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SKU: 82876858942
Label:
Columbia
Category:
Hard Rock
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Remastered edition with two bonus tracks.

"Journey's ninth new studio album found the group reduced to a trio of guitarist Neal Schon, singer Steve Perry, and keyboard player Jonathan Cain. But even without their regular rhythm section, the group was able to re-create the accessible pop/rock sound perfected on earlier albums such as Escape and Frontiers. Schon's guitar still cut through the fat keyboard chords, and Perry's fluid tenor still gave the songs an airy, melodic appeal. All of that was good for sales of two million copies and five chart singles, four of which made the Top 40 and one of which, "Be Good to Yourself," reached the Top Ten. That didn't match the seven-million-selling number one Escape, but it confirmed that Journey's music had a large audience right to the (temporary) end of its career." - All Music Guide

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  • "Vital Science bears all the hallmarks of your atypical Scandinavian progressive metal outfit. You know, the likes of Circus Maximus, Illusion Suite, and Oceans Of Time (to name but a few). What I’ve found odd, though, is that despite peddling a sound which on the surface is commonplace these days; Vital Science manages to bring something strangely fresh to the table. This is something I feel I’ve pegged down, although it could well be a plant by Vital Science’s aural tentacles, which by now have plunged deep and scrambled my brains.There are a fair few elements that Vital Science offers which will be familiar to anyone with slight knowledge of the genre. A foundation of Dream Theater, a generous lavishing of Symphony X; essentially the Circus Maximus formula, although try adding a sprinkling from the more aggressive rack. Yeah, let’s take a pinch of Control Denied, a few drops from Future’s End; and don’t forget a spot of Nevermore. It’s in the deft inclusion of the heavier end of the progressive metal spectrum where Vital Science begins to find itself crawling out from beneath the “average” atypical sound, and from the realms of melodic prog; strangely enough, I feel that the album flows in that sense.The first couple of tracks are without doubt friendly in their utilization: Alexey Boykov’s smooth, Russell Allen-meets-Mark Basile vocal styling is enticing, and when painted over a symphonic backdrop eases you into Imaginations On The Subject Of Infinity. As such, the first song proper, “Bridge Of Sorrow”, flows by as a solid piece, one well-written although lacking in fire. It houses that comforting familiarity – much like you’d feel kicking back in your living room. The following number delivers more in the way of the heavy, as well as that of technicality and, well, prog. It’s that chill running up your spine, or a growth beginning to fester. It’s at this point that Vital Science begins to kick up the excitement.Riffs that, dare I say, come across as unconventional given the progressive power style, begin to rear their heads. Like spiders or other unwelcome guests seeking to compromise the comfort in the aforementioned living room, clamoring through the cracks in a wall, or the gap under a door. It’s here that Vital Science shows that its really pretty damn bad-ass. These are riffs and rhythms that you’re going to want to headbang to; boasting infectious groove, and even some of the more “evil” sounding chord progressions and scales I’ve heard lately. Mixing in the darker, heavier textures with the more pristine, melodic prog conventions makes for an involving listen. In fact, speaking of darker and heavier texture, at times Vital Science spring the likes of Adagio and To-Mera to mind; especially so when considering technicality.As the album continues to progress, so does the band. With each track it feel that Vital Science opens up a little more, stretching the boundaries of their sound a little wider. To the point where some of the music recalls that of (modern) technical death metal, although (and this is something that I can’t stress enough) this resemblance comes in terms of musical prowess and note progression, as opposed to production or tonality. The last half of the album is seriously cool nonetheless, and seeks to catapult Vital Science from the realm of “good band” to that of a great one.In a way, I guess Vital Science amalgamate a considerable amount of what I’ve enjoyed from progressive metal on the whole over the last decade or two. I could write a scary long list of bands that Vital Science springs to mind at any one point throughout the album – and trust me it would extend far – but I feel Imaginations On The Subject Of Infinity deserves more than that. Instead, let’s just say that the band manages to evoke varying shades of atmosphere, and proudly covets an arsenal of sharp hooks, deft songwriting tricks, heavy hitting riffs, and enough in the way flamboyant technicality to ruin many a mind." - Blackwind Metal
    $15.00
  • "Germany's Mystic Prophecy certainly doesn't make fans wait an excessive amount of time for new material. 2011's Ravenlord is the band's seventh album in the just over 11 years since their formation. This is my first time hearing Mystic Prophecy's brand of Germanic Power/Heavy Metal and judging by this album, I've been missing out. Ravenlord is brimming with powerful riffs and heavier-than-Hell rhythm work, courtesy of bassist Connie "Connor" Andreszka and drummer Claudio Sisto. While there are some speedy tracks on Ravenlord ("Die Now," "Damned Tonight"), Mystic Prophecy show that Power Metal can indeed kick ass without copious amounts of double kicks. Slow, brooding songs like "Ravenlord," "Wings of Destiny" and the killer "Eyes of the Devil" leave you feeling like you've been introduced to the business end of a steamroller. Singer Robert Liapakis has an excellent, gravelly voice and does very little screaming on Ravenlord, opting instead for some harsher vocals that add variety to his performance. The album itself contains quite a bit of variety as well, while remaining consistent throughout. Epic-sounding songs, in the vein of Pharaoh, are side by side with Brainstorm-like Power Metal anthems. There are even spots that sound like Dio-era Rainbow in their composition. Ravenlord stacks up as one of the better albums of 2011. All fans of Heavy/Power Metal, especially those that prefer it keyboard-free, should be all over this one." - Metal Crypt
    $14.00
  • Like Uriah Heep?  Deep Purple?  What about Black Bonzo?  Yeah???  Well we've got a band for you.  Tarot are a trio from Australia.  Using the pseudonyms of The Hermit, The Hierophant, and The Magician they whip up some awesome retro-hard rock/proto prog that will make you think you are listening to some recently unearthed archival album from 1972.  Heavy swirls of Hammond organ and analogue synths abound underpinning the old school guitar solos.  Is that a real 'tron?  No clue but it sounds close enough for me!!This CD is actually a compilation that pools together the bands previous cassette releases and adds on 2 new tracks.The spirit of Jon Lord wafts through the aether as you listen to this one.  Its got the vibe through out.  If they would have just added some flute I think they would have sent me over the edge but as is its a non-stop killer that pushes all the right buttons.  BUY OR DIE!"Here's a very intriguing release brought to us by Australian label Heavy Chains Records, the latest from psych/prog/hard rock act Tarot (not to be confused with the veteran Finnish metal band of the same name). The Warrior's Spell contains songs from various 2014 cassette & compilation releases and brings them all together on one CD. Tarot are comprised of The Hermit (guitar, organ, synths, vocals), The Hierophant (bass), and The Magician (drums)...not household names by any means, but their music is just as mysterious as their stage names. "The Watcher's Dream" and "Twilight Fortress" offer swirling, '70s styled prog rock keyboards, effects laden vocals, and heavy rock guitars, and the nightmarish "The Wasp" gives the listener a heavy dose of occult rock mixed with some serious Deep Purple & Uriah Heep influences. You'll hear some vintage Wishbone Ash on the soaring "Eyes in the Sky" as well as the title track, two majestic rockers with plenty of searing lead guitar, Hammond organ, acoustic guitar, and emotional vocals. Other highlights include the heavy "Street Lamps Calling", complete with irresistible harmony guitar work, the gritty blues/prog rocker "Mystic Cavern" (which could have been a leftover from Deep Purple's Machine Head), the evil sounding "Dying Daze", the lumbering psych/doom that is "Life and Death", and the dark yet groove laden "Vagrant Hunter".To be honest, there's not a weak track to be found here on The Warrior's Spell, an album full of surprises and more than a healthy nod to classic sounds of the '70s. Though a name change would probably be recommended to differentiate themselves from Finland's Tarot, either way this is a serious band with some serious talent, and this new release is going to get some major time in my CD player for the foreseeable future. Highly recommended, and a band to keep your eye on." - Sea Of Tranquility 
    $10.00
  • One of the great guitarists around who is adept at both folk or prog rock. Awesome lineup on this one features Simon Phillips and John G. Perry as well as Richard Harvey (Gryphon)."NEWLY REMASTERED & EXPANDED EDITION CD OF THIS CLASSIC 1978 ALBUM BY GORDON GILTRAPREMASTERED FROM THE ORIGINAL MASTER TAPESFEATURING EIGHT BONUS TRACKSBOOKLET WITH FULLY RESTORED ARTWORK & ESSAYESOTERIC RECORDINGS are pleased to announce the release of a newly remastered and expanded edition of the classic album "FEAR OF THE DARK” by GORDON GILTRAP. For over forty years Gordon has enjoyed the well-deserved reputation as one of Britain’s greatest guitar players. He made his first recordings in the 1960s as folk artist, but by 1976 he had crossed into the Progressive Rock genre and signed to the newly formed Electric Records imprint.His third album for Electric was released in 1978. "FEAR OF THE DARK” saw Gordon backed by a band of outstanding musicians such as JOHN G. PERRY (Bass), ROD EDWARDS (keyboards) and SIMON PHILLIPS (drums) and featured many outstanding tracks.This Esoteric Recordings edition is newly remastered from the original tapes and includes eight bonus tracks drawn from a series of singles released between 1978 and 1980, including the live track ‘Inner Dream’ and ‘Party Piece’, ‘Theme from The Waltons’ and ‘Birds of a Feather’ previously unreleased on CD. The reissue also features a lavishly illustrated booklet with new essay and interview with Gordon Giltrap."
    $17.00
  • Limited edition digipak with 2 bonus tracks."The road to Altzi is paved with good intentions…. When Masterplan announced the new lineup in November of last year, Jorn apologists flooded the comment strings of various metal news outlets with comments like “another band is spoiled by a vocalist change” and “no Jorn…no Masterplan.” While I might agree that there was reason for outcry when a well-known/respected singer leaves a band, it’s not as if Masterplan has never had another vocalist and is not a band with more past members than present. The object is to listen and make judgments later. The announcement of Rick Altzi was particularly intriguing and any fan of At Vance and Thunderstone can attest – there was much reason for hope.The news that main man/guitarist Roland Grapow’s (Ex-Helloween) revealed that there was going to be a return to “faster” and “more metal” material made this more appealing. Add further still…the addition of Ex-Stratovarius bassist Jari Kainulainen and the naysayers should have stood back and waited to react. Why? As it turned out, Rick Altzi proves a more than compatible replacement for Jorn…and *GASP* dare I say – a wee bit better in spots? Blasphemy? Try it…prove me wrong.Musically, the album ranks as one of the band’s finest, recalling the best heard from the self-titled debut, 2005’s “Aeronautics,” and the appropriately titled 2010 “Time to Be King,” but with a heavier edge. Altzi is so compatible that only the most attentive Jorn fans can see the difference, most notably that low power that shifts with a slab of grit while on the way up to the high range. This is not besmirching Altzi at all, as his range is proven and perfect. His first appearance is at 0:47 on the album’s second track “The Game,” an admirable driving melodic metal song with noticeably well-crafted double bass from new drummer Marthus Skaroupka (Cradle of Filth) and copious amounts of heaviness intertwined with trademark melody. Grapow proves again what amazing solos he can play.The album’s first music video was for “Keep Your Dream Alive” – a mid-paced winner expertly chosen, as it’s the song where Altzi shines brightest, showing the breadth of his range – and for many moments I said “Jorn who?” The finest track on the album is “Betrayal,” which will prove to be one of the best of the year when all is said and done, if not for its Middle Eastern charm that falls into the heaviest riff on the album drawn out like slamming shudders by Axel Mackenrott’s keyboards. Other notables are the appealing riff in “Earth Going Down” (which is a tad swallowed by the keyboards as the song progresses), the Strato-feel of “Black Night of Magic,” the speedier “Return to Avalon” and the never dull 11 minute title track (especially 6:13 to 7:15) and vocal duet of Altzi and Grapow. Highly recommended is the digipak version with bonus tracks “1492” and “Fear the Silence.”My only complaint is not necessarily with the band’s play or its flawless execution, its more the melodic metal style in general. At the same time it represents a favorite style – in Masterplan’s case best defined as “what Whitesnake would sound like if they tipped a bit into power metal” – listening to entire album presents a challenge, if only for that mid-paced repetition. I find the album plays a bit better when I listen to a few songs at a time, mixing it in with other bands and styles.This may be “a new beginning” for Masterplan in member changes, however the creation of high quality melodic metal perseveres. Grapow assembled a new team of musicians that prove just as compatible, especially Altzi’s performance. With the proof in the product, fans of the band should have little to complain about with “Novum Initium,” though I suspect some Jorn lamenters will never take the road less traveled….the one where its “time for” Rick “to be king.”" - Metal Underground
    $16.00
  • "Finnish composer/producer and guitar player Timo Tolkki presents the follow-up to TIMO TOLKKI'S AVALON's debut album, ANGELS OF THE APOCALYPSE. The CD features lead vocals from Floor Jansen (NIGHTWISH, REVAMP, AFTER FOREVER), Simone Simons (EPICA), Fabio Lione (RHAPSODY OF FIRE, ANGRA), David DeFeis (VIRGIN STEELE), Elize Ryd (AMARANTHE), Caterina Nix and Zachary Stevens (SAVATAGE, CIRCLE II CIRCLE).Other musicians who appear on the album include two other former members of STRATOVARIUS: Tuomo Lassila (STRATOVARIUS' founder) on drums and Antti Ikonen, the original keyboard player of STRATOVARIUS."
    $15.00
  • "In case you’re actually a dog and I don’t know about it, I’m going to begin this endeavor with an explanation of why Leprous is so important. Leprous are a progressive metal band; they are extremely good and their last two albums (Bilateral and Coal) are among this decade’s best prog/avant garde releases. While Bilateral lead us into strange, trumpet-infested Mars Volta territory, Coal took a completely different approach, pairing exceptionally strong melodies with endless drones and subtle drumming that provided counterpoint for Einar Solberg’s unparalleled voice. Coal also bequeathed to the world the best song ever written, “The Cloak.” So The Congregation has some pretty grand expectations around these parts. Thus, contrary to his finite but arbitrarily large wisdom, and as a direct result of his finite but arbitrarily small amounts of spare time, Angry Metal Guy has deigned that I inform you of what you don’t already know, unless you have lived within a few blocks of me in the past few months, which is that The Congregation is pretty damn good.“The Price” introduces a post-Coal Leprous with an even stronger sense of melody but retaining a minimalist core. While Einar’s choruses are impossible not to fruitlessly pantomime, the song retains the measured drama and reductionist sensibilities that made “The Valley” the nine-minute epic that it is. “The Third Law” and “Rewind” retain these traits but are the album’s weakest tracks by far. They’re not boring, but come off as a bit superfluous, especially in an album that’s over an hour long. Luckily, “The Flood” turns things around, preluding a phenomenal mid- and late-album stretch. The song’s extreme repetition of a two-note anti-swing rhythm builds a prog metal lullaby over which measured crooning and burst of exuberant motion play out a complex game of tic-tac-toe.Of course, just like Coal, the centerpiece of The Congregation is its shortest and strongest song. “Within My Fence” gets better and better as it goes along riffing on its syncopated opening bars. Einar’s vocal performance is wincredible here as well, and even more enjoyable because of how perfectly it slides into the synth-heavy, mechanical march of the song. Also of note is Baard Kolstad’s contribution to the album; his drumming, though not quite as distinctive as Tobias ├śrnes Andersen’s on Coal, continues in the less-is-more vein that the last album established and is incredibly tight.After “Within My Fence,” the album cools off, but doesn’t perceptibly decrease in quality. It’s still infectious and emotional and cements Einar Solberg’s place as prog’s best vocalist – a well-deserved but easy win, given that Darroh Sudderth doesn’t seem to be active at the moment. My main issue with The Congregation is, unsurprisingly, its length. “Third Law,” “Rewind,” and “Triumphant” could have easily been cut from the album and it would be much better. The songs aren’t bad, but Leprous has a lot more to show off than these lukewarm affairs.While part of me is disappointed with Leprous‘s lack of editing here, the part of me that has listened to the album dozens of times has more sway over my decisions. The Congregation will give you just the scratch behind the ears you need after disappointing half-year of metal, and while it’s certainly not the equal of its predecessors, it wont tarnish the band’s growing legacy. Go fetch it." - Angry Metal Guy
    $13.00
  • The US "35th Anniversary Edition" is now out of print and truth be told it sounded like crap. This is the UK edition overseen by Kerry Minnear and is light years better. It features better sound, nicer package and a lot of live bonus tracks. One of the greatest prog albums of all time. A cornerstone album for any collection.
    $10.00
  • German power metal masters. New remastered edition features 4 bonus tracks!
    $13.00
  • The progressive elements are in full force and many of the band's signature pieces appear here. Highly recommended.  Remastered edition.
    $5.00
  • "Formed nearly 20 years ago in Madrid by guitarist Enrik Garcia, Dark Moor is not slowing down. The band returns with their ninth long player, Ars Musica. Their trademark symphonic and melodic metal remains at the forefront on this album.Actually, even though there are elements of traditional melodic heavy and power metal, Ars Musica reminds more of symphonic and melodic hard rock record, simply because of the catchy groove and accessible hooks in most every song. Certainly, the opening intro and following First Lance of Spain sounds like sweeping and epic symphonic power metal.But the tide turns with It Is My Way and The Road Again. Both songs charm your ears with the great melody, groove and friendly accessibility. This continues through Together As Ever, The City of Peace, and the beautiful ballad Gara and Jonay. Then the tide turns once more. Living in a Nightmare is clearly symphonic power metal, a swift and rushing composition, as is Saint James Way, though not quite as fast. Dark Moor taps their heritage with El Ultimo Rey and the closing Spanish Suite, the latter an epic instrumental. Once more, besides the excellent melodic rock and metal, the vocals of the talented Alfred Romero leads the way; he's easily one of the best melodic metal vocalist of our day. Dark Moor's Ars Musica is an excellent accomplishment and strongly recommended." - Dangerdog.com
    $15.00
  • "Cradle of Filth is, without question, Britain's most popular, adventurous, funniest, and theatrical alternative metal band (they've actually smiled in photos in full corpse paint). They've been blogged about endlessly, and most recently about not being in the least bit a "black metal band" anymore but merely a good metal band -- they seldom wear corpse paint; they've been interviewed by MTV; a MySpace page (not run by them); and lead singer Dani Filth sometimes goes by his real name Dani Davey now. Whatever. Cradle of Filth are not a good metal band; they are a great one. Over six previous full-lengths they've been able to make seamless the melding of gothic textures, symphonic music, drama and dynamics, bone-shattering death metal, high concept theater, great production, and humor. In short, they may be mainstream these days, but they can still shred the pants off just about any body musically.Thornography follows Nymphetamine on the Roadrunner label and is produced by Rob Cagganio. And the band is intact with guests like the inimitable Sarah Jezebel Deva of Angtoria. While it's true that the new title doesn't match the last one (it was so brilliant, how could it?), the music certainly does. A deep, creepy gothic intro titled "Under Pregnant Skies She Comes Alive Like Miss Leviathan" (written by Chris and Tommy Rehn of Angtoria) that would have improved upon the one in the original Hellraiser film, with big choirs, huge organs and strings, it's almost Wagnerian in scope and sets the tone for those bludgeoning twin guitars and blasted drum work on "Dirge Inferno" (which is anything but). Dani Filth is as entertaining as ever as s singer, sounding somewhere between Cookie Monster with a razor stuck in his throat and Chris D. of the L.A. horror-punk band of yesteryear the Flesh Eaters. But it wouldn't matter if Miss Piggy were fronting this unit, they are so utterly accomplished as a metal band musically. Check "Tonight in Flames" with its references to the great metallic bands of the past for evidence. But Dani serves another purpose because he's so utterly entertaining. "Libertina Grimm" weds Lovecraftian horror filtered through Vincent Price kitsch, wedded to Sade-ian pornography via blistering metal: "God was six days sober/On the night that she was born/To the glistening star of a bible class/An icon now in religious porn." Offended? What did you expect from a band called Cradle of Filth? "Sweet Child O' Mine"?This might be offensive if it could at all be taken seriously. Offense is the point, but so is the fun of classic horror. Better is "The Byronic Man," which follows. It's such an intensely high gothic concept, lamenting Lord Byron's fate and celebrating his many alleged crimes against culture, the church and the aristocracy: "As lonely as a poet on the walls of Jericho/Or the moon without the comfort of the stars/I am loathe to know it that a man without a soul/Is nothing but a spilt canopic jar/I proved it, improved it/Drove a sonnet right through it..." But none of this would matter if this band couldn't write songs, and be so utterly full of the dark side of Halloween and rock the joint to the cracked cement foundation. Who cares what the street thinks about them? Cradle of Filth have been trying to be the evil version of Queen for ten of their 15-year history. Whether its Edwardian decadence, classless humor, power metal in overdriven fury or over-the-top satire disguised as transgression; COF are so very consistent and sophisticated musically and sonically that they are virtually untouchable and in a class of their own -- which is where, make no mistake, they always wanted to be.Other standout tracks on this set include "Cemetery and Sundown," with its woven vocal choruses, deep rumbling bass riffs, and melody line like something off the Damned's Black Album. The unhinged "Foetus of a New Day Kicking" simply kicks ass in the way that Venom did on their debut album with riffs as sledgehammer-like as early Iron Maiden. But nothing quite prepares the listener, whether old loyal fan or newfangled bandwagon jumper, for the cover of Heaven 17's "Temptation" that closes the record and, in addition, is the album's first single and video. Who said Satanic heavy metal bands couldn't crack a joke? Whether this will be the last straw for the COF faithful and/or win them an entirely new legion of fans is anybody's guess, but let's just say by the sound of Thornography, COF are aiming at playing an arena near you sometime in the near future." - Allmusic Guide
    $6.00
  • Hail true metal fan!! Have I got an album for you... Storm Warrior is a new German band who's debut release is produced by Kai Hansen who also makes a guest appearance. Fans of Helloween and Running Wild will have a blast.
    $13.00