Solution/Divergence (2CD)

SKU: 378021-9
Label:
Universal Music
Category:
Progressive Rock
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Budget priced but nice slipcased set includes both the "Solution" and "Divergence" albums complete.

 

 

 

 

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  • First time on CD of this rarity from the Cybotron catalogue.  This one's been in my collection for decades so its nice to finally see it in the digital domain.  If you are not familiar with Cybotron, they were more or less Australia's answer to Tangerine Dream and Ash Ra Tempel.  The band features Steven Maxwell Von Braund and Geoff Green on a variety of instruments.  Back in the day Sunday Night At The Total Theatre was an "official bootleg" that the band gave away at gigs in order to drum up interest.  Pure cosmic bliss out music.  Comes with a bonus track and beautiful packaging.  Highly recommended."Firstly there’ a man in a cape on the cover of this obscure 1976 semi bootleg from the groundbreaking Australian cosmic Kosmische duo Cybotron. Secondly there are a whole bunch of cool looking analogue modular synths. It’s common knowledge in music circles that a cape alone is a guarantee of great music, but if you add modular synths to the mix then you’re approaching almost divine intervention.Make no mistake, there is definitely something quasi spiritual about this live recording. The label calls the pieces ecstatic mood ragas and it’s hard to disagree. These are definitely pieces that are all about worship, yet it’s not organised religion that’s the focus here, rather it’s the synthesizer that is the deity.Consisting of Steve Maxwell Von Braund and Geoff Green, Cybotron were heavily influenced by German electronic sounds from the early 70′, and would go on to release 3 studio recordings with an assortment of collaborators before finally disbanding in the early 80′. For this brief period in the mid to late 70′ Cybotron were the mainstays of the cosmic electronic music movement in Australia and did much to develop electronic music in this country.This is electric drone music, large beautiful synthetic slabs of electronics played out across an entire side of an album, thick semi improvised highly repetitious oscillations approached with a rare kind of patience. Here the journey is more important than the destination. There’ tranquillity to side one, which is taken up by the piece Parameters of Consciousness, where it’s not until a quarter of the way in that a beat slowly makes its presence felt. It all happens in such a gradual manner that it’s really only the change in their synth melodies that alert you to its presence. This is space music, experimental synthetic wig outs, and it’s probably more relevant today than it was then.Side 2 is Vulcan, which goes straight for space with seemingly improvised high pitched squiggles of sound accompanying some lower end noodling. It doesn’ really seem to know where its going, though just as there’ a moment of clarity the drum machine beat is brought in high in the mix and suddenly the squiggles turn into riffs and we’re part of a peculiar wrong almost pop stomp. It’s beautiful, chaotic and despite being one of the more musical elements on this recording, still quite experimental. Whilst this takes up much of the side, there’ also a super rare cut Ride To Infinity that was originally released on a 7inch, which is a much more carefully constructed sequencer heavy Tangerine Dream influenced tune of space electrics.The live recordings were originally recorded by 3ZZZ and were released just after Cybotron’ self-titled debut a year earlier. It’s a pretty incredible set. Even on a recording 37 years later it’s still an overwhelming near mystical experience. It feels so right to re release this material now (on vinyl), as here’ one of the almost forgotten pioneers of synthesizer music in this country and they actually sound better and more relevant than most of the music being made today." - Cyclic Defrost
    $15.00
  • Lance King is out...replaced by Iced Earth's Matt Barlow."Formed in 2001, Danish power metal band Pyramaze has managed to maintain a fairly steady line up. However, there have been several recent changes to the vocalist position. After releasing two albums with Pyramaze, 2004's "Melancholy Beast" and 2006's "Legend of the Bone Carver," vocalist Lance King decided to step down. Pyramaze would find a surprising replacement in Matt Barlow, who stepped down from American power metal giant Iced Earth in 2001 to pursue a career in law enforcement. However, Barlow's stay in Pyramaze would be brief, as he was only used to record vocals on "Immortal" before reuniting with Iced Earth. Urban Breed is now the current vocalist for Pyramaze."Immortal" has a predictable, but interesting theme. Each song depicts a different form of immortality. Including the recount of the 300 Spartans gaining immortality both historically and mythologically during their legendary last stand at the battle of Thermopolea, to the horror of not being able to escape from a nightmare and a ghost that wanders for eternity. The theme also covers emotional subjects such as finding peace via suicide to suffering in hell and the never ending battle against the demons that plague us everyday. Though immortality has become a cliche in the power metal subgenre, Pyramaze has shown how diverse the theme of immortality can be.Stylistically, "Immortal" is intended to be a power metal epic, and it delivers. The main influences seem to be Iron Maiden and Iced Earth's "Horror Show" and are dominating throughout. Other influences that appear are the Kamelot inspired piano ballad "Legacy in Rhyme," the Children of Bodom keyboard tone and riff in "Ghost Light" and the King Diamond influenced "Touched by the Mara." Symphonic elements give the album a very epic sense. The opening track "Arise" and the closing track "March through an Endless Rain" sound like they could have come from the "Gladiator" or "300" movie soundtracks.The music on "Immortal" is quality symphonic power metal. Guitarist and mastermind Michael Kammeyer puts in an excellent performance with Matt Barlow showing that he hasn't lost a step and delivering a stand out performance. However, the use of some cheesy Dragonforce-esque guitar effects for a few solos along with some cheesy vocal melodies and overly simplistic riffs are my biggest criticism of the album. However, these complaints are nothing new, as every Pyramaze album to date has incorporated those elements. Even so, the cheesy elements are only a small portion of the album and don't take away from the overall epic feel. Overall, "Immortal" is a positive step for Pyramaze." - Metal Underground
    $14.00
  • This sadly marked the end of the band's progressive era. The songs are a bit shorter than before but Di Giacomo's vocals are as brilliant as ever. Like Garafano Rosso a second tier effort from the band. Not a bad one but not a great one. 
    $15.00
  • Second album from this fusion outfit led by former Passport members Curt Cress and Kristian Schultze. Bassist Dave King only appears on part of the album and Roye Albrighton is long gone, replaced by Frank Diez. The problem with the album is that about half of it has too much funk and is really commercial schlock. The rest of the album is pretty much on par with Defroster...although I could live without Eddie Taylor's vocals. Your move.
    $18.00
  • Well Steve is done resucitating the Genesis catalogue and back to concentrating on fresh solo material.  The new album Wolflight is a bit of a loose concept album and I find it to be one of his strongest releases in years.  The album is filled with lots of guests (including Chris Squire) contributing exotic instruments to the mix adding an old world sound.  Steve's trademark sound is locked into place so if you are looking for the wailing guitar, liquid runs and acoustic delicacy you won't be disappointed.  His vocals has never been my favorite part of a Steve Hackett album but either I've mellowed in age or his voice has - not sure which.  Regardless it fits the music just fine.  Classic Hackett and nothing less.  BUY OR DIE!
    $12.00
  • Second album from DIM finds them leaving Metal Blade and finding a more appropriate home in Napalm Records. This Spanish band is very much cut from the cloth of Epica and After Forever. In fact the production team is Sascha Paeth and ex-Epica's Ad Sluijter. Mark Jansen of Epica also guitars. With Paeth at the controls expect nothing less than a huge symphonic sound and he delivers. While I heard more of a Within Temptation sound on their debut, this one really emphasizes the "beauty and the beast" element driving the connection to Epica home. Not original at all but well done for the genre.
    $12.00
  • Debut release from this fine Dutch melodic prog metal band is cleary inferior to their later work.New limited edition 24 bit gold disc remaster comes in a digipak. Has 2 bonus tracks plus a video clip.
    $11.00
  • With the anticipation of a new Marillion album on the horizon, we are going to hold back for just a short while on our next concept album. That doesn't mean however... that we don't have something very special to hold you over until the next epic is complete...  We present our new "bridge album" to take you from Edison's Children's last epic to out next, entitled:"SOMEWHERE BETWEEN HERE AND THERE..."is a non-conceptual album featuring several songs that have been kicking around the E.C. laboratory for a few years but will doubtfully ever see the light of day otherwise. It's not that we don't love them... they simply don't fit the "concept albums"of the past or the future. They are however, quite exciting pieces of music in their own right.• 15 never before heard tracks/remixes including 7 all new songs + 2 Downloadable Bonus Tracks(including the 3 new songs that were performed at the Marillion Montreal Weekend)- Growing Down in Brooklyn- Someone Took My Heart Away- Winter Solstice (instr.)- Stranger In A Foreign Land- Ever Be Friends- The Darkness (instrumental track intended for The Final Breath Before November but never used)- Sinner's Minus (instrumental track intended for The Final Breath Before November but never used)• 3 songs from the original version of "The Final Breath Before November" - originally mixed by King Crimson's Lead Singer Jakko Jakszyk incl: the original and slightly longer "whispery ending" of Where Were You!- Where Were You (14:10)- Light Years-  The Seventh Sign• The Longing (orchestral) - Mike Hunter originally gave us 2 mixes... a full on Rock Mix of The Longing as well as a far more orchestral version. We wound up using the "Rock Mix" for TFBBN. Hear for the 1st time what the orchestral version sounded like!• Never before released live version of A Million Miles Away from the 2013 Marillion Wolves WeekendThis is a full 80 minute album!
    $12.00
  • "Recorded live over 3 nights in October 2003 (17th-19th).In the summer of 2003 Cardiacs were charged with the unenviable task of casting a wincey eye back.Way back to before Sarah hung up her little saxophone, before Tim Quy broke the nausea rule, before THE CONSULTANT and Miss Swift held the reins. Way, way back.For that coming October’s ‘Special Garage Concerts’, Cardiacs were expected to wipe the grime of the dusty archive from thirty-two tunes everyone had long since forgotten about. Cardiacs dutifully frittered away the waning days behind locked doors, exhuming songs from clanking, obsolete machinery and reams of faded manuscript. Music from the band’s conception in 1976 to their ‘coming of age’ in 1983 was given the dressing down THE ALPHABET BUSINESS CONCERN had always wisely insisted it deserved.With the arrival of autumn the songs had somehow taken on a raw, definitive bent. Haphazard approximations you may have previously heard performed by wide-eyed, puny youths were given deftness, muscle and swagger by the four grizzled and worldly-wise men proudly standing their ground under the Cardiacs banner today.This nostalgic arsenal was duly recorded over three consecutive nights at London’s sizeically challenged ‘The Garage’ concert venue. Privileged witnesses described the spectacle as "one-fifth loving recreation, two-fifths exercise in futility and four-fifths sheer brute force."Cunningly encrypted on to two Compact Discs, as never they were meant to be, Volumes One and Two are a unique testament to pure bloody mindedness and musical irrelevance.Both volumes contain music that has never previously been recorded and re-workings of other tunes that many of the faithful claim to have ‘insider knowledge’ of.They don’t have a clue."
    $34.00
  • "Downtime doesn’t appear to be in this Swedish traditional group’s mindset, at least in this point of their career. Striking while the iron’s hot from their 2011 Heads Will Roll debut and touring with the legendary Lizzy Borden across mainland Europe, the quintet from Gothenburg set about writing the follow up, Storms of War rather quickly. With King Diamond guitarist Andy Larocque behind the production chair, Storms of War will either make Katana another worthy Swedish contender to the Wolf/Enforcer new brigade throne or may cast them into the land of bargain bins forevermore.The opening salvo of riff peeling from guitarists Patrik Essen and Tobias Karlsson on “Reaper” rivals the best 80’s Judas Priest with Accept for good measure- and the trade-off solos are pure ecstasy for all air guitarists worldwide. Sometimes the reference points get a tad obvious: Iron Maiden on “Wrath of the Emerald Witch,” Loudness on “The Samurai Returns,” but Anders Persson’s poised drumming and the multi-octave, high-octane melodies from Johan Bernspang more than make up for any similarities.Bernspang even shows off a lighter, lower playful side to his voice ala Bruce Dickinson during the shorter, gallop-worthy “City on the Edge of Forever.” The swirling wind effects and a slow moving bass line signal the start of the eight-minute epic “In the Land of the Sun,” the verse melody mirroring the open clean plucking before the tempo moves upward and you feel like you are experiencing another NWOBHM journey with a series of Egyptian point-counterpoint guitar refrains. And how about the Omen up and down guitar harmonies throughout “Modesty Blaise” circa Warning Of Danger?Since Iron Maiden feel that their fans desire more progressive rock-length arrangements over the classics they rendered on the first seven studio albums, Katana could fit that missing niche in your collection with Storms of War. Thank you gentlemen for bringing me back to my teenage years with this one. " - Blistering,com
    $14.00
  • The final chapter in the Evermore saga has finally arrived. With new vocalist Nils Patrik Johansson on board the band is poised to take their popularity to the next level. Johansson hails from Sweden and was a remarkable discovery. With a strong set of pipes that instantly remind of "Holy Diver"-era Dio, Johansson has been making a bit of noise of late with the bands Astral Doors and Richard Andersson's Space Odyssey. Truth be told....it was his work with Wuthering Heights that got him those gigs and now you will all understand why. Erik Ravn has fine tuned the sound a bit moving slightly away from the progressive sounds of To Travel For Evermore although it's still a solid mix of neoclassical and progressive metal (just a tad less on the prog side this time). There is a definite infusion of folk elements that blends seamlessly. Tommy Hansen once again produced and with the added time the band had in the studio it is by far their best production yet. So what we have here is folk music, neoclassical metal and symphonic rock all blended together to create a unique musical vision that will appeal to fans of Blind Guardian, Symphony X and Yngwie Malmsteen.Oh yeah....we've even tossed in a bonus track not found on any other release in the world.
    $13.00
  • Red type on black shirt. Front text is simply DSO and the back reads:DIABLO SWING ORCHESTRA No 2 SING ALONG SONGS FOR THE DAMNED & DELIRIOUS(same as the album cover)At the moment only Men's shirts are availabe. Women's shirts coming in shortly.
    $20.00
  • "In the year 222 B.C., deep within the dangerous jungles of east Asia in the country of Zhongguo, the young and terrified king of Qi, with his back against the wall of water on his eastern border, frantically sent 300,000 men to his shrinking western border to fight the cruel and powerful Qin leader Zhào Zhèng. You see, Qi was the last, and farthest east, of the warring states in ancient China. Zhèng fooled his inexperienced and terrified enemy and invaded from the north instead, thus easily capturing the young king. With the last territory conquered, Zhèng declared himself “ShiHuangdi,” the very first emperor. With his rule of the newly unified country, Zhèng standardized Chinese writing, bureaucracy, law, currency, and a system of weights and measures. His reign developed a road system, massive fortifications and palaces. Under this “Qin Dynasty,” the emperor formed the Great Wall of China to stop invading barbarians from the North. Thy Majestie’s latest album is a conceptual tribute to his legacy, one that would unify China for 2,000 years.The album’s most amazing success is the weaving in of classic oriental music with its own symphonic “majestie.” By definition, this is symphonic metal. From a listener’s perspective, this is an audio historical text book that covers a period of history rich in culture and war over a soundtrack of beautifully crafted melodies and a truly phenomenal vocal performance.Much like “Hastings 1066" and “Jeanne d’Arc,” the band perfectly blends music of the historical period with its own. With “ShiHuangdi,” sounds of the ancient guzheng can be heard in songs like “Farewell” and the closer “Requiem.” Most bands merely use history as subject matter for lyrics, but “ShiHuangdi” is more than just a history lesson. The album has a real sense of the orient embedded within the soundscapes Thy Majestie presents. Where Cthonic and Myrath expertly blend the culture of respective native homelands with metal music, Thy Majesite morphs its symphonic metal style around the cultural sounds the album's subject matter, with the band members as movie score composers.The album's breathtaking orchestrations are highlighted by gigantic and fetching choruses. Among the best include “Siblings of Tian,” “Seven Reigns,” “Ephemeral,” and “Farewell.” The euro-blasted riffs of Simone Campione have never sounded better than when drenched in the soy sauce of the must-hear keyboard brilliance of Giuseppe Carrubba. The album is an Asiatic journey with a side of duck sauce, and from the opening jungle scene set by "Zhongguo" (the original name of China), the listener is whisked away to a time long ago to watch modern day China take form.In yet another vocal change (the band’s sixth and fourth over the last four releases), Thy Majestie has finally found “the one.” The wonderfully impressive vocals come via Alessio Taormina (Crimson Wind), who has a range that leans towards Fabio Lione, in terms of ability. Incidentally, the comparison can easily be tested with Lione manning the helm on “End of the Days.” Taormina’s high range is perfect, especially in songs like “Seven Reigns,” “Harbinger of a New Dawn” and “Under the Same Sky.”After a darker departure from its true sound on the 2008 release “Dawn,” Thy Majestie has come full circle to the glorious Italian euro-metal that many U.S. fans will hate because of its “stereotypical” and “overdone” sound. I am not one of those. There are enough metal bands in this world to satisfy the tastes of pretty much every fan. If you are one of those metal fans that expects every single band to create new styles or redefine old ones with every single release, then Thy Majestie is not the music you are looking for. For those fans that never tire of the spellbinding melodies, soaring vocals, and movie score majesty, “ShiHuangdi” should be on the ever growing "short list" of great albums released this year.Highs: All the brilliance of Italian euro power metal over a bed of white rice.Lows: Will not impress anyone that hates the stereotypical Italian symphonic metal.Bottom line: Confucius say: 'When stuck in musical mud....press play on 'ShiHuangDi.'" - Metal Underground
    $8.00
  • Official (?) release of a live performance that has been circulating among tape traders for decades.  This was a live in the studio performance recorded for the BBC in 1973 in front of an invited audience.  Its a classic gig that features Wishbone Ash's Andy Powell on Ashes Are Burning along with Al Stewart.
    $14.00