The world of Extreme Metal does not have a better representative than Canada's own Cryptopsy. The band that was formed in 1992 pushes the limits of what one thinks can be done in Heavy Metal music and once they've left you breathless and recovering they kick back in to let you have it once again. As with most powerful bands of this nature the key factor for success lies in the man (or woman) behind the drum kit. Cryptopsy is a leader in the field that they adventure in due to the complexity, creativity and absolute intensity that is drummer Flo Mounier. This double DVD set takes you along for the ride with Mounier and the band as he solos live at Cryptopsy shows, rehearses tracks in the studio and performs at clinics around the world. Broken into 2 areas of study the first DVD is the instructional end. Portioned up according to routines and tutorials, Flo explains them in order to help you better understand how he achieves the level of performance that he is able to do. While some of it might look easy at first be aware that this is an over the top demonstration on the pushing the bodily limits. Once you understand how better to approach them you will not only be a better player but also a smarter player as well. As a drummer I felt that this was enjoyable and informative especially in seeing the "best practices" lined out for the viewer and student. Bad practice routines can lead to injury and given that Extreme Metal is the musical equivalent to the most brutal sporting activities. If you are not in shape and following processes you can and will get hurt. This was excellent to assist the understanding. Flo also performs on his full kit which is a monster collection of cymbals and drums. I like that he featured himself on the full kit rather than scaled down gear. Showing it all allows for you to see what he is talking about a little better.
DVD2 will sate the appetite for anyone who is hungry for drum solos as there are over a dozen of them present here. Each of them is shown from different angles in order to give the viewer the highest level of appreciation of what is being showcased. Many are from right behind the kit and not front shots and that essentially places you in the driver's seat where it is all laid out. Some stuff is difficult to follow since he is performing at sometimes lightning speeds, yet after watching DVD1 most of this will make more sense to you and be a little easier to comprehend. There is also an interview with Flo that while in French does provide you with English sub-titles so you will not be lost. Behind the scenes footage from Cryptopsy's new CD recording is also featured. I highly recommend this DVD Set for all drummers who are interested not only in Heavy Metal music, but also for those that want to see how well the limits of one's capabilities can be tested. Progressive fans of Mike Portnoy will find this a great addition to the drumming volume library as you can apply the two schools of thought together and come up with something extraordinary if you are skilled enough. Fans of Black, Death and Grind core would be best served to grab this to see what the next level is in their genres of playing as well. Some of this is visually mind-blowing and you don't even have to be an ardent supporter of Cryptopsy to get into it. This is an independent release and can be purchased at Flo's website which has been linked for your ease of access. You might also want to grab a book on stick control exercises while you are at it - You're going to need it.
Track Listing DVD1
1. Foot & Hand Technique
2. Warm Up Routine
3. Stretching & Workout Tips
4. Speed, Endurance & Control Building Exercises
5. Grind Library
6. Drum Set Up & Drum Head Tension
7. Playing Around
8. Song Rehearsal (multi-angles)
9. Photos, Notations
10. Gear, Influences