Illusions

SKU: ARISE059
Label:
Arise Records
Category:
Power Metal
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I dug their first album but this one may even be better! Great melodic power metal with plenty of prog elements (LOVE those keyboards). Nacho Ruiz reminds of a ballsier Andre Matos and Mamen Castano (the band's female singer) backs him adding a fuller sound to the vocals. Both singers have great range. I don't understand why these guys aren't better known. For 5 bucks you are crazy if you pass on this one - it's worth 3 times the price. Highly recommended.

Product Review

Tue, 2010-06-08 09:54
Rate: 
0
I actually took a chance and bought this on a whim not knowing what to expect. I liked the idea of a band combining a female vocalist with a male vocalist and the male not growling! From that aspect I really like the album. What I dislike the most about the album is the lack of catchy hooks and choruses. The music is crunchy at times and beautiful at times, with a good amount of time changes. In conclusion this will appeal to most people that like keyboard driven, prog-metal, but not so much so to the melodic rock fan.
Tue, 2010-06-08 09:54
Rate: 
0
I cannot believe I bought this CD at a bargain price, cause it has landed on my all-time top-ten list of prog-metal albums. Keyboards are not over the top. Male & female vocals absolutely compliment each other. Heavy riffs, but very melodic vocals. Nothing bores me about this album. This is a must buy.
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Product Review

Tue, 2010-06-08 09:54
Rate: 
0
I actually took a chance and bought this on a whim not knowing what to expect. I liked the idea of a band combining a female vocalist with a male vocalist and the male not growling! From that aspect I really like the album. What I dislike the most about the album is the lack of catchy hooks and choruses. The music is crunchy at times and beautiful at times, with a good amount of time changes. In conclusion this will appeal to most people that like keyboard driven, prog-metal, but not so much so to the melodic rock fan.
Tue, 2010-06-08 09:54
Rate: 
0
I cannot believe I bought this CD at a bargain price, cause it has landed on my all-time top-ten list of prog-metal albums. Keyboards are not over the top. Male & female vocals absolutely compliment each other. Heavy riffs, but very melodic vocals. Nothing bores me about this album. This is a must buy.
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  • “Known/Learned’ is the third album from this thought provoking progressive band from Brisbane, Australia.  It’s a sprawling 2CD collection of themes and moments, captured between recurring characters. While never explicitly told in the traditional vein of the ‘concept album’, the imagery of Known/Learned depicts fragmented moments in the lives of a father and his daughter, their loss, their love, their journey. A bittersweet love song for life.Occupying a unique place in the Australian progressive music scene, Arcane’s transcendental live performances and 2009’s critically acclaimed, dark and enigmatic concept album 'Chronicles Of The Waking Dream' have earned them a inimitable reputation as one of Australia’s premier progressive rock bands.Sharing stages with artists as diverse as Anathema (UK), Soilwork (Swe), Queensryche (USA), Dead Letter Circus, Ne Obliviscaris and hundreds more, Arcane's live show, often accompanied by a backdrop of staggering visualizations, is a vast sensory experience.Arcane's immersive sound, and the vocals of Jim Grey quickly found favor throughout Australia, headlining the annual Progfest tour, providing touring support for Ne Obliviscaris, and performing to capacity crowds at Sonic Forge Festival in Melbourne. A crowd funding campaign in July, 2013 heralded the 2015 release of 'Known/Learned' a 16 track conceptual double album. Arcane blends the technicality of progressive metal with the atmospheric intensity of bands like Tool, Riverside and Anathema.  The world is about to discover what their Australian fan base already knows – that Arcane is a rising star in the world of progressive music.
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  • 2005 deluxe remastered edition of the bands 1986 magnum opus, the last one to feature John Arch on vocals. This elaborate set features two cds and one live DVD. Disc One is the remastered version of the album. Disc Two features unreleased live and demo tracks. Disc Three is an NTSC Region 0 live DVD of a live gig from 1986. Mike Portnoy wrote the liner notes.
    $15.00
  • "There are some bands that have been around for years that seemingly just go through the motions of putting out material not worthy of their own back catalog. Then there are bands like Rage that take the sum of its 29 years (26 as Rage, 3 as Avenger) and continually put out the highest quality pure metal. Rage has seen many stylistic changes in those years from the power metal origins of “Reign of Fear” to the ultra thrashy “Perfect Man” back to the power metal on “Trapped” and “The Missing Link” to the total classical/metal collaboration of “Lingua Mortis” (which came three years before Metallica even thought of “S & M”), then to the metal opera of “Ghosts” and now to power/thrash/groove of “21” (and all the albums in between). The one constant through it all is that Rage has been one of the mainstays of metal and the one band any metal fan can always count on to release albums that get better with age.It takes just one pass to hook the listener into the Rage web (or “strings on a….”) of thrash, power, groove and melody on this album, which is one of the best the band has ever released. “21” represents not only the “blackjack” theme that the intro and title track suggest, but it is the exact number of full length releases the band unleashed since the 1984 Avenger release “Prayers of Steel.”One thing is certain, Rage is at its most deadly as a three piece, which saw the band’s finest releases from 1988-1993 and again from 2001-present. In 2001, with the release of “Welcome to the Other Side,” Rage unleashed one of its biggest assets, guitar god Victor Smolski. Smolski’s combination of crushing riffs, blistering solos, and unleavened groove are some of the best in metal and simply made the band that much better. However, there would be no Rage if not for bassist/vocalist/founding member Pete “Peavy” Wagner. His vocals are as unmistakable as his proficient bass playing (check out “Eternally”) added to his already larger than life presence.On “21” the band has never sounded heavier and tighter. The listener is treated to an entree of soaring melody with thick gravy like groove over a bed of punishing riffs. From top to bottom, there is no discernible flaw. “Twenty One” sets the crushing tone along with “Forever Dead” and “Feel My Pain” until you get to the album’s biggest surprise “Serial Killer.” Here is one thing I haven’t heard on a Rage album...Peavy doing near death growls on the verses following a woman’s loud shriek at the onset, which is silhouetted with riff upon riff and melody upon melody. It’s the wildest track the band has ever written. “Psycho Terror” follows it up showing the younger bands exactly how to properly choke a riff, lay on the groove, and make it an album favorite.“Death Romantic” takes on the sore topic of love in a way only Rage can. “Destiny” comes very close to the sound of “Perfect Man.” “Black And White” and “Concrete Wall” fill the gaps with the signature Rage style. “Eternally” takes what would be an “average” power ballad for any other band and “Rage-ifies” it with chunky riffs and unprecedented melody.Rage has been a model of consistency and power in a German scene that the group helped define. “21” is another in a stellar catalog of albums that span three decades and should be celebrated as one of the band’s finest." - Metal Underground
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  • Remastered edition with two bonus tracks."After the failed experiment of Turbo, Judas Priest toned down the synths and returned to the basics, delivering a straight-ahead, much more typical Priest album with Ram It Down. The band's fan base was still devoted enough to consistently push each new album past the platinum sales mark, and perhaps that's part of the reason Ram It Down generally sounds like it's on autopilot. While there are some well-constructed songs, they tend toward the generic, and the songwriting is pretty lackluster overall, with the up-tempo title track easily standing out as the best tune here. And even though Ram It Down backed away from the territory explored on Turbo, much of the album still has a too-polished, mechanical-sounding production, especially the drums. Lyrically, Ram It Down is firmly entrenched in adolescent theatrics that lack the personality or toughness of Priest's best anthems, which -- coupled with the lack of much truly memorable music -- makes the record sound cynical and insincere, the lowest point in the Rob Halford era. Further debits are given for the cover of "Johnny B. Goode."" - All Music Guide
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  • When it comes to Dream Theater influenced prog metal no one does it like the Italians. Zen, Scenario, Mystere De Notre Dame, Solid Vision...the list goes on and on. Add Daedalus to the list as well. Like most of these bands mentioned there is a common flaw - lets call it a lapse of originality and a vocalist with good range but an accent. But all of these bands transcend these deficiencies with great chops and excellent compositions. Basically what I'm saying is that if you are a fan of the genre you are going to love this disc...just keep an eye out the window for the Originality Police. This is actually the second album for this band from Genoa. They went first class all the way - Roland Grapow mixed it and Rob Tyrant contributed some guest vocals. Noted illustrator Mark Wilkinson did the artwork. Highly recommended.
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  • Been years since I heard this one and now we were able to dig up some copies from the back of a dusty warehouse.  Treasure Land made two albums - this is the first.  Here's the good part - guitarist Jonas Hornqvist plays in a neoclassical style.  The music has strong progressive overtones.  Here's the not so good part - Zenny Gram's vocals aren't the best.  For the band's next album they got a much better singer but they dumbed down their music and it was far less interesting.
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  • "Markus Grosskopf has been a busy man for more than twenty years and he is an even busier man now. The bass player of Germany's melodic metal legend HELLOWEEN has just released the 12th studio album called "Gambling With The Devil" with his band and is preparing for yet another extensive world tour with one of the most successful metal acts of the present. And Grosskopf has one more ace up his sleeve: it is called Markus Grosskopf's Bassinvaders and it shows a completely new side of his musical talent. Bassinvaders has been a creation of Markus while sitting in a bar and enjoying a few drinks. There it was that he got inspired to an impressive idea: a heavy rock record without any guitars at all. Could such a concept work out? Indeed it can! As you will experience on this first Bassinvaders-record called "Hellbassbeaters" lying in front of you. It contains all basic elements a heavy rock song really needs and so much more. You got the strong vocals, rhythmic bass, intoxicating drums and even bass & twin bass solo parts. What you hear is what you get: 100 % genuine heavy / rock record with absolutely no discordant guitar note on it at all. To guarantee a great variety of different influences Markus invited some well-known singing bass players from the German metal scene to join the band. And they didn't need an extra invitation. In DESTRUCTION's enfant terrible Schmier, SODOM's frontman Tom Angelripper and RAGE boss Peavy, Markus found some real Bassinvaders-friends. To push it even further Markus invited a few of his bass heroes to play solos on some of the tracks. When he started searching for support making this album excellent he expected to get a cautious response of 2 or 3 musicians. He ended up organizing more than 13 people for a solo appearance on the album. They named themselves - like the album title - the Hellbassbeaters: Billy Sheehan (Steve Vai, ex-Mr. Big, ex-David Lee Roth), Rudy Sarzo (DIO, ex-Ozzy Osbourne, ex-Whitesnake, ex-Quiet Riot), Lee Rocker (Stray Cats), Marco Mendoza (Thin Lizzy, ex-Whitesnake, ex-Ted Nugent), DD Verni (Overkill), Wyzard (Mother's Finest), Dirk Schlächter (Gamma Ray), Joey Vera (Armored Saint, Fates Warning, ex-Anthrax), Stig Pedersen (D.A.D), Nibbs (Saxon), Tobias Exxel (Edguy), Jens Becker (Grave Digger, ex-Running Wild), Dennis Ward (Pink Cream 69), Peter Baltes (Accept), Jan S. Eckert (Masterplan) and Michael Müller (Jaded Heart). Markus has also invited some guest singers for the songs he wrote: Apollo Papathanasio (Firewind, Time Requiem, Evil Masquerade, Majestic) and the frontman of the legendary Danish stadium rock band D.A.D - Jesper Binzer. While the guest drummers are André Hilgers (Rage, Axxis, Silent Force) and Stefan Arnold (Grave Digger). This guest list and the killer line-up make the first Bassinvaders-album something very special but it's not only about the name dropping. Songs like Boiling Blood, We Live, Voices, Razorblade Romance, Armageddon or the storming Bassinvaders version of the classic Helloween anthem Eagle Fly Free are proving that Markus' late night idea won't be just a one-off slap, but the foundation for another "battlefield" for the always smiling bassist."
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  • I'm always amazed at the number of metal bands coming out of Italy over the years...but more amazing is the high batting average. Infinita Symphonia don't do anything out of the ordinary but what the do - they do REALLY well. Solid melodic metal with speed and prog tossed in. Vocals from Luca Micioni are quite good and he's even helped out by Tim "Ripper" Owens and Fabio Leone. There is a little bit of the speed (and maybe even a little cheese) of Rhapsody Of Fire but think more in terms of Pagan's Mind and Edguy. Keep an eye on these guys - they could be players.
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  • "Factory of Dreams is a symphonic metal gothic project consisting of Hugo Flores and Jessica Lehto. Hugo produces and creates all the music while Jessica provides her beautiful vocals. Following their album POLES in 2008, Factory of Dreams are back with a new production bringing a whole new epic and progressive feel to the sound crafted on their debut. More complex, heavier, faster and at the same time catchy, this is a huge album, featuring the hallmark of Factory of Dreams, with great melodic sense and shivering moments and a great cast of guest singers and performers. As a highlight, the near 10 minute Epic E-motions, and the beautiful track Sonic Sensations depicting a World created by Sound and Music."
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  • Remastered with 2 bonus tracks."Given the less violent moniker Hell Bent for Leather for U.S. release (as if that makes any sense), Killing Machine is a transitional album between the progressive-minded complexity of Stained Class and the more commercialized stadium rock of British Steel. In terms of image, however, Judas Priest comes into their own here, creating modern heavy metal fashion by donning studded leather outfits that recalled biker subculture (a connection Rob Halford supported by riding a Harley-Davidson on-stage) but -- in one of metal's supreme ironies -- actually came from gay S&M clubs. Now looking as fierce as their music sounded, Priest set about scaling back the ambition of Stained Class, making the songs more concise and immediate, with simpler structures and fewer underlying subtleties. However, the band largely maintains its then-trademark aggression; the simpler songs actually allow them to hike the tempo on the proto-speed metal numbers even more, and there are hints of blues-rock creeping back into the overall sound, complementing the newfound tough-guy swagger in the band's attitude. At the same time, the relative simplicity also provides the first glimpse of the band's more commercial instincts. If these competing impulses don't make for their most cohesive album, it's also true that most of what's here was still pretty peerless for its time. If Stained Class was the death album, Killing Machine is the sex album -- "Delivering the Goods," the title track, "Burnin' Up," and "Evil Fantasies" are all loaded with S&M imagery, while "Running Wild" is a nightlife party anthem, and "Before the Dawn" a morose heartbreak ballad that nonetheless works in context as the downside of all this carnality. "Delivering the Goods" in particular ranks with their best straightforward rockers, while "Hell Bent for Leather" pushes ever farther towards speed metal proper, crystallizing Halford's leather-and-motorcycle obsessions into one of the band's signature statements. The other title track, "Killing Machine," is a midtempo stomper about a contract hitman, and there's yet another brilliantly reinvented cover song, as the band transforms the Peter Green-era Fleetwood Mac chestnut "The Green Manalishi (With the Two-Pronged Crown)" into a heavy, sinister groover. Of the more commercial material, the anthemic chorus of "Evening Star" leaves the best impression, while "Rock Forever" is their first explicit ode to heavy metal itself (and there would be many, many more to come). The uneasiest implications for the future come from "Take on the World," a lunkheaded stadium shout-along that gave the band its first British hit single, and is clearly patterned after Queen's "We Will Rock You." Occasional missteps and all, Killing Machine closes the book on Judas Priest's early period, which constitutes some of the most influential heavy metal ever recorded. The flood of NWOBHM talent they'd inspired was about to be unleashed on the record-buying public, and henceforth, Priest was intent on reaping the rewards. They would remain a vital force in their second, more commercial phase (more so than some fans of their late-'70s classics might care to admit), but their work of redefining the genre had largely been completed." - Allmusic Guide
    $8.00
  • Well done debut effort from this Italian progressive band. The Italians always seem to have an affinity for emulating Dream Theater well and it seems as though they are a heavy influence on Moonlight Comedy as well. There is also a strong melodic content that echoes bands like Vanden Plas or Arena. As with most of these bands from Italy, the singer has a bit of an accent but it's nothing objectionable. 2004 brought us Mindkey and Moonlight Comedy. Perhaps Italy is awaking from it's dormancy and producing quality metal again....
    $14.00
  • "The debut recording from the Dixie Dregs (The Great Spectacular is considered a demo) stands as one fusion's high-water marks. This music is wholly original and played with a freshness and vigor that had begun to wane in a genre that was becoming a model in self-parody. The influences here are plentiful, but it is the country roots that provide the music with its vitality. Founder/guitarist Steve Morse proved to be an important new guitarist, offering an inimitable style with the technique the music demands. The music is complex and challenging, but that's easy to overlook due to the band's sunny approach. While they would go on to create more fully realized recordings, this one proved that fusion had a soul." - Allmusic Guide
    $5.00