My Funny Valentine ($5 Special)

"Miles Davis' concert of February 12, 1964, was divided into two LPs, with all of the ballads put on My Funny Valentine. These five lengthy tracks (specifically, "All of You," "Stella by Starlight," "All Blues," "I Thought About You," and the title cut) put the emphasis on the lyricism of Davis, along with some strong statements from tenor saxophonist George Coleman and freer moments from the young rhythm section of pianist Herbie Hancock, bassist Ron Carter, and drummer Tony Williams. This hour-long LP complements the up-tempo romps of Four & More." - Allmusic

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  • Believe it or not this is where it all began for me. After coming home from school one day I saw Rick Wakeman on the Mike Douglas show. He was this odd looking guy with long blonde hair and a flowing cape to match. He had an arsenal of keyboards making strange sounds...it was "The Battle". That appearance led me down to Sam Goody's to buy my first prog album - Journey To The Centre Of The Earth. Sure it's pompous, overblown, whatever. I still have fond memories of it and love Wakeman's elaborate keyboard work and the band's integration with the orchestra. A personal classic.
    $5.00
  • "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
  • Second DVD of a projected series of four, filmed at Le Triton in Paris in May 2005. This features the current lineup with the added bonus of legendary bassist Jannick Top. Nearly two hours of unadulterated powerful Kobian bliss! Highest recommendation.
    $18.00
  • "It’s been five years since their last album, Buried Alone: Tales Of Crushing Defeat, but in that time, the lord of Knifeworld, Kavus Torabi, has been very busy indeed. He’s been part of Gong and various other bands, hosted a prog radio show with snooker legend Steve Davis (who is in fact, more interesting than people might have ever suspected) and of course spent his time working on more Knifeworld material.Since his days with Monsoon Bassoon, Torabi has always been someone who writes dense yet strangely hookladen songs. With Knifeworld things are no different, if anything this album is about as ambitious as anything in Torabi’s long and extensive career to date. The Unravelling is an eight song cycle, is performed as an octet, and is nothing if not grandiose in its intensions. The idea of a song cycle might well sound pretentious, and perhaps it is, but what keeps The Unravelling from unravelling into a unwieldy mess is Torabi’s deft songwriting nous and keen ear for a hook. These songs might well form a cycle, but they are all quite capable of operating independently too.Opening track I Can Teach You How To Lose A Fight starts in muted fashion with delicate keyboards and strummed acoustic guitars complimenting Mel Woods’ beautiful but understated vocals. The whirring of clock parts and machinery in the background give a wonky Victorian feel, but also suggest that the cogs that drive the album are slowly clunking into life. Before long the full band has launched into a freakish prog-hymn, like a kind of feral Rick Wakeman freakout. “Why’d you grow those teeth in your heart?” asks Torabi sounding as if his has been chewed up and spat out by an evil Queen. It’s essentially the dialogue of a relationship winding down, but with its winding musical motifs, joyful honking sax parts mixing with solemn vocals and dramatic guitar stabs, the introduction to the album feels like a kind of synopsis of what’s to follow or an overture of sorts. There’s joy, threat, love, anger, fun and a fair bit of magic too.Send Him Seaworthy starts life as a kind of lurching boy’s own adventure, with nautical themes and a sense of wonder seeping into the orchestration, but come the telling conclusion it becomes tale of paranoid love. Don’t Land On Me meanwhile meanders along in a faintly jazzy way until a sharp stabbing rock riff cuts across its bows. Suddenly, it becomes a curious mix of swing, The Osmonds‘ Crazy Horses and Kenny Rogers‘ version of Condition. The Skulls We Buried Have Regrown Their Eyes meanwhile is a woozy old-school nursery rhyme that contains a requisite amount of grotesque imagery.Destroy The World We Love is the pop nugget around which the album truly revolves. It possesses a laid back lollop, a very deliberate hook with the line “secret in your hands” digging deep into the ears early on, but it quickly reveals itself to be an expansive and exquisite journey. Fans of Genesis (and naturally Cardiacs) will find plenty to appreciate here but as usual Knifeworld stop short of being self-indulgent and ensure that the song never disappears up its own firmament.If The Skulls We Buried hinted at something a little unsettling, then This Empty Room Was Once Alive confirms that there is something genuinely creepy lurking under the surface of this album and it just so happens to be in the form of a Victorian ghost story. Fortunately I’m Hiding Behind My Eyes quickly takes over and steers back towards folk inflected prog before things get to terrifying. Once again, the Octet are in fine form creating a bucolic world for the band to inhabit and explore.The key to this album is in its title. It is well written, and beautifully performed, but in order to get the most out of it, a certain amount of unravelling needs to be done. The five year wait has been worthwhile, and Torabi’s Knifeworld seems ready to begin creating its own universe. As strange and creepy as it seems at first, it is fun to spend time exploring." - MusicOMH 
    $15.00
  • Marco Iacobini is an Italian guitarist that frankly has been unknown to me until now.  Apparently his resume is quite extensive and he's played in Europe with some accomplished musicians.  This is his second album and a nice surprise at that.  This is purely fusion - no metal shredding going on.  Iacobini's songs have a melodic emphasis and his playing has some beautiful fluidity.  I'm reminded a bit of Joe Satriani and Steve Lukather.  He must either have a lot of disposable income or really have made a lot of friends - the other musicians on this album are pretty impressive.  Along for the ride are Tony Levin, Dave Weckl, Keith Carlock, Thomas Lang, Stuart Hamm, Billy Sheehan, Philippe Saisse, Carl Verheyen, Joel Taylor, Mike Terrana, Phil Maturano, Bill Bergman and others.  Definitely a lot of heavyweights in there.  Iacobini signed to Thomas Lang's label and I guess as an introduction they are making it available at a very reasonable price.
    $9.00
  • New 2CD live set recorded in North America 1998 and Japan 1999.
    $6.00
  • New album from Guy LeBlanc finds Nathan Mahl with a new lineup and a bit of a new direction as well. The first thing that strikes you is that the overall soundscape is much heavier. Guitars have real CRUNCH. This isn't at all a metal album but its clear that he has been listening a bit to Dream Theater. He lets loose with some devastating keyboard solos that reminds you that this soft spoken guy can play like the devil. There is also a slight AOR sheen to the proceedings but never in a particularly offensive way. Curiously this is a concept album based on Exodus - the story of the Jews exodus from Egypt. Given the subject matter and this reworking of the formula I've of the mind to annoint Nathan Mahl as the Canadian version of Glass Hammer. Lots of similarities the more you dig it. To these ears this is much better than the Heretic trilogy and is highly recommended.
    $8.00
  • "Factory of Dreams is a project uniting multi-instrumentalist Hugo Flores and Jessica Lehto, on vocal harmonies and arrangements.Hugo Flores formed the band "Sonic Pulsar", which released two albums, 'Playing the Universe', in 2003, and 'Out of Place', in 2006. The success of the two albums further inspired Hugo to create a massive multi-album story project under the moniker "Project Creation", from which he released another two albums, 'Floating World' in 2005 and 'Dawn on Pyther' in 2007.In 2008 Hugo was once again inspired, this time by vocalist Jessica Lehto to create new music outside of the style he'd been working. In 2008, the duo released 'Poles'. It was received well critically, and they followed the success with 'A Strange Utopia', in 2009. 'Melotronical' followed in 2011.Jessica Lehto has performed on many outside projects, including recently on Beto Vazquez and Infinity's, 'Beyond Space Without Limits'. Lehto has her own project: 'Once There Was'. She's now also writing music and scripts for TV and movies."This is the kind of album that is a pleasure to experience.'Prelude' is a warning of a conceptual sci-fi future that follows the adventures of Kyra, a unique and mysterious character who holds the key to the Earth's fate. Angela Merrithew narrates the opening as Kyra, as she awakes exhausted and in distress from a dream, to a world in transition. The spacey synth sound effects are some of the best I've heard since last year's masterpiece, Atoma's 'Skylight' The rapidly increasing decibels of the pre-launch rocket sounds will take your mind out of this world. Close your eyes as you are listening to this one. It is as visual as it is an incredible aural experience.More cool spacey synths and keys, offered by Shawn Gordon as 'Strange Sounds' opens, before Jessica Lehto's beautiful soprano voice slices through the mix. Her siren calling sounds are simply ear-bending. Then piano – like keys take over along with growling lead electric guitar and pulsating drums and bass. "The stars are screaming. A storm is coming". Yes, a storm of vicious thrashing electric guitar…and it is fantastic set against Lehto's soprano. Excellent.Shawn Gordon is back to add some more very cool spacey synths as 'Escaping the Nightmare' opens slowly. Then Lehto's voice returns with male vocal support from Flores. The amount of spacey electric guitar solos flying around the soundscape will amaze you.'Angel Tears' opens with piano – like keys and Raquel Schüler on lead vocals. It is a soft song, full of emotion. "Kyra I wanna be with you. Kyra please let me through. Kyra share your dreams with me. Kyra don't shut me out", as destruction across the planet fills the storyline. Power keys, flashing electric guitar licks, heavy bass and drums overwhelm. Mark Ashby provides narration, as Kyra's boyfriend, as the two drive out of the destruction of the collapsing city to the seashore ahead.Nathan Ashby, as the child, opens 'Seashore Dreams' with story narration. Then, Tadashi Goto provides some awesome synth solos. Later Lyris Hung provides expert violin dashes which will be remembered long after the album completes. All this excellent music while Lehto's dream-like voice soars over the soundscape.'Dark Season' opens slowly with excellent synths before slowly growing drum pulses turn into full blown thunder. Magali Luyten's vocals provide a dark and powerful magic to this track.'Sound War' is full of brilliant keys at the opening, before piano like keys take over. Lehto's voice races to catch up to the keys fleetingly dancing across the soundscape as crushing bass, drums and grinding lead electric guitar roar forward.'Hope Garden' offers some of Chris Brown's guest slicing electric lead guitar soloing. Lehto's voice is consistently brilliant as she continues to deliver the spacey storyline. The thundering bass, drums and Brown's electric lead will make this track memorable long after the disc finishes."Show me the way to your mind" from the soft and beautiful voice of Lehto, as Chris Brown's roaring electric guitar solos and Tadashi Goto's synth solos electrify 'Traveling'. "Childhood memories. Hidden and now awaken. Reaching the deep corners of Space. Entering the realm of the Star's Mind..." Yes!'The Neutron Star' is full of Chris Brown's power electric guitar grinding, while Lyris Hung provides soft violin to balance the sound as Lehto and Flores help provide the continuing storyline and vocal effects.Mark Ashby returns to narrate the opening of 'Join Us Into Sound', as Tadashi Goto provides stellar synth solos, while the rushing electric lead guitar, bass, and pounding drums deliver their consistent rhythm.'Playing the Universe' closes the album with soft and dramatic accelerating keys that are some of the best on the album. Then the lead electric guitar explodes as the bass and drums build a powerful wall of sound surrounding the soft flute like keys in the middle. Lehto's siren – like vocals call you from the center of the mix as those electric riffs cut and bend all around you. Nice effect. ;^)This is an album filled with great music and excellent female lead vocalists. The storyline is interesting and the lyrical development is well conceived. Definitely an album you will want to experience with headphones in the comfort of your easy chair…with your eyes closed. Venefica Luna's artwork is simply out of this world. Some of the best I've seen since the 'Master', Ed Unitsky. Let the story unfold as you bask in the glow of the surrounding soundscape." - Sea Of Tranquility
    $3.00
  • "Guitarists Guitarist Paul Gilbert returns to the Shrapnel Label with his new CD, Vibrato which is a testament to Gilbert s stunning songwriting and virtuosic soloing abilities.Vibrato boasts four phenomenal new instrumentals, four new vocal tunes and three riveting live tracks"
    $15.00
  • Perhaps the last great 70's Italian prog album. Symphonic style similar to Yes.
    $9.00
  • Special edition arrives with a bonus DVD of the band performing material from Concrete Gardens filmed at EMGTV."Sound: Tony MacAlpine was one of the Shrapnel label guitarists of the '80s, and also played keyboards for the debut releases of Vinnie Moore and other Shrapnel artists. Tony's debut solo album, "Edge of Insanity," came iout in 1986 - the same year as his first side project, M.A.R.S., with release of the album "Project: Driver." Since that time Tony MacAlpine has released numerous solo albums, participated in collaborations, made live guest appearances, and even acted as part of Steve Vai's backing band. "Concrete Gardens" is Tony's twelfth solo studio album, and is entirely instrumental like the vast majority of Tony's solo work. The album has been in the works since 2013, but took a while to release due to Tony's numerous collaborations and other projects. Jeff Loomis provides a guest guitar solo on the album on the track, "Square Circles." The album contains 12 tracks with a total runtime of just under sixty minutes. The album differs from Tony's previous work by having more of a progressive metal flavor to it, while I think of most of his previous releases as just being straight instrumental rock.The album opens up with the track "Exhibitionist Blvd," with some seriously flanged guitar and a major key melody that builds into something a little different as the track goes on. There is a specific passage that shows the influence that Vai has had on MacAlpine, though I would rank them close to equal in the virtuoso racket. "The King's Rhapsody" opens up with a keyboard intro, played by Tony, of course. Heavy guitars come in and takes the song to a few unexpected places, and actually gets my foot tapping, too - which is an accomplishment for instrumental rock! "Man in a Metal Cage" has some interesting note choices, with some mildly middle-eastern sounds for a few brief moments in the track mixed in with some obligatory sweep tapping. Otherwise, there are several passages working to create several moments of extreme tension. There are a few arpeggiated parts that are reminiscent of some other song that I can't quite place. "Poison Cookies" has a weird jazz-fusion funk feeling going on with it that I definitely appreciated - if for nothing else it changed gears long enough to shake off any monotony I thought the album might be working towards."Epic" was both a more laid back song, but also was very cerebral - the keyboard and guitar parts built on each other in a weird/cool way. "Napoleon's Puppet" very briefly reminded me of some material written by Brendan Small for his album, "Galaktikon," but it had that rhythm part to it that definitely separated it by giving it some incredibly strong groove. "Sierra Morena" is played on piano/keyboard in the intro but guitar, bass and drums come in pretty quickly. The song is named after a mountain range in Spain with the same name. I can't quite connect the music as being descriptive of a mountain range unless they're being written about the context of flying over them. "Square Circles" has some moments in the track that remind me a little bit of King Crimson, though the sense of melody is still a tad more traditional. Jeff Loomis guests on this track for a guitar solo, and it is a fairly outstanding solo in the context of the song, having a good balance of being emotive and twisted."Red Giant" is a pretty intense track, with some more middle-eastern vibes going on, and one of the most engaging and vocal-like melodies from the album, to my ears. "Confessions of a Medieval Monument" definitely grabs a certain type of vibe from the opening, with a cool (but fairly simple) bassline running behind it. This is definitely one of those songs that creates a fertile atmosphere for a little mind movie to play along to it. The way the dynamics are used on this song, as well as the recurring melodic theme, make this easily one of the strongest tracks on the album. The title track, "Concrete Gardens," is interesting with a heavy rhythm guitar and a (initially) much cleaner lead part. Something about this track reminds me of Frank Zappa, which is absolutely a good thing. The album closes out with a song called "Maiden's Wish," which is played on keyboard/piano as a solo piece. It is a fairly light-hearted song to end the album with, and I enjoyed it. If you just listen for the crazy guitar, then you can stop short of "Maiden's Wish." // 8Lyrics: There are none. // 8Overall Impression: I have always been extremely impressed with Tony MacAlpine, and this album just reinforces my opinion. While he may not be quite at the technical/speed level of some other virtuoso guitarists, especially the whole Shrapnel bunch, he makes up for it in a strong sense of feel and musicality. I especially enjoy the melodies he uses as recurring themes in many of his songs. I highly recommend this album to anyone who's a fan of instrumental rock or metal. // 8" - Ultimate-Guitar.com
    $15.00
  • "The first Mahavishnu Orchestra's original very slim catalog was padded out somewhat by this live album (recorded in New York's Central Park) on which the five jazz/rock virtuosos can be heard stretching out at greater length than in the studio. There are only three selections on the disc, all of which were to have been on the group's then-unissued third album -- two of them, guitarist John McLaughlin's "Trilogy: Sunlit Path/La Merede la Mer" and keyboardist Jan Hammer's "Sister Andrea," are proportioned roughly as they were in their studio renditions, while the third, McLaughlin's "Dream," is stretched to nearly double its 11-minute studio length. Each develops organically through a number of sections, and there are fewer lockstep unison passages than on the earlier recordings. McLaughlin is as flashy and noisy as ever on double-necked electric guitar, and Hammer and violinist Jerry Goodman are a match for him in the speed department, with drummer Billy Cobham displaying a compelling, raw power and dexterity to his work as well, especially on the CD edition, which also gives bassist Rich Laird a showcase for his slightly subtler work. Yet for all of the superb playing, one really doesn't hear much music on this album; electricity and competitive empathy are clearly not enough, particularly on the 21-minute "Dream," which left a lot of fans feeling let down at the end of its side-two-filling run on the LP. In the decades since this album was released, the studio versions of these three pieces, along with other tracks being worked up for their third album, have appeared as The Lost Trident Sessions -- dating from May and June of 1973 -- thus giving fans a means of comparing this repertory to what the band had worked out (or not worked out) in the studio; and Between Nothingness and Eternity has come up a bit in estimation as a result, benefiting as it does from the spontaneity and energy of a live performance, though even that can only carry this work so far -- beyond the personality conflicts that broke up the band, they seem to have been approaching, though not quite reaching, a musical dead end as well." - Allmusic
    $5.00
  • Dial is the new project put together by Kristoffer Gildenlow upon his departure from Pain Of Salvation. His partners are Liselotte Hegt and Rommert van der Meer, formerly of Dutch prog metal band Cirrha Niva. The music has a modern feel with emphasis on mood and textures. I'm reminded a bit of Kate Bush. Some nice male/female harmonies. The band is rounded out by Elegy drummer Dirk Bruinenberg with contributions on vocals by Devon Graves (Dead Soul Tribe). Certainly a bit different and nothing at all like PoS.
    $3.00
  • Hot jazz set from the great French violinist cut for MPS in 1971. Ponty had already recorded Hot Rats with Zappa and was ready to move on to an electric solo career as well as working with the Mothers of Invention. So in essence this marked the end of his jazz career with MPS. Great lineup features Philip Catherine on guitar and the insanely great Joachim Kuhn on piano. Typical gorgeous reissue from Promising Music in a mini-lp sleeve and great mastering.
    $21.00