Showing posts from July, 2015

The Fierce And The Dead - Magnet EP

The armour-plated muscle-ripped superhero NoisyProgBastard crashes though the door of the sleazy North London music venue, and announces its collective presence. "I'm a cult, gotta get out of it, out of it" the riff seems to be hammering into our skulls as the bulging beast transforms before us into a tightly wound rock quartet of serious intent. Thrashing his guitar around like a mountain bear on cheap speed, Matt Stevens, whom it is rumoured comes from a place where they practice the Olde Religion, is a man possessed, and his musical cohorts are right there in the melee with him.

Opening track Magnet In Your Face is just that; any closer and you'd be swapping eyeballs and iron filings. At only one minute and forty one seconds long, it has the effect of a rabbit punch to the solar plexus. Based on a fantastically taut riff in the manner of Five Horse Johnson, Matt and fellow plank destroyer Steve Cleaton push their instruments to the limits of endurance in a fashion…

Van der Graaf Generator – After The Flood - At The BBC 1968-1977

There is one album that encapsulates the original era of what came to be known as progressive rock better than any other, and that album is Close to The Edge by Yes. The record is a flawless masterpiece, and transcends its genre to stand as one of the best albums of “popular” music made by anyone, ever. However, when it comes to true progression and a fearless desire to consistently push the envelope, there are really only two contenders from the top table of that golden age. One is King Crimson, and the other is Van der Graaf Generator, the latter here delighting us all with a definitive collection of sessions originally recorded for the BBC.

Mark Powell’s comprehensive essay in the sumptuous 24-page booklet tells you all you need to know about this unique band, right from their chaotically naïve beginnings, later becoming the reason for the formation of Charisma Records, as amazingly manager Tony Stratton-Smith couldn’t get any other label interested! The essay follows the group thro…

Light Coorporation - Chapter IV - Before The Murmur Of Silence

Polish band Light Coorporation (pronounced "corporation") formed in 2011 to experiment with progressive jazz-rock. Unsurprisingly given the title, this is the band's fourth album, released in 2014.

Recorded live in the studio, these eight instrumental compositions were all written by guitarist Mariusz Sobański. The focus is often on the trumpet and saxophone that between them often sound like a full brass and reeds section, which serves to give the feel of an avant big band a la Centipede. Opener New States Of Mind (Repetitive) introduces itself in typically strident fashion, and is soon underpinned by a low rumbling bass line marking the rhythm with serious intent, another feature of the record. The tune is a tight jam with an open and spacious atmosphere in the manner of a very heavy take on 80s Miles Davis.

An intriguing feature is that the rather tasteful cover booklet, designed by Tom Lietzau includes lyric poems for each of the eight tracks on the record, all unsung…