Brief Nocturnes And Dreamless Sleep (2CD)

Brief Nocturnes is the band's 11th album.  It marks their return to Inside Out and quite frankly its the best album they have released in a very long time.  Chalk it up to Ted Leonard handling vocals or Neal Morse contributing writing to a couple of tunes?  Not sure.  I am definitely hearing more vitality and overt progginess in the compositions.  Ryo is going off his nut here - keys are whizzing all around - organ/'tron/the whole schmear - and Alan's guitar runs are matching him step for step.  Maybe I haven't been paying attention as closely as I should have for the past few years.  I do know that I'm enjoying the hell out of this.  Highly recommended.

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  • This young Swedish band's trademark is their glorious harmonies (everyone in the band sings). The more I listen to their third album, the more I pick up vocal references to other bands like The Hollies and 10cc. Its this sweet, mellifluous quality that really sets them apart. The band's compositions have a strong positive vibe. Nothing dark or too heavy. No overt hyper-complexity but still makes plenty of the right prog moves. File under "neo-prog".
    $14.00
  • We've had a hell of a time getting our hands on this album but its finally here and more than worthy of your attention.  In fact this is an album that is going to ride high on many 2014 top 10 album lists.This is the first full length release from this six piece band based out of Bergen, Norway.  The core sound of the band is rooted in classic progressive rock.  Think in terms of the aggressive side of Van Der Graaf Generator and King Crimson.  But there is more at play here.  A strong jazz element is at play as well.  I'm reminded of Jaga Jazzist and perhaps a bit of Frank Zappa and Mr. Bungle.  There is no doubt we are going to hear quite a bit from this band in the future.  BUY OR DIE!"An impressive album of refreshingly unique music that crosses many sub genres, including space-psychedelia, symphonic, heavy prog, avant-jazz and experimental/post metal. Wonderful vocals, very tight interplay among all band members with no one member or instrument really standing above any other--though the presence and performance of the saxophone is highly notable. This is complex music played so tightly. And the astonishing 14- minute epic, "God Left Us for A Black Dressed Woman," must be heard to be believed.1. "Oh My Gravity" (9:49) starts as a jazzy stop-and-start piece that picks up in intensity in the second minute before shifting to a melodic ballad in the vein of the heavier side of FROGG CAFÉ. The male vocalist sounds to me like something between RADIOHEAD's THOM YORKE and TODD RUNDGREN. Around the six minute mark the spiraling, swooning music sounds a lot like some of the louder stuff from MOTORPSYCHO's The Death Defying Unicorn. This feel continues into the seventh minute when organ and horns take turns embellishing the staccato music. The bare-bones, bluesy final 45 seconds is bizarre but so cool! A powerful and surprising opener to this unusual album. Very high marks for compositional prowess and instrumental performance. (9/10)2. "Wind Shears" (6:32) opens in a very psychedelia/spacey 1960s way. Then at the one minute mark it settles into a jazz groove with first sax and then jazzy guitar and Hammond organ filling the lanes over the rhythm section. Clavinet is added for a GentleGiant-like bridge before a polyrhythmic KING CRIMSON "Discipline"-like weave appears to support a brief ghost-like vocal. At 3:20 the sound gets much heavier over the same arpeggiated weave, nearly drowning out the still-soloing sax and organ. This is just like TOBY DRIVER (Kayo Dot/Maudlin of the Well)! At 4:05 things get quiet and sparse again, with the music vacillating from soft and delicate to heavy and abrasive. A very melodic kind of psychedelic big band section plays out for the final minute. Again, bizarre but so cool! (9/10)3. "Eschaton Hero" (8:29) opens with some guitar, keys & sax riffs repeated over latin percussion. At 1:00 everything settles down into another quiet section with a delicate vocal in Stian Økland's upper register. Beautiful chorus/bridge at 1:47 gives way to an unpretentious bass solo before settling back into the delicate vocal music. Same awesome bridge at 2:49 leads into a heavy section into jazzy chaos--all performed over the most simple, calm drum play. At 4:52 it gets even heavier as it plods along for a minute in support of a fuzz guitar solo. Finally the drums start to play--to match the frenzy of the rest of the band--then everything stops so the band can yell "Yay!" Then a variation on the previous frenzy picks back up until 7:05 when everything settles back down into the soft groove of the initial vocal section for a dirty sax solo before letting Stian finish the song out in his high voice. Well conceived and performed, just not my favorite. (7/10)4. "Extraction" (6:34) begins with another odd intro of two or three parts before settling into the vocal support section--which begins heavily before falling into another RADIOHEAD-like bluesy section. At 2:20 a neat Hammond section leads back into the heavy full band section that opened the vocals, then, again, drops off for the beautiful support of a multi-voice- supported section. At 3:45 a very smooth, stripped down electric guitar solos, until there is a full return to explosiveness at 4:20. A bouncy "O Yo Como Va"-like Hammond section at 4:40 gives way to a kind of Latin weave before falling back into the heavier rock weave from the first vocal section to end. (8/10)5. "God Left Us for A Black Dressed Woman" (14:12) opens with another KC "Discipline"-like weave that morphs and flows, polymorphs and grooves for two and a half minutes before decaying into a simplified form for a bluesy ROBERT PLANT-like vocal section. This song's amazing vocal performance could also be compared to some of the finest MATTHEW PARMENTER/DISCIPLINE works. Some incredibly powerful sections in this song--especially the multi-voice vocals in the eleventh minute and the following heavy full-band part. A very DISCIPLINE-like soft section then ensues with a slow build to an awesome crescendo and frizzed finish. The song evolves, shifts, twists and turns and surprises throughout. Again there are several parts that remind me of MOTORPSYCHO's Unicorn. Without question this is one of the best prog "epics" of the year! (10/10)Aside from the above references to Motorpsycho, King Crimson, Radiohead, Toby Driver, Matthew Parmenter/Discipline, the overall impression this album leaves me with is similar to that of DIAGONAL's eponymously titled debut album from 2008. SEVEN IMPALE's City of the Sun is a wonderful collection of masterfully composed, executed and recorded songs.A 4.5 star album that I can't see giving anything less than five in that it is a treasure for the ages!" - Prog Archives
    $14.00
  • Disc 1, “Machine de plaisir”: The original tape of had the working title "Meditation 2" and this long track was also recorded in 1993 for the "Guttemplers”, same as “The Music Box” in LVE 12. The feeling for time is so basic for Klaus' work. His beat is as alive as his breathing. His rhythm is both, continually attentive and exceptionally well integrated, as you can hear in large parts of this track. There is a feeling of unhurriedness in his work and yet there is intensity underneath and through it all.Disc 2: “Arthur Stanley Jefferson” was recorded in February 1993 in KS' studio. Originally, it was the third free tape for the "Guttemplers”. “Himmel und Erde”, recorded by Klaus in January 1993, was first released on a Russian limited edition CD sampler in the same year, and seven years later I put it among the “Lone Tracks”, the last of the fifty CDs of The Ultimate Edition. Also from1993, “Vas Insigne Electionis” was especially done for a planned sampler, but not used then. One year later it was given for free to the Dutch KLEM organisation, who did a limited edition CD sampler for their members. Six years later I also added it to the “Lone Tracks” of The Ultimate Edition. The very short track “Tag des offenen Denkmals” (Heritage Open Days) was done as tv trailer for a tv documentary on account of the European Heritage Days. Klaus recorded it on the 21st of July 1993. This small piece was first included in our Jubilee Edition set in 1997.Disc 3: ”Borrowed Time” was played and recorded by Klaus in 1993 and completed and mixed in April 1994 at his studio. The reason for doing this long music was because of the work on the soundtrack for the American-Hungarian movie "Living on Borrowed Time”. Just a few minutes of the music were actually used in the film (as well as some special - shorter - cuts, released as “Angry Young Moog” in Jubilee Edition). Normally, Klaus is not a man for short tracks, so for “Borrowed Time” he started to play, and as so often, he got lost, forgetting completely about the movie and its need for short pieces. Luckily he had not just played but also recorded the whole thing, and then he mixed and stored it... and three years after I could use it in Jubilee Edition.
    $21.00
  • AlieNatura is the second album from this superb band playing in the classic "rock progressivo italiano" style.  The band is led by keyboardist Elisa Montaldo, who is as impressive on the ears as she is on the eyes (pardon the sexist comment).  One of the strong points of the band's debut was the inclusion in the lineup of former Museo Rosenbach vocalist Lupi Galifi.  With MR reforming he's left Il Tempio Delle Clessidre.  The obvious concern is who could fill his shoes?  Apparently the unknown Francesco Ciapica.  Truth is he does a fine job.  The guy can sing.  He has that expressive style that fits this music so perfectly.  Beautiful symphonic keyboards, liquid guitar runs, phat Moog solos - this band has the sound down pat.  The Italian scene seems to be burgeoning with new RPI bands and I would classify Il Tempio Delle Clessidre right up there with La Maschera Di Cera.  That's saying something.  BUY OR DIE!
    $16.00
  • "With a mighty thunder and shout one of the most anticipated albums of 2011 is upon us, that would be Theocracy’s latest album entitled As the World Bleeds. Taking the seeds that were spread across the bands two previous albums As the World Bleeds is that previous work come to fruition.The song writing is world class through out with fabulous arrangements that bring subtlety to the forefront. Opening with an 11 minute track (I Am) isn’t always advised but Theocracy pulls it off building to a crashing crescendo. Epic choruses which have become their trademark are arranged with precision and executed flawlessly.What I love about Theocracy is that their arrangements are memorable and are a stark contrast to the extreme vocals heard in so many of today’s metal acts. Some reviewers have compared them to Dream Theater, but I find a comparison with Stratovarius is must more compelling.Even though the musical territory on As the World Bleeds is similar to their previous release Mirror of Souls, the band just feels must more comfortable. Safe in their own skin as it were, one of the elements this time that was not apparent in the prior releases is the quality of the guitar solos. Many of the tracks benefit from a scorching solo that wouldn’t have appeared before. Let it made clear that the solos don’t occur at the expense of the songs, there isn’t a sense of ridiculous noodling.Power house tracks like Nailed, The Master Story Teller and Altar to an Unknown God are all top drawer compositions which are indicative of the release as a whole. Lyrics, riffs, melodies, performances are world class and deserve the accolades they receive.The production elements are of the highest caliber as the sound of the instruments and vocals are clearly defined. Listening to the lush composition The Gift of Music is an epic arrangement that sounds fabulous. The package of songwriting, arrangements and performance is in the upper eschelon.Having said all this I simply don’t want to over hype this album. This is a top 10 album for this year, but having read some of the negative thoughts all I’m gonna say is if you don’t care European flavored Power Metal with touches of progressive whimsy, you might want to pass on this and grab Terraphobia’s latest (a great album in it’s own right!).However if you want soaring melodies with clean vocals, great guitar work, epic choruses and powerful heavy metal make sure you grab As the World Bleeds. A big thumbs up!!" - White Throne Metal Reviews
    $12.00
  • Fourth and final volume documenting Magma's now legendary residency at Le Triton celebrating their 35th anniversary. The core lineup is augmented by Aymeric Avice (trumpet), Hugues Mayot (sax), and Frédéric d'Oelsnitz (Fender Rhodes/keys). The focus of this set is on the late 70s/early 80s material. Granted that isn't prime period Magma but the band serves the material well and there is a blistering version of Kohntarkoz Anteria (K.A.).
    $36.00
  • "Another excellent release from Poland's OSADA VIDA. Better than their last one "The Body Parts Party" in my opinion, but not as good as "Three Seats Behind A Triangle"."Uninvited Dreams" opens with a good heavy sound with keyboards. It settles when the vocals arrive 1 1/2 minutes in. It picks up before 3 1/2 minutes. Great sound 6 minutes in as the guitar makes some noise. Vocals are back to end it. "My Nightmare Is Scared Of Me" is my favourite track. Love those melancholic keys to open. It makes me think of OPETH's "Damnation". Drums then take over as they beat slowly as synths wash in with bass. Amazing sound. Those melancholic keys are back briefly before the song kicks in with guitar leading. Nice. It turns heavy with synths playing over top. Vocals before 3 minutes as it settles. It kicks back in at 6 minutes. "Childmare (A Goodnight Story)" kicks in hard with lots of heaviness and guitar. Vocals and riffs before a minute. Check out the bass and guitar 2 1/2 minutes in. Vocals are back followed by organ before 5 minutes. I like the section 6 minutes in with the relaxing guitar and heavy drums. It gets even better as it plays out. So uplifting 8 minutes in."Lack Of Dreams" opens with heavy drums as guitar joins in. It settles with synths but it's still powerful. Vocals follow including guest female vocals. How good is this ! It settles before 4 minutes then we get a sample of spoken words before it starts to build. So good ! Bass after 7 1/2 minutes then the band kicks in. It settles after 9 minutes with dual vocals. Guitar and synths follow. "Is The Devil From Spain ?" is a Spanish flavoured instrumental that sounds fantastic with those intricate sounds. "Is That Devil From Spain Too?" has a nice heavy sound to it with prominant bass. Guitar before a minute. Here we go ! It then settles some as synths lead the way before 4 minutes.The guitar is back 5 minutes in as it kicks in heavily. Keys before 6 1/2 minutes followed by guitar in a relaxing soundscape. "Neverending Dream" opens with some atmosphere. It picks up after 1 1/2 minutes. Vocals 3 minutes in. It kicks in more a minute later. A guitar solo after 4 1/2 minutes as bass throbs and drums beat. It settles with vocals before 8 minutes.Another great sounding album from this band. You have to pick up at least one of their last three records, you won't be disappointed." - ProgArchives
    $15.00
  • Third album from a band that is essentially a mash up of members from Sieges Even, Sun Caged and Dreamscape.  Their music carries on very much in the style of the later Sieges Even albums.  In other words progressive rock that leans towards the heavier side of the spectrum.  Rush, Rabin-era Yes, Saga, and Dream Theater come to mind as influences.  Quite melodic and if you are so inclined you'll hear some incredible chops from guitarist Markus Steffen.  The band corraled Stream Of Passion's Marcela Bovio for a guest vocal appearance, dueting with Arno Menses.This is the deluxe 2CD edition.  It sports a really cool looking 3D cover.  The bonus CD is a live concert recorded in Mannheim in 2012.
    $19.00
  • ""Scattered Horizons" is the closest thing to a female-fronted Symphony X that the world will ever see—I don't think a sex change is on Russell Allen's to-do list. The album was penned by an Austrian group calling itself Siren's Cry, and they show a magical amount of coherent songwriting and surprising instrumental performances throughout what is their first full-length effort. Stylistically, Siren's Cry takes copious amounts of influence from early Symphony X (think "The Divine Wings of Tragedy" through "V") and some fellow Austrian exports such as Edenbridge, obviously including dazzling guitar work, elegant keyboards, and other authentic qualities of the progressive power metal regime. Fronted by one Katarina Bilak, "Scattered Horizons" makes the grass a little greener, the wings of tragedy a bit more divine.Bilak fronts the group excellently, though her tone and performance require some conditioning on the listener's end; this genre has much more Russell Allen-esque types and the like, so having Bilak rule the vocal realm might throw off some folks at first. However, she fits Siren's Cry's host of traits and techniques wonderfully, especially during the schizophrenic "A Controversial Mind," in which she flies all over the place and kicks a whole lot of rumps in the process. Many of the anthems are quite memorable and hooking, with several boasting stellar choruses, complicated guitar/keyboard leads that are done with care and precision, and noteworthy performances from the rhythm section as well. "Cold Amber & Scalding Tears," the ballad, is surprisingly decent, like most of the release; no track manages to misfire.And yes, they occasionally come off as a little too dependent on the structures of Symphony X, because they, you know, sound like Symphony X. The main riff from "Oratory & Sins," for example, is almost the same central guitar sequence of "Of Sins and Shadows," and Siren's Cry generally moves around like its primary influence. Well, I guess it's nice that I've been arrested at least four times for stalking Symphony X, otherwise I'd find it a little annoying. However, minor irritations like the unoriginal guitar work are few and far between; Siren's Cry proves itself to be a very unique and imaginary bunch. Tracks like "Elegy of R'lyeh" and its smooth jazz section are superb cuts of progressive metal at its finest, while explosive numbers such as "Serpents of War" and "Draconian Spectrum" display rapid themes and intensity kicked up a notch or two, clearly more in line with the power metal side of the coin.Other than the minor idiosyncrasies that the folks of Siren's Cry can call their own, a grand portion of the work within "Scattered Horizons" is somewhat of a special, unexpected treat for folks intrigued by the progressive power metal style that has been mastered by Symphony X and reproduced by many others. "Scattered Horizons" captures the grandiose themes and perplexing musical aspects of the identity without sacrificing admirable songwriting in the process, and Siren's Cry shows an ample amount of persistence and maturity at album one. I'm not calling this a masterpiece to acquire immediately, but it's worth a shot if you enjoy Symphony X. Nicely done." - antiMusic.com
    $12.00
  • "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
  • Take 4 members of Shaman, add in Angra's incredible drummer Aquiles Priester.  Have Russell Allen produce their album and what do you get?  Well not exactly what you would expect but ultimately maybe something even better.  Noturnall's debut touches on power, trash, and progressive metal and all blended together with a melodic modern edge.  Russell Allen even provides guest vocals on one tune.  Turn this one up to 11!"What do you all expect from bands with some praised members in their lineups?Of course, all of us have great expectations, and in Brazilian NOTURNALL, with members from KARMA, SHAMAN, HANGAR, ANGRA, ALMAH, TEMPESTT and others really is above all our expectations, and their first album, “Noturnall” is a heavy piece, an excellent amount of heavy music.They play a modern and heavy form of Prog Metal, with great vocals (Thiago Bianchi is in a great shape, singing both in high tunes as in low ones), abrasive and heavy guitars (both in aggressive riffs and melodic solos, and Léo Mancini shows a very good technique), bass in a technical and heavy shape (Fernando Quesada is a excellent bass player), fantastic drums (please, it’s a work from Aquiles Priester, one of Brazil greatest drummers), and the keyboards are simple great (creating great atmospheres and passages, a fine work from Juninho Carelli). And prepare your ears, for the album is a heavy weight champion, one of best works from Brazil.The sound production is wonderful, done by SYMPHONY X’s vocalist Russell Allen along with NOTURNALL members. You can hear all instruments loud and clear, but the modern and aggressive aspect is present all time. It’s a blow in your face!The Best moments: “No Turn at All”, the heavy and with some groove aspects “Nocturnal Human Side” (great vocals, in a duet of Thiago along with Russell), the wonderful “Sugar Pill”, and the abrasive “Fake Healer”.Perfection, nothing more to say, so remember what your dear Ol’ Big Daddy here always says: buy your physical copies, for MP3 is for sissies." - Metal Temple 
    $15.00
  • "Alice Cooper's third album, Love It to Death, can be pinpointed as the release when everything began to come together for the band. Their first couple of albums (Pretties for You and Easy Action) were both largely psychedelic/acid rock affairs and bore little comparison to the band's eventual rip-roaring, teenage-anthem direction. The main reason for the quintet's change was that the eventually legendary producer Bob Ezrin was on board for the first time and helped the Coopers focus their songwriting and sound, while they also perfected their trashy, violent, and theatrical stage show and image. One of the band's most instantly identifiable anthems, "I'm Eighteen," was what made the album a hit, as well as another classic, "Is It My Body." But like Alice Cooper's other albums from the early '70s, it was an incredibly consistent listen from beginning to end. The garage rocker "Caught in a Dream" as well as the ass-kicking "Long Way to Go" and a pair of epics -- the Doors-esque "Black Juju" and the eerie "Ballad of Dwight Fry" -- showed that Alice was easily in league with other high-energy Detroit bands of the era (MC5, Stooges). Love It to Death was the first of a string of classic releases from the original Alice Cooper group." - All Music Guide
    $5.00
  • New limited edition digipak - remastered gold disc edition of the band's fourth album. Features one bonus live track.
    $16.00
  • "Klaus Schulze - the master of electronic music - will release with ""La Vie Electronique Vol. 15"" recordings from the years 1997 to 2000. With this edition the series 'La Vie Electronique"" comes to an end for the present. On CD 1 is the last of the 25 CDs in the JUBILEE EDITION set in 1997. Klaus recorded it during April 1997 in his studio. This long track is, as Klaus puts it: ""...for playing along to. The listeners and fans can add their own melodies and sounds. Harmony is in C. They can play to it in c minor, g minor and f minor"". Disc 2: The first two tracks (L'opera aperta & La tolleranza) are the second part and the encore of Klaus' solo concert in Bologna, Italy, on the 15th of December 1998 at the ""Teatro delle Celebrazioni"". The third track was especially recorded by Klaus for the ULTIMATE EDITION box in late October 1999. Disc 3: These three tracks are a collaboration with an old friend, the cello player Wolfgang Tiepold. Most of the Schulze aficionados know (and love) Schulze's vintage albums with Wolfgang. He visited Klaus in his studio again in summer 1999, twenty years after the two did some good things in concerts and on some albums (mainly ""X"" on which Tiepold also conducted the small orchestra for the famous Ludwig track)."
    $21.00