LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT

Progressive Metal / Non-Metal • United States
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Liquid Tension Experiment was an instrumental progressive rock/metal project consisting of Dream Theater members John Petrucci (guitar), Jordan Rudess (keyboard), and Mike Portnoy (drums), as well as progressive rock icon Tony Levin (bass, Chapman stick) of King Crimson. The combo was formed as a side project to Dream Theater in 1997. Rudess was asked to join the band largely because of the success of the Liquid Tension Experiment; Mike Portnoy mentioned it in the introduction of the "Liquid Drum Theater" instructional DVD and in the Score Documentary. Jordan Rudess had previously declined the offer to join in 1994, instead becoming a member of the Dixie Dregs. The band played fast, fusion-based pieces similar to those of Dream Theater, if somewhat more jazzy, less orchestral, more virtuosity, and (almost entirely) devoid of vocals.

Liquid Tension Experiment released two albums, Liquid Tension Experiment (1998) and Liquid Tension Experiment 2 (1999). A third album,
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2004
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LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Discography

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT albums / top albums

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Liquid Tension Experiment album cover 3.53 | 37 ratings
Liquid Tension Experiment
Progressive Metal 1998
LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Liquid Tension Experiment 2 album cover 3.78 | 37 ratings
Liquid Tension Experiment 2
Progressive Metal 1999
LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Spontaneous Combustion (as Liquid Trio Experiment) album cover 1.77 | 7 ratings
Spontaneous Combustion (as Liquid Trio Experiment)
Non-Metal 2007

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT EPs & splits

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT live albums

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Live In NYC album cover 3.50 | 2 ratings
Live In NYC
Progressive Metal 2009
LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Live In LA album cover 3.50 | 2 ratings
Live In LA
Progressive Metal 2009
LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT When The Keyboard Breaks: Live In Chicago (as Liquid Trio Experiment 2) album cover 2.75 | 2 ratings
When The Keyboard Breaks: Live In Chicago (as Liquid Trio Experiment 2)
Progressive Metal 2009

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT re-issues & compilations

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Mike Portnoy: Prime Cuts album cover 3.50 | 4 ratings
Mike Portnoy: Prime Cuts
Progressive Metal 2005
LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT LTE Live 2008 album cover 4.50 | 5 ratings
LTE Live 2008
Progressive Metal 2009

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT singles (0)

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
3.75 | 2 ratings
Live In NYC
Progressive Metal 2009
.. Album Cover
3.75 | 2 ratings
Live In LA
Progressive Metal 2009

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Reviews

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Liquid Tension Experiment 2

Album · 1999 · Progressive Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
martindavey87
'Liquid Tension Experiment 2' picks up exactly where its predecessor left off, reuniting John Petrucci and Mike Portnoy of Dream Theater, with Tony Levin of King Crimson and Jordan Rudess, who would join Dream Theater shortly after the release of this album. Noticeable immediately is how much more complete and richer this record sounds when compared to the bands first outing. Not as self-indulgent, nor full of improvised jams, the songs sound a lot more structured, organized and consistent.

As you would expect, the musicianship between the four members is astounding, with everyone being given ample opportunities to show off their skills. "Often imitated, rarely duplicated". Few artists have this kind of connection with one another. These guys are all masters of their respective instruments.

While this album is overall a stronger release than their debut, there are still a few weak tracks. In fact, it's the last three songs that slow things down a lot, as the first half, in particular, 'Biaxident', 'Another Dimension', 'When the Water Breaks' and in my opinion the groups finest work, 'Acid Rain', are all instrumental classics that are rife with incredible technical playing.

Of the two Liquid Tension Experiment albums, this is definitely the better one. Less pretentious than the first, 'Liquid Tension Experiment 2' is a fine slab of instrumental progressive metal. Fans of Dream Theater will no doubt need this in their collection, but it's diverse enough that even casual prog fans will enjoy it.

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Liquid Tension Experiment

Album · 1998 · Progressive Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
martindavey87
Liquid Tension Experiment was formed in 1997 by Mike Portnoy and John Petrucci of Dream Theater, Tony Levin, best known for his work with King Crimson, and keyboard virtuoso Jordan Rudess (who would go on to join Dream Theater after the evident chemistry displayed throughout this project). They play instrumental progressive metal, with musicianship of the very highest standard.

While there are some people out there who aren't fans of constant shredding and noodling away and who might be discouraged from getting this album, there is a lot more on offer here than merely a competition to see who can play the fastest. Some of the music is as experimental and as obscure as the band's name. Namely, 'Chris and Kevin's Excellent Adventure', 'Osmosis' and 'The Stretch' are all rather demanding tracks which serve to see just how "out of the box" the listener can go.

But of course, this is an album featuring some of prog metals most prominent figures, and there's no way we can leave out the breath-taking acrobatics, for which we have the two best songs on the album; 'Paradigm Shift' and 'Universal Mind'. Fans of Dream Theater will definitely enjoy these tracks!

As a whole though, this album is just a bit too disjointed for my tastes. There's some incredible playing and chemistry between the members, but I usually find myself only listening to the two songs I mentioned above. On top of that, there's that blasted 'Three Minute Warning'. A 28-minute improvised jam, which, while brimming with amazing technical ability, is otherwise considerably boring. It's fine though, the band themselves acknowledge it on the back of the CD cover, stating that this song is not for the musically faint-hearted, or critics of self-indulgence.

Overall this isn't a terrible album, in fact, it is pretty good in small doses, I find. Fans of Dream Theater will definitely want this in their collections, and most fans of progressive music in general will find something here to sink their teeth into.

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Spontaneous Combustion (as Liquid Trio Experiment)

Album · 2007 · Non-Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
martindavey87
Damn, is this a tough listening experience or what?!

Now, I love Dream Theater, and of course I enjoyed their Liquid Tension Experiment side-project, so it'd make sense that when this album was released, marketed as "Liquid Trio Experiment" due to the absence of guitarist John Petrucci, it was something I had to have in my collection.

And there it shall remain until my dying days, though sadly not by choice, but more due to my obsessive collecting disorder (is this a real thing?).

'Spontaneous Combustion' is nothing more than improvised jazz fusion jams and rehearsals. It's so musically self-indulgent I struggle to see what made them think it was something worth releasing that people would want to hear. I struggle even more to comprehend the fact that there is probably someone out there that genuinely listens to this and enjoys it.

But nope. Not me.

I can appreciate the amazing chemistry and versatility of all the musicians involved, and while there's maybe a few cool "moments" dotted around, it's not something I'll ever come back to or make an effort to find among the midst of mindless self-indulgence. As a whole, the album is just boring, and features nothing of any real substance.

Plus, it irks me that these guys can release and sell an album featuring nothing more than a staggering 78 minutes of mindless noodling, and it's still better than anything I could come up with.

Sometimes it sucks being a collector.

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Liquid Tension Experiment 2

Album · 1999 · Progressive Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Dellinger
The second Liquid Tension Experiment album is a very similar affair to their first one, though this one only has one of those soft ballad kind of songs, it mainly has the full blown Prog Metal songs, and the improv ones. Once again I like better the metal ones, since I'm not so fond of improvs. However, my very favourite songs here, and the main reason to have this album, are "Acid Rain", and "Another Dimension", which are really spectacular. "Acid Raind" kind of reminds me of "Paradigm Shift" from the previous album, and "Another Dimension" is just heavy and excellent, with even an accordion section near the end of the song, which if not done righty would totally ruin the song, but in this case it's just great. The other great metal song would be the epic "When the Water Breaks", which is indeed very good, but perhaps a bit overlong and not as tight as the previous ones. And "Biaxident" would be for me the more boring (and softer) of the metal songs, though it still has some very good moments.

As I said, I'm not particularly a big fan of improvs, but I still can enjoy them, and this ones are rather nice, particularly "Chewbacca", which has a very nice hard rock riff. Not much more to say about then anyway. And the album ends with the only straight ballad, which once again is nice but nothing that I really crave to listen to.

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT Liquid Tension Experiment

Album · 1998 · Progressive Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Dellinger
This would almost be a Dream Theater instrumental release, and a very good one too. However, when it was released, it wasn't so close to DT's sound at the time, but it did give a hint of things to come once Jordan Rudess joined the band (mainly faster and and crazier keyboards than before, and somewhat less atmospheric). I guess this album can be divided in three kind of songs:

The metal proggy songs, which are by far the ones I enjoy the most, being my very favourite one "Paradigm Shift", which would resume what I like best of this album. In this category also fit "Kindred Spirits", "Freedom of Speech", and "Universal Mind".

Then there are the soft and light hearted songs, kind of included to give you a moment of breath after the other frenetic songs. I'm not really particularly fond of this songs, but they are still enjoyable.

And last is the "Three Minute Warning" songs, or song. This ones are mainly a long 30 + min improvisation jam. Now, I'm not really the biggest fan of improvs, mainly becaus it shows they could use a bit more work to polish them, and they hardly ever have strong melodies, and this one is not the exception, but it is still very enjoyable too, and anyone who is really fond of them should really give this one a listen.

I go with 4 stars with this, mainly because I find the metal songs really great, but the rest are just good, but not essential in my book.

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