Fireworks

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William Shatner - 'Ponder The Mystery' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/da/7e/dd/william-shatner-ponder-the-mystery-69-1391558590.jpg Hot

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Not as bad as I feared it was going to be. And no, I didn't write this review whilst wearing my Star Fleet Uniform...

Way back in 1973 my Mum put me in front of the TV to try keep to me quiet. The programme that was on at that time was Star Trek and the episode was called 'Arena'. As I watched I became enraptured by this sci-fi (now classic) show and from there on in I became a life long Trekkie. So as it is with Doctor Who or James Bond, whoever you see in the role of the main character first, is the person you usually see as the ship's Captain/Doctor/Bond forever.

So into my world came James Tiberius Kirk aka William Shatner who is and always will be my Enterprise Captain. Now as other fans of the show will know William Shatner doesn't take himself too seriously and that is why he loves to make music. Over the years this has had a lot of comedy value running through it. So when the Reviews Ed sent me this (he knows of my love for all things Star Trek) I guess he was expecting me to give it a review that said, that this was just another album of Shatner's tongue in cheek stabs at rock music.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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Well to be honest, it is and it isn't because all the music on this CD is written and played by Billy Sherwood (Sherwood Ball etc) which elevates this above being just another simple comedy spectacle and into something completely different. Also having a guest list including Steve Vai, Al Di Meola, Vince Gill, Mick Jones, Rick Wakeman, Edgar Winter, Robby Krieger and many more, makes this a whole different prospect from the earlier William Shatner albums.

Now I don't think most of the Fireworks faithful will rush out to buy this album; in fact this is probably for fan boys/girls only. But a smooth well executed album of light prog might be something some of you would like to hear (if only the once or twice) and with Sherwood reining in most of Shatner's over-the-top-ness, it is for the most part quite a listenable album. There are, however, no real stand out moments on the CD, just a bunch of well played prog songs that have a pleasant sound to all of them, with the added value of William Shatner hamming things up and obviously enjoying himself a lot as he does so.

So in summary, I think this is an album more for the fans of the man himself than anybody else but I have to say it isn't as bad as I feared it was going to be. (And no, I didn't write this review whilst wearing my Star Fleet Uniform...)

Ian Johnson

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