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Like any debut solo album from a well-known guitarist, Schizophonic follows Nuno Bettencourt as he careens all over the place, demonstrating just how technically adept he is. And there's no question that he is -- he can play leads and rhythms with a startling fluid grace. What he can't do is write songs. Whether it's the prog rock epics, the grunge-lite rockers, or the country-rock experiments, they're all stylistic exercises, setting up Nuno for his big solo. For most of his fans, that's fine, because they'll gladly hear him play anything, but for most music fans, Schizophonic will simply sound like grandstanding.

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