Friday, June 29, 2012

The Psychedelic Ensemble Release Silent Sam

As you all know, I am a fan of The Psychedelic Ensemble, and I look forward to every output this solo artist comes up with. You can still download the interview I conducted with the artist, known simply as TPE, from the Podcast tab of this site and hear about this wonderfull music.

Combining progressive, art, symphonic rock and some classical styles, The Psychedelic Ensemble present dramatic musical journeys on all three of his albums: The Art of Madness, The Myth of Dying, and the wonderful The Dream of the Magic Jongleur.

So it was a bit of a suprise when I read the DPRP news today and found out that TPE has released a single. With three albums already under his belt, this new release, called "Silent Sam" is available as a download for a nominal price on his website.

You can download the track HERE!

Proggers Silhouette Cross the Rubicon


Silhouette, whose previous album "Moods" is already 4 years old, are set to release "Across the Rubicon" this Saturday.

The track list is as follows:
1- Across the Rubicon (2:19)
2- Breathe (11:33)
3- Empty Places (4:06)
4- When Snow's Falling Down (7:10)
5- Anybody (11:22)
6- Grendel Memories (5:42)
7- Nothing (4:23)
8- Don't Stop This Movie (11:56)

From the press release:

"Dutch band Silhouette release their third studio album, Across The Rubicon. This Saturday June 30th they will perform several new songs in De Boerderij, Zoetermeer, Holland as support of Marathon (as ENorm) – follow ups to A Maze (2006) and Moods (2009).
Friday, June 29th, Silhouette will perform a try-out show together with Incidense at Musicon, Den Haag, Holland.

As a promo of this new CD, Silhouette releases a full song, exclusive for DPRP on Soundcloud: Grendel Memories!

Across the Rubicon was recorded and produced between July 2011 and March 2012 at the Brewery in Vleuten (The Netherlands). Music composed by Silhouette, music arranged and performed by Silhouette and Aldo Adema. Production by Erik Laan, mixing by Aldo Adema, mastering by Han Uil. Artwork and layout by Ed Unitsky. Special appearance by MaryO on flute and backing vocals."

District 97 Having Trouble with Machines

A favourite of this radio show ever since I heard parts of Hybrid Child, District 97 are set to release their highly anticipated second album titled "Trouble with Machines" on July 17th via Laser's Edge.

Tracklist is as follows:
1- Back and Forth
2- Open Your Eyes
3- The Actual Color
4- The Perfect Young Man
5- Who Cares?
6- Read Your Mind
7- The Thief

The press release reads:

"The band was formed in the fall of 2006 by drummer Jonathan Schang, keyboardist Rob Clearfield, bassist Patrick Mulcahy and guitarist Sam Krahn (replaced in 2008 by current guitarist Jim Tashjian). The foursome from Chicago honed a no-holds barred style of Liquid Tension Experiment-inspired Instrumental Rock before deciding the right vocalist was needed to complement their sound; enter 2007 American Idol Top 10 Female Finalist, Leslie Hunt. With a look, sound and stage presence comparable to a young Ann Wilson from Heart, Leslie's dynamic performances pushed the band into a new direction that forged a unique marriage between accessible, catchy vocal melodies and an adventurous instrumental prowess. She was followed shortly thereafter by one of Chicago's finest young guitarists, Jim Tashjian. With this new blend of charisma and stellar musicianship in place, their live shows at festivals such as CalProg and RoSfest, and numerous appearances across the USA cemented the band as a force to be reckoned with onstage.

In May 2010, the band signed with Laser's Edge, the foremost home of new Progressive music. Laser's Edge oversaw worldwide physical and digital release of District 97's debut effort, Hybrid Child, which was released to worldwide acclaim in September 2010, and went on to top many "Best of 2010" lists. Appearing on the recording is cellist extraordinaire Katinka Kleijn of the world-renowned Chicago Symphony Orchestra, who also appears on their upcoming Summer 2012 release, Trouble With Machines.

The band now returns with their second opus Trouble With Machines. With her fantastic voice, and looks to match, Leslie Hunt has captured the imagination of the male-oriented prog rock scene. Complexity is one of the hallmarks of District 97's compositions but the album is laced with catchy vocal melodies. The track "The Perfect Young Man" features a guest vocal appearance by KING CRIMSON/ASIA bassist JOHN WETTON. RICH MOUSER who has produced albums for SPOCK'S BEARD and NEAL MORSE mixed the album.

Building on the strengths of Hybrid Child, this latest release pushes the envelope even further, and solidifies District 97's position at the forefront of uncompromising Rock music."

Also, the first 2,000 copies of Trouble With Machines come with a bonus pro-shot live DVD filmed at the band's 2011 performance at the Rites Of Spring Festival in Gettysburg, PA.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Friday on the IPRS

Today, Friday, on the IPRS you could win a chance to get tickets to see Arena live in Quebec City. You must be a resident of Quebec or the border states of the US, and be able to attend the concert on November 10th 2012. Montreal prog band Mystery will be the opening act.

Listen to the IPRS this Friday at 2 PM (Eastern), and Sunday at 7 PM (Eastern) at
for your chance to win.

miRthkon to release new live DVD


The prog world is buzzing with excitement about the forthcoming DVD release by miRthkon; Oakland, CA based amplified chamber ensemble masquerading as a rock band. This illusion is well maintained by the fact that from time to time they do indeed rock. Maintaining a passionate aesthetic stance that they are (quite happily) ‘beneath everything’, their music – whether evoking the direct or indirect influence of progressive rock, contemporary classical abstraction, avant-garde jazz, catchy hook-laden pop, or thrash metal – is held to a simple but firm standard: Does it sound good? miRthkon’s forthcoming live DVD titled (Format) is a testament to the group’s innovative approach to live performance and music in general.

“The DVD was somewhat of an accident,” explains band leader and guitarist Wally Scharold. “It was not planned. We had incorporated live and pre-recorded video projection in our shows since mid-2008. These were originally introduced as short interludes between songs to keep the audience engaged during long song breaks due to required technical changes to perform the next song. By the time we played CalProg in October 2010, our multimedia approach was at its most ambitious, including nearly 30 of these videos.

It was very well rehearsed and we performed it beautifully, all captured in a free 32-track recording, provided by the festival. I had filmed our set from a single angle in the hall’s light booth for archival purposes, which was hardly enough to justify a legit concert film. But after reaching out to the fans, we managed to track down a couple more angles – one very close to the stage – and suddenly we had the raw footage to cut together something. However, the lack of any real planning (and professional videographers) made for less than ideal footage, so we had to get really creative with the editing when we just didn’t have the shot we wanted. One and 1/2 years later, it’s finally done.” Unlike a standard concert film, (Format) integrates interviews, surrealistic documentary footage, and an underlying plot pointing to a vast conspiracy!

miRthkon’s diverse musical influences range from Classical: Webern, Stravinsky, Dutilleux, Varese, Feldman, Gerhard. Metal: late 80s/early 90s thrash, Meshuggah, Fantomas. Avant-Rock: Mr. Bungle, Albert Marcoeur, Thinking Plague, Tipographica, Magma. Jazz: Eric Dolphy, Jimmy Giuffre, Anthony Braxton, Muhal Richard Abrams, Henry Threadgill, Hermeto Pascoal, Itibere Orquestra Familia, Ben Monder, Raymond Scott. Pop/Rock: ZZ Top, Michael Jackson, Ben Folds. “Zappa is the primary influence, on multiple levels: the approach to the music is similar how the rock band format is run much more like a chamber ensemble,” says Wally. “Players need fluency in virtually all modes of performance practice in which their instrument is or has been involved including contemporary classical, big band to avant/free jazz, metal, prog, funk, etc. Zappa’s attitude/philosophy/aesthetic/humor is also a huge influence. In a way, you could say we’ve hopped on to a similar thread of ‘Conceptual Continuity’. We employ his ‘journalistic’ approach of incorporating experiences from our own life/environment into the content of our work. Often to an extreme, though most of that goes over peoples’ heads.”

miRthkon is:
Wally Scharold – guitars, vocals, composition, sound design, conceptual design, text, video, producer
Travis Andrews – guitars
Matt Lebofsky – bass guitar, vocals
Carolyn Walter – piccolo, flute, clarinet, bass clarinet, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone
Jamison Smeltz – alto saxophone, baritone saxophone, vocals
Matt Guggemos – drums and percussion
Jarred McAdams – video, text, conceptual collaborator

In support of their new DVD release, miRthkon will tour thee US in August. Joining the band at various stops will be MoeTar, Lovely Little Ladies (Cheer Accident side project), District 97, Thinking Plague, Kayo Dot, and TBD.

miRthkon Tour Dates:
8/11 Baltimore
8/12 NYC
8/13 NYC
8/14 Philly (Sellersville)
8/15 Cleveland
8/16 Detroit
8/17 Chicago
8/18 Chicago
8/19 Kansas City
8/20 St. Louis/TBD
8/21 Omaha
8/22 Denver
8/23 Santa Fe
8/24 Tucson
8/25 San Diego
8/26 LA
8/28 SF

Release date – July 3, 2012

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Mikael Åkerfeldt and Steve Hackett Recording Together

This news came as a total surprise to me. A random visit on the Opeth webside weilded this little tidbit!

After having done a wonderful collaboration with Porcupine Tree's Steven Wilson, and given us Storm Corrosion, Mikael Åkerfeldt has now recorded some vocals for a new recording of the classic Genesis song "Supper's Ready" with Steve Hackett.

Steve Hackett famously revisited some of his and his old bandmates' material in the aptly named "Genesis Revisited" with such notable prog luminaries as Bill Bruford, John Wetton, Ian McDonald, Tony Levin, and many, many more. The re-worked songs have also been a staple of his live shows.

To my knowledge never has he mentioned, either on stage or in interviews, a desire to rework this magnum opus of the Genesis back catalogue. More news is sure to come, and I look forward to listening to this new recording.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The Flower Kings Premiere Medley of "Numbers"

After five long years, The Flower Kings are back with new album Banks of Eden, to be released June 19th (US, June 18th Europe) via InsideOut Music. The Flower Kings emerged as one of the most popular bands of the early '90s Prog movement and became one of the scene's leading icons together with Porcupine Tree, Spocks Beard and Dream Theater.

In light of the album's impending release date, THE FLOWER KINGS are now debuting a medley of the 25-minute opening track "Numbers." The medley can be heard here:

TFK_Banks Of edenBanks of Eden was recorded with the band playing live in one room in a studio in January 2012, a recording much like in the old days of classic prog, before computers hit the market.

"We aimed for the classic big warm vinyl-sound of old records by Queen, Genesis, Zeppelin or Deep Purple," says founder and frontman Roine Stolt.
The music contains most of the trademarks that put The Flower Kings at the top of modern Prog. The theme of the album is the struggle between a world in constant motion and in addictive consumption, and on the other side, finding a place and a little time where our souls find rest and peace.

"The album is a reflection of my thoughts on the world of today, I would say. I think this is where Roine Stolt as a person stands today. There are elements of both politics and religion, but I try to write lyrics without lecturing the fans. Still I always try to put something of a true wisdom of life or poetic beauty into the lyrics that hopefully stays with them." added Stolt.

Two Deluxe Multimedia Releases from Erik Norlander

In 2009, master keyboardist, Erik Norlander, went into the studio with a new set of virtuoso musicians to record re-imaginings of his favorite instrumental compositions as a project called "The Galactic Collective." In 2010, Erik released a preview of the project on CD-R through Chian Productions in Ohio. In 2011, Erik took the project on the road and recorded the results. Now in 2012, we finally have the complete document of Erik's massive undertaking in two remarkable releases, one in studio, the other on stage. Each title includes a video DVD and two audio CDs released by Erik's company, Think Tank Media, in partnership with UK prog giant, Gonzo Multimedia. All discs are replicated -- not CD-R or DVD-R -- and each contains deluxe, full-color 5x7" booklets with extensive liner notes written by those directly involved with the project.

The long-awaited DVD/2CD studio release from symphonic rock keyboard master, Erik Norlander, is now here. THE GALACTIC COLLECTIVE is a brand new take on the best of Erik’s vast instrumental compositions written for Rocket Scientists, Lana Lane and his own solo albums over the years. Recorded on an amazing arsenal of classic analog synthesizers (including 6 Moog instruments), Hammond organ and an incredible Steinway model B grand piano at Cleveland Ohio’s prestigious Magnetic North Studio with engineer Chris Keffer and executive producer Dena Henry along with bassist Mark Matthews, drummer Nick LePar and choral vocal sections by Lana Lane and John Payne along with a suite of guest guitarists including John Payne, Mitch Perry, Mark McCrite, Ron Redfield and Freddy DeMarco, THE GALACTIC COLLECTIVE is a must have for all fans of keyboard - oriented instrumental progressive rock. The DVD and 2CD set includes the complete album, ERIK NORLANDER - THE GALACTIC COLLECTIVE, both on CD and DVD with the complete in-studio video shot during the actual sessions (as seen on YouTube). The DVD includes extensive interview footage of Erik discussing each song, its conception and new interpretation for this project. A second disc of well-crafted (not filler!) unreleased alternate versions and a new recording of Erik’s classic arrangement of “Space: 1999” makes up the second CD as Echoes from the Collective. Full color, detailed booklet with liner notes by Michelle Moog, Executive Director of The Bob Moog Foundation and daughter of maverick synthesizer pioneer and inventor, Robert Moog.
Featuring Erik Norlander (keyboards), Freddy DeMarco (guitars),
Mark Matthews (bass) and Nick LePar (drums) with special guests:
John Payne (guitars, choral vocals), Lana Lane (choral vocals), Mitch
Perry (guitars), Ron Redfield (guitars) and Mark McCrite (guitars)


First came the studio version, now here is the live version! The DVD and 2CD set includes the complete album, ERIK NORLANDER - THE GALACTIC COLLECTIVE, performed LIVE at The Rites of Spring Festival 2011 along with the “Into the Sunset Suite”and the Norlander-penned Lana Lane songs, “Capture the Sun” and“Secrets of Astrology” creatively woven into medleys to complete the celestial sojourn with guest vocals by none other than Lana Lane herself! Erik’s Modular Moog synthesizer, “The Wall of Doom,”was used extensively at this concert, and band is introduced with an excellent and informative monologue from Michelle Moog, Executive Director of The Bob Moog Foundation and daughter of the late maverick synthesizer pioneer and inventor, Robert Moog. Full color, detailed booklet includes not only beautiful photos from the concert but also liner notes by Erik's synth tech, former Moog Music designer and ELP keyboard tech, August Worley, along with an additional article written by Erik himself especially for this release. LIVE IN GETTYSBURG is the inevitable companion to its partner release, THE GALACTIC COLLECTIVE - DEFINITIVE EDITION, that contains the complete studio recordings along with extensive video interviews.

Featuring Erik Norlander (keyboards), Freddy DeMarco (guitars),
Mark Matthews (bass) and Nick LePar (drums)
with special guest vocalists Lana Lane and Debrissa McKinney

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Playlist of IPRS #108

This past Friday, at 2 PM Eastern, the International Prog Rock Show returned on UK70sProgRock radio station after a nearly two month hiatus. The show will replay today, Sunday, at 7 PM Eastern Time. Catch it if you can since podcasts will no longer be available. The show may be replayed in a week, since the IPRS will try to be a bi-monthly radio show.

This webpage will continue to bring you news and reviews in the world of prog, and also the setlists of the radio show, complete with links to the artists' pages so you, the listener, could go straight to the artist to purchase the music you love.

The playlist for show 108 was:

1. Already Dead, by Steve Thorne (Crimes & Reasons, 2012)
2. Distant Thunder, by Steve Thorne (Crimes & Reasons, 2012)
3. The Words You Hide, by Sylvan (Sceneries, 2012)
4. Fool or Subject, by ADN (Prelude, 1999)
5. Hawaii, by The Fierce and the Dead (On VHS, 2012)
6. Part 3, by The Fierce and the Dead (On VHS, 2012)
7. The Black Chord, by Astra (The Black Chord, 2012)
8. Orkahaugr, by Troy Donockley (Messages, 2012)
9. Now, Voyager, by Troy Donockley (Messages, 2012)
10. Storm Corrosion, by Storm Corrosion (Storm Corrosion, 2012)
11. Lock Howl, by Storm Corrosion (Storm Corrosion, 2012)
12. Perfect Love Song, by Squackett (Sea of Smiles CDS, 2012)
13. Rebirth: Smiling at the Changing Sky, by Piezo (Scene I: Harlequin, 2012)
14. Asparagus, by Special Providence (Soul Alert, 2012)
15. The Crush of Night, by Izz (The Crush of Night, 2012)

I may be repeating myself but: If you love the music, follow the links and purchase the music you love, so the artist may be able to write more.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Kerry Kompost Formerly of Mars Hollow to Play at Celebr8

This other bit of "Hollow" news, a follow-up to my previous post, is that on the Kerry Kompost side, things are looking bright. Kerry left these messages on his Facebook page:
"Ridiculously happy to announce I will be appearing at Celebr8 Prog 2012 --THE prog event of the year -- with VERY special guest and friend Matt Brown lending his vocal, keyboard and songwriting skills to the mix. We'll be playing original p...rogressive-pop and perhaps a cover or two -- can you spell X-T-C? :) VERY special thanks and a basket of gratitude to Geoff Banks and Jon Patrick aka Twang for allowing Matt and I the privilege of coming to the UK to take part in this incredible event. Shit --I gotta practice! See you soon, good people."
Later in the day he announced this other bit of news:
"In other cool news -- this day just keeps getting better! -- I've got an offer to produce my solo album from someone whose music completely changed my whole approach and outlook. I mean, this guy blew my mind wide open and ever since I heard his music back around 2000 or so, my own imagination has taken radical turns. Assuming I can get either a label or a Kickstarter thing going, perhaps I can make it happen. The possible producer's name? Mike Keneally. :) "
Best of luck, Kerry!

Touchstone Replace Mars Hollow at Celebr8 2012

Two bits of news have come out these past few days in the continuing saga of the Mars Hollow break-up. First bit of news is the title of this post. Here is the press release:

"With just about a month to go before the doors open for Celebr8 2012, we're pleased to announce that our very good pals Touchstone have been added to Sunday's bill. Wow !!

Touchstone have replaced Mars Hollow who have unfortunately had to pull out.

Also added to the bill is Gary Chandler of Jadis, supplementing the Sunday bill with an acoustic set. On the Saturday 07/07 Matt Stevens will be playing in the bar in advance of IQ's Subterranea set - the only performance of Subterranea in the London area this year !

And let's not forget all the other great bands playing - Pallas, Sean Filkins, Dec Burke, Magenta, The Tangent, Tinyfish, and headlining Sunday 08/07 off the back of their awesome Map of The Past album it's only the amazing It Bites !!!"

The second bit of news will be posted later today.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Ray Bradbury Is No More

Though this is not directly Prog related, the sad news came this morning that Sci-Fi author Ray Bradbury died in Los Angeles, California, after a lengthy illness, at the age of 91.

Sci-Fi has been a staple of prog music almost from its beginnings ("Get'em Out by Friday", is a sci-fi themed song if ever there was one), and Bradbury's novels and short stories have inspired many a musician.

It is also fitting, though, that Bradbury chose a headstone that reads "Author of Fahrenheit 451".

Rest in peace.

Riverside Signs Worldwide Deal with InsideOut Music

Riverside Photo
RIVERSIDE Photo by Anna Panasz

Riverside havs now signed a worldwide deal with InsideOut Music. And they are working on a new album to follow-up 2009's excellent "Anno Domini High Definition" and last year's great "Memories in My Head" EP.
Poland's Progressive Rock stars RIVERSIDE have signed a new worldwide deal with InsideOut Music, and the band is currently working on a new studio album for release in early 2013. The upcoming album is the much-anticipated full-length follow-up to 2009's Anno Domini High Definition, which entered the charts at No. 1 in Poland and attained Gold status in the band's home country.
RIVERSIDE has this to say about the new deal:
"We're very pleased that we'll keep collaborating with InsideOut/Century Media. We've overcome many difficulties together and we hope that the new contract, signed at the moment when we start another decade as a band, will help us to grow more, and will make us able to reach a larger number of listeners with our music. The new album is on the way. I believe it will be a new beginning for RIVERSIDE."
Thomas Waber, founder and label manager of InsideOut Music, adds:
"RIVERSIDE is one of the most important bands on InsideOutMusic and in the current Progressive Rock scene. Therefore I am extremely pleased to be able to renew and continue the relationship with our friends from Poland!"
You can follow the band's recording process of the new album by visiting their online blog here:
A in the studio video interview with the band directly can be seen here:

Elf Project Release "The Great Divide"

US based heavy proggers Elf Project release their second CD:
Featured Image
10T Records is excited to announce the pending select market release of the new full length CD by ELF PROJECT, entitled “The Great Divide,” on June 11, 2012, with an official street date of July 17, 2012. 
Hailing from the greater New York area, the Elf Project sound has really been enhanced and refined on “The Great Divide.” While still working from a foundation of 70′s era progressive rock, the band has infused a strong dose of classic power trio hard rock into the sound. Carl Schultz (lead vocals, bass, keyboards), Mike Cappadozy (guitars), and Dave Wayne (drums) successfully merge their influences into an infectious and decidedly driving sonic assault that never sacrifices melody.

Many have cited a clear RUSH influence in the band’s music and fans of that classic Canadian outfit are sure to find much to their liking on “The Great Divide.” Layers of melodic vocal harmonies sit atop a solid foundation of propulsive rhythms while tight, chunky guitar riffs and lush keyboard washes percolate throughout the mix. The music is full of unexpected twists and turns, from bright, hook-laden vocal-oriented pop stylings to complex proggy instrumentals.

“I was really pleased to hear the growth that Elf Project bring to this release,” says 10T president, Steve Carroll. “”Where the band’s previous CD was more of a studio project for Carl with guest musicians, this one is very much a whole band effort and it shows right from the start. The musicianship is super tight and energetic, with stellar, crisp production throughout.”

Shadow Circus Sign with 10T Records

I am happy to read that friends of the IPRS Shadow Circus (Hi John and David) have signed a deal with 10T Records:
Featured Image
"10T Records is thrilled to announce the signing of SHADOW CIRCUS for the release of their upcoming full length concept CD, entitled On a Dark and Stormy Night, in late Summer 2012. On a Dark and Stormy Night is based on the Newberry Award-winning science fiction fantasy classic, A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L’Engle, and is being released with the full cooperation of the L’Engle estate as it coincides with the 50th anniversary of the original publication of the book. On a Dark and Stormy Night is a progressive rock tour-de-force that finds the band’s creative scope widening, including elements of cinematic orchestral arrangements, classic Progressive Rock, Celtic music, and Metal.
Hailing from the New York City area, Shadow Circus began as an experiment by composer/guitarist John Fontana to pursue his passion for Progressive Rock. John was joined by longtime friend and vocalist, David Bobick, whose background in musical theater was a perfect match for John’s vision of a band that was as entertaining to watch on stage, as it was to listen to. Christening themselves with a name inspired by a fictional carnival from Ray Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes, Shadow Circus was born.
2006 saw the release of their debut CD, Welcome to the Freakroom, and earned the band a following and reputation as a theatrical and entertaining group with solid songwriting and impressive musicianship. But it was 2009′s Whispers and Screams that solidified Shadow Circus as a band to be watched, earning them their first appearance in 2010′s ProgDay festival, and numerous live appearances at B.B. King’s in New York City, the legendary Orion Studios in Baltimore, and The Magic Room in Boston. Continuing with their penchant for literary influences, this second release featured a song that recalls a famous episode of The Twilight Zone, and an epic suite lyrically inspired by Stephen King’s dark fantasy masterpiece, The Stand.
The music of the 2012 edition of Shadow Circus continues to draw on strongly emotional and literary themes in the context of a highly entertaining ensemble, recalling some of the flavors which are staples to the Progressive Rock sound, while challenging typical expectations of this genre with elements that are at once symphonic, cinematic, soulful, melodic, and, most importantly, rocking. Energized by a lineup featuring the return of original bassist/cellist Matt Masek, drummer Jason Brower, and David Silver on keyboards, the band is currently in the studio recording On a Dark and Stormy Night.
“Shadow Circus is extremely excited to begin what we think will be a long and fruitful partnership with 10T Records, a label that we admire for its integrity, and value of quality over quantity,” says John. “We are honored to join 10T’s roster of outstanding artists, whose music we have enjoyed and been inspired by.”
“John and I have been friends for a few years and it feels like it was destined that we would eventually work together,” says 10T Records president, Steve Carroll. “I was blown away by Whispers and Screams, but after seeing their amazing performance at ProgDay in 2010, I knew that the time was right for a partnership. We couldn’t possibly be any happier to be bringing “On a Dark and Stormy Night” to the world in just a few months.” 
In the meantime, Shadow Circus’ second release, Whispers and Screams, is now available for purchase through the 10T Records online store for immediate shipping worldwide."
You can still purchase their maxi-single "Rise" through the Shadow Circus website.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

UK Fill-In as Sunday Headliners at NEARfest

This just in from the NEARfest webpage:
"We are delighted to announce that the legendary progressive rock supergroup UK will be joining the NEARfest Apocalypse lineup as the Sunday night festival headliner with a four-piece lineup. By some streak of amazing fortune, the members of UK had simultaneous availability in their busy schedules, and were able to assume the mantle of festival headliner with less than a month to spare before the event.

Revolving around two iconic musicians, keyboardist/violinist Eddie Jobson and bassist/vocalist John Wetton, UK was the last of the 1970s progressive rock supergroups. UK seamlessly melded dazzling instrumental virtuosity, incredible compositional prowess, classical and jazz influences, and memorable song-craft into two classic studio albums that have endured the test of time and earned the band legions of fans. In the second decade of the new millennium these two luminaries have once again joined forces to bring UK’s timeless music back to the stage, thrilling audiences around the world at sold-out concerts. With an expanded four-piece lineup including celebrated rock/fusion drummer Gary Husband and noted fusion guitarist Alex Machacek, UK will feature music from both of its albums and classic-era King Crimson songs not able to be performed with the 3-piece lineup that recently toured the USA.

NEARfest Apocalypse will occur June 22-24, 2012 at Zoellner Arts Center, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA. Co-headlining with UK are Van der Graaf Generator (Friday night June 22) and Renaissance (Saturday night June 23). Although the festival has been sold out for some time, UK fans seeking to attend may look for second-hand tickets at the NEARfest website discussion forum
Ticket Board or Progressive Ears."

Kerry Kompost No Longer in Mars Hollow

I am sorry to hear that Kerry Chicoine (aka Kerry Kompost), is now the ex-bassist of Mars Hollow. I had the pleasure of seeing Mars Hollow at Terra Incognita two weeks ago and the band rocked on stage. Kerry was energetic, running all over the place, playing great, and having a fun time with the band and the audience. I also had the pleasure of meeting Kerry on the day before the show. Kerry grew up in Vermont and is the same age as I, and I learned that he used to come often to Montreal to see bands play at the old Forum. We realized we had seen pretty much the same bands at the same time.

So it is with surprise that I read the following on the PE forum under the title Mars Hollow Implodes:
"To all my PE friends and supporters of Mars Hollow; it is with a mixture of sadness, frustration and regret to inform you Mars Hollow — as you’ve come to know us — has ceased to exist as of yesterday. While I will NOT go into the reasons — they are highly personal — I will say the band dynamic has changed for the worse due to external pressures over the past six to eight months. At some point things became unbearable and I felt I had no choice but to draw a line in the sand. Sometimes, you have to be the Daddy, you know? Someone has to make the hard choices and I’ve never been afraid of doing that.

As you guys know, I’m not a bull-shitter and I don’t take a lot of crap from anyone. A rock band is supposed to be a fun and creative outlet and over the past several months, this band has been anything but fun. Since this is my hobby, and since it’s not my source of income, I feel it’s a no-brainer to extract myself from the situation, to cut out the cancer if you will, so that I can move forward in a creative fashion without any attendant external pressures.

I wish the guys in Mars Hollow all the continued success in the world and hope everything works out for them, including the upcoming Celebr8 show and the gig with CIRCA: in August.

Dejected but still kickin’,

It also seems that the band's publicist couteracted with a Facebook post:
"It is with deep regret that Mars Hollow announces the departure of bassist Kerry (Kompost) Chicoine. Please be assured that the band is striving to continue delivering good music to you, our public. Please watch this page for official statements and news from Mars Hollow."
To which Kerry replied that he did not leave but rather was fired from the band. 

Mars Hollow were to appear at the Celebr8 Festival and tour a bit in the UK. Now the future of the band seems a bit uncertain. I will post more as I learn more about the festival gigs and I wish all concerned the best for the future. In the meantime here is a video of a new song called Sound of Shadows performed at Terra Incognita that was posted on Terry's Facebook page. The song was premiered in Quebec during the festival, so this might be the last time we get to hear this version of it.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Enchant Signs Deal with InsideOut Music

Enchant, the San Francisco Bay area's long-running Prog Rock institution, has finally returned to the scene they once helped shape and establish! Originally founded in 1989 and with seven studio albums under their belt, it's been a long silence for Enchant since their last official release, the Live At Last 2CD/2DVD set from 2004.
Enchant is currently at work on an overdue, brand-new studio album, and have signed a new longterm worldwide deal with their perennial label-partner, InsideOut Music.
"It's been way too long!" says Douglas A. Ott, main songwriter and guitarist of Enchant. "We had to take time off from ENCHANT because a lot was going on in all of our lives. Divorces, marriages, kids, separations... finally the band is stable again and ready to get going on the new album!"
Ott furthermore adds, "Everyone is really excited and looking forward to the process again. I'm currently doing preproduction and putting together demos of the new material and very shortly I'll start recording the real tracks. We're taking our time and really focusing on the writing and arranging of this new material."
A new Enchant studio album is in its songwriting and pre-production stages right now and is expected to be available for an early 2013 release via InsideOut Music.


New Frequency Drift Out in July

German cinematic prog band Frequency Drift has announced the forthecoming release of their follow-up to last year's Ghosts. It is called "Laid to Rest" and will be out on July 6th 2012.

Tracks are:
1. Dead (10:15)
2. Parted (7:19)
3. Cold (15:32)
4. Wish (16:04)
5. Ice (9:33)
6. Copper (12:22)

As listeners to the International Prog Rock Show know, I have been a fan of FD since I first heard their debut album "Personnal Effects, Part I" in 2008. Last year's Ghosts had a change in tone and subject matter, and it seems that "Laid to Rest" will continue this pattern, as it will be darker and moodier. I look forward to hearing the whole album and will have to make due with this YouTube preview of one of the songs, "Dead" until then. You can pre-order the album here.