Z2 (3CD Digipak)

"Devin Townsend - fully 30 records into an astonishing career - has now just raised the stakes in the form of a new double album combining Ziltoid The Omniscient’s triumphant return and the follow-up to the critically acclaimed “Epicloud!” Feasting upon Z2 is akin to immersing oneself in the arcane creases of the DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT catalog, bludgeoning heaviness and angelic melodies living under the cathedral of Devin’s more contemplative solo vision. The effect is lush, full- range, cinematic, and expressive. Addressing the creative tension between the two discs, Devin explains “...it’s DTP...the ‘humans’ against Ziltoid, and it’s a battle of sorts...The DTP and Ziltoid side of my writing has evolved to where this statement was necessary and undoubtedly inevitable. The battle between the two seems like a great way to priced to the next chapter of my work. It’s a backdrop for something that hopefully engaging for people. I hope that the point that I’m trying to make with Ziltoid and the metaphor behind it, isn’t lost in just a sea of absurdity.” Guest musicians include Anneke Van Giersbergen (solo artist, ex-THE GATHERING) and Chris Jericho (WWE star, FOZZY) as Captain Spectacular! Also featuring the "Universal Choir", 2000 voices strong, the biggest choir on a metal record ever!"

Limited edition 3CD digipak with bonus disc and special artwork.

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  • Originally released in 2012 on vinyl (and apparently cassette), the second album from this Scottish based space quartet finally gets a CD release...but its a limited edition of 500 copies so you might want to be snappy.The Cosmic Dead wear their influences on their sleeves.  The music is heavily invested in the sounds of Ash Ra Tempel, Can, and even a touch of early Hawkwind.  Loooooong jams that take you further and further into deep space.  A non-stop assault of burbling synths, echoplexed guitar leads, and a rhythm section that is playing off in another galaxy.  Pure unadulterated psychedelic space rock.  These guys played the Roadburn Festival and I'm sure they must have gone down a storm.  If the numbers 7 - 1 - 4 mean anything to you then I think this should be filed away in your collection.  Highly recommended.
    $15.00
  • "Spirit was formed with the intention to combine jazz, rock, classical, and folk with a mystical orientation. Led by the family duo of Hendrix-inspired guitarist Randy California and his uncle, jazz drummer Ed Cassidy (whose shaved head--some 20 years ahead of its time--was the band's visual focus), Spirit had a few idiosyncratic hits such as "I Got A Line On You." The band didn't reach its prime until Twelve Dreams, after which they promptly broke up. A loosely constructed sci-fi concept album, it contains the band's biggest hit, the ecological "Nature's Way" (complete with booming kettle drums), the surreal rock of "Animal Zoo," and the orchestral psychedelia of "Life Has Just Begun." Bristling with ideas, energy, and California's meaty guitar, Twelve Dreams exemplifies the best of the late '60s experimentalism."
    $12.00
  • Magnificent spacerock journey is a conceptual work that was one half of a duology completed by "Time To Turn". Stunning Floyd-like soundscapes with Frank Bornemann's ever present guitar runs. Comes with a live version of "On The Verge Of Darkening Lights". Highest recommendation.Please note this disc incorporates EMI copy control technology which seems to allow you to do whatever it is you would normally do with a CD but you can't rip it. Bummer.
    $13.00
  • Fourth studio album from the prog "supergroup" of Mike Portnoy (ex-Dream Theater), Roine Stolt (The Flower Kings), Neal Morse (ex-Spock's Beard), and Pete Trewavas (Marillion).  Like the previous albums expect marathon length pure prog rock that reflects back onto the golden age.  The title track is 32 minutes long!This is the 2CD/DVD Deluxe edition.Track List:Main Disc:1    Into the Blue                                          25:112    Shine                                                       7:263    Black as the Sky                                       6:434    Beyond the Sun                                        4:29 5    Kaleidoscope                                          31:53TOTAL TIME: 75:43      Bonus Disc:1    And You and I                                         10:432    I Can't Get It Out of My Head                   4:433    Conquistador                                            4:104    Goodbye Yellow Brick Road                      3:165    Tin Soldier                                               3:216    Sylvia                                                      3:497    Indiscipline                                              4:438    Nights In White Satin                                6:12TOTAL TIME: 40:59Making of Kaleidoscope DVD – Full length DVD behind the scenes of the writing and recording of this amazing album. Running time 1 hour and 26 minutes. Edited by Randy George. NTSC Region Free
    $28.00
  • "David T. Chastain has gained a reputation over the last 25 years as a powerful, progressive guitarist whose music has been centered around his melodic and technically fluent fret board mastery. For Those Who Dare, the fifth CHASTAIN album and originally released in 1990, showed David forging into new territory with the finest group of musicians he had ever worked with creating not only the most accessible metal record of his career but also the most inventive.While David did remain the principle songwriter, he admitted that the band’s sound on For Those Who Dare wouldn’t have been the same without David Harbour (bass) and John Luke He’bert (drums) supplying their own individual trademark performances. Besides David’s virtuoso style the other major attribute to CHASTAIN’s instantly distinct sound is vocalist Leather Leone’s superior and ultimately commanding presence.Originally brought together by Shrapnel Records’ Mike Varney, Leather quickly established herself as one of the greatest female heavy metal vocalists of all time appearing on all four previous and critically acclaimed CHASTAIN albums - Mystery Of Illusion (1985), Ruler Of The Wasteland (1986), The 7th Of Never (1987) & Voice Of The Cult (1988). Ever since his recording debut in 1983 David Chastain has been wowing fans with his innovative and technically superb guitar playing. For Those Who Dare is a perfect example that David Chastain was not just a great player, but also a talented songwriter and band leader with an exceptional group of collaborators to help make his melodic visions a reality."
    $12.00
  • "Desolation Row finds things coming full-circle for guitarist/electronics pioneer, Richard Pinhas. In a career spanning more than 40 years, pathfinder Pinhas has remained continually innovative, pioneering groundbreaking developments in electronic rock and industrial music and influencing generations of musicians. In a major recent creative surge, he has released numerous recordings over the past several years in collaboration with noise and experimental musicians, breaking further sonic ground. Desolation Row finds Pinhas collaborating with those he has directly or indirectly inspired and influenced, with the results in a class by themselves.On the album, he is in the company of some of Europe’s cutting-edge performers in the frequently-overlapping spheres of free improvisation, jazz, progressive rock and noise — Oren Ambarchi, Lasse Marhaug, Etienne Jaumet, Noel Akchote, Eric Borelva, and his son, Duncan Nilsson — engaging in a series of six distinct works which stimulate and push all concerned through and beyond their comfort zones. This is a work that stands both with and apart from the respective oeuvres of its principals. The continually evolving Pinhas reaches ever newer artistic vistas – and draws attention to Europe’s sociological, political, and economic turmoil on Desolation Row.Desolation Row contains some of the elements we know and love from Pinhas—dense, subtly shifting banks of sonic bliss; sustained guitar tones, textures alternately dreamlike and nightmarish, and well-nigh elemental, pulsating rhythms. Far from being an "elder statesman," this shows that Richard Pinhas is still in the thick of things, continually reinventing his musical conceptions and recognizing no conventional constraints."
    $15.00
  • "I can't wait. I should have reviewed other albums before this but it's the first thing that I listen from this artist and I wasn't expecting anything like this. Symphonic orchestral arrangements on melodic bases and a concept behind. I'm not expert in William Blake's poetry but this album has made me curious.The introduction "William" is a symphonic piece of beauty with a guitar of the "not a misplaced note" kind, like Andy Latimer is used to do, some "mute" vocals and a very nice melody. A stunning surprise."Angel Of The Revelation" starts with electronics and piano, then vocals and a proper song starts. The high pitched voice of Sophya joined in a choir by whom? Maybe Sonja Kristina who features in the guests? The guests list is another thing to check. This is a progressive track as I think people usually intends "progressive": sung parts alternated with instrumentals, structured as a suite with different movements and recurring themes. And all in 4 minutes and half."Satan" has an obsessive rhythm and has the theathrical flavor of a rock opera. The electronics behind have a vintage sound but is remarkable the dialogue between guitar and piano before the last sung part and the coda. Another great song."Love Of Hecate" Is a slow waltz. It's folky and theathrical in the same time, with excellent vocals again. The signature changes in the chorus. It's still a 3/4 (almost) but the tempo is accelerated. Vocals like in Mozart's magic flute are replaced by a cymbal, then piano and vocals. Another very complex and "circular" song.Percussive piano and bass with water sounds to start "La Porta Dell'Inferno". This is a little mistake: it's taken from Dante's Comedy, but the door should lead to the "anti-inferno". The first lyrics are taken from Dante, then the man talking leaves the Dante's book to give a different view of the hell's entrance. "Here nothing grows because nothing dies". Another great song with the music perfectly fitting with the concept. The violins support the whole track, choirs, a stupendous coda... Great.After a track like the previous one staying on the same level is very difficult, so the style changes totally. "The Number" is a rock song. Of course the number is 666. It starts hard rock, but with no relations with Iron Maiden, and the rock screamed part is alternated to more quiet and symphonic interludes. The organ is excellent, neither Emerson nor Wakeman, the sound reminds me more to Vitalij Kuprij (Artension)."Just" is opened by percussion, piano and cello. The theme recalls "La Porta Dell'Inferno" but the vocals take a different direction. The song's intro, before the male singing, makes me think to the Russian Iamthemorning, mainly because of the instruments used. However, after 2 minutes the song changes drastically. The impression is still of a rock opera. Remove the metal element from Ayreon and add more symphonics to have an idea. The vocals here are more operatic. Not enough to think to Zeuhl, but enough to enhance the track. Great guitar solo in a Van Halen style which slows down and closes Floydian before the last sung reprise."Cerberus" is the three-headed infernal dog. Keyboard and strings introduce the song which reprises the chords of the main theme. It's on this song that I'm almost sure Sonja Kristina is singing. I don't know it for sure because I have received a download link from Blackwidow records and I haven't seen the notes on the CD. This is a very dark song on which the rock-opera factor is very relevant. I want to add the the most I listen to this album the most I'm surprised. It's surely one of the best albums I've listened to during all the 2013."While He's Sleeping" starts in a weird way respect to the symphonic mood of the previous tracks. It's still classically influenced but has a touch of Canterbury, especially in the melody. Not an easy track, but very enjoyable.Back to full orchestra and theatrical suggestions. "Au Matin Du Premier Jour" (At the morning of the first day) is sung in French by a man who sounds like the chansonniers of the end 50s / early 60s. French and operatic don't mean Magma, but this song has a Zeuhl flavor in the instrumental parts."Beatrice" brings us back to Dante's Comedy. To Paradise now. Her character would deserve some words but this would lead us off topic. Of course there's less darkness now. Piano and ethereal voice for a very melodic song. A Sophya's solo performance and let me add that the sequence of chords deserves a mention. There's plenty of good passages. excellent also from the composition point of view.We are now at the title track. Full orchestra and voice plus some electronics behind. It starts like a symphony and turns into rock. I don't know who's the male singer but his voice is incredible. The mood is still of a rock opera I'm finishing the words...The album is closed by a cover. "Jerusalem" has been played and recorded by the likes of Vangelis, Emerson Lake and Palmer, Par Lindh Project for what I remember. Well, I must say that it's probably the best version that I've heard up to now. It's a new interpretation when the one from Par Lindh was an ELP clone.A masterpiece, amazing because unexpected. How can an artist that I've never heard before have done a thing like this? Symphonic proggers and RPI fans will surely agree with me, but there's so many stuff in this album. It will stay in my portable reader for a very long time, I think." - ProgArchives
    $16.00
  • Raise The Curtain is the latest effort from the former Savatage mastermind.  Its quite different from the Jon Oliva's Pain project and in a surprising way.  The music has a strong 70s vibe blending elements of progressive rock, AOR, and metal.  Oliva plays all the instruments but he collaborated on the songwriting with Dan Fasciano.  From the opening roaring organ sounds you know you are in for something a bit different.  You can tell this is Jon Oliva - there are parts that will remind you a bit of Savatage but you will also think in terms of Kansas, ELP, Alice Cooper.  A mash up of styles for sure but quite well done.  A friend who heard an advance copy summed it up perfectly: "A fun album".  This is the first pressing that has one bonus track.  Grab it while we got 'em.
    $15.00
  • "SILENT VOICES is a relatively unknown band hailing from Finland, nevertheless they had already published many recommended albums such as their debut in 2002 “Chapters Of Tragedy” or 2006’s “Building Up The Apathy” or the great “Infernal” (2004), the line-up team is also composed by ex-members of REQUIEM and also share some musicians with SONATA ARCTICA like Henrik Klingenberg as keyboardist and bass player Pasi Kauppinen (WINTERBORN / KLINGENBERG SYNDROME). It’s been a while since the last SILENT VOICES album was out in the streets, it had occurred a lot of things in their lives, lots of turmoils, hassles -you name it-, the band was on deep winter sleep and they lost their vocalist, the great but rather inconstant Michael Henneken (SENTIMENT / ADAMANTRA) was gone for good.While they were in quest of searching for a new perfect singer they opted for the trick that consist to have different famous vocalists at the same time in order to increase their creativity and the band’s polyvalence, it’s also a good marketing move but the risk is to weakened the impact, to have a dilution of the personality of the music with each guest singer's specificity but finally the idea works pretty well, I believe.Now the new permanent singer for SILENT VOICES is known as Teemu Koskela from WINTERBORN’s fame (their 2008’s release “Farewell To Saints” is warmly recommended). But the album contains, beside the impressive vocals of Mr. Koskela in the very first song (which is a killer), nothing more than four guest vocalists such as:Mats Leven (ex-TREAT / ex-SWEDISH EROTICA / ex-ABSTRACT ALGEBRA / ex-RISING FORCE / ex-SOUTHPAW / ex-THERION / ex-ADAGIO / ex-AT VANCE / ex-FATAL FORCE / ex-SABBTAIL / DOGFACE), Michael Vescera (ex-LOUDNESS / OBSESSION / ex-RISING FORCE / ex-FATAL FORCE / ex-DR SIN / ex-REIGN OF TERROR / ex-KILLING MACHINE / WARRION / ANIMETAL USA / SAFE HEAVEN / MVP), Tony Kakko (SONATA ARCTICA / ex-NOTHERN KINGS) and Mike DiMeo (PHENOMENA / THE LIZARDS / ex-RIOT / ex-ILLIUM / ex-MASTERPLAN).Swedish citizen Mats Leven is absolutely stunning within the songs “No Turning Back” & with “Burning Shine”, his vivid interpretations, his deep implication and his voice leaves no hope for another contender, his signature vocalizing are clearly unbeatable, he is the king. Those songs are very well composed , maybe a little more direct than before but with still some intriguing arrangements and great orchestrations plus as always some acrobatic playing.Mike Vescera from USA delivers also a very solid performance, within the third track that is quite reminiscent of the SILENT VOICES old style, with an amazing display of virtuosity in the solo section, that’s funny that they opted for the titled “Reign Of Terror” with Vescera singing on it. Tony Kakko is the weakest of all the hired vocalist, the track is quite good but don’t fit with the thin voice of the SONATA ARCTICA’s mastermind, I believe that Teemu Koskela could do a better job with that particular one.“Black Water” is an instrumental number that allows to each member to shine a little more, a fine demonstration of agility. New York City very own Mike DiMeo is doing a fine rendition of this song called “Through My Prison Walls” but I still think that Teemu is able to sing even better, the long epic cut itself  is a good mix of past and fresh Prog Metal , with some amazing musical parts and many twists and turns.Only little disappointment is the length of the disc itself, after seven years in the making I had wished for one more song with Teemu, a remake of an old song could have been a good ide. Maybe this is their best album, I don’t know only time will tell, but it surely can compete with their great back-catalogue, easily. " - Metal Temple
    $14.00
  • It s nice to hear a band like Siena Root playing it for real in this overly-processed world that we live in. Power to them, and I wish them all the success in the world! - Mick Box (Uriah Heep)"Siena Root is an experienced live act and an experimental project with its roots in analogue old school rock music. The group was founded in Stockholm in the late 90s. The sound is classic but yet original, based on heavy organ, howling guitars, bass riffing and big drums. It is also often enriched with bluesy soulful vocals, various guest musicians and psychedelic vibes.Siena Root is well known for its unique spectra of appearances, its many great guest artists, its broad musical range and its different interpretations of rock music. Yet, with a foundation in a traditional quintet, and a sound rooted in late 60s analogue gear. Don't expect to experience the same Siena Root show twice.In the sense that blues is blue, hard rock is black, and reggae is pan African coloured, this music has the colour of siena. It is a warm colour, originally from the muddy roots of the earth. Because this sound has roots that go deep, it was also natural to let root be a part of the bands name.Four full length studio albums, one live album, one DVD and two 7 singles have been released so far, each one marking the development and refinement of the bands diverse style. Through touring the music has developed in such a way, that jamming and improvising has become an essential element, always keeping you on the edge of your seat. A Siena Root concert is dramatic and exciting, visually, as well as emotionally. It's a dynamic root rock experience.""The musical world is rich and powerful and that is also a correct description of Siena Root's music. This is a Swedish hard rock band which aren't very progressive but still play in a progressive spirit or a psychedelic mood, without being psychedelic thankfully. "Pioneers" which is totally new is their fifth record and all their records has got very high (but few) ratings on this site. Especially their first "A new day dawning" from 2003 and their third "Far from the sun" from 2008. 2014 year's record follows a five year spectrum of now records. Their record has a lovely cover with a yellow landscape and the sillouettes of the five band-members heads in the background sky. Left from former line up is Love Forsberg, the band's drummer and Sam Riffer, the band's bassist. Otherwise the lead guitarist and organist KG West is gone as well as the lead vocalist Sartez Faraj. They are replaced by the keyboardist Erik Errka Petersson(who has played with my choir actually), the new vocalist Jonas Åhlén and the guitarist Matte Gustafsson."Pioneers" is a record of very high standard music which will please folk who like the hard rock of the late sixties and early seventies. The music is straight and melodic, filled with heavy organ sound and a caressing hard rock vocal. The musicians themselves has beautiful beards and it's obvious they love what they are doing. The only shame is that they have chosen to sing in English, that makes their music less interesting. I compare with the Norwegian band Höst which did a better choice. But still this music is lovely and very pleasurable. I think almost every track is similarily good but "In my kitchen" is absolutely the best(9/10), calmer and more atmospheric than the others. "Between the lines" and "Root rock pioneers" are two other songs I recommend(8/10). The record is extremely even so you won't find any bad or uninteresting tracks. This is specially a band and a record for fans of classical hard rock such as the late sixties' Deep Purple. This record is definitely at least a four star record. Recommended!" - ProgArchives
    $13.00
  • "Wow, what lovely album!When we talk about North American Metal, always comes to our minds the idea of a good level of musical technique and the use of great melodies. It’s a characteristic of their scene, and the Power/Heavy Metal trio NINTH CIRCLE is to be as melodic and catching, knowing how to be heavy and melodic on the same proportions. And their new album, “Legions of the Brave”, is an excellent sample of what your Ol’ Big Daddy here is saying.Their music is catching, elegant, heavy, full of life and energy, with good level of technique. And their music really is charming, with excellent clean vocals, great guitar riffs and solos, a rhythmic kitchen showing a good work in terms of technique and weight, and the keyboards work is lovely. And their music is not simply a mix of Heavy Metal with Power Metal aspects, but has high doses of AOR/Hard Rock touches. And it’s excellent.The sound production really is on a high level, making the band sound clear and the arrangements appear, but without losing the notion that we’re dealing with a Metal band.So, you will got in love with their work listening great and perfect songs like “After the Rain”, “Living on the Sun” (what great chorus), “The Quickening” (the great chorus and keyboards are giving a delicious taste to the music), the bold and heavier “Legions of the Brave”, and “Grinding the Bastards Down”. But don’t get the wrong idea: the album is wonderful from beginning to the end.Listen, got on the circle, and buy it. Illegal downloads are for sissies, wimps, posers and other sick mind idiots." - Metal Temple
    $6.00
  • Third album from this very fine Irish neo-progressive band.  Dead Heroes Club have that traditional sound down.  Frontman Liam Campbell's voice has an uncanny resemblance to Fish and Peter Gabriel (which one depends on the tune).  This one is ripped right out of the Clutching At Straws playbook but the band tends to stretch out a bit more.  I also noticed that the guitar is cranked up a bit more than in the past.  Good stuff.
    $15.00
  • "YES - the combined age of the five guys on stage at the Hippodrome was more than 300 years - and some unkind souls would say that feels almost as long as some of their more indulgent numbers.But everybody knew why they were here. We all knew well in advance what Yes were going to play even down to the encore, and the scene was set with the entrance music of Stravinsky’s Firebird theme - just like Yes used 40 years ago. But although there were no surprises in what they played, there were plenty in how they played.Aggression isn’t probably a word that springs to mind when it comes to Yes, but there’s plenty present - along with the shifting rhythms, hardcore virtuoso musicianship, sheer power and soaring over it all the high clear harmonies and sweeping melodies that make Yes YesOriginal singer Jon Anderson is not currently with the band - but his replacement, 43-year-old American Jon Davison, is a more than adequate stand-in, sounding uncannily like Anderson at times but adding his own touches to the songs and a friendly vitality to the band onstage. The other long-standing Yesman not present is grumpy old Rick Wakeman. This time on an array of keyboards we have Geoff Downes, who has been playing with Yes on and off for 30-plus years but whom many may know best and possibly not too fondly for Buggles and Video Killed the Radio Star.The rest of the band - guitarist Steve Howe, bassist Chris Squire and drummer Alan White - are as Yes was 40 years ago - and although age may have had its impact on their hairlines or girth or ability to bop around the stage, it has totally failed to diminish their musical skills.Howe can still play lightning fast and pure, delivering faithfully favourite old solos but also bringing new embellishments and invention. And Squire showed just how important a part his melodic driving basslines have always been to the distinctive Yes sound. And when the band are playing as one they can still deliver moments that can take your breath away.It’s something of a rarity to have a rock concert at the Hippodrome - perhaps the fact the concert was being filmed meant they wanted a more theatrical setting. It seemed quite apt that there were occasional elements of pantomime - “Hello Bristol!” “Hello Steve!” - and the rather startling appearance of Chris Squire’s triple-necked bass. There was also a large screen showing films largely with New Age/old hippy themes - lots of fractals and turtles - and during Turn Of The Century what looked disturbingly like a cross between Game Of Thrones and a cereal advert. And the explosion of confetti towards the end during Perpetual Change could have seemed tacky - but it worked beautifully with the soaring optimism of the music and had the audience grinning like the children they were long ago.Highlights were too numerous to mention, but there were a few moist eyes around at the opening of And You And I; Yours Is No Disgrace sounded as good as it ever has; and the transition from the "give peace a chance” section of Your Move to the rocking abandon of All Good People might well have had a younger audience dancing in the aisles. As it was by the time the encore of Roundabout came around everybody was on their feet.It’s more than 40 years since Yes were first a huge name - able to release a triple-disc live album and have a top 10 hit with it. They and their audience may have aged a lot - but Yes still sound as good as ever when they hit those dizzyingly exuberant moments of wonder. And the audience wasn’t entirely grey-haired and wallowing in nostalgia - my 15-year-old daughter wasn’t the only youngster up and whooping at the end." - The Bristol Post
    $20.00
  • Amorphis really have it dialed in. They have been consistently releasing great albums for years. Their last album of all new material, Skyforger, was masterpiece material. The Beginning Of Times carries on from there. The band's musical themes are deeply steeped in Finnish folklore. As has been the case for some years now, vocals are primarily clean but with some coarse growls as augmentation. The music has a melancholy feel but would not be categorized as doom. Lots of progressive elements, in fact the guitar and keys work have a real 70s feel with lots of tasty soloing versus crunchy riffing. Simply put this is brilliant. Highly recommended.
    $13.00