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Ice Cycles

  out of 4 Music Review: Ice Cycles

Artist: Platypus
Genre: Alternative Rock
Release Date: March 2000

Review by Keith "MuzikMan" Hannaleck
No rating supplied

Rod Morgenstein (Drums), John Myung (Bass), Ty Tabor (Guitar, Percussion, Vocals) Derek Sherinian (Keyboards) are Platypus. This respected side project started by Ty Tabor has turned into a legitimate prog-rock heavyweight contender. When major players join creative forces to make up a group to form one supergroup it can mean instant creditability and success right out of the gate, this was surely the case here. This is the group's second album. From what I have read of other people's opinions of their first effort, this CD is much darker. That is of course good news. Progressive music needs to have a hard and dark edge to make a statement. I happen to like it that way myself. Platypus are real taskmasters, they get the job done concisely and in a prolific manner.

What I found out of the ordinary about this group was that there are no musical parallels drawn, so you are unable to generalize or pigeonhole their efforts. This is a very clever tact indeed. There are moments that they sound like a slick rock-pop (The Tower) group with Lennonesque vocals and the next song will be an all out prog-rock oeuvre (Partial To The Bean-A Tragic American Quintogy). I have heard more and more groups that like to offer this kind of multiplicity. "25" is real rocking instrumental that takes you and back and forth through a birth and rebirth of musical incarnations like only a prog-rock song can. I can't say enough about the suite "Partial To The Bean-A Tragic American Quintogy," it's a loud and clear statement not only for prog music as a whole, but for a genre that was once ridiculed and written off as being to "out there." It's their crème de la crème, their magnum opus if you will. Surprise, surprise, this is some of the best music being made today, and it just keeps getting better with every new listening experience I have. These guys rock and sway their way through every song with enough emotional sweat and intelligent melodic foreplay to match the very best active recording artists today.

Ty Tabors vocals and guitar are exceptional, and Derek Sherinian, who happens to be a real busy guy lately, plays forceful and technical keyboards to draw attention to and compliment Tabor's efforts fronting the group. All of these men are fantastic musicians. It seems to be the status quo in the world of progressive rock to do side projects and solo albums all the while maintaining an active role with their main groups. We the listeners are the lucky recipients of all this activity.

1. Oh God
2. Better Left Unsaid
3. The Tower
4. Cry
5. I Need You
6. 25
7. Gone
8. Intor Pompatous
9. Yoko Ono
10. Yoko Two-No
11. Yoko Three-No
12. Platmosis
13. Yoko Againo
14. Yoko Outro



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