NJProghouse will present Rikard Sjöblom Band with special guest Necromonkey on October 15, 2016 at at Roxy and Dukes Roadhouse in Dunellen, New Jersey.
Rikard Sjöblom is the multi-instrumentalist and vocalist of the now-legendary progressive rock band Beardfish. Sjöblom recently released a solo album titled The Unbendable Sleep (2016). Unlike his entirely instrumental 2006 debut album Cyklonmannen, The Unbendable Sleep showcases Sjöblom’s extraordinary vocal range, complex-yet-catchy keyboard melodies, and guitar work.
In addition to his solo work, Sjöblom is the most recent addition to English progressive titans Big Big Train, having performed keyboards, guitars, accordion, and backing vocals on the band’s 2016 album Folklore.
The lineup will include Rikard Sjöblom on guitar, keyboards, and vocals; Petter Diamant on drums; and Rasmus Diamant on bass.
Necromonkey is the project of founding (and former) member of the much-admired Swedish progressive rock band Änglagård, drummer and multi-instrumentalist Mattias Olsson, and multi-instrumentalist David Lundberg of the eclectic Swedish progressive band Gösta Berlings Saga. The discography includes A Glimpse Of Possible Endings, Show Me Where It Hertz, and Live At Pianos, NYC.
One of the great Swedish progressive rock bands is back with a superb album titled “Dot.” How can you go wrong with a 23-minute suite titled “God, the Universe and Everything Else No One Really Cares About, Part 1”. The album was inspired by a text by the famous American author and astronomer Carl Sagan where he talked about how small and insignificant we are in this massive universe.
The first track on Dot is a brief sound effect intro that leads into the monumental piece ‘God Part 1.’ This suite uses the pop-style vocal hooks used by progressive bands like Big Big Train and Echolyn featuring beautiful male/female vocal harmonies and state of the art instrumental symphonic progressive rock sections that showcase the talent of Karmakanic’s members. It’s packed with masterful keyboard and guitar work.
Track 3, ‘Higher Ground’ begins with more of the happy pop vocal music sensibility although the band shifts to full progressive rock mode on the second part of this 10-minute piece, with memorable guitar, piano, and synth melodies and a beautiful harmony vocal conclusion.
‘Steer By The Stars’ is a much shorter song that feels like a classic rock song with sing-along vocals. It has a Todd Rundgren feel on the vocal side. “This 4-minute song stands in contrast to the 30 minute epic that is on the album,” says band leader Jonas Reingold. “I like the Yin and Yang philosophy; dark, bright, complex, simple. It has always been a real thread throughout the musical history of Karmakanic. It showcases Göran Edman at his best, Gentle Giantish vocal harmony arrangement with a stunning lead performance. This is also my very first compositional collaboration with my long time buddy Andy Tillison, he also recorded some awesome Hammond organ for the track. Start the engines and steer by the stars, it might take you to places never seen before.”
Track 5 begins with a lovely fretless bass melody. It’s a brilliant song with epic guitar and notable lead and harmony vocals.
The album ends with ‘God Part 2’ which begins with cinematic orchestration that leads into ballad-style vocals. The piece builds up very nicely with drums, synths, jazz-style fretless bass and vocals. The final part is an epic conclusion with majestic keyboards and electric guitar solo.
The lineup on “Dot” includes Jonas Reingold (The Flower Kings) on fretted and fretless bass, electric and acoustic guitars, keyboards and vocals; Göran Edman (Yngwie Malmsteen) on lead vocals; Morgan Ågren (Casualties Of Cool, Frank Zappa, Steve Vai) on drums; Lalle Larsson (Agents Of Mercy) on keyboards; Nils Erikson on lead vocals; Andy Tillson on Hammond organ; Krister Jonsson on electric and acoustic guitars; Andy Bartosh on electric guitars; Ray Aichinger on saxophone and flute; Christine Lenk on backing vocals; Alex Reingold on backing vocals; and Norah Reingold on backing vocals.
The album artwork for Dot was developed by Hugh Syme, who has in the past made covers for Rush, Aerosmith and Iron Maiden. The album is available as a CD/DVD with live performances from Rosfest 2012, The Making Of Dot and Interviews; vinyl LP with CD; and digital download.
In a press release signed by Max Read, Jason Ducker, Dominic Tofield, Zach Bullock and the Enid household, British progressive rock band The Enid announced that vocalist Joe Payne and The Enid have gone their separate ways.
The Enid added that “it is time for something darker, heavier, more extreme and relevant to an impending tomorrow.”
Pictures at an Exhibition is one of the great progressive rock classic albums. It is also one of the greatest live albums released in the early 1970s. The three progressive rock pioneers, Keith Emerson, Greg Lake and Carl Palmer were at their prime. They recorded this live album in 1971 in Newcastle (UK).
Rock and classical music are brilliantly combined in Pictures at an Exhibition, which is a progressive rock tribute to the music of Russian composer Mussorgsky. The three trailblazers transform the classical compositions by injecting early synthesizers, wild electric organ blues progressions, energetic rock drums and Greg Lake’s melodic sensibility on vocals and guitars, although he also joins his two bands mates during their most energetic moments on electric bass.
The Deluxe Edition is a real treat for ELP fans. Disc 1 includes a remastered version of the original album along with a Pictures at an Exhibition Medley bonus track recorded live at the Mar y Sol Festival in Puerto Rico in 1972.
Disc 2 includes another live performance of Pictures at an Exhibition; this time in London. I love these different live recordings because many of the solos vary. The remarkable organ improvisation in “Blues Variations” varied from concert to concert. Additionally, Disc 2 contains live versions of earlier material, such as The Barbarian, Knife-Edge and Rondo.
In summary, Pictures at an Exhibition, Deluxe Edition is a fabulous recording that showcases the mastery of three talented musicians who broke new ground by fusing classical music and cutting edge rock.
Burnt Belief – Emergent (Alchemy Records ALCD 1029/Hard World HWCD 012, 2016)
Burnt Belief is a remarkable transatlantic collaboration between British bassist Colin Edwin (Porcupine Tree/Metallic Taste of Blood/O.R.k etc) and American guitarist Jon Durant. Their new album is titled Emergent and features a mix of progressive rock, jazz-rock, world music tunes and beats, Berlin-style sequencers, and ambient electronic music and soundscapes.
It’s refreshing to listen to these forward-thinking musicians, who create beautiful music that’s on the cutting edge of progressive music.
The eight instrumental track range from meditative and melodic compositions to exotic melodies, mysterious atmospheres and rock-fueled pieces featuring captivating instrumental interplay and overdubs.
A third musician, drummer Vinny Sabatino, has been added to the band, providing creative beats as well as powerful drumming in some of the tracks.
The lineup includes Colin Edwin on bass and programming; Jon Durant on guitars and pianos; and Vinny Sabatino on drums and percussion.
The musicians collaborated for the first time when Edwin contributed bass to Durant’s 2011 album, Dance of the Shadow Planets. It was recorded at three studios, two in the United States and one in the U.K. Edwin and Durant exchanged digital files over the Internet. The duo’s first joint collaboration was the album Burnt Belief released in 2012. it was followed by Etymology in 2014.
Emergent is a totally satisfying progressive music album by two of the finest creative minds in the current scene.
Although released on progressive rock label Musea, pagan HARVEST is difficult to categorize. The trio combines English folk, classical and rock traditions. The musical backbone of the band are multi-instrumentalist Lawrence Reed, who provides the most memorable instrumental moments throughout the album, and bassist Steve Daymond.
pagan HARVEST delivers a mix of folk-style vocals as well as spoken word performed by Jon Bickley. He’s supported by singer Debbie Hill who provides backing vocals. The lyrics are inspired by the English pastoral tradition.
The lineup on pagan HARVEST includes Lawrence Reed on guitars, keyboards, percussion, cinematic orchestral arrangements and backing vocals; Jon Bickley on vocals; Steve Daymond on bass and backing vocals and Debbie Hill on backing vocals.
pagan HARVEST enthusiastically explore the intersections of English folk music and progressive rock.
English musician, spoken word singer and poet Gilli Smyth passed away August 22, 2016 in Australia. Gilli Smyth was the co-founder of psychedelic progressive rock bands Gong, Mother Gong and Planet Gong.
Benjamin Taubkin, Simone Sou and Guilherme Kastrup – Sounds of Life (Adventure Music, 2015)
These three musicians create a remarkable combination of jazz, contemporary acoustic, electronic and world music sounds. Percussionists Simone Sou and Guilherme Kastrup admired the work of pianist and composer Benjamin Taubkin and eventually met to work together on a new project. Sounds of Life is the result of this extraordinary collaboration.
The three musicians play piano and acoustic percussion instruments, along with keyboards, samplers and effects, in a tribute to the indigenous peoples of Brazil and Congo.
Sounds of Life captures the restless spirit of three talented musicians who deliver a fascinating mix of piano, world music samples and global percussion.
Pink Floyd Records has announced the reintroduction ‘Atom Heart Mother’, ‘Meddle’ and ‘Obscured By Clouds’ on vinyl. The three albums have been remastered from the original analog master tapes and will be released on September 23rd, 2016. ‘The Wall’ and ‘The Division Bell’ are also back in stock on vinyl from August 26th.
Pink Floyd followed their 1960s albums with their fifth studio album, 1970’s ‘Atom Heart Mother’ featuring the classic lineup of Roger Waters, David Gilmour, Richard Wright and Nick Mason plus an orchestra. The LP went on to become the band’s first UK No.1 record.
In a short break from touring ‘Atom Heart Mother’, in 1971, Pink Floyd released the progressive psychedelic album, ‘Meddle’. The album included the epic 23-minute track Echoesthat occupied the entirety of the B-side of the record.
Pink Floyd’s seventh album ‘Obscured By Clouds’ was originally recorded as the soundtrack to the French film ‘La Vallée’ but it was eventually released as a standalone album in 1972.
The 3CD boxed set follows Miles Davis’ musical evolution in the studio from 1966-1968, performing with his “second great quintet.” This is the latest edition in Columbia/Legacy’s Miles Davis Bootleg Series, a set of recordings that includes all rehearsals, partial and alternate takes, extensive and fascinating studio conversation and other components.
Miles Davis Quintet: Freedom Jazz Dance: The Bootleg Series, Vol 5. features the master takes of performances that would appear on the Miles Smiles (1967), Nefertiti (1968) and Water Babies (recorded 1967, released 1976) albums together with more than two hours of previously unreleased studio recordings from original sessions produced by Teo Macero (with the exception of “Fall,” produced by Howard A. Roberts).