Essence Of Change

SKU: GEPCD1047
Label:
Giant Electric Pea
Category:
Fusion
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Fourth album from this outstanding jazz metal band from Hungary getting outside exposure with their signing to IQ's Giant Electric Pea label.  Special Providence started out their career as a pure fusion band - not unlike Tribal Tech and Return To Forever.  With their third album, Soul Alert, the band injected a heavier metal presence primarily in the guitarwork.  Essence Of Change carries on from Soul Alert in terms of heaviness and the use of distortion but at the same time there is clearly more of a jazz/fusion emphasis in the writing.  This gives us a nicely balanced sound that has a lot of cross over appeal.  Liquid Tension Experiment and Morglbl fans will love this and I expect open minded fans of RTF and Mahavishnu will enjoy hearing the young kats update the sound they developed in the 70s.  Expect a non-stop assault of laser beam synth solos and blistering distortion laced guitar solos.  Yeah this one hits the sweet spot and after many future spins I suspect this will sit at the top of their already impressive discography.  BUY OR DIE!!

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  • "Returning to action after four years of solo projects, Roxy Music redefined its sound and agenda on Manifesto. More than ever, Roxy sounds like Bryan Ferry's backing band, as the group strips away its art rock influences, edits out the instrumental interludes in favor of concise pop songs, and adds layers of stylish disco rhythms. Although the songwriting is distressingly inconsistent, there are a number of wonderful moments on the record, particularly in the sighing "Angel Eyes" and the heartbroken "Dance Away." Still, trading sonic adventure for lush, accessible disco-pop isn't entirely satisfactory, even if it is momentarily seductive."
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  • "Too many people mislabel “technical” or “math” for “progressive”. The vast majority of the bands in the djent movement are, at best, technical. The only prog-like changes in the music are from a riff to a breakdown. Elsewhere, some noodly math band is labeled “progressive” because the guitars make pretty twinkle noises. That is hardly the stuff of prog legends. Enter The Omega Experiment, whose debut helps re-define a genre that really needs clarification.I don’t mean to get ahead of myself, as The Omega Experiment is no classic. These Michigan natives have the story of a djent group, but the sound of a bygone era. The group consists of multi-instrumentalist Dan Wieten and keyboardist Ryan Aldridge. The group is, in essence, a bedroom project, one of the many disciples of the prophet Misha Mansoor. Yet, The Omega Experiment treks down a different sonic road than Periphery.While the latter worshiped at the altar of Meshuggah, these gentlemen prefer to take heed from the success of Rush, Dream Theater, and most evidently, Devin Townsend. The band’s particular brand of progressive metal is light on the metal, favoring towering vocals to screamed sentiments. Also, half of the group is the keyboardist, so you bet your sweet ass that the keyboard plays a heavy role on the proceedings here. The blazing solos aren’t too shabby either.The album tells the story of Dan Wieten’s struggles over the past ten years and his search for a way out of his own mess. The music helps tell the story of transcendence; each melody seems to come from a place of light as Dan fights off his inner demons. Like any concept album, The Omega Experiment is best enjoyed in one sitting. Because of this, the album lacks absolute highlights and lowlights. If you are a fan of the throwback prog style, surely each new track will uncover something pleasing to your ears. The entire album is laden to the brim with vocal melodies, guitar pyrotechnics, and enough keyboards to please any Styx fan. The record is such a treat that the band even named its first track “Gift”.With an album like this, it’s not easy to point out complaints, but two become evident upon multiple listens. While the drum programming is certainly adequate, there is no substitute for live drums. For the most part, the kicks and snare sound good enough, but the programmed nature of the percussion occasionally irked me. The other complaint is really a matter of preference. The album’s standout track, “Furor”,  is also the only track where the band seems to really unleash the metal they're clearly holding in. I wish the band let loose a few more times throughout The Omega Experiment; however, too much gusto might detract from the sound the band has cultivated.Overall, The Omega Experiment has reminded this reviewer how progressive music can be when it’s actually progressive. If the mention of Devin Townsend or Rush makes you want to run to the hills, then The Omega Experiment will not change your viewpoint. However, if you’re looking for a sampling of a new crop of progressive metal acts, then take a careful listen to The Omega Experiment." - Decoy Music
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  • This was originally released in 2004 and has been out of print for some time.  The band has just reissued it but with the inclusion of a newly recorded 10 minute work "The Day The Earth Stood Still".Here is what I wrote many years ago..."Superb debut release from this Massachusetts based prog rock band. Eccentric Orbit is an instrumental quartet with an odd lineup - bass, drums, keyboards and wind-controlled synths. The band is led by bassist Bill Noland and features Mark Cella (M&M Music) on drums.The music of Eccentric Orbit sounds like a long lost album from the 70s. A heavy debt is paid to King Crimson and ELP. Think Red crossed with Tarkus! Mellotrons (real not samples), organ and blazing synth runs got me booging all over Casa Laser's Edge. I haven't heard much good old fashioned prog rock lately - this one has hit me hard. Will easily be a top 10 year end candidate for me. Man o' man this disc has me grinning from ear to ear.  Essential. "
    $12.00
  • Remastered edition with two bonus tracks."Searching for a way to retool their sound, Judas Priest attempted to accentuate their melodic side on Turbo by incorporating synthesizers and '80s pop-metal stylings ("Wild Nights, Hot & Crazy Days" sounds more like Poison, albeit with synths). The restrained songcraft sometimes pays dividends, especially on the synth-driven leadoff track, "Turbo Lover," easily the best song on the record and a successful reimagining of the Priest formula. But often, the band simply sounds directionless, unsure of exactly which path to accessibility it should follow; moreover, the synth-guitar backing and overly polished production give the album an oddly mechanized, processed feel. It certainly doesn't help most of the material, which is often at least competent but rarely inspired enough to make much of an impression. That's unfortunate because Turbo's best moments indicate that with a clearer focus, the album could have been a creative success; however, it's overall Judas Priest's weakest release since Rocka Rolla." - All Music Guide
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  • "When the 'Big Four,' Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth and Anthrax shared a stage together on June 22nd, 2010, in Sofia, Bulgaria, it was the moment their fans had waited decades for. That monumental show was beamed live into over 1000 theaters worldwide via satellite in a special HD cinematic event.On November 2nd, 2010, this legendary concert will be available on DVD and Blu-ray through Warner Bros. Records. 'The Big Four Live From Sofia' includes full shows from all four bands on a two-disc set as well as behind the scenes and interview footage.In addition to the two DVD set and the corresponding Blu-ray, there will be a limited edition 'Super Deluxe' Box Set including the 2 DVD set, five CD's with ALL 5 HOURS of music, a 24 page booklet, a two-sided poster, photos of each band, and a collectable Big 4 guitar pick.These four acts broke out of the underground thrash movement in the 1980's to dominate the metal world, selling millions of records and packing arenas across the globe. Despite huge demand, these musical giants had never shared the same stage. The legendary June 22nd, 2010, concert from the tour's stop of the Sonisphere Festival in Sofia, Bulgaria aired the same day in 79 movie theaters in the U.K, over 450 theaters in over 140 markets in the US, as well as being beamed intotheaters in Europe, Canada, Latin America, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand.In December 2009, the bands announced that they would be joining forces to take part in the traveling Sonisphere Festival for only 7 shows across Europe. This one-time only event, from the Sofia show, made it possible for fans far and wide to participate in what otherwise was a very limited run of dates.Lars Ulrich of Metallica says of this historic show, 'Who would have thought that more than 25 years after its inception, thrash metal's Big Four would not only still be around, be more popular than ever, playing shows together at stadiums all over Europe, and on top of that, coming to a movie theater near you in High Definition (for better or worse??!!). Bring it on!'Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian says, 'Damn, as if this Big 4 tour wasn't exciting enough, now we get to be on the big screen worldwide! Metal at the movies, two big horns up! It is unbelievably gratifying that this means so much to the metal community around the globe. Get your tix, grab some popcorn and get ready to bang your head!'Declares Slayer's Kerry King, 'I can't believe someone didn't make this happen 15 years ago! The fans finally get what they want. I think it's awesome!'Says Megadeth's Dave Mustaine, 'The magnitude of this event hasn't really sunk in yet, and I am thrilled to know that people around the planet will be able to walk into a movie theatre and experience the greatest line up of Heavy Metal in the history of the world!'"
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  • "For a band that quickly evolved into a radio-friendly prog-leaning outfit, it's a wonder that Wishbone Ash started out as the boogie and blues-based group that this debut reveals. If the term "jam band" existed in 1970, Wishbone Ash surely would have been a major player in that genre. As it was, this album stacked up nicely when compared with other British hard rock releases that year. Not as complex or calculated as Led Zeppelin's Led Zeppelin III but definitely more focused than Mott the Hoople's Mad Shadows, Wishbone Ash more closely resembled Benefit by Jethro Tull, a group that hadn't yet adopted its own progressive elements. The dual lead guitar attack of Andy Powell and Ted Turner was a component that none of the above bands possessed, but unfortunately their (shared) lead vocals lacked the punch and authority necessary for hard rock bands to be taken seriously. So while they could rock as loudly and convincingly as virtually anyone, their lead singers, perhaps, held them back from being the force they should have been. The follow-up, Pilgrimage, took steps to rectify Wishbone Ash's odd position, but this album nevertheless opened eyes and ears and revealed to the rock & roll community a band with incredible potential and talent." - Allmusic Guide
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  • New German edition of APSOG arrives at a budget price plus a bonus live DVD (PAL Region 0) of APSOG performed live.
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  • Atmospheric and mysterious. Those were the key words that Arjen Anthony Lucassen had in mind when he started his ambient rock project Ambeon back in 2001. For this, the multi-instrumentalist started a co-operation with singer Astrid van der Veen, a 14 year old super talent that Lucassen had discovered shortly before, and the later Within Temptation drummer Stephen van Haestregt. Ten years after the first release, Ambeon’s only album Fate of a Dreamer is now being released as a digipack with remastered original recordings, some single-edits/remixes and an extra track. The big surprise is a bonus-cd with acoustic versions of various Ambeon songs and many Ayreon classics, which has been Lucassen's flag ship for almost two decades.DeLuxe 2CD Set in Digipack, Original Album, Extensive Booklet,27 Remastered Tracks = 10 tracks Original Album + 17 Bonus Tracks,over 115 minutes of music.Liner notes by Arjen Lucassen.Track listingTMD-070 AMBEON – Fate Of A Dreamer: The Album – The Unplugged RecordingsCHAPTER 1: THE ALBUM1. Estranged 2:512. Ashes 5:293. High 4:154. Cold Metal 6:505. Fate 7:456. Sick Ceremony 3:447. Lost Message 4:338. Surreal 4:389. Sweet Little Brother 6:0810. Dreamer 5:17Bonus Tracks11. Cold Metal 3:48 – Single Version12. Merry-Go-Round 4:4513. High 3:29 – RemixCHAPTER 2: THE UNPLUGGED RECORDINGS1. Actual Fantasy 1:252. Valley of the Queens 2:393. Ashes 3:154. Charm of the Seer 3:295. Castle Hall 4:336. Estranged 2:497. Temple of the Cat 3:328. Isis and Osiris 6:099. High 3:4310. Garden of Emotions 4:3111. Sick Ceremony 3:0212. House on Mars 5:2213. Lost Message 3:4214. Into the Black Hole / Cold Metal 5:10REMASTERED IN THE 24-BIT DOMAIN FROM THE ORIGINAL MASTERS
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  • This was the second album with this lineup assembled by Chick Corea - the first one being released on ECM. Members consisted of Corea (electric piano), Joe Farrell (tenor sax, flute), Stanley Clarke (bass), Airto (drums), Flora Purim (vocals, percussion). This is not the high intensity electric fusion to come. Instead this fits more into the kosmigroov jazz realm. It's electric but without the rock elements instead relying more on Corea's latin heritage.
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  • Exit one guitarist - enter one female singer resulting in a new avant garde direction. While the first album had a quiet classical side this is far more experimental. One can hear an influence from minimalist composers creeping in."Three years passed before Pierrot Lunaire recorded and released the follow-up to their debut album. They returned as a totally refurbished act, with guitarist Caporaletti out and mezzo-soprano extraordinaire Jacqueline Darby in. "Gudrun" is an album that drifts apart from the realms of bucolic melodic prog with a slight dissonant twist; now, the repertoire is design to defy structure and convention, in order to create a sonic journey led by the volatile ruling hands of surprise, radical experimentation, and free form. The link between all tracks is marked by the clicking of a photographic camera, as if each number of the repertoire was some kind of scenario immortalized by the machine and turned into a permanent reminder. If Pierrot Lunaire's previous album was some a catalogue of reflections about the inner world, now Stalteri, Chiocchio and Darby turn their eyes and look at the world in its splendorous chaos and multicolored facets. The 11-minute long title track kicks off the album with a great deal of synth layers and sequenced ornaments, over which Darby's singing, piano lines, stormy guitar leads, and some other occasional stuff lays its print in a daring amalgam. If you can mentally picture a mixture of Klaus Schulze, drumless RIO and Brecht's operettas, then you may have an idea about what I'm trying to describe here (perhaps not too successfully). In sharp contrast, now comes a subtle piano nocturne titled 'Dietro il Silenzio', which sounds quite Satie-inspired to me: a really beautiful piece where the silent voids are as important as the actual piano sounds. The following number is a two part chanting displayed upon disturbing guitar and synth soundscapes: in the middle, a piano and conga drums revisit Darby's line with an air of simplicity that seems to portray some sort of high-spirited joy. 'Gallia' is a Darby-penned number, mostly a showcase for her well crafted dissonant operatic stuff, while her fellow men once again indulge themselves in a background of random dissonances on electric guitar and synthesizer. 'Giovane Madre' is the most symphonic (or should I say the least anti-symphonic) number. It basically consists of a recurring attractive motif on organ and synth, solidly founded on a 6/8 pattern laid by Chiocchio's bass and guest drummer Massimo Buzzi; somewhere in the middle, a gentle, joyful Renaissance-like motif enters abruptly, creating a weird tension that directly defies its own delicate beauty. Simultaneously, you can hear Darby whispering or laughing in some places. Many times I've found myself listening to this particular track three or four times in a row only to take pleasure in the challenging effect that the structure of this track causes in me as a listener. The weirdness never ends. 'Sonde in Profonditá' starts with the sound of an old radio speech, accompanied by a tenuous, evocative organ theme, with sitar, synth and acoustic guitar providing some additional colours until it all disappears under crashing waves. 'Morellia' begins with a Baroque-inspired piano solo, alternating with a Renaissance-like zither melodic line: then comes Darby, together with the piano, string synth, bass and drums (once again, guest Buzzi makes an appearance), delivering the most moving passage in the album. This same structure is reiterated, until a Cabaret-piano motif accompanies Darby's dramatic laughter. This piece is inscrutable, yet it manages to move the listener's heart in a way that they can't fully understand. Finally, 'Mein Armer Italiener' closes down the album with a successive combination of parody military march, psychedelic rock, pastoral stuff, slogan chanting - all comprised in an ambience of radical dadaist humour that may somehow remind us of Zappa's most theatrical pieces. An excellent but not recommendable prog recording due to its massively cryptic nature: anyway, "Gudrun" deserves to be regarded as a classic of the most experimental side of 70s progressive rock." - ProgArchives
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  • At this point with The Flower Kings on hiatus, Jonas Reingold's "other" band Karmakanic has stepped up to the plate and assumed the mantle of Swedish neo kings. Highly melodic - dare I say catchy? - with chops from hell. Goran Edman is a great vocalist that is chameleon-like in his ability to fit in with a prog rock or metal band. When will Lalle Larsson get acknowledged as one of the best keyboardists in progressive music? This guy continues to amaze. Reingold sounds like he's strapped on a Rickenbacker and is out-Squiring the old man. Fans of The Flower Kings and Spock's Beard need to get on board if they already haven't. These guys throw it down with the best of 'em. Highly recommended.
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  • I'm going to get straight to the point.  If you are a fan of female fronted metal you must own this album.  The Human Contradiction is a complete triumph.  It finds the band returning a bit to their roots.  There are still poppy elements - that's part of their core sound - but there is a heaviness that will remind you of Lucidity.  Nightwish's Marco Hietala returns contributing on clean vocals. Also back is Orphanage vocalist George Oosthoek who is one of the best growlers in the metal scene.  Arch Enemy vocalist Alissa White-Gluz makes a guest appearance.Timo Somers' guitar riffs are chunkier, Charlotte's voice is impeccable as always, and Martijn's keyboards are simply epic.  The album was recorded at Studio Fredman and sounds massive.  Weaving the whole album together is a sci-fi theme borrowed from the writings of Octavia Butler.This is an album filled with a enough earworm hooks to drive you crazy but at the same time its heavy!  For my taste its a top 10 album for 2014.  BUY OR DIE!Limited edition 2CD mediabook edition.  The bonus CD contains 2 additional new studio tracks as well as live tracks and two orchestral versions of tracks from The Human Contradiction.  Essential.
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  • "ssa, the Norwegian Rock Diva, is back with a blistering new album Can't Stop . Since her debut Sign of Angels , she has often been compared to such music stars as Celine Dion, Avril Lavine and Amy Lee (Evanesence).Issa has created her own style and approach to Melodic Rock by mixing her peculiar and unique melodic sensibility with a rocking attitude which is not all too common in today's Pop singers: real rock with a commercial sheen.The new album Can't Stop sees Issa taking a stab at some obscure and classic Melodic Rock tracks originally performed by Mark Free, Aviator, 21 Guns, Atlantic, Regatta and othersProduced by Hardlines's Alessandro Del Vecchio, Can't Stop shows that Issa is a true rock diva on the rise, who is bent on alighting the hearts and minds of Melodic Rock fans for years to come."
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