Wardens Of The West Wind

SKU: SC274-0
Label:
Scarlet Records
Category:
Power Metal
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"Symphonic Power/Progressive metal group Wind Rose are sure to impress with this epic new album Wardens Of The West Wind. If you appreciate groups like the rousing metal bands Fairyland and Blind Guardian then I do suggest that you give Wind Rose a go.

This is their second full-length album, and although I haven't heard Wind Roses's first Shadows Over Lothadruin from what I have read as impressive as that album was the Italian band has stepped up their game with Wardens Of The West Wind. That very cool cover art is by Felipe Machado Franco his other work can be seen on metal albums by the likes of Blind Guardian, Brainstorm, Rage and Rhapsody Of Fire. Bass player/producer Cristiano Bertocchi a former member of the prominent Italian metal groups Labyrinth and Vision Divine had also spent time working with Wind Rose and he joined the band in 2014.

Folk ingredients are present and with the inviting sounds of traditional instruments and male chants on "Where Dawn And Shadows Begin" this is the precursor to some rather spirited metal on "Age Of Conquest". "Heavenly Minds" is very memorable with a touch of Symphony X in the chorus. Though the band is inspired by Symphony X and also Blind Guardian and Dream Theater. Wind Rose's songs really captivate, Francesco Cavalieri's excellent lead and those male group vocals are very likeable and they are integrated to great effect. The musical side of Wind Rose is also riveting with a fair degree of complexity, power and that symphonic charm plus while yes it's present Wind Rose's songs aren't constantly locked in rapid metal mode.

The longest track a potent epic called "Skull and Crossbones" is just over seven minutes, but there is no need for those over extended songs on Wardens Of The West Wind when the ten on offer should more satisfy your epic musical needs. Wardens Of The Wind should go a long way to ensure a steady increase in the number of Wind Rose fans." - Sea Of Tranquility

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  • "A concept album following the life cycle of a human being, childhood to citizen adult, the lyrics (and music) are replete with references to all of the odd destructive and self-destructive patterns our 'civilized' race has attached itself to. Brainchild of Athenian Nikitas Kissonas, Methexis' music is never predictable and always unexpected. Begin with The Enid's Joe Payne's amazing and enigmatic voice. (Please excuse my previous error in that I mistakenly thought it was Nikitas singing.) It seems that Joe can sound like anyone he chooses. Then focus on Nikitas' eclectic and stunningly diverse guitar soundings and stylings. Then try to pinpoint his influences, the styles he is drawing from in order to make his eminently creative and original songs. It is nearly impossible. This is music that draws from so many diverse and unusual styles and ideas. This is music that tests the capabilities, the combinations and permutations, that are possible within the realms of human expression using sound and music.1. "Chapter IV - Ruins" (4:49) starts the album with 'the end'! The fourth and final suite in the album's song-cycle, entitled "ruins," is what Nikitas chooses to begin his album with. I love it! It is an atmospheric 'post-apocalyptic' song much in the vein of Mariuz Duda's LUNATIC SOUL or even Norway's ULVER.2. "Chapter 1 - Exterior - Remember, Fear's a Relic" (6:11) opens with the energetic force of a great blues-based jazz-rock song--complete with Hammond organ, sassy horn section, and bluesy GINO VANELLI-like vocal. A surprise as this was quite unexpected but I have to admit: it is quite refreshing and enjoyable. The falsetto chorus is also quite unusual, but then, everything Nikitas creates is quite unusual and unexpected. Quite fun. (9/10)3. "Chapter 1 - Exterior - The Windows' Cracking Sound" (1:46) (9/10) is another unusual song for its surprising mix/engineering: the entire time a heavily treated electric guitar is slowly strumming the accompaniment to Joe Paynes' delicate, untreated voice, a drummer is jamming away at a very fast pace in the background. Once, at the end, the drums are brought up to front and center before being faded back to deep background for the horn opening of the next song, 4. "Chapter I - Exterior - Who Can It Be" (6:34) is a song performed by a horn ensemble with occasional whispered vocal and mid-song classical guitar interlude (including a brief slightly angular/diminished replication of Beethoven's "Ode to joy"). The post-guitar interlude shifts into PETER HAMMILL territory with some odd jazz instrumentation for accompaniment and the PH vocal. When thing amp back up--first via return of the horns and then full TOBY DRIVER-like band to spacey end. So odd! So outstanding! (10/10)5. "Chapter I - Exterior - The Origin of Blame" (3:27) starts out as a piano-accompanied cabaret-like vocal much in the MATTHEW PARMENTER style. The cacophonous 'chorus' is equally 'out there'--but so creative and idiosyncratic! This is such an amazing mind that can successfully weave such odd and unusual sounds and styles into the flow of this, a concept album. I call it genius! (10/10)6. "Chapter I - Exterior - Prey's Prayer" (6:07) is an instrumental support/setup for an amazing guitar solo. The guitar play reminds me of JEFF BECK, ROY BUCHANAN, HIRAM BULLOCK, or RAY GOMEZ! Great horn support. This is not a song to be missed! Guitar this sublime is too seldom recorded! (10/10)7. "Chapter II - Interior - Sunlight" (8:20) opens with some more adventurous guitar sounds before shifting into a sensitive acoustic guitar supported ballad--not unlike the recent work of JOHANNES LULEY including the voice (though on this song Joe's voice is more similar to that of RITUAL lead vocalist, Patrik Lundström). Quite unusual song structure and sound combinations. So like our enigmatic chameleon Nikiitas! Excellent song. The final section sounds like recent ECHOLYN before the solo voice closes in Peter Hammill fashion! (10/10)8. "Chapter II - Interior - The Relic" (8:28) opens with a minute of purposefully picked chords on acoustic guitar which are eventually joined by Joe Payne's equally composed yet emotional vocal. By the end of the second minute piano and then full band have joined in to support a multi-voiced chorus. In the instrumental fifth minute the music builds in layers and intensity before crescendoing and crashing into silence with a brilliantly placed audible sigh to restore the gentle yet plaintive sounds and structures of the opening. Piano and violin--and later cello--perform some nice soli to accompany the synth orchestral sounds. Nice Post Rock song. (9/10)9. "Chapter - Suiciety" (6:40) opens with a fast-paced, hard-driving PORCUPINE TREE-like sound of drums, odd spacey synth sounds and ominous keyboard bass chords until 1:37 when the drumming cuts the pace in half while the pile of ominous incidentals and washes mounts higher and higher. Then at 2:20 everything drops away to leave the slowly picked notes of a solo classical guitar. Cymbol play accompanies the addition of orchestral participation (I especially like the horns sections' contributions). This is then followed by a creative section in which the drummer creatively fills orchestra-supported 'space' with his cymbol and kit play. A return to full force in the ominous chord progressions crescendoes and decays while Joe Payne's treated voice alone fills the album's sad finale. (9/10)This is an awesome album of eclectic music! Being a concept album with songs integrated to express this elevates it a notch above Methexis' previous 2011 effort, The Fall of Bliss (which I also love). A brilliant masterpiece of modern progressive rock music--one that gets me so excited to come back to it and hear it again. Special shout out to Linus KÃ¥se and Nikos Zades, the keyboard player and sound design/D&B programmer, respectively. Amazing contributions! And Walle! Awesome play on the batterie! Check this one out, people!5 stars, definitely essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music." - ProgArchives
    $15.00
  • Second album from this Greek progressive metal band finds them with a new label and new vocalist. The foundation of the music remains the same - melodic, keyboard driven prog metal along the lines of Circus Maximus, Dream Theater, and Vanden Plas."Possibly indicative of the album title, Greek progressives Persona Non Grata hoped to 'up their game' with their sophomore release, Quantum Leap. Released in December, this fine work of progressive metal could easily be added to the best of 2011, right along side their peers Symphony X and Dream Theater.Quantum Leap, generally a heavy album, effortlessly blends classic heavy metal, notable in the melodies and traditional guitar work, with enough technical elements to offer progressive intrigue. By example, Redemption of Sins is indicative of this pattern, with it's notable rock/metal fusion finish. Alternatively, a song like Diversity remains heavy throughout, only to be brightened by synths and guitar. While not the best piece here, if you like your prog erring on the side of heaviness, it satisfies.Yet, more traditional melodic prog metal can be found from the start in Imaginative Mind and Lend Me a Hand. PnG stretches this motif and their skills on the longer 9 AM News. Captive and Grief, two of the finest songs here, push the somber subtlety of piano with vocals only erupt in soaring progressive power metal. Any doubts about the skills of new vocalist Aris Pirris are dispelled on these two numbers, also.Yet, after the fine arrangements, the singular most stunning characteristic of Quantum Leap is the bass work of new player, Chris Vogiatzis. Honestly, he nearly steals the show. His work is so fundamental and inspiring as to lift the entire PnG crew to greater heights. I would recommend buying the album for this alone.Fundamentally, however, Persona Non Grata's Quantum Leap is simply entertaining and intriguing progressive metal. Certainly, something you'll want to listen to several times over. Strongly recommended." - Danger Dog
    $14.00
  • Their first album was laid back psychedelic folk with a female singer. Quite beautiful.
    $16.00
  • New CD/DVD edition is considered by Mr. Fripp to be quite a revelation due to the remix of Steven Wilson. The standard CD has a new stereo mix of the album as well as 3 bonus tracks. The DVD features a 5.1 remix of the album plus hi-resolution stereo mixes of the bonus tracks. This was always the oddball album in the King Crimson canon - equal parts jazz to rock. Jon Anderson's guest vocal appearance on "Prince Rupert's Lament" still induces chills. Highly recommended.
    $22.00
  • "Assignment is another band releasing a new album on a new label after a short silence, five years to be correct. Inside Of The Machine, the progressive metal band's third work, finds them signed to Belgian's Mausoleum Records. It's also a quite ambitious work at that: a concept album with four different vocalist player character parts, and several guest guitarists.For the concept and vocalists, which include Robin Beck, Mats Leven, and Michael Bormann, and their parts you can check out the information following the review. Of three guest guitarist the most notable wizard is Bernie Versailles from Redemption offering some lead songs, though I don't know on which song(s).As for the music, this Assignment at their best, creating a progressive metal package by mixing elements of classic melodic hard rock, melodic and symphonic metal metal, power metal, and even a little rock fusion. That comes in the latter half of the instrumental Bug In The System, one of the best songs here. Some the best vocal songs are those with Bormann and Robin Beck (only because she's one of the best rock vocalists around), specifically Love Between Heaven & Hell and Ending Love. The latter one finds Beck's presence a bit stronger in front end which makes the song even more compelling. The antagonist in the story is obviously The Machine and it's introduction in I Am The Machine has a heavier darker feel. Alternatively, the concluding End Of The Machine has more melodic and brighter, yet still forceful, timbre to it. Throughout you get lots of ripping guitar leads often paired alternating synth solos. I'm guessing the full CD package comes with all the lyrics, otherwise, at times, the story is difficult to follow. Once more, Assignment's Inside Of The Machine is an ambitious and entertaining work of melodic progressive metal. Recommended." - Danger Dog
    $16.00
  • The band's second album for Arista. Personally I always preferred this one ahead of their debut but that's a personal choice (no hate e-mails please). Indispensible prog.
    $14.00
  • "LANCER is a power/speed metal band based out of Arvika, Sweden. Following the release of a Demo and an EP, they present their second full-length released entitled “Second Storm,” containing nine tracks. “Running from the Tyrant” is the opening track. Right out of the gate there is a contagious energy imbedded in the swift pace of the song, and a big, full chorus. Isak’s vocal range is impressive, in the tradition of the bands that precede them in this genre.“Iwo Jima” is a nice war anthem, full of pleasing harmonies and big melodies, really drawing out the sound in grand fashion. Favoring the keep the guitar solo as an accent to the main melody, they do a good job of keeping that memorable long after the track ends. “Masters and Crowns” features that two guitar opening that is so common in the NWOBHM movement of the late 1970’s and early 1980’s. The sound here in this track really soars, shooting high into the sky. When Isak lets loose, he can really negotiate his voice in the upper ranges with ease, as in the opening scream of “Behind the Walls.” The hastened pace careens straight at you, with the double bass thundering forward like well-oiled machine. The fifth track “Aton” clocks in just under ten minutes. It has a slower and more deliberate rhythm, like any epic story. There is definitely a mystical quality to this piece and some noted influence from IRON MAIDEN in the guitar harmonies, particularly after the second chorus. There are really three distinct movements in the song if you will, and they connect very memorably. I really like the way the song ends in this massive crescendo of beauty and light. Returning to the swift rocking pace, “Children of the Storm” lays down a super melodic chorus and a thick bridge section chocked full of guitar harmonies. Key changes provide a nice element of surprise. “Eyes of the Liar” is another song where that mysterious, almost supernatural quality permeates the track, but does not overtake the main melody. “Fools Marches On” is the closing song and the second longest on the album. They close in grand fashion here, with a track that seems to encompass nearly every element that we have heard to date. LANCER’S power metal is all about feeling and emotion. It just makes you feel good, like you want to take up a quest to a distant land and leave everything behind. The musicianship and songwriting is strong and fresh, and the band’s synergy is driven by the very impressive vocals of Isak Stenvall." - Metal Temple
    $13.00
  • Outside of the UK, Gordon Giltrap isn't all that well known but the Brits are smart.  They recognized a national treasure.  Mr. Giltrap is one of the finest acoustic guitarists on the planet.  In the 70s and early 80s he made some extraordinary progressive rock albums that demonstrated his talents on acoustic and electric guitar.  The results were somewhat similar to Steve Hackett's solo albums.  Since then he has focused solely on acoustic guitar and became somewhat entrenched in the folk scene.Ravens & Lullabies finds Gordon Giltrap returning to the progressive rock scene.  This album is a collaboration with keyboardist Oliver Wakeman.  Fronting the band is Arena vocalist Paul Manzi (former Yes vocalist Benoit David sings lead on one track).  The rhythm section consists of Steve Amadeo and Threshold's drummer Johanne James.  Its a beautiful album demonstrating Giltrap's amazing technical ability on acoustic guitar, while Oliver Wakeman contributes the symphonic element.  Highly recommended.
    $9.00
  • "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
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  • Expanded CD/DVD edition. The CD comes with 5 bonus tracks.  The DVD contains a 5.1 surround mix and a ton of documentary/interview footage.Without abandoning the sense of melody and dynamics that remain the Magenta trademark, Metamorphosis sees the band taking a darker, more intense path with powerful, sometimes disturbing subject matter."I think this album is going to surprise a lot of people," says keyboardist Rob Reed "It will challenge many people's preconceptions of what Magenta are, and what we are capable of musically. Most of it was written on guitar, so some of the material is heavier than before, whilst retaining most of the elements of the Magenta sound."The album also marks the band's return to long-form pieces of music, with two 20 minute-plus songs, and a new, richer sound with the addition of strings. "Watch out for some brilliant performances on the record." Reed says. "Christina Booth's vocals are just astonishing, Tim Robinson delivers a virtuoso performance on drums and Chris Fry has pushed the bar even higher than usual with some amazing lead guitar. I have no doubt that this is, by far, our finest album to date."Magenta was formed in 2001, quickly capturing the attention of progressive rock fans around the world with a sound influenced by the icons of the past. Over the years the band has performed at virtually every major progressive rock festival in the world including gigs at Rosfest, BajaProg, and Nearfest. Year after year, the band has received awards from various progressive rock publications. In 2007, the band won two awards from the esteemed British Classic Rock Society including Best Band and Best Female Singer.The album was mastered by Grammy winning engineer Bob Katz. To further enhance the package, Metamorphosis features startling artwork from the noted graphic design house Killustrations.
    $15.00
  • 2 CD edition comes with a bonus disc featuring acoustic versions of material from the core album."Recently Dutch symphonic metal outfit Epica celebrated their first decade as a band with a massive show and a release of a DVD and now they’re back with a brand new studio album, which may very well be their finest moment to date…On “The Quantum Enigma” Epica has grown far beyond their humble musical beginnings. The symphonic elements and the massive choirs are still very much in place, but the band has found a new sense of renewed vigour and focus. High paced scorchers like ‘The Second Stone’, ‘The Essence Of Silence’ and ‘Reverence – Living In The Heart’ are poignant examples of the aforementioned refound sense of urgency. The band isn’t afraid to incorporate elements from thrash, death and progressive metal in their musical fabric, which makes this album a tempting listening adventure for people who aren’t necessarily into female fronted/symphonic metal.Vocalist Simone Simons shines on tracks like ‘Omen – The Ghoulish Malady’ and ‘Canvas Of Life’, while Arien van Weesenbeek shows his drumming prowess in the aforementioned ‘The Second Stone’ and ‘Essence Of Silence’. A special mention should go to guitarist Isaac Delahaye. His tasteful leads and solos are the proverbial icing on the cake. Particularly the main guitar solo in ‘The Quantum Enigma – Kingdom Of Heaven part 2’ is simply mindboggling.Production-wise “The Quantum Enigma” is a true gem, thanks to the considerable talents of Joost van den Broek (ReVamp, MaYan) and Jacob Hansen (Volbeat, Pestilence). The direct and in-your-face production sound gives the album a definitive edge which is somewhat lacking on some of Epica’s earlier works.“The Quantum Enigma” is the sort of record where everything comes together. Great songs, great atmosphere and the band has finally managed to capture the energy of their live shows on a studio album. It’s still early in the year, but “The Quantum Enigma” is destined to become one of the musical highlights of 2014." - This Is Not A Scene
    $14.00
  • Tony Bank's first solo album, originally released in 1979, is given a fresh breath of life with a new stereo mix courtesy of Nick Davis. This was done at the same time that Rutherford and Collins recorded solo albums as well - between the time of And Then There Were Three and Duke. Musically it pretty much fits into that gap as well. Its a concept album that sounds a bit like the lighter side of Genesis. One cool piece is the opener - "From The Undertow". It opens the album and was composed as the intro the the Genesis tune "Undertow". I remember seeing the British film "The Shout". Weird flick but that track was featured in the soundtrack and it was moody and creepy and un-nerved the hell out of me."Esoteric Recordings are proud to announce the release of 30th Anniversary editions of the album “A Curious Feeling” by Genesis founder member and keyboard player Tony Banks on Monday October 19th 2009. This classic album, inspired by the novel “Flowers for Algernon” by Daniel Keyes, was first released in October 1979 by Charisma Records. Recorded at Polar Studios in Stockholm, whilst Genesis were on a brief hiatus following the “And Then There Were Three” tour, this majestic work featured contributions from drummer Chester Thompson (a member of GENESIS for concert appearances) and vocalist Kim Beacon.Stylistically the album is equal to anything Banks composed for Genesis and includes the evocative instrumental “The Waters of Lethe” and the song “For a While” (released as a single in 1979 and issued as a Download single via iTunes on October 19th) among its highlights. Significantly, this new edition of “A Curious Feeling” has been remixed from the original master tapes by Nick Davis (who also remixed the entire Genesis catalogue in 2007) and Tony Banks, resulting in a more dynamic sounding album."
    $12.00
  • Lifesigns is a new band put together by keyboardist journeyman John Young, along with Nick Beggs (Steve Hackett), and Martin Beedle (Cutting Crew).  Featured guests include Steve Hackett, Jakko Jakszyk, Thijs Van Leer, and Robin Boult.  5 long tracks that have a contemporary prog sound but with nice extended instrumental parts.  Not a technical tour de force - emphasis here is on melody.  I'm reminded a bit of Steve Hackett's recent works.  While John Young has written all the material, bassist/Stickist Nick Beggs quietly steals the show.
    $15.00
  • "Get All You Deserve is a high-definition 4 disc audio-visual set from Steven Wilson.Directed by long-time visual collaborator Lasse Hoile, Get All You Deserve was filmed in Mexico City during the recent Grace For Drowning Tour. The set captures the spectacular live experience that Wilson and Hoile created for the tour on Blu-ray, DVD and 2CD.Following the release of Grace For Drowning, Steven embarked on his first ever solo tour, assembling a virtuoso band, featuring Marco Minnemann (drums), Nick Beggs (bass), Theo Travis (flute and sax), Adam Holzman (keys) and Niko Tsonev (guitars), to accompany him. For the shows he worked extensively with Lasse to create a show unlike anything else he had attempted with his other bands, Porcupine Tree, Blackfield, No-Man or Bass Communion.The shows immersed fans in a rich sensory experience: rear speakers provide surround-sound effects, giant screens show off Lasse's films made specifically to accompany these songs, and cutting-edge lighting designs giving texture to each song.Get All You Deserve captures one of the key shows from the tour. Recorded at a sold-out Teatro Metropolitan in Mexico City, the gig features tracks from both Wilson's solo albums along with the new, as yet unreleased, track Luminol. " 
    $13.00