Shot" has an occasional Rush feel about the guitars ... almost like the intro to "The Spirit Of Radio" and thus this is the most apt comparison - instrumental Rush. There is an industrial sheen to the production, where the instruments are rough sounding, fuzzed, ... harsh.


[Of course, nearly five years after I wrote this, that tenth planet was found, though I don't know if it's the same object that was speculated about by The Planetary Society. - ed. 9/05]

Atlantis: Part 1 - Apocalypse 1470 BC (6:59) / Part 2 - Sea Of Antiquity (4:18) / Part 3 - Lost Island (5:38) / Crab Nebulae (4:07) / Box (5:05) / Money Shot (4:26) / Day In The Sun (4:58) / State Of Delirium (2:48) / Space Martini (3:47) / Brunei Babylon (5:39)

Derek Sherinian - keyboards
Brett Garsed - guitar
Tony Franklin - bass
Virgil Donati - drums

Dream Theater - A Change Of Seasons (1995)
Dream Theater - Falling Into Infinity (1997)
Dream Theater - Once In A Livetime (1998)
Planet X (1998)
Platypus - When Pus Comes To Shove (1999)
Planet X - Universe (2000)
Platypus - Ice Cycles (2000)
Inertia (2001)
Planet X - Live From Oz (2001)
Planet X - Moon Babies (2002)
Black Utopia (2003)
Mythology (2004)
Blood Of The Snake (2006)
Planet X - Quantum (2007)
Molecular Heinosity (2009)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin US

Added: August 10th 1999
Reviewer: Stephanie Sollow
Artist website:
Hits: 1012
Language: english


[ Back to Reviews Index | Post Comment ]