Edition 105 of Steve Blease’s Heavy Elements is now available as a podcast.

Playlist:

Arjen Anthony Lucassen‘s Star One – Earth That Was
After Forever – Imperfect Tenses
Aina – Revelations
Ayreon – Dawn Of A Million Souls
Winter in Eden – Critical Mass Part 1 – Burdened

Live at 11: Threshold
Watchtower on the Moon (live)
Liberty, Complacency, Dependency (live)
Coda (live)

Alarion – Waves of Destruction pt. I – Rising Tide
Alarion – Waves of Destruction pt. II – Struggle for Survival
Thomas Zwijsen – Perfect Storm

Album of the Week: Headspace – All That You Fear Is Gone
Your Life Will Change
The Day You Return
Road to Supremacy

Maiden uniteD– Die With Your Boots On

This news story was originally published here: http://theprogressiveaspect.net/blog/2017/10/18/daniel-cavanagh-monochrome/

Get Ready for a a very emotional trip through the workings of Daniel Cavanagh’s mind as he explores events and situations that have had a major impact on him over the years, but don’t worry, this is an album of recollection and regret, not remorse or retribution. It is a very mature work indeed that can stand proudly and comfortably next to the back catalogue of his main band, Anathema. It is rather more driven by piano rather than guitar, but even so still shimmers with beauty and elegance and is a very listenable album indeed.

Opening with current single The Exorcist, a brooding slow burner of a song which sets the tone for much of what is to come, it starts with a gentle piano motif before an emotive vocal. It’s a delicate and gentle yet haunting and achingly emotional piece of music with gently strummed acoustic guitar in the mix to hold it all together before drums are added as piano repeats the refrain of “Can you Feel Me? Can you See Me?” in a more urgent manner, very angsty and emotive and very good indeed. A sweeping instrumental part follows, taking the song away to somewhere else and adding real intensity without detracting from what precedes it. It’s a remarkable statement if intent.

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The Exorcist is followed by This Music which is rather more electronic in form, slowly introducing the shared vocals with Anneke Van Giersbergen which, whilst different to those of Anathema’s Lee Douglas, certainly fulfil a similar role and sound. This track is another that builds in intensity and sound with a concise yet worthy guitar solo supporting matters. Its a brief and welcome track, followed by the brooding wonder of Soho, again featuring Anneke’s fine voice. The second verse features Daniel alone with piano and then Anneke returns, singing “I feel you around me” as the sound bursts forth with a hitherto unvoiced intensity and a chugging riff. It’s stirring stuff, hypnotic and intense in equal measure. After this part the song scales back to more solo piano and other orchestrations, becoming softer again as it enters the final stages, the vocal refrain repeated to sombre effect.

Whilst this is an intense song it is ultimately Hopeful and optimistic in outlook, and I feel that Monochrome possibly works best as a late night album; lights down, glass of wine or whisky, whatever, an introspective sort of album but very impressive nonetheless with some lovely crafted music on offer. It is not showy or pretentious but above all it is worthwhile and hugely satisfying.

Silent Flight of the Raven Winged Hours follows and is largely piano driven until the 4:30 mark when a lone synthesizer line is introduced, very delicately but effectively, as the song builds in intensity and urgency. It shows rare restraint in avoiding bursting forth and the controlled intensity is very well handled before the lone piano voice is heard again. Few musicians can or do take the gamble of not overplaying and letting the power of the music shine through for itself, and this is commendable as guitar is added to the mix for the last few moments of the song. This is a masterclass of understatement that could so easily have become an overblown and surging monster. Instead we are treated to a piece of music that has natural peaks and troughs, light and dark balanced in perfect harmony, a very impressive piece. What follows is a brief but effective acoustic guitar and violin piece that works well in creating a different vibe, followed by the familiar and more traditionally Anathema sounding Oceans Of Time, and yes, we are on familiar ground here with a song that would have fitted easily into either Distant Satellites or The Optimist. Again Anneke’s voice plays the Lee Douglas part to perfection, being both familiar and yet subtly different at the same time. A wonderful performance by all concerned.

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I have to say that the more I hear this majestic album the more I like it and it will definitely be in my Top Ten for this year. I’m sure that on this album Daniel has dug deep and faced down several of his own demons, emergingd into the light a better and more positive man than before. It has no doubt been cathartic for him and he has produced an album of deep emotions, hope and beauty, he is to be applauded for his tastefulness and restraint, and for the stirring music herein.

The final track, Some Dreams Come True, brings things to a suitably satisfying conclusion with an insistent piano riff, orchestrations and sounds of the ocean creating a very restful and delicate piece that finishes things off beautifully. With a baby laughing and seagulls calling it is a moody and evocative piece that show that hope ultimately triumphs over all else.

Monochrome is a total triumph for Daniel Cavanagh, simply wonderful stuff and I recommend it very highly.

TRACK LISTING
01. The Exorcist (6:47)
02. This Music (4:53)
03. Soho (7:42)
04. Silent Flight Of The Raven Winged Hours (9:13)
05. Dawn (2:47)
06. Oceans Of Time (8:15)
07. Some Dreams Come True (8:37)

Total Time – 48:14

MUSICIANS
Daniel Cavanagh – Piano, Keyboards, Guitars & Vocals
Anneke Van Giersbergen – Vocals
Anna Phoebe – Violin

ADDITIONAL INFO
Record Label: Kscope
Catalogue#: KSCOPE281
Date of Release: 13th October 2017

LINKS
Daniel Cavanagh – Daniel Cavanagh Kscope Page | Facebook

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This news story was originally published here: https://www.prog-sphere.com/specials/robert-plant-about-refusing-led-zeppelin-reunion/
ROBERT PLANS Talks Why He Refuses LED ZEPPELIN Reunion

Robert Plant has once again shot down the idea of Led Zeppelin reunion, telling The Telegraph:

You can’t ever really go back. It’s tough enough repeating yourself with something that’s a year old, never mind 49 years old. I’ve got to keep moving.

Plant also talked about the impact recent deaths of rock musicians made on him, saying:

How many voices are disappearing? The contributions to our time of listening and wonder. There’s always a trip going to say goodbye.

Maybe that’s how people think about me! ‘Fucking hell! Better go and see Planty! How much longer can he keep it up?’

Last month, Robert acknowledged that the band’s 2007 reunion was “magnificent,” telling Rolling Stone:

It was magnificent.

We hit a home run that night, which is something that we were really fearful of. There was probably more riding on that than we would care to believe.

Our performance was crucial, but we could reproduce sound in a much more reliable way, so we could be kickass, and sound kickass.

Some of those horrific gigs way back were lacking in quality.

This news story was originally published here: http://www.prog-sphere.com/specials/robert-plant-about-refusing-led-zeppelin-reunion/
ROBERT PLANS Talks Why He Refuses LED ZEPPELIN Reunion

Robert Plant has once again shot down the idea of Led Zeppelin reunion, telling The Telegraph:

You can’t ever really go back. It’s tough enough repeating yourself with something that’s a year old, never mind 49 years old. I’ve got to keep moving.

Plant also talked about the impact recent deaths of rock musicians made on him, saying:

How many voices are disappearing? The contributions to our time of listening and wonder. There’s always a trip going to say goodbye.

Maybe that’s how people think about me! ‘Fucking hell! Better go and see Planty! How much longer can he keep it up?’

Last month, Robert acknowledged that the band’s 2007 reunion was “magnificent,” telling Rolling Stone:

It was magnificent.

We hit a home run that night, which is something that we were really fearful of. There was probably more riding on that than we would care to believe.

Our performance was crucial, but we could reproduce sound in a much more reliable way, so we could be kickass, and sound kickass.

Some of those horrific gigs way back were lacking in quality.

Northern Star   12th Oct  2017

 

Northern Star Pallas Theme

  • The Room – Bedlam
  • Eloy – Madhouse
  • Constructs – Signals
  • Meshuggah – Sane
  • Queen – I’m Going Slightly Mad
  • Charlie Cawood – garden of the mind
  • Iron maiden – Can I play with madness
  • Gong – The Mad monk
  • Marillion – Chelsea Monday
  • Twelfth Night – we Are Sane
  • Credo – Insane
  • Saul Blease – Blue Monday
  • Frank Zappa – Suicide Chump
  • David Bowie – cracked Actor
  • BJH – Suicide?
  • Hedfuzy – lost Star
  • Satellite – Dreams
  • Black Sabbath – Am I going Insane
  • Ozzy – Suicide Solution
  • Manic Street preachers – Suicide is painless?
  • Jimi Hendrix Exp – Manic depression
  • Hawkwind – Reefer Madness
  • Pink Floyd – Shine on you Crazy Diamond

 

Tunein on http://tunein.com/radio/Progzilla-Radio-s242911/

The Google app or the Apple App

Repeat Shows Tuesdays 00.00am bst & 3.00pm bst

Podcasts of all the shows are available here

http://www.progzilla.com/category/podcast/northern-star/feed/

Subscribe to the show here

http://www.progzilla.com/shows/northern-star/

If you have an requests or ideas about shows

Or anything else for that matter?

Contact me on Emma@progzilla.com

This news story was originally published here: http://theprogressiveaspect.net/blog/2017/10/17/trojan-horse-fukushima-surfer-boys/

Album title of the year? Most probably. Salford noisy urchins Trojan Horse arrive at a canter with their second album, Fukushima Surfer Boys, announcing an eerie electronic intent with opener GRAD, an inspection of the hull of the craft while drifting through deep space that develops an anthemic heft on the back of a jagged Manzanera-esque guitar riff. This is going to be a whole different kettle of frogs to the rather splendid debut The World Turned Upside Down, methinks. You really should read that review, it’s far better written than this nonsense!

The Ebb c/w Solotron, with bass by Pete Trewevas, is the sound of a triumphant Yoshimi, having seen off the pink robots, arriving on the crest of an irradiated wave on Fukushima beach, immune to the insidious threat of gamma rays, protected purely by an unstoppable joie de vivre and a killer tune. At the end all is calm as Yoshimi surveys the destruction from an isolated vantage point on the beach, deserted except for a gaggle of young Salford surfer boys with a death wish, who greet our heroine with grins and beer. They continue in the manner of The Flaming Lips, adding 10CC as backing singers for the gloriously daft anti-austerity pop anthem How You Gonna Get By?, before Yoshimi disappears in a puff of smoke as the album lurches on down a lead-lined corridor to sample all manner of cakes, pills, and influences.

If you listen carefully during The Modern Apothecary you can hear punctured Aqualung riffs tackling Cardiacs and XTC playing ancient heavy metal while Dylan from The Magic Roundabout rolls the next one. Some of that is no doubt down to the inspired contributions of Doves’ Jimi Goodwin, and Knifeworld/Gong/Guapo guitar slinger and snooker DJ assistant Kavus Torabi. Watch you don’t put out either your knees or your neck while frugging furiously to this number. Trust me, I’m a vet, which is why I get to examine this Horse.

There are elements of almost any band you can think of in this glorious cauldron of a record, but what comes out the other end of the sausage maker is entirely and only Trojan Horse. None of these songs are pointlessly long, and not one of them meanders aimlessly, or runs out of gas halfway through, nope, they all deliver a sweet little kick up the ’arris. This is the kind of progressive rock only a punk band from a grimy uber industrial estate would make. Musically, their marvellously kitchen sink approach… there goes a bit of early Brian Eno!…combined with singers whose surprisingly otherworldly elfin tones given their wild appearance, together inescapably recalls the sci-fi oddball approach of aforementioned The Flaming Lips, but with a decidedly unique twist. You can hear modern trip hop in The Wooden Wall that gets like Karl Hyde doing the Viennese Waltz with Flying Lotus under a technicolour sky criss-crossed by commuters on flying segways.

Junk #3 and Junk #1 take us elsewhere, away from any preconceptions, reverbed skysaw guitar punctuating an odd cryptic lyric that the PR people won’t let me see. The dark and creepy Sickle Cell Orphan might well be making a serious point, but struggling as I do with lyric enunciation my interpretation will have to remain impressionistic. Whatever the gist is, I can’t tell, but I’m sure Philip K. Dick would understand. This is one of the longer numbers, and it goes through a few scripted changes in its succinct six and-a-bit minutes, and relies on deft ensemble playing rather than flash indulgence, and most importantly contains a decent hook, while obviously given its length, never over-stretches its ideas.

The burgeoning and broiling electronica that has informed the majority of this odd but beguiling record rallies once more to the fore on an admirably strange tune entitled The Shapes, which is maybe what Kraftwerk would sound like had they started in 2010. Fukushima Surfer Boys ends with the tub thumping Monodaddy, a dark alt-pop song through which the singer intones “I wanna see my daddy” in a deadpan style, reprising the earlier song of that name, and which in my mind’s eye should have a menacing video à la Aphex Twin’s Windowlicker. After all that the listener can only reflect on what a long, strange trip it’s been. I hope they take this out on the road, I’ll be there.

This band along with Knifeworld, North Atlantic Oscillation, and a few other acts this side of The Pond are taking U.K. music to new places, and to be topical, they are all surfing a small but perfectly formed resurgent wave of progressive rock. Whilst I may have listed all manner of historical pointers in this review, Trojan Horse live by the maxim that the past is a place of reference, not residence. The band’s nicely pretentious and no doubt tongue-in-cheek motto is “Omnia mutantur, nos et mutamur in illis” – “All things change and we change with them”, and you can’t say fairer than that. Not for this Horse the endless recycling of a pastoral rose-tinted past that never was under the all-pervading influence of the original prog giants, oh no. Rather they are all facing the future with a confidence that can only see great things developing, nay progressing, further down the line. Pass the nose bag, Henry!

TRACK LISTING
01. GRAD (1:41)
02. The Ebb c/w Solotron (10:36)
03. How You Gonna Get By? (6:12)
04. Herbie Hancock (4:02)
05. The Modern Apothecary (6:33)
06. The Castle Of… (2:26)
07. I Wanna See My Daddy (5:14)
08. UVB-76 (2:06)
09. Fukushima Surfer Boys (3:42)
10. The Wooden Wall (3:13)
11. Junk #3 (1:58)
12. Junk #1 (3:21)
13. Sickle Cell Orphan (6:27)
14. Isotron (1:33)
15. The Shapes (7:20)
16. Monodaddy (4:53)

Total Time – 71:20

MUSICIANS
Nick Duke – Guitar, Bass, Synths, Drums, Vocals
Eden Duke – Keyboards, Synths, Bass, Vocals
Lawrence Duke – Bass, Guitar, Drums Vocals
Joe Wood – Drums
Danny the Red – Production, Drums, Synths, Keyboards, Guitar
~ With:
Pete Trewevas – Bass (track 2)
Jimi Goodwin – Guitar, Vocals (track 5)
Kavus Torabi – Guitar (track 5)

ADDITIONAL INFO
Record Label: Bad Elephant Music
Catalogue#: BEM051
Date of Release: 13th October 2017

LINKS
Trojan Horse – Facebook | Bandcamp
If you want, although I can’t imagine why, you can buy this album on cassette…what on earth is that all about?! Mind you, they do make rather wonderful if environmentally unfriendly firelighters, it has to be said.

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This news story was originally published here: https://www.prog-sphere.com/news/a-perfect-circle-the-doomed-single/
A PERFECT CIRCLE Return with "The Doomed" Single

A Perfect Circle have released the new song, “The Doomed.” The track is the first music to be heard from the multi-platinum outfit’s highly anticipated 2018 full-length. Hear it below.

Fourteen years have passed since we released ‘eMOTIVe,’” said Maynard James Keenan. “A new release is long overdue. In light of this current difficult and polarized social, spiritual and political climate, we artist types need to open our big mouths and share the light a little louder.

Years of life experience has brought our music to this moment,” added Billy Howerdel. “We know where we came from. Deeply connected to the path we’re on.

A Perfect Circle recently announced they had signed a worldwide recording deal with BMG and are in the studio working with producer Dave Sardy on the follow-up to 2004’s eMOTIVe.

“The Doomed” arrives as A Perfect Circle kick off the second leg of their first North American tour in six years, launching on October 21 at the Aftershock festival.

Purchase or listen to “The Doomed” at this link: http://smarturl.it/TheDoomed.

Tour dates: 

October 21 Sacramento, CA Aftershock Festival

October 23 Colorado Springs, CO Broadmoor World Arena

October 25 Albuquerque, NM Tingley Coliseum

October 26 El Paso, TX Don Haskins Center

October 28 Toluca, Mexico Knotfest Mexico

October 30 Knoxville, TN Thompson-Boling Arena

November 1 Fairfax, VA EagleBank Arena

November 2 Brooklyn, NY Barclays Center

November 4 Reading, PA Santander Arena

November 5 Uncasville, CT Mohegan Sun Arena

November 7 Camden, NJ BB&T Pavilion

November 8 Boston, MA Agganis Arena

November 10 Portland, ME Cross Insurance Center

November 11 Albany, NY Times Union Center

November 12 Syracuse, NY The OnCenter Arena

November 14 Montreal, QC Place Bell

November 15 Toronto, ON Air Canada Centre

November 17 Pittsburgh, PA Petersen Events Center

November 18 Cleveland, OH Wolstein Center

November 19 Highland Heights, KY BB&T Arena

November 21 Detroit, MI Fox Theatre

November 22 Grand Rapids, MI The DeltaPlex Arena

November 24 Chicago, IL UIC Pavilion

November 25 St. Paul, MN Xcel Energy Center

November 28 Spokane, WA Spokane Arena

November 30 Vancouver, BC PNE Coliseum

December 1 Seattle, WA Key Arena

December 2 Portland, OR Veteran’s Memorial Coliseum

December 4 Eugene, OR Matthew Knight Arena

The band’s current line-up is Maynard James Keenan (Tool, Puscifer), Billy Howerdel (Ashes Divide), James Iha (Tinted Windows, ex-Smashing Pumpkins), Jeff Friedl (Puscifer, The Beta Machine) and Matt McJunkins (Eagles of Death Metal, The Beta Machine).

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A Perfect Circle - The Doomed