Following the success of four highly-praised albums with Iamthemorning, the lyricist, singer and co-songwriter Marjana Semkina releases her spellbinding debut solo album, Sleepwalking on 14th February 2020 through Kscope. The album will be released under an alternative spelling – Mariana Semkina.
Characterized by her composed and unique voice, complex melodic lines and poetic lyrics with literary references, Semkina has often compared favorably with Kate Bush. The new material draws from the Iamthemorning soundscape but exists fully in Marjana’s world; a compelling mixture of alternative folk, pop, drama, beauty, and emotionally purging lyrics.
Marjana explains the motivation behind releasing a solo album “It wasn’t my plan to ascribe any profound meaning or concept to creating Sleepwalking, its purpose was more personally therapeutic, it was supposed just to help me get through some dark times, and at the end of that period in my life I found myself, not only renewed but with a collection of songs that were too personal to release under any other name other than my own.”
She continues “I wanted to use Sleepwalking as a way to translate emotions in the most sincere and unrefined way. No sugarcoating, no filters, just creative, honest thought caught in the moment. Turning those dark times and feelings into pure creative energy, something beautiful, something that has a purpose”
Sleepwalking is a musical blend akin to the darker folk of Aldous Harding, Marissa Nadler, Sumie and Florist. To aid her vision for Sleepwalking, Marjana invited renowned keyboardist, drummer and bassist Jordan Rudess (Dream Theater), Craig Blundell and Nick Beggs (Steven Wilson), as well as the St. Petersburg Orchestra “1703” and frequent collaborator Vlad Avy.
Marjana is teasing fans with a glimpse into what to expect with this trailer featuring four songs from Sleepwalking – “Am I Sleeping Or Am I Dead”, “Invisible”, “Turn Back Time”, “Mermaid Song” and “Still Life”.
The stunning album artwork makes reference to Semkina’s love for classical art, unifying photography with the 17th-Century Vanitas movement; “I am a big lover of classical art, and with this cover, I wanted to create some sort of a unity between medium of photography and the Vanitas art movement, a genre of still life painting. The paintings of the genre usually contain collections of objects symbolic of the inevitability of death and the transience and vanity of earthly achievements and pleasures; it exhorts the viewer to consider mortality, which is extremely close to where this album came from.”
1. Dark Matter 2. Am I Sleeping Or Am I Dead 3. Turn Back Time 4. Ars Longa Vita Brevis 5. Invisible 6. Lost At Sea 7. Skin 8. How to Be Alone 9. Everything Burns 10. Mermaid Song11. Still Life
Strings Ensemble: St.Petersburg Orchestra “1703” (Санкт-Петербургский Оркестр 1703)
Vocals recorded by Mark Knight Guitars on all tracks & drums on 8 & 9 recorded by Vlad Avy Drums on 3 & 7 recorded by Craig Blundell Bass guitar on 3 & 7 recorded by Nick Beggs Bass guitar on 8 & 9 recorded by Grigoriy Losenkov Strings recorded by Fedor Naumov at LenDoc Studios, St.Petersburg
All songs were written by Marjana Semkina String arrangements by Grigoriy Losenkov All songs arranged by Vlad Avy, Grigoriy Losenkov, Marjana Semkina Except 2, 5, 8 (Grigoriy Losenkov) and 3, 6 (Vlad Avy) Produced by Vlad Avy, Grigoriy Losenkov, Marjana Semkina Mixed & mastered by Vlad Avy
Cover photography by Eggor Kree, Booklet photography by Maria Yureva Construction of curiosities by Doppelgangerart
The Flower Kings – announce; Iamthemorning & Rikard Sjöblom to replace Kayak on EU tour
Progressive rock legends THE FLOWER KINGS are due to hit the road in December in support of their latest album ‘Waiting For Miracles’ (out 8th November 2019), and unfortunately touring partners Kayak have been forced to drop out of the tour due to unexpected health issues. Joining the tour as replacements will be Russian chamber prog band Iamthemorning who recently released their new studio album, as well as Rikard Sjöblom – known for his work in Beardfish, Gungfly & Big Big Train.
Roine Stolt of The Flower Kings comments: “We bring news regarding the upcoming Flower Kings tour of December – the Dutch classic band Kayak, who was initially to be our touring partner has had to pull out, due to serious and unexpected medical conditions of main guy Ton Scherpenzeel. We are all sad about this but wish for a speedy recovery and perhaps another chance to share the stage later on. The brighter news is that we’ve managed to get the brilliant band Iamthemorning, singer Marjana Semkina and pianist Gleb Kolyadin & band, to join us in a package show that will also include a set from genius Rikard Sjöblom (Big Big Train, Beardfish). We will all play our separate sets – but there will likely be guesting and as usual the grand finale is not to be missed! We’re really looking forward to a great evening of expanding, young, vibrant ‘prog’ music. New songs from The Flower Kings brand new double album ‘Waiting For Miracles’ and bundles of classic Flower Kings and beautiful and groovy music from our new guests.” The three acts will perform 12 dates across 6 countries, and you can find the full list of shows below, tickets on sale now:
1st December – Bahnhof Pauli, Hamburg, Germany 2nd December – Musik Zentrum, Hannover, Germany 3rd December – OK Andaluzia, Piekary Slaskie, Poland 4th December – Klub U Bazyla, Poznan, Poland 6th December – Burgerweeshuis, Deventer, Netherlands 7th December – De Boerderij, Zoetermeer, Netherlands 8th December – Scala, London, UK 9th December – Piano, Dortmund, Germany 10th December – Columbia Theater, Berlin, Germany 11th December – Amager Bio, Copenhagen, Denmark 12th December – Brewhouse, Gothenburg, Sweden 14th December – Kraken, Stockholm, Sweden
As mentioned previously, ‘Waiting For Miracles’ is due out on the 8th of November 2019.
Following the success of IAMTHEMORNING’s two studio albums for Kscope – Belighted, the award winning Lighthouse and their most recent live studio film Ocean Sounds, the Russian duo, comprising of virtuoso classical pianist Gleb Kolyadin and charismatic vocalist Marjana Semkina are releasing their new album entitled The Bell on 2nd August.
Their dedication to writing forward-thinking and thought-provoking music sees the duo create a new album of impressive depth and playability. A modern blend of rock, classical and folk, The Bell makes use of 19th Century song cycles – a style established by Schubert – that cohesively tells 10 individual stories.
Vocalist Marjana Semkina explains in more detail “The Bell is divided into two parts but each song is a story in its own right, all of them are fuelled by human cruelty and pain caused by it. Cruelty is the central theme of the album – together with all the different ways we respond to it and cope with it. This album is multi-layered and is, in many ways, a journey inwards, taking us inside of a mind of a person suffering from abuse or neglect or open hostility of the society or a specific person.
“Aesthetically, the album is based on themes taken from Victorian England’s art and culture, but more in a way of turning our attention to the fact that at its core, humankind isn’t making much progress in terms of emotional maturity.”
The Bell was recorded in March 2019 across Russia, the UK and Canada in several studios: Mosfilm in Moscow; Lendoc and Red Wave in St Petersburg; Noatune in London; The Studio at Sunbeams, Penrith; and Union Sound Company in Toronto. With engineering and mastering handled by Vlad Avy.
The beautiful album artwork for The Bell was created by the band’s favoured collaborator Constantine Nagishkin. Marjana explains the imagery “on the cover is a safety coffin bell – it’s a 19th century idea born from people’s obsessive fear of being buried alive, having been provoked by a lot of press attention to supposed cases of premature burials across the country. and the fact that Edgar Allan Poe frightened many readers by vividly describing the premature burial phenomenon in his short stories.
“One of the inventions to escape such a terrifying ordeal was a so called “safety coffin” that existed in many different configurations, including the one that had a bell attached to the gravestone with a thread that was attached to it and went all the way underground into the coffin so that the when the poor soul awoke and on realizing he’s been buried alive, could ring to let the people outside know what has happened.
“Although the idea is a bit morbid I feel there is hope in the artwork too – no matter how low you are or desperate you think your situation is, you can still call for help, but more than that you have to call for help if you need it”
1. Freak Show [07:09] 2. Sleeping Beauty [03:42] 3. Blue Sea [03:08] 4. Black And Blue [03:58] 5. Six Feet [03:56] 6. Ghost Of A Story [03:58] 7. Song Of Psyche [03:20] 8. Lilies[04:28] 9. Salute [07:27] 10. The Bell [05:04]
The debut solo album from the virtuoso Iamthemorning pianist featuring an impressive list of guest performers.
Following the success of two highly-praised albums with Iamthemorning, Russian virtuoso pianist Gleb Kolyadin affirms his musical authority with his debut, self-titled album on Kscope. The record features a staggering whos-who of performers, including: Gavin Harrison (King Crimson / Porcupine Tree) on drums; Nick Beggs (Steven Wilson) on bass; Theo Travis (Robert Fripp / Porcupine Tree / Steven Wilson) on flute and saxophone; the unmistakable voice and lyrics of Steve Hogarth (Marillion) alongside Mick Moss (Antimatter); and Jordan Rudess (Dream Theater) on additional keys.”the single greatest pianist I’ve ever met in my life.” Daniel Cavanagh (Anathema).
Gleb Kolyadin is an emotive exploration of self-identity; a story of two parts with interweaving leitmotifs. The album’s central concept weaves through an elaborate tonal and thematic structure, built around the extraordinary rhythm section of Gavin Harrison and Nick Beggs, which is accented at its focal points by guest appearances from Steve Hogarth, Jordan Rudess, Mick Moss and Theo Travis.
The album is a collaborative piece with each musician recording their own parts separately, starting with Gleb recording himself on a grand piano in Moscow Winter-Spring 2017 at the famed Mosfilm studio. The album was mixed and engineered by Vlad Avy, who also previously worked on the two Iamthemorning records. Gleb Kolyadin will be released on CD / LP and digitally.
“Gleb Kolyadin is a beautiful pianist and a great musician. I was invited to collaborate on his new solo album and my mind was made up as soon as I heard the music.” Steve Hogarth (Marillion)
“Gleb is an extremely rare talent as a pianist and as a composer. His compositions are very inspiring as he breaks new ground on the instrument.” Gavin Harrison (King Crimson / Porcupine Tree)
“Gleb Kolyadin is a rare talent. A virtuoso classical pianist with tremendous compositional skills… believe you will find the listening experience quite breathtaking.”Nick Beggs (Steven Wilson)
Tracklisting Insight Astral Architecture (featuring Mick Moss) White Dawn Kaleidoscope Eidolon Into The Void The Room Confluence (featuring Steve Hogarth) Constellation / The Bell Echo / Sigh / Strand Penrose Stairs Storyteller (featuring Jordan Rudess) The Best Of Days (featuring Steve Hogarth)
Jon Anderson received the ultimate prize at last night’s Prog Magazine Awards, accepting the Prog God Award from ARW bandmates Rick Wakeman and Trevor Rabin – the trio’s first public appearance since reforming in January.
Other winners included Big Big Train, who picked up Band Of The Year and Event Of The Year — for their critically acclaimed three-night residency at Kings Place in London. The Album Of The Year award went to iamthemorning’s Lighthouse, while the winner of the Chris Squire Virtuoso award went to King Crimson’s Jakko Jakszyk, and Van der Graaf Generator picked up the Lifetime Achievement Award. The full list of winners can be found below.
Guests at the event, hosted by presenter Matthew Wright and held at The Underglobe on London’s South Bank, included Rick Wakeman, comedian Ade Edmondson, Hawkwind’s Dave Brock, Gong’s Mike Howlett and Kavus Torabi, plus snooker star, DJ and radio host Steve Davis. The awards ceremony was preceded by a set by psychedelic rock band Purson.
“It’s worth considering the impact that Progressive Music continues to have,” said Prog Magazine Editor Jerry Ewing from the stage, before going on to pay tribute to Keith Emerson. A minute’s silence followed, dedicated to musicians who died this year.
Limelight sponsored by K Scope – The Anchoress
Anthem sponsored by Teamrock.com – Riverside: Towards the Blue Horizon
Live Event sponsored by The Stage – Big Big Train
Vanguard sponsored by The Ticket Factory – The Mute Gods
Storm Thorgerson Grand Design Award sponsored by Chord Electronics – Anthony Phillips Esoteric Reissue Series
Album of the Year sponsored by Cherry Red and Esoteric Records – iamthemorning: Lighthouse
Band of the Year sponsored by Olympus – Big Big Train
The Outer Limits sponsored by Inside Out Music – Buggles
Chris Squire Virtuoso sponsored by Butlins (Giants of Rock) – Jakko Jakszyk (King Crimson)
Guiding Light sponsored by currencies.co.uk – Andy Summers
Visionary sponsored by Eagle Vision – Jon Hiseman (Colosseum)
Lifetime Achievement sponsored by Prog Rocks – Van der Graaf Generator
Prog God – Jon Anderson
All Info originally published by team rock http://teamrock.com/news/2016-09-02/jon-anderson-accepts-prog-god-award
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