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  • Robert Moffitt wrote on February 18, 2007 report

    Quite frankly Glenn this album's in your face/I can play faster than you can/ just because I can/ is so hysterically over the top I can't believe anyone would take it seriously in any context. I can't understand why it wasn't discarded as the rehearsal/demo tracks prior to recording a real album. Composition has never been a high point for MacAlpine in particular.His tunes always seemed to flow backwards from his solos, unlike Satch or Vai or even Johnson. All of them can be over the top as well which is part of which makes them fun. In a progressive context however an entire album of lightning fast,super loud metallic noise just doesn't cut it. Match this up against bands like Ernie Denov's wonderful Bad Dog U or the terrific Helmet of Gnats and Planet X's shortcomings are even more obvious.These bands that I've mentioned have taken the essence of Morse/Holdsworth/Bruford Band and moved on to their own sound. Where on Universe can one even find the keyboards? An occassional organ or e-piano may burble through the industrial squawk and din but I wanted to get to hear Derek finally freed from the constraints of Dream Theater and instead we get this. At least we get some tasty bass from Tom Kennedy but how he even manages to be heard above the roar is beyond me. Wailing on our Woodys was fine when we were all fourteen but we're all a little older now and supposedly have moved on. I expected a lot more from these guys but certainly didn't get it with Universe.