Ion Vein

SKU: MVD6298A
Label:
Mortal Music
Category:
Power Metal
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Chicago prog-metal stalwarts Ion Vein are back but with a new game plan.  The music is now very much in the power metal vein and even has a groove to it.  New vocalist Scott Featherstone is a definite step in the right direction.

"ION VEIN's self-titled new album shows the band re-tooled, re-focused and re-energized in a way that captures the essence of their song-oriented and technically-skilled metal intensity. Also, a top notch production drives these pounding, meaty canvases to cut into the very core of your soul, while breathing new life into today's world of music. For fans of Metallica, Dio, Iced Earth and more!"

"The long awaited follow up to 2003's "Reigning Memories" was once again produced, recorded, and mixed by Neil Kernon (Judas Priest, Nevermore, Redemption) and is the first full length album with vocalist, Scott Featherstone, whom the band first debuted on the IV v1.0 and IV v2.0 three song digital EPs released in September 2011 and December 2012 respectively. Additionally, the six songs from those EPs have been re-mixed/re-mastered for inclusion on the full album."

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  • "“Memories Of An Ancient Time”represents the second chapter of the trilogy start with "Countdown to Revenge" two years ago. HOLLOW HAZE has recently parted ways with singer Fabio Lione ( RHAPSODY, ANGRA, KAMELOT), But luckily the Italians, in person but shortly after it announced that Mats Leven (Y. MALMSTEEN, THERION, CANDLEMASS), Rick Altzi (MASTERPLAN, At VANCE) and Amanda Somerville took part in the recording sessions as very special guest singers. Their new and sixth album, that is set to be released on upcoming June’15 by Scarlet Records.This second saga will take you on an epic journey through the desert of Egypt, meeting the aliens, special mention to the amazing artwork realised by Stan W. Decker. This “Memories Of An Ancient Time” has been mastered by Mika Jussila (NIGHTWISH, APOCALYPTICA, CHILDREN OF BODOM) at Finnvox Studios in Helsinki, Finland, and as usually, Mika has done a good job, the production is magestic.“Memories Of An Ancient Time” is a mix of progressive meets power meets symphonic meets heavy metal, fast guitar riffs, neat double bass, magical and orchestral arrangements, big and beautiful choirs in the chorus, you can easily sing along all the songs, especially due to that the songs are relatively short compared to the first album of this trilogy.All the duets between Mats Leven & Amanda Somerville are all well done, Rick is mostly heard in the background, all the lead vocals are on the Mats‘s shoulders. As usual, Mats Leven has often proven, in the past, that he can carry an complete album. Whether by Y. MALMSTEEN or with THERION (even if i prefer his vocal performance with the guitar hero), he always convinced me with his charismatic voice, and he does this time again. HOLLOW HAZE has done the best choice with Mats for sure. Note the female choirs by Amanda & Claudia are just so sweet and touch your heart with their tender melodies. Everything else is fine, there is plenty of tunes (especially in the choruses), as know so well the Italian bands in this style.Its a bombastic album, but you need to hear the first part of the saga to understand, where the band wants to take you,  so you need also to buy the CD with the booklet included to jump into the lyrics and not download MP3! To finish his review, if you’re a fan of this style of metal, you still take pleasure to listen to this “Memories Of An Ancient Time” in a few years.This is already a classic! An emotional masterpiece!" - Metal Temple
    $15.00
  • "This is all I have to write and it would be a good review but I have to play the unbiased party. Christian Muenzner, he’s one of the guitarists for OBSCURA and previously worked in NECROPHAGIST having the album, “Epitaph“, under his belt and also has his solo project going for him and several other projects. Not only did he deliver the masterpiece, “Omnivium” in 2011 but also within a month’s time after this magnum opus his solo project’s debut “Timewarp” was released. In 2012 we see the release of SPAWN OF POSSESSION’s “Incurso” and now we have PARADOX’s “Tales Of The Weird”. I really hope he keeps up this stride and as far as the material here goes there’s nothing to worry about him slowing down anytime soon.The title track, “Tales Of The Weird” begins with a stormy night, rain pouring and etching the earth with acoustics pushing the music forward. A wolf howls into the eternal night, calmly but rushingly surging that energy through your spine. The acoustics control your movements, confined into the black night turning towards the eminent dawn. Once the rest of the instruments start to engage you are hypnotized, senselessly trying to bring you back from that beautiful shock you didn’t know you were in. When it comes to the multitude of solos the first one sounds like time shifted into the Egyptian realm trying to resurrect a pharaoh from his decrepit sarcophagus. Well done Muenzner and not only him but the rest of the crew. This is easily one of the best songs on the album.I don’t know what equipment Muenzner used on the album but he sure has a different unique tone. It’s apparent on “Brutalized”. On the first solo you get this new tone and it’s just warming and comfortable to hear. A melodic solo and when it reaches a higher pitch it’s what I’d like to compare as a bee humming a song during the brightest summer. I didn’t hear it upon my first voyage through this album. In fact it took me three times to really notice it. On the second solo it’s like “Screw it! I’m Christian Muenzner and I want to play a full on progressive/technical death metal solo.” It’s called “Brutalized” for a reason and no I don’t think he’s conceited as I make him to be so just follow along and don’t pay too much mind to it. The outro is folk influenced as was “Tales Of The Weird” after the howling of the wolf. Spellbinding and it leads you into the mood of the next song. It’s like reading an ancient book and following along with the unorthodox adventures.I could be wrong but “Fragile Alliance” seemed to be slightly influenced by CHILDREN OF BODOM. Listen to “Cry of the Nihilist”, the riff starting at (1:40). Let that song sink in and come back to this one. It’s about less than a second but it has the same vibe, at least to me. It repeats itself three times on different points of the song. On certain passages Charly Steinhauer sounded like James Hetfield back when his voice had a more melodic and innocent quality to it. Also there’s clapping towards the end or maybe it’s something else but I agree that this album deserves an applause. “Escalation” starts off real thrashy also the riffs prior to the solo have a classical-esque composition quality to them and as a classical music fan I really enjoy combos of the sort. Muhammed Suicmez is quite guilty of this as well, check out the song, “Intestinal Incubation” full of that great majesty of the 18th century. “Slashdead” gets the award for strangest song off the album but hey this is “Tales Of The Weird” so it fits nicely. It’s a straightforward thrash song but it articulates a bit on tangents. Towards the ending it brings back good memories of Pokemon when it says “Slash!”, Sandslash anyone?“Zeitgeist”is personally my favorite song off the album. I actually know the word since it was discussed in my psychology class. If the translation is correct it means “spirit of the times.” It’s the perfect track in describing the obscurity and gentleness of the album. First “Tales Of The Weird” with its trip back to the times of pharaohs and during a period where the sun was deemed as a god and among several other deities. Then “Escalation” with its classical fluidity and now “Zeitgeist”. This song’s where my inception of the idea of the humming bees came from, “Brutalized” further supports the point. The concept of spirit of the times fits great with my perception of the bees which leads to that birds and the bees speech to explain reproduction. It is the beginning of life and exploration. It creates people and with people it creates these atmospheres during a certain period in time, thus spirit of the times or “Zeitgeist”. On “The Downward Spiral” it seemed to be influenced by DEATH’s “The Flesh and the Power It Holds” (around 3:03) on two different points during “The Downward Spiral“. The bass created the illusion that I was going in a spiral. A chaotic stream of an evolving abstract staircase that disappeared within a few moments if one isn’t quick enough to get on the ride.Overall, this is a very impressive album and trust me when I say the more you listen to it the better it gets. There’s a chance you won’t think much of it the first time around as you might be hypnotized by Muenzner’s guitar work that initially the rest seems inferior to it. Alas don’t fear, digest the album well, its replay value is really high. V. Santura did an amazing job on mixing and mastering, definitely giving PARADOX an evolutionary album. Bass had a tendency to be technical in sneaky places but Olly Keller had his own style. The synergy between the bass and guitars reminded me so much of OBSCURA. Only problem I seemed to have is the drums were at times oblivious in the mix. I actually heard the bass more than the drums. I’m sure though with a few more runs with this album I’ll be able to hear it more and better comprehend Daniel Buld’s contributions." - Metal Temple
    $15.00
  • "MEGADETH is back and blazing at full force and everything about “The System Has Failed” screams “Classic MEGADETH!” Just to get it out of the way, the year is 2004, not 1986, not 1992, so don’t go there. MEGADETH is 20 years old. Mustaine is still the man and MEGADETH is still the band! Well ok, MEGADETH is still MegaDave, since the whole MEGADETH line-up has been revamped. Marty is doin’ his million mile an hour, Japanese pop-star thing, and Ellefson I guess is working for Peavey and is currently mid-lawsuit with Mustaine for whopping $18.5 million big ones over some merch and publishing royalty issues that came about when Dave decided not to pull the plug on MEGADETH after all, leaving Mustaine as the only returning member, or is he? Technically, he’s not, but we’ll get to that.You know, when Dave got kicked out of METALLICA so many years back, he made a vow, a vow to kick METALLICA’s ass. Needless to say, even though two decades have passed since then, this is the album that should have Lars and the gang shitting teeth! Not that the past albums weren’t enough, it’s just that compared to 2003’s “St. Anger”, this album puts METALLICA out of the race, it’s just that simple. Once you find you’re formula, keep it, master it, make it you’re own. METALLICA screwed with theirs one too many times unfortunately and as a result it crumbled through their fingers.One thing that’s definitely a plus about this album is the “oh so familiar” feeling you get from the artwork. Just you’re regular run-o-the-mill MEGADETH cover that may as well be from the 80’s as opposed to now...oop, I went there. Not to mention the listing of who does which solos in the liner notes, always a nice bonus. And just who exactly would be swapping solos with The Man? None other than Chris Poland, that’s right, this album marks the triumphant return of Chris Poland, the original lead guitarist who hasn’t been seen with MEGADETH since “Peace Sells...” However, that’s not to say he hasn’t been busy. Since then, he has appeared on several albums including three solo albums of his own, as well as a few from his current jazz/fusion group OHM, not to mention a guest appearance on the 2003 Metal opus “As The Palaces Burn” from LAMB OF GOD which shows that he has definitely kept up on his metal chops, which as you will hear on this new album are still second to none.As for Mustaine, well what can be said that hasn’t? The man is, well...The Man. However, Dave suffered a severe arm injury in 2002 that had him convinced he would never play again, so Dave disbanded the group altogether and it seemed as though MEGADETH was through. Supposedly, Dave got drunk and fell asleep on his arm causing severe nerve damage (???). However, with a miraculous recovery and a reworked set of band members, MEGADETH are here to stay.At just under 50 minutes, Mustaine and Poland give you an ample supply of riffery that never drags for even a nanosecond, and with soon to be classics like “Of Mice And Men“, “Blackmail The Universe“ and “Truth Be Told“, this newest offering from one of the greatest Metal bands of all time clearly shows that the days of MEGADETH have yet to be numbered, even by Mustaine himself." - Metal Observer
    $12.00
  • In my mind these guys can do no wrong. Fans bitch and moan about the first two albums because they sound a bit different from one another. I like 'em both and I like this new third one just as much if not more. Everyone knows I'm a freak for keyboards in my metal and Chimera is loaded with them (maybe too much for some people's taste?). Great great hooks and melodies, flowing guitar riffs, and yes David Fremberg is the right voice for the band. This is progressive metal the way I like it. Highest recommendation - a great album.New remastered edition on Inner Wound Recordings.
    $13.00
  • "FORTÉ was founded in Oklahoma City in 1987 by brothers Jeff and Greg Scott and were in time joined by bassist Ghames “Rev” Jones and ex-Oliver Magnum vocalist, James Randel. In the early stages FORTÉ played an abundant of shows quickly establishing themselves within the flourishing underground metal scene by opening for bands like Pantera, Dream Theater, Fates Warning, Watchtower, Overkill, Savatage and Trouble.After spending time on the road hammering out and fine tuning everything they recorded and released their (now) classic Dementia By Design demo tape in 1989. It was both fan and critic favorite and their popularity began to spread worldwide as it went on to sell a stunning 1,500 copies. The demo’s title track was even featured on Metal Blade Records’ Metal Massacre series giving the band even more exposure which they certainly used to their advantage. Not wanting to slow the building momentum they delivered an impressive showcase at the Foundations Forum. Germany’s Massacre Records was in attendance and quickly signed FORTÉ to their first recording contract.Their debut, Stranger Than Fiction, was released in 1992 stunning both critics and their ever expanding fan base with its intensity, speed, power and excellent use of melody. Stranger Than Fiction has been unavailable for years and with the line-up back together and prepping a new album for release in 2011 we decided it was time to re-release this classic slab of melodic/power/thrash metal. Working in conjunction with the band we were able to unearth two original FORTÉ demo tapes for inclusion on this new deluxe edition to make it the most comprehensive collection of their early years."
    $12.00
  • "This is Magnums 9th live album and is a fitting reminder of just how good last year’s studio release ‘Escape from the Shadow Garden’ is. If you missed the supporting tour then this is as faithful a reproduction as you are going to get, my venue on that tour was 53Degrees in Preston, but the less said about that venue the better.The first 6 tracks are taken from Magnum’s last three Studio albums, opening with ‘Live till you die’ a modern classic Magnum song in the making. The opening riff to The Visitation’s ‘Black Skies’ gives the band a edger sound, Bob is sounding as good if not better than ever and what can you say about Tony Clarkin, the man is a genius.‘Freedom Day’ and ‘Dance Of The Black Tattoo’ are defining Magnums new heavier sound and the band aren’t afraid to play them live with both five string bass player Al Barrow and drummer Harry James delivery a power house of a rhythm section. Pianist Mark Stanway’s playing is as fluid and complementary as ever especially on ‘Freedom Day’ the interplay between Tony and Mark is just sublime, a joy to watch and a pleasure to listen to.‘Blood Red Laughter’ is another strong track and deserves a place at the live table as well as the slow burning ‘Unwritten sacrifice’.The second half of the set see’s Magnum delivery the classics, but there are so many of them it must be hard to choose the set list.We get the mighty ‘How far Jerusalem’ the astonishingly moving ‘Les morts dasant’, the unexpected ‘Falling from the big plan’ as it’s taken from the Escape album, then it’s back to the classic’s with the anthemic ‘All England’s eyes’ and the uber catchy “Vigilante”.‘Kingdom of madness’, off course, rounds the set and the night off. My only critisim is that the running time and the gig is a little on the short side, another couple of tracks, both favourites of mine ‘Don’t wake the lion’ which hasnt been played live since 2010, or ‘Midnight’ has’nt been played since 2008, or countless other songs would have made a wonderful gig and disc. Still, can’t wait for the next tour.I have seen Magnum live many many times over the years and they never fail to impress, and this live release is no different, it is worthy of a place in your record collection." - PlanetMosh.com
    $18.00
  • Sometimes there are great albums that just float underneath everyone's radar.  Poor distribution, small label - or simply a band is just too far ahead of the curve for collector's to catch up.   Sooner or later they do.  That's just the nature of collecting music.  Such is the case of Sway.  Many years ago I stumbled across a copy of this obscure Italian album from 1973 and could not find any mention of it beyond one advanced collector mentioning "Oh yeah that's rare".  At the time there was little interest from the rock community in modal jazz, souljazz, space jazz, kosmigroov - whatever you want to call it.  Jazz collectors may well have been aware of the album but perhaps because the lineup consisted of relatively unknown (outside of Italy) musicians, no one really paid much attention to the album.  I did my fair share of turning friends and collectors on to the album.  Maybe it made a difference.  All I know is that finding a copy of the album now is next to impossible.So what the hell am I exactly talking about?  Sway is a quintet led by noted jazz pianist Sante Palumbo (he's still going today!).  The rest of the lineup consists of journeymen session players: Hugo Heredia (alto/tenor sax, flute), Sergio Farina (guitar), Marco Ratti (acoustic/electric bass), and Lino Liguori (drums/percussion).  If you are a fan of electric Miles Davis or Weather Report you must hear this album.Palumbo is the focal point of the band - his runs on acoustic and electric piano are breathtaking.  This guy can tear of the keys.  The music has that definite kosmigroov sound.  Electric piano plays off of wah-wah laced guitar, some nice skronking sax (and at times gorgeous, liquid flute) and a rock solid rhythmic foundation.  There are some parts to the album which have a slightly freer vibe but for the most part is quite accessible.  If you listen carefully you might hear strains of a sound that bears a kinship to Canterbury. New authorized reissue from Schema Records.  BUY OR DIE!
    $29.00
  • "See here, they have managed to get a deal. MOURNING CARESS, Germany's finest Melodic Deathers! A Spanish label, Arise Records, won the competition, not a bad thing, because they have a good distribution, so Arise-releases are available everywhere.What has changed compared to the mini "Perspectives"? Basically nothing, apart from the even better sound and longer playing time. The highlights of the mini, "A Lifeless Time" and "Hope Dies At Last", can be found here, too, sounding fatter, but apart from that untouched, which is good! What makes MOURNING CARESS differ from the rest of the countless Melodic Death-acts? Not that they play a totally new variant of this style, they just write good songs and have a feeling for gripping melodies without losing control over the song. I even can detect a certain Rock'n'Roll-touch. The super-fat production by Andy Classen (mastered in Finnish Finnvox) crowns the whole thing. Doesn't sound too spectacular, it isn't anyway. The songs often are further enhanced by some acoustic interludes. Mid-paced numbers are in the majority, but the folks also have a few faster tracks in the repertoire. Good Melodic Death doesn't need to come from Sweden. Unfortunately we have a real flood of musically comparable products."Imbalance" for sure is among the better releases. Also remarkable is the quite original voice of singer Gerrit, with a slight Hardcore-touch, which is very characteristic. So, if you see this, arrest it! " - Metal Observer
    $2.00
  • "Forget the NWOBHM band name, CD title and cover art: Invisigoth's Alcoholocaust is not New Wave of British Heavy Metal. In fact, it's the antithesis of that. And it's actually quite terrifying, in a laid-back, arty sort of way. Think Porcupine Tree or Blackfield providing the soundtrack to slow torture. Yet, this is an engaging and imminently listenable spin. Consisting entirely of two members — Cage on all instruments and Viggo Domino on all vocals — Invisigoth sets out to make a primal musical statement with foundations in esoteric philosophy, hedonism and psychedelics. Domino takes his voice in so many multiple and moody directions that he often sounds like more than one vocalist, and Cage deserves a drink for his ability to make music epic, dense and sparse (and then somehow piece it all together effectively). The duo throws in a Led Zeppelin cover at the end, for some reason. Ultimately, this is one for goths, proggers and rockers that will leave them with a sense of uncomfortable satisfaction." - Sea Of Tranquility
    $3.00
  • Emerging from the post-Beat era band I Quelli, Premiata Forneria Marconi (or PFM) is one of the most important progressive rock bands of all time. Storia Di Minuto is the album that kicked it off. The interplay between violinist/flautist Mauro Pagani and guitarist Franco Mussida is breathtaking. Keyboardist Flavio Premoli is perhaps one of the most overlooked virtuosos of the progressive rock era - every much the equal of Emerson and Wakeman.
    $11.00
  • "Panic Room had something of a troubled 2013. Several years hard work paid off with a growing reputation and audience for their powerful and sophisticated mix of rock, folk, jazz and metal. Then their year began with the departure of the lead guitarist, founder member Paul Davies. While Morpheus Rising’s Pete Harwood did a sterling job standing in on their already-booked tour, his commitments to his own band ruled out any longer-term involvement. So they initially announced that they’d be writing their fourth album as a four-piece. Then around the time the band were ready to enter the studio they announced the recruitment of Adam O’Sullivan, bringing the band back up to full strength.In a rock band the lead guitarist can often be as important as the singer, so how would the new-look Panic Room sound?Hard rocking opener “Velocity” with its spiralling guitar riff is close to the feel of their last album, but with the next few numbers a rather different sound emerges. It’s a step away from the rich wall of sound that characterised the last couple of Panic Room albums, with a lighter, more pared-back feel that has as much in common with Panic Room’s acoustic side-project Luna Rossa than it does with 2012′s “Skin”. In places there are echoes of the début “Visionary Position” and the singer-songwriter feel of Anne-Marie Helder’s 2006 solo record “The Contact”, and it’s notable that Anne-Marie has sole songwriting credit for half of the ten songs.There are plenty of moments where the space in the mix gives individual members the chance to shine. There’s some inventive drumming from Gavin Griffiths, and some great understated Fender Rhodes from Jon Edwards across much of the album. Adam O’Sullivan’s guitar isn’t always prominent, though he does have his spotlight moments. Much of his playing has a strong jazz flavour, with some great bluesy rippling flourishes. A good example is on “Nothing New” where his guitar work duels with some equally jazzy piano runs from Jon Edwards. The one moment towards the end of the album where he cuts loose with a rock-style solo, it’s superb. Yet again Anne-Marie’s vocals are everything you’d expect from someone voted Best Female Singer by readers of Prog magazine, hitting the sweet spot between melody and expressiveness.Much of the strongest material comes in the second half of the album. The atmospheric “Into Temptation” with its eastern-sounding vibe is reminiscent of parts of “Endgame” from the band’s début. The following three numbers “All The We Are”, “Searching”, and the soaring “Close The Door” all demonstrate Anne-Marie’s talents as a singer-songwriter.The album closes with the dark and brooding “Dust”, an ambitiously progressive piece sounding like Massive Attack crossed with late-period Led Zeppelin, building on a repeated motif keeps going round and round in your head even after the album has finished playing.At this stage in their career, Panic Room could easily have attempted a retread of the well-regarded “Skin”. But that would have been a mistake, and they should be applauded for not simply repeating a successful formula. It’s not quite perfect; the album might have benefited from one or two out-and-out rockers in the vein of Skin’s “Hiding the World” or Satellite’s “Dark Star” to add variety and raise the energy level. But it does feel like the beginning of a new chapter for the band. This is album by a band not afraid to try something slightly different, and there is much to like about it, especially after repeated listens. It’s still unmistakably Panic Room, but with their sophisticated sound it’s a record with a wider crossover potential too." - Where Worlds Collide
    $18.00
  • "On first listen, you could be forgiven for thinking that Helker are German: in fact, they hail from that renowned hotbed of heavy metal Argentina, with ‘Somewhere In The Circle’ being their fourth album but the first to be both recorded in English and gain an international release, thanks to a deal inked last year with AFM Records.However, the assumption that the five piece’s geographic origins lie in Germany, or even Italy, is a fair one to make, due to a number of factors – not least their collaboration with one Mat Sinner, who not only produced the album but also co-wrote all of the 11 tracks. Then, there’s the material itself, which evokes classic Helloween, especially, as well as the likes of Hammerfall, Primal Fear (vocalist Ralf Scheepers makes a guest appearance, along heavy metal mercenary Tim ‘Ripper’ Owens, on ‘Begging For Forgiveness’) and just about every other classic European power metal outfit.All the right elements are included – soaring guitar solos and harmonies, huge, catchy choruses and majestic vocals. Actually, let’s concentrate on the latter for a moment: Diego Valdez does have a powerful, impressive voice, with a delivery and style that is very reminiscent of the late Ronnie James Dio (perhaps a bit too closely imitative on the likes of ‘Modern Roman Circus’, ‘No Chance To Be Reborn’ and ‘Dreams’), Michael Kiske (check ‘Wake Up’ or ‘Ghosts From The Past’) and even Klaus Meine (as on ‘Flying’).Elsewhere, the musical performances are all powerful and impressive, delivering a collection of songs that don’t stray too far from the traditional power metal formulae but nevertheless do so in an efficient and tidy manner." - Planet Mosh
    $15.00
  • "I suppose naming your band Standing Ovation could be considered more than a little pretentious. What if you played your music and nobody gave you one? I don't think this Finnish band will have that problem. Their first full length album, The Antikythera Mechanism is a fine collection of progressive metal.Yet, their progressive metal doesn't necessarily fit into the traditional mold. Sure they owe a debt to peers like Dream Theater or Symphony X, but there's a more reckless modern feel to their sound. Also, the music is both equally dense and technical. For example, on I Have Superhuman Powers, a clever tune, every player weaves their part with assertive intensity and skill, sounding nearly in bitter competition with each other, but only complimenting each other. And you get much more of this throughout The Antikythera Mechanism.Conversely, With a song like Break the News the intensity and complexity takes a back seat to what can only be described as simply heavier melodic rock. Then there's humorous Hey Ho! which sounds like a pop rock song tricked out with heavy power progressive metal. It's curious and compelling, speedy and intense, and crazy catchy. For more conventional progressive metal the three part The Antikythera Mechanism may be the best example, mostly in first and third parts. Part 2 can offer some of that aforementioned rushing dense intensity, notably in the second half of the song.Standing Ovation's style of progressive metal on The Antikythera Mechanism is compelling and challenging and, therefore, mostly entertaining. Exactly the things a prog metal fan wants. Recommended."
    $15.00
  • Brief Nocturnes is the band's 11th album.  It marks their return to Inside Out and quite frankly its the best album they have released in a very long time.  Chalk it up to Ted Leonard handling vocals or Neal Morse contributing writing to a couple of tunes?  Not sure.  I am definitely hearing more vitality and overt progginess in the compositions.  Ryo is going off his nut here - keys are whizzing all around - organ/'tron/the whole schmear - and Alan's guitar runs are matching him step for step.  Maybe I haven't been paying attention as closely as I should have for the past few years.  I do know that I'm enjoying the hell out of this.  Highly recommended.Mediabook edition is essentially a fancier hardbound version fo the domestic release.  No additional music.
    $9.00