Genesis release When In Rome 2007 the DVD directed by David Mallet at Wal-Mart on June 10. Genesis – Tony Banks, Phil Collins and Mike Rutherford – returned after 15 years with one of 2007's most successful tours. After a series of brilliant stadium performances across Europe, the tour ended with a spellbinding grand finale in Rome as the band performed in front of 500,000 fans who filled the historic Circo Massimo for this free, open-air concert. Legendary director David Mallet captured the entire 2 hour and 36 minute spectacle with multiple cameras for When In Rome 2007. This three-DVD set includes the entire concert, plus photo galleries, deleted scenes and photographic reproductions of tour programs. Additionally, the third disc contains "Come Rain Or Shine," an extraordinary fly-on-the-wall documentary filmed by Anthony Mathile that covers the entire tour from the planning stages in 2006 to the show in Rome. Pre-orders for this massive triple DVD set are now available starting May 7, 2008, exclusively at walmart.com, samsclub.com, and genesis-music.com. The DVD, scheduled for a June 10 release, will be available exclusively at Wal-Mart stores and Sam's Clubs in the U.S. as well as Walmart.com, samsclub.com and genesis-music.com. Filmed on July 14, 2007, the show spans such Genesis classics as " Land Of Confusion " and "Mama" to older Genesis repertoire "Los Endos," "Carpet Crawlers" and the haunting "Ripples." Each track on the first two discs gives the viewer access to visual extras relating to each song on the DVD.
Beautifully packaged in a slipcase, the DVD digipack includes a 28-page booklet. The concert is a showcase for the classic Genesis line-up of Banks, Collins and Rutherford along with longtime sidemen Chester Thompson (drums) and Daryl Stuermer (guitar). The stunning stage production for the Turn It On Again tour included the largest screen ever used at a concert, spanning nearly 210 feet. The set was designed by world famous Mark Fisher and the spectacular lighting show, the work of genius Patrick Woodroffe. During the tour, Genesis played to a staggering 1,4 million fans during 22 European dates before heading to North America in September 2007 to play 25 more dates from Toronto to Los Angeles. On the third disc, the nearly two-hour documentary, "Come Rain Or Shine," offers an unusually frank and humorous look into the dynamics of life on the road and the mechanics, decisions and presentation of a legendary band on tour for the first time in 15 years. The film charts the band's epic journey, including the very first meeting of the band at a rehearsal studio in New York in September 2006, planning the tour, capturing the real personalities behind Genesis and the pitfalls of planning of a multi-million dollar production. Last spring, Rhino launched a complete upgrade of the band's catalog with the first two in a series of three box sets containing all 13 studio albums by one of the top-selling recording artists of all time. The box sets present each album as a two-disc set with a CD featuring a newly remixed version of the original studio album, and a DVD that includes a 5.1 Surround Sound mix of the album as well as videos, photo galleries, photographic reproductions of tour programs and interviews with band member filmed exclusively for this extensive collection. This fall, Rhino will conclude the series with its highly anticipated box set covering Genesis' early years with founding member Peter Gabriel. Spanning six years, the set will include such progressive rock classics as Trespass, Nursery Cryme, Foxtrot, Selling England By The Pound and The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway.
Rhino Records will release the “lost” Chicago studio album, Stone of Sisyphus(XXXII), on June 17. Chicago will be appearing on A&E’s Private Sessions this Sunday June 8 at 9am and on the CBS Early Show on June 20. In his book, The Greatest Music Never Sold, author Dan Leroy writes about the Stone Of Sisyphus, the great lost Chicago album. Recorded in 1993 and produced by Peter Wolf, Sisyphus became a cult record immediately after Warner Bros. refused to release it because it wasn't the Chicago record that was expected. Knowing what they had created and not willing to compromise, the band left Warner Bros. and took the album with them. Now, 15 years later, on June 17, this 11-song album with four bonus tracks will finally be available from Rhino Records at all physical and digital outlets, for a suggested list price of $18.98 for CD and $9.99 for download. Powered by Chicago 's celebrated horn section, the tracks on Sisyphus have bite, power and swing, and the "fire in the belly" that one associates usually with debut albums. The songs touch on a wide range of styles and moods, including the energetic horn-driven title track, "Stone Of Sisyphus," the cool funk groove of "Mah-Jong," the anti-corporate rock broadside "Plaid," the touching emotional lyrics of "The Pull" and Robert Lamm's rap on "Sleeping In The Middle Of The Bed." "Bigger Than Elvis" features contributions from musicians who worked with "The King" himself, including The Jordinaires and Jerry Scheff (father of Chicago bassist Jason Scheff). "We wrote songs that were more experimental, songs that were more daring in terms of musical direction and chord construction, more than anything," remembers James Pankow, whose innovative horn charts had been an integral part of Chicago 's distinctive sound from the start. "We got into really feeling our oats in terms of being the voice of Chicago again. It had been a long time since we had made a record like that." Looking back, the band members wish they had found a way to release SISYPHUS sooner, but there is intense pride in having stood up for their creative integrity -- a Chicago trademark. While Sisyphus became an underground classic, widely bootlegged by fans, Chicago continued to defy music business conventions by forming their own record company, and recording hugely successful big band and holiday records before it was the fashion.
To date, Chicago's remarkable achievements include a Grammy" Award, record sales that exceed 100,000,000, including 21 Top 10 singles, five consecutive #1 albums, five #1 singles, 13 platinum albums and five gold singles. An incredible 25 of their 30 albums have been certified platinum, and Chicago is the first American band to chart Top 40 albums in five decades.
No-Man (the duo of Tim Bowness and Porcupine Tree's Steven Wilson) will be performing their first full concert since 1993 at the Bush Hall, London, on August 29th (Doors open, 7.30-8pm). The gig will be filmed for possible DVD release and there are plans (as yet unconfirmed) for a European mini-tour to follow in December, 2008. The band’s new album “Schoolyard Ghosts” was released a week ago. Check Related Links below for more details.
K-Scope Music is pleased to announce the forthcoming semi-acoustic album Hindsight from UK band Anathema. The disc features old and new favorites from the band’s career, with new arrangements utilizing acoustic, electrical and orchestral instruments to construct the deep, emotional landscapes Anathema have become renowned for. This album will also feature the beautiful cello playing of Dave Wesling from the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. A close friend of the band, Dave previously toured with the band in 2004 and is featured on the DVD ‘A Moment in Time’. The record has been arranged, recorded, performed and produced solely by the band. Anathema have been at the forefront of the UK rock/metal movement for many years. They began their journey as pioneers of melodic heavy music, influencing a myriad of bands to follow them, before outgrowing all genres and limitations as they fearlessly explored new territory and new ways to express feeling through sound. Anathema have gained a sizable worldwide following and much critical acclaim. Having played hundreds of shows in over 30 countries on their ‘natural disaster’ tour, they are currently working on the follow up to Hindsight, an album of brand new material entitled Horizons. This is set to be an album beyond all expectations.
Hindsight will be released on CD by Kscope on August 25th 2008 and will be available to download from August 18th.
Progressive rock band Osada Vida returns with a follow-up to the highly acclaimed album “Three Seats behind a Triangle”. New material entitled "The Body Parts Party" is a concept album which describes people's feelings and emotions – the negative as well as the positive ones. "The Body Parts Party" will be released by Metal Mind Productions on 16th June 2008 in Europe and 8th July 2008 in USA (via MVD).
Kevin Bartlett releases "Glow In The Dark" and Celebrates 25 years of Indie Label, Aural Gratification. Kevin Bartlett is a composer and musician who fuses his unique guitar sound with electronic wizardry and symphonic elements to create music that is a unique synthesis of progressive, ambient and cinematic styles. Bartlett's record label, Aural Gratification, is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. Originally created to release his own recordings, Aural Gratification blossomed into an Indie label releasing 25 titles including 9 albums by cult-favorite Happy Rhodes. Bartlett's career has covered all aspects of the music business, from special effects lighting design, which connected him with the likes of Janis Joplin, Led Zeppelin, The Who and some of the biggest names in rock, to theatrical and commercial composing, including "Reach For The Stars: The Christa McAuliffe Story", Toni Morrison's "Dreaming Emmett", New York's Circle Rep and the Nikolai Dance Theatre. His television credits include MTV, HBO, VH-1, Sesame Street, CNN, E Style Network and The Discovery Channel Music from "Glow in the Dark" is featured as the score for the upcoming documentary, "Peaceable Kingdom" from filmmakers Tribe of Heart. Bartlett lives and works in Woodstock, NY. He's just finished construction of a new studio where he is continuing work on film and TV scoring along with rehearsals for his own live show.
Sonic360 is pleased to announce the UK release of “Circus Money”, Walter Becker’s first solo album in 14 years. The album is released in the UK on Monday July 14th. Over the past 38 years, Becker and his long-time collaborator Donald Fagen have released 10 albums under the Steely Dan moniker. Circus Money is Becker’s second solo effort.
The album features Steely Dan sidemen Keith Carlock (drums) and Jon Herington (guitar), plus keyboardists Ted Baker and Jim Beard. The musical direction of the new album has a very strong Jamaican dub feel to it. Becker handles lead vocals and plays bass guitar on all songs, and also plays guitar on three tracks.
As previously announced, Metal Mind Productions will release the first live DVD by Oliver Wakeman Band entitled “Coming to Town – Live in Katowice”. In mid March 2008 Yes confirmed their world-wide tour with Oliver Wakeman taking the position of the keyboardist.
Rocket Scientists with special guest Lana Lane have scheduled two concerts at opposite ends of the country with their first show at the 2nd Annual Bay Area Rock Fest on Friday, June 27th 2008. The two-day festival will be held in San Francisco, CA. Rocket Scientists' second concert, also with special guest Lana Lane, will be at the 1st Annual Power of Prog Festival in Clinton, NY on Sunday, June 29th.
The Flower Kings announce 2 new members of the TFK family: new drummer/ percussionist Erik Hammarstr?m and vocalist/ keyboardist/ guitarist Ola Heden.
The band is currently working on a number of side projects at the present, including new releases from Karmakanic and Tomas Bodin (Cinematograph),
and there are two yet unnamed project/groups from Dr Stolt & Dr Reingold.
Flower Kings will reunite in a couple of weeks for a series of rehearsals for upcoming shows/ festivals and later also for a new CD recording. Upcoming shows:
SAT July 19th - "Night of the Prog" Festival, Loreley
SUN Aug 24 - "3 Rivers" Festival, Pittsburgh, PA
TUE Aug 26 - New York City, NY, BB Kings
WED Aug 27 - Arlington, MA, Regent Theater
SAT Aug 30 - Chicago, IL, Martyrs
SAT Sept 6th – Prog festival, Cascais, Portugal
SAT Oct 11th - Motstoy Festival, Norway
Ahleuchatistas plan to begin composing again this summer. Shane Perlowin has recently been bringing his side projects into fruition.
Gregg Bendian (The Mahavishnu Project):
Gregg Bendian has just released "Research: Tiny Useful Secrets", a CD of his solo percussion compositions on the Aggregate Music label. He will tour Canada in May and June and Europe from September - November with The Musical Box, performing Genesis' "Trick of the Tail" show.
Birdsongs of the Mesozoic:
Birdsongs is working on a 2-CD retrospective to be released on Cuneiform this fall that documents the "Triassic" era of the band circa 1983 -'87. "Dawn of the Cycads" will feature the band's complete Ace of Hearts recordings, which consist of 3 vinyl releases (1983's "EP," 1984's "Magnetic Flip" LP, and 1986's "The Beat of the Mesozoic" EP) plus studio and live unreleased material including 7 selections recorded in May 1987 at Nightstage in Boston. The line-up on these recordings include ex-Mission of Burma members Roger Miller on piano and Martin Swope on guitar, plus current Mesozoic members Erik Lindgren on MiniMoog/ MemoryMoog and Rick Scott on Farfisa organ/Yamaha DX-7 synthesizer. Disc 2 is encoded with bonus attachments that include posters, the dozen "Misinformation Sheets" (the band's newsletter created by Roger Miller), 5 dioramas (included with the first EP, etc. This material is licensed from producer Richard W Harte of Ace of Hearts Records in Boston and was remastered under his supervision at Sterling Sound in NYC. It is a sonic upgrade, with additional material from 1988's "Sonic Geology" release, and has a 20-page booklet with essays by Roger, Erik, Rick Scott, and Jay Reeg, plus previously unseen photos and memorabilia.
Cosmologic’s trombonist Michael Dessen just released an album with his trio featuring Tyshawn Sorey and Christopher Tordini on Clean Feed Records titled Between Shadow and Space.
Doctor Nerve / Nick Didkovsky:
Nick's working on mixing the multitrack recording of the recent Nerve gig at Orion Sound Studios in Baltimore.
The new Guapo album "Elixirs" on Neurot Recordings has already been released in the USA and is due for release in Europe on May 19th. Guapo will be performing at this years Super Sonic festival in Birmingham, UK. The festival takes place from 11th to 13th July at the Custard Factory - Guapo play on Saturday 12th.
Hamster Theatre has been on haitus, but now that Thinking Plague is back from its European jaunt, work on new material has begun. Meanwhile, the Tin Box CD is nearly completely recorded, and Dave and Elaine are in communication with Cedric Vuille from L'Ensemble Raye, which will hopefully produce some collaborative material, either as Hamster Theatre or as something else.
Richard is back to work on his new solo album (for 2009, but with Merzbow, Wolf eyes and Magma musicians participations). They are yet to be recorded, still waiting to record: the drums and the last guitars. A Richard Pinhas / Merzbow double CD is to be released through Cuneiform records, USA, this September.
Radio Massacre International (coming from the band):
We have completed work on our first commissioned film soundtrack, `City 21' by The Knossus Project. We enjoyed creating in a different way and have arrived at 120 minutes of pieces ranging from a few seconds, to 26 minutes long. We're assured the film will be very music orientated. It's due for release in the next three months or so. Work is also underway on material for a new album for Cuneiform which will hopefully see the light of day early next year.
Yang has completed the recording of their next album “Machines”, some mixing adjustments still remain to be done, but the main work is over. Release is planned for end 2008.
K-Scope Music presents Tightly Unwound, the new album from The Pineapple Thief (now available). A new mini-documentary about the band is streaming exclusively from the Kscope Tightly Unwound mini-site. Filmed at the recent sell out show at the Half Moon at Putney, the 15 minute film includes live versions of two of the tracks from the new album along with interviews with Bruce and the band.
The Seventh Season was established in 1972. Led by Yuri Batygin, in the years 1972-1975 the band performed at various stages, trying to find its own sound. From 1976 to1979 the band spent their time mostly recording numerous songs in their home studio. The Seventh Season restarted again in 1998. In its current form, The Seventh Season has been around since the spring of 2001. Consisting of three members, the band decided to record a full-length EP prior to any other action. They released their first CD, "Fall Within" in March 2003. In 2006 they released DVD/CD "Transposition" with live concert performed on 23 February 2006 in Emeryville College for Digital Arts, Emeryville, CA. In 2008 the band released their third CD album "Liquid Water".
Listen to a new track by The Crystal Sun called Landscape. It is the title track from The Crystal Sun's debut album out now on 12 Apostles Records and is steeped in the heavy neu-prog vibe that is destined to be the sound of summer. Its epic scope takes in the full gamut from delicate pastoral passages to motorik riffage and mellotron freak-out, united by a singular dedication to crafting a warm and all enveloping sound. Recorded using a mixture of vintage and virtual instruments The Crystal Sun have forged an album that transcends mere nostalgia and instead pushes forward to explore contemporary themes such as alienation from, and disharmony with, the environment. Each track is carefully crafted, hinting at the old forms of progressive rock, psychedelia, and krautrock, but delivered with a passionately modern sensibility. And through sheer unity of purpose the Crystal Sun have fused these disparate elements to create a balanced, coherent work that enthralls and delights.
Univers Zero – “Univers Zero”
(RIO, Chamber Rock, Classical)
More than 30 years ago, a group of seven unknown, mostly Belgian musicians gathered in a small basement studio to record their first album, which they released themselves in a tiny edition of 500 copies. The album was untitled, the cover bearing only the band’s name, but the catalogue number on the first, limited pressing – 1313 – would in later years be used as its name. The power and originality of this album – the first recording by the Belgian band Univers Zero – stunned listeners at the time. At some point during the album’s numerous subsequent reissues, the album was renamed 1313. Each reissue delighted existing fans and attracted new audiences; decades later, the album continues to astound. Today, Univers Zero is acknowledged to mark the birth of “chamber rock”: a new and startlingly original musical genre – a perfect hybrid of classical music and rock – that may conceivably be the Francophone world’s most significant [unique/ distinctive/ singular] contribution to late 20th Century New Music. Featuring music that was simultaneously medieval and modern, merging influences from early 20th Century classical composers such as Bartok and Stravinsky, with the power and iconoclasm of rock music, Univers Zero marked the debut of one of the greatest avant-garde ensembles of all-time.
This reissue by Cuneiform restores Univers Zero’s debut album to its original look – the cover reproduces that of the original pressing, with its original name – Univers Zero as opposed to 1313, while enhancing the album’s original sound – the music is completely remixed. Remixed from the original 1977 multi-track tapes and remastered, the nuances of Univers Zero’s unique, primarily acoustic and primarily classical instrumentation come to the fore: bassoon, violin, harmonium, viola, oboe, and spinet, interwoven with guitar, bass and drums. In addition to the studio album, which featured Univers Zero bandmembers Michel Berckmans (bassoon), Daniel Denis (drums, percussion), Marcel Dufrane (violin), Christian Genet (bass), Patrick Hanappier (violin, viola, pocket cello), Emmanuel Nicaise (harmonium, spinet), and Roger Trigaux (guitar) – this reissue also includes a live, 28 minute bonus track. A 1979 performance of “La Faulx” that was recorded by Belgie Radio Televisie, the live track features Berckmans (bassoon and oboe), Denis (drums), Hanappier (violin), Guy Segers (bass and vocal and noise effects), and Trigaux (harmonium and guitar). The CD reissue is accompanied by a 16pp. booklet containing a history of the band’s early years written by music historians Renato Moraes and Aymeric Leroy and illustrated with archival photos. Reproducing the original artwork, the cover features only the band’s name – Univers Zero; for the CD’s catalogue number, Cuneiform has used the number 1313. Such careful restored packaging is befitting this album’s landmark status: a seminal album in the history of rock, as well as a lodestar for the future of classical music. By the close of the 20th Classical, chamber rock’s influence on avant-garde rock would extend beyond the French-speaking world to the rest of Europe, Scandinavia, North America, Japan, and beyond. Today, in the 21st Century, the classical music world is discovering Univers Zero, whose music reveals a new direction for classical music, injecting new vigor, attracting new audiences and breathing new life into the scene.
Lars Hollmer – “Viandra”
Swedish composer/ accordionist/ keyboardist Lars Hollmer creates popular instrumental music that transcends modern musical genres and evokes the heart and soul of traditional Scandinavian folk music. In a career spanning 4 decades, based in the ancient university town of Uppsala, he has recorded scores of albums and created a highly distinctive body of solo and collaborative work that can best be characterized as a kaleidoscope of musical influences forged through a singular Nordic lens. Interweaving traditional folk musics with popular music of the present and near-past (rock, jazz, film scores, carnival and circus music) and influences from classical composers, Hollmer’s music infuses danceable melodies with complex time signatures, and invites instruments long associated with the common folk (accordions, harmoniums etc) to the fore, to dance alongside classical (bassoons, oboe) or modern popular (jazz and rock) instrumentation. The resultant sound is melodic and accessible, intelligent and complex, and above all, heartfelt and sincere, spanning human emotions from joy to despair. Revered in his native country, who awarded this “giant in the Swedish musical society” a Swedish Grammy Award for solo work in 1999, Hollmer’s music has begun to receive more widespread, popular recognition outside Scandinavia, due to his ongoing, high energy international projects. His recent projects include membership in the accordion supergroup, Accordion Tribe, the subject of an award-winning European documentary; collaborations with French Canadian (Jean Derome, FanFare Pourpour, Miriodor) and Japanese musicians (Sola, with Ruins’ drummer Tatsuya Yoshida); appearances at countless high-profile music festivals; and a series of recordings released in Germany, Canada, Japan and the USA.
This recording, Viandra – whose title, says Lars, is derived from Vi=We and Andra=Others – is
Hollmer’s 12th solo album and is his first CD to be released in the USA, by Cuneiform. It may well be the most ‘accessible’ of Hollmer’s solo recordings to date – especially in physical terms, through global release and distribution. Composed between 2001 and 2007, Viandra chronicles solo work that Hollmer felt compelled to create during one of his career’s most active periods of international artistic collaboration, and one of the most eventful periods in his personal life. As such, it is a uniquely personal and contemplative work. Speaking of Viandra, Hollmer notes that: “My music has always been a mirror of my life, and this time more than ever, I believe.” Recorded at the Chickenhouse – the Uppsala studio where Hollmer’s artistic soul comes home to roost – Viandra features Hollmer on a myriad of instruments (accordion, various keyboards, harmonium, glockenspiel and more), playing with some of his most beloved collaborators, including long-time associate (and Univers Zero member) Michel Berckmans on bassoon, oboe and French horn, and Santiago Jimenez on violin. The music is pure Lars Hollmer: defying convention while paying homage to the past, Viandra transcends modern musical genres to transport the listener on a journey through the heart of humanity, on the wings of a Nordic soul.
Wadada Leo Smith’s Golden Quartet – “Tabligh”
Lauded as “one of the most vital musicians on the planet” by Coda, Wadada Leo Smith is one of the most visionary, boldly original and artistically important figures in contemporary American jazz and free music, and one of the greatest trumpet players of all time. As a composer, improviser, performer, music theorist/writer and educator, Smith has devoted a lifetime to navigating the emotional heart, spiritual soul, social significance and physical structure of jazz – both free and composed – and world music to create new music of infinite possibility and nuance. Since the 1960s, when Smith became a founding member of AACM and debuted as a composer on Anthony Braxton’s 1968 *Three Compositions of New Jazz*, he has released nearly 30 albums under either his own name or his bands’ on ECM, Moers, Black Saint and other labels, including numerous releases on his own Kabell label in the ‘70s-‘80s and on Tzadik, Pi Recordings and Cuneiform (Yo Miles!), in the ‘90s and 2000s. In 2004, Tzadik released a highly acclaimed boxed set of his early work, called *The Kabell Years 1971-79*. In 2005, Smith’s music was spot-lit as the subject of a three-day Creative Music Festival held at RedCat in Los Angeles. The crowning highlight of that festival, headlining on November 19, was a concert by Wadada Leo Smith’s Golden Quartet, a musical project especially dear to his heart.
This CD, Tabligh, the first release by Wadada Leo Smith’s Golden Quartet on Cuneiform, was taped live at the November 19th 2005 concert. The third CD by the Quartet, it is the first one to feature the group’s new acoustic-electric lineup: Wadada Leo Smith on trumpet, Vijar Iyer on piano, Fender Rhodes and synthesizer, John Lindberg on bass, and Shannon Jackson on drums.
Smith had brought these gifted composers/improvisers/performers together in 2004, and in the spring 2005 they did an extensive European tour. Their world premiere at the Banlieues Blues Festival was filmed for *Eclipse*, a DVD documentary recently released by La Huit Productions. In contrast with the DVD, which features the same lineup, this CD features the Quartet performing on its home turf, after it had spent time touring together. On Tabligh, the musicians converse like old friends, speaking Smith’s musical language with ease, and performing four of his compositions. The music on the *Tabligh* CD is both riveting and reverent, offering breathtaking vistas across and interpretations of a jazz landscape that encompasses sound as well as silence, abstraction as well as grooves. In both its form and its content, the music on Tabligh is one of the purest expressions of Smith’s creative ideals.
Revolutionary Snake Ensemble – “Forked Tongue”
Dressed a la Mardi Gras in feathered masks and multi-colored, sequined costumes, playing music that riotously combines the rhythms of New Orleans brass bands with improvisation and heaping undercurrents of funk, the Revolutionary Snake Ensemble inhabits that rare musical planet on which Sun Ra, James Brown, George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic and a myriad of New Orleans marching bands jointly reside. Based physically in Boston since forming in 1990, the horn and percussion-based group is led by saxophonist/composer Ken Field, who describes it as "a funk and street beat brass band, playing New Orleans and other modern improvised celebratory styles." The Snakes' music is rooted in the New Orleans tradition of jazz funerals – a tradition unique to the birthplace of jazz – which began with a 'first line' procession to the burial ground, a brass band playing hymns in a funeral dirge. Afterwards, there was a celebration of the deceased's life, with a 'second line' of musicians playing up-tempo music celebrating the miracle of life. Playing Field's original compositions and rearrangements of traditional tunes, opening up new avenues for improvisation, the Revolutionary Snake Ensemble celebrates, expands, and transforms the brass band tradition – a tradition, in the wake of Hurricane Katrina that is now in diaspora.
The Revolutionary Snake Ensemble's 2nd release, Forked Tongue, is their first release on Cuneiform. In the New Orleans brass band tradition, Forked Tongue opens with a New Orleans' funeral dirge, "Just a Closer Walk", before exploring more upbeat fare. Containing a total of 12 tunes, the disc showcases a wide range of the Snakes' repertoire. It includes unique arrangements of traditional New Orleans marching music and spirituals and of music by such diverse songwriters as William Broad (aka Billy Idol), Ornette Colemen (this may be the first disc ever to feature both Idol and Coleman!), Norman Span, and Jay Livingston & Ray Evans, as well as original material by Field. The album features Field on alto sax, whistles and percussion, Andrew Hickman on tenor saxophone, Jon Fraser on trumpet, Lennie Peterson on trombone, Kimon Kirk on acoustic bass, and on drums and percussion, both Erik Paull and Phil Neighbors (who also contributes electric bass). Guest musicians include vocalist Gabrielle Agachicko performing Field's stunning minor key arrangement of the traditional classic "Down By the Riverside." Other guests include Karen Aqua (djembe, tambourine), Andy Pinkham (electric bass), and Jesse Williams (bass). Recorded in 2006 at Boston's Mortal Music Studios with engineer/ owner Andy Pinkham, it was remixed by Minneapolis' Balanced Productions and mastered in Los Angeles by Bob Demaa.
Cosmologic – “Eyes in the Back of My Head”
Based in the San Diego area, the group Cosmologic traverses the broad terrain of creative jazz and improvised music, integrating high-energy playing, intense introspection, rich grooves, open textures, and collective alchemy. Central to the group’s sound is a shared commitment to developing organic, original pieces that incorporate both composition and improvisation, and an ongoing pursuit of new ideas. While profoundly dedicated to improvisation, Cosmologic also performs complex, structured pieces that are composed by an individual member and then transformed through extensive group work. This process often leads the quartet into complex musical landscapes, while drawing on the individual strengths of each member.
Cosmologic was founded as a composers and improvisers’ collective in 1999, and still consists of the original four musicians: Jason Robinson (reeds), Nathan Hubbard (percussion), Michael Dessen (trombone), and Scott Walton (bass & piano). Cosmologic’s new CD, *Eyes in the Back of My Head*, is the band’s 4th album and first release on Cuneiform. A studio recording made in December 2006 and containing 8 tracks, the CD features compositions contributed by each of the members and improvisation contributed by all. Featuring some of the most creative, vibrant creative modern jazz produced today, *Eyes in the Back of My Head* both celebrates the band’s past decade of existence, and points towards a shining future for this group.
Sylvan (Germany) – “Posthumous Silence: The Show” DVD
Sylvan (Germany) – “Leaving Backstage” 2CD
Factory of Dreams (Portugal) – “Poles”
RC2 (Spain) – “Future Awaits”
Jupiter Society (Sweden) – “First Contact & Last Warning”
Sylvan – “Posthumous Silence: The Show” DVD
Sylvan – “Leaving Backstage” 2CD
After the incredible success of their concept album "Posthumous Silence" and celebrating their
10th anniversary Sylvan presents the entire concept album in a breathtaking setting worth their unique music Sylvan staged a huge live show on September 1, 2007 to record this stunning DVD as well as a double CD. With a string section and backup singers and a powerful light show, this sold out show brings all of Posthumous Silence to life as well as other Sylvan favorites. The DVD?s title is "Posthumous Silence - The Show" and the double live CD is called "Leaving Backstage". The DVD contains the whole concept-album "Posthumous Silence" as a live recording of the concert (approx. 80 minutes). In addition, the DVD contains about 100 minutes of bonus footage such as a live version of the song "Artificial Paradise", two making-of movies, an audio commentary, interviews with the band and complete subtitles of all lyrics in English as well as in German. The double live CD contains the whole "Posthumous Silence Show" and on top of this the second part of the concert which was kind of a "Best Of" setlist through 10 years of Sylvan. Watch out: except for the title "Artificial Paradise" you won?t find the songs of the second live CD on the DVD!
Factory of Dreams – “Poles”
From the music of Project Creation's mastermind and the beautiful voice and talent of Jessica Lehto, is born Factory of Dreams an incursion into a Fantasy World of Gothic Electronic and Progressive Rock music. “Poles” is the new album by Hugo Flores, the debut for Factory of Dreams. Factory of Dreams is another great release from Hugo Flores, it has some of those sonic elements that you loved from Project Creation but has a voice all its own.
RC2 – “Future Awaits”
RC2 was formed in Caracas, Venezuela, during 1999 as a result of two events: the guts and heart to play the style of music that always ruled the soul of the band members, and Radio Clip’s dissolution. Radio Clip was an emblematic band that released four albums in Venezuela between 1988 and 1994, selling thousands of albums and concerts across the country. After a number of changes in personnel and geographic location (now located in Spain), the band was able to write and record new material and even managed to open for Dream Theater to a huge audience and was a resounding success. ”Future Awaits” is the ProgRock Records debut release from RC2. This mixture of raw and classic progressive sounds, traditional Latin American rhythms and instruments and a strong lyrical content documents the band's journey from their country to their new homeland, Spain. From the opening track, it's evident that the sound of RC2 has changed. Their metal edge now collides with more classic sounding prog elements, and the compositions are more sophisticated and complex.
Jupiter Society – “First Contact & Last Warning”
The Chairman of Jupiter Society, Carl Westholm, known from other Swedish acts like Candlemass / Abstract Algebra and Carptree, now releases an epic concept album "First Contact – Last Warning". In collaboration with people like Leif Edling (Candlemass / Abstract Algebra, solo) Mats Leven (Abstract Algebra, Therion, Yngwie Malmsteen) and Declan Burke among many others, he gives us an album with the ambient but symphonic production known from Carptree and with a clear presence of Heavier elements. Big arrangements, small details, different vocalists and musicians specially chosen for each song make it diverse and intriguing. You are given one hour of music and exclusive 20 page booklet. This is an album about some important days in a distant future. Is this First contact or Last Warning?
Snarling Adjective Convention – “Bluewolf Bloodwalk”
Snarling Adjective Convention is an adventurous group of talented artists who are fiercely experimental in their approach to music. Combining elements of avant-garde jazz, metal, dark ambient, psychedelic, prog rock, and funk, the ensemble consists of five instrumentalists who are well known in both experimental and progressive rock circles: Roger Ebner (wind synth, sax), Joe Kopecky (guitars), William Kopecky (basses), Dan Maske (keyboards, trumpet, flute, percussion) and Craig Walkner (drums). Snarling Adjective Convention’s spontaneously composed debut CD “Bluewolf Bloodwalk” is a startling collection of sinister, cutting-edge works of art that bristle with dark energy and virtuoso playing. Invoking the ghosts of 70’s electric-era Miles Davis and gloomy French sound sculptors Shub Niggurath, “Bluewolf Bloodwalk” offers the fearless listener an unforgettable and visionary musical trip.
Direction – “Est”
Canadian band Direction was formed in 2002. After 3 albums released independently, the band signed and released the “Est” album in 2008 on the Unicorn Digital Label. The music of Direction is a blend of each member’s influences: Rush, Yes, Genesis, Pink Floyd, Styx, Led Zeppelin and other great music from the 70’s. Direction is not slave to its influences and delivers a true and honest progressive rock sound. The French lyrics tell a story where fiction meets reality. With this new album, Direction is ready to hit the road and is preparing a series of concerts for 2008.