Marco Minnemann is known recently as the studio & live drummer for Edie Jobson’s UKZ Project. Marco is one of the top drummers of our time. To hone his skills, he recorded an ambitious 51 minute drum solo. Then commissioned some of the top progressive minded musicians of today like Trey Gunn to add content to the solo.
At first, Marco was intending to release all of the recordings from the aforementioned commissioned musicians in a box set, but that never happened. Some of musicians like Trey Gunn released their individual version of the “Normalizer 2“ project using their own album title.
Now enter Kerry Chicoine, a prog musician from Southern California, while not one of the originally chosen by Marco, was in his own words “a party crasher”. He had completed his version long before everyone else. He waited to release his version until he saw others releasing theirs. Kerry kept the “Normalizer 2” project name.
Unlike Trey’s version, Kerry had recorded his compositions for the project, some in long form improvs. Kerry’s instrumentation skills are amazing and show a different side than his work in his own band, Mars Hollow.
The opening track, “Diane Linkletter Has Left The Building” (8:51) starts off this wild 51 minute ride. Next up are “Ipso Facto” (10:40) & “I Guess I Don’t” (10:27) with the latter displaying a more pronounced jazz-fusion vibe.
The longest track “If You've Been Seriously Injured…” (16:16) continues in jazz-fusion vein while adding some moments that recall modern King Crimson meets Planet X nature. The last track, “Last Gasp Of A Dying Planet” is the shortest (4:31) and finishes up the CD perfectly.
Kerry’s compositions on this project are more guitar-driven and contains a more warm organic feeling. For this alone, I would want to revisit this CD more often because it feels like an honest recording, with probably no overdubs.
The packaging is in a cd-r format housed in a slim line case which would be a minus point for me. But that such very minor problem and as they say “let the music do the talking”. If you can get your hands on this and I highly recommend you do so. It will perfectly compliment any true music connoisseur’s CD collection.
Reviewed by Ron Fuchs on July 4th, 2010