Sons of Apollo – ‘Psychotic Symphony’

 


THE BAND:
Jeff Scott Soto (Trans Siberian Orchestra, Talisman, ex-Journey, ex-Yngwie Malmsteen, ex-Axel Rudi Pell) – lead vocals
Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal (Art of Anarchy, ex-Guns N' Roses) – guitar
Billy Sheehan (The Winery Dogs, Mr. Big, ex-David Lee Roth) – bass
Derek Sherinian (Black Country Communion, ex-Dream Theater, ex-Alice Cooper, ex-Platypus, ex-Yngwie Malmsteen, ex-Kiss) – keyboards
Mike Portnoy (The Winery Dogs, Transatlantic, Flying Colors, Neal Morse Band, ex-Dream Theater, ex-Adrenaline Mob, ex-Avenged Sevenfold) – drums

 


TRACK FRAGMENTS:
1.) “God of The Sun” – The intro to this track opens with a sitar arrangement.  Bumblefoot played a few lead licks connecting the intro to the musical verse.  The musical verse consisted of an Arabic musical arrangement.  Mike and Billy’s opening drum line and bass line just blew me away!  Leading into the musical verse there was a rhythm guitar arrangement.  As a former drummer all I can say about Mike’s drum fills and drum rhythm underneath the rhythm guitar is, OH MY GOD!!!!!  For the musical verse the band pulls the musical rhythm back a little to let Jeff’s vocals take over.  The verse musically and vocally was amazingly very well structured! The band just punches you in the chest!  As musically technical as the chorus is Jeff adds a certain hook to the song.  The bass drum work on this track had to be some of the best I have ever heard!  After the second chorus there was a breakdown section that include a B3 Hammond organ.  This breakdown included all the members underneath a Jeff Scott Soto vocal line.  The breakdown lead to a musical change.  This musical change lead to a lead guitar solo.  In all my years I have never heard one of the strangest well-structured songs in my life. 
2.) “Coming Home” -  I just fell in love with this song!!!  One of my all-time favorites by all the members of the band.

3.) “Signs of the Time” -This track opens with a heavy guitar riff over the top of an amazing drum line.  There was a rhythm arrangement change for the musical verse.  The way Jeff arranged the lyric lines gave the verse a 2000’s feel to them.  For the musical verse Mike’s drum rhythm consisted of mainly his snare and tom-toms.  There was a rhythm change for the musical chorus.  After the second chorus there was a rhythm arrangement change.  After the second chorus there was a small keyboard solo section.  After the solo there was a drastic breakdown section.   This breakdown section included a lead guitar solo.    
4.) “Labyrinth” – This track is probably the most straight forward song on the release.     
5.) “Alive” – This was an amazing ballad that had Jeff Scott Soto written all over it!

6.) “Lost In Oblivion” -This track opened with a siren effect before the drum and bass line kicked-in.  The main intro section had a very abstract feel to it.  there was a drum fill connecting the musical intro with the musical verse.  The musical verse had a very intense feel to it.  The musical change and lyric arrangement was completely Soto.  After the second chorus Bubblefoot played a lot of strange notes that lead to a very short Mike drum solo.   All in all compared to the rest of the song this was pretty straight forward.       
7.) “Figaro’s Whore” – Instrumental
8.) “Divine Addiction” – This track opens with Derek playing a Jon Lord influenced keyboard arrangement.  The main intro section consisted of a fairly straight forward intro.  That is for these group of guys. 
9.) “Opus Maximus” - Instrumental

 

    These days every time a band forms with members from formers bands they are called a ‘supergroup’.  Though to me the term means more than just members from past groups.  It takes certain types of musicians to form supergroups.  Over the years there’s been a ton of so called supergroups.   However, as I said earlier it takes certain types of musicians to pull supergroups off.  The guys in Sons of Apollo are such musicians.  With all honesty I cannot tell you the last time I heard a release this good or this technical.  This CD is a must have for all rock fans and musician’s a like.