Exposé Online banner

James LaBrie — Elements of Persuasion
(Inside Out Music IOMCD 204, 2005, CD)

by Paul Hightower, Published 2006-05-01

Elements of Persuasion Cover art

James LaBrie should be well known to Exposé readers by now, either as the vocalist for prog-metal icons Dream Theatre or through his participation in various Magna Carta tributes and Trent Gardner projects. He’s gifted with remarkable talent, regularly displaying an uncommon ability to deliver both hushed and impassioned balladeering as well as full-throated metal wailing. The sheer number of imitators across the globe is testament to his influence on the genre. For his second solo album, LaBrie has again teamed up with keyboard player Matt Guillory (also a participant on the Mulmuzzler side projects) with whom he shares the bulk of the songwriting. The rhythm section of Bryan Beller and Mike Mangini hold down the bottom end with aplomb and newcomer Marco Sfogli has the metal guitar thing more than ably covered. Curiously for a solo album, Elements sounds very much like a band project, thanks to the carefully crafted and articulated arrangements. For the DT crowd there’s plenty of flashy metal fireworks occupying much of the disk’s 66 minutes, though LaBrie has wisely injected subtle techno elements into the arrangements and production that helps to raise the material above mere metal pabulum. Several songs shift into slower, more melodic terrain with Guillory’s keyboards coming to the fore and allowing LaBrie to present a friendlier, more expansive face. DT and prog-metal fans will no doubt want to pick this one up, though the quality shown throughout might also surprise anti-metal hardliners and bring a talented singer to an even wider audience.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 33, 2005 releases

Related artist(s): James LaBrie, Bryan Beller

Latest news

2021-01-18
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more

2020-12-09
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more

2020-11-20
25 Views of Worthing Finally Gets Released – A while ago, we wrote about the discovery of a "long lost" Canterbury-style gem by a band called 25 Views of Worthing. And now we're pleased to find out that Wind Waker Records has released their music on an LP. » Read more

2020-10-14
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more

2020-10-06
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Jean-Philippe Goude - De Anima – Jean-Philippe Goude may be best remembered for his tenure with Richard Pinhas and Heldon, as a one time member of Weidorje, or for his excellent electronic oriented solo album Drones from the early...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues