Dream Theater guitarist John Petrucci talked about his solo work, Liquid Tension Experiment, and many more during a recent appearance on Breaking Absolutes.

As you might already know, John Petrucci and former Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy collaborated once again under Liquid Tension Experiment after years, and they released a new album, Liquid Tension Experiment 3, last month.

In the conversation, Petrucci was asked the difference between making his solo album and recording with Liquid Tension Experiment, and he said that he doesn’t want any distractions on his solo work.

While Petrucci was saying that there is nobody inside the room when he was making his solo project, he also pointed out that they are improvising, trading ideas, and interacting with each other during the recordings of LTE3.

Interviewer asked:

“What, for you, distinguishes LTE from your solo work?”

John Petrucci said:

“Probably the biggest thing is that on my solo albums I wrote them both myself. So ‘Suspended Animation’ and ‘Terminal Velocity,’ there’s nobody else in the room when I’m writing them.

It’s just me and my engineer, in this case, as I was writing in real-time, and he was recording stuff. But I’m not collaborating with other musicians, so it’s just whatever is coming out of my head and trying stuff, it’s not like you’re bouncing the idea off with somebody else. That’s the biggest difference, whereas Liquid Tension is collaborative.

We’re in the same room, we’re improvising, we’re trading ideas, you’re handing the baton, you’re interacting, you’re responding, you’re reacting…”

He continued:

“My solo album is not that, it’s just all from my brain and whatever sounds good to me at the moment. It’s also all about the guitar. That might sound selfish but it’s a solo album.

There are no keyboards, there’s no guest artist, there are no vocals, there are no other players. I wanted to give people with both albums a window into what does it sound like when I pick up the guitar and play, what are the things I like to play, what styles do I like to play, what’s my sound, what’s coming out of my creative head…

And so I wanted to be all about that with no other distractions, so it’s really super guitar-focused, and the guitar is taking on all the melodies, and all the solos, it’s not shared by anybody else. Again, very selfish of me but hey, it’s a solo album so I get to do it there.”

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