Laid To Rest

SKU: GAOM 010
Label:
Gentle Art Of Music
Category:
Progressive Rock
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Fourth album from this interesting German band.  Frequency Drift has really grown by leaps and bounds over the course of their four albums.  The band original characterized themselves as cinematic progressive rock.  I think you can pretty much throw that out the window.  Still plenty of similarities to White Willow but the band has for the most part developed their own sound.  Vocalist Antje Auer sings with plaintive urgency - she has a very pleasant voice.  The real star is violinist Frank Schmitz.  He creates some real fire.  The typical symphonic rock instrumentation is augmented by a battery of medieval instruments as well as clarinet and flute.  On the 15 minute "Cold" the band blisses out in the middle into an Eloy inspired space jam.  A definite grower.  Highly recommended.

Product Review

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Tue, 2012-10-02 18:48
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This is an 'Album Of The Year' candidate folks! The medieval touches and the space for the songs to develop ( the shortest song being a shade less than 8 minutes ), built around top notch progressive rock and outstanding female vocals lends to a wonderfully haunting - sometimes even cold - listening event! Don't miss this one, it's beautiful!
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Product Review

[email protected]
Tue, 2012-10-02 18:48
Rate: 
0
This is an 'Album Of The Year' candidate folks! The medieval touches and the space for the songs to develop ( the shortest song being a shade less than 8 minutes ), built around top notch progressive rock and outstanding female vocals lends to a wonderfully haunting - sometimes even cold - listening event! Don't miss this one, it's beautiful!
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  • "Wow, what lovely album!When we talk about North American Metal, always comes to our minds the idea of a good level of musical technique and the use of great melodies. It’s a characteristic of their scene, and the Power/Heavy Metal trio NINTH CIRCLE is to be as melodic and catching, knowing how to be heavy and melodic on the same proportions. And their new album, “Legions of the Brave”, is an excellent sample of what your Ol’ Big Daddy here is saying.Their music is catching, elegant, heavy, full of life and energy, with good level of technique. And their music really is charming, with excellent clean vocals, great guitar riffs and solos, a rhythmic kitchen showing a good work in terms of technique and weight, and the keyboards work is lovely. And their music is not simply a mix of Heavy Metal with Power Metal aspects, but has high doses of AOR/Hard Rock touches. And it’s excellent.The sound production really is on a high level, making the band sound clear and the arrangements appear, but without losing the notion that we’re dealing with a Metal band.So, you will got in love with their work listening great and perfect songs like “After the Rain”, “Living on the Sun” (what great chorus), “The Quickening” (the great chorus and keyboards are giving a delicious taste to the music), the bold and heavier “Legions of the Brave”, and “Grinding the Bastards Down”. But don’t get the wrong idea: the album is wonderful from beginning to the end.Listen, got on the circle, and buy it. Illegal downloads are for sissies, wimps, posers and other sick mind idiots." - Metal Temple
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  • Arguably the best American prog band going present us with their first album in 8 years.  Its a 47 minute mindf**k of a journey - just one long continuous track.  It starts out in quiet, ambient territory and then transmogrifies into something else.  Guitar leads snake to the fore and then disappear, Mellotrons and Moogs carry you along into the deepest regions of your mind.  Flute and bouzouki and there...and then they are gone.  Intense stuff that walks a similar path to early 70s Pink Floyd.  The band recommends you listen with headphones.  I agree!  Highly recommended.
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  • "Listening to Cardiacs, I get the mental image of a deranged gerbil in a hole somewhere composing music. Although at one point he may have been content to write jingles and fine- tuned pop ditties in exchange for sunflower seeds, Cardiacs represents everything past the point where the gerbil loses his grasp on reality and becomes wrapped up in creative fervor. Now unabated by mundane rodent things, the gerbil and his music fall deeper into madness. Although this may not do well to describe Cardiacs’ manic mix of punk rock and avant-prog, it should give a good indicator of the feeling “Sing to God” gives me as a listener. It’s catchy, experimental, and about as close to the peppy end of a manic depressive episode as I imagine music could aptly depict. Really, it’s pop music beyond words or sense, and I can’t seem to get enough of it.Among other things, punk music arose as an opposition to the bombast and overcomplexity of progressive rock. In lieu of this, it’s quite the irony to see Cardiacs not only fusing the two styles together, but doing so as if prog and punk were made for each other. “Sing to God” runs the gamut in terms of styles: a sense of symphonic bombast comparable to Yes is mixed with Beatles-esque baroque pop sensibilities and injected with the venom of pub- dwelling punk rock. These sounds- which would often conflict with each other in the ‘real’ world- are all fused with a viciously tongue-in-cheek attitude pleasantly reminiscent of Frank Zappa. I could also compare the band’s overdubbed vocal harmonies to Queen, or the general ‘what-the-hell-am-I-listening-to’ atmosphere to Mr. Bungle, but Cardiacs ultimately stand on a ground of their own. Did I forget to mention that the band manage to make this experimental chaos as catchy as the plague?Many of the songs on “Sing to God” rest on a tightrope between order and chaos. Many of the songs enjoy a level of comfort in catchy instrumental hooks and quaint vocal melodies. With the exception of a few tracks (most notably the cinematic-worthy “Dirty Boy”, the unsettling soundscape “Quiet as a Mouse” and some of the shorter musical sketches), the majority of “Sing to God” boasts a foundation in good old fashioned songwriting. Vocalist and mastermind Tim Smith has a zany and wildly charismatic voice that would have even fit comfortably into British alternative rock canon, were it not for the extent Cardiacs take their basic elements and contort them. Although some elements are best kept as a surprise for fresh listeners, be sure to expect everything from ‘chipmunk vocals’ to film score flourishes, classically-influenced pianos, circus music, hyperpunk rhythmic energy and everything in between. Of particular note are the extra-wacky tunes “Dog-Like Sparky”, “A Horse’s Tale” and “Dirty Boy”, a longer piece that gets remarkably profound and damned near celestial by the end of it. Tim Smith’s lyrics are a world of their own, and though there’s not often the sense that there’s an explicit meaning behind the absurdity, they’re absolutely fascinating within the context of such a chaotic album. Although- at an hour and a half- the album may be a little long for one comfortable sitting, there is no filler to speak of, although the first half is decidedly better than the latter.In spite of the zany effects, absurdly surreal lyrics, wall-of-sound production and mile-per- second flow of ideas, Cardiacs remain- at their core- a pop band, and “Sing to God” remains a pop album. In the end, it’s the interplay between the hyper-weird and catchy elements therein that makes the album so bloody fascinating. Depending on where your mental state may be at the time of listening, it will either be a trip through the most euphoric hyperparadise dreams could forge, or a reality-distrupting soundtrack to nightmares. Whatever way it may strike, “Sing to God” is pretty unforgettable, and it just may be the greatest experimental rock record I have ever had the strained pleasure of listening to." - Prog-Sphere
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  • "If La-Ventura hadn’t named their second full-length album White Crow, the word "testament" would have been a fitting alternative. That’s because it’s been almost 5 years since the Dutch melodic metal quartet released their critically acclaimed debut album A New Beginning. Sure, they released an EP between then and now, but La-Ventura have kept a low profile while working on their new material. Their online presence all but vanished – usually a fatal sign in this age of constant updates via Facebook and social media – and many international fans, including myself, wondered whether the band had split up. Thus, the fact that La-Ventura are still around is welcome news. And hearing the pulse of their music again on White Crow is like visiting an old friend who’s changed a bit since you two last met.What do I mean by "changed"? Well, White Crow presents a major shift in La-Ventura’s music. Instead of continuing the moody, gothic-like atmospheres of A New Beginning, the band focuses on guitars and vocals. (This may be because La-Ventura never replaced keyboardist Marco van Boven after he left the band.) So, on White Crow we hear more of Sasha Kondic’s nu-metal-esque riffs and the rhythm section’s throbbing and grooving, while keyboards highlight only certain moments on a few tracks. The production and mix quality have improved dramatically since A New Beginning, perhaps because La-Ventura opted not to self-produce the new record. This time, they worked with producer Didier Chesneau (Headline, Asylum Pyre) and mastering engineering Bruno Gruel (Septic Flesh, Asylum Pyre). The result is a sharper, thicker sound that augments the guitarwork and pushes the keyboards further into the background. Most of the melody on White Crow, therefore, comes from singer Carla (Douw) van Huizen. 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Listen to both of their albums back to back and you’ll notice the difference, especially in the quality of the sound mix. The keyboards and treble dominated on A New Beginning and oversaturated the music, whereas White Crow’s concentration on metal and melody feels more natural and gives the listener a better idea of how La-Ventura may sound live. In the end, though, I still prefer A New Beginning over White Crow. Tracks like "Trefoil," "Only Love Will Find Its Way," and "Memoria" from the former album aren’t just well-written and memorable. They also drip with emotion and earnestness that the listener can feel. That extra touch is often what separates a great song from a good song. And unfortunately, the strongest tracks on White Crow don’t breach that difference, despite how catchy or tight they may be.Still, White Crow is a solid release and one that La-Ventura fans should be pleased with. It retains enough of the familiar melodic focus from A New Beginning, particularly van Huizen’s ardent vocals, while adding more musical crunch and distortion. And although White Crow may not move listeners the way that A New Beginning did, the passion we originally heard from La-Ventura still runs through the music’s veins. Of course, the passion has manifested itself in a different manner this time. But that quality is essential is making good music in any genre. And with White Crow, one of The Netherlands’ most promising female-fronted bands gives us another full-bodied dose of it." - Sonic Cathedral
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  • Stupidly expensive German import arrives as a 2CD set in a hardbound digibook. There is a bonus track as well as an orchestral CD version of the album.Their previous album, Unia, was pretty much reviled by this Finnish band's fanbase. They moved away from the Stratovarious style speed metal and went for something a bit slower and perhaps a touch more progressive. This new album has more uptempo material than Unia but its not a return to the old style either. Its quite symphonic in sound - almost as though they are emulating countrymates Nightwish.
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  • "What do you get when you take a rough and ready Germanic power metal band and add two members of Blind Guardian? You get a better rough and ready Germanic power metal band. Sinbreed is that band and features the talents of Blind Guardian guitarist Marcus Siepen and drummer Frederik Ehmke, which gives them some instant musical credibility and clout. Their 2009 debut When World’s Collide was a rock solid slab of slick, but angry metal in the vein of modern Accept, Herman Frank and Paragon and Shadows improves on that template with even more raspy, Udo-like vocals and thrashy guitar lines. These cats don’t go in for the frilly aspects of Euro-power and prefer to pummel and attack with aggression while maintaining enough melody to hook you in. That makes Shadows a feisty, ill-tempered collection of speedy riffs, catchy choruses, and pissed off attitude, and when power metal is done this well, it’s pretty hard to resist. Not revolutionary, but it sure satisfies that need for edgy power sans pirate shirt.If you loved the last two Accept albums, songs like “Bleed” and “Call to Arms” will go down gangbusters. Lots of fast, in-your-face riffs and the excellently raspy roar of Herbie Langhans combine for some headbanging good times with all the Germanic flair you expect from acts like Grave Digger, but this is much better and more jacked up. It’s one speedster after another, each with a more than adequate chorus and ample nutsack. Sometimes they remind a bit of Steel Attack (title track), others times there’s a distinct Steel Prophet feel to the songs (“Leaving the Road”). Regardless of what influences they borrow from, they keep things straight-ahead, simple and rocking.Tunes like “Reborn,” ”Black Death” and “London Moon” have simple, memorable refrains and manage to be catchy without dialing back on the aggression. Most songs ride along on simple, but heavy riff patterns and rely on Herbie’s vocals to do the heavy lifting, pausing only for some satisfying, if typical power metal solos. It’s a simple approach, but it works for them, though there isn’t much difference from song to song and things do start to bleed together a little on the album’s back-end.Speaking of Herbie’s vocals, he’s a helluva good front man for this type of music. He has the raspy, gravely style down pat and reminds me a lot of new Accept singer Mark Tornillo. He has quite the powerful range and can hit all sorts of interesting notes when he so desires. He also has a bit of Bruce Dickinson’s flair and swagger hiding between his harsher approach (especially on “Standing Tall”) and it helps put the music over and make an impression. Marcus Siepen and Flo Laurin deliver the badass riffage required for this style and their solo work is pretty nifty (especially on “Broken Wings”). Nothing they do will make you fall out of a chair, but they manage to keep things moving for all ten songs and the album feels like it goes by quickly, which is a good thing.A typical dose of Teutonic terror, but a very good one, Shadows blasts away with all barrels, stays very consistent and checks all the required boxes on Yea Olde Power Metal Checklist. These guys are one of my favorite bands of this ilk and between them, Accept and Herman Frank, I get all the Germanic rage I can handle at my advanced age. If you need more muscle in your power metal, these guys have the iron injection ready to go. Go heavy or go home." - Angry Metal Guy
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  • "Refreshing, powerful, and extremely melodic – the adjectives I’d use at a push to describe Teramaze‘s 5th album. I have to admit I pretty much consider this their sophomore release as I was not party to their releases throughout the 90′s, with my first introduction to the band with their 2012 powerhouse ‘Anhedonia’ which quite ironically generated feels of anything but anhedonia. There has been an undeniable buzz around this release and I have found it virtually impossible to escape the widespread word and hype around this album anywhere I look online; generally I wouldn’t necessarily see this as categorically positive as it can taint your expectations unintentionally. Thankfully for the most part, my expectations and hopes with this album have been realised to the point that I welcome any melodic, thrash, progressive or otherwise metallically inclined music fan to check this 79-ish minute thematic conceptual monster.The initial impressions I have when comparing this with ‘Anhedonia’ is a development away from the slightly more thrash-oriented direction that I suspected was the impact of the members growing up in the era where that particular sub-genre beared its greatest fruits. I use the term development as I believe it has very much naturally progressed as compared to what I would consider a departure. The addition of more progressive structures and more varied layering works exceptionally well in Teramaze‘s favour to create a soundscape of in your face riffs, contemplative and brooding moods, earworm choruses, and timeless unity across the entire album.Without doubt one of the things that will grab listeners’ attention is the astonishing fretboard wizardry of band leader and Dean Well’s who treats us to undeniably wondrous smorgasbord of head nodding animosity (special mention to the riff at 2:02 in ‘Line of Symmetry’ – that will get you nodding with the mania of Jack Black), and emotive, creative, delicious lead playing that is akin to guitar heroes aplenty (Petrucci, Sfogli, Skolnick – just to name a few). The balance of great lead playing and rhythm work is a pleasure with nothing inappropriately overstated like one can sometimes expect of the genre. As a special addition, the tones are simply incredible on this album and it is glued perfectly with the bass and bonded by the fairydust keyboards that emerge to keep the sonic palette interesting (courtesy of Circadian Pulse keyboardist Dave Holley).The production is another point of veritable quality with all the instruments presented in a crystal clear state whilst maintaining vibe and not losing out to sterility which is a sad by-product of the self-produced musical climate of 2014. The only complaint I really have is that the mastering is a little hot which is noticeable after the first track (which was mastered in my ideal sweet spot). It sits at DR6 across the whole album on average which is nothing out of the ordinary for this day and age but it occasionally gets fatiguing especially over such a long record. Thankfully moment of distortion are kept to a minimum, however there are some trace elements of weakened transients and the occasional buried vocal that loses intelligibility.Vocalist Brett Rerekura is a joy to listen to and I am appreciative of the fact although his voice pushes the aggressive edge to fit the setting of the music, it is rich in melody and characteristic timbre and is not sabotaged with growls. Long live the singer in a metal band, I say! I detect glimmers of Layne Staley, Sebastian Bach and the rhythmic phrasing of James Hetfield. My only beef is the occasional “Aussieisms” I hear in some inflections which I am hyper-sensitive too (even though I’m Australian myself), however this doesn’t detract too much from what is a splendid vocal performance across the board. There are moments of supreme delicacy especially in ‘Bodies of Betrayal’ which I would have liked to have heard more of as well as a bit more of that delicate side to the band overall to give this album the dynamic curve it deserved. This is of course only a minor criticism.The album’s concept, while not narrative based centres around the experiential nature of deception; especially by that of governing bodies and the powers that be. I think the title of ‘Esoteric Symbolism’ is perfectly apt as this is not the viewpoint or mindset of everyone and best kept as the worldview of a particular minority of people. I think for some the lyrical approach could border on conspiracy but I like the exploratory nature of them and what is truly the harm in questioning some of the taken-for-granted “truths” we hold in this ever-changing world. Kudos to Teramaze for honestly and whole-heartedly fusing their beliefs with such hard-hitting music in a way that I see as completely lacking pretence.For me the standout tracks are ‘Bodies of Betrayal’, ‘Esoteric Symbolism’ (6:53 in this gives me goosebumps), and ‘viii In Vitro’ as I believe they hold the most profound emotional connection with me due to the individual moods they build. I have to admit the only track that I am not particularly keen on is the one with the guest vocals as I feel as though it breaks the flow of the album in a way that was superfluous to requirements. It came across as guests for guests sake which is probably my most direct criticism of the record.This is an exceptional release that stands up to my extremely critical ear and was only let down by perhaps a slight lack of expression with regards to dynamics (mastering and songwriting) across such a long album. Its length to some may indeed be a bit hard to swallow in single listens, however this is par for the course for me as a fan of long form writing. For fans of Metallica, Dream Theater, Alice in Chains and anyone who wishes to have a boot up the bum and an electrode to the brain from an ambitious and highly satiating album." - Metal Obsession
    $12.00
  • "Axel Rudi Pell played a 25 years anniversary show lat year as part of the Bang Your Head festival in Balingen, Germany. The guitar wizard invited many friends for this special night. The result was an impressive setlist, containing hits from ARP and classic hardrock tunes from bands like Deep Purple and Rainbow.My highlight was that also some Steeler songs have been played. Steeler released two great records in the 80's that contain real metal pearls. Great to hear those anthems again.The gig was recorded and it will be released end of April this year as Digipak 3 CD, Digipak 3 DVD (NTSC, code free), Blu-ray and download. Great metal stuff is coming...." - Markus' Heavy Music BlogCall der princess - SteelerNight after night - SteelerRockin' the city - SteelerUndercover animal - SteelerNasty reputation - Rob Rock, Joerg MichaelWarrior - Jeff Scott Soto, Joerg MichaelFool fool - Jeff Scott Soto, Joerg Michael(Current ARP Band):Burning chainsStrong as a rockLong way to goHey hey my myMysticaInto the stormToo late / Eternal prisoner / Too lateThe masquerade ball / CasbahRock the nation​Drum battle - Vinnie Appice, Bobby RondinelliBlack night - Ronnie AtkinsSympathy - John LawtonTush - John LawtonMistreated - Doogie White, Tony Carey, Johnny GioeliSince you've been gone - Graham Bonnet, Michael Voss, Doogie WhiteLong live rock'n'roll – Doogie White, Graham Bonnet, Tony CareySmoke on the water – all guests
    $21.00
  • "Most progressive music fans will recognize guitarist John Wesley from his work as touring member with Porcupine Tree over the last several albums. Yet, Wesley also has an extensive solo collection as well, and he expands it with his sixth album, Disconnect.The album is defined by one singular element, Wesley's guitar playing. Disconnect is definitely a guitar driven prog record. His playing evokes the styles of David Gilmour, Alex Lifeson, Steve Wilson, and maybe even some Jeff Beck. (Lifeson guests on Once A Warrior.) Wesley's sound on many songs is generally sharp and high-pitched as with Once A Warrior, sometimes sounding psychedelic as within Disconnect, and then kinetic, yet muted, within Take What You Need.There's a lot of weight to many songs as well, definitely tipping the album towards progressive metal. When a song does appear to be somewhat lighter at the start, like Gets You Everytime or Mary Will, Wesley jumps in with those slashing guitar licks to slice your ears into tiny little pieces, like stir fry vegetables. If there is a drawback to the album at all, it's that the slashing sharpness of the guitar is pervasive and can get more than a little shrill at times. But there are some lighter pieces here, namely Window and more so Satellite, where Wesley dials up some acoustic guitar in the mix.Briefly, the other significant element here is Wesley's vocals. He has a great melodic voice, emotive and passionate at times, and definitely pleasing. With guitar in hand, a strong voice, and creative compositions, John Wesley has delivered another fine album with Disconnect. Easily recommended." - Dangerdog.com
    $10.00
  • "I've always been rather impressed Mastercastle, the Italian melodic metal band created by expert guitarist Pier Gonella and fronted by the powerful vocals of Giorgia Gueglio. They return with bassist Steve Vawamas and newcomer the respected drummer John Macaluso (Ark, Yngwie Malmsteen, and James LaBrie). The strength of the band has always been the ability to create great sounding melodic metal songs with a rock groove, besides merely showcasing Gonella's amazing fret work.That's what you get on their fourth album, On Fire. It's a worthy title: every song here will burn up your speakers with rocking melodic metal. That's not to say that Gonella doesn't get his turn. There's two instrumentals, The Final Battle and Almost A Fantasy, where he displays his significant guitar skills. And they're in the other songs as well.You'll note that the other songs have some metal or reference to metal in the title. Lyricist Gueglio intended to write a concept album around metal, metallurgy, and alchemy. But she discovered that the words turned more sentiment and emotion, "the passion of making music in a difficult world." Considering the strength and pure entertainment value of these songs, any band could use a bit more of her passion. The songs with that burning rock groove leap from speakers with huge melodies and vocal arrangements. Notable are Silver Eyes, Leaden Roads, Platinum, with Giorgia's most haunting vocals, and the hugely addictive Chains (watch and listen above). Leaning more to the heavy metal side of things are Titanium Wings and the speedy Quicksilver. It's all good: some of the best songs Mastercastle has ever written. On Fire is strongly recommended." - Danger Dog
    $13.00
  • "Edguy are not going to win over Necrophagist or Portal fans with their new album, Space Police – Defenders Of The Crown. That isn’t what Edguy are about. They’re not Kvlt, tr00, etc. They do 80’s metal with massive amounts of fun and they do it really well.All the while annoying people who take music far too seriously. They are also are a superb band live, taking cues from Maiden with sing-along choruses and an almost pop sensibility towards song writing. After listening to Space Police once I was singing some of the tracks without realising it! The last couple of albums ‘Tinnitus Sanctus’ and ‘Age of the Joker’ took a more straight forward hard rock approach and while they were good albums, they didn’t have the pomposity and sense of ceremony ala Helloween or Gamma Ray of the preceding albums. This was for me, always part of the Edguy charm.Studio album number ten starts off almost where “Age of the Joker” left off with the track ‘Sabre and Torch‘ and quickly builds to an over the top masterpiece that brings back memories of  ‘Vain Glory Opera’ and ‘Hellfire Club.’ For some reason singer Tobias Sammet sounds a little restrained on this track and dare I say, somewhat tired. It’s almost as if this album was recorded live and he needed some time to warm up but there is no need to worry he quickly proves me wrong.The title track harks back to something off 2006′s superb Rocket Ride; a keyboard lead epic with a bouncing tempo to get a festival crowd going. It is like it was written for inclusion early in the live set. ‘Defenders of the Crown’ is where the smile really come across my face; double kick drums and a Manowar-esque chorus. It is nothing short of brilliant. ‘Love Tyger’ and ‘The Realms Of Baba Yaya’ are mid to fast tempo numbers that are as catchy as anything they have previously written and prove that Mr Sammet and co. are back in flying form! As usual, the band are excellent; loads of feeling and virtuosity, though not always at the same time….I love this album and it keeps getting better with their version of Falco’s ‘Rock me Amadeus’. Some tracks sound like they were Avantasia (Tobais Sammet’s metal opera side project) tracks but were considered to Edguy for those albums. ‘Do me like a Caveman’ and ‘Alone in Myself’ for example. ‘The Eternal Wayfarer’ is the kind of song Def Leppard wish they could write now, lucky for them Edguy still have it.Space Police- Defenders Of The Crown isn’t just the best thing Edguy have released in years, it is one of the best power metal albums released in years." - Planet Mosh
    $6.00
  • Third album from this great young instrumental tech metal band from Texas. After their tour with Dream Theater on the Progressive Nation tour their star is on the rise. If you are a fan of Canvas Solaris you need to check these guys out.
    $13.00