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Showing posts from August, 2014

Soft Machine Legend Hugh Hopper 10-CD Set Of Unreleased Recordings To Be Released By Gonzo Multimedia

London, UK - Hugh Hopper and Soft Machine fans worldwide are rejoicing to the news of the pending release of HUGH HOPPER - DEDICATED TO HUGH, a 10-CD Archival Celebration of the music of bass guitarist, composer, Hugh Hopper comprised of previously unreleased Hi-Fidelity recordings. Compiled by Michael King, a Canadian Hugh Hopper Scholar, the CDs will be released individually, beginning with Volume One, entitled 'Memories'.

This ten part series is to compliment a heretofore large body of work (over sixty titles) by presenting previously unreleased concert and studio recordings, with a focus on Hugh’s compositions as performed by groups under his leadership. All proceeds are to benefit Hugh's Hopper's family.

HUGH HOPPER - DEDICATED TO HUGH 10-CD set features:

Volume 1 - Memories
Hugh introduces a selection of rare tracks from across his career

Volume 2 - Frangloband
Live at Triton Club, Paris 2004

Volume 3 - North & South
Co-credited with Scottish drummer Mike Travis (Gil…

Progressive Rock Review: Farpoint-Paint the Dark

Release Date: 17thJune 2014 Label:   10T Records Website
I am no stranger to the band, Farpoint, as they have been featured several times on the radio show after I stumbled across them with the 2003 album, Grace, and more recently with the superb 2011 release, Kindred. Now, landing on The Ancient One’s desk is album No 6, Paint the Dark. Farpoint hail from as far back as 1997, which makes them veterans in comparison with some bands, but relative newcomers compared to others. The music of Farpoint is relatively difficult to pigeonhole, which I tend to view as a “good thing,” mainly because to put a band in a particular category may, in fact, be to the detriment of the spread of the band. They have honed several styles that have influenced them and their music transcends several genres including prog, folk, rock, Celtic, classical and even shades of New Age and bluegrass. (Yes, I did indeed use the term bluegrass!) The band is a 5 piece made up of Kevin Jarvis (guitar, keyboards, mandolin a…

Classic Rock Ensemble Vespers Nine To Release Debut CD 'True Story'

Miami, FL - Much to the excitement of music fans worldwide, classic rock ensemble Vespers Nine will be releasing their eagerly awaited debut CD 'True Story' on September 27, 2014. Vespers Nine, a five member premier classic rock band based out of South Florida, launched in late 2012. Made up of well-seasoned musicians, the band is a versatile, high energy rock band, that also writes and performs it's own original music. Musical influences include Foreigner, Journey, Heart, The Beatles, Queen, Van Halen, Styx, Rush, Metallica and Boston to name only a few.

The entire 'True Story' album was recorded at AfterHours Recording Studio, in North Miami, and all songs were produced by the accomplished and renowned music producer, Hal Batt. The recording of the album spanned over the course of several months, with sessions running sometimes as short as several hours, to well up to 12 to 14 hours straight, for several days in a row, in some cases.

Says bassist Gricel Julie Dosal…

Progressive Rock Review: Strattman-The Lie of the Beholder

Release Date: 17thJune 2014 Label: 10T Records Website
Roy Strattman is a multi-instrumentalist and composer and his debut release, which has just appeared on my desk, is entitled The Lie of the Beholder. I did think that I had come across the name before, and with a little searching, I realized that Roy is the guitarist and joint composer in the prog band, Little Atlas. Little Atlas have issued 4 albums to date and the Ancient One was lucky enough to review the latest, Automatic Day

The record label describes Roy’s music as “a tour-de-force of cutting edge progressive rock, complex tense and shot through with dark and menacing textures alternating with unexpected stabs of beauty and organic calm.” The Lie of the Beholder therefore has a lot to live up to, and I have been tasked with deciding whether or not the album has been successful.

Although The Lie of the Beholder is a solo album, Roy, who plays guitar, keyboards and sings, did have a little help along the way. The album also featu…

UK Punk Legends The Vibrators Get Back To Their Roots With Their Newest Album Punk Mania!

Los Angeles, CA - The Vibrators, one of the only surviving UK punk bands from the class of 1977, make a storming return on fully charged batteries, bringing us Punk Mania - Back To The Roots, set to be released September 16th on Cleopatra Records! 14 killer reminders (plus 3 more on the CD) as to why Knox, Eddie & Co. have built a long, successful career on their razor sharp riffs and rousing hooks!

Check out the infectious rockers “Blackout,” “I Wish I Had A Gun,” and the neo-classic “Love Like Diamonds.” The CD version adds 3 bonus tracks including a rip roaring version of the Flamin’ Groovies classic “Slow Death” and lots more! Punk Mania - Back To The Roots stays true to its name. Expertly produced and mixed by original bassist Pat Collier, and featuring guest guitar on 5 tracks by Nicky Garratt of The UK Subs.

The band’s North American tour kicks off September 11th. Don’t miss them!

Punk Mania CD track list:
1. Retard
2. Blackout
3. Love Like Diamonds
4. No Sweat
5. Bleed To Death
6. …

Instrumental Ambient Rock/Soundtrack Review: Kim Halliday-Halflight

Release Date: November 11, 2014 Label: Ravello Records Website
The first time I heard Kim Halliday’s Halflght it got my attention. Kim is a multi-talented artist covering many different industries and his partner Martin Lister was as equally talented. Unfortunately Kim lost his longtime friend and collaborator in May this year. 

Kim plays guitars, keys, and also provides words, contributes loops, programing and arrangements. Martin did all of the same except he did not provide words, however he did play the drums. They both cover an immense amount of ground in one recording. What I found so pleasing is how they put it all together.

My son walked in while I was playing the CD and said “This sounds like movie music,” and I replied it is! To me actually it is more than that. The blend of guitars, keyboards, loops and programming with just enough percussion makes for a great listen. At times I could understand the words and others I couldn’t but that did not take away anything from my experien…

Virgil Guitars Makes Unprecedented Leap On Kickstarter

Tampa, FL - An artist and guitarist since the 1970's, Virgil Mandanici set out to make guitars that would be exceptional in tone and playability first and foremost. After 35 years of playing guitar, he decided it was time to craft guitars that would feel, play and look better than anything anyone has ever played before – thus Virgil Guitars was born! As a master craftsman, Virgil has drawn his building career from several luthiers over the past several years to make these incredible guitars. The inlay and appointments on his guitars are simply a testament to his attention to detail.

Says Virgil, “After playing guitar for over 35 years, I knew what I was looking for in tone and how a neck should feel and had been willing to go to any length to achieve the 'perfect' guitar fit for myself, and ironically, other players. On certain models, they come with a DVD that shows the birth of my guitars starting out with a chunk of wood all the way to a music video – I do every step of …

Blues Rock Review: Eric Clapton and Friends-The Breeze-An Appreciation of J.J. Cale

Release Date: July 29, 2014 Label: Bushbranch Surfdog Website
When it comes to guitarist, it is hard to do better than Eric Clapton.Some might say there is no one better.The former member of influential bands such as The Yardbirds and Cream, Clapton has come together with other music stars to pay tribute to a fallen friend.J.J. Cale was a singer and song writer, who was one of the founders and main driving force behind what is known as the Tulsa sound, a mix of jazz, blues, rock, and country.His songs have been covered by the likes of Eric Clapton, Jerry Garcia, Phish, John Mayer, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Johnny Cash.
A year after he died of heart failure in 2013 at the age of 74, Eric Clapton gathered other music greats to pay their respects by covering Cale’s songs.Joining Clapton on this album are Tom Petty, Mark Knoplfer, Don White, John Mayer, Derek Trucks, and Willie Nelson.
Eric Clapton takes the reigns solo on the first track. “Call Me the Breeze” is not only the perfect song to open th…

Heavy Metal Review: Judas Priest-Redeemer of Souls

Release Date: July 8, 2014 Label: Epic Website
It’s hard to imagine that 6 years has passed since Judas Priest released their double album Nostradamus. Some fans found that a tough one to swallow because they tried something different. I applauded it and thought it was a true masterpiece. Then K.K. Downing retired and we thought what now? Then another live album arrived titled A Touch of Evil a year later introducing their new guitarist Richie Faulkner. Again I thought this was another good move for the band to keep things rolling and Faulkner seemed to be a good fit. Once Faulkner got his chops down and did some touring with the band it was time to step back into the studio to see how that worked without Downing for the first time.

So now we have Redeemer of Souls which by all accounts is a return to form and I could not agree more. There are three editions of this release available, the regular one CD package, the deluxe two CD set and the double vinyl LP version. I decided, as I always…

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club's Robert Levon Been Pays Tribute To Late Father's Legendary Band The Call!

Los Angeles, CA – Much to the excitement of music fans worldwide, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club's Robert Levon Been pays tribute to his late father, Michael Been, with an unforgettable live performance fronting his father's legendary band The Call in the upcoming live DVD / CD 'The Call Live Tribute With Robert Levon Been' (available September 2nd, 2014 via Label Records/Lightyear/Caroline).

"It's difficult to sum up what this show meant to me, but it was also just such a natural primal reaction to wanting to share the music and the joy we felt playing these songs together with more than just the 4 of us. The very first time i played with Scott, Dickie, and Jim in rehearsal together there was such an overwhelming love for the songs and the spirit that it couldn't just end there. We had to take it as far as we could go, to create an echo that would carry us all.' - Robert Levon Been

“What a joy it has been to reconnect with the band and the fans. I don'…

“Sin City - A Dame To Kill For” Original Motion Picture Soundtrack To Be Released

Camarillo, CA - Movie aficionados and soundtrack buffs are ecstatic with the release of “Sin City - A Dame to Kill For” Original Motion Picture Soundtrack on CD by Marshall Blonstein's Morada Music. “Sin City - A Dame To Kill For” is the highly anticipated sequel to the 2005 international smash, “Sin City”. “Sin City” grossed 74 million dollars in the U.S. and 158 million dollars worldwide. The new film is directed by Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller and follows the neo-noir crime action that made “Sin City” a great success.

The soundtrack is produced, composed and performed by Robert Rodriguez and Carl Thiel with a special Bonus track titled “Skin City” with vocals by Aerosmith's Steven Tyler.

The film stars Jessica Alba, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Bruce Willis, Mickey Rourke, Ray Liotta, Josh Brolin, Powers Boothe, Rosario Dawson, Stacy Keach, Lady GaGa, Juno Temple, Crystal McCahill and Eva Green among others.

The CD booklet contains a stunning selection of movie stills and charac…

DREAM THEATER to Release “Breaking the Fourth Wall” DVD on September 30

By on August 21, 2014@ProgSphere Grammy-nominated progressive metal titans–have announced the release of Breaking The Fourth Wall (Live From The Boston Opera House), a live Blu-Ray / DVD set of the band’s one-of-a-kind performance from the Boston Opera House on March 25, 2014. Produced by the band’s own John Petrucci, filmed and directed by Pierre and François Lamoureux, and mixed and mastered by Richard ChyckiBreaking The Fourth Wall (Live From The Boston Opera House) is over 2 hours in length, capturing the special evening, which featured guest performances from The Berklee College of Music Orchestra and Choir. Breaking The Fourth Wall (Live From The Boston Opera House) arrives September 30th.
The collection will be available in multiple configurations including Blu-Ray, a 2 DVD set, and a webstore deluxe exclusive Blu-Ray/3 CD set with poster, all currently available for pre-order via the Roadrunner Records webstore. Furthermore, Dream Theater have premiered a …