Artist/ Band: Derek Sherinian
Title: Molecular Heinosity
Label: InsideOut/SPV
Year of Release: 2009
Offical Artist/ Band Link

The Review:

1. Who is the band? What is their history? What motivates them?

Derek Sherinian is an international keyboardist/composer who has played with the likes of Kiss, Billy Idol, Alice Cooper, and of course was the former keyboardist for Dream Theater. Molecular Heinosity is his sixth and latest solo album. Derek is enjoying his solo career and the opportunity to “hand – pick, like a movie director”, the guest artists he would like to have appear on his solo works. Some of the important guests on this album are Zakk Wylde, Virgil Donati, Tony Franklin and Brian Tichy.

2. Why did he make this album? What was the passion or message that forced him to produce this album? Or, simply what was the motivation for the themes on this album?

I have not heard any of Derek’s earlier solo albums, so I am reviewing this album on its own merits. Though I am a Dream Theater fan and have most of the band’s albums, including the ones Derek played on. The molecular heinosity theme is reflected in the cover art with many skulls in space. Although there are vocals, they are limited to one song. There is a very strong guitar presence despite this being a solo keyboardist’s album. In fact, some of the keyboard sounds mimic a guitar in a way reminiscent of the Dream Theater Change of Seasons and the Falling Into Infinity albums.

3. What message is the band delivering through their lyrics and music?

On this album, the keyboards, drums and guitar do the ‘talking’, and the sound is powerful, but so similar to what he has done before that I could hardly tell the difference. I don’t know why he left the band, but the band has found a very good replacement in Jordan Rudess. This music might have been created for those two earlier DT albums I mentioned, before Derek left the band. The album sounds like one more set of DT jam sessions that the band maybe thought they had enough of already.

4. Does this music improve, change, or add to the genre? What does the listener receive from listening to the music? Not all new music must create revolutionary change, but does the band’s new album deliver the quality expected from previous releases?

As I mentioned I have not heard the previous solo albums, but I hear so much of the earlier DT in this album. That reduces the power of the album, because it covers ground that has already been covered and covered extensively. Without new lyrics to support it, the music is left sounding like one long jam left of the original DT CDs.

The quality of playing is still very good; it’s just that there is not much new. I don’t even remember trying to listen to or request the lyrics to the last song, since by the time I made it to that song, I was already wishing the CD was over.

5. Does it have longevity? Is it something that I would like to play again and again?

Fans of DT and Derek’s earlier albums will probably like this one in that it does not disappoint, unless you were looking for him to do something different.

As for me I was hoping for something like Jordan Rudess’, DT’s new keyboardist’s solo album. On Jordan’s album of cover songs he adds his own signature to the prog masterpieces he covers. He uses the talent he brought onboard to make a genuinely unique experience despite using mostly cover songs.

Unfortunately Derek did not use the ‘actors’ he assembled to produce a unique and dynamic new sound for himself. So I am left disappointed.

Rating: 4/10

Reviewed by Prof on March 31st, 2009


01. Antarctica
02. Ascension
03. Primal Eleven
04. Wings of Insanity
05. Frozen By Fire
06. The Lone Spaniard
07. Molecular Intro
08. Molecular Heinosity
09. So Far Gone

Reviewed Discography

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