Latest Prog News from across the progressive music spectrum & updated throughout April 2021
28/04/2021: That Joe Payne to release live album in June
That Joe Payne has announced that he will release his first live album, By Name By Nature Tour on Friday 25 June 2021. The album will be availabale in several formats: CD | DVD | Blu-ray | Digital. However the DVD and Blu-ray versions will be a limited edition run (500 copies).
As might be anticipated Joe’s well received By Name By Nature, from last year, dominates the live performance. Filmed and recorded on 23rd October 2020 at The Crescent Theatre in Birmingham the set also includes songs Joe originally recorded with John Holden, Methexis and The Enid.
Joe comments: As I said to the audience on the night of the show: “I’ve honestly never been happier to be on stage!” 2020 came with its challenges, but by pulling off this ambitious production despite the limitations, we showed the world just how important our craft is to us. For that very reason, watching this show is like an emotional roller coaster, as we remember how much we’ve missed live music over the last year.
Spellbinding moments to look out for include me duetting with my Love (Not the Same) partner Ms Amy Birks who appears, not in person, but instead as a five-meter-tall video illusion; an effective last-minute innovation as she was unable to attend the show as planned due to long-covid. I also join digital back-up dancers in boyband-esque routines, dodge giant flying fists, and appear to control the weather as I take the audience through millennial topics such as cyberbullying, mental health, and the current climate crisis.”
Pre-ordering available HERE directly from Joe…
SOURCE: That Joe Payne
28/04/2021: Darryl Way to release Destinations 2 in May 2021
Destinations 2 is a follow up to his critically acclaimed album Destinations and is scheduled for release by Spirit of Unicorn Music on 28th May 2021…
Talking about his new album Darryl says: “Like ‘Destinations’, ‘Destinations 2’ sets out to take the listener on a journey to far off and exotic locations, something that in reality is very difficult for us to do at the moment. These tracks are journeys of the mind and are my interpretation of the atmosphere’s and music of each different location, from Sun Baked Mexico to Bohemian Budapest.
Set mostly in a ‘Rock’ format, the tracks are tempered by my new found love of playing the Guitar and my continuing love for playing the Violin. So the pieces themselves lean towards genres where the Guitar and Violin are features of that particular style. However, when the music needs to be more expansive, I have not been able to resist orchestrating it for full orchestra, giving the piece more cinematic depth.
As this music is essentially ‘Program Music’, I’ve also included in the sleeve notes of this album my descriptions of the pieces. As with works like Vivaldi’s ‘Four Seasons’ and Berlioz’s ‘Symphonie Fantastique’, it’s sometimes helpful for the listener to know what the composer’s original intentions were.
Having said that, I’m just as happy for the listener to make up their own stories for the music.”
SOURCE: Glass Onyon PR
26/04/2021: Samuel Hällkvist announces new project with Kavi Kwai and first single Sustain
Swedish guitar experimentalist Samuel Hällkvist has released details of his new collaboration with Kavi Kwai.
Samuel has built a reputation as an avantgarde guitarist walking the tightrope between jazz, progressive rock and postminimalism. He has worked with cross-genre musicians such as Pat Mastelotto, David Torn and Swedish band Isildurs Bane – a collaboration that has allowed him to work with Peter Hammill and Steve Hogarth.
Kavi Kwai is Julia Ringdahl, a Swedish musician and producer who recently released the single Every Beat That Passed with Lost Horizons, written and produced by Kwai with Simon Raymonde (Cocteau Twins, Bella Union) and Richie Thomas (Dif Juz, The Jesus and Mary Chain), earning praise from MOJO, Stereogum and Uncut.
Of the collaboration, Samuel says, “Sustain was originally instrumental and intended to be on my album Epik, Didaktik, Pastoral but I felt like it was missing something so I had to put it aside until the right time. When I read that Kavi Kwai recommended one of my records on a blog somewhere, I thought it would be interesting to do something together since I really like what she does. It quickly turned out that it was a great idea. For me, Sustain is about contemplation and not taking anything for granted, which feels very relevant for this time on so many levels.”
Of working with Samuel, Kavi Kwai says, “I find Samuel’s music very inspiring and have been listening to his albums a lot during the years. And I got so happy when he invited me to be a part of his artistic world for a while.”
SOURCE: Outro Artist Management
25/04/2021: Davey Dodds to release The Rite of Spring concept album next month
The Rite of Spring is the third solo album recorded by Davey Dodds since his return to making music. The previous two albums were collections of songs whereas his latest offering is a full-on concept piece. The Rite of Spring takes the listener through a Druidic Beltane ritual, culminating in a joyous, life-affirming celebration. It is Celtic, psychedelic, pagan and life-affirming.
“The sound is markedly different from Davey’s earlier, sparse, acoustic cd’s. Instead, ‘The Rite of Spring’ is denser, electric and startlingly original. The idea for the album had been brewing for some time and several songs and musical pieces had been sketched out. The corona chaos trashed Davey’s live gig and festival schedule for 2020 – in March, he was on tour in Europe with the mighty Pendragon when life started to unravel.”
Davey’s ‘core’ band – Daniel Billing (bass), Gillie Hotston (electric violin) and David Clifford (drums), along with himself on (vocals, electric & acoustic octave mandolins, mandolin and flutey things), are now able to meet to rehearse and have announced they will be playing some festivals throughout the summer. The band will be performing songs from his previous album, Toadstool Soup along with some extracts from The Rite of Spring. There are already some special concerts booked for 2022 to perform the work with a projection show and dancers around Beltane.
SOURCE: Davey Dodds
Keep up to date with these concerts (and many more) with the TPA UK & Eire Gig Guide
24/04/2021: Mission Jupiter release Confession single taken from their forthcoming studio album
Ahead of the release of their sophomore studio album, Talk To Me, scheduled for release next week, Belarusian quintet release the first single from the album – Confession…
Mission Jupiter came together in 2015 and from the very beginning the project was destined to be experimental in nature, given that all its members had different musical tastes. The quintet include – Nastya Shevtsova (vocals), Vladimir Shvakel (guitar), Dmitri Soldatenko (saxophone), Artem Gulyakevich (bass) and Eugenue Zuev (drums) – released their debut album Architecture in 2018.
01. Billion Miles Away
04. On My Own
05. Adziny Šlach
06. My Hypocrisy
08. Perfect Reaction
10. Jupiter’s Master
The slightly delayed album will be officially released on 30th April 2021 through Audio Anatomy.
SOURCE: Mission Jupiter
23/04/2021: Frost* release animated video of Day And Age from the forthcoming album
Next month Frost* will release their first studio album in five years, the follow up to the well received Falling Satellites (2016). Day And Age is the band’s fourth release and sees Jem Godfrey teaming up once again with John Mitchell and Nathan King. The album also features drummers Pat Mastelotto, Kaz Rodriguez and Darby Todd. Today sees the release of the animated video for the single version of the title track…
Speaking about the album Jem Godfrey comments: “Day And Age is about how we have become a planet full of transmitters. Everyone has the power to convey their thoughts far and wide. However nobody is listening because they’re too busy transmitting.”
Last year Frost* released the career-retrospective collection 13 Winters, featuring all their studio albums to date, plus live material, b-sides & last years Others [EP]
Day And Age will be released on 14th May 2021 via InsideOut Music and will be available as Limited 2CD (inc bonus disc of instrumentals) | Gatefold 180g 2LP + CD | Digital.
22/04/2021: Giancarlo Erra to release returns with new album Departure Tapes
UK based Italian composer, multi-instrumentalist and visual artist Giancarlo Erra will release his new album Departure Tapes on 2nd July 2021 through Kscope. The first single to be taken from the new album is the extremely poignant and personal Departure Tape
The video dedicated to Erra’s father, he explains “This track was written I think when I came back from my first visit to Italy to see my father after he had been diagnosed. It really just began as a live experiment – born and finished within one afternoon. I remember I didn’t really want to do anything; I was exhausted and down, but then, when I started playing the track took shape. I discovered there was much more going on inside my head that needed to be faced. For me, music has been always the only way I can do that, and from this introspection ‘Departure Tape’ was born. It’s almost as a free subconscious stream of thoughts and feelings while recording everything that was happening.”
Departure Tapes is an album consisting of 6 contemplative recordings, written while travelling between the UK and Italy. The majority of these 6 tracks were improvised in the studio by Erra, so for the most part, are totally unique and hold a sincerity which cannot be replicated. It is the follow up to 2019’s acclaimed album Ends I-VII, with the new recordings reflecting what, has been an extremely difficult year for Giancarlo, with the loss of his father to cancer. Erra comments “In 2019 my first solo album was just being released, and I already had the view that I wanted to be more experimental with the second one, but no precise idea how at that point. Then my father suddenly got ill with cancer, and everything changed.”
Departure Tapesis scheduled for release on 2 July 2021 – you can find out more on Kscope website HERE
21/04/2021: Laura Meade to release new solo album next month
Laura Meade’s new studio album, The Most Dangerous Woman In America, scheduled for 21st May 2021 on Doone Records, follows up on her 2018 debut, Remedium. Today and ahead of the new album Laura Meade releases the Burned at the Stake video.
“This album was written to honor the forgotten: those whose stories remain untold, whose lives have been neutralized by those with unchecked power,” says Laura Meade.
From the pulsing forward-momentum of Leaving to the majesty of Iconoclast to the mystery and passion of Forgive Me, The Most Dangerous Woman in America explores the sincerity, emotion, and authenticity that so often lie beyond the gossip and sensationalism of fame and celebrity.
The Most Dangerous Woman in America, co-written with IZZ bandmate John Galgano between March and December of 2020, explores the story of a woman whose voice was silenced and whose story was all but forgotten by her own country. Joining Laura Meade on the album are IZZ members Tom Galgano (keyboards, production), Brian Coralian (V-Drums), John Galgano (bass).
Laura Meade comments: “As we wrote the music and lyrics for this album, John and I realized that the concept and story that inspired us was not just the story of one woman, but also the story of all of those who stay true to themselves regardless of the cost”.
“There have been so many people throughout history – many of them women – who stand up for themselves, stand up for what they believe in, and experience great pain and suffering for doing so, their memories and voices lost along the way to gossip and rumor. I hope that this album, in some small way, honors and gives voice to the forgotten.”
“This album was written to honor the forgotten: those whose stories remain untold, whose lives have been neutralized by those with unchecked power,”
Laura Meade’s new album features the songs Burned at the Stake and the title track, both available from 23 April 2021 on the IZZ Bandcamp Page and for streaming on Spotify.
SOURCE: Glass Onyon PR
21/04/2021: Emerson, Lake & Palmer: the official illustrated story in their own words
Although no exact date has been announced, the first official book about Emerson, Lake & Palmer will be released later in 2021 and will be published by Rocket 88. Carl Palmer spoke about the definitive Emerson, Lake & Palmer book in a recent video.
The Emerson, Lake & Palmer book is the collaborative affair with Carl Palmer and the families of the late Keith Emerson and Greg Lake. According to the official book site, the title was created from “over a quarter of a million words spoken by the musicians in original and unpublished interviews, recordings and films.” The book features “classic, rare, private and recently discovered photos of the men, the band and the world they created.”
The book, edited by Carl Palmer will be available in three deluxe editions. The Classic will be a large format 272 page, full-colour hardback, the Signature will include signed copies of the Classic, come in a bespoke presentation box and include extra, rare items, while the Ultimate will be very limited in number and content…
SOURCE: ELP Book
21/04/2021: Jim Steinman ~ RIP
“Jim Steinman, Hall of Fame songwriter and Grammy-winning record producer for Meat Loaf, Bonnie Tyler, Celine Dion, Barbra Streisand and others, has passed away due to ongoing health issues. Born November 1, 1947, in Hewlett, Long Island, he was 73 years old. In addition to his genre-defying contributions to music, Jim also leaves behind an important legacy in theater and music videos.
Throughout his five-decade career, Jim Steinman consistently defied the trend, permeating global pop culture with songs, music videos and phrases that have become part of the global zeitgeist. Steinman once described his songs as, “On the tightrope of being thrilling and silly.” In actuality, Steinman’s perfect equilibrium between emotional impact and comic relief made him unique.
Ignoring the boundaries separating artforms, Steinman’s style was reflected in his belief; “If you don’t go over the top, you can’t see what’s on the other side.” He was described by the LA Times as the “Richard Wagner of Rock and Roll” and is credited as “Father of the Power Ballad” for bringing theatrical rock-opera to the masses.”
Continue reading HERE.
RIP Jim Steinman ~ 1st November 1947 — 19th April 2021
SOURCE: Jim Steinman
20/04/2021: The Brainiac 5 salute fallen comrade on new anthology
Rejuvenated West Country prog band THE BRAINIAC 5 have had a clear-out of the closet and release a new compilation album next month.
With band activities curtailed by Covid, they took time to examine the various recordings they had in the vault to see what they could come up with. The result is the compilation album Another Time Another Dimension 1976 – 2020 which combines rare and unreleased material by their earliest line-ups combined with new recordings by the configuration of the band that recorded their most recent studio album Back To Shore.
Another Time Another Dimension is, in part, a tribute to their longtime friend, engineer and producer, former Hawkwind drummer Martin Griffin, who sadly passed away at the start of 2020.
“Martin and I were members of free festival favourites the Half Human Band in the early ‘70s,” says singer/guitarist Charlie Taylor. “We both moved to Cornwall at around the same time: Martin set up his recording studio in the village of Roche and I joined the Brainiacs in Penzance. Martin gave the Brainiacs free studio time which facilitated the recording of the Mushy Doubt EP, the ‘Working’ 7” and the World Inside LP. He drummed with the Brainiacs when our drummer was incapacitated and mixed the sound at many of our gigs in the West Country and London. He was the fifth member of the band, supporting us every step of the way.”
SOURCE: MuleFreedom PR
16/04/2021: Bob Lord’s debut solo album due for released
Producer, composer, Grammy nominee and 25-year veteran bassist with New Hampshire’s Dreadnaught, Bob Lord is to release his debut solo album, Playland Arcade, on 27th April 2021.
The album distils the various strands of Bob’s multiple musical careers into a single entity. taking in retro pop, electronica, improvised jazz, dextrous prog and orchestral compositions, played by regular collaborators the Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra.
Discussing the theme behind the album, Bob says: “For as long as I can remember, I’ve been visiting Hampton Beach on the New Hampshire seacoast. When I was a boy we would drive up and stroll along on the shore, eat fried dough, play table hockey at the arcade, and take in the sights and sounds of what was always to my young mind a satisfyingly strange, surreal, and sensational experience.
“It’s a place with a real history, in an area that has seen (or possibly seen?) everything from spaceships to witches, centuries-old massacres to mid-60s beach riots, vagrants to vacationers, and I always try to remember that I’m only witnessing it, like everything else, for a brief moment along a massive continuum. And I always wonder what will happen next.
“Now I live here in Hampton not too far from that beach, one of the biggest and most spectacular in our region, and this past Summer has been the first in my memory when I wasn’t able to visit Playland Arcade – my favorite place on the strip – to play Galaga and Centipede and complain about how I *again* got stuck with the crooked skee ball machine.”
Stack up those quarters, it’s going to be a blast!
SOURCE: Glass Onyon PR
12/04/2021: Theo Travis announces new solo album
Theo Travis announces the release of Songs from the Apricot Tree, his eleventh solo album, scheduled for release on 20 May 2021 (general release date via Amazon/Burning Shed/Bandcamp etc a little later on 1 June 2021)
Commenting on the album Theo says: “It is an eclectic mix of music featuring the Armenian duduk, an ancient instrument made of a single piece of wood from the apricot tree.” The first music released from the album is A Quiet Prayer, which sees Theo playing all instruments and joined by vocalist Gaddy Zerbib
“Recorded, mixed and mastered during lockdown, the album was recorded mainly in Theo’s own recording studio at his home, but with an international array of guest contributors – a percussionist from Venezuela, guitarists from the USA and South Africa, and some prestigious guests including King Crimson’s lead singer and second guitarist Jakko Jakszyk, Big Big Trains’s lead singer David Longdon and Theo’s bandmate from Soft Machine guitarist John Etheridge.”
“‘Songs from the Apricot Tree’ features original material combining meditative improvisations, songs, electronic textures and hypnotic drones all with the beautiful and mysterious sound of the duduk as the lead voice. Theo not only plays the duduk on all tracks which he has been studying for the last couple of years, but saxophones, flutes, piano, electronics, and keyboards. The album also includes imaginative re-workings of the song ‘Brilliant Trees’ by David Sylvian (who Travis recorded and toured with) the Peter Gabriel track ‘A Feeling Begins’ and the Gong track ‘Magdalene’.”
SOURCE: Theo Travis
11/04/2021: Lazuli’s Dominique Leonetti talks to TPA
A year ago you released a much acclaimed new studio album, Le Fantastique Envol de Dieter Böhm. Both the public and the press really liked the album. However, you haven’t included one single track from it on Dénudé, why is that?
We wanted to do it. I even recorded a pair of Dieter Böhm songs with an acoustic guitar. But in the end, we thought it was more important to bring older songs back to life.
Can you tell me something about the origin and recording of Dénudé, your very own lockdown album. Did COVID hinder you and did Arnaud fully participate in these recordings?
The idea started from the videos we posted during the lockdown. Songs that were necessarily acoustic and solitary because of the separations. When we were finally able to reunite together with Lazuli, we were happy but with something lacking and the irrepressible need to reconnect with our fans. The choice of intimate versions was imposed by itself, it was the best way to get closer to our listeners in these times of forced distancing, to share a kind of intimacy, like a sound to invade the silence, to fill the void. Without this context, I think this album would never have seen the light of day.
This particular project and this particular period proved that Arnaud could be the man for all situations… and all this while keeping a smile! He has fully participated but with humility; like all the members of the band, because recording stripped down versions requires a lot of modesty.
I know that he still has plenty of things to reveal, we are now really impatient to go on stage together.
[You can read Alex Driessen’s full interview with Dominique Leonetti HERE on TPA]
08/04/2021: Roger Waters – This Is Not A Drill rescheduled US and Canadian dates announced
This Is Not A Drill was originally scheduled for 2020, but postponed due to the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic. Today sees the official announcement for the summer of 2022 rescheduled US and Canadian dates.
Roger Waters comments: “This Is Not A Drill is a ground breaking new rock and roll/cinematic extravaganza, performed in the round, it is a stunning indictment of the corporate dystopia in which we all struggle to survive, and a call to action to LOVE, PROTECT and SHARE our precious and precarious planet home. The show includes a dozen great songs from PINK FLOYD’S GOLDEN ERA along side several new ones, words and music, same writer, same heart, same soul, same man. Could be his last hurrah. Wow! My first farewell tour! Don’t miss it.”
SOURCE: Roger Waters
07/04/2021: The Enid announce three UK shows in November
Following on from the announcement that The Enid had been confirmed to play on 21st August at this year’s A New Day Festival, held Mount Ephraim Gardens, Faversham, Kent – comes news of three more UK shows later in the year…
05/11/21: MANCHESTER, The Met
26/11/21: BIRMINGHAM, The Crescent
28/11/21: LONDON, Bush Hall
SOURCE: The Enid
06/04/2021: Kansas announce the departure of guitarist Zak Rizvi
In a brief statement Kansas reveal that guitarist Zakk Rizvi has resigned from the band. At this moment in time no replacement has been announced…
“The band Kansas announces that guitarist Zak Rizvi has resigned and that he looks forward to pursuing new projects.
We thank Zak for his many contributions throughout the years and we wish him well in his future endeavors.”
05/04/2021: Ian Anderson talks to TPA about the A La Mode: 40th Anniversary Edition Boxset, remixed by Steven Wilson
And so, as the 1980s dawned, Ian Anderson saw this as a good time to step away, temporarily, from the relative safety of the Jethro Tull umbrella and make his debut solo album. The album’s single-letter title refers to the studio tapes, which were marked “A” for Anderson. I spoke to Ian recently and he takes up the story.
“What set out to be a solo album, for me, turned into a Jethro Tull release because I, with regret, allowed my arm to be twisted behind my back by the good forces of Chrysalis Records. They were really acting, they thought, in my interests and their interests in trying to sell more records by making it a Jethro Tull album. They said that an Ian Anderson solo album is going to be a hard sell. So, I allowed myself to be pushed. I’ve always felt awkward, not consumed by, but tarnished by a degree of regret, that the album turned out to be marked by that scenario. That wasn’t, in my mind, the way it should have gone at the time. It just was my own folly, I suppose, in not sticking to my guns and saying ‘No, no, this is a solo project outside the orbit of Jethro Tull…’”
[You can read Geoff Ford’s full interview with Ian Anderson HERE on TPA]
06/04/2021: Metal Mind Productions announce the release of the new solo album by Ian Parry – Brute Force
After the successful worldwide release of Ian Parry’s 5th solo album “In Flagrante Delicto”, Ian now celebrates his 40th year as a professional singer songwriter with the release of his Rock Emporium 2 “Brute Force” album.
Alongside Ian Parry (Consortium Project/Elegy/Vengeance) are musicians/singers out the world of metal & members of well-known bands such as: Beth-Ami Heavenstone (Graham Bonnet band); Timo Somers (Delain); Martin Helmantel (Elegy); Barend Courbois (Blind Guardian); Allan Sorensen (Royal Hunt/Pretty Maids); Patrick Rondat (Jean-Michel Jarre/Consortium Project); Patrick Johansson & Svante Henryson (Malmsteen); Kris Gildenlöw (Pain of Salvation/Dial); Luca Sellitto (Stamina); Walter Cianciusi, Enrico Cianciusi & Dario Parente (Jeff Tate Band/Headless); Ivar De Graaf (Within Temptation/Kingfisher Sky); Bob Wijtsma (Ex Libris/Ayreon); Jeroen van der Wiel (Odyssice); Kalin Jechev (Rock Emporium 1). Special guest singers includes Wade Black (Crimson Glory/ Leatherwolf/ Seven Witches); Stefano Sbrignadello (Stamina) & Ani Lozanavo (Ani Lo Band) & Antonio Giorgio.
01. In Isolation
02. Darkest Secrets
03. ‘Til The Day I Die
04. My Confession
05. Brute Force
07. Lethal Injection
08. Rings of Fire
10. Where Do We Go From Here
Brute Force is scheduled for a Worldwide Release on 4th June 2021 (Metal Mind Productions)
SOURCE: Metal Mind Productions
05/04/2021: Focus to release Focus 50 – Live In Rio – 3CD/1Blu-ray Deluxe Edition
Cherry Red Records (in conjunction with Focus Records) announce that Focus will celebrate their 50th anniversary with the release of Focus 50 – Live In Rio, a 3CD/Blu-ray Deluxe Edition – scheduled for release on 30th April 2021. Recorded at recorded at Nitteroi, Rio de Janeiro in 2017
The slightly delayed 50th celebrations, a consequence of the coronavirus pandemic, has reeked havoc with the band’s touring schedule and also delayed the band’s new studio album, which will now be released in 2022.
Focus 50 – Live In Rio includes a bonus disc named “Completely Focussed”. This is all the Focus numbers 1 through 11 that the current line up re-recorded through lockdown.
“The collection provides fans an all-inclusive view of Focus. From the astounding live performance to the beautiful family feel of the bonus disc, this album shows Focus at the forefront of the Prog Rock scene.”
SOURCE: Cherry Red Records
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