Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Deep Energy Orchestra "Playing With Fire"

Hello fellow progheads; welcome once again to The Closet Concert Arena!  Spring is in full bloom and the prog garden is bursting with some incredible music.  This week the search for all things prog goes off on a bit of a tangent to check in with a musician I have respected and admired for many years.  His career has crossed paths with several great bands and many talented artists...for the next 168 hours I celebrate the music of Trey Gunn and Deep Energy Orchestra.


Trey is probably best known for his time in King Crimson, and followers of this blog will (hopefully) remember a 2013 review I wrote of his amazing work in KTU.  But for now we celebrate Trey's latest project, Deep Energy Orchestra, and their debut release "Playing With Fire."

Opening track "The Return" is a soothing balm for all that ails you.  The strings are mesmerizing as they float between an inner stillness and an uptempo train ride through Bangladesh.  I feel a Ravi Shankar vibe flowing through this piece, albeit with a bit more flair.  The percussion gels with the bass line in such a seamless synergy you might think it all flows from one body...this band is as tight as Ebeneezer Scrooge...

Next piece of music to fill the headphones is "Mysterious World." This one leaps out of the gate and completely surrounds the perimeter of your skull with an aura that is as relaxing as it is stimulating.  Deep Energy Orchestra channels King Crimson on this cut; Trey celebrates his roots rather than leave them behind.

Liner Notes...in addition to Trey Gunn on Warr guitar, Deep Energy Orchestra is Jason Everett/AKA Mr. E on 7-string fretless and 6-string acoustic bass, Radhika Iyer on 7-string electric violin, Anil Prasad on tabla, Rachel Nesvig on violin, Aleida Gehrels on viola, Phil Hirschi on cello, and V. Selvaganesh on konjira and custom drum kit.  You get the idea that the group is heavy on strings, but that can almost be misleading.  The soundscapes and images created flow so effortlessly and work so well together you forget how many people are required to put it all together; the band becomes an aside to the music...

The album was recorded live in Seattle, WA over a two-day period as part of an Artist Residency Award.  Classical meets funk meets jazz meets Indian-style is a section of the prog garden I would consider at best scarcely populated...so the awe factor is in play.

Final selection is "Awakening" and the title is quite apropos.  As the guitar nudges you and drums gently poke your ribs, the canvas begins to fill with the brightness of the day. I cannot emphasize enough how tight this group is; they seem to draw strength from and feed confidence to each other.  Trey has always been one to venture far from the conventional and with Deep Energy Orchestra he is absolutely blazing a new trail.

There is a tranquil intensity to the entire album and you can make your purchase at DeepEnergyOrchestra  and bandcamp.  There is also the proverbial Facebook link and you will find Trey on Twitter @treygunn.

To fill your mind and soul this week I bring you "The Return."  I chose this cut because it offers insight into the Deep Energy Orchestra world; a glimpse not just behind the curtain but inside the creative minds of what this band is all about.  You are privy firsthand to the pleasure and joy this group exudes; Trey is a beacon of positive energy and Mr. E has found his happy place.  Let this one play on a loop a few times and all the negative aura in your world will fall away.  Somewhere George Harrison and Ravi Shankar are smiling...


                   

Thus ends another week of music and mind exploration in the prog garden.  Deep Energy Orchestra is a great example of why the prog genre casts such a wide net; the soundscapes developed here fused with that funk and jazz heartbeat make this an album unlike any I have played in quite a long time--if at all.  Trey took the road less traveled and working with giants in their own right put together a wonderful album that you will want to play over and over.

Of course the search for all things prog doesn't stop so the journey continues...until next time...

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Machines Dream "Revisionist History"

Good evening fellow progheads! So far The Closet Concert Arena 2019 Edition has brought to light a superb cross section of new and under-the-radar progressive rock bands, artists, and music.  Keeping this trend going I travel this week to the Canadian tundra hoping to avoid the "Philippines-Canada Trash War" as I visit with friends making a return visit.


Machines Dream is another member of the Progressive Gears Records prog rock stable (told you there were a lot of talented bands over there).  They recently released "Revisionist History," a remixed/remastered collection of their first two albums.  This is a band that caught my attention when they first appeared in the prog garden so this stroll back to their beginnings should be interesting...

 My first morsel is "Trading Stars for Solitude."  The song opens softly, much like a morning sunrise coming into full view over a hillside.  The guitar leads you down the path and keyboards begin to pick up the pace.  Machines Dream comes into full bloom as the music fills the canvas with a cool, bright, pleasing  array of color.  The beginning of a soothing roller coaster ride...

The second song to emit from the headphones, "Mad for All Seasons," moves the tempo meter a bit.  I like a song that builds momentum like this...top notes of Rush in that regard.  Starcastle seems to splash across this cut; there is a carefree vibe that resonates like wading along the beach mid low tide.

Machines Dream travels across the prog garden deliberately and purposefully, leaving their mark in the metal and cinematic sections while traipsing through the more ominous and brooding sections as well.  This is a band firmly in control of their own destiny taking their sound to the masses.

Liner Notes...Machines Dream resides in Sault Ste. Marie Ontario, Canada.  Having been featured here a few times in the past, Machines Dream should be known to the Concert Closet faithful.

This being their first two albums remixed/remastered to "sound as they deserve to be with original missing tracks included"  it seems only logical to mention Will Geraldo for the mastering and Craig West for the producing.  The music was of course played by Keith Conway, Craig West, Marco Pierucci, Ken Coulter, Brian Holmes, and Shayne Wigglesworth.

One more cut for review; "Toronto Skyline."  One of the things Machines Dream does so well is make you think; the opening lyrics go straight to your thought processors, firing up the cerebellum.  The resulting imagery is quite striking as the canvas fills with dark hues that are highlighted with bright streaks of starlight piercing the veil of night.  There are top notes of Pink Floyd flowing through this cut and emotions drip from the music like raindrops running down the kitchen window...

You can purchase this album and the entire Machines Dream library at these websites; progressive gears records,
big cartel and bandcamp.  Tune in to Facebook and Twitter @MachinesDream to keep up with all the latest on the band.

The musical interlude this week is "The Session."  The opening voice over is hauntingly Big Brotherish as the tempo begins to build...and then the proverbial smack in the head.  Machines Dream looks at everything the world can throw at you through a different lens, reflecting on how chance can make life almost temperamental; here today gone tomorrow with no rhyme or reason as to why.  I like it when the music makes you think and entertains all at once...

                     

Once again my fellow progheads the sand has slipped through the hourglass quicker than the sun dropping below the horizon on a clear night...and as we reflect on the music we feel sated.

Machines Dream has done justice to their early recordings; consider "Revisionist History" the cleaned up version of what actually was a pretty darn good first draft.  With time, experience, and some talented friends behind the curtain this is an excellent collection.  The band no doubt feels some satisfaction in saying, "This is the way we meant these songs to be heard" without coming off pretentious.  Knowledge is a mighty sword, and Machines Dream wields it like few other up and coming bands do...I appreciate that.

Now of course the search for all things prog carries on...until next time...

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Lonely Robot "Under Stars"

Hello again fellow progheads!  Always a pleasure to welcome you back to The Closet Concert Arena as the search for all things prog continues deeper into 2019.  This week the journey rounds back to London and a visit with Lonely Robot.  Their latest release "Under Stars" is on Inside Out Music, the third installment of a three album journey begun in 2015.  More than a one album concept, "Under Stars" brings closure to a concept trilogy...this is looking to be an intense week...



The album opens with "Terminal Earth," an instrumental piece that evokes images of Earth as seen from the Moon; an introduction of sorts to a wondrous journey we are about to embark on.  As the music fades/bleeds into the next cut, "Ancient Ascendant," the tempo gets an energy shot.  The mood is very interstellar; I'm careening through time and space at warp speed.  Lonely Robot is setting up the concept finale in grand style...

Settling into another song, I opt for "The Only Time I Don't Belong Is Now."  The atmosphere is still thick with an otherworldly vibe; there are definite top notes of Dream Theater and Spock's Beard looming overhead...floating around the room like an aromatic cloud.  The canvas is shrouded with grays that seem to explode randomly with bursts of light...the imagery that oozes from this album is stunning...

Liner Notes...the Lonely Robot behind the curtain is John Mitchell.  You may know John as a member of Frost*, Kino, It Bites, and Arena among others.  Lonely Robot is the outlet John uses for his solo work.  While John plays guitar, bass, keyboards and sings vocals, he is joined on this leg of the trilogy by Steve Vantsis on bass and Craig Blundell on drums.

John wears many hats in the prog garden; singer, songwriter, guitarist, producer, and sound engineer; apparently he needs to keep himself busy.  There is an incredible array of music on this album and despite being a concept--the third and final chapter of that concept actually--the music moves across so much acreage of the prog garden that it defies the concept stigma.

 Following the sound, I come across another thought provoking cut, "When Gravity Fails."  One of the really intriguing things about the music of Lonely Robot is John's ability to paint an image with words that completely fits with the mood of the  song.  I close my eyes as this song streams through the headphones and I begin to feel alternately floating weightless and sinking like I'm wearing lead boots in the ocean.  There are flashes of Mile Marker Zero coming through along with a splash of Liquid Tension Experiment.  

You can purchase this album at InsideOutMusic and johnmitchell.  Find out more about Lonely Robot at Facebook and Twitter @LordConnaught.  You will also find links to John's other music including the first two installments in this concept trilogy.

Your siren this week is "How Bright is the Sun?"  The curtain draws back on elegant solitude as the song begins to crawl slowly through your head.  As vocals cross the threshold an intensity picks up slowly and deliberately; gentle keyboards float across the top like melted butter running down the side of a stack of pancakes...this song finds your happy place...

The canvas is specked with pastel hues surrounded by brighter streaks of primary color, apropos not only to this particular cut but the entire album.  Bask in the beauty that this song emits...

                      

Once again my fellow progheads time has run out on the week.  Lonely Robot brought the story full circle with this album; the culmination of a four year vision laid out in three stages.  The beauty of "Under Stars" lies not only in the music here, but also in how it so naturally followed the emotions and feeling laid out in the first two chapters of the story.  I like the fact that John's approach was to take each album as an individual work for it's own sake with the forethought that it would all come together in the end.

Stories cannot always be told in one sitting; they need time to come together and grow...to take on a life of their own.  What Lonely Robot brought to life here is something you appreciate as it plays back in your mind and you remember how fragile and exhilarating life can be.  John started by delving into where life as we know it really originated, carried it through the musings of an artist engrossed in all there is out there, and finally showed us how we waste so much time looking for life in all the wrong places.

The prog garden is filled with many like Lonely Robot; storytellers with vision and an ability to paint with sound.  It's part of what makes the search for all things prog so special, and of course the journey continues...until next time...

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Coma Rossi

Welcome once again to The Closet Concert Arena fellow progheads!  Spring finally has a solid grasp on the calendar and the prog garden is beginning to bloom!  This week the search for all things prog leads me back to my good friends at Progressive Gears Records; many a wonderful band on this label.

This week the  GPS is set for Bengaluru, India as I explore the sounds of Coma Rossi and their eponymous debut release.  I will admit there is a bit of excitement for me as I have not found much in the prog garden by way of India and I'm eager to check out new growth on fresh acreage...


The opening cut "Mirage" conjures up some remarkable imagery as the curtain is drawn back...you are standing ocean side; it's dark, cold, and a haunting sound calls to you.  Guitars and drums work their way into your head as you feel yourself being pulled underwater, carried by the tide.  Vocals put you at ease and you just sink into it all.  Coma Rossi fills the canvas with streaks of darkness...the top notes run from Dream Theater to the fringe of Haken. 

Traveling deeper into the sound I find "Jomolungma Is Far Away."  Continuing down the dark corridor Coma Rossi embarked on earlier, your mind begins to relax just as the tension starts to ratchet up.  Guitars lay down a groove with the keyboards smoothing out the rough edges, lulling you into a sense of peace before methodically turning up the heat.  I pick up slight hints of IQ on this cut along with aromatics of Violent Attitude If Noticed.  I'm beginning to sense there are many layers to this band and a desire to explore them starts to overtake...

Liner Notes...hailing from Bengaluru, India, Coma Rossi was originally formed in 2014.  The current lineup is Tom Borah on vocals, Udayan Kashalikar on bass and vocals, Gaurav Govilkar on guitars, Juby Thomas on keyboards, and Anupam Panda on drums. Four years from incarnation to initial album release may seem like a long time, but Coma Rossi made the wait worthwhile.  While there have been lineup changes (a reality for many a band), Gaurav and Udayan worked diligently to find fellow musicians who shared their passion for creating atmospheric, moody textures in music.

Coma Rossi signed with Progressive Gears Records in December 2018--the very day they released this album!  The pedigree seems solid and with PGR behind them Coma Rossi should reach a wider audience across the prog garden.

My third selection for review is "Stillborn."  For me this song has a more traditional, melodic Indian vibe. The drums are a solid foundation on which emotional guitars share the attention with keyboards...and Tom's vocals are absolutely beautiful.  When the fervor explodes in a manner reminiscent of Atomic Rooster, you sense a bit of sorrow tinged with determination; they decide their own fate.  Coma Rossi may hover in the darker, more subdued corners of the prog garden, but this song bursts with alternating rounds of energy mixed with a subdued passion.

Learn more about Coma Rossi at Progressive Gears.  You can purchase the album at their Bandcamp  or Bigcartel website.  Of course you can also connect directly with Coma Rossi on Facebook and
Twitter @comarossimusic.  

The musical interlude this week is the band's first single from the album, "Turn Back Time."  Close your eyes as the song begins; the sun is rising on a gorgeous day.  Vocals rain down gently as the drums mingle with soft spoken keyboards and smooth guitars to create an absolute burst of sunshine and hope.  Coma Rossi showcase an ability to reach beyond expectations with this cut; the sound is so full yet so melodic and poignant you feel yourself being absorbed into a wave of emotion sweeping through your headphones. Feel free to play this one a few times and allow it to fill your mind and spirit...  

                      

As the sun sets and the moon glow warms your inner spirit, Coma Rossi settles in your soul.  I hope this album captured your attention and you feel renewed; few bands today are capable of such a wide range of emotion with their song writing and performing.  While the dark hues can be dark and murky, the bright spots are wide open and filled with life, emotion, and passionate outbursts that can be joyous and extreme.

But now our time together winds down and the search for all things prog must continue the journey...until next week...

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Sproingg

A most appreciative hello and welcome back to The Closet Concert Arena fellow progheads!  The carousel we call 2019 is moving so fast I can't believe I haven't fallen off--or at least gotten dizzy!  As usual the Concert Closet logged serious frequent flyer miles this week as the search for all things prog went all the way to Germany to check in with yet one more new member of the prog garden, Sproingg, and their self-titled debut release.




Sproingg is best described as polyrythmic prog chaos...something from every corner of the prog garden.  First listen through takes me on a journey across strange terrain; classical, jazz, metal,
avant-garde, and a bit of funk.

The opening cut, "Sugarwax Nailface," starts off seemingly as an improv piece; everyone checking the others' vibe--and then a groove catches fire.  Almost like an undisciplined King Crimson with top notes of Happy Graveyard Orchestra and Dreadnaught, the music comes at you from several directions, bouncing through your cerebrum like  a pinball.

Moving a bit farther along I discover "Homunculous Funkulous."  A percussion opening that really needs to be heard to be appreciated, this piece has hints of Flim & The BB's roaming around flirting with the Violent Femmes.  Sproingg is a band that likes to have fun while reminding you they are serious  musicians.  The simplicity and nakedness adds a level of intrigue to their sound; I imagine a stage with three lights and a broom standing in the corner while the audience hangs on every note being played.  Sproingg opens their songs with a spotlight on one member and then methodically brings the rest of the band in...like folding cheese into a sauce; the sum is so much better than the parts...

Liner Notes...originating in Freiberg Germany, Sproingg is Prudi Bruschgo on guitars, Johannes Korn on Chapman Stick and electric violin, and Erik Feder on drums and percussion.  I imagine Sproingg being the German equivalent of an American garage band much like The Foo Fighters.  Not in the way they sound--but in their approach to making music.  I would also compare them to Scarlet INside in that sound can come from anywhere and be made with (almost) anything...Jamie Muir was a driving force in this arena many moons ago...

Although Sproingg  occupies territory in the polyrhythmic/syncopated rock section of the prog garden--a section that is not overpopulated at the moment--they stand even farther off center because their sound is performance based...which gives it (to me) a bit more credibility.  The recorded music is a snapshot of their playing at that moment; the live shows are a constant interpretation of their own sound...

Next up for dissection is "The Aliens Have Landed And I'm One Of Them."  This was a song written for improvisation if I've ever heard one.  The opening percussion work hearkens of Thank You Scientist as it escorts you down a path that is equal parts eerie and giddy.  The guitar floats in slowly surrounded by a chorus of other-worldly images that capture the imagination and keep you on the edge of your seat.  Top notes of Ozric Tentacles and Thrak-era King Crimson are filling my headphones at the moment; excuse me while I sit back and savor the moment...

Take in the full Sproingg experience at their  Facebook page and purchase the music at Sproingg.

This week I bring you a taste from the well; "No Place For Children" and "Krummfutter."  Sproingg  falls into a subgenre of prog I like to call minimalist because they do a lot with so little.  Three musicians are behind the curtain here and the imagery is quite vivid.  The sound rolls down the inside of your auditory sensors like warm fudge...slow and steady as you begin to realize how wonderful it all really is.  As one song bleeds into the next I get a Can meets The League of Gentlemen vibe; just dim the lights and let it wash over you...


                   

So my fellow progheads I hope you enjoyed this week's installment.  On the one hand Sproingg is not your dad's prog band--but on the other hand they absolutely spot on are.  As new bands continue to emerge in the prog garden it is refreshing to know they can draw on the standard bearers without being carbon copies.  Hell; Sproingg can't produce an exact replica of their own sound let alone someone else's.  And therein lies the beauty of prog; the ability to grow your own sound and style continually and not be boxed in.

This was a fun week for me but as always, all good things lead to other good things.  So time for the Concert Closet to take the search for all things prog onward yet again.  Until next time...

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

The Emerald Dawn "Nocturne"

Welcome back to The Closet Concert Arena fellow progheads!  Now that we are in full spring mode the search for all things prog is taking on a travel mindset.  This week the journey takes me back to the UK to check in with The Emerald Dawn and their latest release, "Nocturne."  This is album number three for the group, a symphonic prog band that blends classical, jazz, rock, and just a hint of metal to produce something quite unique in their section of the prog garden.


Dropping laser to disc, my first taste of this buffet is a song called "As Darkness Falls."  The headphones are immediately filled with a heavy brooding as the canvas is streaked with dark hues.  The Emerald Dawn is lavish like Dream Theater, eloquent like Gentle Giant, and multi-faceted like The Strawbs.  Their sound washes over you like high tide at a surf competition; knocking you down one minute and lifting you back up the next.  The intensity of the keyboards on this cut is much like stumbling across a bear while out hiking; the immediate adrenaline rush carries you away until things settle a bit and you allow the experience to replay inside your mind.

A haunting piano opens "Moonlight," the second course served up here.  The Emerald Dawn has a way of getting  not just under, but inside your skin and permeating your entire body.  The music begins by waltzing across my mind and slowly running down the inside of my neck, ultimately carrying to every part of my being.  The guitar picks up and rides a wave with the drums...and I am mesmerized.

Liner Notes...although originally formed in Edinburgh,Scotland, The Emerald Dawn has since taken up residence in St. Ives Cornwall in the southwest of England.  The band consists of Tree Stewart on keyboards, flute, acoustic guitar, and vocals; Ally Carter on electric and acoustic guitar, guitar synthesizer, tenor and soprano sax, keyboards, and vocals; David Greenaway on fretless and fretted bass guitar; and Tom Jackson on drums and percussion. 

The Emerald Dawn can be as ornate as ELP but without the flash and fanfare; they simply build a multi-layered sound that needs to be listened to so as to be fully appreciated.  Releasing their debut album in 2014 and a follow up in 2017, The Emerald Dawn is now three albums deep into their journey across the prog garden, one that should prove quite fruitful based on the bounty thus far. Their quest to create symphonic prog takes them across dark and somewhat rough terrain, but the landscape is what gives the music its character and credibility.  Notice the canvas streaked with ambient to dark hues...dripping down like so much mist in the night forest...

Learn more about The Emerald Dawn and purchase their music at The Emerald Dawn.  You can purchase "Nocturne" as well as their two previous albums and find out more about the band.  There is also Facebook for the modern day groupie as well as Twitter @TheEmeraldDawn1.  You will also find the band at bandcamp if you prefer to purchase downloads there.  The options are plentiful and its been awhile since I preached, but please support the artists!

One more slice of dark tranquility, "The Child Within."  This is a stunning work; just sit still and let it wash over you a few times.  The song opens with all the hoopla of a David Lynch movie; anticipation building on intensity.  There are top notes of Genesis and Uriah Heep floating through the room and Tree's vocals are reminiscent of Nico when she recorded with The Velvet Underground.  This is the cut that puts the "progressive" in progressive rock for The Emerald Dawn; there is so much happening on the periphery you almost get swallowed by the enormity of the production...and there's no shame in that.

And here is the point where I usually post a song to tempt you to open your wallet as well as your auditory sensors, but no ear candy this week.  You'll have to buy the album to get the music and you really should.  The Emerald Dawn has put together a beautiful record; "Nocturne" is a stroll through the symphonic section of the prog garden and the imagery is striking.


This album takes me back to when progressive rock was filled with "those bands," groups that paid attention with their hearts and souls; writing, performing, and producing music they believed in and letting the listener decide.  So many musicians today seem like they signed up for a job--not these folks.  The Emerald Dawn is in it for the long haul which is perfectly fine by me...The Closet Concert Arena always has time (and space) for another stellar performance!

Of course that can only mean one thing; time to take the search for all things prog back on the road...until next time... 

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

The Steve Bonino Project "Stargazer 2"

Springtime greetings fellow progheads!  Hard to believe the search for all things prog has crossed over the threshold into the spring equinox--2019 continues to sail on!  Now that the tundra is not quite so frozen I am finding a lot of great new growth in the prog garden.  This week's journey led me to a musician who has connections with many other members of the prog world--but in and of itself that is not so unusual.  The prog umbrella has expanded over the years while the prog community remains a tight knit one...

Steve Bonino is a multi-talented multi-instrumentalist who released his latest album, "Stargazer 2"  under the guise of The Steve Bonino Project.  A concept album dealing with a dystopian future where man has failed to care for the planet to the point Earth is no longer inhabitable, "Stargazer 2"  is a bit dark perhaps, but when the curtain is pulled back one never knows what lies on the far side, so hand me that rope, would you?



The album opens appropriately enough with "The Grand Finale."  Beautiful piano interlude leads you down an alley of uncertainty; the tempo is akin to running in the dark as you dart under spotlights  catching you stop-motion like.  The song moves quickly and despite opening on the gloomy side of town it manages to cross over to a brightly lit boulevard, careening through a world of mayhem...or is it just a dream?

The next song to pour through the headphones is "City Out Of Time."  We begin to look into the eyes of despair with this cut as clouds continue to roll in blocking out the light.  You feel a sense of relief as guitars begin to penetrate the haze and drums resonate around the room, but then the darkness begins to swallow you again...

Liner Notes...a native New Yorker currently based in sunny California,  Steve Bonino is the driving force behind The Steve Bonino Project, although the album was produced with some very accomplished, well known musicians joining in to add their talents to specific cuts.  The who's who runs deep; Peter Matuchniak  and Erik Johnson on guitars, Seth Lewis on backing vocals, and a drum corps that includes Mike Lewis, Jimmy Keegan, and Marco Minnemann.  I would say a few valedictorians in that class.  Heading out on the road Steve is keeping Peter and Jimmy on the team while adding Jonathan Sindelman, Mike Keneally, and Seth Romano.  Another stellar group with lots of A-List experience; this tour should be on your summer "must-see" list.

Another choice morsel spinning around the turntable is a song called "Broken Record" with a  melancholy opening that flirts with your moral compass.  Top notes of a 10cc/Gentle Giant  melange, the tune emits shards of light--hope--on the dystopian world we turned Mother Earth into while at the same time lamenting the continued shortcomings of even the best intentions; life is a broken record indeed...

Steve has been around the prog garden a few times.  Fans will remember he was part of the 2018 breakout band Bomber Goggles and their debut release, "Gyreland."  Steve has done extensive solo work, performed with many artists, and was involved with several groups having roots that run deep through the prog garden.  You can learn more about Steve and his pedigree at Steve Bonino.  There you will find links to this album and all of his music.  You will also find Steve on Facebook and Twitter @trippyone.

The listening portion of the blog this week is the final cut, "Fear."  Just as everything seems to be fading from sight this tune opens at high anxiety level; you're being trailed by an unknown evil you know is there but can't see.  The strings start to pull at your nerves while they seep into your consciousness..and the tension builds steadily.  The Steve Bonino Project comes full circle on the concept with this cut; the idea that man as a species mucks up everything he touches only to attempt half-hearted justification for all the wrongdoing.  The question of what to do next is always open-ended and while the song breaks through the veil in your mind separating logic from emotion, it leaves you with a sense of uncertainty--and isn't that the point?


                      

I enjoyed this album as much for the music as I did for the introspective lens it offers the listener to view it through.  Entertainment is the main goal of listening to music, but the beauty of prog is that it goes a step (or two) further.  Many of the standard bearers--and up and comers of today--make you think.  This album does both, entertaining you while urging you to use your cranium.  I put The Steve Bonino Project on a par with Seconds Before Landing, Scarlet INside, and Servants of Science for their ability to tap into the listener's cerebrum...

I hope this week's stroll through the prog garden did as much to relax and entertain you as it did to enlighten and excite you.  The Steve Bonino Project for me is a prog band that takes you on a journey and explains the sights along the way.  Speaking of which, the search for all things prog makes another stop on the journey soon...until next time...