The Raven That Refused To Sing (Blu-Ray)

Steven Wilson's solo career apart from Porcupine Tree, is for this listener, far more interesting.  Whereas PTree currently skirts the line between rock and metal, his solo work fits squarely in the progressive rock arena.  The Raven That Refused To Sing (and other stories) is easily his magnum opus.  The musicianship is stellar - he recorded with his touring band: Nick Beggs (Stick), Guthrie Govan (guitar), Adam Holzman (keys), Marco Minnemann (drums), and Theo Travis (flute, sax).  Mr. Wilson has also dug two things out of mothballs - King Crimson's Mellotron and Alan Parsons.  It was Steven Wilson's wish to one day work with Alan Parsons, who came on board as engineer.  I can't tell you who is responsibile for what but I can tell you that the production is impeccable.  The opening epic "Luminol" drips with the holy 'tron sounding like a cross-generation blend of King Crimson eras.  And so it goes through out the album.  Some utterly fierce playing on this album.  From beginning to end a stunning effort.  BUY OR DIE!

This is the Blu-ray edition.  In addition to the surround and hi-res stereo mix you get a 23 minute documentary and a bonus track.

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  • Magnificent spacerock journey is a conceptual work that was one half of a duology completed by "Time To Turn". Stunning Floyd-like soundscapes with Frank Bornemann's ever present guitar runs. Comes with a live version of "On The Verge Of Darkening Lights". Highest recommendation.Please note this disc incorporates EMI copy control technology which seems to allow you to do whatever it is you would normally do with a CD but you can't rip it. Bummer.
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  • Norway's Pagan's Mind have risen to the pinnacle of the melodic/power metal scene. Great vocals from Nils K. Rue backed by a band powered by chops from hell. Plenty of prog moves to keep fans of Dream Theater and Circus Maximus interested. Highest recommendation. 
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  • After a brief respite the Finnish metal Gods are back with another slice of melodic power metal with progressive touches. Neoclassical keys and guitar, anthem filled vocals, masterful musicianship...there is something here for all. Oh yeah! Disc has a Derek Riggs cover.
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  • Someday Claudio Simonetti is going to start looking forward and not over his shoulder.  Daemonia is the worthy successor to Goblin, working in similar territory - perhaps too close as it seems that the agenda of the band is to record and perform newer, heavier, arrangements of classic Goblin material.  In this case the quartet tackles two classic Goblin soundtracks: Dawn Of The Dead and Zombi.  In addition you get new recordings of 3 classic Goblin tracks.
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  • CD version of the live show from Katowice, Poland in 2005. Basically the audio soundtrack of the DVD previously available. Digipak - supposedly a limited edition.
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  • "First Alcoholocaust and now Narcotica. Sense a theme? No wonder the two members of Invisigoth — Cage on all instruments and Viggo Domino on all vocals — call this their "headphone record." And while hearing it under the influence of something might enhance the listening experience, it's already pretty potent.More melodic and less gothic than its predecessor, Narcotica presents nine songs that echo Peter Gabriel, Pink Floyd, Porcupine Tree and the Flower Kings while still retaining their originality. This is tough music to slot into any neat category, making for adventurous and rewarding listening. Five shorter pieces — including the groovy rocker "Scars and Dust" and the seductive, thought-provoking "Pornocopia" — allow Domino to stretch his voice and Cage to work within more structured musical settings. Those songs are sandwiched between a four-part epic called "Dark Highway." Two parts each begin and end the album, and they each average about 10 minutes, pulsing with Middle-Eastern swirls, symphonic elements and dramatic sonic imagery, The entire piece easily is this duo's most ambitious work, brought down only slightly by some strange spoken-word passages.Taken as a whole, Narcotica emerges as a moody and textured album. It's at once complex and accessible, dense and sparse at the same time, and wholly intoxicating." - Sea Of Tranquility
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  • Latest from the resurrected Swedish symphonic band continues to sound perilously close to The Flower Kings but with Patrick Lundstrom (Ritual) and Aleena Gibson sharing vocals. A surprising new member is guitarist Per Nilsson from Swedish death/trash metal band Scar Symmetry. He seems quite comfortable hanging with the decidedly softer nature of this music. The great Morgan Agren plays drums and FK/Karmakanic bassist Jonas Reingold is here as well. Keyboardist/leader Hans Lundin holds the whole thing together with as much vintage sounds as you could possibly want.
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  • "An excellent debut album... And a big surprise to me!This band mixes elements and influences of a lot of bands I love... Rush (Saming's voice...), Saga (specially in the Ola Andersson guitar's sound, wich is sometimes very similar to this band, both in riffs and instrumental interludes...), Queen (the vocal harmonies and choirs...), Dream Theater (specially in the harder parts...), Supertramp (A.C.T are so eclectic as this band, and they have a similar dramatic feeling)... But adding a lot of originality in the form of a curious sense of humour, and a some odd musical experiments (calypso, pure jazz...) The results are simply brilliant and very funny. It's a pleasure to hear this album again and again, because it's catchy, fresh and hilarious.The quality level of the tracks is also really high... Maybe the song Today's Report is under the rest of the tracks... But it's just my personal taste. The rest of the tracks are good, with a lot of highlights. The long one, Personalities, it's just a collection of short songs put toghether, and it lacks some musical coherence, because there is any melodic connection between the fragments... But I love it anyway, because it's catchy, funny and wonderfully played, despite the silly lyrical concept.The production of the album is also very good... Not spectacular, but very efficient and clear. I specially like the guitar sound, powerful and Saga-oriented, and the keyboard's arrangements. The musicianship is also very competent... Every instrument has protagonism, and the friendly Herman's voice is well adapted to the funny musical direction. The main composer, Jerry Sahlin, makes also a very good work with the different keyboards.Best songs: Abandoned World (powerful track wich opens this album in a heavy way...), Waltz With Mother Nature (maybe the best song of the album, with an incredible instrumental part and a funny calypso melody...), Welcome (very catchy verses, and another great musical interlude...) and Personalities (funny and really catchy, although a bit unconnected...)Conclusion: a band with a true personality... Being not afraid of showing their influences, A.C.T are able to give the sensation of being hearing something new, fresh, and full of brilliant ideas. The prog metal lovers will find some interesting moments. The eclectic prog aficionado will also enjoy this work. And the people searching for humor in prog will be surprised! So I can strongly recommend this album to everyone, because being so variated, well executed and with this amount of good compositions, every listener will surely find something interesting on it." - ProgArchives
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  • "Germany's Brainstorm turned the corner from traditional Teutonic power metal with 2008's Downburst, by offer a little more intrigue in their musical compositions. Yet, the band hasn't veered from mainstream melodic heavy metal at any time. This year's On the Spur of the Moment continues the current path with some subtle nuances.While still melodic, the songs seem heavier, maybe even darker, than previous material. Nevertheless, from chord structure to vocal arrangements, melody and harmony remain. Notable is the opener Below the Line, No Saint No Sinner, and the impressive In These Walls. Additionally, many songs have a strong metal-rock groove that adds to their accessibility: check out Temple of Stone, A Life on Hold, or No Saint No Sinner. One surprising feature is the nature of the guitar solos. Many are both traditional and fiery as on A Life on Hold, Still Insane, and Temple of Stone. Then, sometimes they're muted as on In the Blink of an Eye and No Saint No Sinner. Considering the breadth and depth of the guitarists' skill, I'm not getting this at all. Conversely, there are some impressive performances by individual members: most significant is Dieter Bernert's drum work on Temple of Stone and My Own Hell.Characteristic of a talented and proven band, Brainstorm's On the Spur of the Moment is consistent and entertaining material. Definitive, visionary or breaking new ground? Perhaps not. But fans of traditional melodic heavy and power metal should be pleased. Recommended." - Dangerdog.com
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  • "TAROT is not only a card game, but also a long time running Heavy Metal band from Finland. The band was founded in the early eighties (!) by the Hietala brothers, Marco and Zachary. The first album "Spell Of Iron" was finally released in 1986. Much later Marco became famous as a member of SINERGY and of course NIGHTWISH, but he never abandoned his "baby band“. From time to time with some breaks, for obvious reasons, TAROT have released great albums which have made them a great addition to the metal scene. In 2007 Tarot signed a contract with Nuclear Blast and released the highly anticipated album “Crows Fly Black”.. The first single “You” entered the Finish charts on position # 1. One Year later in 2008 after several tours they released their first Live DVD ever. “Live Undead Indeed” also entered the Finish DVD Charts on position # 1. Now in 2010, TAROT is back in business. The hairy dudes from the town of Kuopio, county of Savo, Finland have again come up with a bunch of songs, which you will be able to hear on their eighth studioalbum titled “Gravity Of Light”. Most of the demo work for this album was done in August and September 2009 by Marco Hietala, Zachary Hietala and Janne Tolsa, the main writers of the band. The actual recordings for the album started immediately after that in November 2009. Mixing has been done by Janne and Mikko Tegelman and the mastering by Mika Jussila at Finnvox studios in January and February 2010. The album feels like meeting an old friend. Some things are the same, but your friend has gained weight. He shows new scars, and tattoos. The beard is longer and he projects a meaner and faster temper. At the same time there´s still a big heart at the center. The blood might rush to your head when your friend takes you to a weightless sauna orbiting the sun. When you hear “Gravity Of Light” you will believe."
    $8.00