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This news story was originally published here: https://www.prog-sphere.com/interviews/roman-spektor-interview/

Israeli singer-songwriter Roman Spektor combines elements of industrial, prog rock and experimental pop, and his debut album ‘Functionality‘ is a perfect amalgamation of the mentioned styles. Spektor was recently featured on our Progotronics compilation, and he answered our questionnaire about the album, his mission and more.

Define the mission of your project.

For me it seems somewhat like a typical solo debut album – I wanted to share a glimpse of my world and experiences. But I also wanted to explore my creativity and push it to various directions and limits. I think the fact that different listeners like absolutely different songs and genres is an advantage.

For instance, “Checkbox” is a protest song and is more on the grunge/hard rock side. “Thank You Father” is about family drama. “Look For…” is a story of a broken heart where I explored experimental pop. The song “Docks”, a lucid dream is described in very gloomy minor scales, and “Cut the Cool Air” is an optimistic love song.

Tell me about the creative process that informed your recent album “Functionality” and the themes it captures.

It all began with the will to explore sounds and rhythms that I wanted to hear more, as a listener. I started by playing around with one of my self-built instruments – a merge between a hurdy-gurdy and an acoustic guitar (which I ended up not using at all in this album), but I also experimented with pre-recorded samples. This eventually became the song “Look For…”. After completing only a verse, I moved on to creating another song. I tried to combine a soft melancholic melody, with cajon drumming that I recorded with a ribbon microphone mostly made of wood, which I made a few years ago. So, this one eventually became “Thank You Father”. I started each song differently, but almost always working on the music and the lyrics simultaneously, and I merged them later on.

Afterwards, I made gradual changes to both music and lyrics until I was satisfied or close to being satisfied with the results. This process was applied to all of the songs, with “Tiny Virtual Mouths” being the last song I recorded.

As for the production – I made drastic changes throughout the whole process. Some songs initially had more electronic sounds in them, such as “Checkbox”, which I replaced the drum-machine sounds with an acoustic kit in the end. I recorded, edited and mixed all tracks.

As for the themes of the album, they include my view on: cultural behaviors, love, loss, personal struggles and day to day life.

Roman Spektor - Functionality

What is the message you are trying to give with “Functionality”? 

The album is all about the efforts you invest in life: Throughout  all the tracks, actions and decisions are being investigated. With “Functionality”, my attempt was to deliver a strong sense of real life situations in recent times among family and society, and the possible outcomes.

How did you document the music while it was being formulated?

Recording and performing on my own, I concentrated on the work itself and rarely documented any of the sessions. I did post some short videos and photographs of the making process on my social pages. But they are far from reflecting all of the work that has been actually done.

Is the dynamic flow of the pieces carefully architected?

I was fourteen (and it was fourteen years ago, actually) the first time I ever produced anything on my own, and it was a hip hop track. Naturally, ever since my inspirations varied and have been enriched. In “Functionality”, one sometimes hears unexpected surprises that interrupt the flow of the song – but actually it is an interpretation of dynamic levels/harmonies/rhythms. The song order is also set in a way that the energetic level always maintains highs and lows.

Describe the approach to recording the album.

Working as an audio engineer for a while – didn’t leave me any other choice but to get it done as neatly as possible. It was tricky to record myself and play or sing at the same time, but also convenient to do so at home. I have a small recording studio that I crafted and adjusted acoustically. But other than the traditional methods, I experimented and recorded sound effect ideas, for example: In “Checkbox”, there are computer keyboard typing sounds; In “Binary”, there are growls in the backing vocals that sound more like haunting whispers in the way they are mixed together with the lead vocals. Drums and some percussion instruments were recorded with MIDI devices.

I also recorded Gali Spektor’s (my wife) mesmerizing saxophone parts in “Functionality” and “Selling Doors” and Didi’s (her sister) haunting vocal parts in “Look For…”. Also, Gali is the person who made this whole thing possible. She didn’t just help me, she was an active consultant for almost everything in the process.

How long “Functionality” was in the making?

Grossly, it took me three and a half years from the point when I recorded the first verse of “Look For…” to the end of the mixing process. A lot of exciting and wonderful things happened in my personal life during this period of time, and I also keep a day-job which is not music related.

Which bands or artists influenced your work on the release?

Iamthemorning, Bent Knee, Anekdoten, Antimatter, Kevin Gilbert, Katatonia, Leprous, Steven Wilson, The Mars Volta, A Perfect Circle, Riverside, Sóley, Röyksopp, Soulwax, Opeth, Depeche Mode, Air, Massive Attack, Radiohead, Beck, Björk, Alice in Chains, Queens of the Stone Age, David Bowie, Fever Ray, Kings of Convenience, Korn, System of a Down, Infected Mushroom, Matt Uelmen.

What is your view on technology in music?

When it comes to music, technology is simply underrated – even for the most futuristic-sounding bands and artists. The film industry has used much more advantages of the updated sound design capabilities. As an artist, you can now be more dynamic than ever before in terms of volume levels and spectral characteristics, and it would still sound conventional.

In terms of marketing – it feels like we had to wait ages before the streaming applications became popular. On the down side – of course, anybody can share their music now and the amount of published music is unimaginable. Still, as a listener it’s still much more convenient to just consume the promoted, top tracks in playlists that I’m more likely to trust. Nobody wants to spend time on listening to music they’re just okay with. The struggle to stand out remains, but the rules have been changed.

Do you see your music as serving a purpose beyond music?

That is the hope of anyone who publishes their own art, isn’t it? Otherwise artists wouldn’t create their own music. By expressing myself I want people to relate to my music, to see some reflection of their lives, and sometimes just to surprise and inspire.

What are your plans for the future?

Six months before the coronavirus pandemic broke out and locked us all down, I started a band and we were playing songs from the album together. Hopefully, we soon will be able to restart our rehearsals and perform on stage for the first time. Afterwards, we might record new songs together as a band rather than a solo project. Currently the band members are: Shay Kintzlinger (drums), Itamar Oz (guitars), and Amit Pozner (bass).

The post ROMAN SPEKTOR: Unlimited Creativity appeared first on Prog Sphere.

This news story was originally published here: https://www.prog-sphere.com/interviews/cause-17-interview/

International rock act Cause 17 put out their debut album ‘Bricks and Bones‘ last year, and the band has been featured on our Progotronics compilation this month. Guitarist Walter Hüsstege spoke for Prog Sphere about the release and more.

Define the mission of Cause 17.

Our mission is first of all a creative one. Bringing ideas and thoughts come to live in our music. Sharing it is another of what you can call a mission. We like to share our music with everyone. But it’s also a personal journey; learning about writing, composing music.

Tell me about the creative process that informed your recent album “Bricks and Bones” and the themes it captures.

We wanted to make a concept album. We picked up the story a long time ago. When we were looking for a theme to write about, this story popped up, it sort of came up naturally. The theme of the album is not a happy one. The songs are about neglect, abuse, being alone. It tells a story about a boy and girl in trouble, sharing that on-line and committing themselves to a suicide together. In a way it’s also a complaint against our modern world; missing things like this,

What is the message you are trying to give with “Bricks and Bones”?

Look around and don’t ignore.

How did you document the music while it was being formulated?

We first wrote the story in headlines and did the same with ideas about how the music should sound like. From that point on we worked our way through al songs on the album.

Sharing ideas and recording small parts. Sometimes just a guitar and a drumpart. From that point building bit by bit.

Cause 17 - Bricks & Bones

Is the dynamic flow of the pieces carefully architected?

Yes, and that’s a very delicate proces because ‘Bricks and Bones’ is a story with different moods. Thats maybe a strange way to expres this, but listen to the album and you’ll now what we mean.

Describe the approach to recording the album.

To us it was really important all the songs one the album would somehow sound as a whole. So we tried, though the songs are very different, to look for something in common. And we think we managed quite well.

How long “Bricks and Bones” was in the making?

About two years I guess. The idea existed for years. Now was the time to do it. Writing lyrics and the music took about a year. Recording, mixing mastering took about six months

Which bands or artists influenced your work on the release?

We are influenced by a lot of different style bands, progressive and grunge bands such as; Rush, Soundgarden, Yes, Pearl Jam, Queensryche and Perfect Circle.

What is your view on technology in music?

For us it’s very useful; enabling us to record at home / experimenting / bringing ideas to live in a way we could never afford to do in a recording studio. This works really wel for us; we can add layers and instruments that otherwise wouldn’t be at our disposal. Make more complex / thought out arrangements for our songs. We realise our skills are limited, so we still use a recording studio for mixing and mastering. We use technology as a tool but don’t want to let it prevail, after all we are instrumentalists, not computer programmers.

Do you see your music as serving a purpose beyond music?

It’s not our main goal, but if we can bring our message (especially with this album), to the people, it would be a welcome side effect.

What are your plans for the future?

We want to continu to write and record music. Want to continu to evolve in our composing and recording skills. And hopefully reach a wider audience, maybe supported with some audiovisual media, such as we already did for two songs of the album. And maybe, someday we can bring our music to the stage…

I would like to point out that you can find our music on all major streaming platforms.

Follow Cause 17 on Facebook.

The post CAUSE 17: Story with Different Moods appeared first on Prog Sphere.

This news story was originally published here: http://www.prog-sphere.com/interviews/cause-17-interview/

International rock act Cause 17 put out their debut album ‘Bricks and Bones‘ last year, and the band has been featured on our Progotronics compilation this month. Guitarist Walter Hüsstege spoke for Prog Sphere about the release and more.

Define the mission of Cause 17.

Our mission is first of all a creative one. Bringing ideas and thoughts come to live in our music. Sharing it is another of what you can call a mission. We like to share our music with everyone. But it’s also a personal journey; learning about writing, composing music.

Tell me about the creative process that informed your recent album “Bricks and Bones” and the themes it captures.

We wanted to make a concept album. We picked up the story a long time ago. When we were looking for a theme to write about, this story popped up, it sort of came up naturally. The theme of the album is not a happy one. The songs are about neglect, abuse, being alone. It tells a story about a boy and girl in trouble, sharing that on-line and committing themselves to a suicide together. In a way it’s also a complaint against our modern world; missing things like this,

What is the message you are trying to give with “Bricks and Bones”?

Look around and don’t ignore.

How did you document the music while it was being formulated?

We first wrote the story in headlines and did the same with ideas about how the music should sound like. From that point on we worked our way through al songs on the album.

Sharing ideas and recording small parts. Sometimes just a guitar and a drumpart. From that point building bit by bit.

Cause 17 - Bricks & Bones

Is the dynamic flow of the pieces carefully architected?

Yes, and that’s a very delicate proces because ‘Bricks and Bones’ is a story with different moods. Thats maybe a strange way to expres this, but listen to the album and you’ll now what we mean.

Describe the approach to recording the album.

To us it was really important all the songs one the album would somehow sound as a whole. So we tried, though the songs are very different, to look for something in common. And we think we managed quite well.

How long “Bricks and Bones” was in the making?

About two years I guess. The idea existed for years. Now was the time to do it. Writing lyrics and the music took about a year. Recording, mixing mastering took about six months

Which bands or artists influenced your work on the release?

We are influenced by a lot of different style bands, progressive and grunge bands such as; Rush, Soundgarden, Yes, Pearl Jam, Queensryche and Perfect Circle.

What is your view on technology in music?

For us it’s very useful; enabling us to record at home / experimenting / bringing ideas to live in a way we could never afford to do in a recording studio. This works really wel for us; we can add layers and instruments that otherwise wouldn’t be at our disposal. Make more complex / thought out arrangements for our songs. We realise our skills are limited, so we still use a recording studio for mixing and mastering. We use technology as a tool but don’t want to let it prevail, after all we are instrumentalists, not computer programmers.

Do you see your music as serving a purpose beyond music?

It’s not our main goal, but if we can bring our message (especially with this album), to the people, it would be a welcome side effect.

What are your plans for the future?

We want to continu to write and record music. Want to continu to evolve in our composing and recording skills. And hopefully reach a wider audience, maybe supported with some audiovisual media, such as we already did for two songs of the album. And maybe, someday we can bring our music to the stage…

I would like to point out that you can find our music on all major streaming platforms.

Follow Cause 17 on Facebook.

The post CAUSE 17: Story with Different Moods appeared first on Prog Sphere.

This news story was originally published here: https://www.prog-sphere.com/uncategorized/spinal-slot-rocking-online-casinos/

If you are a developer of online casino games in the 2020s, one of the most important areas to look at is branding. We don’t need to do marketing 101 here, but let’s just say that your game will be more alluring if it has some recognisable crossover appeal. As such, developers have been creating games based on movies, tv shows, books, video games – anything in the cultural sphere – knowing that it offers a two-pronged approach to attracting players.

It’s been well-documented on this site that there is a slew of rock-themed casino games: Jimi Hendrix, Guns N’ Roses, KISS, Ozzy Osbourne, Motorhead and many other acts have inspired casino games. These are officially licenced games that can be played with Instadebit payments at mansioncasino.com, and they offer something beyond simple branding. The music, the imagery and the attitude of the artists are infused into the game.

And yet, arguably the best example of rock-themed slots available at Mansion and elsewhere is Blueprint Gaming’s Spinal Tap slot. A big and bold game based on the legendary comedy rockumentary hit casinos last year, and it’s been a smash hit. You rarely see a casino game so ambitious in its design, nor as far-reaching in its creativity. That’s not to say the slot is perfect, and we will point out some flaws later. But if you like casino games and rock music, then Spinal Tap is a great choice.

Spinal Tap underscores Blueprint’s rise

A note, first of all, on the developer. Blueprint isn’t the biggest player in the market, but it has clawed its way to the top by focusing on high-quality games with a creative spark. A good example is the Thundercats slot. Blueprint took the iconic 80s cartoon and delivered an impressive slot game with superb graphics and fun bits of gameplay. Other smash hits for the developer have included Ted, Vikings Unleashed, Primal and Rome: Rise of an Empire, all of which are stuffed full of imaginative bonus games and fun special features

Getting back to Spinal Tap, then. What makes it so special? For a start, it’s about how the game looks, something that should not be underestimated when it comes to the casino experience. Spinal Tap has video game-quality graphics, which are especially impressive when the game flips from its standard mode to “Rock Mode”, which expands the reels to create over 2,000 ways to win. The slicing of video footage into the game is also excellent, and you won’t fail to be impressed with some of the 3D graphics.

Game boasts huge number of bonus features

But the biggest attraction of Spinal Tap slot is undoubtedly its depth of bonus games and special features. If you consider slots to be simple linear games, then this will certainly shock you. Spinal Tap has seven unique bonus features, including the World Tour Bonus where you can win up to 10,000 x your bet. Coupled with that, there are the special modifying features in Rock Mode that can lead to massive wins. You could literally spend hours playing the game, and yet still find some new feature when coming back to play at a later date.

Body

As we mentioned, we’ll provide some criticism for balance. While Spinal Tap boasts bigger payout potential than the average slot game, it is also a high variance game. In short, that means there is volatile quality to it. Approach it, therefore, with the attitude that you could lose your balance, making the big wins all the sweeter if they come. We should point out, though, that Spinal Tap has an excellent RTP of 96.92%, putting it in the tier of most generous slots in terms of returns to the player.

So, there you have it. Arguably the best rock-based slot around is a game based on a fictional rock band. The sounds, graphics and gameplay, however, really go all the way up to 11 on this one. One of the most enjoyable games created in the last decade, but make sure you play responsibly.

 

 

The post Why The Spinal Slot Is Rocking at Online Casinos appeared first on Prog Sphere.

This news story was originally published here: http://www.prog-sphere.com/uncategorized/spinal-slot-rocking-online-casinos/

If you are a developer of online casino games in the 2020s, one of the most important areas to look at is branding. We don’t need to do marketing 101 here, but let’s just say that your game will be more alluring if it has some recognisable crossover appeal. As such, developers have been creating games based on movies, tv shows, books, video games – anything in the cultural sphere – knowing that it offers a two-pronged approach to attracting players.

It’s been well-documented on this site that there is a slew of rock-themed casino games: Jimi Hendrix, Guns N’ Roses, KISS, Ozzy Osbourne, Motorhead and many other acts have inspired casino games. These are officially licenced games that can be played with Instadebit payments at mansioncasino.com, and they offer something beyond simple branding. The music, the imagery and the attitude of the artists are infused into the game.

And yet, arguably the best example of rock-themed slots available at Mansion and elsewhere is Blueprint Gaming’s Spinal Tap slot. A big and bold game based on the legendary comedy rockumentary hit casinos last year, and it’s been a smash hit. You rarely see a casino game so ambitious in its design, nor as far-reaching in its creativity. That’s not to say the slot is perfect, and we will point out some flaws later. But if you like casino games and rock music, then Spinal Tap is a great choice.

Spinal Tap underscores Blueprint’s rise

A note, first of all, on the developer. Blueprint isn’t the biggest player in the market, but it has clawed its way to the top by focusing on high-quality games with a creative spark. A good example is the Thundercats slot. Blueprint took the iconic 80s cartoon and delivered an impressive slot game with superb graphics and fun bits of gameplay. Other smash hits for the developer have included Ted, Vikings Unleashed, Primal and Rome: Rise of an Empire, all of which are stuffed full of imaginative bonus games and fun special features

Getting back to Spinal Tap, then. What makes it so special? For a start, it’s about how the game looks, something that should not be underestimated when it comes to the casino experience. Spinal Tap has video game-quality graphics, which are especially impressive when the game flips from its standard mode to “Rock Mode”, which expands the reels to create over 2,000 ways to win. The slicing of video footage into the game is also excellent, and you won’t fail to be impressed with some of the 3D graphics.

Game boasts huge number of bonus features

But the biggest attraction of Spinal Tap slot is undoubtedly its depth of bonus games and special features. If you consider slots to be simple linear games, then this will certainly shock you. Spinal Tap has seven unique bonus features, including the World Tour Bonus where you can win up to 10,000 x your bet. Coupled with that, there are the special modifying features in Rock Mode that can lead to massive wins. You could literally spend hours playing the game, and yet still find some new feature when coming back to play at a later date.

Body

As we mentioned, we’ll provide some criticism for balance. While Spinal Tap boasts bigger payout potential than the average slot game, it is also a high variance game. In short, that means there is volatile quality to it. Approach it, therefore, with the attitude that you could lose your balance, making the big wins all the sweeter if they come. We should point out, though, that Spinal Tap has an excellent RTP of 96.92%, putting it in the tier of most generous slots in terms of returns to the player.

So, there you have it. Arguably the best rock-based slot around is a game based on a fictional rock band. The sounds, graphics and gameplay, however, really go all the way up to 11 on this one. One of the most enjoyable games created in the last decade, but make sure you play responsibly.

 

 

The post Why The Spinal Slot Is Rocking at Online Casinos appeared first on Prog Sphere.

This news story was originally published here: http://www.prog-sphere.com/news/steven-wilson-album-postponed/

Steven Wilson’s forthcoming sixth album has been postponed due to issues arising from the current Coronavirus situation. Originally due for release on 12th June 2020, The Future Bites will now be released on 29th of January, 2021. 

Wilson commented:

As with many of my albums, The Future Bites is not just about the music, it’s a high concept project which involves design, artwork, video and a tour production, all on a grander scale than anything I’ve attempted before. However, due to the pandemic, there are unprecedented challenges, ranging from manufacturing issues (particularly in relation to the elaborate deluxe edition) and the uncertainty facing record stores as the coronavirus forces them to close their doors, to being unable to shoot most of the video material I planned. It’s therefore with a very heavy heart that I reluctantly need to postpone the release of The Future Bites until such time everything can happen as intended. This will now be January next year, with new music and video starting to be issued again around October.  In the meantime the pre-order page for the various editions of the album will remain online. Myself, management, agent and promoters are monitoring the situation regarding the live shows scheduled for this autumn. Should events change we will let everyone know as soon as we do. 

I understand that this may be disappointing news, and to no one more that myself, believe me.  I worked on the music and background of this project for the last two years and was thrilled to finally be able to launch it. The response to the Personal Shopper track released last month has been phenomenal, and I was looking forward to unveiling more over the next few months in the build up to the release of the album. But alas due to the current circumstances it was not to be.  

I sincerely send everyone reading this a message of good health, and I hope that one day in the not too distant future we can once again focus on things like music, which even if it isn’t strictly essential seems to somehow makes life more worthwhile. SW x”

The post STEVEN WILSON’s New Album Postponed for January 2021 appeared first on Prog Sphere.

This news story was originally published here: https://www.prog-sphere.com/news/steven-wilson-album-postponed/

Steven Wilson’s forthcoming sixth album has been postponed due to issues arising from the current Coronavirus situation. Originally due for release on 12th June 2020, The Future Bites will now be released on 29th of January, 2021. 

Wilson commented:

As with many of my albums, The Future Bites is not just about the music, it’s a high concept project which involves design, artwork, video and a tour production, all on a grander scale than anything I’ve attempted before. However, due to the pandemic, there are unprecedented challenges, ranging from manufacturing issues (particularly in relation to the elaborate deluxe edition) and the uncertainty facing record stores as the coronavirus forces them to close their doors, to being unable to shoot most of the video material I planned. It’s therefore with a very heavy heart that I reluctantly need to postpone the release of The Future Bites until such time everything can happen as intended. This will now be January next year, with new music and video starting to be issued again around October.  In the meantime the pre-order page for the various editions of the album will remain online. Myself, management, agent and promoters are monitoring the situation regarding the live shows scheduled for this autumn. Should events change we will let everyone know as soon as we do. 

I understand that this may be disappointing news, and to no one more that myself, believe me.  I worked on the music and background of this project for the last two years and was thrilled to finally be able to launch it. The response to the Personal Shopper track released last month has been phenomenal, and I was looking forward to unveiling more over the next few months in the build up to the release of the album. But alas due to the current circumstances it was not to be.  

I sincerely send everyone reading this a message of good health, and I hope that one day in the not too distant future we can once again focus on things like music, which even if it isn’t strictly essential seems to somehow makes life more worthwhile. SW x”

The post STEVEN WILSON’s New Album Postponed for January 2021 appeared first on Prog Sphere.

This news story was originally published here: http://www.prog-sphere.com/uncategorized/examining-entertainment-world-often-turns-prog-hard-rock-inspiration/

It is difficult to overstate the huge impact that music of all kinds has on people’s lives. Just browse our selection of reviews and take a look at the articles in our interviews section and you will see just how vital it is to the artists that we cover.

Of course, the importance of music in everyday life means it tends to have an influence on a range of different forms of culture. For example, there have certainly been thousands of books written about every aspect of the subject, while Bohemian Rhapsody is just one recent example of the big screen turning to fascinating stories from rock’s past for inspiration.

However, which other areas of the entertainment world have prog, metal and hard rock gone on to have a major impact on? Here we take a look at just a few fine examples of when the loudest, most frenetic guitar music has had a huge influence on popular culture.

Prog Rock in Video Gaming Moves from Soundtrack to Focal Point

Prog and metal have a very long association with video gaming which takes in many interesting twists and turns. For example, back in 2014, an article published by Renegade Revolution examined the close relationship between prog and Japanese RPGs. Intriguingly, it touched upon how the composer behind Final Fantasy’s music Nobuo Uematsu admitted he was heavily inspired by British bands like Genesis when working on games.

Some metal bands have also appeared in their very own games and it is likely that no discernible rock fan will be surprised to hear that flamboyant rockers Kiss are among the few to make that move. However, prog and metal entered the spotlight in a big way when the Guitar Hero series of games launched back in 2005. Guitar Hero II included a version of Rush’s instrumental YYZ, while the third game in the series also notably featured Dragonforce’s relentless Through the Fire and Flames at its climax.

Rock Provides the Soundtrack to a Different Type of Game

There’s a certain type of game where, in many cases, licensed inspiration has come from TV and film, with slot games often basing themselves on famous names such as Narcos, Game of Thrones and the hit comedy Bridesmaids – to name but a few examples. However, heavy guitar music has also played a key role in this area.

The prog rock titans have not yet had a major impact in this area but, when it comes to slot games, the basic defining features of progressive and heavy rock form a central part of the atmosphere they aim to create. The Immortal Romance slot is  one title whose soundtrack centers around a heavy, progressive guitar for its background and atmospheric piano melodies – somewhat akin to prog rock’s characteristic virtuoso refrains – flowing over the top. The theatricality of the vampirical theme is easily stirred up by our favorite music genre, a feature The Independent lists in its A-Z of progressive rock. So the association between hard rock and slots although subtle is strong.

Wheen Rock Stars Have Taken to the Small Screen

Prog and metal have also had a strong presence on the small screen in the past. For instance, British comedy The Life of Rock with Brian Pern was based around the fictional adventures of a former prog rock star. Elsewhere, Gene Simmons of Kiss was charged with turning a class of schoolchildren into a metal band on Rock School, while Beavis and Butthead’s fondness for all things loud has also been well-known through the decades.

Saying that, if we are going to discuss heavy metal on TV, we have to make some form of reference to The Osbournes. The reality series created by MTV introduced a mainstream audience to everything that Ozzy and his clan had to offer and the show arguably made him even more of a star than he was before.

Theatricality Hasn’t Yet Led to a True Prog Rock Musical

Considering prog and metal often deals in complex themes and many bands have been known to create entire albums inspired by specific stories or concepts, few musicals based on those genres have emerged into the mainstream.

However, hard rock in general has had an impact on this area, with The Who famously creating both Tommy and Quadrophenia which have gone on to inspire stage productions. Queen also influenced the Ben Elton musical We Will Rock You, but it really does seem like there is an opportunity for someone to create the first great prog-infused musical for the stage.

A major inspiration

Prog rock, metal and hard rock are much-loved genres which have not only generated more than their fair share of news headlines through the years, but also gone on to be a major inspiration on many different parts of popular culture.

From gaming to TV and even musicals, their presence has been felt in a range of different media – although it certainly could be argued that the time is right for prog to given more of a moment in the spotlight. With music being such an important part of all of our lives, it will be intriguing to see just how it continues to influence and inspire culture in the years ahead.

The post Examining How the Entertainment World Often Turns to Prog and Hard Rock for Inspiration appeared first on Prog Sphere.

This news story was originally published here: https://www.prog-sphere.com/uncategorized/examining-entertainment-world-often-turns-prog-hard-rock-inspiration/

It is difficult to overstate the huge impact that music of all kinds has on people’s lives. Just browse our selection of reviews and take a look at the articles in our interviews section and you will see just how vital it is to the artists that we cover.

Of course, the importance of music in everyday life means it tends to have an influence on a range of different forms of culture. For example, there have certainly been thousands of books written about every aspect of the subject, while Bohemian Rhapsody is just one recent example of the big screen turning to fascinating stories from rock’s past for inspiration.

However, which other areas of the entertainment world have prog, metal and hard rock gone on to have a major impact on? Here we take a look at just a few fine examples of when the loudest, most frenetic guitar music has had a huge influence on popular culture.

Prog Rock in Video Gaming Moves from Soundtrack to Focal Point

Prog and metal have a very long association with video gaming which takes in many interesting twists and turns. For example, back in 2014, an article published by Renegade Revolution examined the close relationship between prog and Japanese RPGs. Intriguingly, it touched upon how the composer behind Final Fantasy’s music Nobuo Uematsu admitted he was heavily inspired by British bands like Genesis when working on games.

Some metal bands have also appeared in their very own games and it is likely that no discernible rock fan will be surprised to hear that flamboyant rockers Kiss are among the few to make that move. However, prog and metal entered the spotlight in a big way when the Guitar Hero series of games launched back in 2005. Guitar Hero II included a version of Rush’s instrumental YYZ, while the third game in the series also notably featured Dragonforce’s relentless Through the Fire and Flames at its climax.

Rock Provides the Soundtrack to a Different Type of Game

There’s a certain type of game where, in many cases, licensed inspiration has come from TV and film, with slot games often basing themselves on famous names such as Narcos, Game of Thrones and the hit comedy Bridesmaids – to name but a few examples. However, heavy guitar music has also played a key role in this area.

The prog rock titans have not yet had a major impact in this area but, when it comes to slot games, the basic defining features of progressive and heavy rock form a central part of the atmosphere they aim to create. The Immortal Romance slot is  one title whose soundtrack centers around a heavy, progressive guitar for its background and atmospheric piano melodies – somewhat akin to prog rock’s characteristic virtuoso refrains – flowing over the top. The theatricality of the vampirical theme is easily stirred up by our favorite music genre, a feature The Independent lists in its A-Z of progressive rock. So the association between hard rock and slots although subtle is strong.

Wheen Rock Stars Have Taken to the Small Screen

Prog and metal have also had a strong presence on the small screen in the past. For instance, British comedy The Life of Rock with Brian Pern was based around the fictional adventures of a former prog rock star. Elsewhere, Gene Simmons of Kiss was charged with turning a class of schoolchildren into a metal band on Rock School, while Beavis and Butthead’s fondness for all things loud has also been well-known through the decades.

Saying that, if we are going to discuss heavy metal on TV, we have to make some form of reference to The Osbournes. The reality series created by MTV introduced a mainstream audience to everything that Ozzy and his clan had to offer and the show arguably made him even more of a star than he was before.

Theatricality Hasn’t Yet Led to a True Prog Rock Musical

Considering prog and metal often deals in complex themes and many bands have been known to create entire albums inspired by specific stories or concepts, few musicals based on those genres have emerged into the mainstream.

However, hard rock in general has had an impact on this area, with The Who famously creating both Tommy and Quadrophenia which have gone on to inspire stage productions. Queen also influenced the Ben Elton musical We Will Rock You, but it really does seem like there is an opportunity for someone to create the first great prog-infused musical for the stage.

A major inspiration

Prog rock, metal and hard rock are much-loved genres which have not only generated more than their fair share of news headlines through the years, but also gone on to be a major inspiration on many different parts of popular culture.

From gaming to TV and even musicals, their presence has been felt in a range of different media – although it certainly could be argued that the time is right for prog to given more of a moment in the spotlight. With music being such an important part of all of our lives, it will be intriguing to see just how it continues to influence and inspire culture in the years ahead.

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This news story was originally published here: http://www.prog-sphere.com/news/oranssi-pazuzu-unleash-mestarin-kynsi/

Black metal anti-traditionalists Oranssi Pazuzu unleash their new album Mestarin Kynsi (“The Master’s Claw”) today. On their fifth album, the band subverts the idea of world domination to open a conceptual discourse on indoctrination and propaganda itself. Their psychological nightmare evolves a philosophical and earnest tone, where occult future meets troubled reality.

Order Mestarin Kynsi in various formats here.

Singer and guitarist Jun-His commented: “We definitely wanted to look for new horizons, but on the other hand continue something we began building already on ‘Värähtelijä.’ Some big influences were electro albums that inspired an idea about having a song that would travel through different kinds of portals whilst being mutilated and mutated by the new environment.

On Mestarin Kynsi the doors of perception are not only evoked but off their hinges. Working again with their co-producer Julius Mauranen, who also helped craft their acclaimed 2018 Roadburn Festival commissioned,Waste of Space Orchestra collaboration live show/album Syntheosis, in their home-city of Tampere, Finland, the familiarity served a greater purpose towards the evolution of the album. As Jun-His puts it, “there is a city heart pumping on this album somewhere.

To mark the occasion, the band releases a video where they contemplate on the themes of Mestarin Kynsi today. Check the video out below.

More info on Oranssi Pazuzu:

www.oranssipazuzu.bandcamp.com
www.facebook.com/oranssipazuzu
www.instagram.com/oranssipazuzu
www.nuclearblast.de/oranssipazuzu

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