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Tag Archive: Dream Theater


Stimpy Lockjaw – Stimpy Lockjaw

stimpy lockjaw

Jazz and fusion are no strangers to the world of metal. From Dream Theater to Cynic to Animals as Leaders and well beyond, jazz music’s emphasis on technicality, compositional depth, and an ongoing exploration of sound and form have meshed easily with many parts of the metal spectrum. What is less common to see are bands that start from a place that is truly entrenched in the world of classic jazz fusion and filtered through the lens of heavier acts and influences. This is the place in which Stimpy Lockjaw exist. Forged from members of another jazzy prog metal entity, Ever Forthright (specifically guitarist Nicholas Llerandi and keyboardist Kevin Theodore), Stimpy Lockjaw seek to double down on the genre-bending, turn-on-a-dime-style technicality and composition and turn it into a massive, earth-destroying fusion juggernaut. And boy what a juggernaut it is.

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Distorted Harmony – Chain Reaction

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Sounding modern is a double edged sword at times. Fans often clamor for rawer production, even in genres where such an expectation makes no sense. In addition, and perhaps even more so, the danger of sounding the same as a thousand different bands out there is very real. It takes a certain security in your own sound to come out of the process sounding unique. Distorted Harmony, an Israeli progressive metal band that’s been making a name for themselves in international arenas, exhibit such a security in their new release, Chain Reaction. It’s an album with a direction and a purpose and thus ends up sounding interesting and cohesive.

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Prog 100

I’m sick and tired of all these “Best ____ Albums Of All Time”. They’re always voted on by staff, and never even consider the popular opinions of their readers, who mostly disagree. It’s like reading Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums list and seeing the top ten albums consist of 8 Beatles and 2 Bob Dylan albums. It’s stupid, and quite frankly keeps me from ever subscribing to their magazines. However, PROG Magazine are deciding to do something different.

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SERDCE – Timelessness

serdce

Calling albums weird is usually bad practice. We operate within a genre that prides itself on being strange, even if many bands don’t actually deliver on the promise. However, avoiding the word when discussing SERDCE‘s fourth album, Timelessness, is impossible. That is because weird is not just an adjective for this band or a gimmick but a true commitment to exploring different paths, inroads and downright crazy intersections in the map of modern metal. Blending astoundingly touching vocals, brutal death metal instrumentals and jazz sinews, Timelessness is an album as equally rewarding as it is demanding.

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Dream Theater are living legends. The group changed the face of metal and influenced a legion of bands in progressive and extreme metal circles whether it be in epic puzzling song structures, technically-minded mathematical drumming, or guitar virtuosity. Nearly thirty years since their inception, the band are still wowing audiences the world over as a celebrated live act. Photographer Maclyn Bean attended their recent stop in Philadelphia at Tower Theater, and you can view the photos below.

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A Sense of Gravity – Travail

A-Sense-of-Gravity-TravailA Sense of Gravity

Travail

01. Wraith
02. Stormborn
03. Breakthrough
04. Answers Lost
05. Trichotillomania
06. Harbinger
07. Above the Horizon
08. Ration Reality
09. Weaving Memories
10. Spectre

[2/21/2014]
[Self Release]

Sometimes, you need to chase down your own name. Innovators become bogged down in their own sound, eventually becoming iterations of themselves. Sometimes, a fresh new voice is needed to break the patterns that former radicals have grown comfortable with. This is what A Sense of Gravity bring to the table. Their clean-slate name allows them to bring progressive metal something it has craved for years: organic, dynamic sound that simply flows from place to place. Travail sounds like a living thing: birthed in one sitting and obedient to its own internal laws and patterns.

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Joey Jordison

Last month’s shocking news that Slipknot have parted ways with long-time drummer Joey Jordison left many of us dumbstruck and wondering WHY. The group have been dead silent on the matter, probably for legal reasons. Finally, with the new year came some new illumination on the matter, when Joey Jordison took to Facebook to clear some things up, yet making the situation that much more baffling.

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caligulas horseCaligula’s Horse

The Tide, The Thief, & River’s End

 

01. A Gift To Afterthought
02. Water’s Edge
03. Atlas
04. Into The White
05. Old Cracks In New Earth
06. Dark Hair Down
07. Thief
08. All Is Quiet By The Wall

[10/13/13]
[Welkin Entertainment]

Great records are the standard these days, it’s hard to be disappointed a lot of the time when the average level of competency is so high, so it takes something else to push a record from ‘great’ to ‘an absolute must-have’. And sometimes it’s the records that come completely out of nowhere to blindside you that are the most memorable. Caligula’s Horse may not be the most well-known name in the more progressive circles, but if The Tide, The Thief & River’s End is anything to go by, then Australia has yet another name to add to the ever growing list of formidable players.

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dream theater - dream theater

You know, I’ve never been that big of a Dream Theater fan, but their importance is undeniable. They’ve influenced and shaped a generation of musicians, and their touch turned Between the Buried and Me from a proto-deathcore group to a fully fledged prog act. Dream Theater are the biggest names in progressive rock and metal for a reason.

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dream theater - dream theater

Typically, once the PR hype machine is in full swing, you’ll catch songs from a new album popping up across a few sites. Metalsucks, Pitchfork, NPR, Revolver, Decibel, and others are your typical go-to sites for exclusives, as they’re tried and true avenues where new and old fans fans alike regularly flock to consume new music. Very rarely will a metal group sway outside of sites with a metal-centric theme. But then again, most bands aren’t Dream Theater. The godfathers of modern prog have decided to debut their new song ‘The Enemy Inside’ on USA Today, which is a headscratcher, but there you go.

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