Category Archives: melodic

New music – HEAVY FEATHER, CATS IN SPACE, EMPIRE CIRCUS

HEAVY FEATHER have signed with The Sign records for their debut album ‘Débris & Rubble’ due out on 5 April.

CATS IN SPACE release a new song of their upcoming album ‘Day Trip To Narnia’ (out Mar 8) and it is a disco floor filler 🙂

Excited by the Cats In Space new album and also the second album from EMPIRE CIRCUS. Entitled ‘Ti‘ it is released on Feb 1.

 

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Music news – DEVIN TOWNSEND announces new album ‘Empath’

Canadian heavy music artist Devin Townsend has officially announced the release of his forthcoming new album ‘EMPATH’ for the 29th March 2019.

In the lead up to the album’s release, Devin will walk fans through how Empath came together with a series of documentary episodes recorded as phone conversations during the course of the albums recording. Watch him explain more in this video:

Devin comments: “Hello everybody, this is Devin Townsend and I would like to formally announce that after almost a year and a half of working, I have finished Empath. Now this record has taken me down a lot of very interesting psychological and technical avenues and the process was documented from the very get-go by a series of documentary videos that I have done, that outline everything from the gestation of the idea to the actualisation of it, through all the existential ups and downs that went on. As such this record is different to any record that I have released thus far, and trying to get people on board for what it is versus what it isn’t, I think needs to be dealt with in a different way.

Stay tuned for the making of Empath – the video series.”

Over the past few years, the success that Devin has slowly worked for has fortunately come with the power to control his own creative destiny. The recent successes with the DVD from a sold-out Royal Albert hall, or his 2012 ‘Retinal Circus’, or last year’s ‘Ocean Machine’ live DVD with the Orchestra and Choir of State Opera Plovdiv has put him in a position where with the new album ‘EMPATH’, he will once and for all define himself as a musical force outside of any particular genre classification.

On this album Devin has decided to see what would happen if all the styles that make up his current interests were finally represented in one place. To finally shake the fear of expectation, and just do what it is he was meant to do creatively, EMPATH, true to the name, is about allowing the audience a feeling for a variety of musical emotions. The musical dynamics represented on this single album are broad, challenging, and immense. To approach this sort of work with a long history of what makes heavy music ‘heavy’, allows this to be done with a type of power rarely heard.

Joining Devin on this album is Frank Zappa alumni Mike Keneally as music director, as well as Morgan Ågren (Mats And Morgan, Frank Zappa, Fredrik Thordendal), Anup Sastry (Monuments, Periphery), Samus Paulicelli (Decrepit Birth, Abigail Williams), Nathan Navarro, Elliot Desagnes, Steve Vai, Chad Kroeger, Anneke Van Giersbergen, Ché Aimee Dorval, Ryan Dhale and the Elektra Women’s Choir.

A bold statement with massive production values and dynamic, uncompromised musicality. This is a statement about not only pursuing creative freedom in a conservative scene, but also trying to show that heavy music is truly a valid musical tool.

‘EMPATH’ will be released on Limited 2 CD Digipak (including an entire disc of bonus material), Standard CD Jewelcase, Gatefold 180G 2LP Vinyl + CD + LP-booklet & as digital album. The full track-listing is as follows:

  1. Castaway
  2. Genesis
  3. Spirits Will Collide
  4. Evermore
  5. Sprite
  6. Hear Me
  7. Why
  8. Borderlands
  9. Requiem
  10. Singularity Part 1 – Adrift
  11. Singularity Part 2 – I Am I
  12. Singularity Part 3 – There Be Monsters
  13. Singularity Part 4 – Curious Gods
  14. Singularity Part 5 – Silicon Scientists
  15. Singularity Part 6 – Here Comes The Sun

Last year Devin announced a special ‘An Evening With’ tour that would see him performing acoustically, as well as taking part in a fan Q&A at each show.

The full list of dates are as follows, many of which are already sold out:

7th March – The Piano Man Jazz Club, New Delhi, India SOLD OUT

8th March – Levi’s Lounge, Mumbai, India SOLD OUT

29th March – Savoy Theater, Helsinki, Finland SOLD OUT

30th March – Savoy Theater, Helsinki, Finland SOLD OUT

31st March – Sodra Teatern, Stockholm, Sweden SOLD OUT

1st April – Edderkoppen, Oslo, Norway SOLD OUT

2nd April – Bremen Theater, Copenhagen, Denmark

4th April – PassionKirchhe, Berlin, Germany

5th April – Stodola, Warsaw, Poland

6th April – La Fabrica, Prague, Czech Republic SOLD OUT

7th April – Freiheiz, Munich, Germany SOLD OUT

9th April – Kulturkirche, Cologne, Germany SOLD OUT

10th April – Grunspan, Hamburg, Germany

11th April – Bravo Kerk, Haarlem, Netherlands SOLD OUT

13th April – Reading 3, Tel Aviv, Israel

24th April – Bush Hall, London, UK SOLD OUT

25th April – Bush Hall, London, UK SOLD OUT

26th April – St George’s, Bristol, UK SOLD OUT

27th April – City Varieties, Leeds, UK SOLD OUT

29th April – Jam House, Edinburgh, UK SOLD OUT

30th April – Glee Club, Birmingham, UK SOLD OUT

Remaining tickets can be found here: https://bnds.us/hotp9q

Devin’s varied back catalogue is also being celebrated with lavish vinyl box-sets under the name of ERAS. Having already released parts 1 and 2 earlier in early 2018, the end of the year saw the release of part 3, which features some of his most recent work with Devin Townsend Project, including the albums ‘Accelerated Evolution’, ‘Epicloud’, ‘Sky Blue’, ‘Transcendence’ & the first ever vinyl release of the second part of the DTP’s now legendary Royal Albert Hall show. Order your copy of this deluxe 10 LP box-set here: https://devintownsendproject.lnk.to/ErasIII

Music News – Gold Dust’, the stunning new Love Song by Michael Armstrong – 15th February

The ultimate love song… ‘Gold Dust’ Released 15th February 2019

Gold Dust may well be the ultimate love song. An honest and heartfelt gift to his wife and children, the song has been counted by many as amongst their favourites on #LookingForTheWorld, the 5 * album described as an ‘homage to music’.

“A cool, confident collection of original songs which honour the golden years of songwriting brilliance.  No airy-fairy pussyfooting – he tackles life’s big subjects with grit and guts, sporting his heart on two bare arms and gargling with courage. His vast vocal ability and blatant inclination to love overflow. Sharp and infectious  #LookingForTheWorld defies age, eras and genres in homage to music…an album with everything.”

– Lesley-Ann Jones (Sunday  Times Bestselling Author of Bohemian Rhapsody: The Freddie Mercury Story)

“This is a constantly impressive collection on which, while wearing his influences very much on his sleeve, he nevertheless establishes his own mark on the material. It’s quality fare throughout, skilfully delivered.”

– ***** RnR Magazine

www.michaelarmstrongmusic.co.uk

About Michael Armstrong

Michael Armstrong was born in South London in November 1973. His parents were not in the slightest bit musical, although they did listen to music frequently. Michael remembers car journeys singing along and harmonising with his brother to The Beatles Greatest Hits. He knew from a very early age that he wanted to express himself through music and song.

At around the age of 11 he began to seriously tackle learning the guitar and as soon as he was able to play 3 chords he had written his first song. Once he had mastered the guitar he taught himself to play the piano during Games lessons at school stating ‘I just couldn’t hack Rugby, not in the cold wet weather’. Luckily his lack of interest and ability in the sport was confirmed by his teachers who were happy to leave him tinkering away in the music room.

At the age of 15 he entered a song writing competition on BBC’s Pebble Mill At One, coming in second place to a 16 year old Mancunian called Gary Barlow. Take that! By 18, he had his own band and performed his original material across the country eventually playing several nights at The Shepherds Bush Empire in London.

By the age of 23, having toured incessantly, Michael became disillusioned with the music business and joined his father at the family construction company. For 15 years they grew the company to huge success and Michael lived a happy and fruitful life with his wife and three children.

In 2011 a string of events suddenly sent Michael on a new but familiar path. His father’s health led him to retirement and Michael’s own health scare led him to assess his situation. Some might call it a mid-life crisis! Coupled with the failing UK economy and a chance encounter with music biz guru Lisa Davies, Michael felt the world of showbiz beckoning him again. He had also amassed some 200 songs that had never been released. Seeing his talent, and amazed by his music, Lisa became Michael’s manager and set about raising his profile across the business.

After receiving great reactions to an EP, Michael set about recording his debut album ‘Michael Armstrong’ which was eventually released on 29th June 2015. It was met with resounding success, championed by the late Terry Wogan on BBC Radio 2 and gaining airplay across the globe. The album featured guitar giants Albert Lee (2 x Grammy Award Winner), Elliott Randall (Steely Dan, Doobie Brothers) and Phil Palmer (Bob Dylan, Robbie Williams) and was produced by Keith Bessey (10cc, Cliff Richard, The Ramones).

As a result of the album’s success, Michael has since been interviewed and has performed on just about every radio station in the land several times over. He has additionally gained major airplay across the globe including the UK’s BBC Radio 2, and mainstream stations all over Europe, USA, Australia and South America, where his single ‘The Radio Years’ was a Top 10 hit. This has further led to numerous appearances on national TV such as ITV’s Lorraine, Sky News, BBC News, ITN plus he is a regular on Vintage TV.

A dedicated touring artist, Michael has performed with some of the biggest names in the business. He has spent over two years ‘on the road’ headlining his own shows as well as appearing as a special guest on major tours with Leo Sayer, Vonda Shepard, T’Pau, Beverley Craven, Dean Friedman & The Hollies’ Peter Howarth. He has also collaborated and worked alongside massive global stars including Sir Paul McCartney, Sir Cliff Richard, Mark Knopfler, Glenn Frey, Chris de Burgh, Russell Watson, Hank Marvin, Michael Ball and countless others.

In 2016 Michael released the official 60th Anniversary commemorative single for Liverpool’s famous Cavern Club and performed it on stage at the venue during a very special celebratory party which included many associated local and national dignitaries. That same year he was invited to open the Great British Radio Reunion with his anthem ‘The Radio Years’ and was selected by his local authority to perform and present an award at their Annual Local Heroes Awards Ceremony in conjunction with BBC radio.

Since completing his latest album earlier this year, Michael has spent time in Los Angeles writing new material with US singer-songwriter Ben Folds, and back home in the UK collaborating again with producer Warren Bennett. Watch this space….

www.michaelarmstrongmusic.co.uk

interview with PAUL LOGUE from EDEN’S CURSE

(This is a syndicated interview and well worth a read if you are a fan of the band or power/melodic metal)

edens curse poster (low res)

Congratulations on the release of your ‘Testament – The Best Of Eden’s Curse’ album Paul. Does that mean you guys are splitting up now? 😉

PL: Haha! No, but I get the context. A lot of band’s seem to break up and then release a ‘Best Of’ album to fulfil contractual obligations. But I hate to disappoint you – we are going nowhere!

So why now then?

PL: The timing of the release came via discussions with our label AFM Records. We have such an open and close relationship, having worked together for over 12 years and we are constantly bouncing ideas off each other. We both felt it was the perfect time, especially with us heading out on a big UK tour with Michael Schenker Fest. One of our main aims on that tour was obviously to win over new fans and ‘Testament’ would hopefully be a great tool for helping convert those people who liked what we were doing on the night into hardcore fans.

‘Testament’ is not your typical ‘Best Of’ release that has two or three CD’s full of the band’s greatest songs. You instead have opted for one disc with fourteen of the band’s best songs and a second disc of bonus tracks and a brand-new song. Can you explain why?

PL: Sure! The aim is simply to appeal to fans both old and new. Disc one is primarily aimed at potential new fans. If you always fancied checking out our music and don’t know where to begin this, is in our opinion, is a great starting point. For the guys that have the albums already, then it’s a good compilation with arguably all our big songs on one CD. Disc two was compiled especially with our long-time followers in mind. We are very much a band who listens to its fan base and for many years we have been asked “can you release all the bonus tracks on one disc?”. Unfortunately, for contractual reasons, that was unable to happen until now, as we extended our worldwide deal with AFM Records and they now hold all the rights. There are a couple of extra special tracks that have not seen the light of day on general release before and of course a brand-new song called ‘Forever’.

Who chose the tracks for the best album and put the running order together?

PL: I chose the songs with our A&R director at AFM Records, Mr Timo Hoffmann. I put together the running order exactly like we would perform it as a set list, if we were playing it live, and I think it really works.

In April 2019 you will undertake the ‘Testament’ tour in the UK. What will feature in the set?

PL: We will play ‘Testament’ in full along with the new song ‘Forever’.

And you have two amazing support bands in Mob Rules and Degreed as part of a brilliant triple package?

PL: Yes, that’s right! Mob Rules are one of my favourite bands, but I have never seen them live before. So naturally I was delighted when they accepted our offer. Degreed are relatively new to me. I have heard the name before but only caught them live for the first-time supporting H.E.A.T in Glasgow and then we played together in Malmo at Melodic Rock Fest Scandinavia in Sweden this past summer. So, I kept them in mind when it came to looking for a third band for the tour. We worked very hard on getting a package together that really stood out for the fans, and when it was announced it seemed to receive a very positive response. The proof is in the pudding though and it’s all about how many people turn out for the shows though. So, get your tickets bought people! 😉

Speaking of tours, you are just hot off the UK tour supporting Michael Schenker Fest. How was that experience?

PL: The tour was excellent. As I mentioned above, our main aim was to win new fans and we certainly did that. We played very well every single night and got better as the tour went on. Some of the stage times were a little earlier than we would have liked, as Michael was playing a near three-hour set, but beggars cannot be choosers and we were delighted to be involved and playing on some of the UK’s most iconic stages.

What shows were the highlights?

Glasgow, as always! SWG3 was packed and the gig went like a dream. We opened the Hard Rock Hell XII festival in North Wales in front of a very full room and London at the iconic O2 Forum in Kentish Town was superb.

What’s next for Eden’s Curse?

PL: First up, it’s a relaxing end of the year spending Christmas and New Year with our families. Then into 2019, we will perform at Planet Rock Radio’s Winter’s End Festival in England in March, and as mentioned above, we will undertake the ‘Testament UK Tour’ in April. For the remainder of the year though, we will be focusing on writing our next album, which we have begun but not in earnest.

So, you have actually started writing?

PL: Yes! I have recorded one instrumental track with our drummer John and have several new riffs and ideas recorded, but in very early stages, with maybe only one song pretty developed, instrumentally at this point.

You guys always seem to have a very clear idea of where each album is headed. Is it more of the same?

PL: First and foremost, I am always very sure of what I want to write, which for me is always just good quality melodic hard rocking metal music. It is never forced but I always write for myself first and foremost. We will never stray too much from what we are all about, after all it is our identity, but I think our fans can hear with the newer track ‘Forever’ what this line-up of Eden’s Curse is all about and capable of. We have several ideas that I am very excited about and that for me is what keeps writing fresh and interesting. If it doesn’t excite you then don’t bother!

Care to elaborate further?

PL: Not too much, but I am exploring some lyrical concepts that are pretty cool.

A concept album?

PL: I never said that haha!

But you never said no?

PL: No I didn’t haha! We will see. I am not committing to anything at this stage.

When do you expect to have the album ready?

PL: We haven’t even written it yet, so not before 2020.

Well there you have it folks – the Curse are going to be back with their sixth album at some point in the near future. Until then, we have the wonderful ‘Testament’ and the new track ‘Forever’ to whet our appetites. You can buy ‘Testament – The Best Of Eden’s Curse’ and tickets for the tour with Mob Rules and Degreed from www.edenscurse.com and follow the band on Facebook at www.facebook.com/edenscurseofficial

Music matters with…JOSH TAERK

I have been a fan of Josh Taerk since his early days and it is a real delight to see him gaining popularity for his heartfelt and moving songs. If he plays near to you go see him live and drop by on his socials as I am sure he would love to connect and here from you.

It’s all about making connections…

Music is everything to me because music is my way of communicating with the world. I feel like we as people are the most honest, heartfelt and emotionally raw we can be through the music we listen to and the music we write. Our stories go way beyond language barriers, national boarders and even personal experience when told through music. It all boils down to how something makes you feel, and when I listen to some of my favorite songs, knowing that other people are thinking and feeling the same things that I am.

Lately, I can’t stop listening to John Mayer’s album The Search For Everything, specifically his song “In The Blood.” I love how uncomplicated the music is, how simple the chord structure is, and how complicated the emotions he is talking about are. It’s such a perfect song for a record called, The Search For Everything because it feels he’s trying to figure out who he is in relation to where he came from, something I think everyone can relate to. Does our past make us who we are, or do we have a say in who we become? In life and in the song, it seems to come down to the choices we make.

‘How much like my brothers, do my brothers wanna be? Does a broken home become another broken family? Or will we be there for each other, like nobody ever could? Will it wash out in the water, or is it always in the blood?

I can feel love the I want, I can feel the love I need But it’s never gonna come the way I am Could I change it if I wanted, could I rise above the flood? Will it wash out in the water, or is it always in the blood?’

I also use music as motivation to continue following my dreams and making those dreams a reality. I listen to The Script’s song “Hall Of Fame” featuring will.i.am when I work out, I’m a bit of a fitness nut on and off the road, as well as the day of a show. This song just gets my heart pumping, that fire going in my chest, and gets me into that make it happen mindset.

I love Zac Brown Band’s song “Remedy” on their Jekyll + Hyde album. The message is so powerful and speaks to me as a musician and performer. My goal when I get up onstage, or release a song is, again, to connect with people, let them know they are not alone in how they are thinking and feeling, and try and leave this world a little better than how I found it. That is exactly what Zac Brown Band talks about in the Lyrics to “Remedy.” It’s not about what you believe in, or the specific details of your day to day. It’s about getting to the root of what we as people can do for each other and for ourselves, it’s about how everything boils down to love and how powerful love can be.

(Love is the remedy) We’re all in this world together Life’s a gift that we have to treasure Happiness, now that is the measure Love is the remedy

(Love is the remedy) Everyone can be forgiven One love and one religion Open up your heart and listen Love is the remedy Pray to be stronger and wiser And know you get what you give God is love one another Amen (amen), amen, amen (amen)

New Music – MOTEL MIRRORS

Six song EP worthy of investigation as they mix Americana and a healthy dose of good time rock ‘n’ roll. The EP is release on 22 February.

Gotta Lotta Rhythm is the latest release from Motel Mirrors, the Memphis, Tennessee-based Americana supergroup featuring John Paul Keith, Amy LaVere, and Will Sexton.
The six-song EP features the band’s take on cover tunes by Patsy Cline, Jimmy Reed, Wanda Jackson, Gram Parsons, and Glen Glenn, as well as one original (a fresh new arrangement of the Keith-penned “Meet Me on the Corner”, which first appeared on Motel Mirrors’ 2013 debut).

Recorded and mixed entirely on analog tape at Memphis’ Electraphonic Recording, Gotta Lotta Rhythm will be available as a limited-edition one-sided 12″ vinyl record, with music on one side and screen-printed artwork by Wisconsin artist Chopper Chioda on the other, as well as digitally.

The EP will be anticipated by track Gotta Lotta Rhythm, available in all the digital stores from Feb. 1, 2019.

Preorders: www.stripedmusic.com from Feb. 1

Bio:
In 2013, John Paul Keith & Amy LaVere formed Motel Mirrors – a duet project born out of a mutual desire for new artistic challenges and what might’ve just been a long overdue collaboration between two artists whose styles so clearly complemented one another. JP and Amy put out a 10” EP, Motel Mirrors. It was incredibly well received (named one of the “10 Essential Albums of 2013” by No Depression and selected as one of the best Memphis albums of the year by The Memphis Commercial-Appeal) and they had a blast touring together to support it. They added noted Austin, Texas guitarist Will Sexton to the mix and with three songwriters and three singers, the dynamic and the possibilities have changed.

Motel Mirrors released their full-length debut, In The Meantime, on Last Chance Records in March 2018, to critical praise, climbing to #21 on the Americana Albums chart in the US.

Music News – Original SURVIVOR vocalist DAVE BICKLER has confirmed a short run of UK dates in March

Original SURVIVOR vocalist DAVE BICKLER has confirmed a short run of UK dates in March. The voice of the worldwide hit ‘Eye Of The Tiger’ will play LONDON The Garage 11, BRISTOL Thekla 12, NOTTINGHAM Rescue Rooms 13, PRESTATYN HRH AOR 14.
Tickets on sale now here
CHROME MOLLY have been announced as Special Guests for all shows except Prestatyn.
In 2018 Dave Bickler released his long anticipated solo album Darklight on all digital platforms.The album has been a labour of love and his main focus for many years. Its release was accompanied by a simple statement which said “Remember, there’s no light without dark, and there’s more to light than meets the eye! Happy listening!”
As the original singer in the band Survivor, Dave Bickler had his biggest hit with the double platinum 1982 hit Eye of the Tiger, the theme song for the motion picture Rocky III. The song, which topped the US, British and Australian charts, became an international hit, selling millions of copies around the world.The song won Bickler and the band a Grammy Award for Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal, was voted Best New Song by the People’s Choice Awards and received an Academy Award nomination.In subsequent years the song continues to be an influence, featuring in a variety of spheres including sporting events, electronic games such as Guitar Hero, and numerous Best of charts.
DAVE BICKLER
(Original SURVIVOR vocalist)
plus special guests
Chrome Molly
UK – MARCH 2019
11 LONDON, The Garage
12 BRISTOL, Thekla
13 NOTTINGAM, Rescue Rooms
14 PRESTATYN, HRH AOR*
* Dave Bickler only