All posts by Angel Romero

Angel Romero has been writing about progressive music and world music for many years. Publications include Eurock (USA), Marquee (Japan), and Nuevas Músicas (Spain). He founded the websites progressiverockcentral.com and worldmusiccentral.org. Angel also produced Musica NA, a music show for TVE (Spain) featuring fusion, avant-garde, world music, new age and electronic artists.

Metamorphic Electronic Dreams

Dan Pound – Dreams That Take You (Pound Sounds, 2017)

Electronic music artist Dan Pound takes the listener into the subconscious mind. Dreams That Take You is a sonic voyage that features hypnotic floating synths, mysterious ambient soundscapes, trance-like beats, and shamanic vocals.

The primary musical instrument in this recording is a synthesizer called Evolver, designed by Dave Smith. Dan Pound found this synth especially effective as he developed his dream atmospheres.

Dreams That Take You is a deeply satisfying ambient electronic music album.

Buy Dreams That Take You

Riveting Pelagos

Pelagos – Revolve (Svart Records, 2018)

Pelagos is a fantastic band from southwestern Finland, whose members evolved and progressed from heavy metal towards mesmerizing electronic sounds.

The band plays a mix of absorbing psychedelic space rock, dreamy harmonies,processed vocals, and forward looking trippy electronica.

The highlights of the album are the spellbinding Aphrodite’s Shore, Muted Stars and the fabulous closing track Embryo.

Revolve will be available in June. You can preorder here: www.svartrecords.com/product/revolve-4/#

Fernando Perdomo’s Remarkably Expressive Guitars

Fernando Perdomo – Out To Sea (Forward Motion Records, 2018)

Out To Sea is the debut instrumental progressive rock album by multi-instrumentalist and composer Fernando Perdomo, who is best known as guitarist and bassist of the Dave Kerzner Band.

Perdomo is deeply influenced by the pioneering progressive rock bands of the 1970s, especially guitarists such as Steve Hackett (Genesis), Peter Banks (Yes), Steve Howe (Yes), and Jan Akkerman (Focus).

The album features tributes to various musical heroes, including Peter Banks, Focus, John Wetton, Nektar, and Curved Air. It’s a set of mini progressive rock and psychedelic epics that feature stellar electric and acoustic guitar work enriched with symphonic keyboards and drums. However, there is one gorgeous long suite titled Dreaming in Stereo Suite that strolls with ease and grace between memorable laid back and up tempo passages.

On Out to Sea, Perdomo uses 11 different types of guitars that appear on the CD booklet.

Fernando is individually donating $1 for every copy of the album sold to Macmillan Caring Locally, a charity preferred by Lisa Wetton for donations from Fernando’s release of his “Starless” cover in honor of John Wetton. The “Starless” cover is the bonus track on the Cherry Red version of the album “Out To Sea”.

Buy Out To Sea

Multiple Stunning Guitar Emotions in 27 Faces of a Broken Heart

Ramin Partovi – 27 Faces of a Broken Heart (Ramin Partovi, 2018)

The album 27 Faces of a Broken Heart features an impressive collection of guitarists. All the tracks are basically variations of the same song, composed by American guitarist and airline pilot Ramin Partovi. He created this musical piece during a very difficult time of his life and invited some of the finest guitarists in the rock and fusion scene to perform and record variations of this song.

Musically, the album has strong fusion, rock, progressive and blues elements and each version features spectacular guitar solos and a formidable rhythm section, plus a great bass solo.

The core band includes Ramin Partovi on guitars, Carl Verheyen on guitars, Simon Phillips on drums and Jimmy Johnson on bass. The guests include famous guitar players as well as lesser known players who are nonetheless highly skilled and equally good.

27 Faces of a Broken Heart opens with the original track by Ramin Partovi and then it’s followed by the multiple variations featuring the following guitarists: Yussi Wenger, Brent Mason, Jinshi Ozaki, Tom Kolb, Jon Reshard, Scott Henderson, Andy Becht, Ervin Toucet, Ernesto Homeyer, Erick Walls, Doug Rappoport, Masta Edwards, Carl Verheyen, McCoy Mason, Jeffery Marshall, Robin Siedschlag, Brent Mason’s second version, Brad Bailey, Oz Noy, Jeff Richman, Mike Stern, Gabriel Forsman, Mark Lettieri , Dean Brown, and Giuseppe Vasapolli.

 

 

 

27 Faces of a Broken Heart is a fascinating concept album showcasing the remarkable talent of Ramin Partovi, his friends and musical heroes.

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Entrancing Electronics by Broekhuis Keller & Schönwälder

Broekhuis Keller & Schönwälder – Yellow (Manikin Records, 2017)

Mario Schönwälder, Detlef Keller and Bas Broekhuis, the current masters of the Berlin School of electronic music, delight the listener with another gem, Yellow. The album showcases their talent at developing fluctuating, multilayered electronic sequences, enriched by mesmerizing atmospheres and oboe-like synth melodies.

The three musicians use a combination of classic analog synthesizers and digital synths as well. It’s modernized Berlin-style electronic music influenced by early Tangerine Dream and Michael Hoenig.

The lineup on the album includes Bas Broekhuis on analog and digital synthesizers, sequencer, drums and percussion; Detlef Keller on analog and virtual analog synthesizer and sequencer; and Mario Schönwälder on analog and virtual analog synthesizer, computer and sequencer.

Yellow is a spellbinding recording of modern progressive electronic music by one of the most formidable acts in the genre.

Buy the album from manikinrecords.bandcamp.com/album/yellow

Erik Wøllo Releases Threshold Point

Norwegian electronic music sound-crafter Erik Wøllo has released his 23rd album, titled Threshold Point.

Wøllo says about the recording, “For me, Threshold Point is a musical idea of an actual transformation: to cross a threshold, going from one form to another… into a change. Unfolding over time, gradually bridging and leading into new states or places. In my music, patterns and evolution are basic elements, always retaining an emotional connection with the melodies and the textures.”

Buy Threshold Point

The Changeable Guitars of Paweł Ignatowicz

Paweł Ignatowicz – Here and Now

Paweł Ignatowicz – Here and Now (Mother of Invention Records, 2017)

Here and Now is the new solo album by Paweł Ignatowicz, a Polish guitarist currently living in New York. Paweł Ignatowicz various forms of guitars, including acoustic, electric, guitar syntheziser and electric sitar.

The material on Here and Now consists of melodic, easy to listen jazz instrumentals with smooth jazz and fusion influences plus a little Indian and Latin music as well. The guitar is highlighted throughout the album, creating fascinating sounds, even though Ignatowicz’s stick’s to conventional melodies.

The lineup on Here and Now includes Paweł Ignatowicz on guitars, guitar synth and electric sitar; Julian Shore on piano, keyboards; Edward Perez on bass; Jonathan Singer on tabla; and Ferenc Nemeth on drums.

Electronic Music Wizard Steve Roach to Receive Lifetime Achievement Award

American electronic music trailblazer Steve Roach will be honored with a Receive Lifetime Achievement Award on May 12, 2018 at the 14th Annual Zone Music Reporter (ZMR) Awards and Concert at Loyola University’s Roussel Hall in New Orleans. Steve Roach’s album Spiral Revelation is also nominated in the ZMR Awards’ “Best Electronic Album” category.

Steve Roach is a forerunner in the evolution of ambient and tribal world music-rooted electronic music. He’s an exceptionally productive synthesist with a discography of over 170 albums. Following his 1982 debut, essential recordings include Structures from Silence, Dreamtime Return and 2017’s Grammy-nominated Spiral Revelation.

More information about the awards at www.zonemusicreporter.com/admin/Awards_welcome.asp

Remixed Fish Out Of Water

Chris Squire – Fish Out Of Water (Esoteric, 2018)

The original Fish Out Of Water album by Yes’ bassist Chris Squire was released in 1975. This is the 2018 remastered edition available as a 2-CD set and also as a limited boxed set.

Musically, the album has a strong Yes feel. It features Patrick Moraz, who was Yes’ keyboardist at the time, and the versatile Yes drummer Bill Bruford. It’s a master class in progressive rock bass playing. Chris Squire was one of the finest progressive rock bassists and he delivers outstanding bass lines throughout the album.

In addition to prog rock musicians, Fish Out of Water also features a symphonic orchestra that enriches the album considerably. Chris Squire provided the lead and backing vocals. The backing vocals will sound very familiar to Yes fans. Squire’s lead vocals, on the other side, were more pop-oriented than Jon Anderson’s so there is an interesting clash of influences.

Patrick Moraz delivered an outstanding set of performances on electric organ and synths. The album also features other progressive rock heavy weights: Caravan’s Jimmy Hastings on flute and King Crimson’s Mel Collins on saxophone. Pianist Andrew Pryce Jackman conducted the orchestra. And Barry Rose added a masterful performance on pipe organ.

The instrumental sections, which are numerous, are outstanding. The two CD set includes the original recording a superb new mix by Jakko Jakszyk that brings forward the remarkable bass work.

The deluxe boxed set includes 2CDs, 2DVDs, 1LP and 2×7-inch singles.

Chris Squire – Fish Out Of Water boxed set

 

Fish Out Of Water showcases the talent of an influential progressive rock musician at his best, focusing on the bass a lead instrument.

Buy Fish Out Of Water

Formidable Multifaceted Alan Simon

Alan Simon – Songwriter (Babaika Productions/The Right Honourable Recording Company, 2017)

Songwriter is a compilation of musical works by French musician and composer Alan Simon now available on as 2 CDs (previously it was available on vinyl only). The anthology includes material from rock operas and other recordings made from 1995 to 2017.

Alan Simon is the creator of the highly successful Excalibur: The Celtic Rock Opera. He’s deeply influenced by Celtic, world and symphonic music, folk and progressive rock as well. Songwriter represents a wide range of genres, from majestic cinematic orchestral pieces to evocative Celtic music, exotic world music and progressive rock elements as well.

The compendium includes guest appearances by well-known artists from various backgrounds: members of Supertramp, Jon Anderson of Yes, Christian Décamps of legendary French progressive rock band Ange, Spanish bagpipe master Carlos Núñez, Midnight Oil, Alan Parsons, Fairport Convention, Moya Brennan, John Wetton, Justin Hayward, Maddy Prior, Billy Preston, Roberto Tiranti, Martin Barre, Les Holroyd, Mick Fleetwood and Zucchero.

Buy Songwriter