ProgAID - 'All Around The World'

Year of Release: 2005
Label: F2 Music
Catalog Number: 200503S
Format: CD
Total Time: 32:19:00

Produced to aid the survivors of the Tsunami disaster, Progaid is an incredible coming together of progressive musical talent from all over the world.

I was lucky enough to be present at the recording session for the song and can tell you what a pleasure it is to finally have the completed product in my hand - it's a fine achievement and has produced something quite unique indeed.

The song "All Around The World" was originally recorded by Cyan, one of producer and Magenta keyboard player Rob Reed's previous bands. Original vocalist Nigel Voyle also makes an appearance on this version. It was decided when putting this project together that this would be a suitable song for such a venture, with some slight alterations to the lyrics to make it more relevant to the cause.

One thing that struck me at the recording sessions was the sheer amount of material being submitted - occasionally people would just turn up at the studio unannounced with instrument in hand and ask if they could contribute. And I wondered how they were going to fit all of this on to one song - it seemed only fair to be able to include all of the contributions if people had been so willing to participate.

So the sensible decision was taken to produce one main version of the song for the single, and a number of different edits, which would incorporate all of the other contributions so that we could experience the vast array of talent on display.

And it works beautifully. The approach was similar to the original Live Aid single, with different vocalists taking turns to sing the lines. Of course this being a progressive musicians collective there is some emphasis on the instrumentation, too, but this has been kept to a minimum on the main single version because obviously the song has to have as broad an appeal as possible in order to sell, and that after all is what this whole venture is about. The song itself is very melodic and appealing, and has a great catchy chorus that I find myself singing over and over. It would not sound out of place on the radio and if there is any justice it will get the airplay it deserves.

Progressive fans will rejoice in the 12 minute "Definitive Mix," because this is the epic, full version - lots of guitars, keyboards, violins, harps and various other instrumentation combining with heartfelt vocals - wonderful. The instrumental outro section has a piano part that reminds me of the climax to Supertramp's Crime Of The Century - incidentally one of my all time favourite albums so you can take that as a compliment.

2 other mixes showcases various other musicians, and it's interesting to hear the different vocalist's interpretations of the lines. The instrumental mix is also a nice bonus.

And the icing on the cake is a 3-minute QuickTime video of various snippets of footage of the recording sessions accompanied by the main single. It really does give a good impression of what went into the recording, and also manages to convey the upbeat, often humorous atmosphere of the weekend.

You will notice that with one exception I have not mentioned any of the artists taking part. For the simple reason that I don't think it's fair to single anyone's particular contribution out for praise on a project like this, everyone gave their time and their talent selflessly. Progaid is a project that consists of many individuals coming together for a very worthy cause, and we should not forget that.

Besides - part of the fun is recognising who's who, and those who wish to know names can obtain that information from the website below, where they can also order the single. or

[Of course, ye ol' editor included a list anyway? it was part of Joshua's review. Total time listed above does not include documentary -ed.]

All Around The World: Single Mix (5:25) / Definitive Mix (11:58) / Air Mix (5:17) / Cue Mix (5:02) / Instrumental (5:17) / The Making Of... Documentary

Neal Morse
Anthony Phillips
Pete Trewavas (Marillion/Kino)
Roine Stolt (The Flower Kings)
Arjen Lucassen (Ayreon)
Peter Nicholls (IQ)
Alan Reed (Pallas)
Nick Barrett (Pendragon)
John Jowitt (IQ)
Clive Nolan (Arena/Pendragon)
Gary Chandler (Jadis)
Oliver Wakeman
Troy Donockley (Iona)
Martin Orford (IQ)
Steve Balsamo (Alan Parsons Project)
Heather Findley (Mostly Autumn)
Bryan Josh (Mostly Autumn)
John Mitchell (Arena/The Urbane/Kino)
Steve Babb (Glass Hammer)
Mike Baker (Shadow Gallery)
Gary Wehrkamp (Shadow Gallery)
Bruce Soord (Pineapple Thief)
Stu Nicholson (Galahad)
Steve Taylor (Strangefish)
Nigel Voyle (Cyan)
Andy Edwards (Ezra)
Rachel Jones (ex-Karnataka)
Dave Wagstaff (Landmarq/Oliver Wakeman)
Tracy Hitchings (Landmarq)
Steve Gee (Landmarq)
Doogie White (ex-Rainbow/Ynqwie Malmsteen)
Chris Dale (Sack Trick/Bruce Dickinson)
Rob Gould (Fula)
Johnathan Edwards (ex-Karnataka/Panic Room)
Paul Davies (ex-Karnataka/Panic Room)
John Morley
Robert Cottingham


Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin VA

Added: April 5th 2005
Reviewer: John Morley

Artist website:
Hits: 688
Language: english


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