Vinnie Colaiuta

Vinnie Colaiuta

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Long-revered session drummer Vinnie Colaiuta jets to fusion's version of The Twilight Zone on his Stretch Records debut, a multi-influential, hardcore player's fiesta rife with moody effects, monster expressions by all his high-powered pals, and decadent experimentation. So, is that good or bad? Depends on your perspective. From a purely artistic point of view, if your listening palette can handle rambling but iron-fisted nuclear power and intrusive samples, then it's a fantastic look into another realm. If organization and focused craft is an issue, if melody is king, it will drive you insane while still provoking you. To focus on the positive aspects: Colaiuta's amazing as an all-around percussionist, serving up a hip-hop, blues atmospheres, even a wailing dance cut ("Momoska"). The guest list, from John Patitucci to Herbie Hancock to Sting, contributes ear-popping extravagance. Michael Landau strokes his strings like an alien comet from Krypton. And the leader even shows a softer side ("Darlene's Song"). Overall, intriguing, though more fun for the musicians involved than for the listener.

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