Originally Posted by darkcherryfade
I always found his timing to be pretty precise. I see what you mean about that "a bit uncertain" thing. At first I thought that too- alot of times on their old stuff, I'd think I hear him miss something, but when I listen to the segment again I notice some of his weird displacements and transitions. He's very jazzy on those albums and he has an interesting way of working around a beat that does sometimes sound a little weird, but there definitely is a very unique, very dynamic, often very embellished groove to it that'll make your head nod in a strangely pleasant way if you can get into it. Not to say his timing is perfect, cause mine sure as hell isn't so I can't judge someone elses. The newer album called "What Doesn't Kill You" has more straightforward rhythms, even in the odd time segments, and I did notice the timing was a hell of a lot tighter. And I always thought he was as solid as Portnoy.
Spurred by your post I actually went digging and found that CD. I found both what I remembered and what you're saying is pretty much right - there's some stuff where I swear the time isn't quite metronomically correct, particularly in the unison sections with big gaps - there's a cymbal crash on the 10th track at about 1:42-44 that definitely sounds out of time with the rest of the band coming back in, things like that. But equally, he's very solid whenever he's in a groove, and I like his washy cymbal sounds and ghost notes a lot more than Portnoy's approach personally.
I did remember why I never listen to this album though. The engineering is horrible! I've recorded better sounding stuff than this, and I suck as an engineer! Also, they really need to get a new singer. This guy sounds like he's doing a very deliberate impression of a fourteen-year-old shouting at his parents about how unfair the world is, complete with nasal wobbling and sounding like he's about to start crying. The rest of the band are pretty good when he shuts up though. Best bit of the album I can find is the start of track #10 (before the vocals start) and the hidden instrumental track at the end.