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Friday, Sep 13, 2013
Fans of expansive and triumphant arrangements, you know what to expect from Vivien Lalu -- meticulous progressive craftsmanship, all finished with a virtuoso panache.

Eight long years ago, fans of French metal maestro Vivien Lalu immersed themselves in the composer’s successful solo debut, Oniric Metal. The progressive prowess and collaborations therein drew hearty applause from prog-metal aficionados in Europe and the US. On 10 September, Sensory Records releases Lalu’s latest venture, Atomic Ark.


Composed entirely by Lalu, Atomic Ark sees the keyboard wizard joined by members of Dream Theater, Mekong Delta, Symphony X, and many other luminaries from the progressive rock and metal field for a 50-minute-plus jaunt of cinematic metal. The album is driven by Lalu’s sense of fine-tuned technicality and majestic flair. The acoustic gentility of “Mirror Prison” collides with the head-banging hostility of “War on Animals”; classic rock riffing plows into downtuned ominousness on “Greed”; and “Revelations” provides a 20-minute symphony of multi-instrumental soloing, choral vocals, and ethereality.


Fans of expansive and triumphant arrangements, you know what to expect—meticulous progressive craftsmanship, all finished with a virtuoso panache.


 


Tagged as: vivien lalu
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Wednesday, Sep 11, 2013
by PopMatters Staff
It's hard not to notice the resemblances between the rich textures that Pillars and Tongues conjure up and the lush, mystical soundscapes of Dead Can Dance.

It’s hard not to notice the resemblances between the rich textures that Pillars and Tongues conjure up and the lush, mystical soundscapes of Dead Can Dance, aided and abetted, in particular, by Mark Trecka’s placid baritone vocals. But what really brings the Dead Can Dance comparisons to mind on Pillars and Tongues’ upcoming album End-dances are its wide-open sonic palettes, which unfurl their complexities and intricacies when you let their contemplative, meditative qualities play out over time.


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Tuesday, Sep 10, 2013
Whatever "voodoo hillbilly punk-blues" might be, it's actually an apt description of what Left Lane Cruiser's Rock Them Back to Hell sounds like.

Known as Left Lane Cruiser, the duo of Freddy J IV and Brenn Beck defines its music as “voodoo hillbilly punk-blues”. Whatever that might be exactly, it’s actually a pretty apt description of the combination of thrashy, scuzzed-out guitar and trashy, bashed-up rhythms on Left Lane Cruiser’s latest outing, Rock Them Back to Hell. The new album is as resourceful as it is energetic, especially making an impression with found-sound percussion supplied by paint cans and trash cans. Wrap it all up in cover art by William Stout, known for his work for Return of the Living Dead and Pan’s Labyrinth, and the over-the-top tone and feel of Rock Them Back to Hell is more than complete.


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Monday, Sep 9, 2013
by PopMatters Staff
The Eurythmics' Dave Stewart returns September 30th with his latest solo album, Lucky Numbers, the third record released by Stewart in the last three years.

This time around the “Ringmaster General” leaves behind the Nashville studio of producer John McBride and decamps his whole crew to a boat in the South Pacific, where the album was recorded over 12 dreamy days. “I wanted to do something a little different this time, so I invited the band to join me on an adventure to the South Pacific,” says Stewart.“Where we could record with nobody else around, floating around on the sea. It was like parachuting into Oz. We were fish out of water. We were out 12 days, but we were actually only sober enough to record for three or four.”


Today we have the pleasure of premiering the lyric video for new album track, “Nashville Snow”, a hazy tune infused with delicious Americana tinges and a super mellow vibe. Stewart surrounds himself with hugely talented collaborators on Lucky Numbers and this song is no exception with Karen Elson filling out the tune with her beguiling vocals.



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Monday, Sep 9, 2013
“Bella Ciao” is the oft-interpreted rallying cry from the anti-Fascist Italian resistance during World War II, reimagined to fit an aesthetic that’s all the NYC experimental outfit’s own.

The title track off Barbez’s latest album, “Bella Ciao” is the oft-interpreted rallying cry from the anti-Fascist Italian resistance during World War II, reimagined to fit an aesthetic that’s all the NYC experimental outfit’s own. Featuring Faun Fables’ Dawn McCarthy on vocals, “Bella Ciao” is able to articulate the diverse musical sensibilities that inform Barbez’s hybrid, cutting-edge work, combining strains of Jewish and Eastern European folk musics, an avant taste for skewed tonalities, the improvisational interplay of jazz, and the urgent drive of rock ‘n’ roll.


Tagged as: barbez, premiere, tzadik
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