Gentle Knife

SKU: 7041880992903
Label:
Bajkal Records
Category:
Progressive Rock
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Gentle Knife is a new band from Norway that will definitely bring a wide grin to the face of any prog fan.  This is a huge 10 piece ensemble that features both male and female lead vocals, tons of keys (yup - you get your Mellotron right here), reeds, guitar, bass and drums.  Male vocals seem to predominate but even still I'm reminded quite a bit of White Willow's debut Ignis Fatuus - even more so when the female singer comes on board.  There is a dark and mystical quality to the music.  Not surprising - I did say they are Norwegian.  When the instrumental jams kick in there are jazz overtones blending with Crimsonoid evil.  This just arrived at Casa Laser's Edge so it needs more plays to really sink in.  The first few times through the album I'm liking what I'm hearing...a lot!  Highly recommended.

"Gentle Knife is a Norwegian progressive rock band counting 10 members. With both male and female vocals, guitars, synths, mellotron, woodwinds and everything else you would or would not expect, the band combines the mood of the ‘70s with a modern take on the genre. The band has a clear visual identity based in the artworks of Brian Talgo. The band has a long time perspective.

Gentle Knife’s eponymous debut recounts the tale of an ill-fated wanderer lost in the depths of a haunted forest. An 8-part suite rooted in the classic rock concept album. Recorded/premixed
by Øyvind Engebretsen at Sound Lab Studioes, with final mix by Neil Kernon. Mastered by Morten Lund at Lunds Lyd."

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    $5.00
  • Third album from this Danish band is a futuristic concept album based on the book Hyperion by Dan Simmons. Manticora play mega-fast power metal that mixes US and European styles. At times it has the coarsness of Iced Earth and at other times there is a more produced symphonic feel.
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  • For reasons beyond my comprehension this German six piece band is being lumped in with Graveyard and Witchcraft.  Yes this is a retro sounding band and hard rock is one of their primary influences and yes there is an occult theme running through the album.  I hear much more of a 70s hard rock sound.  Think in terms of Uriah Heep, Lucifer's Friend and Deep Purple but also some undercurrents of bands like The Devil's Blood.  There is Iommi-type riffing that turns up so I guess that's the Sabs influence and the connection to those Swedish bands.  I'm digging the swirling organ sounds. "Orcus Chylde are a band with a sound that is very hard to categorize. Parts Doom, Pysch, Prog Rock, Proto-Metal mixed in with a delicious 70's Occult Rock feel.They are part of the new breed of Doom Rock/Metal that is starting to make waves through the rock world. They have just released their astonishing debut S/T Debut album. An 8 song and 48 minute blast of out of this world psychedelic riffs.The album is expertly produced and played by everyone involved.If your a fan of 70's Hard Rock Bands such as Led Zep, Black Sabbath and Deep Purple then your going to love this. It takes the music from that era but adds some cool modern Doom Rock riffs to truly stand out from the crowd.This album feels like a greatest hits collection of this great band rather than their debut album. All of the songs  are great especially - The Day The Seventh Angel Came, Valley Of Thorns, Over The Frozen Rivers.All showing what this great band does so well. Paying homage to great bands past and present but putting their own spin on things. Such as the sublime vocals of vocalist Tobias and the Organs. The organs add a dream like quality to their music. Some times unsettling but altogether original and fucking superb.This album is receiving a whole lot of praise all over the place. And rightly it should. As it's Orcus Chylde's callling card to the world of Hard Rock/Doom Metal that a truly important band has arrived on the scene. And that they are here to stay for a long, long time.Long May It Continue. An outstanding album by a great band from our German Brothers.If you want a truly operatic theatrical doom rock/metal album full of original ideas and riffs then I recommend you check this excellent band now. You would be mad to miss out this excellent album." - The Sludgelord Blog
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  • New digipak edition from SPV of the original double album, originally released in 1971. ADII was hit or miss but this one was mostly hit.
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  • "‘Idiosynchratically beautiful’. These are two words that have stuck with me for nearly 20 years and which I recall almost every time I hear or read the name Arcturus. These words were quoted on an advert for the Norwegian band’s 1997 release, ‘La Masquerade Infernale’ within an issue of either Terrorizer or Metal Hammer magazine; I can’t remember which. What I do remember was that I was deeply into a stage of black metal discovery at the time and this quote resonated with me for some reason. I took the punt and received the album as a Christmas present. It wasn’t love at first listen; instead it was a slow and steady slog that has ended in a lasting and deep love affair. It was the track ‘Ad Astra’ that was the catalyst for repeat listens. Full of drama, avant-garde vaudevillian oddness and a compelling crescendo, it impressed me and forced me to listen to the remainder of the album more than perhaps I might otherwise have done.It is arguable that in the intervening years, Arcturus have never managed to hit the heights of ‘La Masquerade Infernale’. Neither 2002’s ‘The Sham Mirrors’ nor ‘Sideshow Symphonies’ spoke to me in the same way and despite containing some outstanding moments, I came away both times with feelings of slight disappointment. And that, as they say was that. In terms of original studio albums, nothing has been released since; indeed after the release of ‘Shipwrecked in Oslo’ in 2006, the band called it quits with the individual members going on to do different things. And so it has remained until now.Rumours were rife from around 2011 when various members made comments that alluded to a resurrection of the band and later that year the rumours were confirmed. However, for one reason or another it has taken until 2015 for a new original recording to see the light of day, a development that has been greeted with great euphoria amongst the loyal Arcturus following.Arcturus version 2015 is comprised of Steinar Sverd Johnsen (keys), Hellhammer (drums), Knut Magne Valle (guitar), Hugh ‘Skoll’ Mingay (bass) and ICS Vortex (vocals). Together, they have created an album very much worthy of their lofty status and one that I would argue just about manages to match the quality of ‘La Masquerade Infernale’. The only reason I hedge my bets and say ‘just about’ is because I’ve only had about three days with ‘Arcturian’ as opposed to the 18 years I’ve had to enjoy ‘La Masquerade Infernale’. That said, I’ve listened to ‘Arcturian’ more times than I care to mention in recent days and it gives me chills on each and every listen. It is complex, quirky, brilliantly composed and professionally executed. I have no doubt that with even more time and attention, it’ll delight and captivate me even more than it does already.The one thing that perhaps I wasn’t expecting was the sheer amount of melody and accessibility that ‘Arcturian’ displays. It’s no exaggeration to say that for all of the complexity and raw heaviness, almost every track on the album contains a melody, lead vocal or some kind of hook that makes me sit up and take real notice. When I listen to new music, I have a tendency to make an ‘oooh’ noise and smile broadly if something excites me. I suspect that there will be some of you out there who do something similar. On ‘Arcturian’, I admit to ‘ooh’-ing all over the place.One of main reasons why this album feels so melodic and accessible is, I believe down to vocalist ICS Vortex. Yes he is an acquired taste but so unique is his delivery and so impressive is his range that seemingly very little is off-limits. 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  • "Steve Thorne returns with his fourth album, playing the majority of the instruments bar Nick D’Virgilio (Cirque Du Soleil/ex-Spock’s Beard) and Bob White on drums with Tony Levin and Gary Chandler (Jadis) also guesting. Also former IQ member Martin Orford pops out of musical retirement to play flute on two songs.What I like about Steve Thorne is his strong and topical lyrics, coupled with melodies that transcend the prog rock genre he is often lumped in. A bit like It Bites, Steve Thorne’s music can take in many musical influences to create an entertaining and enjoyable listen.‘Already Dead’ looks at modern culture and how modern technology can turn us into a nation of zombies. Good way to start the album with the heaviest and most aggressive song on the album. ‘Everything Under The Sun’ is a lovely piece of music, albeit rather sad as an older person looks back on their life and realises how alone they are now. The melodic vocal and subdued music add greatly to the song. ‘Distant Thunder’ is the nearest to classic Brit prog rock on the album, whilst Martin Orford’s flute expands the sound of ‘Moth To A Flame’ nicely. ‘Bullets & Babies’ again sees the heavier side of Steve Thorne’s work come to the fore tackling the subject of boy soldiers and how war affects people from an early age.An artist where you can start with any of his albums to date and not be disappointed. As mentioned previously Steve Thorne can appeal to the prog rock fans but also a wider audience who appreciate melodic rock with thought provoking lyrics." - Get Ready To Rock
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  • There is no denying that Nemo's JP Louveton is one hell of a guitarist. His staunch commitment to having French lyrics with Nemo's music has stiffled the band's exposure within much of the progressive rock community. Wolfspring is a new project he has put together - but with English vocals. The music isn't particularly symphonic like Nemo. Instead he goes for a contemporary guitar driven sound that rocks hard. Nemo keyboardist Guillaume Fontaine is also a member of the band but he definitely takes a supporting role. Louveton's guitar takes center spotlight through out.
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  • The Japanese jazz scene is finally getting the attention it deserves.  Long written off as just a scene filled with copycats of American and European artists, jazz fans around the world are now discovering that there was some amazing music being created there.  Some of the musicians like Terumasa Hino and Masabumi Kikuchi crossed over into the world jazz scene but for the most part many of the musicians there only gained popularity in Japan.  One of the most important Japanese jazz labels from the 70s was Three Blind Mice.  It was started in 1970 by producer Takeshi "Tee" Fuji.  The label adhered to strict audiophile standards and all of the releases on the label featured exemplary sonics.  The music of Three Blind Mice tended to fall into three facets of jazz (they would crossover from time to time).  Some of the artists play very traditional straight ahead jazz.  Frankly while this stuff appeals to audiophiles its not that appealing beyond the sonics.  There was also an experimental side to the label featuring a lot of free jazz blowing.  The third aspect, which to my ears is the most interesting, is the area where the label explored modal jazz, often with an electric element.  Very little of it would be hardly be called fusion, but a rock element would sometimes be present.  This falls into the realm that has been broadly tagged as "kosmigroov".The label only existed in the 70s and the rights to the catalog has now passed over to Sony Music.  Think Records in Japan has started a limited ediiton reissue campaign of the Three Blind Mice label.  They arrive in mini-LP sleeves and are manufactured using Sony's proprietary Blu-Spec process.  We are cherry picking titles we think should have your attention.  More will follow in the near future.By the mid-70s Three Blind Mice was loosening up just a little bit in terms of the label's scope.  Ako's Dream is an interesting set that was released in 1977.  Suzuki is a bassist and cellist - on this album he is playing cello.  The lineup features two guitarists - one of which is the incredible Kazumi Watanabe.  Lots of electric piano and (gas) even some synthesizer.  The album consists of four long tracks that really hit a groove particularly on a reworking of Gene McDaniel's "Feel Like Makin' Love" which almost has a funky vibe to it with synth washes that take it into a spacey direction.  Its always fun to hear Watanabe on these jazz sessions, lurking in background and then coming to the fore and tearing it up.  Highly recommended.
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