World acclaimed keyboardist Derek Sherinian, (Sons of Apollo, Black Country Communion), one of the most significant keyboard players of the modern era, recently announced the release of his new solo album ‘The Phoenix’ on September 18th, 2020, his first since 2011’s ‘Oceana’. Derek comments: “I truly feel that this is my best solo record to date. Simon Phillips and I put a lot of energy into the writing, and I am grateful to all of the great players that contributed to this recording.”
Today he launches the video for his cover of the Buddy Miles classic ‘Them Changes’, featuring Joe Bonamassa on guitar and vocals. Watch the video now
The album’s first single, Empyrean Sky, which features Sherinian and drummer Simon Phillips joined by Ron ‘Bumblefoot’ Thal on guitar & Jimmy Johnson on bass, and was called a “marvellous voyage of instrumental virtuosity” by Guitar World. Listen now here: https://youtu.be/twHB7YVEXgwAs mentioned, Sherinian has teamed up with drummer extraordinaire Simon Phillips, who not only plays drums but also co-produced and co-wrote the album:“It is always an amazing experience to be able to work with Simon. He’s been a hero of mine for ages, ever since I heard him playing on albums with Jeff Beck and Michael Schenker. And he is such an invaluable part of the way this new record has come out.”
There are a number of top line guests featured on ‘The Phoenix’, as has been the case in the past for Sherinian, on both guitar and bass. Some have become regular contributors to his solo sessions. People such as bassists Tony Franklin (“He’s been on all my albums to date”), Jimmy Johnson and Billy Sheehan (Sherinian’s bandmate in Sons Of Apollo). Plus guitarists Joe Bonamassa and Zakk Wylde. In addition, others are welcomed into the fold for the first time. For instance, there’s master guitarist Steve Vai. “Steve Vai has always been on my hit list. But it was when I played keyboards on the Generation Axe tour of Asia in 2017 that I asked him to play on my record, which he gladly accepted” Also present are Sons Of Apollo bandmate Ron ‘Bumblefoot’ Thal (Sons Of Apollo) and Kiko Loureiro (Megadeth). “Kiko and I have known one another for about 20 years. But this is the first time I’ve had the opportunity to play with him.”
Album. Find the full track-listing below:
1. The Phoenix 2. Empyrean Sky 3. Clouds of Ganymede 4. Dragonfly 5. Temple of Helios 6. Them Changes 7. Octopus Pedigree 8. Pesadelo
The album features 8 tracks, including a cover of Buddy Miles ‘Them Changes’, and will be released as a Limited Edition Digipak CD, 180g LP + CD & as Digital
Derek Sherinian’s far ranging talents have been much in evidence through the music of Alice Cooper (who once called him “The Caligula of keyboards”), Dream Theater, Black Country Communion and current band Sons Of Apollo. Moreover, proving just how much he is demand to work with rock royalty, Sherinian has also toured and recorded extensively with KISS, and Billy Idol, proving his classic and hard rock pedigree, whilst also being voted #9 in Prog Magazines greatest keyboardists of all time.
Sweden’s Pain of Salvation move another step closer to the release of their upcoming new studio album “PANTHER”, due out August 28th, 2020 worldwide via InsideOutMusic.
Today, the Progressive Metal/Rock innovators launch their new single “RESTLESS BOY”, to be checked out in stunning video scripted/directing by Lars Ardarve and Daniel Gildenlöw and filmed/edited by Lars Ardarve, to be seen here:
Pain of Salvation’s Daniel Gildenlöw commented about the song and video as follows:
“We are happy and proud to present to you our newest video, for the song ‘RESTLESS BOY’, our second single from the upcoming album ‘PANTHER’. Once again, we have worked together with the wonderful and skilful Lars Ardarve, and we had a great time, as always. It’s so rewarding to work together with someone who you know so well since way back and with whom you share a similar mindset and creative drive, and we are all so happy with the result.
Since the video also includes a stage setup, we got to hook up with our amazing crew for the first time in way too long, so it was in many ways the closest we have come to touring this year. Just as with the ‘ACCELERATOR’ video, we shot parts of this video in Skjulstahallen (Eskilstuna), and want to send lots of love and kudos to Lotta Nilsson at IKEG for helping us to arrange this!
‘RESTLESS BOY’ may not be the most expected or given second single, but it felt important to give it that space, because of all that it is. And despite it’s few components, it is a grower. Live with it for a while and you’ll see. Also, it was a song for which a video idea just came to me so naturally. A video where every scene would be a play with time and speed. Experienced time versus reality. That feeling that has been with me through my entire life – that time is emotionally flexible and suddenly just bends around your mind and thoughts.
You see, ‘RESTLESS BOY’ is about myself and everyone else out there who feel that we are going through life at a different speed than our contexts and surroundings. Passion oriented people who daydream and shift pace depending on situation. F1 cars failing to meet the expectations of our small suburban community. Goal rationalists in a method rationalistic system. Panthers in a dog’s world.
This song grew out of the song ‘Full Throttle Tribe’, just like the entire ‘PANTHER’ album did in many ways. The tribe that fills every page of every history book that you have ever read. The spectrum people. The brilliant, the crazy, the fools, the gifted and the troubled. The beautiful restless boys and girls!
The filming was intense and a lot of fun. Long hours and very little sleep. I specifically remember the second day of filming, when we shot all the scenes in the car with Léo driving. I had edited a version of the song that went to half speed between every vocal phrase, so that we could speed up the video between phrases. I heard that odd version of the song so many times that it increasingly started to feel like the normal version. (Lars actually got very hooked on that version, so I might have to make him a special mix.) Anyway, after a long day of sitting in the car and singing while we passed by the different scenes we had set up with Sandrian and Gabriel in dog masks outside the car window (they likely did not feel all that comfortable standing in dog masks in central Eskilstuna, holding an umbrella, but they were troopers), we needed some city night shots, so we headed for Stockholm. I still wonder what that one pedestrian was thinking, looking into our car as we stopped at a red-light well past midnight and I was throwing myself back and forth in the backseat wearing a german shepherd rubber mask that I was apparently trying to get off. Whatever he was thinking, he is probably still thinking it. That’s simply not one of those images you can get off your retinas easily. 🙂
We really hope you like this video – we do, and we are very proud of it. We can’t wait for the world to ease back into something close enough to normality for touring to be possible again. Meanwhile, find comfort in these videos/singles and the upcoming album, and know that due to the lack of touring, a silver lining is that we can keep writing and recording even more new music for you all. Until we meet the next time!”
Previously, the album’s opening track/single “ACCELERATOR” was launched in a video, also scripted/directing by Lars Ardarve and Daniel Gildenlöw and filmed/edited by Lars Ardarve, here: https://youtu.be/5QKmOJl4GXQ
“PANTHER”, the follow-up release to 2017’s “In The Passing Light Of Day” album, was recorded, mixed and produced by Daniel Gildenlöw with Daniel Bergstrand (In Flames, Meshuggah, Devin Townsend) and comes with a comprehensive artwork-theme with illustrations made by André Meister.
Pain of Salvation – ‘PANTHER’: 1. ACCELERATOR 2. UNFUTURE 3. RESTLESS BOY 4. WAIT 5. KEEN TO A FAULT 6. FUR 7. PANTHER 8. SPECIES 9. ICON
Next to the standard CD and the Digital Album formats, ”PANTHER” will also be available as limited 2CD Mediabook (Including expanded artwork and the following 4 bonus tracks on a separate disc: “PANTHER (demo)”, “KEEN TO A FAULT (demo)”, “FIFI GRUFFI” and “UNFOREVER”) and as 180g. Gatefold 2LP (Including the 4 bonus tracks on Side D and album on CD as bonus), in the following variations:
Black vinyl – Unlimited Deep blood red vinyl – 100x copies from IOM Webshop Europe Transparent blue vinyl – 300x copies from CM Distro Transparent green vinyl – 200x copies from EMP Lilac vinyl – 200x copies from JPC White vinyl – 200x copies from Pain of Salvation Transparent yellow vinyl – 100x copies from Pain of Salvation
Look out for more news about Pain of Salvation and “PANTHER” soon…
Pain of Salvation line-up: Daniel Gildenlöw – lead vocals and lots of stuff Johan Hallgren – guitar and vocals Léo Margarit – drums and vocals Daniel Karlsson – keyboards, guitars and vocals Gustaf Hielm – bass and vocals
Pain of Salvation discography: Entropia –1997 One Hour by the Concrete Lake – 1998 The Perfect Element, Part I – 2000 Remedy Lane – 2002 12:5 – 2004 BE – 2004 BE DVD – 2005 Scarsick – 2007 Ending Themes DVD – 2009 Linoleum EP – 2009 Road Salt One – 2010 Road Salt Two – 2011 Falling Home – 2014 Remedy Lane Re:visited (Re:mixed & Re:lived) – 2016 In the Passing Light of Day – 2017 PANTHER – 2020
Neal Morse recently announced the release of ‘Sola Gratia’, his new solo progressive rock concept album, for September 11th, 2020. Originating from a seed planted in his mind about writing a record based on the apostle Paul, ‘Sola Gratia’ quickly came together at the beginning of 2020. The album sees Neal working with long-time collaborators Mike Portnoy, Randy George, Eric Gillette, Bill Hubauer and Gideon Klein.
Today sees the launch of the first single ‘In The Name Of The Lord’, and you can watch the video now here:
Neal comments: “As I was gathering a bunch of random ideas in February for this album, when I got home and started to put it together, the riff that starts this song was the very first thing I recorded. I couldn’t play the riff and sing at the same time so I wrote it separately. The chorus came from some ideas I had while early morning walking in Sydney, Australia.
“Sola Gratia is the only album Mike, Randy and I made remotely and I think they absolutely killed it!
“Lyrically, I am fascinated by the conversion of Saul of Tarsus to Paul the Apostle. The fact the he starts off persecuting christians and then becomes the guy who writes most of the New Testament is a rich story..there’s so much to it…it may become a series!”
The title ‘Sola Gratia’ of course has echoes of Morse’s 2007 epic ‘Sola Scriptura’, about the life of Martin Luther, but was in fact originally the result of a simple marital misunderstanding: “I was talking to my wife Cherie about debuting this new piece at Morsefest 2020 (Morse’s annual fan convention in Nashville) and she said she thought it would be good for me to do a solo album. However, I thought she said ‘Sola album’ and – because some of the new ideas involved Paul’s aggressive pursuit of the early Christians, I could see a link to some of the themes of persecution in ‘Sola Scriptura’.”
The music was recorded ‘virtually’ in April 2020 at the height of the Coronavirus lockdown with long term collaborators Mike Portnoy (drums) and Randy George (bass): “It’s the first album we have ever made remotely: I sent them the basic tracks and asked if they wanted to rearrange things, but they just said ‘No, it’s great!’, so they just played to it and sent their parts back over. It wasn’t an easy way to make an album, but creating always has its challenges, no matter how you do it.”
As Morse explains, it was this process that decided that ‘Sola Gratia’ was to be a Neal Morse album, rather than being credited to The Neal Morse Band: “With the Neal Morse Band, the whole band works together on the writing, and while Eric Gillette plays some guitar and Bill Hubauer has added some keyboards on this one, neither of them wrote – or is singing – on this album.”
The full track-listing is as follows:
1.Preface 2.Overture 3.In The Name Of The Lord 4.Ballyhoo (The Chosen Ones) 5.March Of The Pharisees 6.Building A Wall 7.Sola Intermezzo 8.Overflow 9.Warmer Than The Sunshine 10.Never Change 11.Seemingly Sincere 12.The Light On The Road To Damascus 13.The Glory Of The Lord 14.Now I Can See/The Great Commission
‘Sola Gratia’ will be released as a limited CD/DVD Digipak (featuring a ‘Making-Of’ documentary), Gatefold 2LP + CD, Standard CD Jewel Case and as a Digital Album. The cover art was created by another longtime collaborator, Thomas Ewerhard.
Neal Morse will debut ‘Sola Gratia’ live at his annual Morsefest convention on the 18th and 19th September 2020. A very limited number of people will be able to attend in person, with the event also being streamed online. More details and tickets are available here: https://nealmorse.com/tc-events/morsefest-2020/
Lonely Robot, the project masterminded by producer, guitarist and singer/songwriter John Mitchell (Kino, Frost*, Arena, It Bites), released their fourth album ‘Feelings Are Good’ on Friday, a fresh start following the conclusion of the ‘The Astronaut Trilogy’.
Today sees the launch of the video for the track ‘Keeping People As Pets’, once again created by Crystal Spotlight. Watch it now here:
John comments of the new album: “‘Feelings Are Good’ is a bit of a departure from the first three Lonely Robot albums or ‘The Astronaut Trilogy’ as it has now lovingly become known. On ‘Feelings Are Good’, I wanted to explore more personal themes and the songs are very much about individual experiences and narratives that I believe had been the cornerstones, good and bad, to my life. The long tall and short of it is that we’re back on planet Earth, and I have a personal lyrical axe to grind!”
‘Feelings Are Good’ is available as a Limited Edition CD Digipak, Gatefold 2LP+CD and as Digital Album in both 16 & 24 bit versions (all including 2 bonus tracks). The artwork is once again by Paul Tippett / Vitamin P (Black Star Riders, Frost*), and John says of the cover: “The artwork is meant to be a little disturbing. The closed eyes and taped over mouth are supposed to represent how people are very guarded with their emotions and what better way of emoting them than through the windows to the soul and the smile?” Order now here: https://lonelyrobot.lnk.to/Feelingsaregood
The full track-listing is as follows: 1.Feelings Are Good 2.Into The Lo-Fi 3.Spiders 4.Crystalline 5.Life Is A Sine Wave 6.Armour For My Heart 7.Suburbia 8.The Silent Life 9.Keeping People As Pets 10.Army Of One 11.Grief Is The Price Of Love 12.The Silent Life (Orchestral Version) 13.Crystalline (Orchestral Version)
Lonely Robot will hit the road in December 2020 for some select headline dates, and you can find a list of those below: Dec 13th Islington Assembly Hall, London, UK Dec 16th Riff, Bochum, GER Dec 17th Das Rind, Rüsselsheim, GER Dec 18th Muziekgieterij, Maastricht, NL Dec 20th De Boerderij, Zoetermeer, NL
John comments: “It has always been an ambition of mine to have a full length visual accompaniment alongside an album of music I have written. With Under Stars and the help of Miles at Crystal Spotlight, this dream was finally realised last year. I’m very proud of the results and I’d like to thank Miles for all his hard work and patience in bringing this to fruition. I hope you enjoy it.”
John Mitchell is a man with a rich musical heritage and history – from musician and vocalist, to songwriter and producer. With bands like Arena, Frost*, Kino, It Bites and Lonely Robot, to name but a few, Mitchell has left his mark on the current progressive rock scene and has been involved in dozens of recordings. He is also a respected producer & mixer, running Outhouse Studios in the UK and working with artists as diverse as You Me At Six, Enter Shikari, Alter Bridge, Asia, Don Broco, Funeral For A Friend, McFly & much more.
Prog Legends Gentle Giant reunite for new version of “Proclamation” premiered by PROG Magazine
The classic Gentle Giant line-up has reunited for the first time since 1980 for a unique new video. Pieced together over the last few months, it’s a brand new performance of “Proclamation” (originally from the band’s 1974 album “The Power & The Glory”) including appearances from Gentle Giant alumni Derek, Ray and Phil Shulman, Gary Green, Kerry Minnear, John Weathers and Malcolm Mortimore. There are also guest appearances by numerous notable musicians including Jakko Jakszyk (King Crimson), Billy Sherwood (YES), Lee Pomeroy (ELO/Steve Hackett), Dan Reed (Dan Reed Network), Richard Hilton (Chic) and Mikey Heppner (Priestess).
“This terrible pandemic is being felt all over the world and with everyone being stuck at home, I figured now would be the perfect time to bring positivity out in the world, bring everyone together and celebrate our love of music and Gentle Giant,” explains Noah Shulman, son of Derek and mastermind behind this project tp Dom Lawson of PROG Magazine. “Over the years I was always amazed with how many people were filming their renditions of Gentle Giant tracks from all over the world on an array of instruments. So that sparked the idea of wanting to see them all in one place, blending sounds and instruments into a single track.”
Directed and edited by Noah Shulman and mixed by his uncle Ray, the video is likely to be remembered most for the momentous reuniting of the real Gentle Giant, albeit only briefly and via to the wonders of remote communication. Seeing that the band have never seemed likely to reform, this is a significant and exciting moment for Gentle Giant fans everywhere. Says Noah, “It’s a sort of thank you from the band to the fans.”
First album track, “Future History”, to be released on Friday 10th July 2020. Video directed by Nigel Dick (Guns N’ Roses, Def Leppard).
Forthcoming new album “DarWin 2: A Frozen War” featuring Simon Phillips (Toto/The Who/Jeff Beck), Matt Bissonette (Elton John, David Lee Roth, Ringo Starr), Billy Sheehan (Mr Big/ Steve Vai/Winery Dogs), Guthrie Govan (Aristocrats/Asia/Hans Zimmer/Steven Wilson), Greg Howe (Michael Jackson/Justin Timberlake), Derek Sherinian (Dream Theater/Alice Cooper/Black Country Communion)
Following the release of debut album “Origin Of Species” in early 2019, DarWin releases a new single, “Nightmare Of My Dreams”, on the 14th August 2020.
The epic 7 plus minute “Nightmare Of My Dreams” builds on the themes set out by DarWin on “Origin Of Species”.
The announcement of the first single will coincide with the release of the first album track, “Future History”.
Both songs are taken from the forthcoming album, “DarWin 2: A Frozen War”, which will be released later in 2020.
Once more DarWin has assembled a stunning ensemble of musicians. “DarWin 2: A Frozen War” continues the deep collaboration with Simon Phillips (drums, Toto/The Who/Jeff Beck) and Matt Bissonette (Elton John, David Lee Roth, Ringo Starr). Joining them are powerhouse players Billy Sheehan (bass, Mr Big/ Steve Vai/Winery Dogs), Guthrie Govan (guitar, Aristocrats/Asia/Hans Zimmer/Steven Wilson), Greg Howe (guitar, Michael Jackson/Justin Timberlake), Derek Sherinian (keyboards, Dream Theater/Alice Cooper/Black Country Communion) and more…
“Darwin 2: A Frozen War” was produced by DarWin and Simon Phillips and recorded primarily in Iceland and the USA.
DarWin says, “We started working on DarWin 2: A Frozen War while still finishing Origin of Species. This new album is therefore more like a final chapter to OoS. The title song “A Frozen War” represents the final battle for the future of Earth. It has a heavier feel than the first album, and I think represents our best stuff.
“We shifted live recording to Iceland and Billy Sheehan joined us on bass in the studio while Matt was often traveling with Elton John. We’re also joined on the album by Guthrie Govan, Greg Howe and Derek Sherinian doing killer leads, and many more players that are super exciting.
“This first song we’re releasing, “Future History” is about traveling faster than lightspeed and therefore going back in time. It’s a real chuggy jam song that should rock hard. Matt’s thick harmonies soar over the heavy grooves to provide a sensation of flying next to a ray of light and watching your life pass before you. It was great to jam with Billy and Simon on this and trade licks with Greg in the solo section. Check it out!”
The first release “Future History” also features a video directed by the legendary Nigel Dick (Guns N Roses/Band Aid/Def Leppard/Britney Spears)
Watch the Videohere
DarWin’s critically acclaimed debut “Origin Of Species” was the first installment in an epic saga that addresses the challenges of mankind in our coming era. It depicts the role of a changing planet, and the potential, as well as limitations, of technology to help solve mankind’s greatest challenges. A complex project that’s eschews the hollow immediacy of much contemporary art. A story that demands attention and imagination. With music sweeping in scope, at times evoking hard rock virtuoso shredding, alongside grand orchestral compositions, warm harmonies and soaring choruses. A project that is even more relevant in the strange times we live in.
“At the end of it all, DarWin has saved the concept album as well as the planet.” – Classic Rock review of debut album “Origin Of Species”
“…a smorgasbord of styles, dripping in YES pomp, melodic pop and riffy modern day rock” – Prog Magazine review of debut album “Origin Of Species”
“DarWin 2: A Frozen War” is released later in 2020. “Nightmare Of My Dreams” will be released on the 14th of August 2020. It will feature an exciting narrative video, also directed by Nigel Dick
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