Famed Yes vocalist and songwriter Jon Anderson and Italian composer, conductor, international producer and arranger Marco Sabiu have a new single titled “Limitless Lives.” The recording was co-written and performed by Anderson and Sabiu, and is now available as a digital download. The song is also available on Marco Sabiu’s most recent album ‘Audio Ergo Sum‘, which was presented on February 18, 2012 on live TV before an audience of 12 million; the album has consequently reached iTunes Italy Top 10.
Progressive rock legend Jon Anderson, who has one of the most familiar voices in modern music, and is best known for his work with Yes, Vangelis and Kitaro, had this to say about his musical collaboration with Marco Sabiu: “A good friend of mine, musician Alessandro de Rosa put Marco Sabiu and I in touch with each other just last month. I was instantly connected to Marco’s music; he sent me the music track and within moments I had sang the song and lyric and sent back to him. Marco loved my singing, so we talked about releasing the song on his new album. I love his ‘Limitless’ theme for the song, as I wrote the lyric I realized we have so much to learn in this life, and we are truly Limitless human beings.”
“The collaboration with Jon was born by chance, as most of the best things often do,” says Marco. “What I found in Jon is the ideal musical partner: I’ve never met anybody who has understood my music and bettered it so quickly and effectively as Jon did. I was always very passionate about prog-rock, and being able to work with a legend like Jon is an honor, and truly exciting.”
Along with being a highly respected arranger (Take That, Kylie Minogue, Pavorotti, Morricone), Marco is currently a TV star and crossover chart artist in his native Italy, as well as orchestrator and conductor for major Italian rock stars, including the arena act Ligabue. Jon Anderson and Marco Sabiu are planning to record a full album together and a tour in 2013.
Steam Theory announced the release of its second album, Helios Rider. Steam Theory is a Baltimore (Maryland) based recording project and accompanying live band that performs original progressive rock around the Baltimore and Washington D.C. region.
Helios Rider is a follow up to 2010’s Enduring Delirium album. The new disc includes 9 original instrumentals that combine elements from progressive rock, Americana, Funk, and Fusion.
Jason Denkevitz is the musician behind the project. He is joined by Karras Johnson on drums; Sherif Shalaan on Keyboards and Ori Shokek on Keyboards.
Progressive rock guitarist Peter Matuchniak has a new album titled “Uncover Me” that is set for release on ProgRock Records. The album is described as a wide musical experience through progressive, jazz, folk and rock. The two-part Landscape Burning suite features 15 minutes of music reminiscent of Pink Floyd and Alan Parsons.
Uncover Me offers acoustic music laced with flute as well as harder-edged rock tunes doused with saxophone. The underlying basis is Peter Matuchniak weaving his ethereal guitar sound into his compositions.
“I’ve been fortunate to have some fantastic local musicians support me on this one: Jimmy Keegan (drummer for Spock’s Beard), Natalie Azerad (singer with Pink Floyd tribute W1P and live with Alan Parsons), Rick Meadows (bassist from Gekko Projekt), Ted Zahn (singer with WZMG), along with some fine sax and flute from classical/jazz musicians David Gilman and Conor Jonson,” said Peter Matuchniak. “Shawn Gordon offers a great place for music that falls in and around the progressive genre at “TheRecordLabel”, and I’m proud to have my debut album be a part of his label.”
“Since I met and signed Peters band Evolve IV back in 2008, we’ve become good friends and I’m continually amazed by his talent and drive,” said said Shawn Gordon, president of ProgRock Records. “It’s a real pleasure to be able to work with him on this solo release.”
British guitarist Peter Matuchniak plays a progressive style of guitar influenced by Steve Hackett (Genesis), Dave Gilmour (Pink Floyd), Andy Latimer (Camel) and Steve Howe (Yes).
His compositional style draws from the varied genres he was exposed to at home: jazz-rock, the latest radio hits, and parents who raised him on classical music. But the basic element is always progressive rock. Peter Matuchniak has played with a number of bands in this genre both in London where he grew up as well as in his adopted southern California home.
Recently he has released albums with Gekko Projekt and Evolve IV on the Prog Rock Records label. Back in the 1980’s Peter Matuchniak was part of the neo-progressive rock movement with Janysium and Mach One.
Moon Safari, one of Europe’s leading progressive rock bands, has a new album titled The Gettysburg Address. The Gettysburg Address is Moon Safari’s fourth release. It is a two CD set recorded live during their epic performance at the Majestic Theatre in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, at Rosfest 2011.
The Gettysburg Address includes some of Moon Safari’s most popular songs from all three studio albums.
Moon Safari is a symphonic progressive rock band from Skellefteå, Sweden. It was formed in 2003 and have three studio albums: A Doorway to Summer (2005), Blomljud (2008), and Lover’s End (2010).
The line-up includes Simon Åkesson on lead vocals, backing vocals, piano, Hammond organ, moog, mellotron, choir arrangements; Petter Sandström on lead vocals, backing vocals, acoustic guitar, harmonica; Pontus Åkesson on guitars, backing vocals; Johan Westerlund on bass, backing vocals; and Tobias Lundgren on drums, percussion, backing vocals.
1 – CD1 – Moonwalk
2 – CD1 – Lover’s End – Part 1
3 – CD1 – A Kid Called Panic
4 – CD1 – Yasgurs Farm
5 – CD1 – The World’s Best Dreamers
6 – CD2 – Dance Across The Ocean
7 – CD2 – Heartland
8 – CD2 – New York City Summergirl
9 – CD2 – Other Half of the Sky
Australian progressive rock multi-instrumentalist Ben Craven announced today the remastered reissue of his Two False Idols album “Some of you might know that in 2006 I released an album called Two False Idols under the name of Tunisia,” said Craven. “It started out life as a band project and went through a number of changes before being branded with a solo moniker.”
Two False Idols by Tunisia was a lavish production with an expansive sound and dense atmosphere. A version in 5.1 surround was released. “During the making of Great & Terrible Potions my sonic preferences changed,” adds Craven. “I wanted to revisit the first album to bring out all the parts more clearly in the mix. I also re-sequenced the track running order to improve the flow of the album.”
The new take on Two False Idols is now available under Ben Craven and remixed with the benefit of hindsight. You can listen to it in its entirety at Craven’s Bandcamp site (and even purchase it for as little as AUD $5).
Following on from the highly-admired The Tall Ships, British progressive rock band It Bites returns with its first concept album in a career that extends over 25 years.
Map of the Past is inspired by the discovery of an old family picture. It is a deeply personal journey that delves into love, passion, jealousy, anger, remorse and loss through the eyes of a previous generation against the backdrop of Britain as it moves into a new century and one of the most significant periods of its history.
Written by vocalist and guitarist John Mitchell and keyboardist John Beck over the course of 2011, Map of the Past was recorded at Outhouse Studios in Reading and features Bob Dalton on drums and Lee Pomeroy on bass.
Map of the Past will be released on March 26th, 2012. The band will be on tour to promote the album in the UK.
Man In The Photograph
Map of the Past
The Big Machine
Send No Flowers
Meadow and the Stream
The Last Escape
One of the legendary 1970s prog bands from the UK, Wally, has reunited and recorded a new CD titled ‘Montpellier‘. The album contains reworked demos from the Wally’s earlier incarnation, along with new material written by founding members Roy Webber and Paul Middleton. The CD came out on February 10, 2012 in the UK on Gonzo MultiMedia.
Wally, led by singer-songwriter Roy Webber, was formed in Harrogate, Yorkshire in England in the early 1970s. In 1973, after playing the northern UK pub rock circuit, the group entered a new act competition organized by English music paper Melody Maker. The band made it to the finals held at London’s Roundhouse Theatre, but did not win. However, they caught the eye of one of the judges, “Whispering” Bob Harris, legendary DJ of The Old Grey Whistle Test.
The runners-up prize was the opportunity to record a session for Harris’s BBC radio show The Monday Program. Taking Wally under his wing, Harris secured a recording contract with Atlantic Records. “I really liked them,” recalls Bob Harris. “I liked the swirling sound they made…acoustic guitar, electric guitar, fiddle, Fender Rhodes piano and pedal steel guitar. I liked their harmonies, the way their voices matched. I liked their influences…David Crosby, Jackson Browne and Neil Young. But most of all I liked Roy Webber’s songs.”
The group’s eponymous debut album, recorded at Morgan Recording Studios in London, home of Yes and Black Sabbath, was released in 1974. It was co-produced by Bob Harris and renowned Yes keyboardist Rick Wakeman, who had seen Wally perform at the Roundhouse. “I will never forget the first time I heard Wally,” Rick Wakeman relates. “I was completely bowled over by both the music and enthusiasm of the guys in the band for what they were doing. Whilst singing their praises to all the music industry I came across over the next few weeks, which included my management at the time, and Phil Carson, who was the head of Atlantic Records, was discovering that my great friend Bob Harris was also a massive fan and this culminated in the pair of us having the privilege of producing their first album together.”
After Wally’s debut release, the band embarked on a series of tours throughout the UK, Japan and the United States. They opened for Yes at a concert in London at the Alexandra Palace and also made an appearance on The Old Grey Whistle Test. “The band recorded sessions for my ‘Sounds of the ’70s’ show on Radio 1 and played on Whistle Test,” says Bob Harris. “They slept on the floor of my London flat, we did big tours together, bought one-legged pedal steel guitars and broke the bar-bill record at Morgan as half of Harrogate arrived to put a drink on our tab, or a tab on our drink…we didn’t care. We were having far too much of a good time.”
“The great thing about Wally for me was the fact that they were as tremendous on stage as they were in the studio,” adds Rick Wakeman, “so I had no qualms whatsoever when inviting them onto the bill at my ‘Journey To The Centre of the Earth’ concert at Crystal Palace in the summer of 1974, and as expected, they were tremendous.” Wally released a second album titled ‘Valley Gardens‘, but by that time continual touring had taken its toll and the band eventually parted after Atlantic ended their contract. Wally’s members would go their separate ways, only to reunite after a 30 year hiatus!
In 2009, the surviving members of Wally’s original line-up (Roy Webber, Paul Middleton, Pete Sage, Roger Narraway and Nick Glennie-Smith, augmented by Frank Mizen on pedal steel and Will Jackson on guitar) reunited and performed to a sellout crowd in their hometown of Harrogate. A DVD of the concert titled ‘The Urban Man’ was released later that year.
‘Montpellier is the band’s first studio release in decades’. “I’ve always believed that if music is placed above individuals as regards to importance, then it will live on forever,” says Rick Wakeman about Wally’s reunion.
“It’s a relief to report it still has all the qualities that made this instrumental band special all those years ago,” says Graham Chalmers of the Harrogate Advertiser about Wally’s new CD. “Emotional but not sentimental, epic but grounded, warmly melodic but with the emphasis on harmonies and the overall feel than the central riff.”
Legendary progressive rock keyboardist Rick Wakeman will be releasing his latest album In The Nick Of Time on March 19th, 2012.
The archive live album was recorded in 2003 during an extensive British tour with the New English Rock Ensemble. In The Nick Of Time comprises 7 tracks including: Catherine Parr/Beware Your Enemies, No Earthly Connection, White Rock and Wurm which is a track originally found on The Yes Album as part of Starship Trooper.
Rick Wakeman is best known as the keyboard wizard for the influential progressive rock band Yes. He’s had a brilliant solo career with now classic prog rock albums. In 1972, Rick Wakeman released his first solo album, one of the most iconic prog albums of all time, The Six Wives of Henry VIII. The album was a great success, to date selling over 15,000,000 copies worldwide. Other concept albums included “Journey To The Center Of The Earth” and “The Myths and Legends of King Arthur.”
Wakeman also composes film scores. Some of his best known works include Ken Russell’s Liszttomania, Creepshow 2, The Burning, Kathleen Turner’s Crimes of Passion, the winter Olympics film White Rock, and many others.
Sebastian Hardie, the legendary Australian symphonic progressive rock band led by guitarist Mario Millo, is back with a new album titled Blueprint. This is the band’s third studio album since the now classics Four Moments (1975) & Windchase (1976).
After disbanding in the late 1970s Sebastian Hardie was asked to reform and perform a one off show at Progfest ’94 in Los Angeles. The show was recorded and the CD Live in L. A. was released.
In July 2003 Sebastian Hardie reformed for a concert tour in Japan and later that year were special guests at the Yes concerts in Sydney and Melbourne.
After the concerts in Japan and the shows with Yes, band members decided to record another album and continue with live performances. The problem was logistics. Drummer Alex Plavsic was living and working 1000 kilometers away in Queensland while the other members were in Sydney with their own personal and work responsibilities. This provided limited opportunities to get together. to rehearse and record new material. But they pulled it off and composed material for a new cd. The six new pieces became the cd Blueprint.
Swedish singer Hasse Fröberg and his progressive rock group Musical Companion have announced the release of their second album. Powerplay’ is the second album by the Flower Kings vocalist & Musical Companion. One year after the release of their critically highly acclaimed debut ‘Futurepast‘ (Sept. 2010), Hasse Fröberg & Musical Companion entered the studio to record the backing tracks for ‘Powerplay’ (April 2012).
The line-up of the band is still the same, Hasse Fröberg: Lead vocals, rhythm guitar; Anton Lindsjö: Lead guitar, backing vocals; Kjell Haraldsson: Keyboards, backing vocals; Thomsson: Bass, backing vocals; Ola Strandberg: Drums, backing vocals.
Futurepast generated concerts in countries such as Sweden, Norway, Germany, The Netherlands and Belgium. With the release of ‘Powerplay’, Hasse Fröberg & Musical Companion is now confirmed for festivals such as RoSfest in Gettysburg (USA) and Night of the prog in Loreley (Germany) as well as performances on both sides of the Atlantic.
The sound engineer on ‘Powerplay’is Tomas Bodin. He’s a collegue with Hasse in the established and influential progressive rock band The Flower Kings. Even if Hasse likes studio work, he prefers the live scene: “Playing live is definitely the right element for us. I really can’t wait to take The Musical Companion and and the songs on ‘Powerplay’ on the road”.
The album is scheduled for release date April 23rd, 2012
Progressive rock, jazz-rock fusion, ambient electronic music and beyond