Liquid Tension Experiment 2

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Liquid Tension Experiment 2
Studio album by Liquid Tension Experiment
ReleasedJune 15, 1999 (1999-06-15)[1]
RecordedOctober 11 – November 29, 1998 at Millbrook Sound Studios in Millbrook, New York
GenreInstrumental rock, progressive metal, jazz fusion
LabelMagna Carta
ProducerLiquid Tension Experiment
Liquid Tension Experiment chronology
Liquid Tension Experiment
Liquid Tension Experiment 2
Spontaneous Combustion
Professional ratings
Review scores
All About Jazz(favorable)[2]
AllMusic3/5 stars[1]

Liquid Tension Experiment 2 is the second and final studio album by instrumental rock/progressive metal supergroup Liquid Tension Experiment, released on June 15, 1999 through Magna Carta Records. The album reached No. 8 on the Billboard Top Internet Albums chart and No. 40 on Billboard's Heatseekers.[3]


Each song is described by the band in detail within the liner notes. Bassist Tony Levin almost exclusively used a Chapman Stick to record the album's bass parts. The only bass guitar parts on the album occur briefly in "Another Dimension" and the intro to "Biaxident." The latter song takes its name from Biaxin, a medication that guitarist John Petrucci was taking during the recording sessions to combat severe headaches, making a pun on "by accident".

In the middle of the recording sessions, Petrucci had to leave the studio when he got word that his pregnant wife had gone into labor. This left the other three band members to carry on recording by themselves. This is how "When the Water Breaks" got its name, for it was the song the band were working on when Petrucci got the news. The song contains a baby sound effect (a "baby soundscape", according to keyboardist Jordan Rudess) at 12:48 to mark the particular section the band had been writing upon Petrucci's departure.

In Petrucci's absence Levin, Rudess and drummer Mike Portnoy recorded dozens of completely improvised jams, many of which would eventually be released on the 2007 album Spontaneous Combustion under the group name Liquid Trio Experiment. As such, "914" is the only song on the album which did not feature Petrucci. Portnoy alluded to the jams in the liner notes, stating that "if you dig this, there is A LOT more where it came from..."

When Petrucci returned to the studio in November, he wrote and recorded guitar parts for two of these improvisations: "Chewbacca" and "Liquid Dreams". For "Chewbacca" in particular, he took the time to learn several of Rudess's improvised melodies and doubled them on guitar, which in Portnoy's words "(gave) the illusion of written composition".

"Hourglass" is a duet between Petrucci and Rudess in the style of "State of Grace" from the band's first album. According to Petrucci it was written and recorded "in the wee hours with old strings".[4]

"Acid Rain", the album's opening track, was in fact the last song to be written and recorded by the whole band. For this song Petrucci used a seven-string guitar. A riff heard at 4:15 is very similar to the song "Race with Devil on Spanish Highway" by guitarist Al Di Meola, whom Petrucci has cited as an influence.[5] A live version of "Acid Rain" later appeared on Dream Theater's 2001 album Live Scenes from New York. In this version the bass part is played by John Myung of Dream Theater on a six-string bass.

Track listing[edit]

All music composed by Liquid Tension Experiment.

1."Acid Rain"6:36
4."Another Dimension"9:50
5."When the Water Breaks"16:57
7."Liquid Dreams"10:50
Total length:73:55


Chart performance[edit]

Year Chart Position
1999 Billboard Top Internet Albums 8[3]
Billboard Heatseekers 40[3]


  1. ^ a b Huey, Steve. "Liquid Tension Experiment 2 - Liquid Tension Experiment". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 2014-04-17.
  2. ^ Astarita, Glenn. "Liquid Tension Experiment: 2". All About Jazz. Retrieved 2014-04-17.
  3. ^ a b c "Liquid Tension Experiment 2 - Liquid Tension Experiment | Awards". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 2014-04-17.
  4. ^ Liquid Tension Experiment 2 CD edition liner notes.
  5. ^ Wood, James (2013-12-20). "John Petrucci Talks Dream Theater's Along For The Ride Tour, Grammy Nomination and Gear". Guitar World. NewBay Media. Retrieved 2014-05-21.

External links[edit]