This is another of my favorite types of music: instrumental rock/metal with a “progressive” (aka “Prague Rock”) slant. It was founded by Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy and has three albums. The band, losing and gaining membership, reformed itself as the Liquid Trio Experiment for 2007 and 2009 album releases.
The band is similar to the Isosceles Project, another of my favorite instrumental metal bands, but has a little more star power behind it.
In fact, for the majority of its albums, LTE comprises Mike Portnoy (drums), Jordan Rudess (keyboard), and bass legend Tony Levin (King Crimson and Peter Gabriel). For guitars, after failing to get several choices (including the late Dimebag Darrel from Pantera), Portnoy got fellow Dream Theater band member John Petrucci to bring his guitar to the side project.
The three albums are all that the band will do and most of the material from the Liquid Trio lineup are studio recordings mostly sans Petrucci and generally improvisational stuff. I personally don’t like it as much as the LTE music.
The music of the (now apparently broken up) Liquid Tension Experiment is beautiful, harmonic, and very well done. It’s all instrumental and very innovative stuff to listen to. The moving melodies, quick changes, and very well-coordinated instrumental nuances are some of the best stuff you can hear. Much of the time, I find myself wondering if these guys had a conductor to keep them all in line like the Philharmonic.
Excellent music and definitely good stuff to listen to, whether you’re a heavy metal or hard rock fan or not. Too bad they only recorded the three albums, but I’ll take what I can get.