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 NMB: Innocence & Danger by MORSE, NEAL album cover Studio Album, 2021
4.12 | 76 ratings

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NMB: Innocence & Danger
Neal Morse Symphonic Prog

Review by AlanB

4 stars Innocence and Danger is quite a varied selection of songs, some poppy, some with prog elements, and a couple of full- blown prog epics. Lots of great melodies, as you always get with Neal Morse, and really good vocal harmonies. Stylistically there is more than a hint of the Beatles, Pink Floyd, Yes and other great bands of the past.

There are 10 songs here spread across two CDs. The first CD consists of eight "short" songs between three and eight minutes long. Of these, my personal favourites would be the beautiful Not Afraid Part 1, the Pink Floyd - like The Way It Had To Be, and a very clever progressive version of Bridge Over Troubled Water. The one song I would skip would be Emergence, I just find it a little boring, although as an introduction to Not Afraid Part 1 it does fit in.

On to CD2, and we have two magnificent long songs clocking in at 20 minutes and 30 minutes. Not Afraid Part 2 is the most immediately accessible, but the more I listen to Beyond The Years the more I like it. There is a five minute section halfway through the song, involving Hammond organ and a guitar solo, which is absolutely brilliant and for me is the high spot of the album. Eric Gillette in fact has some wonderful solo spots, Bridge Over Troubled Water is another one that springs to mind.

Finally, for those who are put off by the preachiness of some of Neal Morse's lyrics, you won't be troubled here. There are clearly spiritual references in some songs, but nothing blatantly Christian if that's something that bothers you.

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 Man Out of Time by MANNA / MIRAGE album cover Studio Album, 2021
4.83 | 4 ratings

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Man Out of Time
Manna / Mirage Canterbury Scene

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars A collection of Dave Newhouse songs that contain some of his most complex, well-developed ideas since he went solo. I love that there is so much going on within each song that I pick out entirely new and different things with each listening.

1. "What's the Big Idea?" (4:19) all musicians here seem to be traveling their own solo paths while somehow, amazingly, creating a wonderfully mature weave. (9.5/10)

2. "World Song" (3:49) great drumming beneath Carla Diratz' bluesy singing and the rest of the band's baseline weave. (8.5/10)

3. "In for a Penny" (4:34) great Canterbury slow groove (Fender Rhodes, horns, and bass) over which xylophone, flute, vocalise, and drums create some wonderfully melodic trails. (9/10)

4. "Red Ball Express" (2:56) one of Dave's more free-form, boundary-pushing, almost laughable, hot air balloon ride compositions that remains somehow tethered to the ground by the mellifluous winds. (4.25/5)

5. "4 Steps Back" (10:45) a very well conceived and realized Canterbury style jazz song with nice contributions from strings and Mark Stanley's electric guitar--and a most excellent contribution from drummer Sean Rickman. I love the Muffins-like eight and ninth minutes and then the pugillistic final two minutes. Great editing and mixing to get this one to sound so perfect. (18.75/20)

6. "Fred's Dream" (3:58) opens with a sound, styling, and pacing that is quite reminiscent of STEELY DAN or some other Gary Katz production (Rosie Vela or Love and Money). GREAT melodic and harmonic structure. And so fun to have Fred Frith's wild contribution! (9.5/10)

7. "Silver Age" (4:00) opens like something from HAROLD BUDD and THE COCTEAU TWINS' The Moon and the Melodies 1986 album. Fun! (8.5/10)

8. "These Days" (2:32) beautiful, peaceful keyboard (Fender Rhodes) work over which Rich O'Meara splays his marimba work. (4.75/5)

Total Time 36:53

I am so grateful for Dave's detailed liner notes explaining the etiology of each song: they are so enjoyable to read. The Coronavirus pandemic definitely allowed Dave the time and room to fully and completely develop and rework his ideas into wonderfully complete feeling songs. A-/5 stars; a minor masterpiece of Canterbury style jazz.

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 The Art of Bleeding by WATCH, THE album cover Studio Album, 2021
2.92 | 3 ratings

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The Art of Bleeding
The Watch Neo-Prog

Review by TenYearsAfter

3 stars Twenty years ago I received The Watch first album Ghost as a CD-R to review, this week I received The Watch latest effort The Art Of Bleeding as a WeTransfer to review, the only original member is Simone Rossetti, a lot changed within 20 years, but The Watch still make wonderful 70-77 Genesis inspired music.

About The Art Of Bleeding the band wrote: "After a huge and three years long composing process, for the first time The Watch has ventured into the world of the concept album with five stories that revolve around the idea of cathartic violence. A musical theme developed in various ways to create different atmospheres. A disc to immerse yourself in and let yourself go."

On this new album The Watch presents 8 melodic, harmonic and varied tracks, featuring a wonderful colouring with guitar and keyboards and, last but not least, Simone his passionate vocals with that distinctive Peter Gabriel timbre. The Watch succeeds to blend the unsurpassed 70-77 Genesis sound with some fine own musical ideas, and to keep my attention during the entire album.

Like in the captivating song Red: the freaky synthesizer sound, slightly distorted vocals, powerful Hammond runs and a scary scream halfway create an ominous climate, the final part contains bombastic keyboards and a dynamic rhythm-section. In the dark Hatred Of Wisdom the blend of a raw and propulsive guitar riff and soaring Mellotron violins delivers a compelling musical contrast. And the final track Red Is Deep starts mellow with dreamy keyboards and vocals, then a catchy beat with rock guitar (Peter Gabriel solo evokes), halfway a break with helicopter sound, followed by an eruption with a mid-tempo and pleasant vocals, gradually joined by bombastic keyboards.

More obvious 70-77 Genesis inspired compositions are the dynamic Abendlicht (lush keyboards and a fiery guitar solo), The Fisherman (12-string acoustic guitars and intense Hackett-like volume pedal guitar play), Howl The Stars Down (swelling Hammond sound, beautiful classical guitar, melancholical vocals, and in the end a churchy Hammond) and Black Is Deep (moving guitar work, majestic Mellotron violins, and the distinctive ARP Pro Solist synthesizer sound, this is by far the most Genesis sounding track).

My rating: 3,5 star.

P.s.: The 'Deluxe Edition' contains a Special Edition CD with 7 songs from the The Watch discography, in different versions, chosen by The Watch themselves (A.T.L.A.S, Goddes, Something Wrong, The Border, Sound Of Sirens / Another Life, Scene Of The Crime and Tourist Trap).

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 All the World's a Stage by RUSH album cover Live, 1976
3.85 | 480 ratings

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All the World's a Stage
Rush Heavy Prog

Review by Uruk_hai

3 stars Review #93

It is not the first time that I say this (probably not the last time either) but, with a very few exceptions, I'm not a huge fan of live albums, that is because the songs almost never sound interestingly different to the studio versions so I rather listen to the original album and this is not an exception.

This album was both recorded and published in 1976, right after "2112" (which was the main plate on the table) and it features songs from RUSH's first four albums; LEE, LIFESON and PEART were in their better days and of course the energy on stage is almost palpable but with a lack of improvisation these performances sound just the same as the studio versions and that makes the album only entertaining but not at all indispensable.

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 Trilogy by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.14 | 1691 ratings

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Trilogy
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by A Crimson Mellotron

4 stars 1972 saw Emerson, Lake & Palmer release their third proper studio album, named 'Trilogy', issued on the Island label and produced, as usual, by the band's own Greg Lake. In the year of 'Foxtrot', 'Close to the Edge', 'Thick as A Brick' and 'Octopus', and after releasing two pretty successful and impressive albums in the face of the self-titled debut and 'Tarkus', it seems fair to assess that 'Trilogy' is not a step up, to put it that way. However, any negative connotations such a statement could usher should be quickly abandoned, as this album continues the flamboyant and all-over-the-place stylistic that ELP was going after, and is certainly an excellent example of early prog rock.

Nowadays, when a band releases such a record, we often say it is 'more of the same', usually dismissing it as something non-progressive. Others, nevertheless, do not take sonic similarities between albums as a negative trace, but rather as a sign of a band honing their craft and developing further their own identity. In the case of 'Trilogy', I tend to be more inclined towards the latter case.

From the get-go the listener is bombarded by the keyboard wizardry of Keith Emerson on 'The Endless Enigma, Part 1', a three-part composition that is quite choral and cerebral, while maintaining the lush luster of the previous material by the band; one of the better presentations of ELP. 'From the Beginning' is a gorgeous acoustic piece by Lake, one of the most well-known songs from the power trio; the rest of side one is quite good, as well, with 'Hoedown' becoming a live staple in the years to follow.

Side two is no worse, with just three songs, where we could say the band displays their more adventurous side, with the title track - a great, great song, 'Living Sin', something more different from the band, and one of their 'heavier' songs, and finally 'Abaddon's Bolero', a listening experience only for the most patient, but nevertheless a very recognizable prog rock instrumental.

'Trilogy' might not have the suspense of 'Take a Pebble' or 'Knife-Edge', or the over the top grandiosity of the seven-part 'Tarkus', but it has a charming character of its own, topped by the very excellent performance of each band member, and especially the beautiful singing of Lake, all of which make it a very good addition to anyone's collection of progressive rock.

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 Clockwork Angels by RUSH album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.94 | 1127 ratings

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Clockwork Angels
Rush Heavy Prog

Review by Uruk_hai

3 stars Review #92

"Clockwork angels" was the last studio album of RUSH, it was released in 2012 and it got both good and bad qualifications by the fans and the media. Back in those days, I was obsessed with the seventies records of Prog, so when I heard this album on Grooveshark it was not at all an album that I liked, but here I am almost 10 years later opening my brain and heart to give it a second chance and I have to say I've been unfair with it.

Of course, RUSH never got as good as it was in the seventies, I've been saying that in almost every RUSH review I've written, but "Clockwork angels" (as much as "Snakes and arrows" did) could bring back a little of the original hard rock style that RUSH had in their first albums, I'm not talking about the "A farewell to kings" or "Hemispheres" albums, this record sounds (at least to me) more similar to "Fly by night" and "Caress of steel", when they were a manliy Hard Rock band (with a lot of school of DEEP PURPLE, LED ZEPPELIN and WISHBONE ASH) than a Progressive Rock band but of course: this is not a band of youngsters anymore, the music played in this album was clearly made by mature old men and that absolutely marks a difference.

RUSH is without any doubt one of the most influential Rock bands ever, along its career they recorded lots of albums, some amazing ones, some not that much and I think this is right in the middle. It was a great way to close the catalog of such an important band.

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 A Missing Chromosome by MARS VOLTA, THE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2005
3.49 | 34 ratings

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A Missing Chromosome
The Mars Volta Heavy Prog

Review by Kempokid
Collaborator Prog Metal Team

4 stars While A Missing Chromosome might be little more than a bootleg compilation of b-sides along with the entire Tremulant EP, this is still without a doubt one of the most interesting bonus track collections I've heard. Not only do the tracks sound interesting and varied, but they're able to paint such a profound representation of the band's journey up to this point. The EP tracks at the start show off the post-hardcorish beginnings of the band, before things delve further and further into surreal, experimental territory that showcases the band's ability to craft detailed, evocative soundscapes. Say what you will about Bible and the Breathalyzer, some might consider it an unsuccessful experiment, but it still feels very clear that the band had the ability to move far away from those more immediate, instantly catchy and frenetic tracks from their earlier days. A Plague Upon Your Hissing is especially interesting as well thanks to the fact that it feels like a first draft of one of their most harrowing and amazing songs, Day of the Baphomets, channelling this sense of manic, anxious energy but with a distinctly heavier edge here than on the final version of the track. Frances the Mute also manages to be just as great as most of the album by the same name, so to miss out on such a masterpiece is doing a disservice if you're anything of a Mars Volta fan. So once again, despite the fact that this is a bootleg compilation of songs, it's honestly really worth a listen if you're a fan of the earlier works of the band, extremely effective as a standalone and even more effective as yet another piece of history.

Best tracks: Frances the Mute, Concertina, A Plague Upon Your Hissing

Weakest tracks: Ambuletz

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 Snakes & Arrows by RUSH album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.57 | 1004 ratings

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Snakes & Arrows
Rush Heavy Prog

Review by Uruk_hai

3 stars Review #91

I gave 2 stars to "Grace under pressure" and after that, I did the same with every single RUSH album until "Vapor trails", so it made no sense to write a bunch of reviews about the same band saying exactly the same and rating every album with the same amount of stars, so I just rated the albums without writing any review until now and why did I decide to write a review about "Snakes and arrows"? What was different? Well, for starts I'll give one more star to this album because I find a lot of reminiscenses to RUSH's great albums from the seventies and start of eighties, this album got originality and clearly an improvement in the quality of the compositions.

The style of "Snakes and arrows" is probably not as Heavy and powerful as "Hemispheres" or "Permanent waves" but cat least it has a lot of interesting and fresh songs such as "Spindrift" "Faithless" or "Armor and sword", we can hear a very revitilized band with very original material that doesn't sound as mototonal and boring as the previous 8 or 9 previous albums of the band. RUSH had a tremendous change of style in this record, it is probably their only album after "Signals" that I would ever buy.

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 Back from the Brink by NOVA CASCADE album cover Studio Album, 2021
4.00 | 1 ratings

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Back from the Brink
Nova Cascade Neo-Prog

Review by DamoXt7942
Forum & Site Admin Group Avant/Cross/Neo/Post Teams

— First review of this album —
4 stars Dramatically colourful appearance in this album.

A UK act NOVA CASCADE have come back with their latest opus entitled "Back From The Brink" in September 2021, that is full of magical comfortable ambience seasoned with catchy, melodic movements by a variety of instruments as well. Synthesizer-oriented electronic pop signatures accentuate their imaginative sound structure. And some ethnic vibes sometimes slided all around the creation would sound quite exotic for the audience. Such elements can be heard in the very beginning of the departure "Rectify", slowtempo electro-ambience in a soft and smooth manner. In the first part of the following track "The Minutes After" we can enjoy slightly dissonant but delightful synthesizer plays by Hilborne. Such a glamorous texture makes us happy. The combination of acoustic guitar talks and calm, solemn flute whispers should be our pleasure too. The last percussive run encourages us. "There Is Always A Way" and "Phantom" (guess we could consider the two songs a series of events) consists of magnificent, enthusiastic keyboard theatre. Clearly artistic neo-symphonic touches are here.

"Classroom Keys" reminds us of the similarity to some Japanese Symphonic projects featuring keyboards and wind instruments. The shortest one has a pretty long fruity attack and flavour. It sounds like "The Hill" is one of the most complicated tracks in this album. A bit depressive, tragic atmosphere is around it. Crying guitar is also impressive. The titled longest track involves repetitive but kaleidoscopic ready-steady-go phrases featuring delicate acoustic guitar plays, modest flute vibes, based upon the sincere keyboard background. A mixture of Orientality and vivacity on the last run is pretty gorgeous. We would get immersed in the very last sad but beautiful finish. The last "Long Winter" gives us a cool, cheerful aftertaste, despite the fact the tough, challenging winter under the pandemic situation might be long and chilling.

Cannot recommend this album for ambient-music haters but let me say it sounds just like we are breathing in the fresh air, for Neo-Prog (or Crossover) fans, yes.

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 Gentle Stream by AMAZING, THE album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.18 | 20 ratings

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Gentle Stream
The Amazing Crossover Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars This would be my second favourite album from Sweden's own THE AMAZING featuring guitarist Reine Fiske. I do connect more with 2016's "Ambulance" for that Dream Pop vibe. This one is folky and dreamy too with those warm vocals and Fiske's wondrous guitar leads.

That self titled opener is certainly one of my favourites off this album. Just a beautiful song both instrumentally and vocally. Lots of depth and some organ after 4 minutes when the vocals step aside briefly. A long instrumental break ends it. More organ on the next tune "Flashlight" and the chorus is moving. Thankyou! We even get some guest flute and sax on this one. Fragile vocals on "The Fog" which is folky, "Gone" is excellent especially the guitar and vocals. "Dogs" is a top three again because of the vocals and guitar. This is one I can just drift away to. The closer "When The Colours Change" is one I can relate to here in Canada. Another dreamy tune especially the chorus.

Man I have such a thing for Swedish melancholy, nobody does melancholy like the Swedes.

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 Grace for Drowning by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.19 | 1838 ratings

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Grace for Drowning
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by A Crimson Mellotron

4 stars 'Grace for Drowning', the second solo studio album by progressive rock champion Steven Wilson, was released in the autumn of 2011 on the progressive music label Kscope, as a double disc, clocking in at round eighty-three minutes of playtime. This very interesting album comes after Wilson had released his debut solo effort 'Insurgentes' some three years ago, an experimental rock record full of unusual sounds displaying his various eclectic influences, that somehow did not establish an aesthetic far too different from that of Porcupine Tree, who went on to release their final studio album the very next year, thus allowing Wilson to focus entirely on his personal musical desires and ideas.

In all this context, it also has to be mentioned that this album serves as a part of a trilogy that features Opeth's 'Heritage', released in 2011, as well, an album that has been met with mixed emotions, and Storm Corrosion's self-titled released, which is ultimately Wilson and Akerfeldt focusing on their more ethereal and aloof influences, creating a very elevated and picturesque collage of sonic explorations. And then there is 'Grace for Drowning', a record that is quite different from both albums comprising this trilogy of kind. Another important element that could help us decode the sound of this album has to be the fact that Wilson had been working on the early 70s King Crimson albums at that time, and that influence is seriously prevalent throughout the whole 80-minute album.

A very bold, artistic, and extravagant collection of songs and compositions, that sees Steven Wilson venture into the realm of jazz, fusion, and improvisation, with a wink towards the 70s jazz fusion scene, certainly reminding us not only of King Crimson, but also of Soft Machine, Mahavishnu Orchestra, and maybe even Herbie Hancock and Van der Graaf Generator. To make things even more impressive, Wilson is joined by a stellar lineup of musicians from the progressive rock and fusion scenes, some of which include Jordan Rudess, Pat Mastelotto, Theo Travis, Nick Beggs, Dave Kerzner, Marcus Reuter, Trey Gunn, Steve Hackett, and Tony Levin - this really has to be his first grandiose love letter for the music of the 70s that he is so fond of.

Mind-blowing arrangements, masterful songwriting, pretentious lyrics, and grandiose musicianship on several occasions - these are some of the aspects that this record possesses, alongside the strongly emotive atmosphere that Wilson always manages to create through his music, this record contains very avant-garde numbers like the instrumental 'Sectarian', the bombastic 'Remainder the Black Dog', the ethereal 'Track One', and the big 23-minute fusion suite 'Raider II', certainly of the best achievements for progressive rock in the decade of the 2010s, some very strong songs that still have that touch of Porcupine Tree, and yet sound nothing like the then-extinct band, including 'Deform to Form a Star', 'Postcard', 'Index', and 'Like Dust I Have Cleared From My Eye'.

Excellent from front to back, this is one of the top albums not only in Steven Wilson's catalogue but also of 21st century progressive music, with the British multi-instrumentalist showcasing his seamless ability to shift styles with each new record to some quite impressive results.

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 Surrender of Silence by HACKETT, STEVE album cover Studio Album, 2021
3.95 | 37 ratings

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Surrender of Silence
Steve Hackett Eclectic Prog

Review by prog_traveller!!

4 stars Steve Hackett is very hardworking and creative in pandemic times and after the dreamy and purely acoustic album "Under A Mediterranean Sky" he is now releasing his second and 27th solo work in 2021. On "Surrender Of Silence" you can hear a mixture of Retro Prog , orchestral music and world music. Steve Hackett undertakes a little world tour on this album, which would certainly not be physically easy to do in those times of the pandemic. But Steve Hackett takes listeners around the world. You can hear Indian sounds, the drumming of Africa, a violin from the Balkans or oriental-influenced sounds. In addition, progressive sounds that run through most of the pieces and orchestral passages, gently intoned to bombastic sounding.

The whole thing is underlined by a truly diverse instrumentation. In addition to the more conventional rock instruments, on "Surrender Of Silence" you can also hear instruments that are less at home in rock music such as tar, dutar and dizi. In addition, the orchestral performance already mentioned, fat organ sound, violin, clarinet and saxophone and a guitar that sometimes sounds softly, at other times it rocks out grandiose and almost rampant quickly.

This album sounds incredibly gripping and varied. Of the twenty Steve Hackett works I know, "Surrender Of Silence" has certainly become the most varied record. This is also caused by the singing. Not only Steve Hackett himself can be heard very convincingly on the microphone for me, Nad Sylvan is also involved in the great "The Devil's Cathedral". And for more variety on the vocal side, especially Amanda Lehmann and the singers Durga McBroom and Lorelei McBroom for the title "Wingbeats".

Well, "Surrender Of Silence" certainly doesn't sound uniform, but the eleven tracks in this combination represent a fantastic set of compositions. Rather, this album sounds like new beginning, presented by diversity and optimism. And this applies to the powerful start with "The Obliterati", in which Steve Hackett immediately shows what a great guitarist he still is, right up to the slow and forgiving end of the record "Esperanza". But wait, one number on "Surrender Of Silence" is a bit out of the ordinary in a negative sense. The already mentioned "Wingbeats" sounds catchy, but unfortunately also quite flat. Musical music that this album could have done without. Fortunately, this is the only number that falls short of the other songs on the album.

Conclusion: Steve Hackett's 27th solo album has certainly become one of his most varied records. At the age of 71, Steve Hackett is the only musician from the former "Genesis cosmos" to regularly present his fans with new releases. And this time it was especially worth it with "Surrender Of Silence".

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 God Has Failed by RPWL album cover Studio Album, 2000
3.38 | 158 ratings

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God Has Failed
RPWL Neo-Prog

Review by prog_traveller!!

4 stars Many fragments put together form a single puzzle. Thus, at times, the positive and negative experiences in life, as well as moods, inspire the creation of an artist. In this case four young German guys (after some lineup changes), start making music playing some covers of the first Pink Floyd, and other prog bands. As time went by, the band felt the desire to compose their own music, and so, in 1999 they decided to record their first unreleased album "God Has Failed".

The album is inspired by the death of the father of keyboardist Yogi Lang, and has a good international success. "God Has Failed" is a record that recalls a lot the Floydian sound, but at the same time the band also puts in their own, trying to express their personality in the best possible way. The album opens with "Holy in the Sky", a song that touched me a lot for the beautiful sensations it transmits. Many remember that famous live, which Pink Floyd held behind closed doors in the amphitheater of ancient Pompeii in 1971, on that occasion Pink Floyd also played "Echoes". Those same echoes seem to be present in this RPWL song as well. The melodies become simpler with the following "Who do you think we are" and "Wait Five Years", which turn out to be much more direct and catchy than the previous song (but not unexciting). "In your dreams" and "It's all right" take us back to a bit more complex musical structures, underlining the good technical skills of RPWL. "In your dreams" reminds me very vaguely of "Sorrow" by Pink Floyd, and even Yogi Lang's voice seems to resemble a little bit like David Gilmour's (personal feelings).

There is no shortage of more romantic and solemn pieces such as the splendid "Crazy Laine", a very touching and sweet ballad. The following "Fool" and the majestic "Springs of Fredoom" are also not bad. The album ends with the song of the same name, another melancholy and exciting piece, for a carefree and wonderful album.

In summary, the music of Rpwl, tries to arouse the images that we have stored in the drawers of our mind through music.

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 Into the Woods by HAWKWIND album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.68 | 47 ratings

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Into the Woods
Hawkwind Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by TCat
Forum & Site Admin Group Eclectic / Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

4 stars "Into the Woods", released in 2017, was considered by the band to be a sequel to the previous album "The Machine Stops". By this time, the only long-time members that are still with this band are Dave Brock and Richard Chadwick. Everyone else is among the constantly changing personnel. However, this album is one of the most varied, yet strangely typical, of the later Hawkwind albums. It is full of surprises, fun and plenty of Hawkwind space jams.

It is a bit of a surprise that, with the many bad Hawkwind albums that have been released in the later years, that they can still cull together a decent album like this one. A lot of it has to do with the fact that when the band takes itself less seriously, they seem to have more fun and the result is a better album. The two previously named individuals play pretty much most of the instruments on the album, and that probably helps to streamline and focus their sound. Everyone else involved with the album are more like guests that appear on a few of the tracks and contribute various vocals and instrumentals. This allows Brock and Chadwick to focus on the overall sound of the album.

There is a surprising amount of old-style Hawkwind atmosphere here, especially in the longer jams as in "Into the Woods", "Have You Seen Them?", the wild and wacky "Space Ship Blues" (which features steel guitar, fiddle, harmonica and banjo mixed into the spacey wall of noise) that has this 50's rock n roll/country space vibe, the mystical/mythological vibe of "Dark Nymph" and the best (saved till the last) space jam of all "Magic Mushroom". There are the usual, shorter tracks that attempt to glue it all together, and in this case, they all seem to be related with the use of natural sounds as a background to either spoken word or musical interlude-style melodies, like the organic and acoustic "Darkland" which is as organic sounding as Hawkwind gets as the space effects are still there, just deep in the background. They even take a decent stab at a blues-based hard rocker with ""Magic Scenes" or even make fun of themselves with "Vegan Lunch".

There is a lot here for everyone, but its still all made cohesive by the traditional space/psychedelic style of the band. Even with the variety here, there is still no mistaking that this is Hawkwind for those that are long time fans. There is nothing here that will offend any of the old fans, and there are some songs that might even garner the band some new fans even though many of them might think that some of the band's styles could be a bit strange sounding to their radio-trained ears. Don't worry, there's plenty here to keep the space fans satisfied. This album, if nothing else, still proves that this band that has been around for a long time can still put out a fun and decent album and lovers of the new psychedelic bands will be happy to hear from the band that had a lot of influence on those new groups. This is one of their better ones from their more recent discography.

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 The Pseudo-Scientific Study of Oceanic Neo-Cryptid Zoology by LIGHT IN THE OCEAN, THE album cover Studio Album, 2020
4.06 | 25 ratings

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The Pseudo-Scientific Study of Oceanic Neo-Cryptid Zoology
The Light In The Ocean Eclectic Prog

Review by Rivertree
Special Collaborator PSIKE Team & Band Submissions

4 stars Thoughtful appealing melodies and gentle sound. This is the sophomore album from a band coming out of the US/Minneapolis region. Their debut back in 2019 still was recorded by a four-piece line up. But on this occasion the term band must be relativated, as the core is reduced to multi-instrumentalists Jared Emery and Jacob Ewert. Nearly everthing is written, performed, and recorded by them both. By the way, before discovering THE LIGHT IN THE OCEAN they already have recorded music together under the moniker TOM'S HANK. With more focus on the instrumental execution on this occasion the sound is already offered with a distinctive design, it's definitely worth a try too. Now returning back to 2020, what I'm really fond of the provided variety in style and mood. A step forward, quite a sensation.

Where you certainly can recognize that they are from the States, occasionally I also hear some similarities to Umphrey's McGee. Exemplarily to notice during the extended closing track Hamilton Big Boys which also showcases some violin support by Stephen Decker. The album title, okay, some humour or pun intended? I suspect yet they are bashing a somewhat pseudo-intellectual pretension, elevatedness, we actually are faced with here and there. Concerning the production everything is balanced. Singing voices and technical skills are top notch. The charming relaxed Beat Thief is starting with a looping behaviour, plus external narrative voice support contributed by Michelle Zeto and Rusty Detty.

And then I'm especially stoked about the short super hit Coffee Stains, catchy melody, melancholic guitars, punching bass, simply perfect! Increasing enthusiasm with every new listening session. You can count on me as a new fan. Very inspired compositions, nifty regarding mood and execution, close to a masterpiece. Concerning both masterminds a lot of talent is available here. THE LIGHT IN THE OCEAN have released one new single track in 2021 so far. Hopefully there is coming more soon, and they will be able to keep the level high in that way.

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 The Complete BBC Sessions by FISH album cover Live, 1999
3.18 | 20 ratings

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The Complete BBC Sessions
Fish Neo-Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars This is a collection of two concert recordings from Fish recorded by the BBC, both hailing from early in his solo career: a November 1989 engagement at the London Town and Country Club, and a November 1991 gig in Nottingham.

The first show represented here covers the first disc and the first three tracks of the second - that's why Heart of Lothian pops up twice, and why in the first version you can hear him saying farewell to the London Town and Country Club. At this point in time Fish's first solo album, Vigil In a Wilderness of Mirrors, had been in the can for a bit, having been recorded around the same time as Marillion recorded Seasons End. EMI, not wanting to put the two acts up against each other, had decided to delay the album until the new year, so this would be the first opportunity for fans to hear a good chunk of the new material, as well as one of Fish's earliest solo backing groups tacking Marillion material.

In fact, there's more than that besides: the set starts off with a thunderous cover of Faith Healer by the Sensational Alex Harvey Band; it wouldn't be until Raingods With Zippos that Fish would put out a studio rendition of the track, but the take on it here is pretty damn solid and finds both Fish and band on fine form.

Setting this exception aside, the remaining 13 songs consist of 5 songs from Vigil, 8 from the Marillion back catalogue. A good dose of Marillion was probably inevitable - Fish's solo career had barely begun, and it was his Marillion work which brought most of his fans to the gig.

Still, with over half the tracks on Vigil represented, fans were getting a good sampler of what solo Fish sounded like - and the dual lead guitar lineup allows for a good injection of energy into material old and new. This makes Punch and Judy - one of the more energetic, rock-oriented numbers from Fish's Marillion years - a good pick for the first of the older songs to be included here, forming the end of a thunderous opening salvo of Faith Healer/The Voyeur/Punch and Judy.

There's also an outright funky little breakdown partway through the song, a clever move which allows the band to put their own fun little twist on the song - one which simultaneously doesn't feel very Marillion-ish, but nonetheless feels appropriate to the song. Thus, even when he's dipping into his past here, Fish is not content to just go through the motions but is happy to keep developing his material, something which has remained true over his solo career.

The rest of the set is delivered with similar skill, and setting these Marillion classics in with songs from Vigil really gets across the idea that Fish's first solo album was as natural a development of the sound of Clutching At Straws in its own was as Marillion's Seasons End was - both factions taking things in a somewhat different direction, and as fans we are lucky to live in a timeline where both directions ended up coming about. As of late 1989, there must have been every reason to expect that Fish's solo career would be a storming success.

The second show - consisting of the remainder of the second disc - was widely bootlegged as "There's A Guy Works Down The Chip Shop Swears He's Fish", but it's nice to get an official release for it that actually supports the artist. This comes from nearly two years later, and captures Fish on the Internal Exile tour. Here, the proportion of solo to material to Marillion songs has flipped - there's 3 Marillion songs and 6 Fish solo pieces, Fish being able to draw from the cream of Vigil In a Wilderness of Mirrors and Internal Exile in order to put together a setlist which covers the full span of his career.

The musicianship is more focused here, and the sound feels a bit more cohesive than on Internal Exile itself - an album which, though I have warmed to it over time, was a bit disjointed. Here, Fish seems to be settling into a prog- pop trajectory not too far away from the one which Genesis themselves were exploring at the time, and his band prove adept at setting a diverse range of songs into this mode.

This isn't the only source for live shows from the Vigil and Internal Exile tours, mind - when Fish was striking out in the independent sphere he put out a slew of "official bootleg" albums from these two tours for the sake of getting some cheap product. The first show here is different enough from the one captured on the "Pigpens Birthday" gig - which came from substantially later in the Vigil tour - that it doesn't feel redundant next to it. The second show is more evidently a truncated version of the sort of setlist captured on official bootlegs such as "Uncle Fish and the Crypt Keepers", "Derek Dick and His Amazing Electric Bear", and "For Whom the Bell Tolls" - but it's a nice bonus here. And if you just a one-and-done overview of Fish's live act in his early solo career, this is a pretty good summation of his first two years or so.

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 Magick Brother and Mystic Sister by MAGICK BROTHER AND MYSTIC SISTER album cover Studio Album, 2020
4.03 | 87 ratings

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Magick Brother and Mystic Sister
Magick Brother and Mystic Sister Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Beautiful Scarlet

3 stars 3/5*, great debut.

Surprisingly not to Gong-like. I mean yeah it sounds a bit like Gong but not as much as I expected for a band that has named their album/band/songs after Gongs work. The female vocals are nice, echoey and lovely. The male vocals I find rather meh, with their west coast psych vibe not going well with the more European sound of Magick Brother & Mystic Sister. The songs are all a bit spacey due to the synths coating the tunes in atmosphere. Drums are sparse but this gives more rhythmic attention to the bass which really feels important throughout the album. Guitar strums lackadaisically, at times providing a little lick when required and Flute supplies gentle lead. I like that every song sounds sufficiently alike to make a cohesive album without sounding monotonous and how the songs are rhythmically driven with leads feeling like the basses support.

Overall this is a good album that manages to succeed in not sounding like a clone of any classic band, instead they've achieved an authentic blend that allows to genuinely pass as a forgotten artifact. I would definitely like to see a follow up with expanded songs and no more of the dude singing.

Canterbury Sound Score 3/5 cuz itz too psych n not jazzy riff salad enuf' but sum t stuff on-point so ye 3/5

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 Stern Meissen - Taufrisch by STERN-COMBO MEISSEN (STERN MEISSEN) album cover Studio Album, 1985
1.15 | 13 ratings

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Stern Meissen - Taufrisch
Stern-Combo Meissen (Stern Meissen) Symphonic Prog

Review by Harry Bosch

1 stars "Taufrisch" has nothing to do with the early works of Stern Combo Meißen, no symphonic prog anywhere. Instead, bad zeitgeist pop-junk of the forgettable kind. One of the best examples why so many music listeners hate the 80s. Lousy songwriting that desperately wants to attach itself to the Neue Deutsche Welle, a sound like from a padded cell, pappy drums, flat guitars, that howl out terrible stereotypes. Sometimes creepy vocals to lyrics that a sixth-grader would have been better off hiding in the drawer. Even a children's choir can't save the "Harlekin". Pure Horror - or almost the worst music in the world.

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 Nomen Est Omen by SENMUTH album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Nomen Est Omen
Senmuth Experimental/Post Metal

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams

— First review of this album —
3 stars "Nomen est Omen" is a Latin sentence that means "Your destiny is in your name". This nth Senmuth's album is made of 6 tracks with some circularity made evident also by the titles of the opener and the closer. Let's start: imagine the opening of Pink Floyd's "Obscured by Clouds" made darker and darker, more electronic and with Gilmour's guitar repaced by the low-tone 7-strings guitar. The mood is almost the same for the first half. It's not repetitivity, I'd call it "continuity", like they were parts of a single suite.

In the second half the ethnic element reappears mainly in the percussion. The hypnotic rhythm which closes the album leaves the listener (myself currrently) almost satisfied. In brief, it's a dark ambient suite in Senmuth's usual style but it seems that he was actually giving up to his unusual sudden changes of tonality and ethnic breaks which sometimes jeopardize his work. Not a masterpiece, but surely a good and enjoyable album if you are in the right (dark) mood.

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 Love Beach by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Studio Album, 1978
2.09 | 717 ratings

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Love Beach
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by Antonio Giacomin

3 stars "Love Beach"

Wow, wow, my strong disagreement for the rating this album achieved here! Let´s talk about its reasons

1 ? On the bad side.

Ok, there are songs here that, if sprawled throghout the album would justify a one star rating (would be my first one star review). On the first side of the LP, the first five songs (maybe with "For You" being a little bit better and listeaneble), matches this assessment. Today, I normally skip them.

2 ? On the good side.

Well, it is undeniable that the band performed an excellent version of Joaquim Rodrigo´s "Canario". This was recognized in many reviews here, including low rate ones, and as a consequence we see the first song that elevates album´s quality.

But "Canario" is just a four minutes song, there is a lot more in need to improve "Love Beach". It can be perfectly found in epic "Memoirs Of An Officer And A Gentleman", which occupies the whole side 2 of the LP, but only good reviews recognize this as a good song, and I do include myself in this group. Nice melodies, instrumental interludes; all those good things that makes us appreciate progressive rock are relatively easy to be found there. It is not a "Supper´s Ready" or "Tarkus", but there is absolutely no reason to spoil it.

These two songs gives me a reason to visit frequently "Love Beach", even not being a fan of the band. Then, as a conclusion, 3 stars with no hesitation.

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 Works Vol. 2 by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Studio Album, 1977
2.44 | 665 ratings

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Works Vol. 2
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by Antonio Giacomin

2 stars "Works Vol II"

"Outtakes, oatcakes and fruitcakes". What a nice and appropriate way of describing this album Mr. ExithelLeming chose !

This is an easy album to assess, no difficulty for me in scoring it at two stars, for fans only. As I am not exactly a Emerson,Lake&Palmer fan; listening to it won´t be a very common practice here at home. On the other side of this position, I do perform A LOT of visits for the Rick Wakeman´s 2 stars album, because in this case I am a big fan of his work.

What we have here in "Works Vol 2" ? First of all, take a look in other reviews (Mr Lemming for example), in order to understand the origins of this album. Having done this, you will have no problem in understanding why there is not a lot to expect here (leftovers from other albuns, etc?). Now, let me point out what are my thoughts about it First of all, this album called my attention because of a song named "Tiger In a Spotlight", which is the opener. The problem is that I heard a live version on "In Concert", and I have to agree again with Mr. Lemming that version is MUCH better, it has an energy that does not appear in "Works Vol 2". Even so, for me this is the best song in the album.

What about other songs ? First of all, it is good to see the band visiting lots of different and old styles. If this is a good initiative, where does this album exactly fails ? Well, it happens because there are lots of uninspired compositions here put all together. Many songs are even appreciable, "Watching Over You", for instance. But you EXPECT the next one to be better, and it does not happen. That´s what exists in YES´s "Heaven&Earth", some very good numbers makes the reason for your returning to that album. In the end there is nothing that really hooks you here, no reason to justify a wish you turning to it.

That´s it, folks. If you like "Tiger In A Spotlight", I recommend you go to "In Concert". This one is for fans only.

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 Works Vol. 1 by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Studio Album, 1977
2.94 | 808 ratings

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Works Vol. 1
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by Antonio Giacomin

3 stars "Works Vol I"

First things to say here is that I agree with overall rating, it is a three stars album. On the other hand, I mus comment that? oh, what a BEAST of album!

Best part to be heard here are Greg Lake´s songs. "Ces´t La Vie" and "Closer to The Believing" reaches conditions to be considered masterpieces; and his other ballads here are at least very appreciable. The fourth side of this double LP is excellent as well, "Fanfarre For A Common Man" and "Pirates". Probably, if you consider this a single LP, with sides 2 and 4, ratings here would be divided mainly between 4 and 5 stars.

So, what gets the album down ? Ok, sides 1 and 3. In Carl Palmer songs there is a lot of experiments, instrumental interludes, EXCCELLENT musicianship but I guess there is a lack of melodies that prevents me from really appreciating them. In side 1, the famous Keith Emerson´s Piano Concerto N 1, what happens is that I don´t understand it. What I mean is that I have a lot of difficulties related to classical music. Does this concert pairs a Mozart or Beethoven piano concert ? And does it really matters ?

Some of the times I have the desire of studying music profoundly. I guess and expect it would help me a lot to hear and appreciate classical music. Maybe in this hypothetical future Keith Emerson´s Piano Concerto would be better understood and the rating here could be elevated. I know, this is a beast of band, this is a beast of album. But until there, 3 stars

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 Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso by BANCO DEL MUTUO SOCCORSO album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.30 | 939 ratings

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Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Antonio Giacomin

5 stars "Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso"

Mr. Ian Gillan is an excellent musician. As a singer and front man, he is one of the best; second IMHO only to Mr. Robert Plant. When you hear songs like "Fools" (Fireball), "Place In Line" (Who Do We Think Think We Are), or "Mitzi Dupree" (House Of Blue Light), you see he is able to elevate songs quality; an average one turns into excellent. Few more singers are able to do this; ones like David Coverdale, R.J. Dio and Bruce Dickinson among them.

In the realm of hard rock, a front man is essencial; this is a kind of the style demanding it. But in the progressive rock, it seems that technique rules. You can see introspective guys singing in excellent ways, no screaming, no sexual energy being set at audience disposal. So, we speak less about front man here (does not matter if Deep Purple and Led Zeppelin are in this site; they are prog related), we see less bands where the singer is crucial. Spock´s Beard, Marillion, Genesis, a lot more changed front man and in one way or another, quality was still present. Ok, Ian Anderson is a fantastic front man, but I guess his voice is not above average.

Now that we reached this point, what I woud like to say is that in progressive rock I don´t find exceptional singers as much as in hard rock. One example here is, of course, Jon Anderson, of course, but I don´t know if he is human or an Angel.

Then I found Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso. Everything I want from a front man I found in Francesco Di Giacomo; and I mean that skill of "elevating" song´s quality. He has an operatic way of singing, and although I cannot appreciate opera, the fusion he performed mixing this style with progressive rock was very well performed. The band, of course, has others qualities. The doubled keyboard players (the brothers Nocenzi); and the crucial capacity of writing excellent melodies turns them into one of the "sacred three" most known Italian progressive bands (Le Orme and Premiata Forneria Marconi being the others two).

I won´t talk about details in this album, other reviewers performed very well this task. I only would like to call attention to their singer, the fantastic Francesco di Giacomo, who unfortunately passed away few years ago in an accident, I suppose. He is one of the core reasons for this album (and the others two next), deserving a five star rating.

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 The Slip by NINE INCH NAILS album cover Studio Album, 2008
3.19 | 61 ratings

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The Slip
Nine Inch Nails Crossover Prog

Review by progtime1234567

4 stars The Slip is, in my opinion at least, is one of the best Nine Inch Nails albums. It combines the best of the 90's era, with the more progressive and conceptual elements from the albums With Teeth and Year Zero.

Trent Reznor combined Industrial metal, Industrial rock, electronic music, and electro - industrial on this record to create a diverse sound, but at the same time, the sound is pretty constant, in a good way. The album doesn't ever get boring, mainly because it balances the softer and heavier parts almost perfectly. For instance, the song Lights in the Sky is one of the lightest and most grim Nine Inch Nails songs. Its heavier counterpart, 1,000,00, is one of the heavier songs in the bands catalogue.

Listen to this after you hear Pretty Hate Machine, The Downward Spiral, and The Fragile. Once you hear The Slip, there's a chance that it will put a smile on your face.

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 Dhorimviskha by KOENJI HYAKKEI album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.98 | 77 ratings

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Dhorimviskha
Koenji Hyakkei Zeuhl

Review by DangHeck

5 stars With Fusion-style keyboards during the opener sounding mighty triumphant (like something out of the debut UTOPIA album), we also have the now-classic stylings of Tatsuya YOSHIDA of RUINS, with excellent rhythm, exciting changes and, of course, the tribal near-Kobaïan group vocal chants.

What's always been most refreshing about Koenji Hyakkei is just how much more diverse they are (from their peers and from those who came before), combining what one would expect from a MAGMA release but with more classic Rock tropes (and classic Progressive Rock tropes---see "Levhorn", for instance, which could easily have been writ in part by Rod ARGENT), more Fusion elements than most (again, the keys, but also the bass like on "Djebelaki Zomin") as well as the freedoms that come with a larger ensemble: drums, bass, keyboards, reeds, guitars, with most all players present additionally providing those aforementioned, and excellently executed, group vocalizations.

Progressive Rock of the highest order, especially in this day and age. It does not disappoint. Tasty compositions, polyrhythmic mastery and exciting, virtuosic drama with the interplay between instrument and the musicians themselves.

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 Aphelion by LEPROUS album cover Studio Album, 2021
4.01 | 58 ratings

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Aphelion
Leprous Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Gallifrey

4 stars Listening diary 19th September 2021: Leprous - Aphelion (art rock, 2021)

I don't think I'm going to make my feelings on this concrete just yet - Leprous are definitely a band that needs time and context, and given I've been saying "this is their weakest album yet" with every release since 2013's Coal, only to retract that statement twice, I'll hesitate to state it with full confidence here.

But regardless of whether this is as good as their past material, it's certainly another steady evolution, and Leprous should be commended with their consistent and tasteful evolutions, never moving too much at one time but just enough to keep you wondering where they'll head to next. Ever since Raphael Weinroth-Browne first appeared on cello, they've hinted at a more chamber pop oriented sound, and the strings have finally taken the forefront here - although not in the way I anticipated. Instead of being quaint and subdued, they're bombastic and symphonic, in a Hans Zimmer sort of way, and I whether or not you rate that kind of melodrama is probably going to be what makes or breaks this album for you.

Musically, every song here has something to offer in terms of a great riff or melodic idea. There are far fewer genuine standout moments - the far more uneven Pitfalls[ had much greater highs - but there isn't a single weak track or even really a weak section on the entire album, making it a pretty solid listen, without ever blowing you away. But this can cause some of the tracks to blend into each other, and this is probably the most formulaic Leprous record other than The Congregation (not a criticism, by the way, as long as your formula is good). There isn't a single track that goes by without at least one bombastic string line, at least one angular mathy riff, at least one Supertramp-esque pop hook, at least one skipped beat. The formula isn't bad, but it does make some of the songs hard to tell apart.

And despite singing their praises for their continued evolution, there does seem to be a feeling that Leprous are imitating their imitators a bit here - for a lot of this, you could be mistaken for thinking you're listening to an Agent Fresco or Maraton record, and only occasionally do Leprous flex the kinds of songwriting chops that made them influence those artists in the first place. This is still a fine record from a fine band, but it's probably their most nondescript album yet. But perhaps it's time for Leprous to be nondescript for a bit. After all, it doesn't stop them writing good hooks, of which this album has plenty. I'm not sure I ever expect them to reach the creative heights of some of their early work, but as long as they keep moving and developing, I'm not sure I care. We're blessed to have a band this creative in modern metal, I think they can be forgiven for just writing an album of serviceable pop tunes.

7.6 (4th listen)

Part of my listening diary from my facebook music blog - www.facebook.com/TheExoskeletalJunction

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 Per Un Amico by PREMIATA FORNERIA MARCONI (PFM) album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.40 | 1783 ratings

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Per Un Amico
Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM) Rock Progressivo Italiano

Review by Gallifrey

3 stars Listening diary 18th September 2021: Premiata Forneria Marconi - Per Un Amico (symphonic prog, 1972)

Arguably the defining album of the Rock Progressivo Italiano scene, and you can definitely tell - every one of the hallmarks of that sound is here in abundance, from the dancing keyboards to the impassioned vocals to the long solo sections. And like a lot of RPI, I respect it, but I stop just short of truly liking it. It certainly attempts to put a bit of passion into what was a very pompous and occasionally soulless subgenre, particularly outside of the big names, but the overt instrumental showiness is still there, as is the aversion to anything remotely memorable or catchy. It's well performed and has an endearing conviction to the long-winded jam sessions, but it doesn't resonate with me much beyond surface level.

5.8 (3rd listen)

Part of my listening diary from my facebook music blog - www.facebook.com/TheExoskeletalJunction

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 Scab Dates by MARS VOLTA, THE album cover Live, 2005
2.72 | 111 ratings

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Scab Dates
The Mars Volta Heavy Prog

Review by Kempokid
Collaborator Prog Metal Team

1 stars The idea of letting a band as wildly creative as The Mars Volta go completely all out in a live setting sounds frankly incredible on paper, seeing what sorts of surreal jamming can be done to build upon some of their pre-existing material. Unfortunately, what ends up happening on Scabdates is the band completely losing themselves in the process with these long stretches of meandering nonsense that seems to have a total lack of grounding. This is just an all around awful live album for the most part, not just in terms of the compositions themselves being all over the place, but even in terms of the performances themselves. Nobody here seems to be anywhere near in top form, with the instrumentation feeling very messy and Cedric's vocals making him sound like he's half asleep and just going through the motions. The songs themselves rarely benefit from their extended runtimes either, with the additions feeling extremely redundant for the vast majority of the time and not even really lining up with anything else they try to achieve, feeling entirely disconnected from the core that's being built off. Not entirely worthless since you've got parts 2 and 3 of Cicatriz which do in fact work really well, extending things in a more natural way and even including a bit of David Bowie's Ashes to Ashes, which was a very charming moment, but then it ends up devolving into 20 minutes of weird effects and field recordings and goes back to the negatives. I guess this just shows what happens when a band just gets a bit lost in their own madness and self-indulgence, because this ends up having next to none of the appeal that the band typically would have.

Best tracks: Concertina, Cicatriz part 2 and 3

Weakest tracks: Abrasions Mount the Timpani, Caviglia, Cicatriz part 4

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 Omar Rodriguez by RODRIGUEZ-LOPEZ, OMAR album cover Studio Album, 2005
3.42 | 32 ratings

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Omar Rodriguez
Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Eclectic Prog

Review by Kempokid
Collaborator Prog Metal Team

3 stars Omar Rodriguez is a pretty interesting album to me, as while musically it's honestly not really anything too special for the most part due to essentially being early ideas that would be further fleshed out just a bit down the line, this album has a really unique appeal in terms of further representing the sheer control Omar had when it came to directing the sound of The Mars Volta. Omar here essentially takes his brand of proggy instrumental jamming and then injects some really neat jazziness into it in order to craft something that's both way more full on while also having a bit more of an outwardly quirky feel to it. A lot of these tracks end up feeling like prototypes of what would end up on The Mars Volta's next album, Amputechture, with these more manic, downright surreal elements pushed to the forefront, with a lot of this tightly controlled chaos that was present in their previous stuff joist feeling a bit closer to well, actual chaos. Everything here feels as loose as can be for the most part, often having these mostly repetitive backing rhythms while you hear Omar totally shredding his guitar whilst a saxophone will often also come in to provide some more variety to these jams. This feels best done on Regenbogen Stelen Van Prostituees, which is one constant burst of energy that feels so densely layered with little interjections that phase in and out to give a lot of depth to this glorified jam session. I find that it particularly works well when the instruments often find themselves briefly falling in line with that central repeated melody before breaking away yet again, gives a nice bit of contrast to make the frenetic soloing feel even more crazy and intense.

Despite these praises however, I do still find this album to be a bit lacking in certain areas, with tracks 3 and 4 taking up the majority of the album's runtime and frankly feeling pretty insignificant beyond being a cool experience for Mars Volta fans to hear where some of their ideas started off with Amputechture. Jacob Van Lennepkade is the most repetitive track here, using the bassline that would soon become Viscera Eyes for 17 minutes straight while some more explorative jamming goes on. The issue is that it just doesn't have enough going for it to carry 17 minutes worth of music and wasn't just outdone with Viscera Eyes, but also with Jacob Van Lennepkade II which essentially sounds like a more intense, exciting version of this. It's pretty cool when not compared to its superior versions, but along with both of them existing making this feel much less important to hear, it's also just rather flawed in certain respects with its aforementioned pacing. Vondelpark bij nacht is the worst offender here though, being this lengthy, spacey almost ambient track that has some really interesting sounds going on, but doesn't really do anything with them, sounding like a budget El Ciervo Vulnerado. It's cool for a couple of minutes for sure but 7 minutes dedicated to this meandering kills the flow a bit and also becomes less interesting once you hear what it becomes on Amputechture, since as this album goes on, it almost feels like it's a demo of that album rather than its own thing, and while these tend to still be quite fun, they just end up feeling a bit unimportant at the same time. This is a really cool album for those who are right into The Mars Volta, which is why I'm giving it a reasonably high score despite how much complaining I've been doing, but I feel that otherwise you'd be better off listening to Amputechture or Omar's next 2 solo albums, which take this kind of sound and push it way further. As it stands, this ends up being pretty cool, but also not really an essential listen either.

Best tracks: Regenbogen stelen van prostituees, Spookrijden op het fietspad

Weakest tracks: Jacob Van Lennepkade, Vondelpark bij nacht

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 Obscura by GORGUTS album cover Studio Album, 1998
4.37 | 207 ratings

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Obscura
Gorguts Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Maw The Void

5 stars Gorguts - Obscura

Not joking when I tell you that this is one of the most important records in the history of metal. It is the first record to combine metal with dissonance and avant-garde, all in an incredibly technical manner that was never achieved before in metal or even rock. The musicianship is unparalleled and execution is flawless. Since it has dissonance and avant-garde, it's very inaccessible, so I recommend you to listen it in bits. A full listen could become tedious half-way through. Regardless of inaccessibility, the reward for giving this record a try is unimaginable.

An essential record for metal.

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 Doremi Fasol Latido by HAWKWIND album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.76 | 357 ratings

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Doremi Fasol Latido
Hawkwind Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by DamoXt7942
Forum & Site Admin Group Avant/Cross/Neo/Post Teams

4 stars Dear oldie goodie space rock. Needless to say, HAWKWIND's third album "Doremi Fasol Latido", following their 'creation of fame' "In Search Of Space", pushed themselves to the top runner of Psychedelic Progressive / Space Rock scene. Currently we can hear plenty of Space Rock opuses here and there, that have already been called 'old- fashioned', but mysteriously their spacey atmospheric configuration through this album has still been fresh and fruity. Although their recording, mixing, or producing, sounds like a tad ancient-looking cheesy, cheap movie set, their strong intention for spicy spacey structure can be digested directly and smoothly. We could hear their positivity and creativity via this giant full of rigidity (authentic space rock construction or hard rock appearance) and moderateness (slightly catchy texture). Unshakable HAWKWIND world we can gain experience.

The departure "Brainstorm" involves almost all of their innovative, impressive originality. It's the longest track in this creation but we cannot feel so long nor redundant deeply in it. As if we attended their live on stage as the audience, our inner mind should be merged and unified into their improvised and calculated playing completely. Such old material recorded 50 years ago (!) should not make us feel old-fashioned ... what a mystery. "Lord Of Light", later added as a radio-edited bonus track into the remastered version released in 1996, is one of their catchy, the most acceptable songs. Whilst holding their enthusiasm for space rock stances, they would keep good feeling in the melody lines and rhythmic bases. On the contrary, we can enjoy another alteration of sounds in "Time We Left This World Today" created with repetitive sticky phrases and gradual shifts of their playing style. In the middle part we can get immersed in crazy improvisational battles of  the lead guitar, the bass guitar, the drums, and the synthesizers. "The Watcher" is acoustic, and slightly depressive, but mystically comfortable one. Dave's voices are not so good (because the atmosphere around this track is quiet and simple methinks) but who cares?

"Doremi Fasol Latido" can be thought of as one of progressive rock textbooks that are passed down from generation to generation.

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 Part the Second by MAUDLIN OF THE WELL album cover Studio Album, 2009
4.22 | 721 ratings

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Part the Second
Maudlin Of The Well Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Maw The Void

5 stars Maudlin Of The Well - Part The Second

One of the best comeback albums ever. Maudlin Of The Well released eight years before two connected records, Bath and Leaving Your Body Map, after that the band had no record activity until Part The Second, where they elevated their music and made it far more ambitious, increasing the average song length, while somehow making it more compact. Every song explores multiple ideas, while moving seamlessly from one section to the other. The songs can be very heavy or spacey and atmospheric.

This record is to Post-Metal what Lift Your Skinny Fingers Like Antennae To Heaven is to Post-Rock. It's an essential record to its genre.

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 Flying Colors by FLYING COLORS album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.57 | 246 ratings

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Flying Colors
Flying Colors Prog Related

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Review Nº 463

"Flying Colors" is the eponymous debut studio album of the American super group Flying Colors and was released in 2012. This super group is formed by Mike Portnoy, Neal Morse, Steve Morse, Dave LaRue and Casey McPherson. The formation of the group started with the idea of having several virtuoso musicians and a pop singer joined together to make new fashioned music in the old fashioned way. The idea appeared in 2008 by the executive producer Bill Evans and the album was made with the help of the music producer Peter Collins. Intrigued with the idea and the prospect of working together, this group of musicians signed on to a contract to form a band and record a full length studio album.

So, the line up of the album is Casey McPherson (lead vocals), Steve Morse (lead and rhythm guitar), Neal Morse (vocals and keyboards), Dave LaRue (bass guitar) and Mike Portnoy (vocals, drums and percussion).

"Flying Colors" has eleven tracks. The first track "Blue Ocean" starts with a good and solid bass line by Dave LaRue. Vocalist Casey McPherson shows early that he is able to hold his ground within this so strong cast of musicians. By the other hand Steve Morse supplies the first, of what will be the main characteristic of the album, great melodic solos. The second track "Shoulda Coulda Woulda" represents a heavier rock track where Portnoy and LaRue make an excellent rhythm section. It's a standard hard and heavy rock song that shows the high quality of all musicians. This is the heaviest track on the album and is also probably to standard to my personal taste. The third track "Kayla" begins with a very promising way. Soon, I felt that it was to be a strong track with a great melody and a great vocal line by Casey. The vocal line in the chorus takes us into the catchy territory of American bands like Styx, Kansas and Journey. The fourth track "The Storm" is another hook filled track once more with some rally concise and fine guitar solos. I know this is a very standard rock track but, we are in presence of a very well written, performed and executed piece of music. The fifth track "Forever In A Daze" presents us with a fine interplay between Portnoy and LaRue. The song has a nice and rhythmic passage and the vocals are some of the strongest made on the album. The song has a funky, bluesy and even jazzy line and it has also a great guitar work by Steve Morse. The sixth track "Love Is What I'm Waiting For" is typically a commercial pop rock track. This is a song very influenced by The Beatles and it has also some Queen influences, particularly the guitar work that reminds us Brian May. This is a typical song of the 60's and 70's pop rock genre. The seventh track "Everything Changes" is a typical ballad with acoustic guitar to start and a simple back track of drums and bass to keep things moving. Once more we can see the influence of The Beatles on the song. And, once more, we can see a superior vocal and guitar works on this powerful and beautiful ballad. The eighth track "Better Than Walking Away" is another typical American ballad fashion way that gradually becoming louder and heavier and where its climax appears just before the song ends. This is AOR in its optimum form. The ninth track "All Falls Down" is like "Shoulda Coulda Woulda" a heavy rock song with some fast paced drumming and a great riff. It demonstrates that despite should the fancy take them, then the area of progressive metal can be very well on the album. The tenth track "Fool In My Heart" sees Mike Portnoy taking over the microphone. Once again Neal Morse taking the upper hand in the musical arrangement giving the song a rare blend of Portnoy and Morse sound. The bluesy solo by Steve Morse completes the feel of the song. The eleventh and last track "Infinite Fire" is the epic track on the album, the most progressive of all. It's a very well structured song and where we can see clearly the hand of Neal Morse. The song combines several styles of music, from blues to rock, funk and jazz. It's a perfect way to close this intriguing, surprising and magnificent album.

Conclusion: This is the kind of albums that divide the opinions of the prog heads. For the purists, this is an outrage for the progressive rock. It will annoy some radicals for its pop prog tendencies and modern production. Many may ask how can a group of such esteemed progressive musicians make an album like this, with any overt progressive leanings and choose a pop rock singer. Sincerely, I'm not in this group. I sincerely recommend this album, because probably I had no great expectations with it, in the beginning. "Flying Colors" is the kind of albums that grows as I heard it, and the more I heard it, the more I like it. It's true this isn't properly truly a progressive rock album. Still, I like this album, really. As I wrote before, I can't see any weak points on the album and I sincerely like the vocal work of Casey McPherson. So, and concluding, if you're looking for some sort of Transatlantic, Dream Theater or Deep Purple stuff here, you are wrong, and barring the last track "Infinite Fire" this may well not be the album you are looking for. However, if you search for a catchy and crafted melodic rock album with more than just a hint of progressive music, you're in the right place here. It captures your fancy and you willn't give a misused your money and time spent with it.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

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 Chameleon Shapeshifter by KALUGIN, ANTONY album cover Studio Album, 2021
4.69 | 7 ratings

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Chameleon Shapeshifter
Antony Kalugin Symphonic Prog

Review by CAERLLYSI

5 stars the final chapter of the Magical AKP Trilogy - Chameleon Shapeshifter.

The music maestro has used the lengthy periods of isolation to create some of the most exciting and uplifting progressive symphonic art rock of recent times......

Marshmallow Moondust and Stella Gardener have been heralded by Kalugin's peers as groundbreaking musical statements and website reviews have been overwhelming. Antony played all instruments himself on both and whenever unable to use live he excelled with his software and production skills to enrich.

After completing the demo recordings which thankfully coincided with the first proper ray of light in the battle to retain our freedom and as a celebration Antony wanted to champion this by bringing on board his own musicians to make the album totally LIVE so drums, saxophone and flute along with additional guitar and bass make this totally MAGNIFICENT in its whole. Musically all genres are touched and crafted beautifully by Kalugin and the symphonic cinematic soundtrack and landscapes awash with gorgeous melodies make this a delicious listening experience and ensure this music trilogy will remain forever in the listeners memory. Happy Days

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 Love's Lost Property by THREE COLOURS DARK album cover Studio Album, 2021
4.35 | 3 ratings

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Love's Lost Property
Three Colours Dark Crossover Prog

Review by Steve Conrad

3 stars Restrained, Aching, Wistful

Two Veteran Musical Compadres Brood About Love

In this achingly lovely sophomore release by Welsh duo THREE COLOURS DARK comprised of veteran musicians Rachel Cohen (vocals) and keyboardist Jonathan Edwards- both with extensive musical resumes- lyrically and musically address the vagaries of 'love' in its many guises.

Classical Greek thought identified eight kinds or varieties of love- which means to me that this is a complex subject, and of course even a few moments' thought might bring to mind a wide variety of songs about love. "Burning Love". "Love is Strange". "Love is Like Oxygen". "Love Stinks". And so on.

CAN Love Be Lost?

And if so, where did it go? Is love like energy- it never diminishes yet takes different forms? "Where is the Love?". These are the concepts that propel the music on this brooding, melodic, lush album- and I take it on faith (since I didn't have access to the lyrics) that the parts I COULD understand dealt in rainbow fashion with a number of facets of love and relationships.

Music

Most striking on this album is the sense of brooding wistfulness, vulnerability, and sensitivity. Rachel's voice is clear, pure, and straightforward. No vocal theatrics or burnishments. No harshnesses or gimmicks. I was at times reminded of early Clannad.

Jonathan's keyboards provide stately, lush, mystic walls of synths, organ, piano, and keyboard effects, all of which are prominently featured.

(Almost) third member Tim Hamill, who adds acoustic and electric guitars, bass, and programed drums, plus a variety of guest musicians utilizing oboe, saxophone, guitar, violin, and additional vocals embroider and add depth to the core songwriting skills of Cohen and Edwards.

Music Takes Time

That is to say, the music unfolds at a leisurely, measured pace. There is never a sense of hurry. The mood does intensify at times, yet emotions are subtle and require careful listening to fully grasp. I was reminded of an artist I knew years ago who worked closely, carefully, nearly obsessively on her pieces, and was challenged by an instructor to LET LOOSE, to THINK BIG and to ENLARGE THE SCOPE.

I had the impression THREE COLOURS DARK could stand some of that challenge. Each track is lovely and haunting, and at times I longed for some fire and less restraint- something I heard only in "Eye For An Eye", where guitars get a little heavier, there's a bit more boldness, and intensity is a bit more obvious.

Sum It Up

Absolutely gorgeous, thoughtful, restrained crossover progressive rock music (although there were times I wondered about this designation), with carefully and meticulously constructed compositions done with great care and skill. The chief caveats for me would be that all-in-all I wanted a bit more fire and abandon, and perhaps more overall variety, since there was a kind of similarity in the feel, the sound, and the atmosphere in each track.

My Rating

Three point five moody, tender stars meaning "Good" to "Excellent" as an addition to your progressive music collection.

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 Come Taste the Band by DEEP PURPLE album cover Studio Album, 1975
3.22 | 533 ratings

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Come Taste the Band
Deep Purple Proto-Prog

Review by TCat
Forum & Site Admin Group Eclectic / Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

3 stars Prior to the release of "Come Taste the Band", Deep Purple had lost their iconic vocalist Ian Gillan a few years ago and had added the soulful vocals of David Coverdale, which basically changed the classic DP sound. However, sales were still positive and DP's management pushed for more tours and more albums. The band was getting worn out and Ritchie Blackmore hated the new sound, especially the line-up's 2nd album "Stormbringer". He hated the funky and soulful vibe the music had taken on so much that he left the band. Only two members, Jon Lord and Ian Paice remained from the famous Mark II line-up, and now they found themselves missing a lead guitarist.

Everyone know the story, and Tommy Bolin was hired to replace Blackmore, who had gone on to form Blackmore's Rainbow. Bolin had a background of having played for The James Gang and had released a solo album, so he was somewhat known. However, his guitar style was completely different. Coverdale and Hughes were now more free than ever to pursue their different sound for the band, and both of them were surprisingly open to allowing Bolin to help in writing the songs. Bolin was afraid that he wouldn't be able to handle the famous Blackmore solos, so he was allowed to make a huge contribution to the sound. Hence, the unique sound of this record among the other Deep Purple albums.

Many would argue (and still do) that this is not really a DP album. But, the fact is, it is a DP album. This album is a direct result of where the band was headed. The songs are heavy, lyrically driven, and, thanks to both Coverdale and Hughes, more soulful, funky and radio friendly. For me, the first side of the album is full of forgettable tracks, with nothing standing out much except for a cool, funky section of "Gettin' Tighter", which ends up being too short with the funkiness being quickly lost in Hughes smothering vocals. Coverdale and Hughes both had the same styles of voice, so other than that small section, even with two lead singers, the songs sound way too similar and nothing seems to pull the listener in.

Nothing much changes on the first half of the 2nd side of the album, it's just more of the same style, same smothering vocals and not enough in the instrumental area that would capture the love of the earlier fans. It's not until you get to the last two tracks that anything interesting happens. The first highlight comes in the "melody" track which still doesn't sound much like the DP of previous years, however, it is an excellent unique style that stands out from the rest of the repressed sound of the rest of the album. The best part is the 2nd part of the Melody which is called "Owed to G", an instrumental track that shows off Bolin's own playing and writing style, proving that it is much different from Blackmore's, and also proves that maybe without Coverdale and Hughes influence, Bolin really needed to be in a different band. The final track "You Keep on Moving" is also very good, with great hooks and an overall sound that stands out from the rest of the album.

None of the music on this album is progressive, but the last two tracks are good enough to raise this album up one star above the previous album "Stormbringer" which only had a nice looking cover going for it. Yes, CTtB ended up getting great sales at the beginning, but soon took a nosedive and ended up being one of DP's lesser known albums, with no singles that performed well and with sales dropping quickly. Bolin was correct in saying that he wouldn't be able to handle Blackmore's solos on the older songs that fans demanded be played in concert, and fans would "boo" when he messed them up. This whole thing was unfair for Bolin because he was a good enough guitarist, but he had his own style that was very unlike Blackmore's. Also, a lot of the blame can be put on Bolin's impairment due to his reliance on drug use, which would end up taking his life after he released his 2nd solo album soon after CTtB was released. The band ended up breaking up after this and management said they would not play together as DP again. It would be almost 10 years before DP would reappear, reuniting under the classic Mark II line-up again, and prove that this is really what the fans wanted.

In the meantime, you have this weak album that has two great tracks on it, but sounds nothing like the DP from before, and because of this, the fans and the band have basically disowned it. However, in my opinion, it is a little bit better than "Stormbringer", but still a long ways from the excellent material that was produced during the Mark II phase. It's a sad story and one that could have had a better ending if it had been released under a different name, but the public and management wanted the name for recognition. The album is not a complete throwaway, but it's not one that anyone should search high and low for. 3 stars.

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 The Persistence by KINGCROW album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.90 | 94 ratings

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The Persistence
Kingcrow Progressive Metal

Review by Gallifrey

4 stars Listening diary 16th September, 2021: Kingcrow - The Persistence (progressive metal, 2018)

This could quite easily be my favourite album from Kingcrow, even though it doesn't deviate at all from the formula they've been playing for a few albums now. I always seem to get these guys entangled with Polish group Votum in my head - they have the same mix of prog, goth and metal that owes a lot to Riverside and Tool, to the point where I had to keep reminding myself that this wasn't a Votum album. Kingcrow have always been the weaker of the two to me, but given Votum's mediocre latest effort, this signals a bit of a change of the guard. For the most part, this is exciting, energetic, melodic, and avoids the Riverside clone trappings of some of their previous albums.

7.6 (4th listen)

Part of my listening diary from my facebook music blog - www.facebook.com/TheExoskeletalJunction

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 The Serpent's Egg by DEAD CAN DANCE album cover Studio Album, 1988
3.88 | 163 ratings

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The Serpent's Egg
Dead Can Dance Prog Folk

Review by Gallifrey

4 stars Listening diary 23rd January 2021: Dead Can Dance - The Serpent's Egg (neoclassical darkwave, 1988)

This has become my favourite Dead Can Dance album, although that's probably only because it's the one I've spent the most time with. They're a band that create such outstanding moods but can be difficult to get into beyond a surface level background music kind of enjoyment. This one, probably aided by its utterly magnificent opener and the frequent allusions to Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares has grown on me from those initial impressions. It does fall off a bit after its introduction and its length means that the less remarkable second half goes by before you've even noticed it, but it has a great balance of mood and songwriting overall.

7.1 (6th listen)

Part of my listening diary from my facebook music blog - www.facebook.com/TheExoskeletalJunction

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 Reviviscence by TIME MACHINE album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.45 | 19 ratings

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Reviviscence
Time Machine Progressive Metal

Review by lukretio

2 stars The fourth (and to date last) full-length album of Italian prog-metallers Time Machine continues the trilogy based on Valerio Evangelisti's book "Cherudek" that the band had started with their 2001's LP Evil. Released in 2004, Reviviscence also continues Time Machine's tradition of frequent personnel changes between albums. Of the line-up that had recorded Evil, only Lorenzo Dehò (bass) and Gianluca Ferro (guitars) remain. They are joined on the new record by drummer Luca Sigfrido Percich, guitarist Gianluca Galli and vocalist Marco Sivo, all coming from fairly unknown local metal bands. Reviviscence is also characterized by several guest spots, including solos by both Angra's guitarists Kiko Loureiro and Rafael Bittencourt, and a keyboard solo by Fabio Ribeiro (Shaman, Andre Matos).

Stylistically, Reviviscence can be described as a cross between Time Machine's masterpiece Eternity Ends from 1998 and their previous record Evil from 2001. Of the latter, the new LP retains the taste for a modern approach to progressive/power music, based on beefy, groovy guitar riffs, futuristic keyboard samples, and powerfully dark melodies that remind me of bands like Kamelot. But there are also echoes of Eternity Ends on Reviviscence, partly because Marco Sivo's voice has the same high-pitch tone and mellifluous timbre of Nick Fortarezza, who had sung on the 1998's album, and partly because of the Angra influences that were very prominent on Eternity Ends and return, albeit less conspicuously, on the new album.

This description may sound exciting, considering how Eternity Ends and Evil are both very strong records in their own way. Alas, despite its best intentions, Reviviscence is a fairly disappointing release, mostly because a lot of the material feels very much run of the mill and uninspired. Melodically, there are very few moments of this album that stand out, even after repeated listens, and the whole album flows away without making much of an impression. The material in the second-half of the record is somewhat stronger, also thanks to some inspired guitar playing and a touch of colour given by unusual instrumentation (the sitar on "Tears of Jerusalem") and samples (the George W Bush's speech at the end of "Grains of Sand"), but it really does not go beyond the average level.

Another weakness of this record is the quality of the line-up, which I think is somewhat inferior to those of the previous two records, at least in the vocal department (in a few places, Sivo's vocals come across as tentative and fairly generic) and the drumming. On the other hand, the band has gained something in terms of guitar firepower. Both Galli and Ferro are excellent guitarists and the album contains some interesting and exciting guitar playing and solos ("Grains of Sand", "Tears of Jerusalem", "Seeds of Revolution").

Unfortunately, the production is also a step-down compared to the band's previous two records. The album does sound really poor for something recorded and produced in 2004. It is loud and noisy, with a terrible guitar and drum sound and an unbalanced mix that puts the keyboards and samples all over the place and on top of the other instruments. This truly detracts from the listening experience, especially in songs where one can hardly tell apart what's being played as everything sounds like an indistinguishable mush (the choruses on the title-track and "Angel Lucifer").

Overall, Reviviscence is a mixed bag of fairly uninspired and badly produced material. There is some saving grace in the guitar work, especially in the solos, but it is too little to lift the album beyond the "so-so" level. It is a pity because Time Machine have been a really interesting and exciting band in the Italian and European progressive metal scene, and this is a rather unfortunate way to conclude their discography. We can only hope that Dehò may at some point in the future decide to revive his old band and conclude the Evangelisti's trilogy with a better album than this one. Until then, I think I will stick to Eternity Ends and Evil.

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 XM  by PORCUPINE TREE album cover Live, 2003
3.70 | 154 ratings

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XM
Porcupine Tree Heavy Prog

Review by Gallifrey

4 stars Listening diary 21st January, 2021: Porcupine Tree - XM (progressive rock, 2003)

Of all the (far too many) live albums Porcupine Tree did (and are still doing, thanks to their new bandcamp), this is probably one of the most pointless. It's not even a live album, but a live-in-studio performance, with material almost all from one album. It's almost the definition of a fan club release, but I still absolutely adore this material, so I still enjoy it. I will say that I love the version of "Gravity Eyelids" here in particular, with Steven's voice being a bit more vulnerable. But on the other end, they've never done "Slave Called Shiver" well on a live recording - it just doesn't work without the robot voice.

7.3 (2nd listen)

Part of my listening diary from my facebook music blog - www.facebook.com/TheExoskeletalJunction

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 Wazoo by ZAPPA, FRANK album cover Live, 2007
4.05 | 80 ratings

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Wazoo
Frank Zappa RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars 3.5 stars. I wished I liked this more and my rating reflects my enjoyment level more than anything else. Zappa and his big band of what 20 musicians or so. Tons of horns which I'm not into. He did an eight night tour with this being the final one on September 24th 1972. And in Boston. There is a lot of noodling and you could call this Avant Jazz for the most part. A lot of difficult music which while impressive it just doesn't do much for me at all. Frank is in great form talking to the audience and sharing stuff. I've spent a lot of time with this one hoping it would grow on me but again this is a tough listen and I admit Avant Jazz is very much more miss than hit in my world. We get an hour and a half of music over two discs and this is not for the faint of heart.

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 Sia by SOLSTICE album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.95 | 11 ratings

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Sia
Solstice Neo-Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Honorary Reviewer

4 stars Surely here is a band who need no introduction whatsoever, as when it came to prog in the Eighties these were one of THE bands. I was really late to the party, not hearing 1984's 'Silent Dance' until it was reissued by Progressive Records in 1991, and immediately fell in love with both that and the next album, 'New Life'. Solstice built up a huge following in the live scene in the UK, but they never really had the stability and release schedule for them to establish themselves on a wider basis, and I am sure there are many of us who wish the breaks had gone their way as they always deserved to be much bigger. Their last album prior to this one was 2013's 'Prophecy', and apart from new singer Jess Holland, this features the same line-up of Andy Glass (guitar, vocals), Jenny Newman (violin), Pete Hemsley (drums), Robin Phillips (bass) and Steven McDaniel (keyboards, vocals). Solstice have always been a band who have used female lead vocals and violin, something which has always made them stand out from others in the scene, and on this album, they have moved at times into a folkier side.

Songs such as "Long Gone" are simply beautiful, with the concentration on Jess's beautiful vocals and Andy's acoustic guitar, with some delicate accordion-style keyboards. When Jenny's violin comes in over the top of the harmonies, it adds a touch of beauty which takes this to a whole new level. The album starts with one of its most overtly progressive tracks in "Shout", where the layered keyboards and violin fool us as we jump into something which is quite funky in some respects, allowing a groove to build right from the beginning. This has always been Andy's band, but he acts more as an arranger than a diva, only bringing himself forward when it is right for the music, yet he can more often be found in the background. This is the longest song on the album, at more than 10 minutes, yet it passes by incredibly quickly as the listener is drawn into some wonderfully melodic music.

Jess's vocals are pure and clear, Jenny has the wonderfully folky style one expects from someone who has developed her style in that sphere, adapting it to prog but never moving too far away from the roots, then Andy adds in his pieces when the time is right and together the trio provide the melody, with keyboards often in a support role, as are the rhythm section. However, one needs to pay close attention to Pete, Robert, and Steven, as they are often laying down complex lines and rhythms which the listener may not always pick up on.

The whole album is a delight, and it is something of a surprise to find they have revisited a track from their debut all those years ago. Back then Andy was accompanied by Sandy Leigh, Marc Elton, Mark Hawkins and Martin Wright, and while I must admit I am not always a fan of bands going back to music they had previously released, this has been given a totally fresh lease of life some 36 years on from when it was originally recorded. It fits in perfectly with the rest of the album and brought a smile to the face of old proggers like me. I see Solstice are touring heavily in the UK, and as I don't think they will ever make it down to Aotearoa, let's hope we get another album from them soon.

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 5 by SCHNELLERTOLLERMEIER album cover Studio Album, 2020
4.04 | 4 ratings

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5
Schnellertollermeier RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Honorary Reviewer

4 stars As one may be able to guess from the title, Schnellertollermeier are back with their fifth album, following the musical path for which they have become known. Andi Schnellmann (electric bass, electric guitar on "Animate Become"), Manuel Troller (electric guitars) and David Meier (drums & percussion) are experimental musicians, who on this album are also using space as a deliberate instrument. There are times when it seems the musicians are recreating the sound of industrial machinery, taking themselves far away from what many people believe to be melodic music, instead taking the listener into places which allows them to think about what is happening in their ears, and asks them to go on a journey.

Each member of the band is tasked with driving the music at different times, always in harmony (or sometimes deliberate disharmony) with the others. Numbers such as "A.o.E.i.n.E.o.A" are immensely powerful, yet at the same time there is little in terms of note density as the guys allow our emotions and some metallic sounds to move us in different directions. This is not easy listening play in the background type of music, but rather it is something which needs to be played on headphones with close attention to everything that is going on. This is far more about the interaction of notes and what they are doing as they resonate as opposed to any individual musician showing off and expecting the listener to be impressed with the skill on show. At times they are highly percussive, at others it is far more languorous, but always there is that space being used as an additional instrument ? this is so removed from compression as to be on a different musical planet altogether. There is room here for everything to breathe, even if that breathing sounds like it is taking place on a production line in a sterile factory somewhere. Highly experimental, definitely interesting.

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 A Trace of Memory by SANGUINE HUM album cover Studio Album, 2020
4.07 | 76 ratings

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A Trace of Memory
Sanguine Hum Neo-Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Honorary Reviewer

4 stars The core trio of Joff Winks (guitar, vocals, piano, string arrangements), Matt Baber (keyboards, synths, drums, field recordings) and Brad Waissman (bass, Chapman Stick, upright electric bass) are back with their fifth studio album, alongside drummers Paul Mallyon and Andrew Booker, who have both previously been involved as well. I was impressed with their last release, 2018's 'Now We Have Power', and was looking forward to hearing this one and I was not going to be disappointed. What makes this album work so very well indeed is the quality of the arrangements, with the guys somehow making their instruments seem much more than they are, with the bass tone, in particular, being incredibly wide and permeating through the songs. This gives the guys a wonderful framework to build on, so the drums hang off the side doing their thing while Joff and Matt twist through multiple styles and phases.

Nowhere is this truer than on the epic "The Yellow Ship", which is more than 13 minutes long. In this we have some wonderful staccato moments, others where it is way more relaxed and drawn out, with the melodic lead switching throughout. There is a delicacy within their music, a restraint which seems almost fragile on the surface, and it is only as the songs progress that one can hear the strength within. "Pyramids" is a precious thing which sounds almost as if it is going to disappear with the acoustic guitar and keyboards providing just the right amount of support for the vocals, and it is only when the bass and drums come in that the listener starts to realise the power. This is one of the highlights of the album, really bringing us deep inside and allowing us to understand what is going on.

Someone asked me yesterday if people undertook active listening anymore, and although I replied in the affirmative, I do know there are many who no longer do so. This is an album which really benefits from the listener paying close attention, as otherwise much of what they are doing will wash right over, so when you have the time to really listen, sit and play this while concentrating on what is going on and you will be surprised just how much there is in there for you to discover. There is a beauty within this which is an absolute delight, and while not the most in your face progressive rock you will come across, it is certainly worth investigating.

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 I Am a Stranger in the Earth by ROZMAINSKY & MIKHAYLOV PROJECT album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.96 | 20 ratings

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I Am a Stranger in the Earth
Rozmainsky & Mikhaylov Project Eclectic Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Honorary Reviewer

4 stars Here we have the second studio album from Ivan Rozmainsky (keyboards, Roz Vitalis) and Vladimir Mikhaylov (guitars, percussion, drill, samples, Enine, Algabas). As with their debut album, 2017's 'For The Light', they are again joined by clarinettist Leonid Perevalov (Yojo, Pustotsvet) and drummer Yurii Groiser, and this time have utilised bassist Max Lokosov as well as some guests. I have long been a fan of Roz Vitalis, who are surely one of the most consistent and innovative bands to come out of Russia, and RMP allows Ivan to work with a melodic partner to take his modern classically inspired music into far more experimental and innovative directions.

There are times when the musical threads feel somewhat disconnected and unconnected, and it takes time for the brain to fathom what is really going on. The band themselves describe this album as almost instrumental (with rare female voices) progressive rock combining avant-prog, space-rock, psychedelic rock and improvisational music, yet while all that is true there are also elements of free jazz and even some RIO. Ivan produces a melodic base, often with piano, while Vladimir sometimes follows or goes off at complete tangents, Leonid may or may not be involved at all, while Yurii follows a path all on his own and Max tries to provide a link between them all. There are times when the music is complex in its arrangement that it feels like it has been scored for a modern orchestra and others when it feels so free as musicians go where they feel the need to explore. There is a great deal of space within the music, allowing everyone to come together or move apart as the need arises, and the listener is never sure where they are going to be taken except that the journey is definitely going to be worthwhile.

Yet another extremely enjoyable progressive album from Russia, and I look forward to the next one with great interest.

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 En Annan Varld by AGUSA album cover Studio Album, 2021
3.93 | 21 ratings

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En Annan Varld
Agusa Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by TenYearsAfter

3 stars Agusa is a new Swedish four piece formation that started in 2013, the name is derived from the place where the band did jam sessions. Late 2013 Agusa went into the studio to record the debut album entitled Högtid, released in early 2014. During the winter drummer Dag Strömkvist decided to leave and to travel around India for a while. After a number of auditions Tim Wallander joined the band, and in the beginning of 2015 Jenny Puertas on flute became the newest Agusa member. In 2015 Agusa released the second effort entitled Två, followed by Agusa in 2017, and a serie of live albums between 2016 and 2018. And now, anno 2021, Agusa has released a new album named En Annan Värld featuring two epic instrumental compositions.

Sagobrus (25:01) : This longest track is in the 24-carat symphonic rock tradition: dynamic and varied, with lots of changing atmosperes and breaks, and coloured by a wide range of instruments. The one moment dreamy with twanging acoustic guitar and soaring flute (strongly reminding me of fellow Swedish band Anglagard) or a slow rhythm featuring a Hammond organ solo and a fiery, distorted guitar, turning in a sumptuous climate. The other moment an accelaration with Jethro Tull-like flute traverse, and a tight beat. Or from dreamy with churchy Hammond sound and moving guitar solo to atmospheric with organ arpeggios, slowly turning into more dynamic and bombastic, embellished with pleasant flute, organ and guitar work (again reminding me of Anglagard but also Camel). My highlight is halfway: a mid-tempo with a long and swirling solo on Hammond organ (evoking Peter Bardens from Camel), and strong rhythm-section, topped with a wah-wah drenched guitar sound. The shifting moods are very flowing and the band succeeds to keep my attention, bravo!

Uppenbarelser (21:12) : This other epic composition strongly differs from the previous one. First the emphasis is on ambient and atmospheric music featuring sound collages, soaring flute and organ, gradually a slow rhythm, turning into more dynamic with sensitive electric guitar leads. Then back to mellow with soaring flute, a mellow sounding Hammond joins, followed by fragile howling electric guitar runs, powerful bass work, and a short flute solo. Halfway the mood shifts to psychedelic, like early Pink Floyd, with a fiery and biting electric guitar solo, and dreamy organ play, pretty hypnotizing and compelling. In the final part (more sounding like the first composition) first dreamy with flute, then turning into bombastic with organ, guitar and flute (again Anglagard hints), and finally back to dreamy with flute and tender acoustic guitar. A pleasant variety.

My rating: 3,5 star.

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 Interior City by GABRIEL CONSTRUCT, THE album cover Studio Album, 2013
4.14 | 17 ratings

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Interior City
The Gabriel Construct Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Gallifrey

4 stars Listening diary 13th September, 2021: The Gabriel Construct - Interior City (experimental/progressive rock/metal, 2013)

A really creative and unique album, but one you're probably only going to enjoy if you aren't too fussed about good production. This is incredibly rough, and not always in an intentional way, but it houses some really left- field and unusual pieces of music. Sitting somewhere between progressive metal and the more eclectic sides of avant-prog and even rock in opposition, this flies all over the place in terms of genre and mood. The performances are raw but varied, and the melodies and musical motifs are bizarrely catchy, even though I would never describe this as accessible. It definitely is a far cry from the ultra polished and mechanical sounds of most modern prog metal, and to me it carries on the spirit of a band like Taal, or even Kayo Dot's more progressive moments. The production and performances will always give this album a ceiling of enjoyment for me, but in spite of its obvious flaws it's definitely a very interesting album.

7.1 (7th listen)

Part of my listening diary from my facebook music blog - www.facebook.com/TheExoskeletalJunction

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 Eternity Ends by TIME MACHINE album cover Studio Album, 1998
4.04 | 17 ratings

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Eternity Ends
Time Machine Progressive Metal

Review by lukretio

4 stars Eternity Ends is the second full-length release by Italian prog-metallers Time Machine. It came out in 1998, just one year after the band had released its fourth recording, the EP Shades of Time. The band's line-up underwent some changes in the space between the EP and Eternity Ends, which is not unusual for Time Machine, considering how they changed singer on every single album they ever released! Long-time guitar player Ivan Oggioni stepped down and was not replaced on the new album. Vocalist Morby also left the band, and was replaced by Nick Fortarezza. The rest of the line-up is unchanged, with Nick Rossetti on drums, Joe Taccone on guitars, and mastermind Lorenzo Dehó on bass. Stefano Della Giustina is also listed as a full-time band member on the record, after having featured as a guest on the 1997's EP. Alessandro de Berti (from Italian prog-metallers Enrico VIII) guests by contributing acoustic guitars.

Eternity Ends is hands down the best album Time Machine have released in their entire career. Already the previous EP Shades of Time had shown that the band had found a more convincing and mature way to express their musical ambitions, leaving behind the complex and over-fragmented sound of the origins in favour of a more accessible, chorus-based approach that still retained sufficient progressive depth. The process of maturation of the songwriting continues ? and reaches its highest point ? on Eternity Ends. The music falls squarely into the melodic prog metal camp, but it does not lack originality. Inspired by label mates Angra, Time Machine incorporate in their sound refreshing Mediterranean and Latino influences, and a strong melodic allure that draws from the Italian singer-songwriter and pop tradition. The use of percussions, sax, and acoustic guitars add further intricacies and depth to their sound. Importantly ? and this is a major improvement over earlier albums - Time Machine never lose sight of accessibility, by keeping the song structures lean and linear and by giving the right weight to choruses in the compositions.

Another strength of Eternity Ends lies in the quality of the band's line-up. Nick Rossetti is a very good drummer. Already on the EP Shades of Time, his addition to the band had brought a more assured and virtuoso performance but also a vastly superior drum sound compared to previous records, and the new album is all the better for it. Nick Fortarezza, the other new element of the line-up, is a powerhouse. He has range and power, but also expressivity, something that many prog metal singers often lack. His performance on songs like "I, the Subversive Nazarene", the title-track, "I Believe Again" and "Behind the Cross" are nothing short of breath-taking. Also, Fortarezza's vocals have that typical Italian pop flavour that greatly contributes to giving a sense of originality to the material.

The album is centred on the persona of Jesus Christ and is divided in 12 songs. There are really no weak spots, but some tracks nevertheless stand out above the rest. After two short instrumentals, "I, the Subversive Nazarene" properly opens the album, and what an opener that is! The song is a robust, powerful mid-tempo graced by some fantastic vocal melodies by Nick Fortarezza, not too obvious but yet very catchy and memorable. The title-track is a bit more of a grower, but on repeated listens shows all its beauty. It has a nice Latino flavour thanks to some tasteful percussion work by Rossetti, and features three excellent guitar solos (two electric, one acoustic) by Taccone, Oggioni (the band's former guitar player) and de Berti. "Behind the Cross" is a grittier piece that, after an unusual start (with a Goblin-like keyboard motif), develops into an epic, powerful mid-tempo.

I kept last "I Believe Again", which is undoubtedly the best song of the album. Co-written with Angra's singer André Matos, this is one of those pieces that are so good that can define a whole musical career. Unsurprisingly, it has a marked Angra flavour, especially if you listen to the version sung by Matos (not included on the album, but on the EP Secret Oceans Pt 2 released in the same year). I love the onion-like structure of this song, with the verse bookending the track and the bridge and chorus in the middle. All three parts sport fantastic vocal melodies by Fortarezza, especially the atmospheric bridge and the ethereal verse. The tasteful use of Della Giustina's sax adds further layers of atmosphere to this beautiful ballad. If you can only listen to one song written by Time Machine, this is the one you should look out for.

Eternity Ends is Time Matchine's crowning achievement. It's a great album of melodic progressive metal, with a distinct Italian / Mediterranean feel. It's original, inventive and skillfully played. It has memorable songs, including one of the best prog metal ballads ever written. I am not exaggerating when I say that this is one of the hidden gems of progressive metal, and if you are into this genre, you ought to give it a try!

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 Shades of Time by TIME MACHINE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1997
3.95 | 6 ratings

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Shades of Time
Time Machine Progressive Metal

Review by lukretio

3 stars Time Machine are an Italian prog metal band from Milan and the EP Shades of Time is their fourth studio release. The band is renowned for their frequent personnel changes and Shades of Time is no exception. Antonio Rotta is replaced on the new EP by Nick Rossetti (from prog metal/rock band Enrico VIII) on drums. Vocalist Folco Orlandini also steps down to make space for Adolfo "Morby" Morviducci (Sabotage, Domine). Guitar players Ivan Oggioni and Joe Taccone stay on instead, and so does the band's bass player and main songwriter, Lorenzo Dehó. Stefano Della Giustina guests as keyboard and tenor sax player.

The EP has strong Queensryche vibes. A lot of the similarities come down to Morby, who on this album does one of the best Tate's impersonations you can find out there. The timbre is spot on, and also the phrasing is at times reminiscent of Queensryche's legendary singer. But it is not just the voice the reason why I am reminded of Queensryche when I listen to this EP. The music is similar too, with songs that inhabit that sweet spot between ballad and energetic mid-tempo that one can find aplenty on records such as Operation Mindcrime and Empire. The sound is dark and moody, yet also very melodic. The keyboards add the right atmosphere, while the drums and bass give the sound a solid, powerful background.

In truth, often the comparison with Queensryche is a bit too close for comfort, as in the case of the EP opener "Silent Revolution" (even the title could have been lifted off Operation Mindcrime), the anthemic "New Religion" and "Never-ending Love". "1000 Rainy Nights" is more interesting, a sort of moody ballad with a solid, powerful riffing and drums. "Past and Future" is a re-recording of a song that had originally appeared on Time Machine's debut EP (Project: Time Scanning). It was one of the highlights of that EP and the new version is perhaps even better, with Morby adding that extra dose of grit and epicness that brings to mind early Iron Maiden. Stefano Della Giustina adds a sax solo to this track, which confers the music an additional layer of colour.

I have not yet mentioned what I consider the best piece of the EP, the cover of Black Sabbath's "Heaven and Hell". Frankly, this song is so good that it is probably impossible to make it sound bad. Time Machine's version is slightly more direct and aggressive, but it nevertheless retains all the power and epicness of the original. Walking in the shoes of Ronnie James Dio is never an easy task, but Morby does an excellent job here. The early Iron Maiden vibes surface on this track too, especially in the speedier bits.

All in all, Shade of Times is a pleasant album that flows away smoothly, if without too many surprises or high points. In the context of Time Machine's discography, the EP is significant for two reasons. First, it is the first album that actually showcases a decent production. The guitars have finally a good, meaty sound, and so do the drums. The vocals are well produced too, probably also thanks to the experience of Morby as a singer. The second notable aspect of the record is the evident maturation in the songwriting department. Shades of Time is the first album where Dehó abandoned the complex, over-fragmented and frankly hard to assimilate songwriting style of his previous records, in favour of a more direct, chorus-centred approach, which perhaps may be slightly less ambitious but it is certainly more accessible and, in the end, enjoyable.

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 Into the Wild by URIAH HEEP album cover Studio Album, 2011
3.37 | 161 ratings

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Into the Wild
Uriah Heep Heavy Prog

Review by TCat
Forum & Site Admin Group Eclectic / Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

3 stars It says a lot that Uriah Heep, had finally got away from the revolving door of members coming and going in 1987. Except for the departure of long-time drummer Lee Kerslake in 2007 for health reasons, the line-up has remained the same with Bernie Shaw on vocals (you could pretty much say that he is the voice for UH now), forever UH member Mick Box, the only original member that has been with the band through everything, Phil Lanzon on keys, Trevor Bolder on bass and finally, Kerslake's replacement Russell Gilbrook on drums.

So, this line-up has had a lot of time to get familiar with each other, and quite honestly, they play as quite a tight union. The main problem is they have pretty much settled into a rather typical hard rock sound that has very little to do with progressive rock anymore. It's all quite straightforward, and the band has seen some success in a few countries with this formula.

To me, the music just doesn't stand out anymore as anything other than another good hard rock band. It is good that the band has found a foothold in their style, and they still get to show off the talents of their main players, Box on some really great guitar solos and Lanzon on the organ, they have that Deep Purple vibe, but with a rather formulaic and unoriginal sound. But, they do it well, don't get me wrong, it's just not music that stands out for me now. Deep Purple, the band that they are always compared to, at least has managed to incorporate their unique style into a current style of heavy rock, where Uriah Heep just pretty much sounds like any hard rock band and don't have enough uniqueness to keep them interesting, even in the non-progressive universe.

It always seems, however, that the band can still pull off a few really great tracks on each of their later albums. One of these is the real standout "Trail of Diamonds" which begins as a nice ballad-style and later evolves into an interesting heavy track with some excellent guitar and organ work, and even some great vocals from Shaw. This singing on this track tends to bring back some of the emotion we felt from the band in their early years, and that is always a big plus on a UH album. More emotion like this would help to raise the overall rating, but, unfortunately, this gets lost in following the formula and staying safe. At this point, UH is pretty much just maintaining the fans they have and not really winning over new fans or bringing back old fans that have lost faith in the band. More variety would have helped out too, but at least they still find time to allow Bolder to sing lead on one track, "Lost". There is a great organ solo at the end, but it fades too quickly. This track has some merit in that it is the last time we would hear his vocals and this album is the last time he plays for the band as he passed away from pancreatic cancer in 2013 and was replaced by Dave Rimmer who remains with the band today. There is one more standout moment with the ending track "Kiss of Freedom". Is it a coincidence that the two best tracks here are the longer ones (over 6 minutes)? Even then, there's nothing surprising here, it's just that these longer tracks seem to be better composed.

What you get here is mostly typical and predictable hard rock. There is plenty of this and the music will appeal to those fans. For me, it's not enough, even to satisfy the hard rocker in myself, as even in my mind, nothing much really stands out. It's just another album with a bunch of songs that could have easily fit on any of their albums released in 1990 to present. It's good, but I can't really recommend anything about it that you can't find on any other hard rock album. For the most part, the soul and fire of the early years is missing and you get a bunch of songs that could have easily come from the assembly line of hard rock songs.

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  27. From Silence to Somewhere
    Wobbler
  28. Hot Rats
    Frank Zappa
  29. Kind of Blue
    Miles Davis
  30. Storia Di Un Minuto
    Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM)
  31. Birds Of Fire
    Mahavishnu Orchestra
  32. A Farewell to Kings
    Rush
  33. H To He, Who Am The Only One
    Van Der Graaf Generator
  34. The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway
    Genesis
  35. The Yes Album
    Yes
  36. Crime of the Century
    Supertramp
  37. Octopus
    Gentle Giant
  38. Metropolis Part 2 - Scenes from a Memory
    Dream Theater
  39. Meddle
    Pink Floyd
  40. Scheherazade and Other Stories
    Renaissance
  41. The Power and the Glory
    Gentle Giant
  42. In the Land of Grey and Pink
    Caravan
  43. The Snow Goose
    Camel
  44. The Grand Wazoo
    Frank Zappa
  45. Ommadawn
    Mike Oldfield
  46. Images and Words
    Dream Theater
  47. Zarathustra
    Museo Rosenbach
  48. The Silent Corner And The Empty Stage
    Peter Hammill
  49. Still Life
    Van Der Graaf Generator
  50. A Trick of the Tail
    Genesis
  51. Hand. Cannot. Erase.
    Steven Wilson
  52. Permanent Waves
    Rush
  53. The Raven That Refused to Sing (and Other Stories)
    Steven Wilson
  54. Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
    Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso
  55. Rock Bottom
    Robert Wyatt
  56. Free Hand
    Gentle Giant
  57. Depois do Fim
    Bacamarte
  58. Still Life
    Opeth
  59. Acquiring The Taste
    Gentle Giant
  60. The Inner Mounting Flame
    Mahavishnu Orchestra
  61. A Drop of Light
    All Traps On Earth
  62. Fear Of A Blank Planet
    Porcupine Tree
  63. Romantic Warrior
    Return To Forever
  64. The Mothers of Invention: One Size Fits All
    Frank Zappa
  65. Hatfield and the North
    Hatfield And The North
  66. In Absentia
    Porcupine Tree
  67. Dwellers of the Deep
    Wobbler
  68. Space Shanty
    Khan
  69. Misplaced Childhood
    Marillion
  70. Voyage of the Acolyte
    Steve Hackett
  71. Mekanïk Destruktïw Kommandöh
    Magma
  72. Arbeit Macht Frei
    Area
  73. Obscura
    Gorguts
  74. Script for a Jester's Tear
    Marillion
  75. Radio Gnome Invisible Vol. 3 - You
    Gong
  76. Viljans Öga
    Änglagård
  77. Hamburger Concerto
    Focus
  78. Symbolic
    Death
  79. Spectrum
    Billy Cobham
  80. Felona E Sorona
    Le Orme
  81. If I Could Do It All Over Again, I'd Do It All Over You
    Caravan
  82. Emerson Lake & Palmer
    Emerson Lake & Palmer
  83. In A Silent Way
    Miles Davis
  84. Bitches Brew
    Miles Davis
  85. Second Life Syndrome
    Riverside
  86. Maxophone
    Maxophone
  87. Ghost Reveries
    Opeth
  88. Sing to God
    Cardiacs
  89. K.A (Köhntarkösz Anteria)
    Magma
  90. The Road of Bones
    IQ
  91. Rubycon
    Tangerine Dream
  92. Remedy Lane
    Pain Of Salvation
  93. Operation: Mindcrime
    Queensrÿche
  94. Crimson
    Edge Of Sanity
  95. Elegant Gypsy
    Al DiMeola
  96. The Perfect Element - Part 1
    Pain Of Salvation
  97. We'll Talk About It Later
    Nucleus
  98. Anabelas
    Bubu
  99. Blackwater Park
    Opeth
  100. Ys
    Il Balletto Di Bronzo

* Weighted Ratings (aka WR), used for ordering, is cached and re-calculated every 15 minutes.

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100 MOST PROLIFIC REVIEWERS

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ratings only excluded in count
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  2. Sean Trane (3161)
  3. Warthur (2942)
  4. ZowieZiggy (2931)
  5. apps79 (2629)
  6. UMUR (2122)
  7. siLLy puPPy (2112)
  8. b_olariu (2033)
  9. Easy Livin (1932)
  10. kev rowland (1816)
  11. Gatot (1811)
  12. Windhawk (1699)
  13. Conor Fynes (1613)
  14. SouthSideoftheSky (1595)
  15. BrufordFreak (1520)
  16. Tarcisio Moura (1450)
  17. Evolver (1423)
  18. TCat (1392)
  19. AtomicCrimsonRush (1340)
  20. Bonnek (1333)
  21. Matti (1317)
  22. kenethlevine (1313)
  23. snobb (1222)
  24. erik neuteboom (1201)
  25. Finnforest (1146)
  26. tszirmay (1015)
  27. ClemofNazareth (1011)
  28. octopus-4 (986)
  29. Rivertree (955)
  30. Cesar Inca (928)
  31. memowakeman (918)
  32. loserboy (896)
  33. Rune2000 (877)
  34. Marty McFly (840)
  35. Guillermo (794)
  36. Neu!mann (759)
  37. Chris S (753)
  38. Eetu Pellonpaa (722)
  39. Aussie-Byrd-Brother (714)
  40. DamoXt7942 (690)
  41. greenback (685)
  42. progrules (666)
  43. Seyo (658)
  44. admireArt (642)
  45. Prog-jester (626)
  46. Epignosis (624)
  47. friso (620)
  48. lor68 (601)
  49. Prog Leviathan (582)
  50. Ivan_Melgar_M (560)
  51. philippe (540)
  52. hdfisch (492)
  53. andrea (491)
  54. stefro (486)
  55. Chicapah (486)
  56. Menswear (476)
  57. Dobermensch (464)
  58. VianaProghead (463)
  59. zravkapt (460)
  60. colorofmoney91 (459)
  61. J-Man (449)
  62. ProgShine (444)
  63. russellk (440)
  64. Atavachron (430)
  65. The Crow (428)
  66. Sinusoid (403)
  67. Queen By-Tor (396)
  68. tarkus1980 (369)
  69. Nightfly (365)
  70. Greger (365)
  71. Zitro (365)
  72. Modrigue (360)
  73. fuxi (358)
  74. Progfan97402 (355)
  75. Cygnus X-2 (353)
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  77. Andrea Cortese (348)
  78. rdtprog (329)
  79. EatThatPhonebook (326)
  80. Guldbamsen (322)
  81. Negoba (320)
  82. richardh (316)
  83. FragileKings (316)
  84. Tom Ozric (306)
  85. patrickq (302)
  86. Kazuhiro (299)
  87. Flucktrot (296)
  88. progaardvark (290)
  89. GruvanDahlman (290)
  90. Proghead (288)
  91. OpethGuitarist (287)
  92. Second Life Syndrome (273)
  93. daveconn (266)
  94. Trotsky (264)
  95. Muzikman (263)
  96. Slartibartfast (261)
  97. clarke2001 (254)
  98. aapatsos (252)
  99. The T (246)
  100. Andy Webb (237)

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