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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Dallas Perkins

Experimental Truth

Review by Gary Hill

I'm including this review under progressive rock largely because Dallas Perkins is billed as a prog artist. This album does have some definite proggy elements, though. Overall it's closer to the kind of music you expect from guitar hero artists like Joe Satriani and Steve Vai. I can also make out references to musicians ranging from Van Halen to Steve Howe. Other than one piece that has some unusual vocals, this is a purely instrumental album.

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Track by Track Review
Beck Street
A fast-paced drum section brings this into being. Then guitar fires in with a real Van Halen like sound that is purely on fire. The soloing that comes over the top seems to merge that with a bit of a fusion angle.
Deus XM
This is a shorter piece that is basically a guitar solo. It's got the same mix of fusion and Van Halen pyrotechnics, but with a little bit of Satriani added for good measure.
Dynamic Equilibrium
This is a powerhouse hard rocking piece that has some pretty amazing guitar work. Then again, you expect that. This is perhaps closest to things like Joe Satriani and Steve Vai.
Mexican Puppets
There is a short introduction here, then it launches out into screaming hot hard rocking jamming that definitely has a lot of prog and fusion in the mix. There are hints of world music at play. This is intense, powerful and fiery. There is a bass feature section that is so powerful. There are also some vocals that are unusual with an almost otherworldly angle to them. The whole piece works through so many shifts and changes. This is, without question, one of the highlights of the set.
There is a bit more of a metal angle to this number. I like this, but it's perhaps less proggy than some of the rest here. Later, though, this again walks the line between fusion and hard rocking a lot of the time.
Intermeshing Spectra
I love some of the twists and turns on this. There are moments that make me think of modern King Crimson. The cut is a driving, heavy powerhouse with plenty of differing elements at play.
This comes in more textural and atmospheric. It eventually starts to move out to more rocking zones. This is a fairly short piece, but it's also one of the proggiest. It's one of my favorites here, too.
In Via Domum
An acoustic guitar solo piece, this makes me think of something Steve Howe might do. It's another standout.
Here we get the most dynamic and proggy thing of the whole set. This is also another standout. It works through a lot of different moods and motifs. It has some serious fusion in the mix. Yet it also manages to rock out like crazy at times. The closing section is on keyboards strengthening that prog connection.
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