Derek Sherinian - Inertia Inside Out Music America - 2001 By Rodrigo /images/covers/DerekSherinian_inertia.jpg Derek Sherinian is a person that needs no introduction. Most of us know him from his time with Dream Theater. After Dream Theater and he parted ways, Derek has kept himself busy and in the spotlight in the progressive metal community. He has recorded albums with Platypus, Planet X and various tribute albums. The busy Mr. Sherinian has now come out with a new all instrumental album titled Inertia. As some of you might have read from my review for Situation Dangerous, I am not the biggest fan of instrumental albums and here I find myself listening to two of these albums at the same time. What I thought was going to be nothing short of torture has turned out to be quite an ear opener because just as I enjoyed Situation Dangerous, I have also found myself enjoying Inertia. Derek has recruited quite a talented group of musicians in recording this album. Some of the names you will see include guitarists Steve Lukather and Zakk Wylde, bassists Jimmy Johnson, Tony Franklin and Tom Kennedy and drummer Simon Philiphs who helped co-produce the album with Derek. One aspect of Inertia that immediately sold me is the fact that it is easily accessible. It is not just an album where musicians came together and just jammed. There is structure to the songs and it contains great melodies as well as cool solos by al the contributors. A perfect example of this is found in the first song "Inertia". The melodies of Steve and Derek are absolutely perfect. The electric violin played by Jerry Goodman enhances the song as well as adding another dimension to it. "Frankenstein" is the next track and it features the heavy riffing guitars of Zakk. But this song is not just about being heavy and it still features wickedly cool keyboard melodies. Simon Philiphs also gets a chance to belt out some cool drum solos. The part that I find interesting is from 1:53 to 2:03. This section sounds eerily similar to a part in the song "Pieces of Me" by Fates Warning from their latest album, Disconnected. I dare you to not find the resemblance. "Mata Hari" has a more calm and groovy jazz feel to it. The highlights of this song are once again the great keyboard work by Derek as well as the excellent lead guitar played by Steve. I also hear a Middle-Eastern-influenced section at the end. "Evil Knievel" features very powerful guitars by Zakk and it is one of the heaviest songs found in Inertia. The music actually sounds like a motorcycle, an obvious ode to the famous daredevil. The last song that I will talk about is my favorite "What: A Shame". This is a very gloomy piece that features a very calm but emotional melodic solo in the intro. Beautiful acoustic guitars are also found in this song. The middle section is where the heaviness picks up and it is showcased by excellent lead work by Derek and Zakk. To sum it all up, this is a great album with some minor complaints. There are times when I feel that some of the songs might have been better if they were shorter and at times I swear that some of the songs begin to sound like each other. These complaints are not that big of a deal (it really is just me being very picky) because in the end Inertia is an album that every progressive metal fan will enjoy.