The Breaking Of The World

A new Glass Hammer is like a universal constant.  I can always expect exemplary old school prog rock.  For an old timer like myself Glass Hammer is right in my wheelhouse.  This is their 17th studio album (amazing!) .  If you are unfamiliar with the band you should know it revolves around the core of bassist Steve Babb and keyboardist Fred Schendel.  There have been a lot of musicians through the doors of their studio over the years but somehow they always seem to find an endless supply of them.  The line up seems to be fairly stable at the moment.  Salem Hill mainman Carl Groves handles lead vocals along with Susie Bogdanowicz returning as well.  Guitars are handled by Kamran Alan Shikoh and drums by Aaron Raulston.

Glass Hammer music is a reverential amalgam of Yes, ELP, Kansas and what the hell throw in a little bit of Genesis.  Steve and Fred proudly wear their influences on their sleeves.  Want wicked keyboard pyrotechnics?  Fred brings the thunder.  In fact they all do.  The Breaking Of The World arrives with epic length tracks and audiophile quality sound.  I wouldn't want it any other way.  BUY OR DIE!

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  • Tarot has already proved themselves to be one of the best metal bands in the world - they have perfected the balancing act of melody and power like nobody's business. This is their first live DVD - filmed in Rupla, Finland in 2007. The set runs 2 hours and the accompanying CD features 14 of the 18 tunes from the performance. Note that this is a PAL region 0 disc. Make sure your DVD player can handle it as we won't take it back if it doesn't.
    $15.00
  • 2 CD of the band's final gig. Essentially the soundtrack to the CD.
    $14.00
  • "Next To None is the band of four young guys that are from Lehigh Vallay in Pennsylvania. Their names? Max Portnoy (d), Thomas Cuce (key/v), Ryland Holland (g) and Kris Rank (b). Portnoy, Portnoy, Portnoy? Yes, Max is the son of Mike Portnoy who some of you know from his time at Dream Theater or many other projects.The boys began already at the age of 12 and 13 to write own music. Additionally they also could gain already some live experience by being on tour with Adrenaline Mob and The Winery Dogs.The music of Next To None has many influences. There is the harder stuff that Max brings in and on the other hand the classic rock component that comes via Holland. The result is an interesting metal cocktail that is very entertaining.The diversity of sound comes back in songs like the melodic "Runaway" which is a straight-forward one. It includes a heavy riff, but also a keyboard-based middle part that give the tune a slightly new expression.The opener "The edge of sanity" instead is an nine minutes long epos that start with pouring rain, thunder and a chiming bell. It builds up to an dark prog metal track that reminds to Dream Theater not a big surprise. Their are two more of those extraordinary long tracks on "A light in the dark". "Control" is another nine minute long tune while the closer "Blood on my hands" is with eight minutes a bit shorter. Also those two numbers are more complex prog metal that shows the musical quality of the guys.Next to these extralong tracks it's the different influences that enables Next To None to numbers like "You are not me" too. Here we are talking about a raging metal track with a brutal verse. The chorus is more melodic, however, it is one of the heaviest tunes on the album. And it still fits into the context.But it also shows the wide vocal range of singer Thomas Cuce. He can handle the angry screams like on the before mentioned track as well as some soulful vocals that are need for e.g. "A lonely walk". The classic rock influences are very present in this song and I had to think about the good old Rainbow times. Cool stuff.There are maybe a few smaller parts that sound a bit unfinished but it's amazing how far the four guys got already. Still being in their teenage days the boys write already excellent songs and their musical talent is amazing. If these guys continue we can expect something very special for the coming years.These boys did a great album that has for sure a 'Wow'-factor." - Markus' Heavy Music Blog
    $13.00
  • In 1974, Jethro Tull announced plans for WarChild, a multi-faceted project that was to encompass a feature-length film, a soundtrack album, as well a new album from the band. In October of that year, Tull released a 10-song album that would climb to #2 in the U.S. and the top 15 in the U.K., but the film and accompanying soundtrack were shelved. To commemorate the 40-year anniversary of this ambitious experiment, Parlophone revisits WarChild.WARCHILD: THE 40TH ANNIVERSARY THEATRE EDITION will be available as a limited edition 2-CD/2-DVD set on November 25 2014.Highlights from the set include:- Original album and bonus tracks (three previously unreleased), remixed in 5.1 surround and stereo by Steven Wilson.- 10 orchestral pieces (nine previously unreleased) written for the film s soundtrack, 4 of which are remixed in 5.1 surround and stereo by Steven Wilson.- Flat transfers of the original LP mix at 96/24, and the quadrophonic version (with 2 bonus tracks) in 4.0.- The Third Hoorah promo footage, and footage from a January 1974 photo session/press conference where the WarChild project was announced.- An 80-page booklet featuring an extensive history of the project, a film script synopsis, track-by-track annotations by Ian Anderson, plus rare and unseen photographs.
    $45.00
  • Its been a couple of years but from the back of the warehouse, 8000 miles from here, we were able to exhume additional copies of the XRCD24 edition of this world music/new age classic.  While compatible with Redbook CD standards (this means it will work in your CD player) it is manufactured using JVC's proprietary mastering process.  There are lots of versions of this audiophile reference disc but this may well be the definitive one.Last time we had these they sold out immediately.  I would expect the same again. 
    $12.00
  • Remastered edition with one bonus track."With Jonathan Cain, Steve Perry, and Neal Schon leading Journey once again, and bassist Ross Valory and drummer Steve Smith behind them, it would seem that Trial by Fire would contain the same elements that gave them their stardom in the '80s. Disappointingly, though, there is nothing captivating or even the least bit attractive about this unimaginative release. Perry's singing hasn't lost too much of its power, but the faster tunes come off as contrived and messy. Sounding hard and scattered, the smoothness of their trademarked music is nowhere to be found, replaced with brash, beat-up, hollow rock riffs. The ballads fare no better, as the passion that once flourished within the band when it came to slowing things down has long since faded. Just the fact that Journey reunited may lure fans to this album, but it won't be long before the discontentment begins set in." - All Music Guide
    $5.00
  • "Esoteric Recordings are pleased to announce the release of a remastered edition of the 1979 album by the Canadian Progressive Rock group FM, Surveillance . The band began life in 1976 with CAMERON HAWKINS (Synthesisers, Bass, Vocals) and NASH THE SLASH (Jeff Plewman) (Electric Violin, Mandolin, Vocals) coming together as a duo, making an appearance on national TV in Canada in the Summer of 1976. By March 1977 FM became a trio with the addition of MARTIN DELLAR on Drums. The band s debut album followed. By the end of the year Nash the Slash had been replaced by BEN MINK on Electric Violin and Mandolin. Surveillance was the third album by the band, released in 1979, and was a hit of the Progressive Rock genre in the USA and Canada. This Esoteric Recordings release is the first time Surveillance has been issued in Europe and has been newly remastered and includes an illustrated booklet and a new essay."
    $17.00
  • "The Roaring Wolves are back… On a strong wake of a surprising and a triumphal album in 2011, that was much simply called “Wolfpakk”, the turbulent duo of vocalists comprised of Mark Sweeney (ex-CRYSTAL BALL) and Michael Voss (MAD MAX/MSG / ex-CASANOVA) unleash the successor, named "Cry Wolf" , and again the choral all-star project shift is the trick to give a marketing format for this burning platter, by gathering a pack of many high-class guest musicians and a few full blooded terrific barking voices to produce another raving record in the same musical vein as the great and self-titled debut.Running and undaunted Guests on "Cry Wolf" are :Vocals: Amanda Somerville (AVANTASIA), Ralf Scheepers (PRIMAL FEAR / ex-GAMMA RAY), Göran Edman (ex-RISING FORCE / ex-GLORY), Johnny Gioeli (A.R.P. / HARDLINE), Tony Mills (ex-SHY/ ex-SIAM / ex-TNT), Doogie White (ex-RAINBOW / ex-RISING FORCE / ex-CORNERSTONE / MSG), Blaze Baley (ex-IRON MAIDEN / WOLFSBANE), Piet Sielck (IRON SAVIOR / ex-SAVAGE CIRCUS).Guitars: Kee Marcello (ex-EUROPE / ex-EASY ACTION), Mandy Meyer (UNISONIC / KROKUS / ex-GOTTHARD / ex-COBRA), Roland Grapow (MASTERPLAN / ex-HELLOWEEN).Keys: Don Airey (ex-OZZY / DEEP PURPLE), Tony Carey (ex-RAINBOW).Drums: Brian Tichy (SUN / ex-WHITESNAKE), Hermann Rarebell (ex-SCORPIONS), Roland Jahoda (ex-PARADOX / F.U.C.K.)Under the leitmotiv of “if isn’t broken don’t fix it”, the Duet of Alpha Wolves and the fantastic AFM Records are teamed again in order to reedit the successful experience in giving the full and wild creative responsibility to the werewolf duet: the champions of Melodic Metal -Mister Sweeney and Doctor Voss.They wrote all the songs together (minus one surprise cover version from RAINBOW “Run With The Wolf” featuring the participation of the iconic keyboard player Tony Carey) and they were also in charge once again, for production and mixing duty, and of course they performed some ferocious vocals. This is a work of art tremendously and carefully polished that put some lights in a brilliant manner to the songwriting talent of the savage binomial Voss / Sweeney.The highlights of the albums are , the beginning track "Moonlight” with Ralf Scheepers who provide a very typical high flux of screaming and yelling, embellished by a fast pace and an epic dimension somewhere between HEAVENS GATE and MIND ODYSSEY with a little something from GAMMA RAY.In the same melodic power frenzy, the solid "A Matter of Time" that sounds like VICTORY meets BONFIRE, boosted by a share of battling vocals between Sweeney and Johnny Gioeli with an uplifting performance, courtesy of Mr. Brian Tichy beating his drum kit."Palace of Gold" reveals a new heaviness and a dark density before transforming in a more pompous style than usual with the participation to the voice of Tony Mills and a massive multi-layer backing vocal section choir, like a symphonic version of DIO merged with a delicate and fragile Prog Rock melody.Another fast double kick power number is "Beast In Me" with the always classy singing of Goran Edman, recalling that he was the singer for RISING FORCE / SPACE ODYSSEY / STRATOSPHERE and for 1999’s third album “The Last Viking” by The JOHANSSON BROTHERS and a true Neoclassical expertise demonstration in the lead spot provided by Roland Grapow.Then it's time for a real entertaining Teutonic Metal with an Hard Rock touch cut named "Pressure Down" with the very distinctive voice of Doogie White which is highlighted in a mid tempo heavy rhythm , and a strong sing along headbanging refrain with a great gang backing vocal unit, like ACCEPT meets SINNER with an extensive ad lib howling final.The rest of the tracklisting is also enjoyable mixing a few gimmick True Metal tracks as a simple sing along hymn as "Wakken" in the HAMMERFALL / IRON  SAVIOR / RUNNIG WILD and obliviously ACCEPT's fashion (…"bang your head…Metal attack"…)  or the less catchy but energetic, epic, tortuous and poignant title track "Cry Wolf" that extend to ten minutes with atmospheric sequence, special FX surreal sounds like wind and rain plus a few narrative parts in with a very surprising vocal interpretation of Blaze Bayley and a ultra-fast shredding piece of lead guitar signed by the one and the only, the other Swedish maestro Mr. Kee Marcello himself for a big fat guitar lesson and a serious beating .Before that we had a ballad with Mrs. Somerville but I think it's just a flat and ordinary number, very caricaturish, in a not really inspired style, before that it was the moment for the WOLFPAKK's leaders to be left alone in the vocal department at least, Voss / Sweeney are dueling in the single, a quite regular Euro Metal cut under the moniker of "Dark Revelation"…Not my favorite.The cover version of a legendary classic rock track, is as always, a double edged sword but secured with the approval and the additional playing of the early RAINBOW's keyboardist Tony Carey, to keep it in the right path, in this case "Run With The Wolf" is a good revision lightened in its rhythmic cadence structure as a result we have a more pompous rendition, with obviously the Hammond keyboards quite upfront.Finally, the album is the perfect sequel of the highly acclaimed debut; this sophomore episode fulfilled the dangerous task, with maybe a less impressive guest list but with a real focus on bringing back, proudly and under one united flag, the old nature of the pure roaring Euro-Metal mania." - Metal Temple
    $15.00
  • Joyous Lake was one of two dead on fusion albums recorded by the illustrious jazz guitarist.  Pat Martino's career is legendary and he is one of the premier guitarists in the world.  When he left Muse Records in the mid-70s he signed with Warner Brothers and briefly jumped on the fusion bandwagon.  Joyous Lake was the first effort in 1976 and Starbright followed.  Both are essential.Joyous Lake featured support from Delmar Brown (keyboards), Kenwood Dennard (drums), and Mark Leonard (bass).  Martino experimented with early guitar synthesizer in places and it sounds like he moved over to a solid body guitar since his tone cuts through like a knife - as opposed to his hollow body guitar tone that has a very muted treble.  High energy playing from a very skilled quartet.  This will appeal to fans of Al Di Meola, Return To Forever, and Mahavishnu Orchestra.  One of the great fusion albums of the 70s available from Japan at a bargain price!
    $12.00
  • Tony Bank's first solo album, originally released in 1979, is given a fresh breath of life with a new stereo mix courtesy of Nick Davis. This was done at the same time that Rutherford and Collins recorded solo albums as well - between the time of And Then There Were Three and Duke. Musically it pretty much fits into that gap as well. Its a concept album that sounds a bit like the lighter side of Genesis. One cool piece is the opener - "From The Undertow". It opens the album and was composed as the intro the the Genesis tune "Undertow". I remember seeing the British film "The Shout". Weird flick but that track was featured in the soundtrack and it was moody and creepy and un-nerved the hell out of me."Esoteric Recordings are proud to announce the release of 30th Anniversary editions of the album “A Curious Feeling” by Genesis founder member and keyboard player Tony Banks on Monday October 19th 2009. This classic album, inspired by the novel “Flowers for Algernon” by Daniel Keyes, was first released in October 1979 by Charisma Records. Recorded at Polar Studios in Stockholm, whilst Genesis were on a brief hiatus following the “And Then There Were Three” tour, this majestic work featured contributions from drummer Chester Thompson (a member of GENESIS for concert appearances) and vocalist Kim Beacon.Stylistically the album is equal to anything Banks composed for Genesis and includes the evocative instrumental “The Waters of Lethe” and the song “For a While” (released as a single in 1979 and issued as a Download single via iTunes on October 19th) among its highlights. Significantly, this new edition of “A Curious Feeling” has been remixed from the original master tapes by Nick Davis (who also remixed the entire Genesis catalogue in 2007) and Tony Banks, resulting in a more dynamic sounding album."
    $18.00
  • "What are we going to do with Angra? I don't really enjoy their early material that much – sure it's very well written, and technically sound at that, but it has not yet engaged me and the vocals of then-frontman Matos rub me the wrong way. Temple of Shadows was good but held back by a lot of things that made it hard to listen to all the way through – for instance, it was fruity as hell, and overloaded with too many ideas. Aurora Consurgens fixed those problems and delivered a great album of modernized power metal. But I still thought they could do better...and hence, Aqua.This album is just really awesome. It's proggy and dense – much more so than anything else they've ever done. This is not the kind of album that you would expect after hearing Temple of Shadows alone, and for that I think this is getting a lot of unwarranted bad press from the metal community. In reality this is the sound they seem to have been shooting for all along. Where on Temple they just tossed random elements into a melting pot and hoped it came out with some good hooks – succeeding only half the time – on Aqua, they condense their rumbling guitars, folksy melodies and epic vocal lines into full-throttle progressive metal without any apologies.The restraint on this album is just maddening, as when you think the song might explode into a high-flying chorus or screaming climax...it doesn't. And that's what's so good about it – they've managed to construct a bunch of tunes that never go for the obvious hook, rather choosing to try for a new twist – most of the time it works really well. Edu Falaschi's vocals are reigned in to a deeper, darker intonation than he's ever had, and his vocal melodies are just superb on here. They're slow-burning growers, but once they hit you, they really hit you, as on "Hollow" or "A Monster in Her Eyes." "Weakness of a Man" is just great with this, too.The guitars are always heavy and rhythmic, not always going for a straight-ahead metal attack, but always being complex and riveting – check out the blistering "Awake from Darkness" or the more straight-ahead power metal cruiser "Arising Thunder." There are some subtle folk elements on a few tracks like the excellent "Lease of Life" and the crushing, searing "Weakness of a Man," and a lot of slow, ballad-esque moments that allow Falaschi to stretch out his pipes and the guitarists to cook out some more emotive moments. "A Monster in Her Eyes" is absolutely stunning in this regard.Nothing on here is really done in a way you'd expect, and since the hooks are so angular and fresh, the songs never wear out their welcome, always sounding cool and innovative. There is a somber twinge to the melodies here at times, and at others, an angry, wrathful one, making this album sound somewhat like a journey through the raging, untamed wilderness – if not for the pristine sense of refinement in the songwriting, that is. With Aqua the band eschews more and more of what held them back in the early days and also brings closer the themes and motifs they always wanted to get down in their lyrics and atmosphere. This album is progressive, raw, subtle and a huge grower if there ever was one, revealing new layers with each spin. Angra has never sounded better." - The Metal Crypt
    $15.00
  • "Originating from traditional folk music, Bröselmaschine were formed in Duisburg in autumn 1968, and were fronted by renowned guitarist, theorist and writer Peter Bursch. The original band, who were inspired by Pentangle (their quote, not ours) and European folk musics, played a mixture of all sorts of cultures. They wrapped vibrant songs in a hybrid of folk, Indian music, psychedelic rock and cosmic musics, all fused together to form a delicate spacious folk-fusion of great beauty. Their style was characterised by Jenni Schücker, who has a most sensual vocal style ideally suited to such music, all ready to wisp us off to the clouds with the "heads flying by" - to quote the surreal psychedelic lyrics of the opening "Gedanken". With the exception of "Lassie" (a minor low-point, being a traditional folk song) BRÖSELMASCHINE is a delightful album, trippy and otherworldly, stylishly Teutonic cosmic folk, not least so in the addition of Dieter Dierks spooky Mellotron, sitars, zither, tablas, and the like. It all adds up to an ideal companion to Emtidi's SAAT or Hölderlin's TRAUM." - The Crack In The Cosmic Egg
    $15.00
  • "Following the success of his first solo album, Welcome to My Nightmare, Alice Cooper followed it up with another concept album, Goes to Hell, similar in style to its predecessor. Again, longtime Alice producer Bob Ezrin was on board, and while there are a few highlights, Goes to Hell signaled an Alice era where he pretty much forsook the raw garage rock of his early days (Killer, School's Out) in favor of polished studio glitz. That said, the title track is worthy of any headbanger's time (and remains one of Cooper's most overlooked rock tunes), while "I Never Cry" was another Alice ballad that found a place near the top of the charts. Other highlights include such tracks as the disco-rock-boogie of "You Gotta Dance" and the laid-back yet sinister funk groove of "I'm the Coolest." Elsewhere, the musical experiments aren't as successful -- the old-time sounds of "Give the Kid a Break," "I'm Always Chasing Rainbows," and the album-closing "Going Home" are about as far removed from the expected hard-rocking AC direction as you can get. And while the rocker "Wish You Were Here" would become a late-'70s concert standard for the Coop, the original studio version lacks the firepower the song achieved on the stage. Alice was supposed to follow up the album's release with another highly theatrical stage show (following the cue of his first solo tour in 1975), but an illness squashed the tour altogether. Despite its missteps, the gold-certified Goes to Hell would prove to be Alice's most commercially successful solo album for quite some time." - All Music Guide
    $5.00
  • "Italian Symphonic Metallers SINHERESY have an early Christmas present for you titled “Paint The World”. With how well these six combine their talents, how tight and refined each track is, it’s not easy to believe this is their first full length LP.  I seriously had to go back and check then recheck on that. These guys and girl are so good; their sound is that of a group that’s worked together for many, many years.Alright, so SINHERESY isn’t completely new. Way back in 2010 they had a dual tracked demo. Rumor has it, they began as a NIGHTWISH cover band, though of that I am not positive. You will likely hear some NIGHTWISH undertones and influences though, The following year would see the release of their first EP named “The Spiders And The Butterfly.” Critics and fans loved these five fresh tracks, and hopes were that a full length album would be soon to follow.Fall of 2013 would finally end the long wait, and SINHERESY would reappear with “Paint The World”. Are Symphonic Metal fans in for a treat? Definitely. Taking a slightly different approach with their sound, they mix male and female vocals throughout each song. Rather than harsh male vocals and softer female vocals, such as say EPICA, theirs offers the softer cleaner vocals from both for the most part. Vocals are by Cecilia Petrini and Stefano Sain. Their voices blend and complement each other beautifully.Did I mention the music yet? It’s very tightly and expertly done. From the epic opening of “Last Fall”, you will know what I mean. Along with the heavy hitter “Last Fall”, favorites included title track “Paint The World” with its excellent guitar riffs and vocal changes. “Roses & Thorns” had some unexpected and wonderful vocal tweaks along with some lovely piano. What beautiful ballads both the latter and “Our Angel” are. “Breakpoint” is one of several catchy tunes, containing some varied vocal and musical changes that suit it perfectly. My ultimate favorite was “Elua's Gift” with a heavy dose of Arabic influence.If you are a fan of NIGHTWISH, KAMELOT, EPICA, or Symphonic Metal in general, this is an album for you. As stated in the beginning of this review, it’s almost impossible to believe this is their first full length LP. As impressive as “Paint The World” is, I already can’t wait to see how they will top this. " - Metal Temple
    $13.00