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October 2008 - Issue 72
Progressive Rock CD Reviews
Marvin Ayres - Eccentric Deliquescence
Review by Gary Hill
This is probably not an obvious choice for inclusion in progressive rock. The album is mostly ambient (but in terms of being non-melodic, not quiet) and strange.
Emily Bezar - Exchange
Review by Gary Hill
This is an insidious CD. On first listen it seems, “okay,” but it gets under your skin. Each subsequent listening has you further under its spell until you are really a big fan.
Edgar Broughton Band - At Rockpalast
Review by Gary Hill
I originally had this planned for the “non-prog” section of Music Street Journal. The more I listen to it, though, the more I think it fits into prog.
Dave Cousins - & The Blue Angel Orchestra - Boy in the Sailor Suit
Review by Gary Hill
I know most people think of the Strawbs as a progressive rock band. Surely some of their music is prog.
Dave Corp - The Sweet Life
Review by Gary Hill
This CD is a cool one. It combines jazz and prog rock stylings into a blend that’s not entirely new, but yet not really like anything else out there.
Dream Aria - Transcend
Review by Gary Hill
When I reviewed this group’s last disc I was impressed. It was a strong album. The thing is, this new one blows that one completely out of the water.
Epica - The Divine Conspiracy
Review by Gary Hill
As with the previous CD by Epica reviewed here, I’m putting this into the progressive rock section.
The Guy - Only Human
Review by Gary Hill
“The Guy” is “Christopher Shreiner. He’s joined on this CD by David Livolsi on bass, Tyger MacNeal on drums and Chris Coogan on keyboards (on two tracks).
Don 'Sugar Cane' Harris - Sugar Cane's Got The Blues
Review by Julie Knispel
Frank Zappa, John Mayall, John Lee Hooker, Little Richard...these are just a few of the varied artists who helped bring Don "Sugar Cane" Harris's violin skills the attention they deserve.
Inca Maya - Inca Maya
Review by Gary Hill
This might not be the most obvious choice for inclusion in the progressive rock section of Music Street Journal. The truth is perhaps half of the CD I really consider pure progressive rock.
Jasper van't Hof's Pork Pie - Transitory
Review by Julie Knispel
Fusion is perhaps progressive rock's more white collar cousin.  Arising from the jazz scene at the tail end of the 1960's, fusion co-opted the energy and electricity and volume of rock and roll and added it to an already diverse set of influences and styles. 
Barry Keenan - My Mind
Review by Gary Hill
I know a lot of people consider this CD to be pop. I’d have to say that to my ear it falls closer to music of bands like Porcupine Tree.
The Moody Blues - Live at the Isle of Wight Festival 1970
Review by Gary Hill
The Isle of Wight Festival in 1970 saw the Moody Blues play in front of half a million people. I’m sure many people then (as today, even) thought of the Moody Blues as a strictly studio band.
Persephone's Dream - Pyre of Dreams
Review by Gary Hill
Great progressive rock always comes with a learning curve. Well, I haven’t decided yet if this is great progressive rock, but it’s darn good and comes with a steep learning curve.
Phideaux - 313
Review by Gary Hill
The more I hear from Phideaux the more I’m convinced they are one of the coolest bands around. I keep digging back into their older material here and am never disappointed.
The Pineapple Thief - Tightly Unwound
Review by Gary Hill
I’ve been hearing a lot about this band for a few years – mostly rave reviews, but I hadn’t actually heard them until now. Frankly, I was a little disappointed.
Plastic Crimewave Sound - No Wonderland
Review by Gary Hill
I’ve heard these guys referred to as punk rock. At times you can buy that one.
Nic Potter - Nic Potter & Friends – Live in Italy
Review by Bruce Stringer
The triumphant return of ex-Van Der Graaf Generator bass man Nic Potter contains an intriguing mixture of songs old and not so old in celebratory performances with Italian musicians on their home turf.
Random Touch - Duologue
Review by Gary Hill
This is not my normal type of music. This freeform RIO type of stuff often turns me off. There are moments on this disc where I feel that way, but much of this works quite well.
The Residents - Present The Bunny Boy
Review by Gary Hill
I know a lot of people are probably going to quibble with my putting The Residents in under progressive rock. I have to say their form of weirdness really isn’t far from RIO (Rock In Opposition).
Uli Jon Roth - Under A Dark Sky
Review by Gary Hill
I have always preferred the Uli Jon Roth period of Scorpions music to the stuff they put out afterwards. For those who don’t remember, Roth supplied the guitar (and a lot of the songwriting) to the early period of that band.
ScienceNV - Really Loud Noises
Review by Gary Hill
A lot of times instrumental CD’s can be boring. That’s not the case with this one.
Billy Sherwood - At the Speed of Life...
Review by Gary Hill
Billy Sherwood has released this solo album and it is truly a solo work. He wrote all the songs and performs every bit of music on the disc.
The Strawbs - Live At Nearfest 2004
Review by Gary Hill
This live show from prog rock legends The Strawbs has just been released on CD. Much of the disc seems to be more along the lines of folk music, but then again, The Strawbs had a definite folk side to them.
Robin Taylor - Isle of Black
Review by Gary Hill
Robin Taylor has given us quite a cool album here. At times on other releases his music has moved too far towards freeform weirdness for the tastes of this reviewer.
UK - Danger Money
Review by Bruce Stringer
This being the only studio album from the scaled down, three-piece lineup of Eddie Jobson, John Wetton and Zappa alumni Terry Bozzio, there is so much to live up to and the obvious question is: does it?
UK - Live In Boston
Review by Bruce Stringer
As one of the hardest working live acts in its day, it comes as no surprise that there were a number of radio show broadcasts made during UK’s short-lived existence. 
Van der Graaf Generator - 1 Prophesy Disaster
Review by Bruce Stringer
With a title taken from the epic “A Plague Of Lighthouse Keepers,” this compilation was obviously the product of some well researched members of Virgin Records back in the early 1990s.
Metal/Prog Metal CD Reviews
Absolution - The Revelation Diaries
Review by Travis Jensen
With the changing direction of the music industry today, you are almost always faced with dilemmas of what to do when it comes to selecting music; online downloads, MP3’s, IPOD’s, etc. have literally turned purchasing music upside down, and with more negative effects to those who have to make a living at it.
Beyond The Void - Gloom Is A Trip For Two
Review by Gary Hill
Let’s just start this off by saying that title alone earns this group bonus points. You just can’t get much better than that.
Black Sabbath - The Rules of Hell
Review by Rick Damigella
Like the opening of an arcane tome of eldritch and forbidden knowledge, Black Sabbath’s The Rules of Hell have been put forth. After a seeming eternity of a wait, every album from the Ronnie James Dio-era of Black Sabbath have finally been given a proper re-mastering and re-release in this must have box set.
The Chair - The Chair
Review by Gary Hill
Transubstans Records has a proven track record of bringing out new bands who have their musical hearts rooted firmly in classic rock. Well, The Chair are definitely one of those bands.
Iced Earth - The Crucible Of Man (Something Wicked Part II)
Review by Gary Hill
This disc is part two of the “Something Wicked” series. It’s a good disc that finds the band without Tim “Ripper” Owens.
Jennie Tebler´s Out of Oblivion - Till Death Tear Us Part
Review by Gary Hill
Do you remember when female fronted heavy metal bands were rare? Well, thanks to the success of bands like Lacuna Coil and the more mainstream (rap metal, even) Evanescence it seems to be morphing into a cliché.
Metal Church - This Present Wasteland
Review by Gary Hill
I can remember getting into this band in the early days. I really liked their first couple of albums but kind of lost track of them after that.
Motörhead - Motorizer
Review by Gary Hill
I’ve always loved Motorhead. You know, they might not be the most original band, but there’s just something about them
Poison - Seven Days Live
Review by Gary Hill
Times change. When Poison first came around I couldn’t take them seriously. To me they were the worst of the glam metal bands.
Non-Prog CD Reviews
Tori Amos - Live At Montreux 1991-1992
Review by Gary Hill
The companion to the DVD, this CD represents Tori Amos’ two appearances at the Montreux Jazz Festival. The first set of songs are from 1991, before her debut album was released.
Babylon Mystery Orchestra - Axis of Evil
Review by Gary Hill
This is really an interesting CD. The musical blend of dark gothic textures and metallic elements alongside some progressive rock sounds is one that works quite well.
The Bathtub Sophist - Music From An L-Shaped Room CD / EP
Review by Bruce Stringer
New Zealander, Arron Stewart (aka The Bathtub Sophist), has produced an EP of interesting electro-synthetic industrial grooves and harder edged funk / metal with repetitive loops and samples.
Olivia d'Abo - Not TV
Review by Gary Hill
When I first got this CD I remembered that Olivia d’Abo was, in addition to being a musician, an actress. I didn’t remember on what TV shows and movies.
Ian Gillan - Live in Anaheim
Review by Rick Damigella
Just two days shy of exactly two years to the day of this writing, I had sat down to write my twin reviews of Ian Gillan’s solo tour stops in Los Angeles and Anaheim, California.
The Lizards - Archeology
Review by Gary Hill
The whole concept of doing an album of covers seems to be pretty popular these days.  There's one superior thing about this one, though.
Mike Mangione - Tenebrae
Review by Gary Hill
Mike Mangione’s music falls into the “singer songwriter” category that has been so popular over the last ten years or so – not necessarily in terms of radio airplay or sales, but in terms of artists performing in that genre. His music is good.
The Nutley Brass - The Misfits Meet The Nutley Brass - Fiend Club Lounge
Review by Eric Meli
First let me say that this is not a Misfits CD. It's a tribute album by The Nutley Brass (which is the creation of Sam Elwitt) who have done other tributes of bands like the Ramones.
Todd Rundgren - Arena
Review by Gary Hill
For my money the two greatest songwriters of the twentieth century are Todd Rundgren and Prince.
Ringo Starr - Liverpool 8
Review by Michael Bader
Ringo Starr released his fifteenth solo album on Capitol Records in February 2008 which was aptly named after his home town and zip code.  This album is very solid and flows nicely from cover to cover.
Sugarland - Love On The Inside (Deluxe Fan Edition)
Review by Gary Hill
Those who read a lot of Music Street Journal articles probably know that country isn’t my first choice for musical genres.
Treologic - Colabo
Review by Eric Meli
I’ve never really listened to a lot of rap. This CD is a good one, though and I like it a lot.
Uriah Heep - Wake The Sleeper
Review by Gary Hill
It has to be tough to be a band like Uriah Heep. I mean, on the one hand you’ve got this catalog of classic material to which everyone will hold all your create as a standard.
DVD/Video Reviews
Marc Almond - Live at Lokerse Feesten 2000 DVD
Review by Gary Hill
"So, who is Marc Almond?" you ask? He was the  lead singer of Soft Cell, but he’s had a solo career since then.
Tori Amos - Live at Montreux 1991 - 1992 DVD
Review by Gary Hill
I’ve always been a huge fan of Tori Amos from the day I first heard her when her debut disc was released. There is something about both her lyrical and musical presentation that is both beautiful and jarring, catchy and quirky.
George Benson - Absolutely Live DVD
Review by Gary Hill
I’ve chatted with some jazz purists who really don’t think highly of George Benson, chalking him up as pop leaning soft jazz. I can see their point to a degree, but I think they are really missing out.
Joe Cocker - Cry Me A River DVD
Review by Gary Hill
If you are not a hardcore fan of Joe Cocker, it’s easy to think of him as the caricature portrayed by John Belushi on “Saturday Night Live.” This DVD shows that there is a lot more to the man than that.
Neil Diamond - Thank You Australia Concert: Live 1976 DVD
Review by Josh Turner
It’s not often I get to sound off on a living legend. The title of this exquisite parcel says it all in a simple disclaimer: “Live 1976. For years he has mesmerized fans. Decades later, the metronome is still ticking with critically-acclaimed music consecrated in his latest album, Home Before Dark.”
Earth Wind and Fire - Live in Japan DVD
Review by Gary Hill
This new DVD from Earth Wind and Fire captures the band in a 1990 performance. It was a time where the band were trying to merge their classic sound with more modern R & B and hip hop.
The Groundhogs - Live at the Astoria DVD
Review by Gary Hill
I’d never heard of these guys, but apparently they have a rather important place in British blues history. They were the backing band for such blues luminaries as John Lee Hooker when the blues legends toured the UK.
Darren Hayes - The Time Machine Tour DVD
Review by Gary Hill
Do you remember the days when most concert were huge productions with graphics on video screens and the like? Well, then this DVD should be a real flashback for you.
Kraftwerk - Kraftwerk And The Electronic Revolution DVD
Review by Gary Hill
This is a great documentary. For my money it’s one of the best I’ve seen in a while.
Jonny Lang - Live at Montreux 1999 DVD
Review by Gary Hill
The Montreux Jazz Festival is a prestigious event. Although of late they seem to have forgotten the “jazz” part of the name, it’s truly an honor to be invited to play.
Marillion - From Stoke Row To Ipanema DVD
Review by Greg Olma
This 2 DVD package is set in the time when Steve Hogarth took over the vocals from Fish.  The first disc is kind of the bonus  as it features items usually found at the end of a DVD or as the extra disc.
Marillion - Recital Of The Script
Review by Greg Olma
In the early 80's, when I was a young lad, my life revolved around the music coming out of Europe.  I was totally immersed into the NWOBHM and my trusty friend Kerrang magazine kept me up to date with all the new bands.
Marillion - Somewhere in London DVD
Review by Gary Hill
I’ve never seen Marillion live. I only recently got to see Fish in concert.
Marillion - The EMI Singles Collection DVD
Review by Greg Olma
I had no idea that Marillion had this many videos.  I'm sure that many of these were never shown on MTV so I guess I can be a bit forgiven for being ignorant of these little video treasures.
John Mayall - John Mayall - John Mayall's Bluesbreakers: Live At Iowa State University DVD
Review by Gary Hill
In so many ways John Mayall has embodied the British blues movement.
Cat Stevens - Tea For The Tillerman Live DVD
Review by Gary Hill
Fans of Cat Stevens will treasure his music. Certainly the Tea For the Tillerman album was one of his best known and most beloved. This concert from 1971 documents the tour for that album.
Art Tatum - The Art of Jazz Piano DVD
Review by Gary Hill
I have to admit, while I’ve liked jazz for a long time, I’m certainly not as well versed in the history and  musical geniuses of the genre as I would like to be. So
Various Artists - Bang Your Head 2007 DVD
Review by Gary Hill
I have to admit that sometimes I get put off by a lot of modern metal festivals. I’m not a big fan of growling death vocals (there are some I can deal with, but few) or other forms of extreme voice tactics.
Various Artists - Jamaican Gold DVD
Review by Gary Hill
When you watch this film it would be easy to think that it takes place in Jamaica. The truth is, it doesn’t.
Various Artists - Sixteen Days in China DVD
Review by Gary Hill
This is one of the coolest music documentaries I’ve ever seen. I’d highly recommend this for anyone who has a quest for new understandings and cultural conceptualizations – oh, and a love of music wouldn’t hurt.
Johnny Guitar Watson - Live in Concert DVD
Review by Gary Hill
I had heard of Johnny Guitar Watson, but as a blues artist. Well, as this DVD attests that was only part of the picture.
Yes - The New Director’s Cut DVD
Review by Gary Hill
In some ways you can say, “we’ve seen it before.” Of course, isn’t that par for the course whenever you see “Director’s Cut” anywhere in the title or subtitle of a DVD?
Interviews
Aziola Cry
Interview by Julie Knispel
Interview with Jason Blake of Aziola Cry, from 2008
Blue Öyster Cult
Interview by Gary Hill
Interview with Eric Bloom of Blue Oyster Cult from 2008

Audio of this interview is available in our members area.
Equilibrium
Interview by Mike Korn
Interview with Helge Stang of Equilibrium From 2008
Nic Potter
Interview by Bruce Stringer
Interview with Nic Potter From 2008
Concert Reviews
Blue Öyster Cult - Live In Rockford, IL, August 2008
Review by Gary Hill
Many more pics from this show are available in our members area
The Flower Kings - Live in Chicago, IL, August, 2008
Review by Josh Turner
I had twisted my ankle earlier in the week and was experiencing heat exhaustion upon my arrival. It was an unusually bad day for me. Yet, everything with fine with the universe once The Flower Kings took the stage.
Heaven and Hell - Live at Tinley Park, IL, August, 2008
Review by Mike Korn
Many more pics from this show are available in our members area.
Judas Priest - Live In Tinley Park, IL August 2008
Review by Mike Korn
Lots more pics from this concert are available in our members area.
Neal Morse - Live in Los Angeles, CA September, 2008
Review by Michael Bader
Having not followed Neal Morse’s post Spock’s Beard and TransAtlantic career, you could imagine my surprise when I learned that Neal Morse has redirected his amazing musical talents towards promoting God’s word, “Prog Style.”
Motörhead - Live in Tinley Park, IL, August 2008
Review by Mike Korn
Many more pics from this show are available in two galleries in our members area.
Nightwish - Live In Los Angeles, September 2008
Review by Rick Damigella
Finland’s champions of symphonic progressive metal stormed through Los Angeles this month, putting on a spectacular show in a classic venue. The Wiltern Theater was packed on a warm September Saturday night with one of the most eclectic and friendly crowds I have ever had the pleasure of sharing a concert experience with.
Scorpions - Live In Chicago, IL August 2008
Review by Greg Olma
More pics from this concert are available in our members' area.

The Scorpions made a stop in Chicago (August 10th to be exact) on their relatively short Humanity-Hour 1 U.S. tour.
Ringo Starr - Live in Los Angeles, August, 2008
Review by Michael Bader

More pics from this concert are available in our members' area.

Critics refer to him as the “luckiest man in the world.”

Styx - Live in Rockford, IL, August, 2008
Review by Gary Hill
Many more pics from this show are in our members' area
Testament - Live inTinley Park, IL, August, 2008
Review by Mike Korn
Many more pics from this show are available in two galleries in our members area.
 
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