Brent Sutton - Inception
Progressive rock has always had a spacy, otherworldly quality to it, from Rush's 2112 to Black Holes and Revelations by Muse, and even Trans-Siberian Orchestra's metallic take on Christmas music. Guitarist Brent Sutton is the newest musical astronaut to blast off into outer space - Following a stint with Arizona glam metal band Hollywood Hearthrob, the fresh-faced, spiky haired Sutton set out on his own to record a solo debut, which he christened Inception. At only 5 tracks, Inception is technically an EP, but it definitely does not lack in terms of lengthy, blissful instrumental jams. Two songs in particular, "Celestial Ride" and "Save Us", clock in at more than 6 and 8 minutes, respectively, and feature more than a few moments of guitar transcendence.
Sorry for the pun, but there is a bit of a ‘space oddity' on the album regarding the placement of second cut "Spectral Predule". With a title like that, you think it would have led off Inception, especially with its gentle piano and mysterious female vocals that are in direct contrast with the Steve Vai-like finger tapping that dominates the remaining 25 minutes. While he doesn't list him as an influence on his Facebook page, you tell Sutton's heard "For the Love of God" a couple of times. Having favorably reviewed The Story of Light earlier this year, I was about to brand Sutton as a potential heir apparent to Vai's throne...until a light went off in my head as bright as a firework. Make that Catherine Wheel, the '90s shoegazers with distinctively soulful singer Rob Dickinson. If the last name rings a bell, yes, he is the younger cousin of rock god and 2-time Iron Maiden vocalist Bruce Dickinson. Sutton's pipes brings back fond memories of the countless hours I spend listening to Catherine Wheel, only with a much harder edge. If there has to be a prog-meets-metal version of them, I'm glad it's Brent Sutton.
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