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SIRIUS

Symphonic Prog • Germany


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Sirius biography
Sirius was a German symphonic band that existed in the prog vacuum of the '80s. Led by vocalist and keyboardist Stefan Neubauer, the core membership also included Stefan Papsthorst on keyboards,?Thomas Honninger on drums?and Martin Vogel on guitar and bass. Stefan Barnikel on percussion, and Dieter Urbassik on tenor sax would be added for the second release. 1982's "Running to Paradise, and 1984's "The three Bushes" are the band's only albums.

Obviously, this is keyboard driven music. However, they did add strings and flute to "Running to Paradise." The likely comparisons are to Drangonfly, Flame Dream, and England. Neubauer's piano has been compared to (of all people) Liberace. He also dabbled in some sitar on "The Three Bushes." Both albums are considered worthy contributions to the symphonic prog pantheon.

H.T. Riekels (bhikkhu)

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SIRIUS discography


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SIRIUS top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.96 | 17 ratings
Running To Paradise
1982
4.17 | 14 ratings
The Three Bushes
1984

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SIRIUS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 The Three Bushes  by SIRIUS album cover Studio Album, 1984
4.17 | 14 ratings

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The Three Bushes
Sirius Symphonic Prog

Review by cirrusbay

5 stars If ever there was a nomination for a lost classic, this would get my vote. Keyboardist Stefan Neubauer and his band have created a very warm, rich sound very much in the likes of Tony Banks, especially on this album. Imagine what Banks could have potentially done had prog been huge and the pressure from record companies was to be as proggy and beautiful as possible, rather than dumbing it down to write pop singles. This is a mix of pure classic prog, and 'A Curious Feeling'-era Banks. Neubauer, who writes all of the music, obviously loves the big chords and wonderfully surprising key changes that Mr. Banks loves, and though many passages recall Banks, many passages do not. 'The Three Bushes' is the 2nd and better of the 2 albums Sirius released in the early 80s, more consistent and just stronger in many ways to their very good debut, and is not a perfect album-the sound quality is not great, there is not the crystal clearness that a remaster or remix may offer, and the drums are a little weak in the mix. Also, the oft-theatrical vocals are okay but nothing to write home about-however the music is superb. The detailed composition, in my opinion, is superior to every other Genesis influenced act of the time. Measures fit one after the next like a puzzle, perfectly placed, and every note seems well thought out. This is especially evident in the 2nd half of the album. There are many 'wow' moments here, especially in instrumental passages, such as in 'Grandfather Sang It' and when the sax first comes in, in 'Phoenix Again' around the 3-minute mark. There is a vocal moment-about 4 measures long-that occurs 3 times overall in 'The Happy Shepherd' that takes my breath away. I find it playing through my head randomly, still giving me chills and taking me back to my childhood somehow. It's one of those things I always wished someone would write. And then the title track is perhaps my favorite of all, although that can change with the day. 8 tracks overall here, and every one of them a pleasure. Very happy to have snagged this release from Greg at synphonic. All that's needed now is a remaster.

 Running To Paradise by SIRIUS album cover Studio Album, 1982
3.96 | 17 ratings

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Running To Paradise
Sirius Symphonic Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars This is one of the albums that stengthens the phrase ''anything that doesn't kill you,just makes you stronger''.And,since prog wasn't exactly dead meat in the 80's,we can find rare little gems in this decade.One of them is the debut album of SIRIUS,a german band of early 80's with a strong 70's sound (at least in this album).The band's major figures were keyboardist/vocalist/pianist Stefan Neubauer and keyboardist/harpsichordist/string-synthesist Stefan Papshorst.This is also a strong example of a band that is influenced by another band,that is influenced by another band.So,SIRIUS are very similar to ENGLAND,who are very similar to YES (and in a lesser extend to GENESIS

The opening track is a masterpiece.Led by the piano of Neubauer,the band delivers excellent piano- driven melodic prog very close to ENGLAND.''The fiddler of Dooney'' is the surprise of the album with additional violin strings and flute,a very good work.''Why should...'' has a very YES-related sound with masterful starting vocal harmonies,while the eponymous track goes as much close as it gets to ENGLAND and YES,but it's one of the strongest tracks of the album with beautiful keyboards,nice flutes and superb vocals for one more time.''September 1913'' delivers again melodic symph prog with great guitars by Martin Vogel similar to STEVE HACKETT's style of playing,excellent piano and amazing vocal sections.''From mountain...'' comes next and it is one of my favourites of the album,very YES-oriented and very keyboard-driven with beautiful interplays between all instruments and again the vocals are amazing and do have a leading role.''Cocooning inside'' is a romantic piano-driven instrumental piece of music,while ''The happy townland'' is a great closer,with fast guitar solos,amazing vocal harmonies and thrilling piano-guitar interplays!

Another obsure band from the 80's,SIRIUS proove that they were excellent musicians and composed some of the most insired music in 80's prog.The truth is I can't find any reason why this album can't be considered a masterpiece,hardly I can find a weak point through the album.However,due to the lack of originality it would be more fair to give this work a 4 star rating,but add a half star more cause' I'm very sensible with bands from the 80's that tried to pur progressive music.So,my final rating is 4.5 stars...Very close to a masterpice and absolutely essential!

 The Three Bushes  by SIRIUS album cover Studio Album, 1984
4.17 | 14 ratings

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The Three Bushes
Sirius Symphonic Prog

Review by Progbear
Prog Reviewer

4 stars More of the sprightly, "Romantic" symphonic rock of RUNNING TO PARADISE here as well. In the end, I don't find this album quite as satisfying as its wholly ingratiating predecessor, as it doesn't seem quite as fresh and inspired. Still, there are moments of great delight here, as on the classically-inspired piano-based instrumental "After The Look". And really, how many sympho-prog albums can you name that use sitar for textural reasons, not to sound particularly "Indian". They certainly deserve points for that, if nothing else!

Guest appearances on tenor sax (ex-Cry Freedom saxman Dieter Urbassik) and percussion this time round.

 Running To Paradise by SIRIUS album cover Studio Album, 1982
3.96 | 17 ratings

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Running To Paradise
Sirius Symphonic Prog

Review by Progbear
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Rather underrated (probably because it's so obscure) symphonic rock album from Germany. Sirius picked up the torch for bands like Novalis and Grobschnitt, who were rather abandoning the symphonic style for more commercial realms. But Sirius' sound is altogether more English. Genesis seems the dominant influence. The instrumental sound is dominated by keyboards, which should come as no surprise considering there are two keyboardists in the band: Stefan Neubauer (also the lead singer) and Stefan Papsthorst.

I'd compare them stylistically to England and their classic GARDEN SHED album, if only because I get the same vibe from them as far as sunny attitude and curiously antiquated lyrical content. Neubauer's chirpy voice adds to the effect. The sound is something of a bridge between the classic 70's sounds and upcoming 80's sounds, with Hammond organ, string-synth and Wurlitzer electric piano side-by-side with more modern (for 1982) Prophets and other synthesizers. The result is something that sounds classic, yet up-to-date. But it's the extravagant, classically-styled acoustic piano work that ties it all together. Guest players on violin ("The Fiddler of Dooney") and flute add to the proceedings.

All in all, a very charming release. Fans of the likes of Flame Dream, Amenophis, Anyone's Daughter, Dragonfly, Machiavel and the like will find much to enjoy here.

Thanks to Prog Lucky for the artist addition. and to Ivan_Melgar_M for the last updates

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