The Tangent is one of my favourite progressive rock groups, or, in this case, supergroup. Admittedly, their delivery is far from being consistent, and ranges from the tremendous Not as Good as the Book (2008) and Le sacre du travail (2013) to the very lacklustre Comm (2011) and A Spark in the Aether (2015). So, it’s always a case of cautious excitement whenever Andy Tillison’s Canterbury-inspired prog rock outfit announces something new. Here comes ‘A Few Steps down the Wrong Road’, a 19-minute epic that was released in August of last year, in anticipation of the band’s upcoming album, The Slow Rust of Forgotten Machinery. Continue reading
Red Seas Fire just released ‘Stuck’, a new single off of their upcoming release and debut album. The formation surprised the djent world, back in 2011, with their self-titled debut EP. So much so that their main writer and lead guitarist, Adam Getgood, better known as ‘Nolly’, was hired by Periphery to play bass for their live shows, and was later a full member of the band. Continue reading
Not so long ago, The Neal Morse Band released ‘Long Day/Overture’ as a teaser for their upcoming album, The Similitude of a Dream, and we thought it wasn’t that bad. This week, the band released ‘City of Destruction’, along with a music video, which you can watch above.
As per the title and images from the video shared on Facebook, I was skeptical and feared the usual ‘single’ track. Obviously, my fears became flesh when I listened to the song. It’s the same, lame rock track with barely a hint of prog in it. This is part of the marketing scheme of every big prog album, nowadays it seems. Bands will promote their most generic, bland, and tasteless piece. It’s the lowest common denominator strategy, and it sucks for prog fans.
‘City of Delusions’ is probably an important chapter in The Similitude of a Dream, if it’s a conceptual double album, but, on its own, it’s nothing more than a distasteful ‘dad prog’ anthem. Let’s hope I am right and this is actually the least interesting track on the album.
Mike Portnoy often said, on social media, that what we now know as The Similitude of a Dream – The Neal Morse Band’s next double concept album -, is the best thing he’s ever played on, and is unlike anything they have ever done before. I’m paraphrasing, but he did succeed in raising the expectations of a lot of people, myself included. We all know Neal Morse to be a stellar composer, and a great multi-instrumentalist and singer, but his compositions can feel a bit formulaic at times. The most striking example might be the twin sisters on Transatlantic’s Bridge across Forever, namely “Duel with the Devil” and “Stranger in Your Soul”. The two songs share the same length, and go through similar phases in their development. Now, maybe that was the whole concept behind the album, but you can definitely see strong similarities in other works, such as Sola Scriptura and The Whirlwind. Once again, all these albums and songs I mentioned are some of my favourites, but you just know they came from the same guy. Continue reading
After much anticipation and expectation following the announcement of Opeth’s twelfth studio album, the band decided to quell our eagerness with the title track for Sorceress.
It all starts with a melody in objectively inferior 4/4, but it compensates by including a swing feel and being in Messiaen’s second mode of limited transposition. This gives it a somewhat jazzy feel, especially with the odd distortion on guitar or keyboard sound, and a certain ambiguity as to what the tonal centre is, which is great. It goes a lot of places, but ultimately goes nowhere, as everything it tried to create crumbles once the first actual riff begins, which is a mere chord-chug riff. Continue reading