I am back as years before, struggling to know if I missed any albums on this list, and the answer would be a resounding yes. Every year see thousands of releases just in the prog genre alone. It’s virtually impossible to discover and hear every prog release in any given year, so I did my best to showcase the cream of the crop, but then again I must point out these are one man’s points of view and will vary from publication and reviewer abroad. My taste in music is vast so I hope you all feel I have done justice by showcasing these 21 releases. The Un-qualified Critic
1)The Blue Door First full-length release by Candian Progressive jazz folk-rock act, A Gardening Club Project CD & Digital Melodic Revolution Records http://gardeningclubmusicandart.ca
2) The Uncrowned King (Act 1) The third release by US art-rock band, Evership CD & Digital Self-released https://www.evership.com
3) We Are The Truth Sixth studio album by Swedish progressive rock band, Hasse Fröberg & Musical Companion CD, LP & Digital Glassville Records https://www.hfmcband.com
4) Imperial Fifth album by progressive metal supergroup, Soen CD, LP & Digital Silver Lining Music https://soenmusic.com
11) The Absolute Universe Forevermore Fifth studio album by multinational progressive rock supergroup, Transatlantic CD, LP & Digital InsideOut (Europe) Metal Blade/Radiant (US) https://www.transatlanticweb.com
13) Presence Of Life Seventh album by Norwegian progressive folk group, Kerrs Pink CD, LP & Digital Self-released https://kerrspink.com
14) Forsaken Innocence Eight studio by UK-based Progressive Rock band, Drifting Sun CD, LP & Digital Self-released https://driftingsun.co.uk
15) Snakes & Angels The second release by US progessive metal artist, GorMusik Melodic Revolution Records CD & Digital https://gormusik.com
18) Playing House 2nd release by progressive art-rock band, Meer Karisma Records CD, LP & Digital http://meerband.com
19) The Forgotten Earth Debut solo release by Scarlet Hollow prog band bassist, Jeffrey Erik Mack Melodic Revolution Records CD & Digital https://www.jeffreyerikmack.com
16) Copeland King Cosmo & Blew, Gizmodrome Live First, live album and second release by progressive rock supergroup Gizmodrome formed in Italy Ear Music CD, LP & Digital https://www.facebook.com/Gizmodrome
17) A View From The Top Of The World Fifteenth studio release by US prog metal pioneers, Dream Theater Inside Out Music CD, LP & Digital https://dreamtheater.net
20) One to Zero Eleventh studio album German progressive rock band, Sylvan Gentle Art Of Music CD, LP & Digital http://www.sylvan.de/home/
21) Aphelion Eighth studio album by Norwegian progressive/avant-garde metal band, Leprous Inside Out Music CD, LP & Digital https://www.leprous.net
Melodic Revolution Records Is thrilled to announce the brand-new Joe Deninzon & Stratospheerius official music video “Storm Surge” featuring the vocal talents of Michael Sadler (SAGA) along with performances by Fernando Perdomo (Solo, Dave Kerzner), Ruti Celli (Take 3), Yulia Ziskel (New York Philharmonic Orchestra), last but not least… multi-award-winning Rachel Flowers.
The video will premiere Friday, October2nd, 2020 on YouTube the video will also be debut on Vimeo and will be a featured video on Power of Prog. The Single will be exclusively available Friday, October2nd, 2020 on Bandcampand on Patreononly, following the worldwide digital distribution on October 23rd, 2020
….”as stated by Joe Deninzon” A little over a year ago, my son Max was playing a short piano piece by 19th-century composer Friedrich Burgmüller, called “The Storm.” The piece was stuck in my head because I would hear him practicing it every day. I started to imagine it as a rock power ballad and began to sketch out a slowed-down version with the basic chord changes and structure.
I was imagining a cello replacing the ostinato part played by the left hand on the piano, so I asked my friend Ruti Celli, who I met on Cruise to the Edge last year when we played with Dave Kerzner and In Continuum, to contribute her beautiful part.
Our drummer, Jason Gianni, had a sketch he never finished that he thought would be a perfect fit in the middle of the song. I layered a huge string orchestra on top of that section and recruited the great guitarist/producer Fernando Perdomo to lay down a soaring guitar solo.
Next, I was hearing a flute during the breakdown section that followed. We have never had a flute, or any woodwinds for that matter, on one of our recordings! I asked the genius multi-instrumentalist Rachel Flowers to play the flute and lay down a piano track for the song. Rachel has been blind since age 3 and plays piano, flute, bass, guitar, drums, stick, sings, and records and mixes her own albums! I’ve met and worked with a lot of gifted people in my career, but don’t think I have ever met a person with this level of talent! Check out the documentary about her, Hearing is Believing, on Amazon Prime.
Finally, I’ve been into the idea of using outside singers in Stratospheerius. Up until his time, I have always been the lead vocalist. The new album we are slowly putting together will feature many special guests. We’ve been longtime fans of the 80’s Canadian band SAGA best known for hits like “Wind Him Up” and “On The Loose.” When we played at the ProgStock Festival afterparty back in 2018, Saga’s lead singer Michael Sadlercaught our set after his performance at the festival, and was raving about the band! We were incredibly humbled to receive such words of encouragement from such an iconic artist.
We felt Michael’s voice would be perfect for this song! He ended up contributing a jaw-dropping vocal performance, enhancing the melody, and adding Queenesque harmonies. As a side note, he and his wife Gwen turned out to be some of the nicest and most gracious people I have ever worked with.
“Storm Surge” is about the anxiety we all feel in these uncertain times. With the global pandemic, the fight against racism and the continuing struggle for social justice, climate change, political upheaval, economic turmoil, and a future of uncertainty, there is a storm that’s raging inside of us right now.
Stratospheerius is: Joe Deninzon – lead vocals/electric violin Jason Gianni- drums Michelangelo Quirinale – guitar Paul Ranieri – bass
Special Performances on Storm Surge Video and Single Michael Sadler – Vocals Rachel Flowers – Keys and Flute Yulia Ziskel – Violin RutiCelli – Cello Fernando Perdomo – Guitar
Tracked by Rave Tesar (Renaissance) Mixed and mastered by Rich Mouser (Spocks Beard, Dream Theater)
The Night of the Prog festival is showcased at The Loreley Amphitheater is a UNESCO World Heritage and holds legendary ROCKPALAST shows in the 70s and 80s. On the hill of the River Rhine, it is located between Frankfurt and Cologne in Germany. Since 2006 the Night of the Prog Festival is happening at the legendary rock.
Featured bands and artists over the last years were: Dream Theater, Eloy, IQ, Riverside, Jethro Tull, Asia, Anathema, Steven Wilson, Spock’s Beard, Arena, Pendragon, Tangerine Dream, Fish, Steve Hackett, Marillion and many more.
VOYAGER IV will perform Sunday, 19th July at Night of the Prog 2020 promoting their current release Pictures at an Exhibition
The classic piano-cycle “Pictures At An Exhibition” by Modest Mussorgsky from 1874 was only the start of an exciting musical journey. VOYAGER IV then just stop along the way at 70ies supergroup ELP (Emerson, Lake & Palmer), who reworked three of Mussorgsky’s “pictures” for their album “Pictures At An Exhibition” back in 1971.
Arriving in the 21st century, those three and further five of the “pictures” can be found on VOYAGER IV’s most recent album and live shows, reworked with vocals and virtuous instrumentation. London based producer Jon Caffrey is responsible for the fresh sound design.
They have a stunning light show, special and rarely seen instruments and they create a mix of cosmic space rock sounds and vocal arrangements plus instrumental passages. VOYAGER IV is one of the most exciting cross-over projects within the prog genre. Singer and songwriter Johannes Kuchta also has a stunning voice, that reminds fans of Peter Gabriel, Greg Lake, Phil Collins or Fish.
“Really enjoyed the new album! Some very bold and adventurous avenues taken with Modest Mussorgsky. I always enjoy listening to someone’s interpretations of otherwise well-known themes. I like that fact that you incorporated those ideas in your own way and varied them enough to make it your own. Well done!”
Marc Bonilla (recorded 4 albums with Keith Emerson)
Dream Theater’s Jordan Rudess has released his brand new spiralling solo album ‘Wired for Madness’ via Music Theories Recordings / Mascot Label Group.
Jordan has this to say about his solo album, “I’m excited to share my solo album, Wired for Madness, with you. It’s been a long while since I’ve released a solo rock album. I’ve had a lot of inspiration building up inside of me and finally found the time in between Dream Theater recording and touring and making music apps to create this album. Here is a teaser and links to the lyric videos.”
‘Wired for Madness’ bursts and flows forth with all of the drama, technique and melodicism that have become his musical hallmarks. The album also features the keyboard wizard handling many of the vocals. Renowned guests including drummers Marco Minnemann, Rod Morgenstein and Elijah Wood, Dream Theater frontman James LaBrie, guitarists John Petrucci, Vinnie Moore, Guthrie Govan, Joe Bonamassa and Alec Darson, as well vocalists, Brothers Page and Marjana Semkina and bassist, Jonas Reingold.
KEYBOARDIST/MULTI-INSTRUMENTALIST EXTRAORDINAIRE JORDAN RUDESS, MEMBER OF PLATINUM-SELLING, GRAMMY-NOMINATED BAND, DREAM THEATER, EMBARKS ON A THREE-CONTINENT SOLO PIANO TOUR
Jordan Rudess From Bach To Rock Tour Reviews Are In!
Rudess combines consummate craft, imagination, an homage to history, and humor, into something you haven’t experienced before.
From the opening notes to the closing, it was totally absorbing.
At least some parts of his personality and past are a surprise to even the most passionate Dream Theater fans in the audience.
Jordan Rudess’ ability is nothing short of miraculous
NEW YORK (October 10, 2018) – Voted “Best Keyboardist of All Time” (Music Radar Magazine), virtuoso musician/composer Jordan Rudess, will embark on a 3-continent solo piano tour FROM BACH TO ROCK featuring the music of Dream Theater reimagined for the piano. Rudess’ solo piano concerts have been selling out venues throughout the US and Europe for the past year. This tour will begin on November 12 with performances in Japan, Taibei and Singapore followed by 7 shows in Australia and New Zealand and 5 shows in Argentina, Chile and Brazil. Many of the venues are offering VIP packages which will provide fans with an intimate experience with Rudess at the piano.
Jordan Rudess explains the tour, “Many of my fans only know me as a progressive rock keyboardist but piano is where it all started for me. Sitting at the piano has always felt like the most natural way for me to express my musicality. This tour is bringing me to some of the biggest and most exciting markets for Dream Theater. I’m really excited to return to these countries and share this acoustic evening with some of the most supportive fans in the world.”
“Calling Jordan Rudess a legend is an understatement” — Keyboard Magazine
Rudess’ solo concert will travel through his fascinating musical journey – how a young Juilliard piano prodigy destined for a classical music career evolved into a keyboard rock star phenomenon.
“Jordan Rudess has journeyed from the depths of tradition to the ever-expanding outer limits of musical possibility, inviting listeners along for the ride. The results are, unsurprisingly, consistently beyond world-class.” The Musical Melting Pot
Tour dates and ticket links can be accessed at: www.Jordanrudess.com
BACH TO ROCK ASIA, AUSTRALIA, SOUTH AMERICA TOUR
11/12/18 – Tokyo, Japan
11/14/18 – Osaka, Japan
11/17/18 – Taibei, Taiwan – Korg Clinic
11/17/18 – Taibei, Taiwan
11/19/18 – Singapore
11/21/18 – Brisbane, Australia
11/22/18 – Adelaide, Australia
11/23/18 – Melbourne, Australia
11/25/18 – Auckland, New Zealand
11/27/18 – Sydney, Australia
11/28/18 – Canberra, Australia
12/2/18 – Buenos Aires, Argentina
12/4/18 – Santiago, Chile
12/6/18 – Sao Paolo, Brazil
12/9/18 – Belo Horizonte, Brazil
12/10/18 – Rio, Brazil
Voted “Best Keyboardist of All Time” (Music Radar Magazine), Jordan Rudess is best known as the keyboardist/multi-instrumentalist extraordinaire for platinum-selling Grammy- nominated prog rock band, Dream Theater. He trained at the world-renowned Juilliard School of Music, where he first studied as a child prodigy at age nine. As a teen, he defected to synthesizers in a classic act of rock ’n’ roll rebellion. In 1994, Keyboard readers voted him “best new talent,” and since then has become the universally acknowledged heir to the shredding throne of such prog-rock royalty as Keith Emerson and Rick Wakeman. He is renowned for his unique fusion of classical technique and influences with rock sensibilities.
In addition to playing in Dream Theater, Jordan has worked with a wide range of artists including David Bowie, Jan Hammer, Enrique Iglesias, the Paul Winter Consort, Annie Haslam, LMR, his side project with Tony Levin and Marco Minneman, Liquid Tension Experiment, Steven Wilson, Aviv Geffen, the Dixie Dregs, Rod Morgenstein, and Tony Williams, among others. Jordan’s interest in state-of-the-art keyboard controllers and music apps are another area of his career in which he has achieved success. Jordan owns the successful App development company Wizdom Music, creators of award-winning apps such as MorphWiz, SampleWiz, and Geo Synthesizer. Wizdom Music’s latest app, GeoShred, was created in collaboration with moForte, founding members of Stanford University’s Sondius team. For more: jordanrudess.com wizdommusic.com.
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