Epicloud

SKU: 0603-2
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Inside Out Music
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This is the most enjoyable Devin Townsend album I've heard in years.  Townsend definitely walks to the beat of a different drummer and is constantly confounding his listeners.  Epicloud is no different.  The album is actually catchy in a poppy way but still plenty of metal elements.  The production is purely epic in nature - reverb gone wild!  Townsend mainly sings with a clean voice but even when he dirties it up its swimming in 'verb so his voice takes on an otherworldly quality.  He's complemented by the great Anneke van Giersbergen who appears through out - mainly as a backing vocalist but at times singing lead lines.  So what we have here is something I really didn't expect - a hook filled metal album that neatly collides with dream pop.

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  • Third album from this superb Italian prog ensemble now reduced to a trio.  The band now consists of two keyboardists Beppe Colombo and Corrado Grappeggia, and multi-instrumentalist Claudio Colombo who plays drums, flute, guitar, and bass.  The trio is augmented by some special guests: David Jackson (ex-VDGG), Arjen Lucassen (Ayreon), and Dino Fiore (Il Castello Di Atlante).  The music takes on a little bit more of a modern feel but for the most part it stays true to the roots of "Rock Progressivo Italiano".  Plenty of wicked keyboard parts mixed with some heavy guitar leads.  Yeah vocals are in Italian as if you didn't already know. Over the past 3 or 4 years the Italian prog scene has exploded with excellent bands.  Pandora is clearly near the top.  The whole package comes in a nice tri fold mini-lp sleeve.  Highly recommended.
    $18.00
  • Second part of a conceptual work based around Tolkein. Ainur are a large scale symphonic rock band - sort of Italy's answer to Glass Hammer. The band is augmented by an actual orchestra - Symphonic Orchestra I Musici Di San Grato. There are multiple female and male vocal parts instilling a rock opera feel. Keyboards tend to focus on synthesizer. While the guitar work has a metallic feel the music never approaches anything close to metal. Flute and strings are featured prominently. This is purely a sprawling symphonic rock work spread out over two discs. Lots to digest here but it will be rewarding for those with patience.
    $21.00
  • Deluxe remastered edition at a budget price of the album that marked Rick Wakeman's short lived return to the band. Some gems on the album but overall a let down from previous efforts. Comes with an incredible 9 bonus tracks.
    $9.00
  • New remastered edition of one of the best progressive rock albums of the 70s. This was the first album from keyboardist/composer Luciano Basso. Later on in his career he became a "serious" classical composer abandoning any rock trappings at all. This could best be categorized as classical rock. It is an all instrumental album featuring violin, cello, bass, percussion, and of course Basso's beautiful assortment of grand piano, Mellotron, and organ. There is a real mature quality to the compositions that in some ways echoes that of Banco's Di Terra. Tracks like "Promenade" have a bit of an ELP feel as well. Luckily Basso gives plenty of space to Luigi Campalani's violin so this never feels like a clone. This new mini-lp sleeve edition comes with one bonus track. Highest recommendation. One of the great ones.
    $17.00
  • Fourth album from this interesting German band.  Frequency Drift has really grown by leaps and bounds over the course of their four albums.  The band original characterized themselves as cinematic progressive rock.  I think you can pretty much throw that out the window.  Still plenty of similarities to White Willow but the band has for the most part developed their own sound.  Vocalist Antje Auer sings with plaintive urgency - she has a very pleasant voice.  The real star is violinist Frank Schmitz.  He creates some real fire.  The typical symphonic rock instrumentation is augmented by a battery of medieval instruments as well as clarinet and flute.  On the 15 minute "Cold" the band blisses out in the middle into an Eloy inspired space jam.  A definite grower.  Highly recommended.
    $16.00
  • "Can it be possible that we've got to 2014 without me ever having heard a studio album by Lazuli? Yes, ladies and gents, that is possible, I can assure you. Whilst I vividly remember Lazuli live in Tilburg some years ago in 2007 at the Symforce Festival and actually finding them making a huge impression with their live performance, I simply never got around to either buying nor listening to their studio albums. Shame on me for not doing so. More so as I now fully realise what I have been missing in music for quite some years. What a joy it was to hear the Lazuli sound again and now on a new album as well.For days Tant Que L'Herbe Est Grasse has been spinning its rounds in many CD players, be it in the car, at work or on my home system. Opener Déraille with its environmentally engaged lyrics gets on its way with a fine rhythm and very varied sounds and immediately draws you deep, deep into the world that is Lazuli's. I must add that Dominique Leonetti's passionate singing and the way his vocal lines, to these ears, are almost an instrument in their own right set them apart from many other bands. It may just be that you get drawn to listening to the lyrics even more and try to understand them that much better.Une Pente Qu'On Devale has the slightest bit of a Marillion vibe that reminds me a wee bit of the feel of their semi-acoustic tracks like Man Of A Thousand Faces, yet this is more modern and Lazuli rock out towards the end. There's also some fine, fine soloing in there too.Homo Sapiens just grabs you. It's more ballsy and reminds a bit of Riverside whereas the second half of the song tips its hat to latter day Fish, that is before the band start again and we get a fine Léode solo. The Fish vibe also appears to shine through on Tristes Moitiés and L'Essence Des Odyssées, yet it is not that these songs make Lazuli sound a 100% like everyone's favourite Scotsman; not at all, yet there is a comparison in sound that, to me, flows back to the Raingods with Zippos days. Fish himself features on J'Ai Trouvé Ta Faille where he gets to sing in the second part of the song. Another fine song on this very fine album, but there is plenty more to hear before we actually get to that one, the eighth song on the album.What Lazuli have delivered here is an album rich in sound and where all band members get to shine, be it individually yet moreover in how much this album is a band effort. On first listen you might find that the songs are just songs, but their build has more to them than appears on first listen. This is an album that grows each and every time you hear it. There are parts that are prog, world music, folk rock, storming out and out rocking moments and they are all brought together in this album. As I once more listen to Tristes Moitiés Lazuli again fully draw me into their realm. What is it that makes albums present themselves as ever growing in beauty? The textures, the soloing, the intricate drum and percussion parts that get to you more and more with each and every listening session. I dare say that this album has all that and, as already mentioned, there is the great singing!Multicolèlere, a play on the words "multicoloured anger", speeds things up once more and shows a heavier Lazuli. This whole song very much gets to me and perhaps there's another bit of Riverside, but let's just cut to the chase; this band sounds every inch like Lazuli should. And there is only one way to find that out for the not yet initiated and that is to just go and listen to this fine gem of an album. Don't think you can do like me and miss out on one of the finest prog bands around - why should you? You'd be missing out on real beauty. And yes, listen to this album all the way through, you won’t find that hard at all as J'Ai Trouvé Ta Faille is another beauty as is the closing song, Les Courants Ascendants, the only song to reach beyond the 6 minute mark. But count that as an asset that Lazuli have to their songwriting; they succeed in writing compact songs that are all very varied throughout the album." - DPRP.net
    $15.00
  • Domestic jewelbox pressing with one bonus track."It’s always the highlight of my year when I discover a new “Who’s Who” of heavy metal, all-star line-up releasing a full-length album. Sometimes, they can really flop, sounding nearly identical to one of the member’s bands, like nothing at all has changed, and only release one album – maybe two. That being said however, some of these all-star mash-ups end up creating a freight train of hard-hitting heavy metal that doesn’t seem to be slowing down any time soon. Sometimes they succeed in seemingly blending the influence from each member so perfectly that an entirely new and original sound comes soaring out of your speakers. Enter Ashes of Ares, the new project of ex-Iced Earth and Nevermore members, forming in 2012 and preparing the release of their debut, self-titled full-length in September.Fronting the band is truly a name that needs no introduction (though I plan to give one anyway), Matt Barlow. Despite the mile long “past members” list for American heavy metal band Iced Earth, Barlow fronted the band for the majority of their career thus far, boasting one of the most original and most recognized voices in American metal. He left the band, along with bassist (turned guitarist) Freddie Vidales in 2012 to focus on other acts, particularly Ashes of Ares. Joined by ex-Nevermore drummer, Van Williams, Ashes of Ares proves to live up to the destructive, war-drenched name the band has been given.The album runs up and down like a roller coaster from straight up thrashing, in your face American metal, to a more toned down and melodic side to the artists. It’s easy to hear the influence of all of the member’s past bands, yet they each definitely brought some new songwriting to the table. “The Messenger” opens the album up with a mellow and melodic guitar line, featuring Barlow’s insanely haunting, layered vocals. The chills immediately travel up my spine, right up until the song really kicks into gear. Moving on throughout the album, tracks “On Warriors Wings” and “This is My Hell” feature great groove, showcasing beautiful melodies and harmonies left and right between Barlow’s voice and the guitar lines. Meanwhile, the drum parts remain simple yet constructive, especially in “This is My Hell” where they are responsible for pushing along this musical tension, building-up to the song’s liberation. The falsetto vocal touches in this song really push it over the top for me, and it is easily my favorite moment on the album.While there are some tracks that get somewhat repetitive and lose my interest, the album redeems itself with “Chalice of Man” that hits hard and doesn’t let up. Immediately following is the album’s ballad-like moment, “The Answer”. Barlow soars above the music in the beginning, but the distorted guitar and bass lines answer quickly and the song picks up into a great tune. The lyrics are seriously emotional and heart-felt, which definitely isn’t lacking on the album (see “What I Am”), but it really sticks out on this song specifically. The slower tempo fits Barlow’s pipes perfectly, and the layered harmonies are flawless.As a whole, the album moves along unbelievably fast, despite the few tracks that do get repetitive. The songs are so creatively arranged, topped off with the god-like vocals of Matt Barlow, I really don’t see how anyone could pass up on this record. Right now, they have “Dead Man’s Plight” as a lyric video (see below), along with snippets of “The Messenger” and “The One Eyed King” on YouTube. If I still haven’t persuaded you on the music, have at it!I beg you to check out this new, unbelievable legacy that these men are creating! It will not disappoint!" - Metalholic
    $6.00
  • As a promotion leading up to the band's 15th anniversary concert, Within Temptation partnered with Q Music Belgium and Netherlands.  They released a series of cover tunes - 15 in all.  This CD includes 11 of them all done up Within Temptation style:‘Grenade’ (BRUNO MARS)‘Titanium’ (DAVID GUETTA ft. SIA)‘Let Her Go’ (PASSENGER)‘Summertime Sadness’ (LANA DEL RAY)‘Radioactive’ (IMAGINE DRAGONS)‘Crazy’ (GNARLS BARKLEY)‘Dirty Dancer’ (ENRIQUE IGLESIAS)‘Don’t You Worry Child’ (SWEDISH HOUSE MAFIA)‘Behind Blue Eyes’ (THE WHO)‘The Power Of Love’ (FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD)‘Apologize’ (ONE REPUBLIC)There is no US release scheduled at this time.   
    $17.00
  • ‘Minstrel in the Gallery,’ Jethro Tull‘s eighth LP, is being remastered and expanded for its 40th birthday.The band’s fifth consecutive U.S. Top 10 album — and the last to feature the longtime lineup of Ian Anderson, Martin Barre, John Evans, Barrie Barlow and Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond — ‘Minstrel’ was originally released in September 1975, and spun off one single with the title track, which peaked at No. 80. The new edition, which supplants a previously available 2002 remaster, is being released on May 5 as a limited-edition two-CD / two-DVD set.The deluxe version, titled the ‘La Grande’ edition, adds seven bonus tracks (six of them previously unreleased) to the original album, including two mixed to 5.1 surround, and all to stereo by Steven Wilson, plus a flat transfer of the original LP mix at 96/24 and a flat transfer of the original quad mix, both of which include the B-side ‘Summerday Sands.’This edition, which is available for pre-order now, also includes an eight-minute film from 1975, featuring the band performing ‘Minstrel in the Gallery’ in Paris during July 1975, and adds a case-bound DVD book with an 80-page booklet featuring essays and photos as well as a series of track-by-track annotations by Anderson. For those who don’t have a ‘La Grande’ budget to match the deluxe pricing, ‘Minstrel’ will also be reissued digitally and on a single CD, as well as a 180-gram vinyl limited-edition pressing.Jethro Tull, ‘Minstrel in the Gallery’ 40th Anniversary La Grande Edition Track Listing:Disc One – New Steven Wilson Stereo Mix‘Minstrel in the Gallery’‘Cold Wind to Valhalla’‘Black Satin Dancer’‘Requiem’‘One White Duck / 010 = Nothing At All’‘Baker St. Muse’: a. ‘Pig-Me And The Whore’ b. ‘Nice Little Tune’ c. ‘Crash-Barrier Waltzer” d. ‘Mother England Reverie’‘Grace’‘Summerday Sands’‘Requiem’ (Version 1, previously unreleased)‘One White Duck’ (Take 5, previously unreleased)‘Grace’ (Take 2, previously unreleased)‘Minstrel in the Gallery’ (BBC version, previously unreleased)‘Cold Wind to Valhalla’ (BBC version, previously unreleased)‘Aqualung’ (BBC version, previously unreleased)Disc Two – Live at the Palais Des Sports, Paris, July 5, 1975 (A Jakko Jakszyk Stereo Mix)‘Introduction (The Beach Part 11)’‘Wind Up’‘Critique Oblique’‘Wond’ring Aloud’‘My God’: a. Flute Solo Including: ‘God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen/Bouree/Quartet’ b. ‘Living in the Past’ c. ‘My God’ (Reprise)‘Cross-Eyed Mary’‘Minstrel in the Gallery’‘Skating Away on the Thin Ice of the New Day’‘Bungle in the Jungle’‘Aqualung’Guitar Solo‘Back-Door Angels’‘Locomotive Breath’ with improvisation and including “Hard Headed English General” and “Back-Door Angels” (reprise)The DVDs  feature the DTS & DD 5.1 surround mixes as well as the 96/24 PCM stereo mix and and an eight and half minute film of the band recorded in Paris on 6th July 1975.
    $41.00
  • "The Pineapple Thief began their journey in 1999, and had a rocky road ahead of them on their way to the top. However, their music has developed leaps and bounds since their first release and this new one is no different. ‘All The Wars’ is an album that deals with the conflicts we face in life and in the world, and it does so fantastically.This record could definitely be described as a sombre album. Don’t let this put you off, instead prepare for the emotional whirlwind of a lifetime as the lyrics suck you in to the story of the album, allowing you to explore with the band the deep sense of conflict with the world that this album presents. The rising and falling elements of the songs toy with you, demanding that you feel the same emotions that the vocalist himself portrays. Songs such as ‘Last Man Standing’ for example, allow you a glimpse into the deep-routed anger of the protagonist of the song. The slow, drawn out build-up of the guitar and drums explode into a deafening outburst of emotion, which is then, almost as quick as it came, suddenly cut off and we return to slower paces. This band knows how to make you feel, and they know how to manipulate your emotions with their instruments, making you rise and fall just as easily as their crescendos. Accompanying such explosive songs are some slower paced ones, such as ‘Reaching Out’. This track is much softer, as the instruments combine together to create a melodic, easy-listening feel.‘All The Wars’ is an album that comes highly recommended to any lovers of rock, and it will definitely still be on your playlist in ten years’ time. The Pineapple Thief’s rise to fame hasn’t been an easy one, but with the release of their latest offering it will be cemented." - Sound Sphere Mag
    $9.00
  • Third album from a band that is essentially a mash up of members from Sieges Even, Sun Caged and Dreamscape.  Their music carries on very much in the style of the later Sieges Even albums.  In other words progressive rock that leans towards the heavier side of the spectrum.  Rush, Rabin-era Yes, Saga, and Dream Theater come to mind as influences.  Quite melodic and if you are so inclined you'll hear some incredible chops from guitarist Markus Steffen.  The band corraled Stream Of Passion's Marcela Bovio for a guest vocal appearance, dueting with Arno Menses.
    $17.00
  • Submarine Silence is a side project from Moongarden's Cristiano Roversi.  The bands first album was released 12 years ago on Mellow Records.  It was an instrumental album that paid a huge debt to early Genesis.  This low awaited follow up album is cut from a similar cloth but it does feature vocals.  Most of the band is fleshed out with other members of Moongarden and Mangala Vallis.  Vocals are sung by Mirko Ravenoldi, who frankly I'm not familiar with.  He sings in English and truth be told he's a much better guitarist than singer.  Luckily the album features long swathes of instrumental passages - all cut from the Genesis cloth.  Roversi's keyboard arsenal is chock full of all the old favorites - Mellotron, Hammond organ, Arp and Moog synths, etc.  Lots of similarities to Tony Bank's set up and I believe that is the whole point.  Not very Italian sounding at all.  If you long for the old school sounds of Nursery Cryme and Foxtrot check this one out.
    $18.00
  • Remastered from the original tapes. Gentle flowing music with lysergic underpinnings. A cult classic. New edition from the original master tapes with eight bonus tracks.
    $17.00
  • "A new interpretation of a classic RPI title! This is quite an undertaking, but it comes off in an outstanding way, giving new life to old friends. In contrast to so many reworkings of old pieces that I've heard in recent years, this one does not leave me only wishing to listen to the original. Rather, the new work stands well on its own, not only helping me listen to the original with new ears, but also bringing new insights and experience.In 1972, Latte e Miele released their debut, an incredibly ambitious work based on the Passion of St. Matthew, "Passio Secundum Mattheum." This is one of the seminal titles of 1970s RPI and has rightfully stood the test of time. The band would never equal this album, although the subsequent title, "Papillon", came close. After that the band broke up for a time, until drummer Alfio Vitanza reformed the band, with new members including bassist Massimo Gori. Their only album, "Aquile e Scoiattoli", has its moments but is inferior to the first two, and the band disbanded a few years later after moving toward more commercial music.In 2008 the band reformed, including all three original members (Vitanza and songwriter/keyboardist Oliviero Lacagnina, as well as guitarist Marcello Giancarlo Dellacasa) and Massimo Gori, bassist from the second generation of the band. The quartet released "Live Tasting", an excellent live album that portended of the good to come. Their time together also produced a wonderful new album, "Marco Polo: Sogni e Viaggi" in 2009.Over the years, Lacagnina never stopped composing his masterpiece, his "Passio". Now the quartet has recorded anew their masterpiece, adding those "new" compositions into the narrative. For example, "Il Pane e il Sangue dell'Alleanza" has been inserted right after "Ultima Cena", and "Il Rinnegamento di Pietro" and "Il Prezzo del Sangue" between "Il Pianto" and "Giuda". Also, the ending has been fleshed out significantly, with four new songs, and the final song, "Come un Ruscello che..." includes the final themes previously entitled "Il Dono della Vita". Also of note, a solo organ piece entitled "Toccata per organo" is placed just before "Calvario"--this is special, as it is an original take from 1972!The instrumentation is true to the spirit of the 1972 piece, although with an updated sound. Ditto the choir, which sometimes on the 1972 version is muted and thin--here the choir parts are strong, lush, and vibrant. The majority of the pieces that were rerecorded for this edition also maintain their compositional structure, although there are a few changes inserted (notably in "I Falsi Testimoni", the new version of "I Testimoni" parts 1 and 2). There is nothing that violates that spirit of the original work, though it is impossible to duplicate its wonderful innocence.Another unique feature of this album is the presence of several prominent figures from RPI providing the spoken Evangelist parts. These include Alvaro Fella (Jumbo), Lino Vairetti (Osanna), Silvana Aliotta (Circus 2000), Paolo Carelli (Pholas Dactylus), Aldo de Scalzi (Picchio dal Pozzo), Sophya Baccini, Elisa Montaldo (Il Tempio delle Clessidre), Giorgio D'Adamo (New Trolls), Max Manfredi, Simonluca, and Paolo Griguolo (Picchio dal Pazzo). It's a nice touch that really rounds out the album.The CD comes in a jewel case with a lyric booklet. I'm told that the pending Japanese version will contain a newly recorded composition as a bonus track. But don't wait for that one--go out and grab this one. You won't be disappointed. Four plus stars (Gnosis 13/15).Edit: I can't stop listening to this! Though it's not quite as good as the original, it's very close. I'm bumping it up to Gnosis 14/15, which is five stars on PA." - ProgArchives
    $16.00