Tag Archives: avant-garde rock

Cuneiform Records to Release First Art Zoyd Boxed Set

Cuneiform Records has announced the release of the first ever Art Zoyd box set. The collection titled Art Zoyd, 44 ½ years of music will be available November 24th, 2017.

Art Zoyd is a highly influential French progressive rock band. They are part of a subgenre known as RIO (Rock In Opposition), a set of artists that play avant-garde rock influenced by progressive rock experimentalists such as Magma as well as contemporary classical music composers.

The boxed set contains 8 CDs of live recordings covering the years 1972-2004 and four CDs of studio recordings, sketches and outtakes from 1980-2005. There are also two DVDs, one is comprised of historical television appearances from the late 1970s into the end of the 1980s and the other DVD disc includes the entire performance of Art Zoyd’s celebration at the RIO Festival.

The box and all elements were designed by British graphic artist Max Franosch.

Buy Art Zoyd, 44 ½ years of music in Europe

buy Art Zoyd, 44 ½ years of music in the rest of the world

Avant Time of the Grets

Ut Gret ‎– Time of the Grets

Ut Gret ‎– Time of the Grets (ZNR Records ZNR1009, 1998)

Ut Gret is one of the leading American bands in the avant-garde side of progressive rock. On Time of the Grets you’ll find free form improvisation, avant-garde jazz and elements of progressive rock.

The album features special guests such as Eugene Chadbourne, Davey Williams and Henry Kaiser.

The highlight of the album is a fabulous Zeuhl-style piece titled Magma Futura.

The lineup includes Joee Conroy on guitars, Chapman stick, violin, bass, viola de gamba, santoor, psaltery, autoharp, cheng, shamisen, pipa, zitherphonics; David Stilley on saxophones, keyboards, bassoon, clarinets, flutes, wind synthesizer, percussion, MIDI mapping; Gregory Acker on flute, chendra, percussion; Davey Williams on electric guitar; Eugene Chadbourne on guitar; Murray Reams on drums; Henry Kaiser on guitars; Greg Goodman on piano; and Misha Feigin on vocals.

Ancestor’s Tale

Ut Gret – Ancestor’s Tale (AltrOck Productions, 2014)

Ancestor’s Tale is the fourth album by American progressive music band Ut Gret. The ensemble’s sound is characterized by the combination of prog rock instrumentation and various wind instruments such as the bassoon and clarinet. It’s a mix of avant-garde jazz, free form improvisation, chamber music and Canterbury-style progressive rock.

Ut Gret intertwines structured musical works with unexpected experimental improvisation.

The lineup on Ancestor’s Tale includes Joee Conroy on electric guitar, acoustic 12-string guitar, fretless bass; Steve Roberts on organ, electric piano, mellotron, marimba, vibes, samples; Jackie Royce on bassoon, flute, contra-bassoon; Steve Good on clarinet, bass clarinet; Gary Pahler on drums; Sydney Simpson: double bass; Cheyenne Mize on vocals, violin; and Gregory Acker on flutes, percussion, digeridoo, baritone saxophone.

The CD booklet includes fascinating artwork and descriptions of the musical pieces.

Buy Ancestor’s Tale in the rest of the world

Buy Ancestor’s Tale in Europe

Experiments of the Orchestra of the Upper Atmosphere

Orchestra of the Upper Atmosphere – Theta Three

Orchestra of the Upper Atmosphere – Theta Three (Discus Music, 2017)

Theta Three is the third album by the Orchestra of the Upper Atmosphere. It’s a captivating group of musicians that combine trance-like electronic music, progressive rock, jazz-rock fusion and avant-garde classical music through improvisation.

The new album is a two-disc set, Alpha (α) and Omega (Ω). The pieces flow seamlessly, crossing progressive music boundaries with total ease.

The lineup on Theta Three includes Martin Archer on keyboards, electronics, saxophones, clarinets, flute, bass recorder, and bass harmonica; Chris Bywater on keyboards, electronics, laptop, percussion, voice, and random processed electric violin; Steve Dinsdale on electronic drum kit, floor percussion, and keyboards; frostlake on voice, electronics, and viola; Yvonna Magda on violin and electronics; Walt Shaw on percussion, electronics and voice; and Terry Todd on bass.

Guests: George Murray on trombone; Paul Schatzberger on violin; Aby Vulliamy on viola; and Angela Rosenfeld on cello.

Buy Theta Three

Avant-Garde Nirvana

Aranis – Smells Like (Homerecords, 2017)

Aranis is one of those bands that is hard to classify. It’s an acoustic music ensemble that plays contemporary music with an avant-garde edge. It has very close connections to the Rock In Opposition genre minus the rock. You’ll find melodic chamber music segments, minimalism and some dissonant moments as well.

Smells Like contains Aranis’ vision of some of Nirvana’s best known songs. They are skillfully transformed into contemporary acoustic pieces that provide new life to these compositions.

The lineup includes Liesbeth Lambrecht on violin and viola; Pierre Chevalier on piano; Marjolein Cools on accordion; Jana Arns on flute and alto flute; and Joris Vanvinckenroye on double bass.
Smells Like is a highly original experimental recreation of the music of Nirvana.

Buy Smells Like

Progday 2017 Reveals First Acts

Progressive rock festival Progday announced the first artists scheduled to perform Saturday and Sunday, September 2nd and 3rd, at Storybook Farm in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

The festival will feature acclaimed Peruvian band Flor De Loto, sensational American progressive band INFiNiEN and celebrated Swiss avant-garde ensemble Sonar.

 

 

 

More details at www.progday.net

Headline photo: Flor De Loto

Mesmerizing Sounds for Real or Imagined Films

Zero Times Everything – Sonic Cinema (ZXE Music, 2017)

Sonic Cinema is a fascinating sound exploration album by Zero Times Everything. The three musicians create a magical world of cinematic sounds that draw influences from various progressive music genres.

The album opens with the industrial sounds of “And Now This.” It’s followed by “Events in a Field” a mix of ambient and minimalist electronics.

On track 3, “Led” Zero Times Everything plays a mix of hard rock riffing and progressive rock lines.

Next is “Accident,” where you’ll find a mix of ambient sounds, effects, drones and distorted guitar.

“Natron 40” presents mysterious mechanical sounds and progressive rock-style guitars.

The eerie track 6, “Ghost” reveals hypnotic enveloping sounds and odd beats.

On track 7, “Kapital” the influences turn towards Berlin and Dusseldorf, with trance like Berlin-style sequencers, symphonic passages and robotic voices.

“Vox Populi” features a cacophony of sounds and voices with underlying sequences and string synths.

Track 9, “Schizoid” introduces nightmarish sounds, child voices and increasingly high pitched psychedelic guitars.

The album concludes with “The Cathedral of All Saints” where you hear a childlike organ sound and reverberating synths that morphs into deep ambient electronica.

The lineup includes Richard Sylvarnes on Kaoss pads, loops, synths, rhythms, guitars, and vocals; Pietro Russino on guitars, loops, and violin; and Tony Geballe on guitars, synths, and loops. Special guest: Sønje Sylvarnes on vocals.

Buy Sonic Cinema

Rock in Opposition 2016 Program Revealed

The 2016 Rock in Opposition (R.I.O.) Festival will take place September 16-18 in France. This three-day festival is dedicated to artistically-uncompromising rock music. The festival specializes in the avant-garde forms of progressive rock as well as Zeuhl.

The 2016 lineup includes:

Apollonius Abraham Schwarz (Switzerland)
Cicala-Mvta (Japan)
Half the Sky (Japan)
Jump for Joy (England, Germany, Netherlands)
Magma (France)
Nippon Eldorado Kabarett (Italy, Japan)
No Noise No Reduction (France)
Pixvae (France)
Richard Pinhas & Arthur Narcy (France)
Upsilon Acrux (USA)
Uz Jsme Doma (Czech Republic)

More at www.rocktime.org/rio

Avant-Garde Music Developed in Various Directions

Joseph Lamm & Music Hypnotica - Andean's Ascent
Joseph Lamm & Music Hypnotica – Andean’s Ascent

Joseph Lamm & Music Hypnotica – Andean’s Ascent (Jefferson House Communique, 2016)

Experimental album by a trio that combines sound collages, industrial rock, minimalism, trance and world music elements. It could work perfectly for an avant-garde installation although in this case, it’s the companion to the book Andean’s Ascent.

The lineup includes Elliott Lamm on acoustic, electric and slide guitars, piano, bass, soundscapes; David Price on keyboards, loops, bass, elixir and rhythm; and Joseph Lamm on vocals, percussion, and electromagnetic throat.

Buy Andean’s Ascent

Impeccable Avant Rock Artistry

Loomings - Everyday Mythology (AltrOck Productions Alt-048, 2015)
Loomings – Everyday Mythology (AltrOck Productions Alt-048, 2015)

Italian multi-instrumentalist Jacopo Costa takes the listener into a wild ride of avant-garde rock with unexpected twists and turns. The band’s sounds revolves around the multiple layers of vocal interplay, outstanding vibraphones and bass. You’ll find Rock in Opposition connections along with echoes of Frank Zappa, the zanier side of Canterbury, some Zeuhl and even occasional doowop.

Loomings was founded in Strasbourg (France) in 2012 by Jacopo Costa along with three classically-trained vocalists: Maria Denami, Ludmila Schwartzwalder and Benoît Rameau; bassist Louis Haessler; and percussionist Enrico Pedicone.

Everyday Mythology includes impeccable examples of avant-garde rock craftsmanship performed by a fascinating ensemble of talented vocalists and musicians.

Buy Everyday Mythology