Identity (2LP Vinyl)

SKU: KAR046LP
Label:
Karisma Records
Category:
Progressive Rock
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180 gram double LP vinyl set of this debut release from this great Norwegian prog band.  This features a new analog mix for vinyl as well as some new modified artwork.

Airbag is a new young prog band from Norway. Their music has a dreamy quality that will have you floating in the clouds. If you are fan of Riverside's lighter moments you will spooge over this. Definite references to Radiohead and Porcupine Tree will spring to mind as you listen. The music never explodes - it takes the slow fire approach creating constant tension. Lots of beautiful melodies wafting through your skull from the first listen. Highly recommended. These guys could potentially break big.

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  • A tightly woven matrix of extreme progressive metal underscores a desolate vision of a future gone awry...Zero Hour are the cutting edge of intricate progressive metal. Their influences range from the dark brooding power of Fates Warning to the technicality of Spiral Architect. The band features twin brothers Jasun and Troy Tipton on guitars and bass, drummer Mike Guy, and vocalist Erik Rosvold. A self-financed first release by the band was produced by Dino Alden (Marty Friedman, Mordred, Imagika). With limited distribution the band was able to sell over 2,000 copies on their own all based on word of mouth via the Internet as well as fantastic reviews in major metal magazines around the world.Returning to the studio with Alden the band has now produced "The Towers Of Avarice", a conceptual work that conjures a bleak vision of the future. The story tells the tale of two societies one above ground obsessed with consumption and the restless slaves living underground that are under their control. The band has intensified their already intricate sound by eschewing longwinded solos in exchange for complexity and power. Guitar and bass interlock seamlessly only to be interrupted by a staccato assault of crushing guitar riffs and soaring vocals. Rosvold is a truly gifted singer, often compared to Ronnie James Dio and John Arch. He grabs the spotlight with his angst ridden vocals, conveying all the drama that unfolds in the tale. This truly is a future classic of complex progressive metal.The album features surrealist artwork and graphic design by Travis Smith.
    $13.00
  • Their first real prog effort. Killer keyboard excursions in an ELP vein.
    $12.00
  • This one has been out of print forever and has now been properly remastered by EMI. At this point the band experimented with a more direct sound bordering on metal at times. I always loved that great Rodney Matthews cover.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.
    $11.00
  • "Hard to believe it has been four years since the last Iron Savior record. In that time I almost thought we'd never hear anything from Piet and co again. Boy am I glad they're back, and with the Condition Red line-up to boot. While I felt Megatropolis was a slight musical misfire, The Landing sees the band firing on all cylinders again.It should be no surprise that this album sounds quite a bit like Condition Red in places, with a hefty kick of Unification and Battering Ram for good measure. This is pure unadulterated German power metal played by one of the granddaddies of the genre, Piet Sielck is the man, and he displays his mastery of this style all over The Landing. Kicking off with a mid-paced cruncher armed with sublime hooks, and a majestic chorus, "The Landing" is a great start to the show. However it is in "Starlight" that the album really kicks off. I was overcome with joy when I first heard this song. Iron Savior at their best: blazing riffs, double kicking, and a massive chorus; this track could have be long lost from the Unification recordings.Throughout The Landing Iron Savior continue to assert their authority; everything from production to performance is nothing short of excellent – which should be expected of these masters. The guitar tone is concrete middle ground between the more compressed tone of Battering Ram and the natural feel of Condition Red. They album ticks all the boxes that need ticking in an Iron Savior record, "March of Doom" nails the heavy power metal track, with badass riffs and the finest pre-chorus of the album. "Heavy Metal Never Dies" takes the "Warrior" approach and is a great fist pumper, and coupled with "R.U. Ready" tick of the worship of heavy metal approach. Finally we have the quality "Before the Pain" which ticks off the ballad.All in all I believe The Landing is a complete and utter success, vastly preferable to the latest releases from stalwarts Gamma Ray and Stormwarrior. Highly recommended to all power metal fans, this is without a doubt one of the finest releases this year. While it doesn't reinvent – or innovate for that matter, that isn't important as Iron Savior were never about that. Recommended." - Metal Crypt
    $15.00
  • The late Michael Hedges was one of the great visionary guitarists of our lifetimes. He used tapping techniques on acoustic guitar to create a wall of sound. He was influenced by John Fahey and Leo Kottke and made us all rethink what can possibly be done with an acoustic guitar.  Introspective but addictive.  If you have any interest in guitar you need to hear this album.
    $8.00
  • "Back in 2008, Arkan helped to expand the diversity of metal even further by including Arabic and oriental sounds in brutal death metal with the “Hilal” album. Although not without its flaws, the release showed that metal can’t be pegged down and all fans of the genre should learn to expect the unexpected. In the three year interim, Arkan has matured and progressed this burgeoning sub-genre of “oriental metal” to create an album that isn’t just a mashup of two diverse styles, but a complete package that will be hard to top in future releases.Like with its predecessor “Hilal” (reviewed here), the Arabic sounds and influences rarely detract from the heaviness on the album. Rather than being a primarily symphonic metal experience, “Salam” sticks fairly consistently to a heavy vibe. The first half of the disc tends to be more crushing than the second half, which has more instrumental interludes, but overall the album is constantly on a simmer getting ready to explode with death metal at any given moment.This time around the band also makes frequent use of clean female vocals for an added melodic element alongside the deep death growls, and Kobi Farhi of Orphaned Land even makes a guest appearance on the song “Deus Vult.” Besides simply changing up the vocal styles, the music itself is much more varied and willing to explore new territory than in the last release. Rather than being relentlessly brutal in some parts and then completely ethnic and melodic in others, the songs instead go for a measured and properly paced assault that blends the two. The tracks also have consistently more staying power this time around, with elements of other metal styles working their way into the guitar playing.The 37 second instrumental “Common Ground” is where the disc shifts into a more melodic focused atmosphere. It’s not clear if anything is supposed to be read into the length and title of the song, such as if the band is trying to say there’s not enough common ground or common ground is only a small step away from the various religions of the world. Overall the song titles and lyrics seem to head in a direction similar to Orphaned Land, touching on issues of how religions impact the world.For anyone who liked the idea of Orphaned Land but wanted a much stronger death metal presence, “Salam” is a must-hear album. The band’s second full-length outing is a fantastic blend of modern heavy death metal with traditional Middle Eastern sounds." - Metal Underground
    $7.00
  • Magnus Karlsson's name might not be that familiar to you but if you are a fan of melodic metal you probably own an album or two he was involved in.  The Swedish guitarist's original band was Last Tribe.  After a number of albums for Frontiers he was the man behind the curtain for the two Allen/Lande albums as well as a bunch of other projects for the label.  Ultimately he became a member of Primal Fear and toured with this.Freefall is his first solo album under his own name.  He plays all the instruments except drums which are handled by Danny Flores of Mind's Eye.  Calling in favors, Karlsson has enlisted a who's who of vocalists from the melodic metal realm: Russell Allen (Symphony X), Ralf Scheepers (Primal Fear), Tony Harnell (TNT), Rick Altzi (Masterplan), David Readman (PC69), Mark Boals (Malmsteen), Michael Andersson (Cloudscape), Rikard Bengsston (Last Tribe), and Herman Saming (A.C.T).  That's a lot of good pipes!
    $13.00
  • "Annysia is a Symphonic Power Metal band from Spain, led by lead vocalist, Rose Mack. The obligatory instrumental, The Essence Of A New Born Star is a well written one, that builds up tension in the beginning of the disc much like a movie soundtrack to an epic battle movie. The operatic stylings of Mack can be heard immediately over a harpischord-laden keyboard effect before the rest of the band kicks in. She definitely has a style of her own, and the music behind her is well played. The highest range of her vocals on this song, show her range, though I think an octave lower is more in her power range. The guitar solo on the other hand sounds out of place, but it may be the production of the song,. Nephilim starts out much in the same vein, though the vocals during the verses are a little more subdued and similar to Liv Kristine in Leave's Eyes. The growly/black metal vocals on this particular song don't do much for me here. The brief but arppegio-laden guitar solo is again well played, and a better fit here. Battle of Mystics is the first track I heard from the band, and honestly the vocal gymnastics in the beginning and during parts of the song, show Mack's talent, but they are done a little too much for my taste, though the song itself is very good. Actually musically this is probably my favorite track on the disc Demontia is a track I could not get into, but musically is not a bad song. Fairysins though, features Mack and a soft piano. Her vocals on this song shows her unique tone, and her wheelhouse when it comes to her range. This song is actually quite beautiful. The epic-ness of Valkyrie is not just in its almost nine minute length, but the music as well. Mack commands her range throughout the entire song, and the twin guitar lead melody is well played. I am not sure if I like the lead tone of the guitar that much, its a little fuzzy for my taste, but the musicianship is definitely there. The previously mentioned death/black metal vocals make an appearance here, and again does nothing for me except take away from Mack's solid performance.Again the fuzzy guitar tone comes back on the beginning of Redemption though when it meshes with the symphonic parts it does not sound as bad. Straying from her operatic range for most the song, Mack shows that she can again, subdue her range, even on a much faster song. The ability for her to sing like this, without her sounding like she is singing in a monotone is a compliment to her abilities. Lost Soul is another piano song, showing the sweeping vocals of Mack. The expression “Less is more,” best explains her vocals on this song, and it was definitely the right call. The instrumental of Captain's Song shows her bandmates definitely have talent themselves, and it is a pretty damn good instrumental. Another standout song is the mid paced, Pirates Of The Sea. The male operatic vocals are too low in the mix to be heard clear enough, though they are much better than the “Blackened” ones of earlier. Nivek is next, and is another epic song in its song structure. For the seven minutes it runs, it pretty much hits all the right marks. With headphones on though, Mack's vocals could have been produced a little better,and be heard a little louder. Much like the disc begins, it ends with an instrumental track, an outro.While the imperfections do come to head when you hear the disc as a whole, Annysia's debut is actually a well written, if only inconsistently produced disc. The disc does have its highs, with strong songwriting and Mack's powerhouse vocals. I do believe in some songs, the band is trying to be as epic as possibly when possibly a little more restrain could have been used. Again most of this criticism is personal opinion, and every listener will have their own opinion. As a whole, this is a great start for a new band, who is obviously full of talented musicians. Let us hope for a label to find the band, and for stronger production values next time." - Metal Review
    $13.00
  • I would have to guess (purely a guess) that this was the band's most successful album in terms of sales. It's the album that got me into their music. Fantastic orchestral metal loaded with awesome melodies and great playing. Simply a stunning album that should be in every progmetal collection. This is the remastered version that comes with 2 bonus tracks and new liner notes. Highest recommendation.
    $15.00
  • "Sometimes, a band faces some adversities that delay the chance to release its hard work to the public. Not many, anyway, can "boast" what progressive rock dinosaurs Spettri have experienced. Founded in the Florence of 1964, the band's self titled and concept debut album was recorded in a single take, in 1972. Sadly, the album was frozen due to the decaying of the desire for this kind of music. That was, until 2011. 40 years later, Black Widow Records gave new life to Spettri, and the band began touring to support the album.What came from it, was the desire to make new music. Flash forward to 2015, 2973 La Nemica dei Ricordi picks up right where Spettri ended. The debut told the story of a protagonist struggling to find an answer to wars and hatred by connecting to the afterlife... only to give in to madness due to the enigmatic replies of the dead. Now, 1001 years later, that same person is still wandering. His new journey, beautifully depicted on the cover artwork, begins with the encounter of a giant ghost ship. Sailing on, the protagonist's destination is nothing but his inner self.Such an outlandish story is accompanied by equally crazy sounding compositions. Heavy Black Sabbath-like riff driven guitar work, haunting Hammond organ lines and piano sections, triumphant saxophone incursions, choirs and fittingly rough vocals make the perfect complement to the band's horror-esque image. Lending a hand are also two special guests. Elisa Montaldo (Il Tempio delle Clessidre), often requested as a keyboardist, is presented here as the lead vocalist for the ballad "Il Delfino Bianco", while Stefano Corsi plays some Celtic harp and harmonica in "L'Approdo". In addition, the album flows excellently in its theatrical nature. Everything leads to 2973 feeling way shorter than its actual length of almost 50 minutes, gaining in replayability.It has to be noted that 2973 does not seem to be made with the objective of being as accessible as possible. The song structures are far from predictable, and the guitar work is far from flashy. Instead, the electric guitar, while not discarding emotional solos, is used mainly to create an atmospheric road of tight riffing, while sax -for which the band has a stand-alone member- and keys often function as the main attraction. Besides, while fitting, the main (really) rough vocals and accent may not appeal to everyone and it is easy to see how the understanding of the language is likely to be a key factor for their appreciation. What also hinders the album a bit is a sense of repetition in the middle, where the title track can sound a little too similar to the latter part of the previous "Onda Di Fuoco". Still, 2973 proves to be a solid and coherent listen from beginning to end, with the gentle sound of the waves opening and closing the journey.Physically speaking, save for the shift to a more progressive songwriting leaving the psychedelic influence (and more prominent guitar playing) behind, nothing has changed since the debut album. Literally, the band decided to use the same instruments used for Spettri when recording 2973, de facto making it sound like the direct continuation of the former. The main difference is the production, this time not as raw and definitely more polished. Everything has been made to sound like it comes from the first half of the 70s, using analogue technologies and so releasing a real AAA LP.Unluckily, the moment of glory for Spettri arrived late. Still, the band does not seem to be worried. As stated in an interview, they want to recover the time they lost and are already setting the foundations for 'Spettri 3', while touring to support 2973. All in all, this album is not 'only' another promising gem for Italian progressive rock in 2015, it is also a testament of how time cannot stop the passion for writing and playing your music, without jumping on trends." - Sputnikmusic.com
    $25.00
  • The Yes Album is the second in a series of remixed and expanded Yes albums.Presented in a mini vinyl replica gatefold card sleeve (with protective inner sleeves) with booklet featuring new sleeve notes by Sid Smith, along with rare photos and archive material, the album has been mixed for 5.1 Surround Sound from the original studio masters by Steven Wilson and is fully approved by Yes.The CD features a new stereo album mix by Steven Wilson, the studio version of Clap and an extended version of A Venture.The blu-ray features:- 5.1 PCM Surround Sound and High Resolution Stereo mixes (24bit 96khz).- the original album mix in a hi-res flat transfer from the original stereo master tape source (24bit/192khz).- a complete alternate album running order drawn from live tracks, singles edits & an extended mix.- exclusive instrumental versions of all new mixes in DTS-HD Master Audio stereo (24bit/96khz).- exclusive needle-drop of an original UK vinyl A1/B1 pressing transferred in 24bit/96khz audio.The ultimate way to enjoy the album that helped establish Yes's reputation as a creative force to be reckoned with.CD - New Stereo Mixes:1. Yours Is No Disgrace2. Clap3. Starship Trooper: Life Seeker / Disillusion / Wurm4. I've Seen All Good People: Your Move / All Good People5. A Venture6. Perpetual ChangeAdditional Tracks:7. Clap (Studio Version)8. A Venture (Extended)Blu-Ray (Region 0, NTSC):Presented in DTS-HD Master Audio- Album mixed in 5.1 Surround- New Album mix- Original Album mix (flat transfer)- New Album mix (instrumental version)- Alternate version of The Yes Album drawn from live tracks, singles edits & an extended mixPlus further audio extras some exclusive to the Blu-Ray edition.NTSC, all regions, LPCM playable in all Blu-Ray players & Blu-Ray drivesBlu-Ray - Full Track Listing:New Stereo Mixes 24/96 MLP Lossless:1. Yours Is No Disgrace2. Clap3. Starship Trooper: Life Seeker / Disillusion / Wurm4. I've Seen All Good People: Your Move / All Good People5. A Venture6. Perpetual ChangeSurround Mixes (24/96 MLP Lossless):1. Yours Is No Disgrace2. Clap3. Starship Trooper: Life Seeker / Disillusion / Wurm4. I've Seen All Good People: Your Move / All Good People5. A Venture6. Perpetual ChangeOriginal Stereo Mixes (Flat Transfer from original master 24/96 MLP Lossless):1. Yours Is No Disgrace2. Clap3. Starship Trooper: Life Seeker / Disillusion / Wurm4. I've Seen All Good People: Your Move / All Good People5. A Venture6. Perpetual ChangeAdditional Material:The Alternate Album :1. Yours Is No Disgrace (Live, London 1971)2. Clap (Studio Version)3. Starship Trooper (single edit)Life seeker4. I've Seen All Good People (Live, London 1971)5. A Venture (extended mix)6. Perpetual Change (Live, New Haven 1971)Blu-Ray Exclusive:Single versions, edits & live:1. Your Move - single version, stereo2. Clap - single version, mono3. America - Live, London 19714. It's Love - Live, London 19715. Your Move - single version, monoNew Stereo Instrumental Mixes (24/96 LPCM):1. Yours Is No Disgrace2. Clap3. Starship Trooper: Life Seeker / Disillusion / Wurm4. I've Seen All Good People: Your Move / All Good People5. A Venture6. Perpetual ChangeNeedle-drop (A1/B1 UK vinyl transfer 24/96 LPCM):Original stereo, archived master transfer (Flat Transfer 24/96 LPCM):1. Yours Is No Disgrace2. Clap3. Starship Trooper: Life Seeker / Disillusion / Wurm4. I've Seen All Good People: Your Move / All Good People5. A Venture6. Perpetual Change 
    $25.00
  • Standard edition comes (at the moment) with a slipcase "o" card wrapper."It’s been quite a past few years for the incredible Anathema. Honors have been bestowed upon them, they’ve released an instant classic album in “Weather Systems”, and last year they released one of the best live concert films I’ve ever seen, “Universal”. Anathema is on top of the world, and they are only getting bigger. With all of this on their shoulders, they approach the world once again with their new album, “Distant Satellites”, a fitting name for a massive album. Again, with all of their recent success creating huge expectations, can this band meet such critical reception? Needless to say, Vincent Cavanagh on vocals, Danny Cavanagh on guitar, Jamie Cavanagh on bass, John Douglas on percussion, Daniel Cardoso on drums, and Lee Douglas with her wonderful vocals were all up to the challenge.“Distant Satellites” is a very different album from “Weather Systems”, or anything else they’ve done, for that matter. It is different, yet somehow instantly familiar. It includes everything that makes them Anathema, but adds new and exciting elements to their already excellent formula. If you’ve never heard Anathema, their formula (in their last few albums, anyways) includes soaring guitars, amazingly catchy melodies, spiritual lyrics, and emotional flow both vocally and structurally. They are the masters of melody, and they remain complex and progressive even while being simple and accessible. They are truly masters of their craft.This new album, then, is no different in those terms. The melodies return in force, such as the serene beauty of “The Lost Song” parts 1-3. And, yet, there is something different here. The melodic lines are somewhat more complex, less in-your-face, and more organic. This especially shows in the song lengths, most of them being over five minutes. This allows for more growth and more progression. Indeed, then, the melodies on “Distant Satellites”, while not being as instantly lovable or recognizable, are certainly more difficult and possibly will have a longer “shelf life” in my mind. Yes, the orchestrations seem to be lower key, as well, allowing the vocalists to express themselves more personally then ever.There are other improvements, too. I feel that the musicianship is more fervent and on a higher plateau of difficulty than Anathema has tried. Drummer John Douglas, especially, plays amazingly well from start to finish, accenting the music with awesome pounding and fills. The rest of the band are at their peak, too, with Vincent and Lee being especially great with emotional and meaningful vocal performances.“Distant Satellites” is different in more meaningful ways, too. Utilizing post-rock/metal structures is nothing new for Anathema, but they really do perfect them here, as on “Dusk”, a dark, climactic song. Yet, there is a sense of continuity between tracks, too. This is obviously the case between the three parts of “The Lost Song”, but it’s also apparent throughout the album, as if Anathema is telling us a story, convincing us of our true selves and our connection with the universe and with each other.This album is wonderful in the first half, but my excitement reached new heights in the second half. Anathema has taken it upon themselves to change things up a bit. They wanted to progress their sound, but make it all seem so natural. So, in the second half, the album climaxes with one of the best songs, simply called “Anathema”. But then, we are thrown for a loop somewhat, as “You’re Not Alone” features a hefty portion of electronic vibe. It’s great, but the best is still to come.Next, “Firelight”, a darkly ethereal instrumental track that is completely electronic, is thrust upon us, and is followed up by what may possibly be the best song Anathema has ever produced, “Distant Satellites”. This track combines everything that has ever made Anathema great: soaring melodies, climactic structure, gentle spirituality, amazing vocals, and now an electronic beat that is both complex and catchy. Vibrant, mesmerizing, and pure, this track elates me every time I hear it. It takes this album, and my heart, to new heights. The album finishes with a gentle ballad that just seems so fitting, yet it still has the strong electronic influence.So, is “Distant Satellites” a winner? In every way! Is it their best album? I don’t know; it has the potential, but it might take time, just like “Weather Systems” did. What I can tell you is that this new album is more mature, more progressive, more interesting and eclectic, and less formulaic then anything Anathema has crafted yet. It does sacrifice some accessibility and some instant likability for these things, but I respect their decision massively, and I fully expect to see “Distant Satellites” at the tops of many lists at the end of 2014." - Progulator
    $9.00
  • 2005 deluxe remastered edition of the bands 1986 magnum opus, the last one to feature John Arch on vocals. This elaborate set features two cds and one live DVD. Disc One is the remastered version of the album. Disc Two features unreleased live and demo tracks. Disc Three is an NTSC Region 0 live DVD of a live gig from 1986. Mike Portnoy wrote the liner notes.
    $15.00