The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world





Derek Sherinan review


There is no doubt Derek Sherinian is one of the most prolific keyboardists in music today.  There is also no doubt that he has tons of friends who are also prolific guitarists in their own right.  If you are looking for a great album of jazzed up rock tunes that feature Derek and a few of his friends, you should check out his latest, Oceana, which is scheduled to be released September 5, 2011.


If you are expecting a sample of what he has done in the past with Dream Theater or Planet X, you should keep looking.  He also does not breakdown any of the songs he played out on tour with Kiss or Alice Cooper.  What he does is perform flawlessly on an album of soothing jazz that will most likely be enjoyed by most rockers that give it a chance.


Drummer Simon Phillips and Bassist Jimmy Johnson anchor the album playing the part of solid rhythm section.  Tony Franklin of Blue Murder fame, among others, adds his touch to two songs (“Ghost Runner” and “Oceana”).  Derek is obviously showcased on each song as are quite a few great guitarists.  Tony McAlpine opens the CD on the first two tracks (“Five Elements” and “Mercury 7”) and helps set the bar.  Steve Lukather (Toto) adds his virtuoso magic to the next two tracks (“Mulholland” and “Euphoria”).  If you were to add lyrics, either of these songs would have fit well on Steve’s latest, 2010’s All’s Well That Ends Well.  Steve rejoins Derek on the 8th track, which happens to be one of my favorites on the disc – “Seven Sins.”


Steve Stevens, of Billy Idol and Vince Neil fame, adds a little swagger and plays well with Derek on their two collaborations, “Ghost Runner” and title track, “Oceana.”  Derek pulls out all the stops on the latter of the tracks and plays well to accent the guitar solo offered up by Stevens here.  Black Country Communion band mate Joe Bonamassa adds his bluesy touch to “I Heard That.”  Have to admit, would have loved to see this one hit either of the BCC albums with some smooth vocals from Glenn Hughes.  Whitesnake guitarist Doug Aldrich rounds out the friends utilized on this release.  His contribution to “El Camino Diablo” is another strong track on the disc.


Derek must have been one of the best kids on the playground, as he definitely plays well with others.  I can’t wait to see where his other projects, Black Country Communion and Planet X go, but I also can’t wait for the next solo release from Derek.  Oceana is a great addition to my diverse collection.


By Todd