Mandylion (2 CD Reissue)

New 2 CD reissue of the classic first album to feature Anneke van Giersbergen (chronologically speaking it was the band's third album). The bonus disc contains rare b-side tracks, a load of unreleased demos and the video to "Leaves".

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  • "Back in 2008, Arkan helped to expand the diversity of metal even further by including Arabic and oriental sounds in brutal death metal with the “Hilal” album. Although not without its flaws, the release showed that metal can’t be pegged down and all fans of the genre should learn to expect the unexpected. In the three year interim, Arkan has matured and progressed this burgeoning sub-genre of “oriental metal” to create an album that isn’t just a mashup of two diverse styles, but a complete package that will be hard to top in future releases.Like with its predecessor “Hilal” (reviewed here), the Arabic sounds and influences rarely detract from the heaviness on the album. Rather than being a primarily symphonic metal experience, “Salam” sticks fairly consistently to a heavy vibe. The first half of the disc tends to be more crushing than the second half, which has more instrumental interludes, but overall the album is constantly on a simmer getting ready to explode with death metal at any given moment.This time around the band also makes frequent use of clean female vocals for an added melodic element alongside the deep death growls, and Kobi Farhi of Orphaned Land even makes a guest appearance on the song “Deus Vult.” Besides simply changing up the vocal styles, the music itself is much more varied and willing to explore new territory than in the last release. Rather than being relentlessly brutal in some parts and then completely ethnic and melodic in others, the songs instead go for a measured and properly paced assault that blends the two. The tracks also have consistently more staying power this time around, with elements of other metal styles working their way into the guitar playing.The 37 second instrumental “Common Ground” is where the disc shifts into a more melodic focused atmosphere. It’s not clear if anything is supposed to be read into the length and title of the song, such as if the band is trying to say there’s not enough common ground or common ground is only a small step away from the various religions of the world. Overall the song titles and lyrics seem to head in a direction similar to Orphaned Land, touching on issues of how religions impact the world.For anyone who liked the idea of Orphaned Land but wanted a much stronger death metal presence, “Salam” is a must-hear album. The band’s second full-length outing is a fantastic blend of modern heavy death metal with traditional Middle Eastern sounds." - Metal Underground
    $7.00
  • Excellent debut release from this progressive folk band from Italy.  The band is led by multi-instrumentalist Valerio Smaldoni who sings (in English) and plays keyboards and some guitar.  The music has a definite prog flavor particularly from the keyboard work - some nice atmospheric Mellotron-type sounds as well as Mini-moog soloing.  Guitarwork is acoustic based that never gets overly agressive.  I'm reminded of Celeste and W&W period Genesis.  This is the kind of thing I can listen to as a Sunday morning wake up call.  
    $18.00
  • "Every month that passes seems to bring more evidence that the NWOBHM revival continues to gather pace, with a plethora of bands using the up and at 'em riffage and soaring twin guitars to create albums that firmly nod towards the movement made most famous by the likes of Iron Maiden and Saxon. Newest New Wavers on the block this month are Sweden's Katana, who not only sound like they were raised on a diet of Maiden, Priest and Accept, but who also rather worryingly would appear to have raided the wardrobe of these bands, as well as the slightly less leather obsessed acts of the era with red trousers and stripey jackets (along with a nice perm) giving the band's promo shots a genuinely retro feel. As with nearly all metal and progressive acts coming out of Scandinavia these days, Katana are a tight unit that manage to show a great deal of musical skill and talent across what is a rip roaring, if predictable set of songs. Dip into this debut album at any point and twin lead howls of mid period Maiden, or the crunching blasts of Judas Priest abound from the speakers with an audible enthusiasm. That more than anything else makes it hard not to smile as these well tread themes are given a rigorous polish by Katana and while it may be impossible not to suggest that there is absolutely zero in the way of imagination or originality on show on Heads Will Roll, the songs are actually irresistibly enjoyable. Yes singer Johan Bernspang does fire out too many Dickinson like "Ooohhh Ohhhh Ohhhhhh's" and the sprawling bass in the intro of "Quest For Hades" screams Steve Harris, but that doesn't stop the likes of humungously riffed "Rebel Ride", or the galloping romp of "Livin' Without Fear" being great slabs of rollickingly heavy metal. Nothing new, but an impressive start none the less." - Sea Of Tranquility
    $14.00
  • "Power metal has always been as fun as it is ridiculous. I may be overstepping my bounds, but if any bands care to disagree, let their dragons smite me where I stand. Dark Moor has been around since, what feels like, the beginning of time. Actually, it was closer to the late '90s when _Shadowland_ was released. Since their glorious debut into the golden halls of classical influenced power metal, the band has gone through serious line-up changes, including the 2003 departure of vocalist Elisa Martin. I would say that Dark Moor has changed drastically since 1999, but then again I would be overstepping my bounds. Fans have been divided over Martin led Dark Moor versus the new line-up with rich tenor Alfred Romero taking vocal duties. _Ancestral Romance_ is the band's eighth album, continuing the tradition of making music which sounds like battle themes for "Final Fantasy" games. _Ancestral Romance_ travels down well worn paths dug and paved by Blind Guardian, Helloween and Stratovarius. In fact, Dark Moor does nothing which breaks tradition with European power metal as well as previous releases. Despite its conceptual shortcomings, _Ancestral Romance_ does everything it should, at the right time and with the level of energy which soars straight through a vaulted roof.Stark realism hasn't always been a popular subject for power metal, as most albums are dedicated to high fantasy and various forms of speculative fiction. _Ancestral Romance_ deviates slightly with its pastoral paintings dedicated to Spanish folklore. If I could describe a song as framed and gilded in ornate gold, I would. While there is some historic truth to many songs, the level of fiction present is enough to make Rhapsody of Fire blush. Everything is inspired by actual events, and those events have been dramatized, exaggerated and heavy diffused. There are some obvious Spanish songs, such as the Don Quixote ballad " Tilt at Windmills", while others are more specific, like the Rodrigo Díaz de Vivar centered "Mio Cid". The Spanish Golden Age is usually not a popular period of inspiration, however, "Ah, Wretched Me" and its tribute to Pedro Calderón de la Barca says otherwise. _Ancestral Romance_ reads like the syllabus to a grad level Spanish literature class. It's exclusivity and somewhat obscure subject matter makes this portion of the record a highlight and selling point.There are, however, downfalls such as the middle selection entitled "Just Rock". I would try to brush this song off as a poor translation, but anything named "Just Rock" has one unfortunate conclusion. The congratulatory nature of "Just Rock" and masculine celebration of music in general feels silly as a midpoint pep rally which no one asked for. I am not pointing any fingers, but "Just Rock" may or may not have the lyrics "You feel the beat, you get a shock / when your soul harmonized with rock". This song completely disrupts a perfect afternoon with a coerced battle hymn. Dark Moor interrupts your picnic by dragging their muddy feet on the blanket. Luckily, after this shipwreck, the album moves along swimmingly until the end._Ancestral Romance_ could also be praised for its position on tempo. Speed, for Dark Moor, isn't necessarily the end goal as with most power metal. While the ferocity of DragonForce and Sonata Artica is fun, it is sometimes treated as a technical checkmate. Dark Moor coasts at midspeed while still showing off technical prowess and unnecessary bass solos. The cruising speed of Manowar's _In Glory Ride_ and Iced Earth's _Night of the Stormrider_ worked fine in the past and works again for _Ancestral Romance_.It is hard to fault a band for doing everything with textbook style and predictable grace. Dark Moor has made it apparent they intend on skipping forward with little to no change. There is some admiration granted to an artist working through a style over the course of eight albums. Each album is another step in becoming folk heroes or possibility having their faces engraved on coins. _Ancestral Romance_ , for better or worse, is everything you expect it to be and nothing more." - chroniclesofchaos.com
    $6.00
  • "Standard DVD Edition. 2013 live release from the Tampa, Florida-based Heavy Metal outfit. Since Dystopia was released in October of 2011, Iced Earth has been on the attack in a big way, playing more shows in the past year than in the previous 10 years...combined! Early on in the World Tour the band decided that they wanted to capture this newfound energy and passion on film and tape. When the offer came in to film at the ancient Kourion Theater in Limassol, Cyprus, they were immediately attracted to that idea. The history and culture there, as well as the Cypriot audience, which the band experienced in December 2011, solidified the decision to record in Cyprus. Filming and recording a 2 1/2 hour show in an amphitheater that is 6000 years old and is not set-up for a Rock concert, paired with 40-degree Celsius heat, were just some of the obstacles to overcome. But the finished product makes up for any of the challenges that the band and crew faced on that special night."
    $14.00
  • "It took almost 20 years for German power metal masters IRON SAVIOR to release a live DVD/CD. The band, founded in 1996 by Piet Sielck, Kai Hansen (Gamma Ray) and Thomen Stauch (ex-Blind Guardian), has unleashed eight studio albums since then and has just recently issued a reworked version (remixed, remastered, partly re-recorded) of their Megatropolis album, titled 'Megatropolis 2.0'. Now with their first ever DVD, IRON SAVIOR will satisfy their fans again completely: 'Live At The Final Frontier' includes the band's recent hometown concert (Hamburg, Germany January 2015) on DVD and 2CDs (as package in digipack format). Additional bonus (video) material (backstage/concert) rounds off this extensive package, which is a must-have for all IRON SAVIOR fans!"
    $19.00
  • New art rock project from Tim Bowness (No Man) and Giancarlo Erra (Nosound). This is simmering atmospheric progressive music that will definitely appeal to the fanbase of both No Man and Nosound - as well as Porcupine Tree and David Sylvian. Very low key atmospheric music created by an amazing array of talent including: Peter Hammill (Van Der Graaf Generator), Colin Edwin (Porcupine Tree), Robert Fripp(King Crimson), Steven Wilson (Porcupine Tree, No-Man etc), Julianne Regan (All About Eve), Jim Matheos (OSI/Fates Warning) and Ricard Huxflux Nettermalm (Paatos). 21st Century Chillout Man!
    $6.00
  • Incredible warehouse find.  Scored a small horde of these and I can pass them on to you at an amazing price."Gamma Ray! Undoubtedly one of the most important names in contemporary, classic Heavy Metal, and thee most respected and influential German band in the genre. Fronted by Kai Hansen, following his departure from Helloween, Gamma Ray has become one of the most prominent bands in European Heavy Metal. "To The Metal" is the 10th studio album in 21 years of worldwide success and a new diamond in their never-ending experimental creativity. The Special Edition contains a bonus DVD in HD with interview, rehearsals, live studio sessions and 3 videoclips."
    $3.00
  • Its been six years since the last release from this Louisiana band.  Years ago I mentioned how much they sound like Porcupine Tree.  Well not a lot has changed in this respect.  If you are a fan of Steven Wilson and Porcupine Tree you'll find that Abigail's Ghost drinks from the same well.  In fact, of all the bands that bear the musicial DNA of Mr. Wilson, I would say that Abigail's Ghost do it the best.  So getting this out of the way I'm pleased to say that Black Plastic Sun is the band's best work.  Its what contemporary progressive music should be.  Melodic through out with room for stunning solos.  Overall the album is very dynamic - a nice contrast of heavy guitar driven music and heartfelt balladry.  This is not your father's prog.  BUY OR DIE!
    $12.00
  • Superb return to form from these German masters of melodic progressive metal. Beyond Daylight exhibits many similarities to The God Thing and may well prove out to be their best effort yet.
    $15.00
  • "'You've got some new Momentum...you better keep on going,' Neal Morse declares in the exciting title track of his new album. After an amazing 2011 that included the release and subsequent world tour of 'Testimony 2', and the release of the five disc set of 'Testimony 2 Live in L.A.', what could Neal possibly do to follow that? 'That's about where I was in January of 2012; waiting and wondering what was next. Then, Mike (Portnoy) had an open window at the end of January, so I booked him and Randy (George) to come to Nashville to record. But I had no album! Fortunately, an explosion of creativity happened that far exceeded our expectations...'Featuring guitar work of six string legend Paul Gilbert, and of course, the stellar drumming of long time partner Mike Portnoy, 'Momentum' is a musical thrill ride that will leave you breathless! Everything you'd ever want in a Neal Morse album is here; going prog elements, hooky pop choruses, intricate vocal weaving, blistering musicianship and beautiful melodies are all present and accounted for. Highlights: 'Thoughts Pt 5', the perfect sequel to the earlier Spock's Beard classics, 'Weathering Sky', rock/pop brilliance and 'World Without End', clocking in at 33:51, this is the ultimate prog epic from the man who practically invented the term.Also featured on the album is Neal's newest find, Brazilian guitarist Adson Sodre and other members of Neal's new live band. With its surprising directness, depth and pure prog exhilaration, 'Momentum' is quite possibly the ultimate Neal Morse album."
    $16.00
  • This is without question the most "prog" album The End has released on their label. Unexpect are a unique 7 piece ensemble from Quebec. It's somewhat hard to dissect this avant metal band but the closet comparison I can come up with is Sleepytime Gorilla Museum. Musicianship is insane - be it guitar, violin, keys, drums, or 9-string bass. The vocals are a predominantly clean mix of dual male/female harmonizing. It can be a cacophonous mix of shifting meters and then gorgeous melodies - all with the space of 30 seconds. A real grower of an album that really grabs your attention. Highly recommended.
    $10.00
  • When progressive rock icon Neal Morse was preparing to tour his highly acclaimed 2012 studio release, “Momentum,” he turned to YouTube to audition touring players to support his faithful duo of Mike Portnoy (drums) and Randy George (bass).He had high hopes, but the final players selected from more than 70 applicants dramatically surpassed his expectations. They hit the road for an 8-stop North American tour. And now that band’s epic New York performance is captured on the new “Live Momentum” 2DVD/3CD Box Set.Fortified by the energetic live contributions of Eric Gillette (keyboards, guitars, vocals), Bill Hubauer (keyboards, violin, sax, vocals) and Adson Sodré (guitar and vocals), Morse, Portnoy and George blazed through two lengthy sets that spanned Morse’s entire, highly-heralded catalog, with the exception of material from “Testimony 2,” which was previously captured in 2011’s “Testimony 2: Live in Los Angeles” box set.The setlist is mammoth. The players are virtuosic. Their performances are jaw-dropping. And this dynamic box set documents it all—including a special one-hour behind the scenes look at the tour.It’s a Morse tradition to go big, and this new release unquestionably extends his powerful legacy of merging musical madness with addictive melodies in epic compositions that showcase the masterful musicianship of every member on stage.“Live Momentum” reveals the exceptionally inspired nature of this unique band and leaves listeners andviewers mimicking those in the audience on this tour—shaking their heads and wondering, “How could they possibly top that?”This ENORMOUS 3 cd / 2 dvd set includes 4 hours of video, including and exclusive Tour Documentary and over 3 hours of audio.DVD 11) Momentum2) Weathering Sky3) Author Of Confusion4) The Distance To The Sun5) Testimony Suite (Sleeping Jesus, Prince Of The Power Of The Air, The Promise, Wasted Life)6) Thoughts Part 57) The Conflict (From Sola Scriptura)DVD 21) Question Mark Suite (The Temple Of The Living God, Another World, Entrance, Inside His Presence)2) Fly High3) World Without End4) Crazy Horses5) Sing It High6) King JesusBonus Feature: A Long Strange Journey – Tour Documentary (Edited By Randy George)CD 11) Momentum2) Weathering Sky3) Author Of Confusion4) The Distance To The Sun5) Testimony Suite (Sleeping Jesus, Prince Of The Power Of The Air, The Promise, Wasted Life)CD 21) Thoughts Part 52) The Conflict (From Sola Scriptura)3) Question Mark Suite (The Temple Of The Living God, Another World, Entrance, Inside His Presence)4) Fly High CD31) World Without End2) Crazy Horses3) Sing It High4) King Jesus   
    $15.00
  • 2LP vinyl edition featuring the remixed and remastered version of the unexpurgated Voyage 34. Originally released as a now OOP single in '92, Voyage 34 is the ultimate psychedelic space rock head trip.
    $30.00