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October 2022 - Issue 156
Progressive Rock CD Reviews
Jon Anderson - Angels Embrace
Review by Gary Hill
This 1995 release is an unusual one in Jon Anderson's solo catalog. Then again, he has never been one to shy away from stretching beyond expectations.
Jon Anderson - Some Are Born / Days (UK vinyl single)
Review by Gary Hill
This UK single showcases a couple songs from the Song of Seven album.
Babal - Who Will I Be When I Leave?
Review by Gary Hill
It's a pretty safe bet that you have never heard a band quite like this one. Their mix of sounds is decidedly artsy and freaky weird.
Robert Lee Balderrama - The Great Hall of Smooth Jazz
Review by Gary Hill
You might not know the name Robert Lee Balderrama, but I bet you know one of his songs.
Kate Bush - The Kick Inside (vinyl)
Review by Gary Hill
This 1978 release was the debut album from Kate Bush. It established her as an art-rocker and really fits well with the rest of her catalog.
Circus - Circus (vinyl)
Review by Gary Hill
This is a long-lost gem of early progressive rock. I suppose it should be called proto-prog, but it definitely has some pure prog moments.
The Company Stores - Family Album
Review by Gary Hill
This is the third album from this band, but it's the first time I've heard (or even "heard of" them). I have to say that, after hearing this disc, I'm definitely interested in getting to know more of their music.
The Deer's Cry - Heal the Heart
Review by Gary Hill
This act isn't precisely progressive rock. They do have a lot of prog tendencies, and there is a real art rock edge to this stuff.
Eela Craig - Eela Craig (vinyl)
Review by Gary Hill
Eela Craig was an Austrian progressive rock band. They released quite a few albums after this 1971 debut disc, but this one has been largely forgotten.
Elder - The Gold & Silver Sessions (blue and bone vinyl)
Review by Gary Hill
I love this release. First, the music here is just so cool.
Emerson, Lake and Palmer - Black Moon
Review by Gary Hill
Emerson Lake and Palmer broke up in 1979. They got back together in the 1990s, though, and this disc was the first music they released after that reunion.
Flash - In the USA
Review by Gary Hill
I am a Yes fanatic. I don't ever try to deny that 
Fractal Sextet - Fractal Sextet
Review by Gary Hill
I've reviewed several releases from Stephan Thelen, and this new project of his is not far removed musically from the kind of thing he does solo.
Peter Gabriel - Peter Gabriel (aka "1" and "Car") (vinyl)
Review by Gary Hill
This was Peter Gabriel's first solo album after he left Genesis in 1975. This 1977 release was also the first to bear the title "Peter Gabriel."
David Gilmour - Rattle That Lock
Review by Gary Hill
Rattle That Lock is the fourth solo studio album from David Gilmour. It was released in 2015.
Hawkwind - Repeat Performance (vinyl)
Review by Gary Hill
I previously reviewed the two United Artists compilations from Hawkwind. I figured since those were the first two comps from the band, I should do the third, this one on Charisma.
Intelligent Music Project VII - Unconditioned
Review by Gary Hill
This act is always so confusing because with each album it seems they take on a new name. with each new album.  
Rasmus Oppenhagen Krogh - Whereabouts (vinyl)
Review by Gary Hill
This record has some intriguing music on it. There is an echoey guitar based sound dominant on the first side.
Monica Laplante - Compression (digital single)
Review by Gary Hill
This single from Minneapolis artist Monica Laplante is pretty amazing stuff. I've put this under progressive rock because it's very much art music, and it has a lot of prog vibes going on.
Pete Malinverni - On The Town - Pete Malinverni Plays Leonard Bernstein
Review by Gary Hill
All the songs here are compositions originally by Leonard Bernstein. You probably got that from the title, though, right?
Marillion - Brave
Review by Greg Olma
Marillion took a turn in 1994 by releasing this concept album during a time when the music scene was really into grunge.  
Rob Massard - Ascension
Review by Gary Hill
I reviewed a previous set from Rob Massard a while ago. I landed that one under progressive rock, and said that it was mostly folk prog.
Migliori Amici & Co - Best of Friends
Review by Gary Hill
This debut set is quite impressive. The music here brings all kinds of differing musical styles together and blends them into a powerhouse progressive rock tapestry.
Moon Letters - Thank You From the Future
Review by Gary Hill
The first album from Moon Letters came out in 2019, and this is the follow up. That one was very strong, but I think this one surpasses it. 
Nemo - Les nouveaux mondes (2022 version)
Review by Gary Hill
I've not heard of this French band before, and this release sure makes a great first impression. The music here is inventive, creative and unique.
Gerald Peter Project - Incremental Changes, Pt. 2
Review by Gary Hill
This is a very strong album. The music here has elements of classical music, fusion, progressive rock and much more.
Queen - News of the World (vinyl)
Review by Gary Hill
I've mentioned it in previous reviews, Queen is an unusual band in that their sound was all over the place.
Reanimation - A Fear of Falling (vinyl)
Review by Gary Hill
We have reviewed several releases from this artist. On this album everything is done by one person, Michael Shanahan.
Jimmy Ryan - The Healing Guitar
Review by Gary Hill
This new album is intriguing. Based on the cover and title you might expect acoustic guitar solos, but that's not true.
Michael Salvatori - Waiting for Autumn
Review by Gary Hill
I covered a release from the band Apocalypse, whose 1976 album was recently released for the first time. That band was composed of several musicians including brothers Tom and Michael Salvatori.
MirĂ³ Henry Sobrer - Two of Swords
Review by Gary Hill
This is quite an unusual, but also intriguing, album. The music here is essentially jazz based, but it has a tendency to get into art music zones.
Un Drame Musical Instantané - Les Bons Contes Font les Bons Amis
Review by Gary Hill
This album (minus the bonus track) was originally released on vinyl in 1983. The music here fits along the lines of the Rock In Opposition movement.
Various Artists - Dark Exotica: As Dug By Lux & Ivy
Review by Gary Hill
This is an unusual double disc set. Let me say, right at the beginning, this is not progressive rock in a traditional sense
Vinyl Floor - Funhouse Mirror
Review by Gary Hill
I've reviewed several albums from Vinyl Floor over the years. I generally land them under progressive rock, despite the fact that it's not what I'd consider a tight fit.
Rick Wakeman - Time Machine
Review by Gary Hill
This was a 1988 release from Rick Wakeman. It features multiple vocalists.
Brian Woodbury - Rhapsody & Filigree
Review by Gary Hill
This album is decidedly progressive rock based. This is definitely not AOR styled prog.
Frank Zappa - Waka/Jawaka (vinyl)
Review by Gary Hill
This disc was the fourth solo album from Frank Zappa. It was released in 1972.
Metal/Prog Metal CD Reviews
Atrophy - Socialized Hate / Violent By Nature
Review by Gary Hill
This new double CD collection features the first two albums from Arizona based thrash band Atrophy.
Leader of Down - The Screwtape Letters
Review by Gary Hill
Take a hard rock sound of bands like Kiss and Nazareth and then bring more pure metal to the mix. That gets you close to what you can expect here.
Raven - Rock Until You Drop: The Over The Top Edition
Review by Gary Hill
This new four-CD edition of Raven's Rock Until You Drop features the full album along with bonus tracks on the first disc. From there we get demos and interview and live recordings to fill out the collection.
Xentrix - For Whose Advantage?
Review by Gary Hill
If which act becomes famous was based on talent, these guys should have been huge. For my money, they were one of the best thrash bands of the time when they came out..
Non-Prog CD Reviews
Mark Lee Allen - Locked Down (10-inch vinyl)
Review by Gary Hill
This set is unusual for Bear Family. It looks like the typical old-school release for which they are famous.
Amalia Bloom - Picturesque
Review by Gary Hill
First, let me say that although the moniker looks like the name of a woman, this is a band, not a solo artist, and it's all men.
Barenaked Ladies - Detour De Force
Review by Gary Hill
I've been a fan of Barenaked Ladies for a long time. Their blend of pop rock with an alternative weirdness and a sense of humor is compelling.
Joe Bennett & The Sparkletones - Cotton Pickin' Rockers
Review by Gary Hill
Hailing from South Carolina, this band at the time was made up of teenagers.
Chris Castino & Chicken Wire Empire - Fresh Pickles
Review by Gary Hill
There has been a real interest in roots music in the last decade or so. If you want new music that has an honest old-school bluegrass sound, I can't imagine you'll find much better than this.
Bo Diddley - Rocks
Review by Gary Hill
I think Bo Diddley is really one of the true founding fathers of rock and roll. It should be no surprise then that I like this collection.
Tyler Edwards - A Falling Sky
Review by Gary Hill
I previously reviewed another set from Tyler Edwards, and I think this one is the stronger of the two. There is a real singer-songwriter concept at play here.
ELDR - Nowhere Else To Go
Review by Gary Hill
ELDR is a husband and wife duo of Jameson Elder and Hanna Rae. The music they have created on this EP is intriguing and inventive.
The Freeway Jubilee - On The Horizon Vol. 1 (CD)
Review by Gary Hill
I previously reviewed the vinyl version of this release. This time I'm covering the CD edition.
Clay Fulton & The Lost Forty - Positive Numbers
Review by Gary Hill
This is the kind of music that just seems to fit into the American consciousness.
Stephen Jacques - Send Them Love
Review by Gary Hill
This is the third set from Stephen Jacques I've reviewed. All three have some strong music.
Karney - Gonna Be Beautiful
Review by Gary Hill
I've reviewed quite a few releases from Karney over the years. She can be counted on for quality music.
Hadley Kennary - Crooked Roots
Review by Gary Hill
This release is solid and entertaining. An EP, it's under twenty-minutes long.
Lawnmower Deth - Blunt Cutters
Review by Gary Hill
I've heard of this band for a long time, but this is my first time hearing them. I had heard that they were thrash metal.
Steve McCormick - Louisa
Review by Gary Hill
I really like the retro sounds on this release. The album covers quite a bit of range within that basic concept. .
Jenna McSwain - Enjoy Your Space
Review by Gary Hill
This is such a great EP. I had no idea what to expect going in, and I was completely blown away. I think that this will probably make my "best of 2022" list.
Nashville Pussy - Eaten Alive
Review by Gary Hill
Nashville Pussy is one of those bands that sort of walks on the edge of a fence in terms of genres. While I consider the vocals to be pretty much pure punk rock, the music covers a lot of territory.
Nine Pound Hammer - When the Sh*t Goes Down
Review by Gary Hill
This band is part of a wave of cow-punk bands. For those who aren't familiar, it means a merging of country music and punk, but you can probably figure that out.
Osibisa - Sunshine Day : The Boyhood Sessions (50th Anniversary Edition)
Review by Gary Hill
Osibisa is a band that's always been sort of at the edge of my interests, largely because Roger Dean did one of their album covers. I've never really heard a lot of their music, though.
Present Company - Present Company
Review by Gary Hill
There is something to be said for the power of shorter albums. I think this is a disc that could have benefitted from the removal of a few songs.
Suzi Quatro - The Albums 1980-1986
Review by Gary Hill
This collection gathers up three albums from Suzi Quatro that were released in the 1980s. I guess you could probably get that from the title, right?
Jerry Reed - The Rockin' U.S. Male (vinyl and CD)
Review by Gary Hill
This collection is all class. Then again, you expect quality from Bear Family Records, well at least I do.
Nolen Sellwood - Otherwise
Review by Gary Hill
I really love the mix of sounds here. We get folk music, some psychedelic vibes and more.
Tony Sheridan - Skinny Minny - The Brits Are Rocking Vol.6
Review by Gary Hill
Tony Sheridan was a big part of the same Hamburg scene from which the Beatles ultimately came, He became overshadowed as their fame grew. Based on this release, though,
Mae Simpson - Did You Make It Back
Review by Gary Hill
This EP from 2020 has quite a range of musical styles. It's all pulled together by Mae Simpson's potent vocal performance.
Mae Simpson - Goodbye (single)
Review by Gary Hill
In addition to this new single, I've also reviewed a 2020 EP from this artist in the latest issue.
Skids - Songs From A Haunted Ballroom
Review by Gary Hill
This is my first exposure to this band. They are considered a punk band, and really they are, but they land on the more melodic end of that equation.
Speakeazie - Bootlegger Blood EP
Review by Gary Hill
This music is unique. It's also strangely familiar.
Mack Stevens - Ain't That Right - An Unconventional Tribute To Sun Records (vinyl)
Review by Gary Hill
Mack Stevens is a modern artist who produces music that feels like it belongs in an earlier era.
Adrian John Szozda - Night Owl
Review by Gary Hill
If you are a big fan of roots music, you will find plenty to like here.
Various Artists - Alan Freed - A Hundred Years Of Rock 'n' Roll
Review by Gary Hill
You might wonder about the title of this release. You are probably thinking, "Ummm....rock and roll isn't 100 years old."
Various Artists - Blood On The Cats – Even Bloodier, 2CD Edition
Review by Gary Hill
This is a new edition of a psychobilly compilation that was originally released in 1983. That original set is augmented by a lot of bonus tracks on the first CD and even more making up a full second disc.
DVD/Video Reviews
Kate Bush - The Hounds Run Up The Hill DVD
Review by Gary Hill
These unauthorized videos are always sort of a roll of the disc. Some of them are very good, while others are lacking.
Van Duren - Waiting: The Van Duren Story DVD
Review by Gary Hill
I came into this documentary not really knowing what to expect. I'd never heard of Van Duren before.
Kiss - Kissology – The Ultimate Kiss Collection Vol. 3 1992-2000 DVD set
Review by Greg Olma
This is the last of the Kissology series even though there was a Volume 4 rumored that has not materialized yet.  This one covers a few eras, which makes it a weird one that is still very enjoyable.  
Randy Rhoads - Randy Rhoads: Reflections Of A Guitar Icon Blu-Ray
Review by Gary Hill
Randy Rhoads was only in the spotlight for those of us outside Los Angeles for a few short years, but he certainly made a lasting impact on the rock music world.
Paul Stanley - One Live Kiss DVD
Review by Greg Olma
This is the first time I get to review a DVD of a show that I actually attended.  Back in 2006, Paul Stanley went out on a solo tour to promote the Live To Win record. 


Interviews
Long Distance Calling
Interview by Gary Hill
Interview with Florian Füntmann of Long Distance Calling from 2022
 
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