Mirrors

SKU: ALT-030
Label:
Altrock Records
Category:
Avant Garde/RIO
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""Two years after Iridule, finally the italian band Yugen comes back with its first live album. The cd captures the show at RIO Fest 2011, in Carmaux, France, and presents the group in an extraordinary seven-member line-up.

As Sid Smith writes in the liner notes, Mirrors is "a dizzying cavalcade of turn-on-a-dime rhythms, intriguing harmonies and striking, anthemic melodies that have a habit of drilling down deep into the consciousness of the listener".

"Yugen represents an exciting forward-looking trend in European music", Smith underlines, "marrying both intellect and emotion in one seamless and coherent partnership. How successful they are in this endeavour you can judge for yourself by playing this remarkable and frequently thrilling live souvenir.""

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    $14.00
  • Long promised second album from this stellar Norwegian symphonic band is now with us. Before the release of Hinterland, the band had made available (through their website) two lengthy demo tracks that garnered a lot of buzz. These tracks "Imperial Winter White Dwarf" and "Leprechan Behind The Door" appear here is re-recorded versions. The rest of the disc consists of material drawn from the band's past as well as one of the tracks from the Hinterland sessions that never got finished. Its not a long disc but its definitely a matter of quality over quantity. If you like Mellotrons, Hammond organds, flutes, retro sounding guitars....look no further. Essential listening for any symphonic rock fan.
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  • Deluxe CD/DVD digipak.  The DVD features a "making of" documentary and lots of other stuff."Opening up the autumn season in grand fashion, a deluge of fantastic releases are upon us and spearheading that charge is veteran progressive black/Viking metal titans Enslaved and their newest and likely earthiest opus RIITIIR. Continuing along the long and illustrious progressive path the band first started drifting toward with 2000’s Mardraum: Beyond The Within. But if 2010’s Axioma Ethica Odini was a return of punishing metal authority, RIITIIR is an exercise in extremes and bombast – everything here is enormous in scale and execution. The songs themselves (most shooting well beyond the eight minute mark) each featuring a myriad of movements and cascading motifs, everything the Enslaved fan loves about the band here and in grand style!Glacial sheets of guitar are par the course for RIITIIR, the opening salvo of “Thoughts Like Hammers” steamrolling right out of the gate, near equal play of harsh and clean vocals coming into play with time, threatening and soothing in equal measure. These peaks and valleys return in epic fashion on “Veilburner,” trade-offs and synchrony of the two ends being used to tremendous effect, the cleans in particular used better here than on any release since Herbrand Larsen joined the group in 2004. This clean expression comes through in grand fashion on 11 minute closer “Forsaken,” a decidedly low key but super effective end to the journeys the album takes.It isn’t all clean wailing and atmospheric pomp however, the band lovingly riffing out with rediscovered metallic bravado with “Roots of the Mountain” and “Storm of Memories.” Though the harsh cliffs at the outset are soon met with clean voiced and mellotron-drenched ridgetops, eventually the listener is firmly kicked back into the abyss, this time accompanied by some fantastic and ongoing solos. It’s fascinating to see the rediscovered metallic vigor that came to life on the last release mixed so fervently with the band’s ever-growing melodic sense and expressive voice. These two aspects of the band, combined with their increasingly complex compositional sense, make for an exhausting and enthralling journey.All that being said, what’s featured on RIITIIR won’t come as a surprise to anyone who’s listened to the band for even the past couple years, let alone the last decade – the album is simply another notch along the belt of progression by degrees. The compositions are bigger, more ornate, bristling with finer features and bombast. It’s the band’s thickest release in a long line of releases guitar Ivar Bjørnson has joked are ‘all two weeks long’. With each of those releases however the joy lay in divining the details over repeat listens, unearthing the secrets between the out layers. That remains the case here, RIITIIR another fantastic from a band that burst past the 20-year mark and is showing zero signs of aging. " - Blistering.com
    $15.00
  • "Think of the new Megadeth album like this: take Endgame and add a large dose of Youthanasia and Countdown to Extinction, then mix it all in a blender and you’ll get a good idea of how it sounds. For die-hard Megadeth fans (like me), the album is a catchy, solid slice of good metal. Much like Endgame and United Abominations, Th1rt3en has a few weak spots, but is generally a decent album. Far from just generic recycling however, it has some fantastic highlights.The three opening tracks easily fit with some of Megadeth’s classic material, as Dave Mustaine has lost none of his talent for catchy melodies and thrash-metal attitude. Well produced and composed, the album flows much better than Endgame and more consistently than United. Dave’s voice retains much of its character but is not what it once was. He has wisely chosen to stay in his lower range, perhaps in order to avoid having to use his falsetto (…case in point). A curious thing about this album is its inclusion of earlier Megadeth material from past sessions. One of my favorites has to be Black Swan, from the United Abominations-era. As it happens, Dave’s voice was still in good condition in 2007, and it shows. Lyrically, Dave sticks to standard Megadeth-themes: the apocalypse, personal demons, ect. Some of the lyrics here are very compelling and well-written, but his pedantic musings on the “New World Order” have become a little obnoxious. Dave’s lyrics on political paranoia and deception worked very well with cold-war topics like those on Rust in Peace, but nowadays I can only cringe when he mouths off about The Illuminati and a “one world currency”.  That and, for obvious reasons, I would advise some caution when writing lyrics that denounce “A book written by man, use to control and demand” (from New World Order), when you espouse a similar book in your private life. I won’t even start with the lyrics on Fast Lane (you’d think Dave would have learned from Moto Psycho, ugh). Anyway, I should say that the guitar playing from Dave Mustaine and Chris Broderick is absolutely mind-blowing and it’s great to have Dave Ellefson back in the rhythm section as well. Aside from some of the things I've moaned about here, I found Th1rt3en to be a very satisfying Megadeth album." - Metal Injection
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  • Perhaps we all burnt out on this album some time ago - I know I played it to death. Released in the US as "Security". In retrospect it may well be Gabriel's solo album that held up the best and could be considered the pinnacle of his solo career. Gabriel explored world music tribal rhythms and sampled sounds The whole album has lots of electronic processing courtesy of Larry Fast which lend an otherworldly quality to the production (which is of audiophile standards). It's an extremely dynamic recording that will tax your audio system and your brain. This one is filled with classics like "San Jacinto" and "Lay Your Hands On Me". Not prog rock per se - but progressive for sure. Very forward thinking thought provoking intense music. A classic.
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  • Tenth studio album from the reconstituted verison of Focus led by Thijs van Leer.  Returning is original drummer Pierre van der Linden.  Bobby Jacobs handles bass and Menno Gootjes lead guitar.  X doesn't break any new ground.  This sounds just like classic Focus - van Leer concentrates on flute and Hammond organ and vocals.  Pure prog with strong jazzy overtones in places.  Neat cover art and logo courtesy of Roger Dean.  Highly recommended.
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  • "Impetus is the debut offering from Austrian melodic metal band Ecliptica. The band plays a fairly straightforward melodic metal that incorporates elements of both progressive and power metal. Imagine Axel Rudi Pell with traces of Edguy, Sonata Arctica, and perhaps Ayreon (lyrics weren't provided, but this feels like a rock opera or at least a concept album at times) and you'll get a basic idea of Ecliptica's sound.It's a little surprising to find an album like this on the Frontiers label. Frontiers is no stranger to melodic metal, of course, but their releases tend to be of much higher profile and much higher quality. The musicianship on Impetus is high caliber, approaching progressive metal technicality at times, and there are some great melodies, but the songwriting is a bit uneven. When the band is doing a full-on rocker, it's easy to get into the music and melodies; likewise with their more melodic, sing-along power metal tracks (see "Carry On" and "Land of Silence"). The rock opera type songs ("Turn Away" in particular) just seem a bit too melodramatic, and are marred by some less than stellar vocal performances.Making use of both male and female vocalists is a shrewd move, and one that would pay off if the vocalists in question further develop their talents. Elisabeth Fangmeyer and Thomas Tiebur have decent enough voices, but they both have a definite accent and seem to lack the kind of power that could really draw listeners into the music. It sounds like the vocals are buried in the mix as well. This would be a drawback for any release, but on an album like Impetus where Fangmeyer and Tiebur often appear to be playing characters in a rock opera, their weakness is a major distraction from the otherwise impressive music.Impetus is a perfectly solid but not particularly remarkable offering from a band that definitely shows potential. Future releases from Ecliptica bear watching, but Impetus is unlikely to satisfy most fans of Frontiers' melodic metal roster." - Hardrock Haven
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  • Atmospheric and mysterious. Those were the key words that Arjen Anthony Lucassen had in mind when he started his ambient rock project Ambeon back in 2001. For this, the multi-instrumentalist started a co-operation with singer Astrid van der Veen, a 14 year old super talent that Lucassen had discovered shortly before, and the later Within Temptation drummer Stephen van Haestregt. Ten years after the first release, Ambeon’s only album Fate of a Dreamer is now being released as a digipack with remastered original recordings, some single-edits/remixes and an extra track. The big surprise is a bonus-cd with acoustic versions of various Ambeon songs and many Ayreon classics, which has been Lucassen's flag ship for almost two decades.DeLuxe 2CD Set in Digipack, Original Album, Extensive Booklet,27 Remastered Tracks = 10 tracks Original Album + 17 Bonus Tracks,over 115 minutes of music.Liner notes by Arjen Lucassen.Track listingTMD-070 AMBEON – Fate Of A Dreamer: The Album – The Unplugged RecordingsCHAPTER 1: THE ALBUM1. Estranged 2:512. Ashes 5:293. High 4:154. Cold Metal 6:505. Fate 7:456. Sick Ceremony 3:447. Lost Message 4:338. Surreal 4:389. Sweet Little Brother 6:0810. Dreamer 5:17Bonus Tracks11. Cold Metal 3:48 – Single Version12. Merry-Go-Round 4:4513. High 3:29 – RemixCHAPTER 2: THE UNPLUGGED RECORDINGS1. Actual Fantasy 1:252. Valley of the Queens 2:393. Ashes 3:154. Charm of the Seer 3:295. Castle Hall 4:336. Estranged 2:497. Temple of the Cat 3:328. Isis and Osiris 6:099. High 3:4310. Garden of Emotions 4:3111. Sick Ceremony 3:0212. House on Mars 5:2213. Lost Message 3:4214. Into the Black Hole / Cold Metal 5:10REMASTERED IN THE 24-BIT DOMAIN FROM THE ORIGINAL MASTERS
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  • "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! "
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