The Masquerade Overture (2LP Vinyl)

SKU: MDF997LP
Label:
Madfish Records
Category:
Progressive Rock
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17 years after it’s initial release on CD, The Masquerade Overture album is now available as a double album in 180gm heavy weight vinyl.

Track listing -

Side 1:
1. The Masquerade Overture
2. As Good As Gold
3. Paintbox
Side 2:
1. The Pursuit Of Excellence
2. Guardian Of My Soul
Side 3:
1. The Shadow
2. Masters Of Illusion
Side 4  [Bonus Tracks]
1. Bird Of Paradise
2. Midnight Running
3. A Million Miles Away

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  • "In some ways, Abandoned Dancehall Dreams was inevitable. Just as Steven Wilson, his partner in No-Man, ultimately took what is, at the very least, a hiatus from, in addition to No-Man and other projects, his primary gig with Porcupine Tree—pursuing a solo career that's led to increasing success, most recently with the studio recording The Raven That Refused to Sing (And Other Stories) and the live/studio EP Drive Home (both Kscope, 2013)—it appears that the time for singer Tim Bowness to step out on his own has also arrived. 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There are, of course, many participants on the album's eight songs, inspired by dancehalls of the 1920s through the '60s in many places around the world—most now sitting empty, razed, or converted—but the overall concept belongs to Bowness, and perhaps the biggest surprise is that, while his breathy, romanticized vocal delivery remains as definitive as ever, the music of Abandoned Dancehall Dreams is on a much grander scale than anything suggested by his past work. From King Crimson drummer Pat Mastelotto's thundering propulsion of the opening "The Warm-Up Man Forever"—a song which could be read as autobiographical, were it not for Bowness' assertions to the contrary, possessing ..."elements of people I've come across on the fringes of the music, literary and art worlds over the last few decades and was an attempt to understand certain ways of thinking that are more than a little alien to me"—it's clear that there's the Tim Bowness people have come to know, and then there's the more ambitious and expansive Tim Bowness of Abandoned Dancehall Dreams.Musically, the opening song's tribal drums reference the '80s work of artists like Peter Gabriel, while at the same time, Henry Fool guitarist Michael Bearpark adds more suitably contemporary guitar work and Andrew Keeling—the man who collaborated with King Crimson co-founder Robert Fripp and engineer/producer David Singleton on the innovative The Wine of Silence (DGM Live, 2012)—contributes some truly heady string arrangements (here, and elsewhere throughout the album ) that are created, single-handedly by renowned concert violinist Charlotte Dowding, one overdub at a time."Smiler at 50" is only eclipsed by the even more epically dynamic "I Fought Against the South" as Abandoned Dancehall Music's longest track, though they're both only half a minute apart, and both exceed the eight-minute mark. 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Still, this isn't just a simple ballad; instead, processed and wordless vocals, synth lines, orchestral swells and other atmospherics, as well as volume pedal and delay-driven guitar, turn its 90-second ending into an evocative instrumental passage of glorious, enveloping warmth and grace.But more than simply being his best recording to date, Abandoned Dancehall Dreams is also Bowness' most eclectic. Electronics, synths and atmospherics may define much of an album that sits somewhere between the dreamy romanticism of No-Man and the more energetic progressive leanings of Henry Fool, but Bowness isn't afraid to unplug and use acoustic guitars, courtesy of Keeling—who turns out to be an even greater talent than already known, contributing guitars, bass, organ and percussion to the brighter "Waterfoot." Keeling also plays a major role on "I Fought Against the South," his flute work reminiscent of Court of the Crimson King-era Crimson, acting as a mid-song segue to a dramatic coda that builds—with Bearparks' power chords blazing over Henry Fool drummer Andrew Booker and one-time No-Man bassist Pete Morgan's august pulse—to a climactic peak before dissolving to a gentler conclusion, Keeling's multilayered flutes once again coming to the fore."Smiler at 52" acts as a linking premise, picking up on the character of "Smiler at 50" who, just two years later, is alone, as Bowness sings: "There were days when she was missed / There were days not like this," his delivery as poignant as ever on a tune also defined by the electronic texture of programmed drum beats, near-celestial wordless vocals and subdued but soaring strings, all anchored by Porcupine Tree's Colin Edwin, revealing more about his own talents by playing double bass, rather than the electric bass he uses on "Smiler at 50" and "Dancing for You," the latter one of two tunes where Steven Wilson (who mixed the album) contributes musically, in this case drum programming that's juxtaposed with Mastelotto's acoustic kit. 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CD2 (Abandoned Dancehall Outtakes and Mixes): Songs of Distant Summers (extended band version); The Warm-Up Man Forever (band version); The Sweetest Bitter Pill; Abandoned Dancehall Dream; There Were Days (Smiler at 52, Grasscut mix); Dancing for Youth (Dancing for You, UXB mix); Sounds of Distant Summers (Sounds of Distant Summers, Richard Barbieri mix).Personnel: Tim Bowness: vocals; mellotron (CD1#1), piano (CD1#1), keyboards (CD1#6), drum programming (CD1#6), guitar (CD1#7, CD2#5), instruments (CD2#4); Michael Bearpark: guitar solo (CD1#1, CD1#5, CD2#6), guitars (CD1#2, CD1#3, CD1# 7, CD1#8, CD2#1-3, CD2#5, CD2#7), guitar atmospherics (CD1#5, CD2#6); Charlotte Dowding: violin ensemble (CD1#1, CD1#4, CD1#6, CD2#3); Andrew Keeling: string arrangement (CD1#1, CD1#6, CD1#7, CD2#3), acoustic guitars (CD1#4), bass (CD1#4), organ (CD1#4), percussion (CD1#4), flutes (CD1#7); Pat Mastelotto: drums (CD1#1, CD1#2, CD1#5, CD2#6); Pete Morgan: bass (CD1#1); Stephen Bennett: Nord Electro 3 CP70 (CD1#2, CD1#3, CD1#5, CD1#7, CD2#5-7), Novatron M400 (CD1#2-5, CD1#7, CD1#8, CD2#3, CD2#5-7), Godwin String Concert (CD1#2, CD1#5, CD1#7, CD2#5-6), Moog Minimoog OS (CD1#2, CD1#4, CD1#5, CD1#7, CD1#8, CD2#3, CD2#5-6), Oberheim OB8 (CD1#2, CD1#5, CD1#7, CD2#5-6), the Spitfire orchestra (CD1#2), Fender Rhodes MK1 (CD1#2, CD1#4, CD1#8, CD2#3), upright piano (CD1#2), Korg MS20 mini (CD1#4), drum machine programming (CD1#5), Nord Electro 3 organ (CD1#7, CD2#5), keyboards (CD2#1-2); Colin Edwin: bass (CD1#2, CD1#5, CD2#6), double bass (CD1#6); Anna Phoebe: violin (CD1#2, CD1#7, CD2#5); Steve Bingham: violin (CD1#3, CD2#1-2, CD2#7); Stuart Laws: piano (CD1#3, CD2#7), synth pads (CD1#3, CD2#7), Taurus bass (CD1#3, CD2#7), atmospherics (CD1#3, CD2#7), percussion (CD1#3, CD2#1-2, CD2#7), keyboards (CD2#1-2), effects (CD2#3); Eliza Legzedina and Matt Ankers: The Spontaneous UEA Vocal Ensemble (CD1#5, CD2#6); Steven Wilson: drum machine addition (CD1#5, CD2#6), guitar (CD1#8); Andrew Booker: drums (CD1#7, CD1#8, CD2#1-3, CD2#5); Pete Morgan: bass (CD1#7, CD1#8, CD2#3, CD2#5); Andrew Phillips (Grasscut): additional instrumentation (CD2#5), programming (CD2#5); Pete Morgan (UXB): additional instrumentation (CD2#6), programming (CD2#6); Richard Barbieri: keyboards (CD2#7), synthesizers (CD2#7), percussion programming (CD2#7).
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  • "After mining the Beatles gold mine for all those catchy hooks, by the time that Balance of Power was released, Jeff Lynne and company had pretty much found that once-rich vein going dry. This album did contain yet another Top 40 hit with "Calling America," but by the mid-'80s, ELO were finding their audience and their inspiration on the wane. Not truly memorable, but passable. [In 2007 Epic/Legacy reissued Balance of Power with seven bonus cuts, including alternate takes of "Heaven Only Knows," "Secret Lives" and "Sorrow About to Fall," U.K. b-sides "Caught in a Trap" and "Destination Unknown" and the previously unreleased "In for the Kill" and "Opening." - AllmusicExpanded edition with 5 bonus tracks.
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  • 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   
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  • In early 2014, Premiata Forneria Marconi (PFM) performed a series of concerts in Japan - doing complete run throughs of their classic albums.  This live recording captures their performance of L'Isola Di Niente (which some of you may know in its bastardized form as The World Became The World).  To the best of my knowledge some of these tunes have never been performed live before.  So who's left in PFM after all these years?  Franz Di Ciocco is still the drummer and he also handles vocals.  Patrick Djivas is a monster bassist.  Franco Mussida handles guitars.  The trio are augmented by Lucio Fabbri on violin (he has ducked in and out of the band over the years), Alessandro Scaglione on keyboards, and a second drummer in Roberto Gualdi.  Vinyl edition comes with the CD as a bonus. 
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  • Deluxe digipak set from this amazing trio of Guthrie Govan, Marco Minnemann, and Bryan Beller.  It was filmed at Alvas Showroom in San Pedro, CA in June 2012.  The material is drawn from the Aristocrats studio album as well as the back catalog of the individual members.  Pro-shot DVD features a 5.1 surround mix courtesy of Steven Wilson.  The 2CDs feature the soundtrack to the set.  Oh yeah - the DVD is packed with live bonus material. 
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  • A new release from Causa Sui is like money in the bank.  The new Live At Freak Valley is no exception.  The live milieu is where the band really shines.  If you are unfamilar with the band you should know that the band's origins date back to the stoner scene but they evolved into something different - something more psychedelic - more organic.  The quartet features Jakob Skott (drums), Jonas Munk (guitar), Jess Kahr (bass), and Rasmus Rasmussen (keyboards).  The band goes off on looooong instrumental jams.  Munk's guitarwork has a beautiful fluidity that plays off of Rasmussen's keyboards which tend to surge to the forefront like waves on the ocean - or sit back and become a nice supporting backdrop for Munk's lead work.  I love when Munk burst out with a chunk of heavy riffage that recalls their stoner days.  Reminds me of vintage Zeppelin!  Highly recommended.
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  • Expanded edition with 3 bonus tracks."Originally conceived of as a double album, and wisely whittled down to one on release, Secret Messages was routine, formulaic Electric Light Orchestra. Lynne's hooks and dense production were still in force, but it sounded more mechanized and heartless than usual, due in part to the surfeit of synthesizers on some tracks. It did include the Top 20 hit "Rock & Roll Is King." [The 2001 CD reissue on Epic/Legacy included three bonus tracks: "After All," the B-side of "Rock & Roll Is King"; "No Way Out," planned for the double-album version of Secret Messages and eventually released on the 1990 Afterglow album; and a previously unreleased version of the Roy Orbison-style "Endless Lies," which was re-recorded for the Balance of Power album." - Allmusic
    $5.00
  • "Forming in 2008, the floodgates appear to be wide open creatively for releasing full length product for this UK progressive metal act. Two albums within two years, as well as a prime support slot for the Devin Townsend Project across 12 countries in Europe during 2011 leads us to the third record Enigma. Filling out as a quintet with new keyboardist Shaz, the nine songs on this effort illustrate the ability to siphon the old, complex template with a modern, semi-staccato meets djent guitar style in shorter, compact arrangements.Aeon Zen isn’t afraid to add a light, jazzy horn break during the tranquil section of the somber “Seven Hills,” which contrasts the conventional Dream Theater-like musical montage that opens the record instrumentally entitled “Enter the Enigma.” Drummer Steve Burton is adept at death metal blasts just as he is twisting tempos at will- check out the Opeth-esque “Divinity” for his double bass maneuvers, lightning fast fills and impeccable sense of timing.Alongside the professional skills of vocalist Andi Kravljaca (Silent Call), three other vocalists appear to add their own texture to the band’s cause. Atle Pettersen (Above Symmetry), Jonny Tatum (Eumeria) and Nate Loosemore (Lost in Thought) give Enigma a deeper emotional platform, as the clean and extreme deliveries match the mood of each arrangement.It’s a younger generation who seem willing and able to push parameters and use technology to deliver a wider scope of feelings, emotions, and contrasts. Much like the peanut butter and chocolate argument of whether each is better separate or together, Aeon Zen has no qualms about loving Symphony X, Threshold, and Megadeth as much as Periphery or Between The Buried And Me- and making it work within their output.Melodic, modern progressive metal that should grab a wide scope in audience enthusiasm - Enigma could be a sleeper hit if these gentlemen land the right touring situations. " - Blistering.com
    $8.00