Solo albums with big name special guests have become quite commonplace in the realm of heavy metal circa the early 21st century. And one of hard rock/metal's most sought-after keyboardist, Derek Sherinian, followed suit with his 2006 solo effort, Blood of the Snake. With a star-studded guest list that includes Billy Idol, Yngwie Malmsteen, Zakk Wylde, and John Petrucci (among others), Blood of the Snake is -- rather expectedly -- a metallic potpourri. The Wylde-penned "Man with No Name" sounds very much like (go ahead, take a guess) latter-day Ozzy Osbourne, the title track includes tricky riffery à la Dream Theater, while the album opening "Czar of Steel" allows Sherinian to show off his keyboard dexterity. To sum it all up, Blood of the Snake consists of challenging metal that would take the average musician a dog's age to replicate.
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AllMusic Review by Greg Prato