Archive for Progressive Rock

Marius Tilly – Nebula Rising

Posted in CD, Rock with tags , , , , , on 8th May 2016 by izaforestspirit

Marius Tilly
Nebula Rising
Released 22nd April 2016
Alternative Rock
Released via M.I.G.-Music GmbH

‘Nebula Rising’ is the third album from the German blues rock artist Marius Tilly. His music has been compared to bands such as Robert Plant and Rival Sons. This is a concept album about the universe and outer space. Marius Tilly cites Douglas Adams’s classic science fiction novel ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’ and more specifically states that: “The lyrics are a glance on our world from the outer space.”

Kicking off the album is Dinosaur – an uplifting piece of guitar-driven rock that makes you want to get up and dance along to the catchy chorus. Marius has a very distinctive voice which seems to be perfectly suited for both the blues and rock styles. Take Colder Below for example, his vocals adopt a ballad-like, sombre, bluesy tone to match the slower pace and melancholic sound of the guitars. At the opposite end of the spectrum you get the ‘rocking’ and somewhat more cheerful-sounding songs such as Solar Woman – another tune that I could see myself dancing to if I heard it playing at some rock club or bar.

The space theme continues with song titles such as Orion and Revel outer Space. Orion caught my attention due the slightly progressive-sounding instrumental in the second half of the song. Luckily it’s not long until the guitars pick up the pace and the vocals re-emerge marking the return to the album’s predominant style – alternative rock. Slender Man is a bit of an oddity, being the only song on here to feature some distortion in the guitars and the vocals at the start.

In summary, this album offers a variety of different styles all squeezed inside the “alternative rock” pigeonhole. There’s elements of the blues, classic rock and even progressive rock. I enjoyed certain songs more than others but overall the only consistent feature they all have in common is the vocals. There’s too many changes and inconsistencies in the style and structure for me to appreciate the album as a whole.

3/5
Iza Raittila

Jartse Tuominen – Untold Stories

Posted in CD, Rock with tags , on 12th April 2016 by izaforestspirit

Jartse Tuominen
Untold Stories
Released 18th March 2016
Instrumental Rock with Jazz influences/ Classic Rock
Released via M.I.G Music GmbH

‘Untold Stories’ is the new album from the Finnish rock musician and composer Jartse Tuominen. In addition to his experience as a rock guitarist, Mr. Tuominen has also produced music for movies and TV programs. This particular album was recorded with the help of a few session musicians including Pekka Siistonen on keyboards, drummer Brannen Temple (Dixie Chicks, G3) and bassist Steve Bernal.

So, what we have here are ten tracks of instrumental and predominately guitar-driven rock music with a certain jazz flare. The “jazz” element means that the overall song structure is fairly loose and a lot of the songs resemble a jamming session. The guitar melodies are somewhat unpredictable at times and there’s a sizable amount of experimentation and improvisation in both the pace and the overall style.

The rock ballad Time to Go caught my attention, being one of the slower and more melancholic-sounding songs on here. It features some impressive guitar work and it has that good old, classic rock feel to it without the jazz fusion elements. Then there’s catchy rock’n’roll track Trouble Shuffle which forms a sharp contrast to the other songs on here due to a simple, effective structure and uplifting guitar tunes which leave the listener in a good mood.

In summary, this album is bound to please fans of both classic and progressive rock. Jartse Tuominen has proven that he is a very talented, highly skilled guitar player and composer. I’d think that any decent classic rock bar or lounge would like to add his new songs to their playlist.

4/5
Iza Raittila

Mostly Autumn’s “Winter Tour” kicking off today

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 10th October 2014 by Pieni

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Progressive rockers Mostly Autumn have released a new album in June – already their 11th full-length work. “Dressed In Voices” is a conceptual album, regarding the conscience of a killer. Now it’s time to bring that piece to the road and play it with the spirit that Mostly Autumn got us used to. The tour starts today in St. Helens:

03.10.2014 – The Citadel – St Helens

04.10.2014 – Islington Assembly – London

10.10.2014 – Picturedrome – Holmfirth

17.10.2014 – Legends of Rock Festival – Great Yarmouth

28.11.2014 – Spirit of 66 – Verviers – Belgium

29.11.2014 – De Boerderij – Zoetermeer – Holland

04.12.2014 – Norwich Arts Centre – Norwich

05.12.2014 – Manchester Academy 3 – Manchester

06.12.2014 – Robin 2 – Bilston

07.12.2014 – Renfrew Ferry – Glasgow

12.12.2014 – Hull Fruit – Hull

13.12.2014 – Montgomery Hall – Rotherham

14.12.2014 – The Stables – Milton Keynes

15.12.2014 – The Brook – Southampton

Mostly Autumn on Facebook

Echo Us – XII:XII, A Priori Memoriae

Posted in CD, Rock with tags , on 19th September 2014 by izaforestspirit

Echo Us
XII:XII, A Priori Memoriaé
Released: 15th September (The UK), 19th September (Europe), 7th October 2014 (USA)
Progressive Rock
Released via Dust on The Tracks Records

‘XII:XII, A Priori Memoriaé’ is the 4th album from the Portland-based, American progressive rock band Echo Us. The band was formed back in 2000 as a solo project of Ethan Matthews (also in Greyhaven) and the original sound was more electronica than rock. This album is heavily influenced by 1970s progressive rock and artists such as Mike Oldfield.

The tranquil, acoustic guitar driven opening track ‘Vestige‘ features an interesting mix of what sounds like a church choir, random vocal samples with some clean, melodic vocals towards the end of the song. One thing that puzzled me; the same thing which always puzzles me when it comes to progressive music, is that I didn’t even notice when the song changed. Exordium (Apologue) sounds like a continuation of its predecessor with only a handful of differences. For starters, this track has more keyboard elements and the main vocal style is soft and clean – very much akin to that of most progressive rock bands. The guitar structures are complex but melodic and pleasant to listen if you’re patient enough to tune in for the whole eleven minutes.

This pretty much sets the tone for the rest of the album. As is often the case with progressive rock, the songs on here are complex in structure and there is a definite classical influence as well as an experimental flare evident in music. Some tracks such as Solum Vobis (Only You) have that stereotypical progressive rock feel to them due to the predominance of the guitars, whereas others such as the instrumental Memento lean more towards the classical music direction with the choir in the background. Then there are the tracks which combine these two distinctive styles such as Codicillus (From Far Away) which happily mixes electric guitars, keyboards and prog-rock vocals with a choir, harps and flutes. The aforementioned song also features some experimentation with the guitar which sounds a little odd and out of place at times. Then again apparently that’s not unusual when it comes to progressive rock.

While progressive rock has never really been my kind of music, I can definitely appreciate the effort that went into making this album. Ethan Matthews is clearly a very talented composer and a gifted guitar player. ‘XII:XII, A Priori Memoriaé’ is a complex and extremely well crafted piece of music that will undoubtedly be a great addition to any progressive rock fan’s collection. Personally though I’m just not a fan of this style.

4/5

Iza Raittila

Order Of Voices premiere video for Hand In Hand

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 12th March 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Yorkshire alternative progressive rockers Order Of Voices have released the music video for their latest single Hand In Hand. The single is taken from the band’s album Constancy which is set for release later this year. The single can be heard below.

Hand In Hand was produced by guitarist Ash Homar and mastered by UE Nastasi (AC/DC, Panic! at the Disco, Lamb of God) at Sterling Sound in New York. Vocalist Leigh comments:

We’ve moved on from the first album, distilled what we do to make it stronger in every sense.  We’re very happy with the results and look forward to people hearing it!

Order Of Voices online:

http://orderofvoices.com
http://facebook.com/orderofvoices
http://twitter.com/orderofvoices

 

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Foscor release entire back catalogue digitally

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on 6th March 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Dark metallers Foscor have released their entire back catalogue digitally, including the band’s first three albums: 2004’s Entrance to the Shadows’ Village,  2007’s The Smile of the Sad Ones and 2009’s Groans to the Guilty. Each album includes lyrics and information. For the first month, the albums will be available for free download from this location. The band’s back catalogue is also available for streaming on YouTube.

With over a decade in the music scene, Foscor recently announced that the band’s natural musical progression and development has led to a change in style away from the traditional 90’s Black Metal mixed with other classical and modern extreme styles, for which they became know.  Breaking free from the restrictions the genre places on bands has enabled Foscor to expand their sound to include shades of Doom and Dark Rock, majestic interludes and a healthy flirtation with Prog.  Frontman Fiar is quick to point out though that fans will still recognise the distinctive Foscor style, which the band have not rejected, but have made better, and which will be very much in evidence in the band’s newly completed  fourth full-length album Those Horrors Wither.

Currently in search of a label for Those Horrors Wither, Foscor have chosen a somewhat unusual direction with the guest appearances on the album.  Instead of the expected vocals or instrumental solos, the notable guests have written and performed connecting passages between the tracks.

Foscor online:

http://foscor.com
http://facebook.com/foscor.official
http://soundcloud.com/foscor
http://twitter.com/FOSCOR_Official
http://youtube.com/user/FOSCORbcn
http://foscor.bigcartel.com
http://myspace.com/foscor
http://reverbnation.com/foscor

 

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Pronoid release new single

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 7th November 2013 by Pieni

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Progressive rockers Pronoid have released a new song called “Another Day, Another Kill”. It’s available at the usual places – iTunes, Spotify, Soundcloud – but if you check it out at the latter, you’ll be able to see the lyrics as well: https://soundcloud.com/pronoid/another-day-another-kill

Their latest album “Far From Grey” is also available on Spotify, an album which produced the following video:

Pronoid online:
http://pronoidband.com/
https://www.facebook.com/Pronoid
http://www.youtube.com/user/pronoidband