I have been involved in developing a few mission statements over the years, and it is not something I really enjoy doing as there is always the risk of overstating/understating the intent, and then the business not living up to it anyway. Not every business does this of course, and even fewer bands, but you can read United Progressive Fraternity’s on their website, “To produce great music, as a collective concept, whilst conveying a message of peace, hope and global awareness”. There is a lot more than that of course, but this is the core. Hence we now have the second part of ‘Secondary Overload’, following on from 2019’s ‘Loss’. The core of the band are the duo of Mark Trueack (vocals) and Steve Unruh (vocals, guitars, sitar guitar, bass, bass pedals, thumb piano, violin, flute, wind chimes, tambourine, percussion, narration, harmony vocals), but then there are a whole host of guests involved including the likes of Charlie Cawood, JPL, Ryo Okomuto and Steve Hackett but if you are that interested you will need to look them up yourselves as there are about 40! Also, if the nealy two hours of music is not enough then if you purchase it from Bandcamp you get an additional album, ‘The Secret Life of Light’, featuring an additional nine songs (68 minutes) by UPF’s “Romantechs” (Christophe Labled, Mark Trueack, Steve Unruh) which takes us up to a running time of three hours!
This is progressive rock, with loads of different elements and influences as one would expect from the involvement of so many musicians. It can be somewhat overpowering at times, with so many threads and layers that they can blend into each other, yet what makes this work is at the heart of this are some really strong melodies and songs and one can never deny the power of the lyrics and words. This is all about communication and something which brings this really home are the tracks which are just speeches from the likes of Sir David Attenborough and Chief Oren Lyons – that they have been brought in without any trickery really makes them stand out and brings the message strongly home that we are damaging our planet, but we can still reverse what we have done so far, hence “Hope”. This is not an album which can be drifted into, there needs to be a deliberate decision to sit and really listen to it, played on headphones when one has the time to concentrate and not be disturbed. Given the amount of work which has gone into this, the amount of people involved, and the small matter of a global pandemic it is no surprise this album too much longer to appear than was expected, and while there are elements quite reminiscent at times of The Flower Kings this is very much an album which stands on its own. There is a lot to take in here, both lyrically and musical volume, but it is definitely worth the effort.
RoSfest Gold tickets go on sale October 19th at 12:00 noon EST.
Gold Seat tickets gives you admittance to three days of the festival for Friday, Saturday and Sunday and will be available for sale at the total ticket price of $355.00 each.
For credit card purchases, add an additional TBA.
Gold Tickets provide you with select premium seating, a special limited-edition Gold ticket wrist band and a 11″ x 17′ RoSfest autograph poster.
How to order tickets. Step 1. TBA
For patrons that donated advance funds to Guardians of the Galaxy, non-for-profit status funding, call George Roldan directly to select your seats. (484-432-7357)
Payment must be received within 10 days or your seat selection will be released. Once payment is received, your tickets will be mailed out to you. That’s it!
Refund Policy: All sales are final. We are unable to offer refunds, exchanges, or receive ticket donations.
About RoSfest The Rites of Spring Festival, better known as RoSfest, is the Premier International Art Rock Festival in North America and has successfully featured 159 Progressive Rock Bands over the past 15 years from around the world. Now in our 16th year, RoSfest is an annual 3-day event showcasing 11 prominent live bands featuring ALL original music from around the globe. Our new home at the Sarasota Opera House (an audio-files dream) located in Sarasota, Florida raises the bar even higher as RoSfest delivers an incredible line-up to perform in a spectacular venue located in one of the best vacation destinations in the USA
2020 Lineup: Cast – Big Big Train – Thank You Scientist – United Prog Fraternity – Pattern Seeking Animals – Arc Iris – Dilemma – Lobate Scarp – Moon Letters – The Tea Club
We are so excited about this new album which is somewhat darker than “On Track” and features a three part epic suite called “Big Eastern”.
3. The Crawler
4. Moon-Catcher (Heaven Song Pt.2)
5. The Crossing
6. Big Eastern (Part One – Cruel Skies)
7. Big Eastern (Part Two – The Shaking Earth)
8. Big Eastern (Part Three – A Life in Chinatown)
Guy Manning, Sean Timms, Marek Arnold, Dan Mash
with our guests Luke Machin, Brody Green, Antonio Vittozzi, Tzan Niko, Raf Azaria, DavidB, Julie King, Kev Currie & the Gospo Collective and Jones Commentary choir.
Music & Lyrics Guy Manning
Mix & Production: Sean Timms
The album is described as “Dark and Dense, Intense and Immense…. ”
The Damanek Web site will be updated as the album is released with pages for each song, the lyrics, the players plus some insights into what the piece is about and background information.
GEP Presents “Damanek and Southern Empire ‘In Flight’ tour of the U.K. and Europe November/December 2018”
In November 2018, internationally renowned progressive rock bands Damanek and Southern Empire will join forces and embark upon their debut tour of the United Kingdom and Europe.
Damanek, featuring members from three different nations, is the brainchild of visionary multi-instrumentalist / singer-songwriter Guy Manning. The group released their debut album ‘On Track’ in early 2017 to critical acclaim appearing in many ‘Best album of 2017’ polls and will release their follow-up album ‘In Flight’ on the 5th October this year through GEP Records.
Guy Manning, commenting on the upcoming album and tour stated, “Since we played that memorable set at Summers End X Festival in 2016, I have been constantly asked ‘When are you going to play live again?’ and I have always had to say “…as soon as we can”…but now I can say “SOON!” The new album “In Flight” will be ready for the tour and it has some fantastic new pieces on it, which we are keen to perform live along with some of the favorites from ‘On Track’. Should be one hell of a show!”
Southern Empire, hailing from Adelaide, South Australia have just released their second album “Civilisation” through GEP.
We are happy to report that it is getting some fantastic reviews in its first few weeks!
Led by composer / producer / keyboardist Sean Timms, Southern Empire was formed from the ashes of symphonic prog. band Unitopia in 2014 and have quickly established themselves as one of the premiere live and studio acts of the current prog. era.
“It’s always extremely exciting to release a new album and then take those songs on the road. I think we have a very strong set of new songs to compliment the older material and we’re really looking forward to bringing our unique blend of ‘prog ’n’ roll’ (as Danny Lopresto, our lead vocalist calls it) to our friends and fans in the U.K. and Europe.” – Sean Timms.
For the European leg of the tour, Damanek and Southern Empire will be joined by special guests / friends Seven Steps to the Green Door.
“It’s great to be back on stage with Damanek 2 years after our first set at Summers End festival and promoting a brand new album. For the European dates of the tour, my mates in “Seven Steps to the Green Door” will join in for a triple bill of great songs from all the current albums and from our forthcoming new album THE?LIE, which will be released right in time for the tour! – Marek Arnold.
17/11/18 – HRH PROG Festival, Pwllheli, North Wales.
Damanek, Southern Empire and our Special guests, Seven Steps to the Green Door
Wed 21/11/18 – Bergkeller, Reichenbach, Germany.
Thu 22/11/18 – Spirit of 66, Verviers, Belgium.
Sat 24/11/18 – De Boerderij, Zoetermeer, The Netherlands.
Damanek and Southern Empire
Tue 27/11/18 – The Vic, Swindon, U.K.
Wed 28/11/18 – The Joiners, Southampton, U.K.
Thu 29/11/18 – The Robin 2, Bilston, U.K.
Fri 30/11/18 – Boston Music Room, Tufnell Park, London, U.K.
Sat 01/12/18 – Classic Rock Society (CRS), Maltby, U.K.
Please note: As joint headliners on the tour, Southern Empire and Damanek will be alternating and mixing up the final slot of each night to allow both bands a chance to play slightly extended sets…however we are not telling who / when!
Mark Truey Trueack & Sean Timms (Unitopia) have linked up to form a one-off live band called U.N.I.T. dB. They are joined by Southern Empire’s Danny Lopresto (guitars, vocals) and Brody Thomas Green (drums,vocals), and Steve Unruh (flute, violin) from Resistor/The Samurai of Prog.
We hope this message finds you well. Recently, there has been some speculation regarding the status of the friendship between Mark & myself. As you may be aware, during the making of our (unfinished) album ‘Turn Left’, Mark & I had a disagreement over some issues that were dear to both our hearts. We disbanded Unitopia and we started our own projects, Mark with United Progressive Fraternity and myself with Southern Empire. Both projects have been met with great success and we are respectively very proud of them.
About 6 months ago, Mark & I had the opportunity to talk about a few things unrelated to Unitopia and we found that our respect and care for one another was still there, despite the damages of the past. Mark was extremely supportive throughout a difficult business situation that we were both involved in and this gave us hope that a rekindling of our friendship was possible.
Where does this leave Unitopia you might ask?
As of this writing, there are no plans to re-form Unitopia, but there are some exciting projects that both Mark & I are working on together. These will be announced in due course and we hope you’ll get behind them as you’ve done for every other project that we’ve been involved in.
UPF and Southern Empire are still our primary focus and there will be some very exciting announcements concerning all three bands very soon.
Thank you for your continued support of our music. It means a great deal to us and we are constantly humbled and honoured to have such a wonderful and caring fan base.
Cheers… Sean Timms & Mark Truey Trueack
Artwork by Ed Unitsky
MUSIC VIDEO DEBUT FOR ‘TRAVELLING MAN (THE STORY OF ESHU)’ BY UNITED PROGRESSIVE FRATERNITY (21 Dec 2016). Special guest appearance by Steve Hackett (Genesis).
Stunning live action, CGI, digital artwork and stop-motion animation combine with live band footage to tell an epic story of trust, perspective, relationships, change, making choices, purpose in life, and love. ESHU is the Travelling Man, ‘Keeper of the Crossroads’, a mythical god in African culture who guides and teaches by teasing and tricking. Discover the wisdom in this masterpiece of songwriting. Travelling Man (The Story of ESHU) by United Progressive Fraternity (UPF).
Featuring the Blender Open Source movies produced by Ton Roosendaal – Elephants Dream, Sintel, and Tears of Steel; International Short Film Festival participant ‘The Flower in the Bottle’; Maxim Mildenberg; anime from Konstantin Dmitriev, creator of the Open Source Morevna film project, amazing stop motion from Gabriel Nóbrega & PG Santiago, and dystopian realities from Adrian Bonaventura.
Synopsis: Take a surrealistic sci-fi and fantasy journey through past, present, and future with ESHU – the Keeper of the Crossroads and discover what awaits you on the right path. Directed by Mark Truey Trueack. Produced by Ted Ollikkala, Singapore. Travelling Man (The Story of ESHU) is taken from the UPF album ‘Fall In Love With The World’, released by InsideOut Music, 2014.
Travelling Man (The Story of ESHU) – [Trueack/Williams/Timms]
Mark Truey Trueak – Vocals
Guy Manning – Keyboards
Guitars – Matt WIlliams
Acoustic Guitar – Steve Hackett
Drums – David Hopgood
Percussion – Tim Irrgang
Bass – Daniel Mash
Sax – Marek Arnold
Flute & VIolin – Steve Unruh
LIVE – Heerlen, The Netherlands (3 Oct 2014)
Vocals: – Mark Truey Trueack
Keyboards – Guy Manning
Sax & Keys – Marek Arnold
Guitars – Matt Williams
Bass – Daniel Mash
Drums – David Hopgood
Percussion – Tim Irrgang
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