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Michael Harris | Defense Mechanizms

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Metal/Punk: Progressive Metal Metal/Punk: Instrumental Metal Moods: Featuring Guitar
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Defense Mechanizms

by Michael Harris

Michael's re-mastered debut is amazing progressive shred guitar that still stands the test of time.
Genre: Metal/Punk: Progressive Metal
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Defense Mechanizms
4:35 album only
2. Tranz-Orbital Schizophrenia
4:54 album only
3. Mind or Heart?
3:48 album only
4. Psychotic Biorhythms
4:45 album only
5. Classical Conditioning
1:32 album only
6. Eminent Domain
5:59 album only
7. Collision Course
3:54 album only
8. Tarantula
4:59 album only
9. Call to Arms
2:31 album only
10. Octavian : Heir to the Conqueror
4:36 album only
11. Wolfgang Lives!
4:11 album only
12. Through the Eyes of Eternity
5:49 album only


Album Notes
Michael Harris is a progressive guitarist & composer with over 15 CDs released worldwide with various groups, including his own solo releases, to his bands Surgeon and Arch Rival. His music is a diversity of styles, ranging from neo shred guitar to amazing prog instrumentals (with jazz and fusion breaks) to acoustic masterpieces. All of Michaels' solo CDs are a "must hear" for any fan of cutting edge guitar music and will impress even the most critical guitar aficionado. On his 1991 debut, "Defense Mechanizms", Michael combines his creative compositions with mind-numbing melodic solos executed with flawless precision.

"Not only is Harris the most spectacularly gifted player I have ever heard, he can write an instrumental that sounds like a song rather than an exercise."
[River City Music News]

"Michael Harris is more than able to provide a hook and therefore is not just a braindead wanker. When the songs ask for it, he provides some superior shredwork, but his solos are not a Shrapnel showcase, rather they speak volumes of what lurks deep down in the soul of this great musician.
[Metal Live]

"This is a great album - probably his best"
[Amazon.com customer]

"All instrumental rock guitar fans must own this CD -- you'll play it so often you may even wear out the laser on your CD player."
[Guitar 9]



to write a review

Mikolaj Furmankiewicz

Michael Harris - Defense Mechanizms
Excellent Harris' "Orchestrate" has stimulated me to write about earlier American's releases. His first solo album was published in 1991 by David T. Chastain's Leviathan Records, and re-released by Michael's IMF Records, all the more it's worth mentioning.

Michael invited two colleagues from Arch Rival to Midtown Studio: Greg Martin (drums) and Gary Rigmaiden (bass). With such a company Mr. Harris provided us instrumental hard'n'heavy music with a dose of progression and improvised parts. The influences of Rush aren't accidental on "Defense Mechanizms", because Michael mentioned them as his heroes among others. Although melodious guitar sequences are unusually arranged, they are also accessible for a listener. I consider it a kind of feat. Michael can play a ballad in the style of Gary Moore ("Mind or Heart?"), but acoustic pieces aren't strange for him as well ("Classical Conditioning"). Here are also the tracks from Arch Rival's demo titled "There Is No Space": "Tarantula" and "Wolfgang Lives!". The latter is a reference to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's "25th Symphony". It was also rearranged by Chris Steberl, but Harris' version is played more roughly. Is it a disadvantage? Not in the least! It's absolutely wonderful performance in which Michael put his spirit. Yeah, Wolfi still lives in heavy music! I can't forget about Gary. His bass lines are very distinct and equally important as in jazz music. That means that Michael isn't a dictator, haha. The cover can't also escape notice. It reflects a wisdom of the Mind and a stupidity of the blind (small letter intended), the light against the dark, the peace against the war. That's a great and inspiring concept by Michael Harris.

I am able to compare Mr. Harris to an(other) musician(s), but... what for? He showed how to combine feelings with virtuosity, and moreover ha has his unique and recognizable style. "Defense Mechanizms" is one of the best album with instrumental guitar music in the beginning of the nineties.