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Planet X are an American progressive fusion band that evolved in the USA from Derek Sherinian and Virgil Donati's collaboration on Sherinian's 1999 solo album Planet X.

Sherinian (keyboards) and Donati (drums) have remained the group's core members. Tony Macalpine was featured on the first two studio albums, then left the band. Brett Garsed and Allan Holdsworth are featured on the latest Planet X album as guest musicians. Tony MacAlpine has since returned to the band, as of the 23rd of April, 2009. The bass duties have been handled by various players live and in the studio, but they finally officialized Rufus Philpot as an official band member.

To date they have released three studio albums and one live album. 2000's Universe and Moonbabies (2002) are completed by Live From Oz, also released in 2002. May 2007 saw the release of their latest studio album Quantum.
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PLANET X Discography

PLANET X albums / top albums

PLANET X Universe album cover 3.67 | 8 ratings
Progressive Metal 2000
PLANET X MoonBabies album cover 4.16 | 13 ratings
Progressive Metal 2002
PLANET X Quantum album cover 4.15 | 11 ratings
Progressive Metal 2007

PLANET X EPs & splits

PLANET X live albums

PLANET X Live From Oz album cover 3.50 | 3 ratings
Live From Oz
Progressive Metal 2002

PLANET X demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

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PLANET X Reviews

PLANET X MoonBabies

Album · 2002 · Progressive Metal
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siLLy puPPy
Well you really can’t get any more nerdy or tech-oriented in the music world than the kind of progressive jazz-metal fusion that PLANET X delivers. With founder, keyboardist and ex-Dream Theater participant Derek Sherinian in cahoots with animalistic drum machine extraordinaire Virgil Donati and Tony MacAlpine ripping on the guitars, we are guaranteed a jazz-fusion feast of complexity beyond all expectations.

MOON BABIES is the second release by PLANET X and continues the high velocity virtuosic venomous bite that will leave you gasping for air. While Sherinian and Donati are the official members of this band, on this release we get no fewer than three guest bassists including Billy Sheehan (Talas, Steve Vai, David Lee Roth, Mr Big, Niacin, The Winery Dogs), Jimmy Johnson (James Taylor, Allan Holdsworth, Flim & the BB’s) and Tom Kennedy.

The music experienced here is an instrumental sonic frenzy and is the epitome of complex music for complexity’s sake but that doesn’t mean it is devoid of moods, emotional triggers or atmospheres, it’s just that those are not the primary focus. I personally am a fan of this kind of music if it is well constructed, well recorded and breathes some creativity into its lightning fast wankery. Generally speaking the bass is the grounding force for all the loose wires on board here. The general gist is to set up a musical platform for the guitar and keyboards to trade off ridiculously fast runs but Donati’s rhythmic drumming can become as fast and complex as anything else on board here.

The first time i heard this i wasn’t in the right mood and was put off by it but after a few spins and in the right frame of mind i was blown away and find this music exciting and energizing. Jazz-fusion of the highest quality here where Tony MacAlpine’s lead guitar can range from placid Allan Holdsworth to the frenetic Steve Vai and back in a nanosecond. Good job guys. Gotta check out the other albums.

PLANET X Quantum

Album · 2007 · Progressive Metal
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Dream Theater side projects and spin-offs are thick on the ground, and I personally find them rather hit and miss, but Derek Sherinian has really landed on his feet with this Planet X deal. What makes Quantum such a joyful listen is its seamless blending of progressive rock subgenres you wouldn't have otherwise expected to work so well together. There's a jazz fusion underpinning to affairs which reminds me a lot of UK - indeed, UK's own Allan Holdsworth guests on a couple of tracks - and the guitar performances tend to be metal-oriented, but the overall aesthetic of the compositions, especially when Derek's keyboard textures come into play, remind me of nothing less than space rock in the Ozric Tentacles mode. On the whole, it's a highly competent album which will appeal to anyone in the market for spacey, technically complex instrumental prog.

PLANET X MoonBabies

Album · 2002 · Progressive Metal
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I have many fond memories of listening to this album while developing pictures in a darkroom, and what a perfect place to listen to music like this - in the odd glow of the red light. This band defies categorization - if someone asked me what style they played I'd have to say it's some sort of Progressive Jazz/Metal Fusion, but whatever it is, it is unique. The team-up between Derek Sherinian, Tony Macalpine, and Virgil Donati is amazing - with the insanely complex poly-rhythms between Donati and Sherinian over-layed by Macalpine's masterful sense of melody, it is a perfect pairing. Macalpine seems to make sense of the odd rhythms of the rest of the band with his melodic guitar and the effect astounds.

PLANET X Live From Oz

Live album · 2002 · Progressive Metal
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Shred freaks rejoice! Prog's resident rock star Derek Sherinian (ex-Dream Theater, ex-Platypus, Kiss, Alice Cooper) returns with another installment from his prog/fusion band Planet X. This time around it's a live album called 'Live From Oz' which was recorded on the band's Australian Tour in 2001.

Sherinian and fellow X-er's Tony MacAlpine (guitar) and Virgil Donati (drums) as well as guest bassist Dave LaRue (Steve Morse Band, Dregs) absolutely tear it up on this record! There is more than enough virtuoso musicianship here to please even the most jaded skeptic. Sure, it's over the top, self-indulgent and at times ridiculously fast, but that's what makes bands like Planet X so cool. Heck, for fans of the individual members, there are separately tracked solos from Sherinian, MacAlpine and Donati so you can hear your favorite go off at any point you like.

Now, just because this is a shred record, doesn't mean there is no melody to be found. "Inside Black" is an exquisite display in melodic composition as well as amazing chops. "Warfinger" has a cool groove, which MacAlpine uses well to his advantage. This guy is an absolute legend on guitar going back to the mid-80's with solo albums like 'Maximum Security' and 'Edge Of Insanity'. His solo on this album is absolutely stunning. Virgil Donati has got to be one of the scariest drummers on the planet to boot, as evidenced by his solo. And what can be said about Derek Sherinian? He is without a doubt one of the greatest keyboardists of this generation.

If you're into prog or fusion at all, or bands like Liquid Tension Experiment and Dixie Dregs are your thing, pick up Live From Oz. Your CD player will thank you.

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