I love all these guys but without Petrucci it is just empty. If you liked the first two LTE albums and/or like DT, don’t buy this.
LIQUID TRIO EXPERIMENT(Mike Portnoy, Jordan Rudess, Tony Levin) SPONTANEOUS COMBUSTION In October 1998, Liquid Tension Experiment reunited at Millbrook Studios in upstate New York to record their 2nd album. A few days into the sessions, John Petrucci’s pregnant wife went into premature labor leaving Mike Portnoy, Jordan Rudess and Tony Levin stranded in an already set-up and booked recording studio. So like any creative and productive musicians would do, they decided to stay and JAM…and JAM they did! Over the course of two days, they played for hours on end. The Trio consciously did not ”compose” or ”write” anything. They simply went wherever the music took them. Several of these jams ended up being used on LTE2. The rest of this music has remained unreleased until now. For some bizarre and still unexplained reason, the master tapes of these jams were misplaced during the mixing process. But, luckily, Portnoy records almost everything he ever does and as a result his live 2-track stereo DAT mixes are the only remaining traces of this historic jam. So what you have here is as live and raw as it gets. No overdubs, no editing, no mixing. Just 3 guys, their instruments and their spontaneous imaginations feeding off of each other. So finally – almost 10 years later – here is Mike Portnoy, Jordan Rudess and Tony Levin flying by the seat of their collective, musical pants. Better late than never!
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This album is shameful. It is nothing like DT or LTE. I can heard Portnoy say “Let’s put out the scraps of a session, they’ll buy it”.
Hey Mikey…we don’t buy (and then love) everything you all create.
i can understand both sides of the argument of how people find this either good or bad. i came into this album understanding that it was really nothing but jamming. i cant say other than this cd that i have a strictly jam cd. obviously with dream theater, king crimson, and even liquid tension experiment, the songs are written and composed, meant to go together. this is just a trio of musicians having fun and i think it’s pretty cool. a lot of the stuff they come up with is beyond any music i’ve ever listened to hence the word ”experiment” in the name of this group. there are certainly some rough parts within this cd which is what turns me a little bit off about it. but, the parts that are actually held together really do astound me because, being a drummer myself, i can see so many parts portnoy holds together where i would fall off track showing that he is very experienced. if i were able to give it 3.5 stars though i probly would because that’s what i truthfully think it deserves. because im such a DT freak i rounded them up a notch. pretty fun stuff, but if u cant handle purely jams with no real rudimentary idea behind it, then it isn’t for u. if ur just down to listen to it for fun, then have fun listening to it when u purchase it!
Read the liner notes! These guys rented a studio and then Petrucci’s wife went into Labor and had to leave. Why not use the studio time for a timeless unaltered jam session? This album is a rare glimpse into a musicians world where these kind of jam sessions are the cosmic building blocks of music. Of course you will hear riffs and whatnot from other places and times. I like that it’s released like it’s recorded. So many diamonds in the rough.
Fans of Liquid Tension Experiment will feel absolutely compelled to grab this CD. I would strongly advise against viewing it as LTE # 3, because it is not that. It isn’t even ‘LTE 2-Part 2.’ Instead we are treated to a whole NEW group… and that is a GREAT thing! The 13 songs on this release were recorded when Liquid Tension Experiment 2 was in pre-production by Tony Levin(b)/Mike Portnoy(d)/Jordan Rudess(k) while John Petrucci’s wife went into premature labor. So, one birth turned into two! Enter, LIQUID TRIO EXPERIMENT!
Portnoy has a brief liner note attached that claims that it is raw; no overdubs, editing or mixing since the original master tapes went missing. The CD was created from his personal live 2-track stereo DAT mixes. (IMHO, they sound absolutely terrific!) The final product is “just three guys, their instruments, and their spontaneous imaginations feeding off of each other!” While I believe this statement to be true, some outline ‘map work’ is present in the CD inlay.
Each improv is an absolute treat to listen to. This group relies more on atmosphere or groove as opposed to the shredding found on the original LTE CDs. Honestly, the closest band(s) that I can compare this release to would be the fractal ProjeKcts that Tony Levin’s band King Crimson released in the late 90s – right around the time that these songs were recorded in 1998. (ProjeKct One: Live at the Jazz Cafe ProjeKct Two: Space Groove ProjeKct Three: Projekct Three – Masque ProjeKct Four: West Coast Live)
If you dig The ProjeKcts, then ‘Spontaneous Combustion’ is a must have.