Michael Bernier/Ritchie DeCarlo
Michael Bernier, known for his virtuosity on the Chapman Stick, is also no slouch on the guitar, bass, keyboard, or synth. All coalesce intricately on this third effort with drummer extraordinaire and Percy Jones collaborator Ritchie DeCarlo. Bernier was a founding member of the Stick Men with King Crimson alums Tony Levin and Pat Mastelotto, both of whom make their mark on this driven and atmospheric, space-prog odyssey. DeCarlo and Bernier are monsters, both pushing and pulling the music, completely capable of holding one's attention without superstar guest appearances. But then along comes Ed Mann of Frank Zappa fame with a trippy electronic mallet percussion performance. Matte Henderson, Billy Sherwood, John Wesley play guitar; Dean Pascarella brings Theremin; and Kandy Harris and Madeline Kott add vocals. Fans of Adrian Belew, King Crimson, the Mahavishnu Orchestra, and Allan Holdsworth will all find a place to hang their hat on Strangers.