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Liquid Tension Experiment’s LTE3: instrumental prog metal masturbation – and proud of it

Dream Theater fans rejoice! Mike Portnoy reunites with John Petrucci and Jordan Rudess for Liquid Tension Experiment’s gleefully self-indulgent comeback

Liquid Tension Experiment LTE3 album review
(Image: © InsideOut Music)

As soon as opening track Hypersonic swings into action, you’re caught in a virtuoso maelstrom. All the musicians here – Dream Theater guitarist John Petrucci and keyboard player Jordan Rudess, plus bassist Tony Levin and ex-DT drummer Mike Portnoy – let rip in an astonishing show of instrumental masturbation. This sets the tone for the supergroup’s first album in 22 years. It’s exhausting yet uplifting. The four revel in playing off one another. They draw from jazz, classical and metal with a joyous abandon that accentuates this as a labour of love. At times, such as Beating The Odds, LTE stray into melodic territory. Liquid Evolution takes them into tribal realms while Chris & Kevin’s Amazing Odyssey is… well, bizarre. They’ve even done an interpretation of George Gershwin’s jazz classic Rhapsody In Blue, which works remarkably well. One for those who enjoy unrestrained musical excellence.