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  • "In 1972 Jethro Tull were riding high on the crest of a popularity wave. They sold out huge arenas on the back of their critically acclaimed fifth album Thick As A Brick. The question was, how do you follow a concept album comprising a single 44-minute piece of music? The answer was, with a double album of separate songs of course.For the first time in their five year career Tull went into the studio with an unchanged line-up. Founder member and undisputed leader Ian Anderson was still writing songs on flute, acoustic guitar and now saxophone, and he was again joined by guitarist Martin Barre, bassist Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond, drummer Barriemore Barlow and keyboard player John Evans. But which studio to use?The first criterion was that it had to be abroad. The second criterion was that the studio of choice had to have a good reputation. The 18th century Château d'Hérouville near Paris had previously been used by Elton John to record Honky Château and by Pink Floyd for Obscured By Clouds. It contained living accommodation as well as studio facilities, and so seemed the ideal choice. What could possibly go wrong?The choice was a disaster. First up, there were technical problems with the studio itself. Then there was the accommodation... the band all slept in a dormitory, it was very basic which might have been tolerable, had they been the sole occupants of the rooms. Unfortunately, they had unwelcome company, of a bed-bug variety. And then to make matters infinitely worse everybody got food poisoning from the in-house catering.Unsurprisingly the band decided to go home and the decision was made to ditch the hour or so s worth of music recorded in France. They decided to start from scratch and write a whole new album, instead of trying to somehow regenerate everybody s interest and commitment to something that had already struggled.And so to A Passion Play, an album that evolved into a 45-minute piece of quasi-prog rock, with complex time-signatures, complex lyrics and, well, complex everything, really. With a mere nine days left in the studio before the next tour, the pressure was on to produce something quickly. The concept explored the notion that choices might still be faced in the afterlife. It recognizes that age-old conflict between good and bad, God and the Devil.This beautifully packaged 2CD/2DVD case-bound book expanded edition of A Passion Play includes the original album and earlier Château d'Hérouville Sessions both of which have been mixed to 5.1 surround sound and new stereo mixes by Steven Wilson."Disc: 11. Lifebeats /Prelude2. The Silver Cord3. Re-Assuring Tune4. Memory Bank5. Best Friends6. Critique Oblique7. Forest Dance #18. The Story Of The Hare Who Lost His Spectacles9. Forest Dance #210. The Foot Of Our Stairs11. Overseer Overture12. Flight From Lucifer13. 10.08 to Paddington14. Magus Perde15. EpilogueDisc: 21. The Big Top2. Scenario3. Audition4. Skating Away5. Sailor6. No Rehearsal7. Left Right8. Solitaire9. Critique Oblique (Part I)10. Critique Oblique (Part II)11. Animelee (1st Dance) [Instrumental]12. Animelee (2nd Dance) [Instrumental]13. Law Of The Bungle (Part I)14. Tiger15. Law Of The Bungle (Part II)Disc: 31. A Passion Play mixed to 5.1 DTS and AC3 Dolby Digital surround sound and PCM 96/24 PCM stereo.2. A flat transfer from the original master at PCM 96/24 stereo3. Video clips of The Story Of The Hare Who Lost His Spectacles an intro and outro film used in the Passion Play tour of 1973.Disc: 41. The Château d'Hérouville Sessions mixed to 5.1 DTS and AC3 Dolby Digital surround sound
    $40.00
  • Special edition with bonus tracks."At first, I was somewhat unsure what I was going to get when I was sent this promo. The name seemed to be an attempt at a funny pun on the name of a “Harry Potter” character from my childhood. Then I read the press release, and just who was involved and realised it was going to be something awesome. Featuring ex-HELLOWEEN member Roland Grapow on guitars, as well as Thomen Stauch, who used to be in BLIND GUARDIAN, amongst other particularly good musicians, I just knew it was going to be a power metal treat.The album opens up with “I Seek No Other Life” and we’re straight into awesome riff territory, and some fantastically delivered vocals from Urban Breed, combined with awesome riffs and a powerful rhythm section, further developed by some nice bombastic keyboard melodies from Jan Vacik (ex-DREAMSCAPE). This is followed by “High And Low” and this has an awesome main melody that meets perfectly with the powerful chorus as well. A nice sense of groove really moves this song along.Some nice piano melodies open up “Sealing My Fate” in a delicate fashion, with some equally soft vocals here, before the song slams into a nice heavy yet melodic riff. This song has a really nice powerful chorus, and some great playing throughout. “Temple Of The Sun” is an instrumental with a fitting melody considering the title, with a highly symphonic sound to it, which then slams into “Akhenaton”, which is of course thematically similar to its instrumental introduction. This one has a real STRATOVARIUS feel to it, with really good use of dynamics in amongst some fantastic musical moments.“My Mystic Mind” is a real hard hitting track with some great guitar melodies and some nice use of dynamics, clashing stabbing guitars with piano melodies in a really interesting way. “Trail Of Murder” is straight off the bat a fantastic song, with some great guitar riffs meeting some tasty melodies. Again, the strong sense of dynamics is at play here, with lots going on in the song.Title-track “As Daylight Breaks” is a softer track, mainly relying on symphony and vocals to carry the track, with some really well performed parts all around making this a nice emotional sounding track with plenty of build and atmosphere. “Setting Fire To The Earth” follows this up and this one feels like PRAYING MANTIS on steroids, with heavy riffs and some great lyrical themes and vocal harmonies colliding to form a great track.Penultimate track, “Listen To The Storm”, builds an aptly moody atmosphere to start off with, with thunderous sounds meeting some nice guitar parts. The song develops nicely as it goes, with a really nice catchy chorus!The album ends on “Older And Wiser” and this is a nice high energy power metal track to finish things off, with some nice virtuosic playing and a nice fast pace throughout. This closes the album on a real nice note, leaving you feel pumped up and ready for more.The production is spot on, everything has a nice sense of power to it when needed, and softer moments are also equally well done. All the different things that are going on are mixed nicely, from heavy guitars to the softest piano moments. The vocals are also really nicely done, and a heavy rhythm section sound really powers this album along.“As Daylight Breaks” is a must-have for fans of Power Metal the way it should be done, there’s heavy and melodic riffs, soaring vocals, and great songwriting throughout this mammoth of an album. Keep your eyes peeled for this in 2015." - Metal Temple
    $16.00
  • "The sophomore effort from the extraordinary drummer Sebastiaan Cornelissen featuring an all-star lineup - guitarists Alex Machacek, Mike Otram, Susan Weinert, Richard Hallebeek; keyboardists Gary Husband, Scott Kinsey, and Steve Hunt; and bassists Hadrien Feraud, Jimmy Earl, Gary Willis, and Tom Kennedy among others. Since first coming on the scene in the early 2000s, composer and drummer Sebastiaan Cornelissen has emerged as one of the most distinctive new voices on the European fusion scene. Whether acting as a leader, sideman, or group member, Cornelissen's playing combines a sharp sense of empathy and staggering technique with impressive improvisational grace and intensity."
    $8.00
  • Wow!!  Pro-shot live performance of Manuel Gottsching, Harald Grosskopf, and Steve Baltes filmed in concert in Berlin on June 8, 2012.  Over two hours long and features material drawn from Blackouts and Correlations.
    $24.00
  • " Once audiences got a chance to hear Primus' instantly recognizable sound, driven by Les Claypool's bizarrely virtuosic bass riffs, their audience grew by leaps and bounds. It was enough to make their second major-label album, Pork Soda, one of the strangest records ever to debut in the Top Ten. Stylistically, it isn't much different from Sailing the Seas of Cheese, though the band does stretch out and jam more often. This can result in some overly repetitive sections, since Claypool's riffs are the basis for most of the compositions, but it also showcases the band's ever-increasing level of musicianship. Their ensemble interplay continues to grow in complexity and musicality, and that's really what fans want from a Primus record anyway. The material isn't quite as consistent as Seas of Cheese, though there are numerous high points; among them are "My Name Is Mud," on which Claypool plays his instrument like percussion, and "Mr. Krinkle," where he switches to a bowed upright bass. There are hints of lyrical darkness stripped of the band's usual goofiness (especially in the suicide lament "Bob"), but for the most part, the humor is again split between eccentric character sketches, cheery paranoia, and annoying novelties (with a slightly higher percentage of the latter than before). Still, despite occasional flaws, what makes Pork Soda a success is that the band keeps finding novel variations on their signature sound, even if they never step out of it." - All Music Guide
    $5.00
  • 2CD edition comes with a bonus live disc recorded at the Loud Park 2010 festival."Taking a cue from where post-psychedelic and hard rock left off in the seventies before our hard rock heroes either went disco or into questionable directions, Spiritual Beggars’ picks up the pieces, just like Grunge did in its heyday; but adding a little more balls to the mix as an authentic force to be reckoned with. A supergroup featuring members of Arch Enemy, Opeth, Firewind, Carcass, and other extensions, the amped up sound of this Swedish powerhouse throws the pretentious mannerisms of out of the mix, gaining them a status that has created a solid dichotomy between them and many other stoner rock bands.Even as these guys are native to extreme and symphonic metal bands, the tunage gets to the point, reflecting Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, Blue Oyster Cult and early-Priest, as the heavy blues & R&B flavored upbeat moods have always raised the roof. Inflamed by grinding riffage and screaming Hammond organ, Earth Blues again sees Spiritual Beggars taking no retreat from their enigmatic rock and roll feast. The opening track “Wise as a Serpent” immediately spurs the dark groove into power pop territories, yet more intricate sides are heard on the multi-faceted “Sweet Magic Pain” & the dark 1-2 punch of “Kingmaker,” both offering up a salvo of to a Sabotage-meets-Agents of Fortune attitude. Without reckless abandon, these guys also explore a psych/funk mindset on “Turn the Tide,” plus you have “One Man’s Curse” which could have been a long last tune from Come Taste the Band.Even on the ballad “Dreamer” and the low key rocker “Dead End Town,” the band flexes their ideology the same way Zeppelin did at times; and that ideology is further expressed by way of  a set of live tracks on a bonus disc, proving they can hit the road with the attitude to kick ass. Still, whatever way you hear Spiritual Beggars, there will be no denying that their solid foundation of hard rock possesses intrigue, forgoing all the poser musicianship and letting the songs, the true grit of emotion, and the conviction to simply rock out speak loud for Earth Blues. Heavy, commanding, & sophisticated, Spiritual Beggars continue to map out their presence with bold, sharp, & gripping, metallic grandeur, affording no shame whatsoever." - Ytsejam.com
    $14.00
  • "Markus Grosskopf has been a busy man for more than twenty years and he is an even busier man now. The bass player of Germany's melodic metal legend HELLOWEEN has just released the 12th studio album called "Gambling With The Devil" with his band and is preparing for yet another extensive world tour with one of the most successful metal acts of the present. And Grosskopf has one more ace up his sleeve: it is called Markus Grosskopf's Bassinvaders and it shows a completely new side of his musical talent. Bassinvaders has been a creation of Markus while sitting in a bar and enjoying a few drinks. There it was that he got inspired to an impressive idea: a heavy rock record without any guitars at all. Could such a concept work out? Indeed it can! As you will experience on this first Bassinvaders-record called "Hellbassbeaters" lying in front of you. It contains all basic elements a heavy rock song really needs and so much more. You got the strong vocals, rhythmic bass, intoxicating drums and even bass & twin bass solo parts. What you hear is what you get: 100 % genuine heavy / rock record with absolutely no discordant guitar note on it at all. To guarantee a great variety of different influences Markus invited some well-known singing bass players from the German metal scene to join the band. And they didn't need an extra invitation. In DESTRUCTION's enfant terrible Schmier, SODOM's frontman Tom Angelripper and RAGE boss Peavy, Markus found some real Bassinvaders-friends. To push it even further Markus invited a few of his bass heroes to play solos on some of the tracks. When he started searching for support making this album excellent he expected to get a cautious response of 2 or 3 musicians. He ended up organizing more than 13 people for a solo appearance on the album. They named themselves - like the album title - the Hellbassbeaters: Billy Sheehan (Steve Vai, ex-Mr. Big, ex-David Lee Roth), Rudy Sarzo (DIO, ex-Ozzy Osbourne, ex-Whitesnake, ex-Quiet Riot), Lee Rocker (Stray Cats), Marco Mendoza (Thin Lizzy, ex-Whitesnake, ex-Ted Nugent), DD Verni (Overkill), Wyzard (Mother's Finest), Dirk Schlächter (Gamma Ray), Joey Vera (Armored Saint, Fates Warning, ex-Anthrax), Stig Pedersen (D.A.D), Nibbs (Saxon), Tobias Exxel (Edguy), Jens Becker (Grave Digger, ex-Running Wild), Dennis Ward (Pink Cream 69), Peter Baltes (Accept), Jan S. Eckert (Masterplan) and Michael Müller (Jaded Heart). Markus has also invited some guest singers for the songs he wrote: Apollo Papathanasio (Firewind, Time Requiem, Evil Masquerade, Majestic) and the frontman of the legendary Danish stadium rock band D.A.D - Jesper Binzer. While the guest drummers are André Hilgers (Rage, Axxis, Silent Force) and Stefan Arnold (Grave Digger). This guest list and the killer line-up make the first Bassinvaders-album something very special but it's not only about the name dropping. Songs like Boiling Blood, We Live, Voices, Razorblade Romance, Armageddon or the storming Bassinvaders version of the classic Helloween anthem Eagle Fly Free are proving that Markus' late night idea won't be just a one-off slap, but the foundation for another "battlefield" for the always smiling bassist."
    $5.00
  • The technical metal genre has pretty much been dormant for many years. It has somewhat morphed into djent metal these days which bears a lot of similarities but it isn't quite the same thing now is it? After an 8 year pause the UK tech metal band Linear Sphere has returned with their second album. Back in 2004 the band released Reality Dysfunction, an album somewhat molded in the Spiral Architect vein. Their new album, Manvantara, carries on in that direction. Its a conceptual work of an existential and metaphysical nature. What you can expect is mind bending metal cut with extreme precision melded with jazz/fusion breaks. With the departure of Charlie Griffiths who went on to join Haken, the band carried on with founding member Martin Goulding handling all the guitar parts. Vocalist Jos Geron still takes a bit of getting used to - he has a bit of raspiness - but his singing has improved substantially from the debut. Plenty of shred to be heard but all done tastefully. This is one of my favorite styles of metal so it was real nice to hear something along these lines after so many years. Highly recommended.
    $13.00
  • One of the really great progressive bands from the 90s is back with their first album in 7 years.  The band is fronted by Fredrick Ohlsson, one of the great voices in metal.  He sounds very much like prime era Geoff Tate so the band has often been compared to Queensryche.  Truth is there is more of a melancholy/doom power vibe going on but there are progressive overtones and it never becomes plodding in a Sabbath/St. Vitus/Candlemass way.  Its all kind of weird since this is a professed Christian band and those themes do crop up.  Even still Veni Domine should be enshrined in the Metal Hall Of Fame."After nearly seven years of silence, we hear again from Swedish metal band Veni Domine (latin: Come Lord) with their new album Light, now with Massacre Records. Early in their nearly 30 year career the band got 'labeled' as a doom metal band. It's a rather interesting thing as the band pursues Christian themes in their lyrics. Christian is not a religion of doom and despair, but of life and hope.Nevertheless, with a spin of Light, you may hear some of those 'doom' elements: deep sound and a brooding pace. Even Fredrik Sjöholm's voice has low, sober, feel. Yet, Veni Domine work in other elements as well like both symphonic and acoustic elements, and some simply fundamental heavy metal. Where They Story Ends is good example of the merger of the elements. It's at once atmospheric, heavy, and somber, yet gets speedy later on. This is perhaps the reason why some listener tack on 'progressive' when speaking of the band. Alternatively, listening to In Memoriam or Last Silence Before Eternity, the mood and music of Veni Domine might remind of Candlemass-like epic doom metal. More curious company to keep. Sometimes the mood, pace, and soberness of the music matches the title of the song as with Waiting, moved along mostly by voice, acoustic guitar, and steady drums. Finally, the band revisits some of their past by re-recording Oh Great City from their first album 1991's Fall Babylon Fall. I've never heard the original, so I can't speak to difference. It is, however, more brooding heavy metal. If progressive, sometimes epic, doom metal is your flavor of the month, you'll likely enjoy Veni Domine's Light." - Dangerdog.com
    $15.00
  • Excellent new sci-fi prog metal project put together by Carptree mainman and keyboardist Carl Westholm. While Westholm is probably better known for his involvement with Carptree he has also been working in the metal field for many years in bands like Abstract Algebra, Krux, and Candlemass.Westholm has assembled an interesting cast of musicians for this larger than life Ayreon-style project. First off, Mats Leven in handling vocals. Right there that is enough for me. Leif Edling, the driving force behind Candlemass plays bass and helps with lyrics. What else do you need? Various members of Carptree and others fill out the heavily symphonic sound lending an epic scope and feel. Highly recommended.
    $3.00
  • Third album from this New Jersey symphonic rock band.  All of the band's albums are conceptual pieces based around literary works.  In fact the band's name is derived from a Ray Bradbury story.  On A Dark And Stormy Night is based on Madeleine L'Engle's fantasy novel of the same name.  The album is a wet dream for any fan of symphonic prog.  As I make my way through the album I'm frequently reminded of some similarities to Glass Hammer.  This is very keyboard driven music with a healthy amount of guitar leads.  There are even some nice Mellotron sounds popping up now and then.  These guys dream big and hit the mark.  Highly recommended.
    $11.00
  • "The Allman Brothers Band's fifth live release in 25 years, cut during 1994 in Raleigh, NC, and at the Garden State Arts Center in New Jersey, is a high-water mark in their Epic Records catalog. If anything, they're even better here than they were on the earlier Evening With the Allman Brothers Band, the old material getting fresh new approaches -- the band was on for both nights, and presented sets, including an acoustic version of "In Memory of Elizabeth Reed" and "Jessica" (which won a Grammy Award), that soared and flowed, especially Dickey Betts and Warren Haynes' guitars. What's more, the clarity of the recording and the volume at which it was recorded make this a most rewarding 70 minutes of live music on a purely technical level -- you can practically hear the action on the guitars during the acoustic set. It won't replace Live at Fillmore East or the live portions of Eat a Peach, but it deserves a place on the shelf not very far from them." - Allmusic
    $5.00
  • "The new Echolyn The End is beautiful is a far cry from the absolutely fantastic As The World which still is one of my favorite Echolyn albums! That said, they´re most certainly progressive in the truest sense of the word. As this album steers towards new areas. And YES it is brilliant! This my friend is a top notch album of the highest order!The music is excellent as always. They still have the complexity in their arrangements and individually they deliver the goods! But...and there is a but....you have to wait till track #6 "So Ready" to get some of their trademark Gentle Giant-like vocal arrangements. And therein my dear prog friends the problem lies. We have come to expect some fine complicated vocals arrangements. Now they're almost gone. Brett Kull & Ray Weston used to deliver the excellent lead vocals with the rest of these wonderful musicians following on superb second vocal harmonies.And they still do, that is, deliver the vocals...but somehow its not the Echolyn of yesterday! On the other hand, this is about progressive music and as such they still are, this great US band with superb arrangements and a brilliant mind for new thinking in this musical world we adore and love! "Misery, Not Memory" is the track that comes closest to that of the former Echolyn –ideology...with traces of Gentle Giant contra-point music style.Overall I must say that I love this album (my favorite still is As The World) for the sheer power and exuberance in fabulous ideas and musical brilliance. And oh....they dare....they dare go a step further...which is what this is all about: progression!So if you are new to these guys, get the first one (just out in a fine new package...with bonus) then work your way up till this one! Echolyn, a fine US prog band that always deliver! If you are a true prog fan then this album should be on your want list! Yeah, I am calling your prog loyality into question! This is a killer album! Make no mistake! This one goes to prog history!" - Prog Planet
    $11.00