Araqsana – Araqsana

Once in a while, I get a personal email containing music that’s just above and beyond good. This time, that email came from Jackson Albert Mann, and the music is under the moniker Araqsana. Jackson is a post-graduate student at the Berklee College of Music, and his debut EP displays some very tasty jazz fusion. Jackson states he is influenced by hardcore punk, experimental electronic music, and jam bands. The latter I can feel in Araqsana, but the former two are much more subtle and it takes more than one listen to get a glimpse of them through … Read more

Exclusive Video Premiere: Ikarus – Ryuujin


We are pleased to present a live video of Ikarus performing ‘Ryuujin’ off their most recent album, Chronosome.

Ikarus is a Swiss contemporary jazz band with an interesting configuration. They take a typical acoustic jazz trio composed of piano, bass, and drums, and add two scat vocalists – one male and one female – to the mix. This results in a highly unique sound defined by sublime vocal interplay underlaid by dynamic compositions.

The human voice, unbound by language, is more versatile than any other instrument one might use. Ikarus certainly proves that with their stellar performance. The rhythm … Read more

Asylon Terra – Blind Man Running

French quartet Asylon Terra recently released Blind Man Running, their first, full-length release. Between contemporary jazz, ambient music, and progressive rock, the compositions of Pierre Lordet, clarinetist of the group, take shape on this entrancing album. Anne Quillier, about whose sextet we already wrote, takes seat behind the omnipresent keyboards – the Rhodes and Moog -, while Lucas Hercberg takes bass duties, and Clément Black takes care of the drums. The whole is an astounding result. Blind Man Running will take your breath away. The vast soundscapes played here will submerge you, and even the harder-hitting compositions – … Read more

Sub:Shaman – Apnea

Coming all the way from Singapore, progressive indie rock band Sub:Shaman just released their most recent album, Apnea. Consisting of nine explorative tracks, this forty-five minute magnum opus intertwines a wide variety of genres into the band’s own style and vision. Progressive rock, math rock, indie, and jazz all partake in the melting pot that is Apnea. The alternative quintet will use scat singing, pulsating electronic notes, dissonant chords, odd metres, and seventh chords to their advantage, and it creates something greater than the sum of its parts. I didn’t remember why I followed this page on bandcamp, but … Read more

Yazz Ahmed – La saboteuse

British Bahraini trumpet and flugelhorn player Yazz Ahmed just released her new jazz album, La saboteuse. Mixing occidental jazz with middle-eastern music, Yazz crafted a unique and fascinating record that crosses generations and cultures. It’s really a good album to listen to if you want to travel at home, just let yourself be flown across the globe by it. La saboteuse is just full of wonderful moments, of melodies that speak old tongues and rhythms that tell old tales. I can’t recommend it enough.

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Mammoth – Deviations

mammothIn the world of progressive rock and metal, instrumental albums are pretty common so it’s a bit hard to stand out. Mammoth absolutely manage to do this with their new album Deviations. Impressive playing paired with amazing production quality and beautiful tones prove that these guys are at the top of their class.

The first song, ‘Entanglements’ sounds like an entanglement of instruments weaving wonderfully through each other. Impressive guitar arpeggios and solos are complemented by ambient keyboards and intense drums. The middle section of the song calms down with a bright clean section that builds back up into … Read more

Sithu Aye – Set Course for Andromeda

coverHaving not heard much of Sithu Aye’s catalog aside from a couple listens of their Senpai EP last year (which I definitely need to revisit now), I didn’t really know what to expect from their new album Set Course For Andromeda. After listening to it, I now realize I should have been paying more attention to this band, because it blew me away!

The album is split into two discs, the first one, is a collection of songs with no thematic tie to each other, and the second disc is a 29-minute suite about an alien Andromedan, which is … Read more

Warm up Your Throats! Audition to Be the Voice of II II II!

II II II is amongst my favourite bands because of their unique style of composition. Their experimental, jazzy mathcore album, A Conundrum on My Coffee Table, from 2012, still gets played fairly frequently, which is quite a feat for me! The recent news of new material from the band, with the release of an instrumental demo on Youtube (below), stirred me up and got me very excited. It seems I wasn’t the only one because in response to the public’s reaction, the band decided to move on and concretize the new EP.

Right now, on SoundCloud, they have put … Read more

Axon-Neuron – Metamorphosis

covermetamorphosisI was totally stunned, back in 2012, when Axon-Neuron released their previous album, Dreamstate. Their unique blend of jazz, classical and rock or metal music, the excellent vocal delivery, as well as the proficient use of a 9-string guitar, simply overwhelmed me, and I became an instant fan. Oh, and there was a string quartet in there, too. Three years and two thirds later and a bunch of personnel changes – Jeremey is the only member left from Dreamstate -, the band releases Metamorphosis, an almost two hour-long double album that takes all they’ve previously did and cranks … Read more

Fire! – She Sleeps, She Sleeps

When one first hears of the band Fire!, one may be tempted to first imagine a hardcore punk act, brutally tearing down establishments one performance at a time; an in-your-face barrage of aggression which unleashes your adrenaline and demands your attention. Is this not how one would generally imagine “Fire!” after all? A cry shouted out in the wake of uncontrollable destruction which will shortly reduce all around it to ash? It is a powerful force to say the least.

Yet there is another, more subtle side to fire which many tend to overlook. The flames can emerge, small … Read more