2020 came to a close with LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT announcing their return and new album to be released on InsideOutMusic. Today, the legendary supergroup comprised of Mike Portnoy (Transatlantic, Sons of Apollo), John Petrucci (Dream Theater), Jordan Rudess (Dream Theater), and Tony Levin (King Crimson, Peter Gabriel) are pleased to officially announce that the new album ‘LTE3’ will be released on March 26th, 2021 via InsideOutMusic, twenty-two years after the bands’ last studio album.
“After over 20 years since the last time we recorded together, the four of us stepped into the studio and it was as if no time had passed at all! All of the magic that made the first two LTE albums so special was still there and we had such a great time making this record. I’m extremely proud of what we created together and can’t wait for everyone to hear it!” -John Petrucci
“The best thing to come out of 2020 was this long-awaited reunion! And it was surely worth the wait as after all these years, the magic chemistry was still there and stronger than ever!” -Mike Portnoy
1. Hypersonic (8:22) 2. Beating The Odds (6:09) 3. Liquid Evolution (3:23) 4. The Passage Of Time (7:32) 5. Chris & Kevin’s Amazing Odyssey (5:04) 6. Rhapsody In Blue (13:16) 7. Shades Of Hope (4:42) 8. Key To The Imagination (13:14)
Bonus Disc: Includes almost an hour of improvised jams.
The pre-order will start on January 22nd, 2021 and the album will be available as: •Limited deluxe hot pink 3LP+2CD+Blu-ray Box Set (incl. a poster and 4 art cards, Blu-ray includes a 5.1 surround mix with visuals and full band interview from the studio) •Limited 2CD+Blu-ray Artbook •Limited 2CD Digipak •Gatefold black 2LP+CD • Digital album (2CD)
Watch the recently released teaser trailer, created by Christian Rios, here:
In 1997, Mike Portnoy, John Petrucci, Jordan Rudess, and Tony Levin, joined forces to create Liquid Tension Experiment. The foursome would release their iconic, self-titled debut album in 1998 and the dazzling follow-up, LTE2 in 1999, creating a dynamic, frantic, and inventive sound all their own. The incredible creativity between the collective would prompt Petrucci and Portnoy to invite Rudess to join Dream Theater, effectively marking the end of this side project. However, since that time, there have been few reunions more in demand. Now, with the world in lockdown and calendars unexpectedly aligned, the inconceivable has finally happened… a new Liquid Tension Experiment album.
Lyrically, and musically, the award-winning Dutch artist lays her soul bare with the most evocative record of her career – captivating song-stories told with acoustic guitars, strings, horns, percussion, and Anneke’s hypnotic vocal harmonies
The new album’s title, ‘The Darkest Skies Are The Brightest’, refers to the idea that, when facing personal challenges, we are forced to find answers to life’s biggest questions. But, at this point in her near-three-decade-long music career, this solo album – and, crucially, the heartbreak that inspired it – was not something Anneke van Giersbergen ever anticipated writing.
In 2018, Anneke began working on new material for her metal band, VUUR. Although their debut album, ‘In This Moment We Are Free – Cities’, was met with a mixed reception, fans were warming up to their heavy, progressive sound. Therefore, a rapid follow-up album would surely establish Anneke’s return to fronting a metal band. However, behind the scenes, these were troubled times.
Anneke shares, ”My belief in VUUR saw me spend all my savings on recording VUUR’s debut album and taking the band on the road. After completing our first touring cycle, I realized that more VUUR would mean yet more, huge financial risks.”
To make matters worse, in 2018, her long-lasting marriage, which had always been wonderful, unexpectedly saw a storm approaching. Anneke adds, “I instantly knew I needed to write music about fixing my life. This creative endeavour would be far too personal for a VUUR album. And it would also require solitude.”
With just her acoustic guitar and basic recording gear, Anneke retreated to a small house near the woods, just outside her hometown of Eindhoven. She let go of the pressures of what VUUR’s future might be, and fell into the meditative process of writing a solo album. In 2019, work continued on the new songs. In 2020, Anneke asked her friend and producer, Gijs Coolen, to help finish the album.
Throughout the completion of the album, Anneke’s fragile, acoustic song-stories were fused together with an alchemy of panoramic strings, horns, and percussion. The resulting 11-track record has all the intimacy of Anneke serenading an audience of one, combined with surprising departures into swampier, foot-stomping grooves.
The Japanese art of kintsugi has inspired Anneke to use a repaired heart as the album’s symbol. Kintsugi teaches that bringing together the pieces of a broken object – with the use of a precious metal – adds value and uniqueness to it. And, instead of giving up on their marriage, Anneke and her husband decided to take the time to mend their bond. They now cherish the repaired heartbreak as something profoundly valuable.
Their journey through this personal storm, and the album that Anneke created in the eye of it, proves that the darkest skies truly are the brightest.
The album will be available as CD Digipak, Gatefold LP + CD & as digital album. 01. Agape 02. Hurricane 03. My Promise 04. I Saw A Car 05. The Soul Knows 06. The End 07. Keep It Simple 08. Lo And Behold 09. Losing You 10. Survive 11. Love You Like I Love You
‘The Darkest Skies Are The Brightest’ is Anneke’s 23rd career album. It proves, once again, that the award-winning Dutch artist defies being pigeonholed by any genre.
After thirteen years as the front woman for melancholic metallers, The Gathering, she struck out on her own in 2007. Since then, her creativity has known no bounds. Anneke quickly solidified a successful solo career (initially under the moniker Agua de Annique), and has recorded and performed with Canadian metal genius Devin Townsend multiple times. She has also lent her serene yet powerful voice to the likes of: Anathema, Icelandic folk group Árstíðir, Within Temptation, Ayreon mastermind Arjen Lucassen, Amorphis, and prog legend John Wetton.
2012’s ‘Everything is Changing’ was something of a milestone in Anneke’s solo career. The album, which was the first to be released under her own name, received two Edison Award nominations – Holland’s most prestigious music prize – in the categories ‘Best Female Artist’ and ‘Best Album’.
In 2015, Anneke van Giersbergen and Arjen Lucassen (Ayreon) released their collaborative album ‘The Diary’ under the name The Gentle Storm. In October 2017, Anneke’s progressive metal outfit VUUR released their much-anticipated debut album. ‘In This Moment We Are Free – Cities’ entered the Dutch Album Top 100 at number 2, Anneke’s highest-ever chart position.
Forever the unpredictable artist, in late 2018, Anneke released ‘Symphonized’, an 11-track live orchestral album. It was recorded at two career-spanning concerts alongside Residentie Orkest The Hague, and features rearrangements of songs from her entire back catalogue.
2019 saw Dutch music copyright organization Buma Cultuur honor Anneke with the Buma ROCKS! Export Award. This is their award for the Most Successful Dutch Artist Abroad in Heavy Music. In 2021, the release of her new solo album ‘The Darkest Skies Is The Brightest’ will see Anneke surprise her fans all over again.
On October 30th, 2020 progressive rockers THE FLOWER KINGS will release their new double album “Islands” on InsideOutMusic, just a year after the group’s much celebrated “Waiting For Miracles”.
Due to the Covid-19-pandemic, the album comes out quite a bit sooner than originally planned as the band’s creative mastermind Roine Stolt explains: “All shows and festivals were cancelled and the future didn’t really ‘unfold’ itself like we had hoped. To sit out the pandemic with no activities was not an option for us! We can’t be stopped by an evil virus! So, with members living in the USA, Italy, Austria and Sweden, the only way to realize this album, was to use the magic of the ‘net’, sending files around the globe and start building what now has become a mammoth-sized double album of 21 songs.”
The 92 minutes long “Islands” features artwork by legend Roger Dean (Yes, Asia, Gentle Giant, Greenslade, Uriah Heep) and all trademark sounds and melodies, the band is renowned for. From vintage keys to epic guitar solos, from odd drum patterns to symphonic elements, THE FLOWER KINGS present a dynamic and complex record that is bold, bombastic and beautiful.
Stolt reveals the following about the concept of the record: “The theme of the album is isolation – so the title ‘Islands’ felt like a most relevant title – as much of it circulates around isolation, loss, and the fear of being disconnected. Having to face this unexpected pandemic will leave marks on each one of us for a very long time and to lose loved ones forces us to soldier on, learning and growing a stronger version of ourselves in this fragile cycle of life.
Musically; the aim has been to create a bigger grand epic piece out of 21 songs – so they are all connected with themes that weave in and out – like the way ‘Sgt Peppers’ or ‘The Lamb’ were built on shorter songs, but yet linked. So view it as one mega song or as 21 separate pieces, it is all tailored to be listened to as one piece – like a cinematic 90min long ride.”
Disc One (49:40) 1 – Racing With Blinders On 4:24 2 – From The Ground 4.02 3 – Black Swan 5:53 4 – Morning News 4:01 5 – Broken 6:38 6 – Goodbye Outrage 2:19 7 – Journeyman 1:43 8 – Tangerine 3:51 9 – Solaris 9:10 10 – Heart Of The Valley 4:18 11- Man In A Two Peace Suit 3:21
Disc Two (43:01) 1 – All I Need Is Love 5:48 2 – A New Species 5:45 3 – Northern Lights 5:43 4 – Hidden Angles 0:50 5 – Serpentine 3:52 6 – Looking For Answers 4:30 7 –Telescope 4:41 8 – Fool’s Gold 3:11 9 – Between Hope & Fear 4:29 10 – Islands 4:12
“Islands” will be available as massive Limited 3LP & 2CD box set with slipcase and 180 gram vinyl housed in two gatefolds, one single sleeve; as Limited Edition 2CD Digipak and Digital Album. Presales will start September 11th, 2020.
On May 15th, 2020, PATTERN-SEEKING ANIMALS, the California-based band featuring Ted Leonard (lead vocals & guitars), Jimmy Keegan (drums & vocals), Dave Meros (bass) and John Boegehold (keyboards) released its second studio album “Prehensile Tales” on InsideOutMusic.
Now, the band offers you another track from this record, ‘Why Don’t We Run’, which is probably the catchiest song on the album, the video was made by V. Cordero.
John Boegehold comments: “Spaghetti Western? Spaghetti Eastern? Flamenco Fusion? We’ve heard some interesting descriptions of this song. Whatever you call it, it’s definitely fun to play.”
For the six songs on the album (the longest clocking in at over 17 minutes), the band introduced violin, flute, trumpet, cello, sax and pedal steel to the sound palette that was once again recorded & mixed by Rich Mouser at The Mouse House.
The track-listing reads as follows: 1. Raining Hard In Heaven 2. Here In My Autumn 3. Elegant Vampires 4. Why Don’t We Run 5. Lifeboat 6. Soon But Not Today
The album, featuring cover art by Polish artist Mirek (https://www.facebook.com/mirekis7/), will be released as Gatefold 2LP plus CD, Limited Edition CD, and on all digital platforms. Presales are now available!
“Messrs Boegehold, Meros, Keegan and Leonard have delivered a sophomore album to be extremely proud of. …a clear and definitive A+” – The Prog Report
Lonely Robot, the project masterminded by producer, guitarist and singer/songwriter John Mitchell (Kino, Frost*, Arena, It Bites), are set to release their fourth album ‘Feelings Are Good’ on July 17th, 2020. Now, the first track from this record has been released featuring visuals by Miles Skarin of Crystal
‘Feelings Are Good’ marks sort of a fresh start following the conclusion of the ‘The Astronaut Trilogy’. John comments: “‘Feelings Are Good’ is a bit of a departure from the first three Lonely Robot albums. 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 now available for pre-order and will be released 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?”
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
During the campaign for their acclaimed previous album ‘Under Stars’, a full animated film was created by Crystal Spotlight and screened at two very special cinema events in the UK. Now the full visual accompaniment is available to stream, and you can watch it now here: https://youtu.be/slyM9ZUzr6U
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.
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