Published on 1st January 2018
Latest Prog News from across the progressive rock spectrum & updated throughout January 2018.
01/01/18: Andy Poole departs from Big Big Train
In a brief statement founding member Andy Poole announces the he has parted ways with Big Big Train and is “…ready for new and exciting adventures”.
The band responded by saying they: “would like to thank Andy for the significant part he has played in the band’s journey and we wish him well in his future endeavours”.
Big Big Train will continue with the seven-piece line-up of D’Virgilio / Gregory / Hall / Longdon / Manners / Sjöblom / Spawton alongside the five-piece BBT brass band led by Dave Desmond.
For future live performance, the band have recruited an additional musician to assist the band with keyboard and guitar work. An announcement will be made in due course.
01/01/18: John Payne and Erik Norlander announce the Dukes Of The Orient
Dukes Of The Orient will release their eponymous, debut album on 23rd February 2018. The album, which has been ten years in the making, features John Payne on vocals and bass guitar along with keyboardist Erik Norlander. The album also includes guest performances from Jeff Kollman, Guthrie Govan, Moni Scaria and Bruce Bouillet on guitar, Molly Rogers on strings and Jay Schellen on drums.
John Payne says of the album: “With Dukes of the Orient we have dug deep with analog soundscapes, superlative musicians and song-driven epics. Add to this the masterful artwork of Rodney Matthews and a journey that started with the supergroup ASIA, we give you the next chapter, one we are extremely proud of.”
“Dukes of the Orient has its origins in 2007 as “ASIA Featuring John Payne,” a band that continued on after ASIA keyboardist, Geoff Downes, left the band to re-form the original 1982 lineup. Payne recruited Norlander to join Guthrie Govan and Jay Schellen for tour dates in the US and initial recordings, some of which endured to appear on the Dukes of the Orient album here.
Govan left the band to form The Aristocrats and was replaced by guitarist Bruce Bouillet followed by Jeff Kollman and Moni Scaria. The final lineup resulted in the track, “Seasons Will Change,” released as a video in 2013 and also now appears on the Dukes of the Orient album.”
Tour dates, in support of the new album, are expected to be announced shortly …
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