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Terrana, Mike: Man of the World

Perhaps the best thing you can say about Man of the World, the second solo instrumental album from metal drummer extraordinaire Mike Terrana, is that it doesn't sound like a solo instrumental album from a metal drummer. And I mean that with the utmost respect. Here is a guy, an American musician living in Germany (hence the album's title?), who has toiled in undeserved obscurity while gigging with the likes of Axel Rudi Pell, Tony MacAlpine, Artension and most recently Rage and Zillion and he has put out an album that's a veritable melting pot of musical styles that doesn't overemphasize the beat.

Sure, "Easy Does It" boasts intricate percussion techniques and "Spin Drifter" sounds like rolling thunder, and every song certainly has a dominant groove. But all of Terrana's playing is accented by stunningly melodic and crisp accompaniment from guitarists Victor Smolski (Rage) and Cyril Achard (Taboo Voodoo), plus bassist Kevin Chown (Magnitude 9, Artension, MacAlpine). "Revenge of the Cachaca" even delights with piano and horns to give the song a sing-songy Latin vibe, "Sonata #9 Pathetique/Beethoven" features only a piano, and "One for the Road" borders on jazz fusion.

But don't let these songs fool you: Terrana is monstrous drummer. I've been to a Rage gig, and the drum solo (and charming wit) that poured forth from this man made Mike Portnoy and Neal Peart look tame. For proof, just listen to the 11-minute drum solo finale on Man of the World, which was recorded live with Rage in Japan in 2002. If you don't already own some of the albums on which Terrana plays, get them. And pick up this one while you're at it.


Track Listing:
1) The Omen
2) Native Tongue
3) Easy Does It
4) Revenge of the Cachaca
5) Spin Drifter
6) Sonata #9/Pathetique
7) One for the Road
8) Five Alive
9) Jungle Alley
10) Sorcery
11) Drum Solo

Added: June 27th 2006
Reviewer: Michael Popke
Related Link: Lion Music
Hits: 2764
Language: english

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Terrana, Mike: Man of the World
Posted by Ken Pierce, SoT Staff Writer on 2006-06-27 08:13:59
My Score:

Mike Terrana is one of the greatest drummers Metal music has to offer and if you have listened to the music of Rage, Artension, Axel Rudi Pell and Macalpine you are very aware of that. His second solo release takes into a world that you don't often get to have from a Metal drummer. The record itself is a unique blend of heavy music and progressive elements that will impress not only drummers but all musicians. It was impressive for one usually gets too much in the way of drum exposition rather then focusing on the music while Terrana makes sure to focus on the song while at the same time delivering well-thought out syncopations for the listener. He gives drummers like Rod Morgenstein and Mike Portnoy a run for their money by raising the musical bar in the same fashion they do on their efforts. Refusing to stick to form there is a solo piano piece in "Sonata #9 Pathetique/Beethoven" and a Latin flavored flourish with "Revenge Of The Cachaca". Clearly he did not take the tradional or expected route with Heavy Metal drumming covering the length of the album. Yet despite the variations on the theme he also does not leave his Metal roots behind by giving the listener a drop-dead solo at the albums close. This 10 minute display of prowess will prove beyond any doubt that he has what it takes to impress the throngs of Metal supporters. Fans of thunderous power Metal should check him out with some of the Rage releases that are also available on both SPV and Nuclear Blast Records in the States. He also seems like the type of drummer one would enjoy in concert as he comes across as having a very personable and wild stage appeal. Check him out sometime.

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