New England Art (Progressive) Rock Society (NewEARS) announced that influential British progressive rock group Van Der Graaf Generator will be playing at Regent Theatre in Arlington (Boston) on June 28th 2012.
The current Van Der Graaf Generator line-up includes three members of the band’s classic line-up Peter Hammill on guitar, keyboards and vocals, Hugh Banton on organ, bass pedals and bass guitar; and Guy Evans on drums.
Farfest is a new progressive rock festival that will focus on 1970s and contemporary 70s-sounding progressive rock bands. The first Farfest will take place at the Grand Opera House in Wilmington, Delaware on October 4th – 7th, 2012.
The goal of Farfest is to showcase legendary 1970s progressive rock bands that a lot of music fans only dreamed of ever seeing live and bring them all together in one festival. “Since the 70’s era of performing musicians will soon be drawing to a close the time is now for such an event so we offer you this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see these classic bands perform,” said Greg Walker, one of the organizers of the festival.
The 7th edition of the Night of the Prog festival is set to take place on July 7th and 8th 2012. The festival includes a mix of progressive rock, AOR and heavy metal bands (prog metal). Night of the Prog is staged at Loreley (Germany), a UNESCO world heritage site, which has one of the most outstanding open air amphitheaters in Europe, high above the river Rhine.
The line-up this year includes Frequency Drift, Enochian Theory, Hasse Fröberg & The Musical Companion, Airbag, Lazuli, Sylvan, Haken, The Flower Kings, Arena, Spock´s Beard, Steve Hackett, Saga and Katatonia. 12 of 13 bands are confirmed.
The highlights of the past 6 years have been the appearances of Eloy, Fish, Asia, Jethro Tull, Roger Hodgson, Steve Hackett, Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze, and Marillion.
“The tradition to supply a stage for young and emergent bands is one of our major tasks,” says Winfried Völklein of WiV Entertainment GmbH. “To give them the chance to play in front of thousands of people will definitely help to create a career.”
Ian Anderson, known throughout the world as the flute and voice behind the legendary folk-rooted progressive rock band Jethro Tull, will perform at the Durham Performing Arts Center, DPAC, North Carolina, on September 29, 2012.
In April, Anderson will release Thick as a Brick 2, a newly-recorded sequel to Jethro Tull’s seminal 1972 album Thick as a Brick, followed by a solo tour that will feature him performing both the original album and its new sequel back-to-back live in their entirety.
Jethro Tull’s progressive rock era peaked with 1972’s Thick As A Brick, a 45-minute continuous piece of music charting the difficulties of a child growing up and confronting a frightening and unfair world. The album was a worldwide success, including a Number 1 spot on the Billboard chart.
Forty years later, Ian’s new sequel has very deliberately echoed the feel of the 1972 album by using many of the same instruments, including a lot of acoustic guitar and Hammond organ, and to a large extent recording the continuous 53-minute piece of music with the band all playing live together. In Ian’s words: “The theme of this anniversary ‘part two’ album is to examine the possible different paths that the precocious young schoolboy, Gerald Bostock, might have taken later in life.”
Tickets are available at:
Online at DPACnc.com
DPAC Ticket Center: 919.680.2787, 123 Vivian Street, Durham, NC
Ticketmaster.com / Ticketmaster Charge by phone at 800.745.3000
Ticketmaster outlets including Crabtree Valley Mall
CalProg has announced the only show of the epic rock opera by the late Kevin Gilbert called “The Shaming of the True”. This full-scale theatrical production is being directed by Mark Hornsby (Rewiring Genesis) and Nick D’Virgilio (former Spock’s Beard ) who also is featured in the starring role as Johnny Virgil. The band is comprised of musicians that all performed with Kevin at some point in his career. They are:
Stan Cotey – Guitar (Giraffe) Dave Kerzner – Keys (Thud) Paul Ill – Bass (Kaviar) Brian MacLeod – Drums – (Toy Matinee, Tuesday Night Music Club, Thud, Shaming, Kaviar)
Plus special surprise guests
“Shaming” was a project that Kevin worked on off and on for years throughout his career. Nick D’Virgilio who had been intimately involved in many aspects of the project decided to finish it for him following his untimely tragic passing, and the completed product was this brilliant piece of work. It was performed live only once in 2002 at ProgWest. It had been recorded for a live release, but due to glitches in the recording it was never released. This time it will be recorded digitally for a DVD/CD production.
Shaming of the True Live
Saturday June 2, 2012 – 8:00pm
The Shannon Center for the Performing Arts at Whittier College (seats 400)
Tickets on sale now only at http://www.calprog.com (do not call the theater)
The Local have teamed up with Sleepsound Agency to present innovative modern electronic and acoustic music from England’s shores and a little bit further abroad on April 14. The result is The Dalston Residency, a multi-venue musical showcase spread over a weekend.
The weekend begins with a full length performance of Richard Knox and Frederic D Oberland’s “The Rustle of the Stars” at The Vortex Jazz Bar, where they will be joined by Angela Chan & Lidwine de Royer. 450 km from the arctic circle, ’The Rustle of the Stars’ is a phenomenon of austere beauty, a barely audible noise that occurs when the draught from human breath causes multiple collisions among the ice micro-crystals in the air. Also joining them for the evening will be the wonderful Clem Leek.
“On Sunday night, we have Jasper TX performing for us at Café Oto. Jasper TX is the musical moniker of Sweden’s Dag Rosenqvist,” says the press release. Using electric and acoustic guitar, piano, pump organ, melodica, glockenspiel, voice and various other instruments as a foundation for his compositions, Dag has managed to create his own musical universe. Elements of post rock, drone, improvisation, noise and lo-fi aesthetics are all filtered through a skewed melodic pop sensibility, often resulting in something quite unique. Also joining him will be Matthew Collings, and Ten.
April 14, 2012 19:00
Tickets for the whole weekend are £12 in advance.
Tickets for individual shows are £7 in advance / or £10 on the door.
Venue: Cafe OTO, 18-22 Ashwin Street, Hackney, London, E8 3DL
AEG Live has announced that legendary prog rock singer and flutist Ian Anderson and his band will be performing live at Temple Buell Theatre in Denver (Colorado) on Tuesday, October 23, 2012.
In the early 1970s progressive rock bands like Yes, Genesis, ELP, Pink Floyd, Gentle Giant and King Crimson were pushing musical boundaries, creating some of the best music made in the decade. Jethro Tull was part of this exciting music scene.
Jethro Tull’s brief ‘prog rock’ era peaked with 1972’s Thick As A Brick, a 45-minute continuous piece of music charting the difficulties of a child growing up and confronting a frightening and unfair world. The album was encased in a spoof local newspaper The St Cleve Chronicle, with a headline story that a precocious schoolboy called Gerald Bostock had been disqualified from a poetry competition because of the inappropriate nature of his epic poem, which Tull then allegedly used as the album’s lyrics.
Ian explains that the idea stemmed from the critics’ descriptions of 1971’s Aqualung as a `concept album’, even though it was just a bunch of songs a few of which had common themes. “In the light of the Aqualung reviews I deliberately set out to do a concept album that would in essence be a bit of a parody of other people’s concept albums and grandiose progressive rock adventures. I thought let’s take this slightly arrogant and pompous way of writing and presenting music to an extreme, with the fiction of a then 10-year old boy having written the lyrics. Of course it’s preposterous and really quite silly, but it was the era of Monty Python, when that sort of surreal British humor was quite well embedded in the British psyche.”
The album was a world-wide success, including a No 1 place on the American Billboard chart, and excerpts from the piece have regularly featured in Jethro Tull and Ian Anderson live shows. But Ian had steadily resisted record company suggestions that he write a follow-up.
The arrival of punk rock cast a shadow over a style of music that pop critics interested in ephemeral fads never cared for. To these critics, progressive rock became somewhat derogatory. But, Ian explains, “To me, anything is progressive if you are trying to take things on into a slightly new dimension, and draw upon different influences and push them into something that fits your own sense of inventiveness and your own career progression. So `progressive rock’ is a fine title.”
It was not until a chance encounter in 2010 with old friend Derek Shulman of Gentle Giant, who nagged him to consider a 40th anniversary sequel, that Ian gave it some serious thought – and surprised himself by not dismissing it out of hand this time. He had noticed that in recent years his audiences had been changing. “It wasn’t just old codgers, it was kind of a mix between old codgers and young codgers. It really struck me that there was this new wave of interest from youngsters who want something that is an alternative and antidote to the X-Factor and the very repetitive rock music that does tend to be the stuff of today. So I began to feel that it was not quite as undignified as I had earlier supposed to be doing something that was more in that kind of progressive vein.”
In February 2011 Ian spent a couple of days sketching out some ideas. “It was predicated on the idea of what might have befallen Gerald Bostock, this precocious child, where would he have headed in life? And the more I started thinking about that the more I thought that there were so many pivotal moments in my own childhood where, often quite by chance, I might have gone in one direction or in some completely opposite direction. I could have been anything from a soldier or a sailor or an astronaut to a thespian or a silviculturist – although when I left school I actually tried first to join the police force and then to be a journalist on the local newspaper, before music took over while I was at art college.
“So I imagined Gerald Bostock as this 10-year old kid entering into puberty who, by the look of the young male model who was photographed in 1972 as the notional Gerald Bostock, was obviously a rather swottish schoolboy who probably wasn’t very popular at school and probably wasn’t very good at sports. What sort of opportunities would he have had, who would he have been, what would he have been led towards? I started to write a number of scenarios, including a piece looking at his possible early life immediately post-puberty, and then another piece later on for each of these characters that Gerald might have become, leading through to adulthood. Then in the latter part of the album I drew all these things back into a common kismet-karma kind of future where, in spite of all these chance interventions, there is maybe some element of fate and we all end up where we were going to end up anyway, in spite of the fact that we may have taken some radically different roads along the way.”
From that loose concept emerged Thick As A Brick 2. Recorded in November 2011 with Florian Opahle (guitar), John O’Hara (keyboards), David Goodier (bass) and Scott Hammond (drums), musically Ian has very deliberately echoed the feel of the 1972 album by using many of the same instruments, including a lot of acoustic guitar and lashings of Hammond organ, and to a large extent recording it with the band all playing live together, with the minimum of overdubs and no use of limiters and noise gates and other tricks of the trade, leaving engineer Steven Wilson (of Porcupine Tree) to tweak things himself. And, while there are ID points to allow separate tracks to be downloaded from iTunes, it is a continuous 53-minute piece of music with recurring musical themes.
Also echoing the 1972 album, and the St Cleve Chronicle newspaper sleeve, the 2012 album is housed in a mock-up of a local news website www.StCleve.com, which Ian designed himself in a deliberately not-too-professional pastiche of community websites (and which will be accessible online, with an area where fans can add their own spoof local news stories). “It’s light-hearted most of the way through StCleve.com, with lots of fairly vulgar schoolboy smutty stuff, but there are also some serious bits and things that are quite observational of the parochial home counties way of life. There will be some familiar characters like Max Quad, and Angela de Groot who runs a fitness center now. And there will also be various people known to me and known to the world, although their names are slightly twisted around. But you’ll know who they are….” And the 18-month world tour, starting in the UK on April 14th, will also nod to 40 years ago and what Ian describes as the “amateur dramatics village hall” 1972 stage show with a new theatrical presentation involving videos and character actors.
“Unlike the original 1972 Thick As A Brick, the mood of the album is not really a spoof,” says Ian. “It’s not a funny thing; some of it is quite heart-aching and serious, and sometimes a bit intellectual, and sometimes a bit upbeat and amusing, but not in a spoof-fun way. It’s an altogether rather more serious work, and even when you think it’s being light-hearted and funny there’s a seriousness behind it.
“It’s observational about stereotype characters. And one of the stereotypes I chose not to make Gerald, at least on the album, was a politician, as it seemed too obvious – although he does appear on the album sleeve as a recently unseated Labour MP who’s come to live in the St Cleve vicinity. He does however appear in other guises like a corrupt Christian evangelist, as an overpaid investment banker with huge bonuses and the kind of person we love to hate these days, and as a casualty of war as a repatriated serviceman helping those less fortunate than himself to acclimatize back into the real world with obviously a very bitter sense of the futility of war. Those are down moments and scary moments. But you need to take people through it. So you sometimes do it in a light-hearted way.
“Somebody may draw the parallel with Quadrophenia, but that’s completely wrong. This is not split personality, this is about totally different characters that we all might have become in our lives. If we’d walked on the other side of the road, or picked up the `phone, or read that article in the newspaper, things like that could have changed our lives. And that unmistakably is what happens to people in their lives, the friends they make, the relationships they enter into, perhaps in marriage or whatever else. This is all about – as it says in a couple of places – the what ifs, the maybes and might have beens moments in life.
“One of the pivotal moments on this album is the piece ‘A Change Of Horses,’ which fans will recognize from our stage shows over the last year or so. It’s about that point in your life where you say, if there’s ever going to be a change it’s got to be now. That happens to a lot of people perhaps in the forties or fifties, and I rather like the idea of this re-gearing, this re-evaluation, and there being a second part in your life where fate draws you to some conclusion. But it’s not just looking back, it’s also about looking forward. The what ifs and maybes were rich and exciting moments in my teenage years, filled with a mixture of promise and sheer terror, because it’s a scary world out there. So that’s what I’m exploring, and I think it works for people at both ends of the age spectrum, for the middle-aged Waitrose trolley-pushing shopper and the pubescent youngster who’s facing some decision-making.”
Ian confirms that Thick As A Brick 2 is a concept album. “Yes, it is very much a concept album! It is a concept album that I think is fairly grown-up and mature, but I think it should ring bells for people of all ages. It’s an intellectual proposition. I’m not sure how many people are going to be ready for that kind of a thing, but I think there will be enough people for it to be a worthwhile record to make. But it’s unashamed in its asking you to think about it and listen to it. Some of the music is pretty straight-ahead which you can just kind of groove to, and some things work without your being too cerebral about it. But the overall concept and indeed lots of the lyrics and parts of the music you are going to have to make a bit of an effort with. I think that some of us like to do that. Combine that with all the detail that’s gone into the peripheral aspect of presenting the album with the artwork, the stcleve.com website and so on, it all wraps up into a big package that I think will give people a lot of fun.”
Tickets go on sale Friday, March 9 at 10:00 am
Tickets available online at ticketmaster.com, at all ticketmaster outlets. To charge tickets by phone, call (800) 745-3000 and visit www.ticketmaster.com/outlets for a list of ticketmaster outlets.
Reserved tickets are $79.50 – $39.75 plus applicable service charges. All ages are welcome.
Progressive rock festival Progdreams will be held on April 14th, 2012, at Boerderij, Zoetermeer in The Netherlands. The line-up includes German band RPWL, the legendary British symphonic rock group The Enid, Norwegian space rock band Airbag and Belgian psychedelic/space rock band Quantum Fantay.
RPWL is currently promoting its new concept album called Beyond Man and Time. The line-up includes Yogi Lang on vocals and keyboards; Kalle Wallner on guitars; Markus Jehle on Keyboards; Werner Taus on bass; and Marc Turiaux on drums
The Enid is the legendary British progressive rock band founded by composer and keyboardist Robert John Godfrey, that is known for its rich symphonic music influences. Throughout the years the band has seen many line-up changes, always guided by Godfrey. The current line-up features Joe Payne on vocals; Jason Ducker on guitar; Robert John Godfrey on keyboards; Max Read on guitars, bass and vocals; original member Dave Storey on drums and percussion; and Nic Willes on bass, guitar and percussion. The most recent albums are Live with The CBSO at Symphony Hall and Journeys End (2012).
Airbag is a five-piece band from Oslo (Norway). They perform a mix of classic rock, progressive rock, chillout and jazz. Their music is influenced by Pink Floyd, Porcupine Tree, Talk Talk, Radiohead and Marillion. Line-up: Anders Hovdan on bass; Asle Tostrup on vocals, guitar, percussion; Bjørn Riis on guitar, vocals; Henrik Fossum on drums; Jørgen Hagen on keyboards. Their latest album is All Rights Removed (2011).
Quantum Fantay makes a hybrid sound that incorporates space rock, goa trance music, fusion, and dub. The line-up includes Pete Mush on synthesizer; Jaro on bass; Dario Frodo on guitars; Gino Bartolini on drums; Charles Sla on flute.
The Soundscapes Concert Series returns to the Nazareth Center for the Arts on Friday, March 23, with Mark Jenkins of the UK.
A leading figure in the UK’s electronic music scene for over 20 years, Mark Jenkins has performed as a member of White Noise and with singer Arthur Brown and members of Can, Gong, Van Der Graaf Generator, and Tangerine Dream. He is the author of the acclaimed book and CD “Analog Synthesizers” and is the first musician in the world to release a CD created entirely on the Apple iPad.
Mark has created music for concert performances, advertising, TV and CD releases and has performed at the London Planetarium, London Royal Greenwich Observatory Planetarium, London South Bank, Carnegie Science Center Pittsburgh, National Theatre Brazil, and in France, Holland and China.
Doors open at 7:30 pm and the concert is at 8:00 pm. The concert is free. Donations are requested to support the musician and to enable the Nazareth Center for the Arts to pay operating expenses. The NCA is located at 30 Belvidere Street, Nazareth, Pennsylvania 18064 just off of Route 191 on the southwest corner of Belvidere Street and South Spruce Street. Check the NCA site for parking information.
The Soundscapes Concert Series is the concert companion to the Galactic Travels radio program on WDIY-FM and to Thought Radio on WMUH-FM and presents electronic music to the Lehigh Valley.
Sunday, April 22: Wave World (Netherlands)
Friday, May 11: Broekhuis, Keller, and Schonwalder (Germany)
The first ever UK appearance of legendary Swedish symphonic progressive rock band Anglagard with take place at Summers End Festival at Lydney Town Hall in Lydney, (Gloucestershire) on September 28-30, 2012.
Anglagard was a pioneer of the 1990s progressive rock revival, with a sound drenched in the 70s, and released two excellent albums, Hybris and Epilog. Their live shows are legendary, with three festival appearances in the USA particularly well remembered. After reuniting briefly in 2003, 2012 will mark the long awaited release of album three and a return to live activity. This may be the only opportunity to see the band live in the UK.
Summers End also announced the performance of Knifeworld. Led by guitarist and vocalist Kavus Torabi (The Cardiacs, North Sea Radio Orchestra, Guapo) the band mixes superb pop hooks with dense arrangements which blend progressive rock and psychedelia into an unique recipe.