So the other day, Spotify suggested that I listen to the song “Reflective” from the album Sounds of Innocence by Kiko Loureiro. Since the name looked interesting and he appeared to be a guitarist I downloaded the album onto the iPhone and it became the soundtrack for my ride to the Motor Vehicle Inspection Station. I discovered that Kiko is a very, very talented progressive rock guitarist and a member of the Progressive Metal band Angra. So after listening to Loureiro’s solo album, I downloaded Angra’s latest release Aqua and gave it a listen! Both of the albums are very good, but I think I prefer Aqua. Sometimes solo prog rock guitar albums seem a little boring to me. So here’s what I discovered about Angra.
Today the Safari returned to Finland and explored the music of Cardiant a power metal band that was formed in the city Hämeenlinna by Antti Hänninen and Dave Alberti in 2000. Today I listened to Verge the third album from the band. The line-up of the band has changed drastically from the first album when the band didn’t have a lead singer and was forced to use a session singer. This resulted in the album Midday Moon only being released on Japan!
Current band members bassist Mikko Mänttäri, keyboadist Marko Lindroos, and vocalist Erik Karhatsu joined Antti in a revamped by in 2008. Prior to being chosen as the bands lead vocalist, Karhatsu had appeared on Finnish Idol!
As I listened to Psykerion the second album from Thought Chamber, I came to the realization that maybe the best way to listen to Thought Chamber is with headphones on, because with headphones on you can catch all of the intricacies of their music!. I am listening to the track “Transcend” and the music is coming at me from each side,guitars in the left ear, drums in the center, it’s great!
Thought Chamber is a progressive metal group from the US founded by guitarist Michael Harris. I discovered the band last year prior to the release of Psykerion, so I listened to their first release Angular Perceptions, which was released in 2007. At that time, the band consisted of Harris on guitars, keyboards and vocals, Ted Leonard (Enchant and as my son Nick pointed out to me, the new lead singer of Spock’s Beard). Rob Stankiewicz – drums, Bobby Williamson – keyboards, and Derek Blakley – bass. Harris said this about his initial vision for Thought Chamber….
The other day I was surfing MOG looking artists who are like ones that I like and I came across Anthriel and their 2010 release The Pathway. I gave it a 30 second test and I liked what I heard so it went on the iPhone. This morning it was part of the soundtrack playing while I did some work around the house. What a fine progressive metal album this is, with a little bit of everything – there’s some hard-driving guitar work from Timo Niemsto, drumming from Jari Kuokkanen. which often flows into some melodic keyboard work from Antti Hakulinen.These guys are the trio that founded the band in 2004. In 2008 lead singer Simo Silvan joined the band and last but not least there’s the bass player Klaus Wirzenius
Back in October I came across the band Serenity, I listened to and really like their current release War of Ages. Yesterday I thought about the band and went back in time and listened to their 2011 release Death & Legacy and I liked that album just as much as War of Ages, maybe more!! As I am writing this I just put on their 2008 release Fallen Angel.…. sounds just as good. Hard driving metal, good vocals, good guitar, etc… Like I do always when I’m listening to a band like this, I went to Prog Archives to see what they say about the band and the albums. What i found is that the band is not included in the archives because their music is not prog enough! I’ve heard several bands that are included in the Archives and these guys don’t sound any different to this newbies ears!! Anyway here’s what I had written before about the band…..First from Wikipedia some background about Serenity:
One of the albums that has been on the iPhone for a while now is Spheric Universe Experience‘s 2005 debut album Mental Torments. I had started my explorations of the band’s music with their 2012 release New Ere and after the fist listen I wasn’t quite sold on the band. So I went back and listened to Mental Torments, which was their highest rated album at the Prog Archives. I liked that album a lot more. Now I need to explore the two albums released in between number one and number four to know if I’m completely sold on the band!
Tonight, I re-explored the album Rubidium from Maschine. I say re-explored because I had listened to the album for the first time several months ago and really enjoyed it. The band hails from the United Kingdom and is labeled at Prog Archives as progressive metal. Personally, I don’t think that they are as heavy as many of the progressive metal bands I’ve listened to. The band’s name seems to have been derived from the founder of the band vocalist and guitarist Luke Machin. Machin who had played with both Tangent and It Bits formed the band in at the Brighton Institute of Modern Music in 2008. The line-up for the band includes: Elliot Fuller on guitar, Dan Mash on bass, James Stewart on drums and Georgia Lewis on keyboards.
So this evening I was searching for some new prog rock, and I went to New Prog Rock Releases and saw that an Italian Jazz-Rock, fusion band named Agora released their new album Ichinen on Monday of this week. So I traveled over to MOG to see if I could find it I found Agora and there was no Ichinen album. I did see however a 2011 release Regresa Al Vértigo. So I continued to search for some information on the band while I was listening. I went to the Prog Archives where I read about Agora….
The Safari did not really travel far today folks, just across the Delaware River to the Port Richmond area of Philadelphia, the city that the new progressive metal band Tungsten calls home! Their debut album The Reservoir was released today, Jan 14th. Tungsten is a progressive metal band whose signature sound according to their biography at their website is.
….dark, innovative, and creative, but still bursting at the seams with classic metal attitude that makes you want to pump your fist in the air. Drawing on influences both timeless (Iron Maiden, Rush, Pink Floyd) and modern (Opeth, Mastodon),
So today so far has been a strange musical day. It started when I was thinking about Estonia! Ok so why was I thinking about Estonia? The reason was that yesterday was the birthday of Ingrid Hagel who according to All About Jazz is an:
Estonian violinist and singer, currently living in Copenhagen/Denmark. An instrumentalist, as well a vocalist, Ingrid Hagel expresses her musical ideas through her original compositions. Her themes and melodic violin solos are full of vigorous energy and are talking the language of the heart and her life in different cultures.