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Showing posts from March, 2016

Instrumental New Age Review: John Fluker-11:11

Release Date: May 1, 2016 Label: Retribution Records Website

Composer, musician and vocalist, are a few of the titles that the multitalented John Fluker holds. He has backed folks like Beyoncé, Dionne Warwick, Mavis Staples, John Legend, Boyz II Men, etc. The list goes on and on. So to say that the man is a seasoned artist is putting it mildly.

With the release of 11:11 he showcases his diversity with musical styles using the piano as the foundation where every track finds its path through careful construction. From the colorful atmospheric opener “Awaken,” with classically influenced piano strokes and ambient textured keyboards, the music gives you a wakeup call to this immense talent and pulls you into another world. The theme here is indicative of the title of course so you can focus on that one meaning, look at the track titles then take it from there.

“Artificial Time” is a gorgeous soundscape taking the bounty of that classical influence then pushing the envelope to make it an instru…

IZZ Guitarist Paul Bremner Set to Release New Studio Album "The Witness"

New York, NY – IZZ guitarist, Paul Bremner’s new studio album, The Witness, is scheduled for release on April 26, 2016. IZZ fans have grown to associate Paul’s distinctive and melodic guitar playing with the “IZZ Sound”. Paul has earned the respect of the progressive rock community by writing such memorable songs as “Light From Your Eyes”, “Illuminata” and co-writing the IZZ classics “Late Night Salvation” and “Can’t Feel the Earth, Part II,” among many others. Paul’s new studio album of 10 songs showcases both his dynamic guitar playing and his penchant for writing emotional music and lyrics.

“I am thrilled to release this collection of songs” says Bremner. “They feature a wide range of moods and emotions and I think IZZ fans will find them intriguing and satisfying.”

The first track of the album “From Here I Can See the Horizon” features a powerful and exciting lead vocal performance from Anmarie Byrnes while the emotionally charged “Warm” spotlights a hauntingly beautiful lead voc…

Concert Review: Kansas at The Colonial Theater

Kansas In Concert At The Colonial Theater UCP Life Without Limits Benefit Pittsfield, Massachusetts March 26, 2016
Phil Ehart (drums), Richard Williams (guitar), Ronnie Platt (vocals, keyboards), Billy Greer (bass, vocals), David Manion (keyboards, vocals) and David Ragsdale (violin, guitar, vocals) are Kansas.

The show benefited United Cerebral Palsy of Berkshire County. The “Life Without Limits” concert replaces UCP’s annual fundraising telethon, which ended last year after more than five decades.

Ms. Brittany Dorwin (pictured here) whom I have known since she was a baby was crowned the Massachusetts Jr. Miss Amazing 2016. She will move on to the Nationals in Chicago very soon. If you are interested in sponsoring her trip to Chicago on June 30TH make your donation here

Brittany certainly fits the description of amazing. I have never looked at her as someone with a disability; she is an intelligent, funny, warm, and…

Concert Review: John Mayall At The Colonial Theater

John Mayall In Concert At The Colonial Theater Pittsfield, Massachusetts March 24, 2016
The Godfather of The British Blues made an appearance last night in The Berkshires. Yes indeed, Mr. John Mayall, the living legend, all 83 years of him performed on stage with his band at the fantastic Colonial Theater. I just knew going into this experience it was going to be very special and it most certainly was.
Mayall and his Bluesbreakers share a lot of music history with world renowned artists. Many got their start with him such as Eric Clapton and Mick Taylor, and those are a just a few who have served their apprenticeship under the tutelage of Mayall. He has been enjoying a successful solo career since the days of the Bluesbreakers and is still carrying the torch for the blues.
When I first arrived at the venue John was sitting at his merchandise table selling CDs and signing autographs. I was amazed to see this going on and thought highly of him that he would make him…

Curved Air Legend Darryl Way Releases New Prog Album "Myths, Legends and Tales" - OUT NOW!

London, UK - Darryl Way is the co-founder of CURVED AIR, a trail blazing rock violinist and composer. “Myths, Legends and Tales” is Way's latest PROG album which takes its inspiration from some of the mythologies (both ancient and present day) which have inspired him.

“Myths, Legends and Tales” is a mixture of instrumental Symphonic Rock and Songs. The inspiration for the instrumental pieces comes from the mystical world of Greek Mythology, whereas the songs are a mixture of observations about the world we live in and stories and events that have been inspirational.

“As a rock violinist I have always been searching for that elusive sound, turn of phrase and means of expression that would give the electric violin a legitimate voice in the idiom of rock music. With this album, I feel that I have come closer than ever before to achieving this goal. 'Myths, Legends and Tales' is another attempt by me to fly the flag for 'Prog Rock'. I've raised the flag up the mast…

New Age/World Review: Logical Drift - Pacific Journey

Release Date: February 25, 2016 Label: NYCMusic Website
John Matarazzo is Logical Drift and his album Pacific Journey is a tribute to the beautiful islands of the South Pacific Ocean.

There is nothing like good instrumental music to create scenery for your mind’s eye to put you at peace and center you. It always comes to me at the right time and makes me feel more connected to our world.

This Pacific Journey certainly has the ability to transport you to another place and time. The music you will find on this aural journey is as diverse and colorful as the flora and fauna you will find in the islands that are the subject matter. For my ears I liken this kind of music to a musical story and I allow my heart and soul to be an open book to its pages. It is my objective to convey the premise of this recording through a few choice tracks and discuss whether or not it delivers what it promises in reference to the title and the CD cover.

“Himalayan Heights” is part of the travels you take while list…

Todd Rundgren's BOX O'TODD Limited Edition Live Box Set To Be Released

Los Angeles - Purple Pyramid records will be releasing a special limited edition collector's box titled BOX O'TODD featuring previously unreleased live in-studio recordings from the early '70s by legendary guitarist/songwriter/producer, Todd Rundgren! All shows were originally broadcast on the radio at the time.

This unique box features both stripped down solo performances by Rundgren as well as full band recordings with The Hello People, and includes some of Todd's most well-known songs including “Hello, It's Me,” “I Saw The Light,” “It Wouldn't Have Made Any Difference” and many more!

In addition to three full-length CDs, the box set comes with a 20-page booklet featuring a full set of insightful liner notes by Dave Thompson and full color photos plus a signature guitar pick, 3 collectible pins, and a backstage pass!

Track List:

DISC 1 - Live From Philadelphia 1971 with the Hello People (originally broadcast on WMMR-FM)
1. Banter & Soundcheck
2. Believe I…

Australian Prog Artist Ben Craven To Release Third Album "Last Chance To Hear" Featuring Guest Contributions By William Shatner and Billy Sherwood

“Seriously well-distilled and blended” - Van Dyke Parks

Brisbane, Australia – Australian cinematic progressive-rock singer-songwriter Ben Craven is releasing his highly anticipated third album “Last Chance To Hear”. The new release features guest contributions by YES legend Billy Sherwood and iconic actor William Shatner (yes, Capt. Kirk himself!!!). A new single titled “The Remarkable Man” is available for immediate download when pre-ordering the album. It's an imaginary theme song from a spy thriller movie franchise.

Says Ben, “ 'Last Chance To Hear' is loosely inspired by the end of the music industry as we knew it. There’s never been a time when so much new music was being made by so many people and being listened to by so few people. The concept of paying for new music is now alien to a lot of the audience. Digital downloads have made physical media virtually obsolete. Streaming services mean that anybody making new music is now competing with the whole history of rec…

Contemporary Progressive Rock Review: Sebas Honing-The Big Shift

Release Date: 24th January 2016 Label: Freia Music Website
Sebas Honing is a multi-instrumentalist who hails from The Netherlands. Sebas is also a composer and producer, as well as being known for his guitar work in Equisa (prog metal) and 5150, a Van Halen tribute band. Together with his partner, Petra, he also fronts the acoustic duo, Mr. and Mrs. Honey. With all this going on, it makes you wonder where he finds the time to release solo material, with his latest offering being The Big Shift.

This release follows on from Songs of Oceans and Seas, a concept album relating to water, and From Middle to East, another concept album tracing a journey from Turkey, through India and on to Indonesia. The former follows a musical journey through rock/pop to prog rock/metal with the latter combining prog rock/metal with traditional music from the countries the journey passed through.

The band formed to record The Big Shift, also led to the formation of a live band which will have debuted on the 24th…

Rock/Metal Review: Bang-Mother/Bow to the King

Release Date: 1971/1972 Label: Capitol Records Website Every era has its superstars, the acts and bands that shine brighter than the rest of the pack.They top the charts, play to sold-out crowds, and amass millions in record sales. They influence the next generations of musicians and their songs and go on to become a staple of pop-culture, while sounding as good now as they did decades ago when they were first released.Then there are the bands that get lost in the shuffle.They have plenty of talent, and maybe a hit song or two, but they were never able to make it to the next level for whatever reason.Bang is one such band.
Formed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania not long after Woodstock in 1969 by two high school friends, Frank Glicken (guitar, vocals) and Frank Ferrara (bass, lead vocals), they were joined by Tony Diorio (drums) after he answered their ad in a newspaper.One of the earliest American bands to venture into the heavy metal genre, there were hopes of them being the American ans…

Jazz Review: Pablo Embon-The World Within

Release Date: March 18, 2016
Label: Independent

Pablo Embon is a remarkably talented artist. He has released his 15th album titled The World Within. The album was performed, recorded, mixed and produced by Embon between June 2015 and February 2016 in Israel. Amongst the 13 tracks there is a multitude of jazz stylings.

As a listener this is sheer delight to hear such talent and diversity on display. As an individual with the role of reviewing said music it is quite an undertaking. I mean that as the sincerest form of flattery by the way.

The influences Pablo has are many and 99% of them are artists I love so it is no wonder I found it easy to fall into this music like it was an old friend. Jazz is very complex music, a true art form that deserves respect and the full attention of a listener. Lord knows if you have a lapse in your listening you are bound to miss something prolific or even a subtle nuance that changes the entire direction of a song.

It is hard to choose a place to sta…

AndersonPonty Band Feat. Music Icons Jon Anderson & Jean Luc Ponty To Tour North America Spring 2016

Los Angeles – In support of their critically acclaimed CD/DVD release “Better Late Than Never”, the AndersonPonty Band, featuring music icons Jon Anderson and Jean Luc Ponty, will be touring North America in Spring 2016! The band played a series of successful US dates in the Fall of 2015 and are excited to bring their music to the fans once again.

AndersonPonty Band tour dates:

Apr 28 - Fox Tucson Theatre - Tucson, AZ TICKETS
Apr 30 - The Canyon Theater - Agoura Hills, CA TICKETS
May 01 - The Grove of Anaheim - Anaheim, CA TICKETS
May 04 - Boulder Theater - Boulder, CO TICKETS
May 06 - Majestic Theatre - Dallas, TX TICKETS
May 07 - One World Theatre - Austin, TX TICKETS
May 10 - Ames Center – Burnsville, MN TICKETS
May 11 - The Arcada Theatre - St. Charles, IL TICKETS
May 13 - The Pageant - St. Louis, MO TICKETS
May 14 - Barrymore Theatre - Madison, WI TICKETS
May 17 - Riviera Theatre - N. Tonawanda, NY TICKETS
May 18 - Tarrytown Music Hall - Tarrytown, NY TICKETS
May 20 - Cabot Perfo…