Sunday, October 25, 2020

Morse/Portnoy/George "Cov3r to Cov3r"

 Hello again from The Concert Closet fellow progheads.  2020 has proven to be a journey unlike any other, and at times I've wondered how we ended up down this rabbit hole.  But while the world continues the search for a "new normal" I continue the search for all things prog.  This week I go "off grid" just a bit and check out the latest from Neal Morse, Mike Portnoy, and Randy George (MPG), "Cov3r to Cov3r."  

As the album title suggests this is their third installment of cover songs, and coincidentally they have also released the "Cover to Cover Anthology (Vol. 1-3)" at the same time.  This is a 3-CD set with volumes one and two re-sequenced and remastered and includes the newly released volume three.  For the sake of this review I will stick with "Cov3r to Cov3r (Volume 3)."

To me the challenge is listening to a cover of any song on its own merits; not comparing a cover to the original recording is all but impossible.  Sometimes the cover simply blows the original away, much like the Talking Head's version of "Take Me the the River."  Then there's the added level of intrigue when the live cover smokes the studio version of the cover...but let's not go there today...

Rather, let's jump in with no preconceived ideas with "Black Coffee in Bed."  The familiar opening does remind one of Squeeze; the subtle keys and drums with the underlying guitar carry you right down memory lane.  It seems as if MPG is trying to stay true to Difford and Tillbrook's original inspiration for the song where I was looking for more of a unique interpretation,  a la 801 covering "Tomorrow Never Knows."  However; the nostalgic vibe oozing from this song is something to enjoy.  Neal does manage to grab you by the ears with his vocals while Mike and Randy chime in on the backing chorus with an almost paradoxical charm. 

Another cut I found intriguing is "Hymn 43," a Jethro Tull original.  For me this was a difficult song to cover mainly because it is so identifiable...as soon as the intro starts your mind is taken to Ian Anderson belting out those vocals, wrapped ever so tightly around some masterful drums and keys.  However; on this song MPG really shines--this is the kind of rebuild I look for in a cover.  Yeah, you recognize the song right away--that is the point after all.  But when a band "carves their initials" into it much like the bark of a mighty oak, you know you've found a real gem.  Everybody pours their all into this production; Neal's vocals are blood raw, Mike gives ounce of energy he has to the drumming, and Randy takes the keyboards to another level.  

Liner Notes...as spelled out in their name, MPG is Neal Morse on vocals, keyboards, and guitars, Mike Portnoy on drums and vocals, and Randy George on bass and keyboards.  Having made names for themselves elsewhere in the prog garden, this seemed like a logical place for the guys to expand their horizons as it were and play music that one would not expect from them; just stuff they enjoy.  A great way to let fans and loyal followers know where their influences came from and what kind of music they enjoy listening to when not making their own.

I for one like to "get inside the mind" of a musician or peak behind the curtain on a band and find out what inspires them and/or discover their interpretation of what they listen to, another reason I enjoy covers. I remember feeling quite surprised to find out Chris Squire of Yes was a fan of The Fifth Dimension, a pop group my mother was absolutely in love with in the 70s. 

Back on track here, another impressive cover from this album is "Baker Street," originally recorded by Gerry Rafferty.  The tempo is a bit more upbeat and the song rocks a little heavier.  Mike's drums are more prominent on this version and the sax solo--the heart and soul of the original version--is handled quite nicely.  Neal goes all out on guitar as well; turning a song that wasn't high on his list of  preferred covers into one of the better songs on the album.  

You can purchase any or all of the "Cover to Cover" albums at insideoutmusic.  All three artists have Facebook and Twitter pages if you have the urge to "fan stalk" them as well.

My last takeaway on the album is "One More Red Nightmare."  You knew I was going there eventually, right?  I have heard this song covered by several bands, most of which consist of members with a first degree connection to Robert Fripp.  The more distanced association here made the song all the more intriguing to me, and I came away impressed.  The sax was on a par with Mel Collins and Neal drove the guitar right through your brain like a railroad spike driven by John Henry himself.  

Below, a clip to put you in the mood; "It Don't Come Easy."  This one helps remind you that prog artists have many facets to their personality and music preferences.  This was a great pop song when it first hit the airwaves and MPG grabbed that vibe by the shoulders, shook it a few times, then pumped it up a notch.  


There you have it fellow progheads, a little bit of fun as The Concert Closet takes a side street and explores the artists behind the prog curtain more than the music played in front of it.  Knowing where musicians get their inspiration or simply finding out what they like to listen to can shed a bit of light on who they are when no one is looking, and why they do what they do they way they do...  

Back to the search for all things prog now, as the journey delves deeper into the prog garden nd discovers more of the good things to be had in 2020...until next time...

Sunday, October 11, 2020

The Tangent "Auto Reconnaissance"

 Welcome as always fellow progheads to the Closet Concert Arena.  Autumn is starting her parade of color here in these parts, which may have influenced my thought process when it came to review time.  I settled in with The Tangent this week, a colorful prog band if there ever was one.  Band leader Andy Tillison has never been one to shy away from the spotlight, nor has he been known to desire all the attention in the room.  He does, however present himself and his music in such a way as to demand it be taken on his terms.  

The Tangent is prog music for today; insightful, well written, well performed, and unafraid of what the critics have to say.  For me the music is shrewd, energizing, relevant, exciting, and perhaps a bit humorous.  But enough banter, on to the music...


The opening number is called "Life On Hold."  Instant energy races through the headphones; I am reminded of the opening of a Yes concert in their heyday.  The upbeat tempo is a welcome burst of intensity--but I expect nothing less from Andy.  The keyboards are the focus on this cut along with the vocals; The Tangent has transitioned perfectly from their previous album to this latest adventure.

Next song to be hit by the laser is "The Midas Touch."  A more somber opening is short-lived as the tempo once again builds on its own energy.  The canvas is splayed with bright hues that, while not blinding, do reflect that "Midas Touch."  Top notes of Camel rise to the surface and perhaps a hint of Marillion, but The Tangent are definitely in a section of the prog garden all their own.  This is a perfect song for the current state we're all in; there is a silver lining to the cloud hanging over the planet.  


Liner Notes...Originating in Pately Bridge, North Yorkshire, UK, The Tangent are Andy Tillison on vocals and keyboards as well as the lyricist and composer for the band, Luke Machin on guitar, Jonas Reingold on bass, Theo Travis on sax and flute, and Steve Roberts on drums.   

The Tangent have filled the prog garden with their prog stylings on 17 albums over the course of nearly two decades.  They enjoy a very loyal fanbase and have earned a reputation--deservedly so--as a band unafraid to take on society and everything that entails while not not getting bogged down in the drudgery.  With influences ranging from ELP to Return to Forever, this latest album is just one more unique offering from a band that refuses to be pigeon-holed or hog-tied to someone else's definition of what prog should be.  The refreshingness is so damn invigorating...

Learn  more about The Tangent and purchase their music at thetangent and insideoutmusic.  You can follow the band on facebook and Twitter @thetangentmusic

I played the next song, "Jinxed in Jersey" several times simply because it's as smooth as a pair of silk pajamas.  If you were looking for The Tangent's jazz fusion connection you just found it.  Andy tells a story with a clever, somewhat wry sense of humor.  The keyboards cruise through like a speed boat across a serene lake; this song is AOR with a zest of lime.  



The cut below was chosen as an example of the wide range of acreage The Tangent occupies in the prog garden.  "The Tower of Babel" is a nod to the excess of excess; the blind spot people have when it come to have vs. need.  When Andy sings "you can treat me like piece of dirt...you can screw the system up, you know what to do, before the system screws you" he is just telling it like it is--although no one really wants to be on the receiving end of a jab like that.  Andy can be as stinging as Warren Zevon and as eloquent as Dave Cousins with his lyrics...with a voice as soothing as Van Morrison on both counts.

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    Once again fellow progheads we find ourselves at the end of another chapter here in the Concert Closet.  The Tangent and bands like them are just what the prog garden needs right now; pertinent, on the cutting edge, not afraid to speak their minds.  Andy put it best when he said, "I utterly refuse to accept that progressive rock music is some kind of museum piece.  It is actually a living and breathing movement that has a past, a present, and above all, a future..."  

This is what keeps me coming back to the prog garden every day--the desire by a band and/or artist who wants to be heard on their own terms and not forced to meet someone else's definition of what it is they do.  Don't get me wrong; the glory days of King Crimson, Yes, Pink Floyd, Gentle Giant, Genesis
et al. are worthy of all the praise heaped on them.  But the prog world did not end--much to the chagrin of thousands--in 1975.  It continues today and thankfully has evolved.  Which, by definition, it was supposed to do.

So the search for all things prog continues on as the journey has no end...until next time...

Saturday, September 19, 2020

Alcantara "Solitaire"

 Hello again fellow progheads and welcome back to The Closet Concert Arena.  Summer 2020 is beginning her swan song as Autumn starts to appear on the horizon; the nights are longer and cooler, the  humidity has retreated behind cool summer breezes, and the sun is no longer a blazing beacon burning a hole through your entire body.

This change of mood led me to some introspection which in turn led me to the Progressive Gears Records stable of artists.  Consequently, the Concert Closet traveled to Sicily to host Alcantara, who recently released their debut album "Solitaire."  Haven't been to Italy in way too long so I am excited to get started...


The album opens with "After the Flood" and immediately the headphones are filled with a gentle and soothing balm, perfect for the mind.  Soft guitar is entwined with delicate vocals drawing you inward toward a dim light illuminating the darkness where memories reside.  Good?  Bad?  That depends on the perspective of the listener, no?                              

Next up is "Bad Bones," another dark song dancing enticingly on the edge of macabre.  The sultry guitar gives way to solid percussion as vocals permeate the headphones with a gentle tone...and every now and then they pierce with the unobtrusive force of a scalpel.  The top notes vary in intensity throughout this song; ranging from Big Big Train to Seconds Before Landing to Pink Floyd.  

Liner Notes...As I mentioned previously, Alcantara hails from Sicily and is comprised of Francesco Venti on lead guitar and keyboards, Salvo DiMauro on guitar, Sebastiano Pisasale on bass, Sergio Manfredi on vocals and lyrics, and Alessio Basile on drums.  Other musicians participated in the recording of this album; Gionata Colaprisca, Andrea Quarolli, Saro Figurra, and Alessio Bano each contributed to different tracks.

A debut concept album, while almost the norm in the prog garden today, rarely hits a nerve so succinctly as "Solitaire" does.  Alcantara peeled the band-aid off a wound that has  everyone talking and many taking action; the decline of societal and political classes.  People are tired of being left out of the conversation while at the same time being used for the political and financial gain of others.  Alcantara gives voice to that argument, urging the masses to resist and make change.

Moving down the playlist, the third song here is aptly titled "The Resistance."  The song opens with the Lawrence Ferlinghetti poem "Pity the Nation" spoken over a steady bass line and the dark, quiet hum of the keyboard...Sergio then pierces the veil with softly sung lyrics that penetrate the soul.  Alcantara    uses prose written decades ago beautifully to speak to society's ills today; lessons yet unlearned...

Learn more about the band at Progressivegears and purchase the album at bandcamp. You can follow Alcantara on Facebookinstagram, and Twitter @bandalcantara

For a few reasons I believe the clip below is very apropos for your listening pleasure this week.  First off, it is in line withe the mission Alcantara is on.  The "I Can't Breathe" sessions include three live versions of songs from the "Solitaire" album; "Logan," "Bad Bones," and "After the Flood."  The band also participated in the Wellbeing Festival on Great Music Stories.  

While the Concert Closet is a gateway to the prog garden and the prog garden is a peaceful place where one can simply enjoy great prog, the theme of the "Solitaire" album and the events related to the recording of the "I Can't Breathe" EP deserve mention.  Music has always been a vital part of societal change and the prog garden is fertile ground for a positive revolution.  That the music is pretty darn good only helps the cause...


So fellow progheads, we come to the end of another music filled week.  The prog rock genre is filled with many bands and artists that view the world through a different lens and use that vantage point to tell their story.  That is something I believe we can all appreciate today.

Alcantara come straight at you with a definite purpose, yet they do so without making you feel like you need to defend yourself.  Their music is hard-hitting without being obtrusive noise; they demand your attention and make their point without sidetracking the issue.  Yes they call for resistance and denounce the polarized state of the world, even calling for people not to follow like sheep--but they do it without using violence as the go-to option. 

 So the search for all things prog continues.  The journey thus far has criss-crossed the planet with no end in sight...and that is fine with me.  Until next time...

Saturday, September 12, 2020

Lonely Robot "Feelings Are Good"

Socially distanced greetings fellow progheads!  Continuing the search for all things prog despite a global pandemic has proven to be entertaining, educational, fun, and exciting.  I can accept being forced to stay home as long as I don't have to "stay home," and traveling the prog garden allows me to do just that.

This week we check in on the latest from Lonely Robot; "Feeling Are Good."  The album was released in July, the fourth in the Lonely Robot catalog.  After completing the "Astronaut Trilogy," John took a different trajectory with his latest work. So let's travel the tangent road and listen to what awaits the eager ears...


The title cut opens the album much like a futuristic appeal to the senses, a la The Alan Parsons Project from the "I Robot" days.  Switch gears as we flow seamlessly to "Into the Lo-Fi" and the tempo picks up immediately.  This is a high energy band much like Mile Marker Zero  and  The Tangent.  John Mitchell  continues to pump energy through the headphones and send it pulsing through your veins.  


Next up is "Army of One."  Off on a different tack, this song starts with a quick shot of adrenaline that tamps itself down...only to thrust itself right back at you.   Lonely Robot pelts you with feelings from every direction here; a man going to war with himself.  Fighting an inner battle so many are familiar with yet a subject so often ignored or misunderstood...but feelings are good--right?

This song marches into "Grief is the Price of Love" so smoothly you almost fall into an abyss you never realized was there.  The gentle vocals pull the heart strings with an acoustic guitar accompaniment that is as elegant as it is somber.  So many emotions....

Liner Notes...Lonely Robot is the solo outlet for John Mitchell.  As a member of Kino, Frost*, It Bites, and Arena, John has managed to keep himself occupied.  Lonely Robot is the outlet John uses to release his inner spirit.  The music is ornate, delicate, bold, introspective, and at times in-your-face.  Yes, feelings are good...

Along with writing, recording producing, and mixing the album, John plays guitar, bass, and keyboards as well as laying down the vocal tracks.  He did, however, have Craig Blundell behind the drum kit.  

Learn more about John Mitchell and Lonely Robot and purchase the music at johnmitchell and 
insideoutmusic.  You will also find them on facebook and Twitter @LordConnaught.

Another song from the playlist this week, "Keeping People as Pets" continues the trajectory into the emotional stratosphere this album has taken.  The tempo runs high as John hits you with lyrics that crawl inside your head and sprawl out, making you ponder reality.  One of the many things I like about Lonely Robot is every album is a concept unto itself and every song within that concept pulls on a thread and doesn't stop until it unravels the world you (previously) found comfort in.  

There are times Lonely Robot comes off as loud and full throttle as Liquid Tension Experiment, and other times when the music is gentle and introspective as Tears For Fears.  John delves into a lot on this album...his songs peeling back the layers as you take a journey through the mind.  His lyrics have always been a strong suit; John paints a vivid picture with his words.

The ear candy to hook you this week is called "Spiders."  The deliberate, slow, steady piano that opens the song accompanies lyrics that are themselves slow, dark, and calculated.  Is that fear you sense or simply trepidation about what is behind the curtain separating you from the unknown?  Feelings are good, yes--but they have a way of clouding the senses, don't they?  The top  notes of Frost* aren't coincidental; the influence crashes through here...
  
Place the headphones on...relax, reflect, repeat...


I hope this one struck a chord with you fellow progheads; Lonely Robot has shown indeed that "Feelings Are Good."  John is able to do with lyrics what Robert Fripp is able to do with his guitar...perhaps they should join forces on an album in the future?   For now I'm content with Lonely Robot finding new axes to grind and different lenses through which to view the landscape.

Let the search for all things prog carry on; until next time...

Saturday, August 22, 2020

Electric Mud "Quiet Days on Earth"

Hello and welcome to the Concert Closet fellow progheads!  We are now officially winding down the "dog days of summer" as the prog garden continues to reap a mighty harvest.  This month I venture back to Germany for a visit with a band I discovered a few years ago.  It has been very enjoyable to listen to Electric Mud and experience first-hand how their sound has grown, expanded, and matured.

Germany isn't exactly known as a "prog hotspot" the way other countries are perhaps, but it is home to some excellent music and artists nonetheless.  Electric Mud is such a band so I am excited to listen in on their latest release "Quiet Days on Earth."  Their music has ventured all over the prog garden on their previous albums; hard-hitting blues, avant-garde jam sessions, dark post rock, and jazz fusion to stir your memory.  So my curiosity is piqued; what surprises are in store this time around?



First song queued up is "Adventures in a Liquid World."  The song opens as gentle as a stone skimming across a lake; the serenity of the scene broken by the quiet interruption of a guitar rippling through the headphones.  There are genuine top notes of the Discipline-era King Crimson bantering across this piece; the ambient tranquility is beautiful.  The canvas is streaked with soft hues meant to calm the listener.  The tempo changes are striking mainly because the mood continues to caress your inner being. 

The next song to ebb through the headphones is "Eyes Watching Skies."  The keyboards that open the piece immediately take me to an Alan Parsons Project-like concept...something along the lines of a macabre dance to the story's epilogue .  However; the mood changes quickly yet subtly and you feel yourself floating in space--indeed watching the sky change from that gentle crystal blue to a mild gray to a darkness lit by the stars.  So much happening in less than four minutes.  The drums are surrounded on all sides by keyboards that at first seem to channel Keith Emerson in that moment before he slays the organ, fading smoothly into Jordan Rudess caught in one of his deeper moments of poignant thought...

Liner Notes...the mind behind the conceptual sounds belongs to one Hagen Bretschneider who also plays bass.  He is joined by Nico Walser who performs all other instruments, is co-composer, and engineers the album.  Guitar riffs on the album are performed by Lennart Hueper.

This latest release from Electric Mud is ambient music meets 70's prog meets post-progressive music.  Think Brian Eno working with Tangerine Dream   with hints of Talking Heads on their "Remain In Light" tour edging on the perimeter.  Hagen and Nico have created a sound and accompanied it with striking visuals; the canvas runs vividly with many hues.  Emotion is brought to life a la Abstract Aprils, albeit with a bit more flair.

Learn more about Electric Mud, check out their entire catalog, and make a purchase at their website
ElectricMud and bandcamp.  You can follow the band on Facebook and Twitter @Electricmudd.

One more song to captivate your senses;  "The Loneliness of the Somnambulist."  There is an odd, almost foreboding mood flowing through the headphones on this cut.  Electric Mud captures your attention by painting vivid pictures with every color of the spectrum; the dark hues are tinged with the exuberant colors of daylight dancing on the horizon.  In much the way Robert Fripp and Eno, Moebius, and Roedelius brought music to life without using words, so to Electric Mud has tapped that vein.

I chose "Wading Through the Waters of Time" as your aural teaser this week because it puts on full display all the genius behind the curtain.  Hagen and Nico have crossed into yet another section of the prog garden with this album.  Electric Mud doesn't reinvent itself every time out per se, but they are very good at stretching the boundaries and expanding their soundscape...please to enjoy...


                      

I hope you enjoyed the music this week fellow progheads.  Electric Mud comes at you with visuals as well as sounds; images to translate the music and allow you to focus and submerge yourself...forgetting the world around you even if it's just for a little while.  Prog rock in this section of the prog garden is nothing short of an out-of-body experience...

Now the search for all things prog starts out on a new journey...until next time...

Caligula's Horse "Rise Radiant"

Hello again fellow progheads!  The Closet Concert Arena continues its journey through the prog garden with a stop in Australia this week.  A band I visited a while ago and have had on my radar ever since, Caligula's Horse, recently released "Rise Radiant," the fifth album in their catalog and third on the Inside Out Music label.  I enjoy catching up with bands that have expanded their acreage in the prog garden, so let the journey begin...




"The Tempest" opens things up with a quick energy shot; the needle approaches red as soon as the curtain is lifted.   Heavy guitar wraps itself around the lining of your skull as drums work like bumpers, allowing the keyboards to bounce around the perimeter and all the while the guitar holds everything in its grasp.  There are top notes of Dream Theater and Spock's Beard running through the music; the high energy and color explosions that hit the canvas keep the adrenaline going...

Next up is "Autumn."  With this song you can (almost) forget everything I just said about Caligula's Horse blowing the doors off the barn--this song is the newborn colt stumbling to stand on matchstick legs while mom watches, ready to break the fall.  There are subtle top notes of Steely Dan and I am reminded of Fire on Dawson as well.  The soft overtones of this song complement the band's ability to roam the entire prog garden  expanding their sound and pushing the envelope.  The vocals are rough silk; smooth with a deceptively frayed edge.

Liner Notes...calling Brisbane, Australia home, Caligula's Horse is Jim Grey on vocals, Sam Vallen on lead guitar, Adrian Goleby on guitar, Dale Prinsse on bass, and Josh Griffin on drums.  With four albums on their resume prior to the release of "Rise Radiant," Caligula's Horse has established themselves firmly within the contemporary metal section of the prog garden.

This album explores the human experience--no blinders here; nothing one dimensional or limiting the view.  And much like the human experience, "Rise Radiant" strikes deep, skims the surface, explodes across the canvas with a boldness that can be blinding, and then looks through an introspective lens that is reticent and reserved.  Yes, Caligula's Horse has been busy traversing the prog garden gaining valuable insight.

Learn  more about Caligula's Horse at Facebook  and purchase the album at Inside Out.  You can also follow them on Twitter @CaligulasHorse and Instagram caligulashorse.

Finally this week I piped "Dream the Dead" through my headphones.  The immediate head rush came full tilt; Caligula's Horse is very adept at thumping the perimeter of your skull to prepare you for the music onslaught that is about to invade the premises.  But this song goes one better; it leads you on a journey through darkness punctuated with bright strobe lights your mind races to follow.

Top notes of Opeth run rampant across the canvas until the song takes a reflective tangent and hooks you with a touch of The Mute Gods.  The drums and guitar are ornate while the music as a whole rides the mood elevator up and down your spine...a most invigorating feeling...

For your ear candy this week I chose "Slow Violence."  The song comes at you like the title suggests; slow and deliberate with the intention of leaving you changed for the experience.  There are faint top notes of Transatlantic flowing through this piece, as if the urge to break out and let loose is pulsating in Sam's temple.  The restraint does the song justice as Jim picks up the vibe and carries it through strong vocals.  I am reminded of Between the Buried and Me musically; the unity is evident and everyone builds off the others' energy.

Start the day with a bit of high velocity...

                    

And that, fellow progheads, puts one more week of the dystopian world of 2020 in the record books.  Seems the best, and possibly safest, place to spend time these days is in the prog garden.  Luckily there is quite a bountiful harvest just waiting for you.  So enjoy Caligula's Horse and sit back and enjoy the rest of the journey.  The search for all things prog continues...until next time...

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Apostle "Sky Above Me"

Greetings fellow progheads!  Welcome as always to the Concert Closet.   This week the search for all things prog turns up the heat as we venture across the pond for a visit with our friends at Progressive Gears Records.  One of the bands in the Progressive stable, Apostle, recently released their "debut" EP, "Sky Above Me."  PGR has a lot of stellar bands in their stable so let's check out what I hope will be another fine performance...


The album opens with a song called "Reaper" and the imagery the music evokes is quite fitting.  The guitars sit heavy on top while keyboards move in and out, beefy at times before then letting up...and the chase is on.  The song puts hands around your throat but doesn't give that fatal squeeze--although there are finger marks from the tight grip.  Top notes of Marillion are scattered throughout as the canvas fills with bright primal colors outlined in darkness...

Next song to be hit by laser is "Last Goodbye."  an unexpectedly poignant piano gently pulls back the curtain on gentle lyrics.  A son paying tribute to his mother is usually a heartfelt moment and Apostle drives the point home with guitar that hits hard at just the right moments.  An unexpected flash of vulnerability from a band that seems to prefer the more boisterous section of the prog garden...

Liner Notes...Apostle hails from Yorkshire, England and the current line-up is comprised of Ryan Hanson on vocals, Chris Allen on keyboards, Richard Lidster on guitar, Shaun Ellis on bass, and Marcus Murray on drums.  Starting out as Apostles of Chaos, the band took a brief hiatus in 2019 to determine the next steps in their journey.

Drawing from classic rock, prog, metal, and other genres under the rock 'n' roll umbrella, Apostle adopted their new name and dove headlong into the growth and inner reflection needed to distinguish and claim their own identity. With this release Apostle makes an absolute statement about who they are and justify the battle to claim their own acreage in the prog  garden.


Learn more about Apostle and purchase their music at their website Apostle and the home of their label PGR.  You can also find them at bandcamp and on facebook.  For those so inclined, you can follow the band on Twitter @AOC_Bandpage_UK.

My final play for review this week is "The Fire Within."  The tempo is turned up on this cut as the guys feed off each other's energy.  Hints of Deep Purple and a dash of Magnum flow through the headphones as the canvas runs with colors bright; painted with heavy strokes.

The song I bring to you as a taster from this EP buffet is "Reaper;" to whet your appetite and prepare you for a full serving from the band.  Apostle taps their inner hard rock DNA and fills your head with wild imagery and an ominous darkness that is pierced straight through with a bright light--just when you think the fateful blow is about to strike...

                   

So fellow progheads, a little high energy metal from the prog garden this week to get your adrenaline going.  However; Apostle hasn't painted themselves into a corner by being "just" a metal band; they have other arrows in their quiver.  Deep lyrics, heavy guitar, gentle piano, hard hitting drums...and
all of it comes together nicely on this five song EP.

The search for all thing prog forges onward as the journey continues...until next time...