They appear alongside a line up of great artists including That Joe Payne, The Paradox Twin, Amanda Lehmann, Storm Deva & more
Saturday 24th August to Monday 26th August 2024, Cantley Park, Wokingham
Wokingham Festival has announced its three day line up featuring a wide range of musical genres including a showcase of some of the best current progressive music artists.
Taking place on Saturday, Sunday & Monday of the August Bank Holiday weekend with over 40 artists appearing, the festival has announced that the Monday line up on August 26th, which focuses on the best of prog & rock, will feature one of the most influential bands to emerge from the 1980’s festival scene, Ozric Tentacles as headliners. The band are the creative vision of multi-instrumentalist, Ed Wynne and their uniquely trippy soundscapes connect fans of progressive rock, psychedelia and dance culture. Ozric Tentacles released their 17th studio album, ‘Lotus Unfolding’ in October 2023 to great acclaim in in their 40th anniversary year.
Photo : Ozric Tentacles. Credit : Artist Also appearing on the main stage on the day will be That Joe Payne, performing a full band set with his
incredible group of musicians, plus The Paradox Twin, Spriggan Mist, Hoopy Frood & Amanda Lehmann.
There is also a second stage with no cross over so that every minute of music on the day can be enjoyed by all. The stage features a great mix of prog, blues & indie from some excellent artists. Headliners are the fast rising band from the Netherlands, Sonic Whip and there will also be performances from Chloe Mogg, San Demas,
Jimmy the Dog & Storm Deva. Gates open at 11.00am, Music starts at 12.00 midday and finishes at 8pm on the Monday (10.30 on Sat &
Sun) so not a late night if working the next day.
The first two days of the festival on the Saturday & Sunday feature a wide range of musical style including tribute artists, cover artists as well as original artists. Original prog and rock will also be represented on those days with Flutatious headlining the second stage on the Sunday, The Room playing the main stage on the Saturday and The Cold Blooded Hearts playing the main stage on the Sunday. There will also be performances from a number of excellent young indie bands.
About Wokingham Festival :-
Wokingham Festival was set up over 16 years ago by founder Stan Hetherington, who also runs the renowned Wokingham Music Club and it has built a solid and growing reputation over the years as a quality family friendly festival run by the community for the community. As well as the music across its two stages there is a great range of food and drink stalls in addition to the well stocked bar and beer tent.
The festival was traditionally a two day festival but in 2019 Stan asked Chris Hillman of White Star Records, if he would help set up a new day 3 of the festival to focus on the best of prog and rock. Chris was happy to oblige and the day was so successful that it has continued with 2024 being the 6th year since that first event!
Stan Hetherington has decided to step down from the festival as part of his retirement and has handed over the reins to a new team that will be run by Dean Nelson, known in the prog scene and beyond as manager of Kyros and owner of Generation Studio. Dean and his new team will be assisted with ongoing advice from Stan & Chris.
Chris Hillman spoke about this year’s event :
‘It’s been wonderful to see the reputation of Wokingham Festival growing further since we added a day of prog and rock to the event. The crowd has grown each year so hopefully that means we are doing something right.The aim has been to bring established bands to the area and also to help support up and coming artists in a fun friendly music loving environment. We are really excited that Ozric Tentacles are able to join us this year, alongside a great line up of quality artists’
Photo : Wokingham Festival Day 3 Crowd. Credit Andrew Merritt
Early Bird Tickets for Wokingham Festival which offer great value have already gone on sale, and may be purchased via the web site at www.wokinghamfestival.co.uk
For more information and to stay updated on Wokingham Festival, follow their social media at www.facebook.com/wokinghamfestival www.instagram.com/wokinghamfestival www.twitter.com/wokinghamfest
TRANSATLANTIC – the Prog Supergroup of Neal Morse, Mike Portnoy, Roine Stolt & Pete Trewavas – have announced the release of ‘Live at Morsefest 2022: The Absolute Whirlwind’ for April 26th, 2024. This mammoth Limited 5CD + 2 Blu-ray Artbook set features both sets from Morsefest in their entirety, with nearly 4 and a half hours of music in total.
To coincide with the announcement, the band have launched a live clip of the track ‘Can You Feel It’, taken from night 2, and you can watch that video here:
“Not to be confused by last years live release of our last show in Paris, THIS release of TA at Morsefest 2022 represents the most epic and mammoth of all TA Live releases!
2 Nights, 2 completely different sets, 2 TA concept albums done in their entirety…accompanied with Strings, Horns, Percussion, Female Vocals, etc…Transatlantic has always been about “More Never Is Enough”, but no live TA release has ever been more EPIC than this one…It’s the ULTIMATE Live TA experience!”
Neal Morse adds:
“At long last, a musical dream come true in true epic fashion! To play The Absolute Universe, The Whirlwind, and other great pieces of music with Transatlantic, along with an amazing string section, background singers, etc. What more could any musician ask for? This is the very best of the very best in my view. I hope you all enjoy experiencing this as much as we enjoyed performing it!“
Roine Stolt comments:
“Playing Morsefest was quite a task, learning all the different material for the 2 different shows.
We even got a chance to play that Procol Harum tune, that is dear to me & takes me back to my teenage years, just getting to know what prog is/was. The addition of the strings and choir at Morsefest, plus Philip adding percussion lent a different and perhaps more of an orchestral side. That worked really well and made these 2 nights very special.”
Pete Trewavas comments:
“To play Morsefest 2022 was an absolute pleasure for me and gave us a natural break at the end of the North American leg of The Absolute Universe tour, where we regrouped at Neal’s to rehearse for the two shows, back where we had rehearsed for the tour some four or five weeks earlier.
We had 3 days I think it was to refresh The Whirlwind full version and learn ‘In Held T’was In I’. The festival was an absolute blast. We were all super relaxed and enjoying ourselves probably due to the little break from touring back to rehearsing.
Neal had been wanting to get Transatlantic at MorseFest since we released Whirlwind and it never panned out for various reasons, so it felt fitting that we got it all together for The Absolute Universe tour.”
Morsefest, the festival put on by Neal Morse annually in Nashville, Tennessee has been in existence since 2014. Typically, the weekend-long event celebrated music from Neal’s solo work and other bands from his career. But with each passing Morsefest, there had been one question lingering among the faithful audience that returned every year…when will Neal Morse, Mike Portnoy, Roine Stolt & Pete Trewavas perform at Morsefest? In 2022, at the 9th Morsefest, it finally happened and in epic Transatlantic fashion.
In 2021, Transatlantic released The Absolute Universe, the band’s 5th album since forming in 2000. However, as the band’s motto is “More Is Never Enough,” ‘The Absolute Universe’ was released as two different versions – ‘The Breath of Life (Abridged version)’, and ‘Forevermore (Extended version)’. In addition, the band combined those two versions for an Ultimate Edition of the album. With touring restrictions due to the pandemic finally lifted, the band finally started their tour in April 2022 ending up at Morsefest on the weekend of April 29th and 30th.
The weekend at Morsefest provided 2 nights of shows. For night one, the band performed their classic album ‘The Whirlwind’ in its entirety, the first time they had done so in 10 years. The evening also added “Into the Blue” and “Shine” from the band’s 4th album ‘Kaleidoscope’ as well as the classic ballad “We All Need Some Light.” As a surprise, the band played a song they’ve never performed live before – their cover of the Procol Harum classic “In Held ‘Twas In I” from the first Transatlantic album ‘SMPTe.’
Night 2 saw the full performance of The Absolute Universe – The Ultimate Edition, combining all of the tracks from the 2 versions of the album. The night closed with a medley of tracks from the band’s first two albums including “All of the Above,” “My New World,” and “Stranger In Your Soul.”
For the first time, the band performed alongside a choir and string section, making these shows truly special for those who were in attendance. Now, you can experience these incredible performances for yourself with the release of this Limited Deluxe 5CD+2Blu-ray artbook, featuring an extensive 36-page booklet with photos, contained within a hardcover.
Night 1 Tracklisting: 1. Into The Blue 2. In Held (‘Twas) In I 3. Shine 4. We All Need Some Light 5. Overture/Whirlwind 6. The Wind Blew Them All Away 7. On The Prowl 8. A Man Can Feel 9. Out Of The Night 10. Rose Colored Glasses 11. Evermore 12. Set Us Free 13. Lay Down Your Life 14. Pieces of Heaven 15. Is It Really Happening? 16. Dancing With Eternal Glory/Whirlwind (Reprise)
Night 2 Tracklisting: 1. Overture 2. Reaching For The Sky 3. Higher Than The Morning 4. The Darkness In The Light 5. Take Now My Soul 6. Bully 7. Rainbow Sky 8. Looking For The Light 9. The World We Used To Know 10. The Sun Comes Up Today 11. Love Made A Way (Prelude) 12. Owl Howl 13. Solitude 14. Belong 15. Lonesome Rebel 16. Can You Feel It 17. Looking For The Light (Reprise) 18. The Greatest Story Never Ends 19. Love Made A Way 20. Bridge Across Forever 21. The Final Medley
Contrary to popular belief, progressive rock didn’t disappear with the advent of punk, and the lack of media support didn’t prevent new bands from forming and new music being created. It is hard to imagine these days, with everyone being permanently connected, but there was a time not long ago when communication was by word of mouth and letter. With no coverage by much of the media, it was down to fanzines and independent magazines to spread the word of what was happening within the progressive rock scene, what was being released, and who was worth going to see in concert. Most of these magazines survived for just a few issues, while others continued for many years, all having their part to play in spreading the word.
One of the most important during this period was ‘Feedback’. It initially started as the newsletter of Mensa’s Rock Music Special Interest Group in 1988, but when Kev Rowland became secretary in 1990, he determined to turn it into a magazine promoting music that often wasn’t being written about in the mainstream press. ‘Feedback’ soon became one of the key promoters of the underground progressive scene, and Rowland one of the most well-known and popular reviewers. He also became a contributor to ‘Rock ‘n’ Reel’, as well as writing for the Ghostland website in the early days of prog on the web.
Rowland collated all his progressive rock reviews and interviews written between 1991 and 2006 into three volumes which have been described by Record Collector and others as “The Bible” while one reviewer called it the “Encyclopaedia Progressivica”. It was originally intended to be just one book, but with the word count at more than half a million it was too big, so instead it was decided to break it into easily digestible chunks and include all album artwork. The books have been widely acclaimed, and questions were asked of Rowland as to when the next one in the series would be available? Originally there was never any intention to produce any others as these had captured the time when he was running ‘Feedback’. However, even though he moved to the other side of the world and dropped out of the music scene, Rowland did begin writing again in 2008 and was soon as involved as he had previously been in the UK. Also, all his reviews were now saved digitally and did not have to be brought back to life from poorly photocopied fanzines, and he became convinced that it would be worthwhile to continue the series as the music had never stopped.
This led to Volume 4, containing his writings from 2008 to 2013, with all album covers in full colour and cover art again by Martin Springett. Unlike the others in the series, this included the complete alphabet, along with some book and DVD reviews, various artists, and a few interviews. Of course, again questions were soon being asked as to when the next volume would be available and now, we have Volume 5, which starts in 2014 and takes us into 2018. The foreword is by label owner Nick Katona, while the comments on the rear cover are from musicians Steve Bonino and Peter Matuchniak.
Along with the other volumes in the series, this book shines a spotlight onto a scene which is still critically ignored by many and provides information about the music in a constructive manner. It is again possible to discover some great music from wonderful bands, and this should be used as a guide to expand collections and understand that prog rock really didn’t die, it just went underground.
About the author
Kev Rowland is a self-confessed music addict, who has never really been the same since he heard ‘Sabbath Bloody Sabbath’ in 1975. In the Eighties he spent quite a ridiculous amount of money on all things related to Jethro Tull and was asked by David Rees to write a piece on Carmen (the band including John Glascock, not the opera) for the Tull fanzine ‘A New Day’. This simple request was life-changing, although neither realised it at the time.
Kev discovered he enjoyed writing about music and submitted reviews for the inaugural Mensa Rock Special Interest Group newsletter, before becoming secretary himself in 1990. Over the next 16 years, the newsletter gained a name, and he put out more than 80 issues, many of them doubles, more than 11,000 pages. When he moved to New Zealand in 2006, he retired from the music scene, but was pulled back in – initially kicking and screaming until he accepted his fate. These days he can again be found contributing to many magazines and websites and over the last 30+ years has written literally millions of words on music, but is not stopping yet and somehow, he still manages more than 250,000 words annually. So much music, so little time!
When he isn’t listening to music, writing about music, or thinking about music, then he can be found on his lifestyle block with his wonderful wife Sara, and their 6 dogs, 5 cats, chickens, sheep, lambs, calves, and cattle. Oh, apparently, he has a day job as well.
Kev is available for interview but asks for initial contact to be made via email as time zones can be confusing to some people, and he does live at the end of the world after all: [email protected]
Kev Rowland’s previous collections of his progressive rock reviews and interviews written between 1991 and 2013 are essential for all lovers of the genre, but don’t just take our word for it.
A book that will be quickly referred to as “a bible”.
Daryl Easlea, Record Collector
His writing is informative, intelligent, and generous… As Brian Appleton would put it, thank you Kev for your contribution.
Rychard Carrington, Rock n Reel
It is unvarnished and unencumbered by any expectations of PR; the reviews are clearly done for no other reason than love of the genre.
DE, Prog Magazine
This is best treated as a kind of guide to the neo-progressive genre… progressive rock has never really died; it just went from the mainstream to the underground.
Artur Chachlowski, MLWZ
All I can say is if you are a true proghead this book should be in your library of progressive rock literature. Because it’s a great work. A book to be considered of superior or lasting artistic merit.
Henri Strik, Background Magazine
Chronic well-crafted, short, and mostly written in order to develop the subject with ease… I believe that many current columnists should emulate the writing of Mr. Rowland.
All four volumes are essentially icings on a huge, delicious prog cake and should be an integral part in every prog-lovers’ cabinet.
Jan Buddenberg, DPRP.net
I continue to find these books extremely enjoyable and consider Kev a role model. “Read on” Kev indicates in his introduction. I fully concur.
Transport Aerian is a Belgian progressive rock project. Taking it roots in 2009, it is known ever since for its vivid and dark combination of contemporary prog and jazz sounds, wrapped in heavier guitar work, and intimate, deeply personal poetry.
It sets no strict genre borders and knows no musical or spiritual limits but always stays on the progressive side. In recent years, the band has released four studio albums published by American grass-roots record label Melodic Revolution Records: Bleeding (2013), Darkblue (2015), Therianthrope (2017), and Skywound (2021). The project worked with many guest artists from all over the world, including such names as Paul Sax (Curved Air), Elvya (Solo artist, Ayreon), Chris Allan (Malefice/Spiral Key), Marco Ragni, Peter Matuchniak and many others. In recent years, the band performed numerous shows in Belgium, France, and The Netherlands with its current lineup featuring Hamlet (vocals and bass), Stefan Boeykens (guitars), Umut Eldem (Keyboards), and Paul De Smet (drums).
Transport Aerian is known for focusing solely on concept albums with a heavy emphasis on more serious topics, ranging from personal, and spiritual to social or perspectives – in other words openly talking about the experience of just being a human in a rapidly changing world on the brink of crisis.
Musically, Transport Aerian combines the elements of classic prog and contemporary heavy and experimental music, exploring the vintage production designs, poetic post-modernist tint in lyrics and generally designs its performances and recordings in a way to tell the story. In 2023 the band announced the coming release of a live album simply titled “Live In Ghent” and a mini-tour under the title Exit Skywound.
01. Abstract Symphony V: The Immortals 02. Full Body Access 3. Shall Not Be 04. Big Heart 05. Lunatic 06. Falling 20 07. Destroy Me 08. Inspire 09. Smirking Sirens 10. The Effect 11. Skywound
Band Members Hamlet // Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards, Bass Guitar, Programming, Drums, and Samples Stefan Boeykens // Guitars Paul De Smet // Drums Umut Eldem // Contemporary Classic Composer, Keyboards
For fans of Riverside, Pain Of Salvation, Porcupine Tree, A Perfect Circle , and so on….
Experience the outlandish inspiration behind Refestramus’ latest hit on their upcoming album, Intouríst. Derek Ferguson, the creative force of the Chicago-based ensemble, transforms the true life, bizarre account of a televangelist’s wife and her otherworldly seducer into a musical odyssey. “Agent M Vs. the Sex Lizard,’ the provocative second chapter of the album’s title trilogy, comes to life through a mesmerizing music video featuring the enigmatic Agent Mikrovolnovka. Dive into the intrigue before the full album drops on May 4th.
Refestramus, the progressive art rock ensemble hailing from Chicago, IL, renowned for blending influences from traditional gypsy, flamenco, and Slavic styles with a modern hard rock edge, Refestramus made waves with their debut album, “Decoupage,” in 2021. Now, in 2023, they’re teasing fans with a glimpse of the even more progressive direction they’re taking with “Intouríst.” Following the album drop, the band plans an extensive tour to support their latest musical venture.
“Refestramus is joined on this track by Colouratura members Derek Pavlic and Ian Beabout, as well as Jerry King from Moon X.”
Refestramus Derek Ferguson – Drums, Jerry King – Bass, Derek Pavlic – Guitars, Mellotron and Viola, Rogelio Souza – Keys Nida – Vocals
All arrangements by Refestramus Produced by Ian Beabout and Derek Ferguson Mixed and Mastered by Ian Beabout
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