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April 2020 - Issue 141
Progressive Rock CD Reviews
Acidic Base - Tachyon (digital single)
Review by Gary Hill

I previously reviewed another single by this act. I landed that one under progressive rock, but said that some might disagree with that decision.

Ars Nova - Fields Of People: Elektra & Atlantic Recordings 1968-1969
Review by Gary Hill

This new collection gathers up the music of Ars Nova that was originally released between 1968 and 1969. You probably figured that out from the title, though, right?

Art in America - Cloudborn
Review by Gary Hill

Built around a trio of siblings, one particularly unusual aspect of this band is the use of harp in rock music. This is their second album.

Asia - Live In Osaka
Review by Greg Olma

This double CD set is a nice live show from the Aqua tour in Japan.  

#Bloomerangs - Moments and Fragments
Review by Gary Hill

This is a strong set. While the bulk of this is fusion, there are a few exceptions.

The Brilliance - Suite No. 2 World Keeps Spinning: An Antidote to Modern Anxiety
Review by Gary Hill

This is actually a pretty hard album to classify. There are songs here that are full classical music excursions.

The Building - Petra
Review by Gary Hill

This may or may not fit under progressive rock, but I've put it there. If it does fit, it's not because of its resemblance to the classic prog of the 1970s.

Paige Cora - Instant in Time
Review by Gary Hill

I've landed this under progressive rock. It's not precisely a tight fit.

The Cyberiam - The Butterfly Effect
Review by Gary Hill

This new CD from the Chicago based progressive rock band The Cyberiam is five tracks, but one song. That's because that song is a multi-track epic that weighs in at over twenty-minutes of music.

Brian Davison - Brian Davison's Every Which Way: 50th Anniversary Remastered Edition
Review by Gary Hill

As you might gather from the title, this album was originally released in 1970, hence the 50th Anniversary.

EllaHarp - Screaming Into The Void (digital single)
Review by Gary Hill

This is such an intriguing and unique song. I've landed it under progressive rock, and I'm sure some will argue with that.

The Folsom Project - The Wolf and the Skull
Review by Gary Hill

This is without question progressive music. That said, I'm sure some people are likely to argue with its placement under prog.

Fraudprophets - Poptosis
Review by Gary Hill

As I explained in another review this issue, sometimes items that are prog get initially mis-categorized as something else.

Edgar W. Froese - Dalinetopia
Review by Gary Hill

Edgar Froese was probably best known as the mastermind behind Tangerine Dream. This a new edition of an album of his that was based on the art of Salvador Dali.

Gentlemen's Academy - Joy
Review by Gary Hill

I've landed this one under progressive rock. It's one of those where I almost didn't. 

Gordon Grdina's Nomad Trio - Nomad
Review by Gary Hill

This instrumental album is not for everyone, but it is not intended to be. Frank Zappa once said, "The more mediocre your music is, the more accessible it is to a larger number of people in the United States."

Peter Green - The End of the Game
Review by Gary Hill

Peter Green is one of the more unusual stories of the music business.

Chris Ianuzzi - Olga in a Black Hole
Review by Gary Hill

I am not convinced this fits under the progressive rock banner. I'm not sure where else it fits, though.

Jeads - Under the Veneer
Review by Gary Hill

This is quite an intriguing set. It's built around an old music box, and you can hear that presence very clearly in some of the music.

Jealous of the Birds - Wisdom Teeth
Review by Gary Hill

I've had this disc here for a while. Since half of every issue of Music Street Journal has to be progressive rock, things that don't fit under that category can take a while to get to.

King Crimson - Audio Diary 2014-2018
Review by Gary Hill

This new five-CD collection is pretty amazing. I've said before, and will repeat it here, that this new version of King Crimson might well be the best lineup they've had, particularly in terms of live shows.

King Crimson - In the Court of the Crimson King (50th Anniversary Edition)
Review by Gary Hill

This new four-disc (three CDs and one Blu-Ray) edition of King Crimson's debut disc is great. It has several variants of the music presented here.

Matthews Southern Comfort - New Mine
Review by Gary Hill

I previously reviewed another set from this act. Like that one, this is not necessarily the tightest fit under progressive rock.

Nektar - The Other Side
Review by Gary Hill

This is the brand new album from Nektar. A few years back the world lost Roye Albrighton, who had been a founding member of the band, and it could be argued was the leader of the group.

Nikolov-Ivanovic Undectet feat. Magic Malik - Frame and Curiosity
Review by Gary Hill

This is quite an intriguing set. Overall it lands under fusion, but it often shifts more toward the pure jazz side.

Ben Noble - Where the Light Comes In
Review by Gary Hill

I previously reviewed another set from this artist. I was tempted to put that one under progressive rock because it had some pieces that definitely showed off a prog sensibility.

Ontologics - Heading to the Outer Realm
Review by Gary Hill

Sometimes I have questions about putting something under progressive rock. This is not one of those times.

Proud Creature - Opening Creature EP
Review by Gary Hill

This set is particularly interesting. The electronic vibe on it gives off different angles on different tracks.

Pyramids on Mars - Edge of the Black
Review by Gary Hill

I've gone back and forth on whether this should go under prog or metal. It clearly has elements of both.

Markus Reuter - Featuring Fabio Trentini and Asaf Sirkis - Truce
Review by Gary Hill

Markus Reuter is a very talented musician, and he surrounds himself with other talented cohorts. This instrumental set showcases that quite well.

Oriana Setz - Metamorfosis
Review by Gary Hill

This is quite an effective and entertaining set. I have put this under progressive rock, but I'm sure some will argue with that. The mix of sounds, jazz, world and rock might qualify it by itself.

Sluka - Ready to Connect
Review by Gary Hill

This is really a hard artist to pin down stylistically.

Son of Man - State Of Dystopia
Review by Gary Hill

Honestly, were this getting placed strictly on the music contained here, it probably wouldn't get put under progressive rock.

Sonomaris - Initium
Review by Gary Hill

I have landed this set under progressive rock. I can see some people disagreeing with that.

Sons of Apollo - MMXX (Deluxe Edition)
Review by Gary Hill

It is still pretty early in the year, but I'll be surprised if this release doesn't make my "best of 2020" list. The mix of sounds here includes metal, good solid hard rock and plenty of progressive rock.

Joan Torres's All Is Fused - Finale (ft. Bubby Lewis) (digital single)
Review by Gary Hill

I previously reviewed an album from this act. That landed under prog, largely because we generally put fusion there, but also because it had some prog elements.

Gary Wilson - Tormented
Review by Gary Hill

When it comes to Gary Wilson albums, you pretty much know what you are going to get before you spin the disc. 

Zilla With Her Eyes Shut - Whisper Whisper (digital single)
Review by Gary Hill

I've landed this under prog. Don't expect old-school progressive rock. This is more of an art rock kind of thing.

Metal/Prog Metal CD Reviews
Amulet - The Inevitable War
Review by Mike Korn
There is a virtual cottage industry devoted to recreating the musical sound and spirit of British heavy metal from the late 70s and early 80s. This was the super-prolific period of time known as the New Wave of British Heavy Metal.
Black Sabbath - Seventh Star
Review by Greg Olma

This is a weird album in the Black Sabbath catalogue.  Initially meant as a solo record, the label and management “persuaded” Tony Iommi to release it under the banner of Black Sabbath featuring Tony Iommi.  

Metal Church - The Elektra Years 1984-1989
Review by Gary Hill

This new three-CD set gathers up the first three albums from Metal Church in one handy set. It comes with a cool booklet turned poster.

Warlock - Burning the Witches
Review by Gary Hill

In 1984 Warlock released this, their debut album. It showcased their female fronted sound.

Non-Prog CD Reviews
Acoustic Black - In a Different Light
Review by Gary Hill

While the music here is acoustic-based, it really has a punk sensibility. It's a hard rocking set that is cool.

Apache Rose - Attention! (digital single)
Review by Gary Hill

This is the second single I've heard (and reviewed) for this Russian act.

Aradia - No One Can Stop You Now (digital single)
Review by Gary Hill

This is a brand new single from Brooklyn based electro-pop artist Aradia. This has a real rock sound that sets it apart from a lot of modern acts.

Ari and Mia - Sew the City
Review by Gary Hill

There is a real bluegrass turned folk music concept to a lot of this. That's tempered with an artsy angle.

Bayonics - Resilience
Review by Gary Hill

While I like everything here at least to some degree, for my money these guys do best when they stick closer to pure reggae. The disc features that sound along with more pop oriented soulful music.

Lisa Bell - Back Seat
Review by Gary Hill

This is a considerably strong set. The vocals and songwriting work well throughout.

Chris Castino - Brazil
Review by Gary Hill

With country, rock and much more mixed together, this lands most often in pretty mainstream zones.

Erin Coburn - Out from Under
Review by Gary Hill

This is an intriguing release. It has plenty of hard rock built into the songs.

Bill Curreri - Hard Road Home
Review by Gary Hill

I previously reviewed another set from Bill Curreri. I said of that one that it was sort of in the same Americana style as Tom Petty, but that the vocals seemed a bit strange to me.

Davina and the Vagabonds - Sugar Drops
Review by Gary Hill

This is an interesting release. It has a lot in common with a lot of modern female songstresses.

Dubgee - Truth
Review by Gary Hill

This new hip hop set has some strong music. It also has some numbers that miss the mark a bit. Then again,

Delyn Grey - Battle (digital single)
Review by Gary Hill

There is a real stigma about mental illness in general in the world. That kind of stigma is an obstacle to people seeking treatment.

Happy Freuds - Why (digital single)
Review by Gary Hill

This new single from Happy Freuds is quite strong. I previously reviewed an album from the act and noted how it seemed to combine folk music, alternative rock and more.

Glenn Hughes - Justified Man: Studio Albums 1995-2003
Review by Gary Hill

This is a brand-new six-CD box set that gathers up the studio releases from Glenn Hughes released between 1995 and 2003, but I bet you got that from the title, right?

Matt Lande - Don't You (Forget About Me) (digital single)
Review by Gary Hill

This new single is a cover of the classic song from Simple Minds. The tune still holds up well, and this is a well done performance.

Mother Yeti - My Best Please
Review by Gary Hill

This is a hard rocking set that is very cool. It's set in an type of alternative rock that's built on modern and retro rock sounds.

Bif Naked - Jim (digital single)
Review by Gary Hill

This new single is all about betrayal. It showcases pain and anger very well.

Cami Petyn - Static (digital single)
Review by Gary Hill

This new single showcases a talented pop musician. The vocals are largely clean, which is a nice touch given the modern trend of "fixing" vocals in the studio..

Jackson Price and the Blues Rockets - I Used to Have Fun
Review by Gary Hill

While there is some range here, this is overall a pretty traditional blues album. The blues is a rather limited form, so it can feel repetitive at times.

Ptolemea - Maze
Review by Gary Hill

I am tempted to land this one under progressive rock. There is a lot of proggy sound in several of the cuts.

Rio Trio - Straight to the Top
Review by Gary Hill

There is some classy instrumental music to be found in the tracks contained here. It has a real organic vibe.

Marty Robbins - Rock'n Roll'n Robbins (10-inch vinyl EP)
Review by Gary Hill

This new EP is a reissue of sorts of a record from 1956. That one, though, only included six songs.

Rene Shades - Teenage Heart Attacks & Rock'n'Roll Heaven
Review by Gary Hill

This is an album that qualifies as a good set, but it seems that it could have been great.

3 Pairs of Boots - Gone South
Review by Gary Hill

This release is set in a style that has a lot of pure country music in the mix. You can probably get that from the cover, though.

Various Artists - Blues Kings of Baton Rouge
Review by Gary Hill

While a lot of attention has been focused over the years on blues scenes in towns like Memphis and Chicago, there was a prominent and vital blues movement in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Various Artists - Elvis Presley Connection Vol. 2
Review by Gary Hill

This various artists set focuses on roots of Elvis Presley and covers of his music. This is the second collection like this I've reviewed.

Various Artists - Great Tragedy: Winter Dance Party 1959 Part 2
Review by Gary Hill

This is a various artists set commemorating the fateful plane crash that killed Buddy Holly, Richie Valens and The Big Bopper.

Jordan Whitmore - Good Things
Review by Gary Hill

This set is quite strong. It has both modern sensibilities and classic sounds.

Zan Zone - Shorts
Review by Gary Hill

This is the second set from this act I've reviewed. When talking about that one I said that it was all over the place stylistically.

DVD/Video Reviews
Bad Company - Bad Company: Official Authorized 40th Anniversary Documentary Blu-Ray
Review by Gary Hill

This new documentary is supposed to tell the story of Bad Company.

The Cyberiam - Live in the Cyberiam Blu-ray
Review by Gary Hill

This is a new release from the Chicago act The Cyberiam. These guys, like a lot of prog bands, are impressive on studio releases, but really need to seen in live performance to be fully appreciated.

Vitesse - Live At Rockpalast 1979 DVD/CD Set
Review by Gary Hill

Apparently this band was fairly big on the European scene for quite a while. I'd not heard of them or heard them before.

Y&T - On With The Show DVD
Review by Greg Olma

This documentary was started a couple of years ago and funding was crowd sourced so, as fans we basically made this DVD happen.  It is certainly worth the wait because this  goes above and beyond my expectations. 

Interviews
Bernie Shaw and Dale Collins
Interview by Gary Hill

Interview with Dale Collins and Bernie Shaw of Bernie Shaw and Dale Collins from 2020

Concert Reviews
Y&T - Live in Houston, Texas, January 2020
Review by Greg Olma

It has been a few years since I have seen the might Y&T live in concert.  I moved from the Chicago-land area and found a new home outside of Houston.

 
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