In 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
Devin Townsend has gone many different musical places in his career, frequently doing something drastically different that what he’s done before, most notably on his first four albums in the Devin Townsend Project with Ki, Addicted, Deconstruction, and Ghost. Transcendence is no exception, as it takes his sound to a new level. On this album, Devin took input from the rest of the band, musicians he’s been working with for 10+ years, and relinquished some control to them. Because of this, the band sounds more united than on other recent DTP albums, like Epicloud and Sky Blue.
Karmakanic’s fifth studio album, Dot, is a progressive rock album inspired by recent writings by Carl Sagan. Frontman Jonas Reingold stated that this inspiration stemmed from Sagan’s quote about the picture of the earth that Voyager 1 took in 1990 from the outer areas of our solar system. “Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter … Read more
The Mercury Tree is one of the rare bands that has managed to constantly grow and improve with every record they put out. On their fifth record, Permutations, they are barely recognizable as the same band that created their radio-friendly alt-rock debut nearly a decade earlier. Permutations is an extremely dense and challenging listen that demands and rewards multiple listens; it is one of the rare records which combines technicality and innovation with a strong emotional core.
Bandleader Ben Spees has been the only constant throughout the band’s discography, and he manages to be the lead vocalist, guitarist and … Read more
The Flower Kings is a band that really helped carry the torch in the 90’s that bands like Yes lit during the 60’s and 70’s, taking that style of Progressive Rock to a new level and continuing to help it grow. So it’s quite a treat to hear a collaboration between the leader of The Flower Kings, Roine Stolt, and the former lead vocalist of Yes, Jon Anderson. If you’ve ever wondered what a new Flower Kings album with the vocalist from Yes would sound like, Invention of Knowledge is it, as Anderson/Stolt make a perfect combination! As much as … Read more
Russian progressive chamber duo iamthemorning has been a growing name over these years since the release of their debut album, entitled “~”, which blends chamber music with touches of progressive rock to create a beautiful atmosphere formed in majority by Gleb Kolyadin’s amazing piano work and Marjana Semkina’s astonishing vocals. Their sophomore record, “Belighted”, saw the band increasing its potential and audience. Lighthouse, their second KScope release, reaches new levels of sound and ambition to deliver a touching work of art. For this release, they’ve enlisted the help of Porcupine Tree’s musicians Colin Edwin (bass) and Gavin Harrison (drums), … Read more
Their first album in 8 years (during which time the band disbanded and reformed), Falling Satellites is the much anticipated third album from Jem Godrey’s Frost*. Their critically acclaimed debut album Milliontown remains one of my favorite prog albums, and while I wasn’t as into the follow-up in 2008 Experiments In Mass Appeal (the mix on the first two tracks was strange, with the quiet sections being barely audible and the loud sections blowing out your speakers) I was excited to hear what was next for the band.
The intro to the album, ‘First Day’, is a soft ambient … Read more
Released last year on June 22, 2015, Armonite’s second album, and first album in 15 years The Sun Is New Each Day is a vibrant instrumental prog album that is full of both complex and beautiful melodies. The prominent electric violin reminds me a bit of the Dixie Dregs. The album sounds like a Soundtrack at times, which makes sense since the band has published videos of a few movie theme covers from their show The Soundtrack is New Each Day. In fact, it sounds more like a video game soundtrack to me. ‘‘G’ as in Gears’ could easily … Read more
I wasn’t introduced to Haken until early 2014 when I discovered their 2013 release The Mountain. I loved that album and immediately listened to the rest of their discography. Later that year, they released their EP Restoration which was an awesome look into their past, re-imagining and re-recording songs from their demo with higher production quality. Now, nearly two years later, we’re graced with a new full-length album called Affinity.
If you followed Haken’s facebook page closely in January of this year, you might have seen them post a few times about the name and content of the … Read more
I’ve been into the progressive rock band Beardfish for a while, my favorite album of theirs being their two parter “Sleeping In Traffic.” I also enjoyed their latest album 4626+Comfortzone quite a bit. So I was excited to hear what the band’s frontman Rikard Sjöblom had in store for his second solo album “The Unbendable Sleep”.
Rikard’s unique and catchy melodies paired with his distinct vocals makes for some interesting music to say the least. This album flows well but also goes unexpected places. One of which being a short interlude track “Building A Tent For Astor” which is a … Read more