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Review of Platypus' album When Pus Comes To Shove.

July 1999

Ice Cycles

Rod Morgenstein (dr), John Myung (bs), Derek Sherinian (kybd), Ty Tabor (gtr, vcl)

Platypus is one of the most melodic aggregations in the recent prog rock “musical chairs” experiments. Featuring excellent material written and sund by King’s X guitarist/vocalist Ty Tabor, the music here could (and should) be heard on commercial FM rock stations. Rod Morgenstein (Dixie Dregs, Rudess Morgenstein, Winger) long ago proved himself to be one of the great progressive rock drummers, and here blends thick and heavy rock grooves with his progressive chops in an exciting new style of pop/prog drumming.

“Standing In Line” kicks things off with a driving 4/4 rock groove that crosses over odd-time kicks but never loses its solid feel. “Nothing To Say” is a Genesis/Beatles-type ballad with a cross stick groove and a half-time power-ballad drum sound that’s wet and dark. “Rock Balls/Destination Unknown” opens with Morgenstein providing a solid feel and simple yet effective drum breaks; later in the tune he shows his stuff and stretches out. “Plat Opus” again allows Rod to show off his signature fusion chops, “I’m With You” and “Willie Brown” are straight-ahead FM pop/rock tracks, Blue Plate Special” is a total Dregs slow shuffle, and “What About The Merch?” is an early Jeff Beck-like funky instrumental, where Rod fits tight in the pocket.

Morgenstein displays total musicality and control throughout this recording, and still manages to fit in some great chops. This is the sign of a true professional. Let’s hope it makes it on the radio. (Vevel)

Mike Haid

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