Yacobs - Time Machine: Published on the Musea label in the year 2011, Time Machine is the fourth solo album of Argos' drummer Ulf Jacobs. Lyrically, it's about the fascination of time travelling, freely adapted from the famous novel by Herbert George Wells. Musically speaking, the album sounds like classical Progressive rock, with lots of Mellotron, Moog, Hammond organ and opulent drumming in the style of the Golden Seventies. Have fun listening!
Apocalypse - The 25th Anniversary Box Set: Apocalypse was the first Brazilian band signed by Musea for a new record. Released at the end of the Eighties, Lendas Encantadas (1989) revealed an exceptional band playing Progressive rock music full of energy, obviously inspired by Marillion. The reissue includes four bonus tracks recorded in 1996. The second album Perto Do Amanhecer (1995) proves to be in the same vein, but even better! These twelve concise pieces mix peaceful acoustic moments with more agressive and nearly hard-rock passages. And the Portuguese singing gives the music an exotic and very nice touch. Discover the warmth of this sunny music, when admiring the superb pictures included in the booklet.
Aurora Dos Sonhos (1996) displays a luxurious Progressive rock music, halfway between influences from the Italian school from the Seventies (Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso, Premiata Forneria Marconi, Quella Vecchia Locanda) and the recent neo Progressive efficiency. A successful and subtle mixing.
Refugio (2003) includes ten tracks (plus two bonus tracks) and a fantastic booklet with photos, lyrics and information about the band. More than the usual quality Progressive rock with symphonic influences, it delivers us those forgotten feelings like peace, love and compassion. It is, undoubtly, an album worth listening to!
Available on both CD and DVD formats, Live In Rio features the band performing at the Rio ArtRock Festival 2005. That's the occasion to discover a new repertoire, as well as old tracks sung by the newcomer Gustavo Demarchi. His particularity is to sing in English, unlike his predecessor. Thanks to this, the music sounds more neo Progresive than ever! One hour and a quarter of music you cannot afford to miss! The Bridge Of Light has been captured live in front of an enthusiastic Brazilian audience in November 2006. You just need to listen to the two opening songs to realize how good this band is: the first one gets closer to the best of Deep Purple, whereas the
second one strongly evokes Fish's Marillion. And what about the remaining tracks? They just sound like... Apocalypse!!
Timo Laine/Symphonic Slam - SSII: Symphonic Slam made history, being the first band issuing, in the year 1976, a piece of work that included synthesizer-guitars. Parallel to this, this self-titled opus has also been considered as a fine example of Seventies Progressive rock. Highly regarded by connoisseurs, it was reissued by the Musea label in the 2001. There was a second album by the group, SSII (1978) that eventually saw the light of day again a decade later, courtesy of Musea again.
Less renowned but deserving a lot more than this, this second attempt still highlights the instrument so dear to the leader Timo Laine. The name of the latter now appears in the band's name, and his picture appears on the cover of the album as well. The group itself evolved according to the tracks, featuring several musicians, such as the famous bass player Jimmy Haslip (Alan
Holdsworth, The Yellowjackets...) on three titles. Mostly instrumental, the disc sees the addition of four bonuses. Not to be missed!
Vincent Courtois - Live In Berlin: This work is a solo introspection, an inner journey of Vincent Courtois that reveals unexplored areas, filled with peaceful landscapes which are finely detailed and its consistency is rather fitting. Since Rose Manivelle is, Courtois knew, fond of stories explored through music, the warm tone and caressing of her cello tells us some stories, beauties ranging from dark ("Sensuel Et Perdu") to light ("Skins"). Each piece is designed as a short portrait, a reflection of emotion unspeakable in a register sometimes minimalist, with the disorder in a few notes and heavy weight of silence. To give the density and depth at its chiaroscuro (the haunting melody of "Couldn't Imagine It"), Courtois uses many re-recording. [...] This new Live In Berlin demonstrates again his creativity. [Roughly translated from the original French... -ed.]
Wobbler - Rites At Dawn: The proud Vikings of Wobbler may well make every established value of the present Progressive rock scene shake. Together with White Willow and Antidepressive Delivery, the American label The Laser's Edge was already at the top of the Scandinavian school. Its new Norwegian protege has settled means to become a major act. Hinterland (2005) is a splendid opus lasting about one hour, including three long tracks (plus a short overture) that are mainly instrumental (male vocals in English), that will undoubtedly remind of the highlights of Anglagard. A true gem for the melancholy, King Crimson-like riffs and Rickenbacker bass lovers. The keyboards player Lars Fredrik Froislie plays on a merely incredible collection of vintage instruments, of course featuring King Mellotron. You may also note that this album was co-produced by Jacob Holm-Lupo, White Willow's mentor. If you ever needed to buy only one CD during the year 2005, this could be the one...
Wobbler returned Afterglow (2009), an album including two long suites and three short pieces. Those who had discovered the band through pieces available online on the Internet, were maybe frustrated not to find them on the first album, will be delighted to hear that this album
features "Imperial Winter White"!
Last but not least, this composition is typical of the Swedish School, with nothing less than the best performances in the genre. A must-have! [I believe this last bit is about the new CD, but you can read our item on titles available via Wayside, where this is also discussed -ed.]