Bryan’s Best of 2019

Here we are at the end of another year. As you’re probably well aware, 2019 has been the latest in a string of great years for progressive rock and metal. Overall it didn’t blow me away like other years have (a few particular albums did however), but I think that’s more because of how my year has gone. I finished up grad school in the spring, and I spent the entire year job-searching before finally starting a new job at the beginning of this month. A couple of important people in my life died this year as well, so overall it has been a year full of challenges. My ability to properly soak in all the great music that has been released understandably suffered. But nevertheless, I found much to enjoy this year, and the following are some of my favorites. They are in no particular order except for my top three down at the bottom of this list.

Rise Twain – Rise Twain

The first album by Philadelphia-area duo Rise Twain is a stellar example of what popular music should be. Brett Kull and J. D. Beck are excellent songwriters and equally talented musicians. They combine the simplicity of a good song with the more technical aspects of prog. While it may be hard to call this a “prog” album, it certainly has many varied influences that make this a solid showing. Check out my review and interview with Brett Kull here: https://progarchy.com/2019/08/30/a-conversation-with-brett-kull-of-rise-twain/

Soen – Lotus

This is a magnificent album. Beautifully heavy, as any metal album should be, it retains an ability to move int0 peaceful contemplative spaces. When this album rocks, it rocks hard, and it keeps an upbeat tone that so many metal albums often lose. “Lotus” delivers musically, lyrically, and vocally. Check out Time Lord’s review here: https://progarchy.com/2019/01/09/album-preview-soen-lotus-soenmusic/

Continue reading “Bryan’s Best of 2019”

2019 Prog (Plus) Preview 2!

More new music, live albums, reissues (regular, deluxe & super-deluxe) and even books about music heading our way between now and Christmas?  Yep.  Following up on my previous post, it’s another exhaustive sampling of promised progressive goodies — along with other personal priorities — below.  Click on the titles for pre-order links — whenever possible, you’ll wind up at the online store that gets as much money as possible directly to the creators.

Out now:

Andrew Keeling, Musical Guide to In the Court of the Crimson King, 10/50 Edition: composer/musicologist/online diarist Keeling’s revision of his 2009 book (the first of a series acclaimed by King Crimson’s Robert Fripp).

Marillion with Friends from the Orchestra: 9 Marillion classics re-recorded by the full band, the string quartet In Praise of Folly, flautist Emma Halnan and French horn player Sam Morris.  Available on CD.

A Prog Rock Christmas: Billy Sherwood produces 11 holiday-themed tracks from the typical all-star cast (members of Yes, Utopia, Flying Colors, Renaissance, District 97, Curved Air and more).  Download and CD available now; LP available November 1.

 

October 25:

King Crimson, In the Court of the Crimson King (50th Anniversary Edition): featuring brand new stereo and surround mixes in 24/96 resolution by Steven Wilson.  Available in 3 CD + BluRay or  2 LP versions.  (Note that the new mixes will also be included in the Complete 1969  CD/DVD/BluRay box set, which has been delayed until 2020.)

Van Morrison, Three Chords and the Truth: 14 new songs from Van the Man, available in digital, CD or LP versions.

Neil Young & Crazy Horse, Colorado: the first Young/Horse collaboration since the 2012 albums Americana and Psychedelic Pill, available in CD or 2LP versions.

Continue reading “2019 Prog (Plus) Preview 2!”

Riverside to Release Special 2CD+DVD Edition of “Wasteland”

RIVERSIDE – Announce special 2CD+DVD edition of ‘Wasteland’ album and new Digital EP!

Final leg of “Wasteland” tour started!

Polish progressive Rock masters RIVERSIDE are pleased to announce a special edition 2CD+DVD version of the “Wasteland” album, scheduled for release on November 29th, 2019 via InsideOutMusic.

The ”Wasteland – Hi-Res Stereo and Surround Mix” 2CD+DVD will be released as Digipak format with Slipcase and includes a DVD bonus disc of “Wasteland” as Hi-Res Stereo 24bit version and as Surround Mix (4.1), plus 3 video clips. This special edition also contains 5 previously unreleased acoustic tracks/versions on a separate CD. Here is the exact tracklisting for the 3-Disc release:

CD 1 – “Wasteland” Album (50:58 min.):

1. The Day After (01:48)
2. Acid Rain (06:03)
3. Vale Of Tears (04:49)
4. Guardian Angel (04:24)
5. Lament (06:09)
6. The Struggle For Survival (09:32)
7. River Down Below (05:41)
8. Wasteland (08:25)
9. The Night Before (03:59)

CD 2 – “Acoustic Session” (26:48 min.):

1. Vale Of Tears – Acoustic (05:18)
2. Out Of Myself – Acoustic (03:57)
3. 02 Panic Room – Acoustic (03:26)
4. River Down Below – Acoustic (05:01)
5. Wasteland – Live Intro (09:00)

DVD (122:20 min.):

“Wasteland” Hi-Res Stereo (50:58 min.):
1. The Day After (Hi-Res Stereo) (01:48)
2. Acid Rain (Hi-Res Stereo) (06:03)
3. Vale Of Tears (Hi-Res Stereo) (04:49)
4. Guardian Angel (Hi-Res Stereo) (04:24)
5. Lament (Hi-Res Stereo) (06:09)
6. The Struggle For Survival (Hi-Res Stereo) (09:32)
7. River Down Below (Hi-Res Stereo) (05:41)
8. Wasteland (Hi-Res Stereo) (08:25)
9. The Night Before (Hi-Res Stereo) (03:59)

“Wasteland” Surround Mix (50:58 min.):
1. The Day After (Surround Mix) (01:48)
2. Acid Rain (Surround Mix) (06:03)
3. Vale Of Tears (Surround Mix) (04:49)
4. Guardian Angel (Surround Mix) (04:24)
5. Lament (Surround Mix) (06:09)
6. The Struggle For Survival (Surround Mix) (09:32)
7. River Down Below (Surround Mix) (05:41)
8. Wasteland (Surround Mix) (08:25)
9. The Night Before (Surround Mix) (03:59)

Video-Clips (20:24 min.):
1. Lament (Official Video) (06:11)
2. River Down Below (Official Video) (05:40)
3. Wasteland (Official Video) (08:33)

The 5 previously unreleased acoustic tracks/versions of the “Acoustic Session” will also made available as separate Digital EP on November 29th, 2019 as well.

RIVERSIDE checked in with the following comment about the upcoming releases:
And so we’ve been talked into this yet again 🙂 It’s our second encounter, after LFTM, with the surround sound. We’re hoping that revisiting this release in a different dimension will bring you a lot of joy and positive feelings, especially that we’re still touring with this material. As a bonus, we have prepared a few acoustic tracks in quite surprising arrangements. We’re hoping it will be an interesting experience :)“

The pre-order for both upcoming RIVERSIDE releases starts today and here:

“Acoustic Session” Digital EP:
https://Riverside.lnk.to/AcousticSessionEP

”Wasteland – Hi-Res Stereo and Surround Mix” 2CD+DVD:
https://Riverside.lnk.to/WastelandHi-ResStereoAndSurroundMix

Or order “Wasteland“ in its various formats here: https://Riverside.lnk.to/Wasteland

Check out the singles launched for RIVERSIDE’s “Wasteland” here:
“Lament”: https://youtu.be/4Wqlts7QWA8
“River Down Below”: https://youtu.be/ZS1crIkpnwc
“Vale Of Tears”: https://youtu.be/001IMO53JwY
And watch a live clip for “Wasteland” here: https://youtu.be/-ygv3BBqv3U

After a string of all sold-out shows in Poland, RIVERSIDE have now started the final leg of touring in support of their latest album “Wasteland”, which covers 8 dates across Germany and Luxembourg with Iamthemorning as support. Don’t miss out:

RIVERSIDE live 2019:
19.09 – Neuberinhaus, Reichenbach, Germany
20.09 – Freiheiz, Munich, Germany
21.09 – Jovel Music Hall, Münster, Germany
22.09 – Hirsch, Nürnberg, Germany
24.09 – KUZ, Mainz, Germany
25.09 – Kulturfabrik, Esch Sur Alzette, Luxembourg
26.09 – Substage, Karlsruhe, Germany
28.09 – Waschhaus, Potsdam, Germany
Tour trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NnstBLqM8U0

Concert Review: Riverside Rock Chicago – 5/19/2019

Riverside, Live at the Chop Shop, Chicago, IL, May 19, 2019

Setlist: Acid Raid, Vale of Tears, Reality Dream I, Lament, Saturate Me (instrumental intro only), Out of Myself, Second Life Syndrome (first part only), Left Out, Guardian Angel, Lost (Why Should I Be Frightened By a Hat?), The Struggle for Survival, Egoist Hedonist (without third part, extended second part), Wasteland

Encore: O2 Panic Room, River Down Below

Last night I saw Riverside for the first time. If I can help it, it won’t be the last. Wow. You don’t really get an appreciation for how good these guys are until you see them live. For me, there wasn’t a single moment of disappointment during this show. From the setlist to the performance to the crowd, everything was exceptional. They deserve to be playing much larger venues here in the United States.

Contrive

The show opened with Australian heavy metal band, Contrive. Contrive are a two-man group comprised of identical twin brothers. Both were great, and the drummer was particularly exceptional. The guitarist was quite good too, mixing many different styles throughout their hour-long opening set, including a few seconds of Hackett-esque tones. Opening bands can be hit or miss, but they did a good job of warming up the crowd for Riverside. They even started a few minutes before the stated showtime, which was nice since the 8pm start time on a Sunday evening with work the next day was already a bit much.

I’ve never seen a road crew break down and get ready for the main attraction so quickly. Everything was already set up for Riverside, but they had to take down all the gear from Contrive – and they did that and got everything ready for Riverside in less than 10 minutes. It was entertaining just to watch that.

The Mighty Duda

Riverside didn’t waste any time getting into it, starting out with “Acid Rain” from Wasteland. Within seconds I learned something I had never realized about Riverside – Mariusz Duda’s bass drives the show. I originally thought the driving riff on “Acid Rain” was from a guitar. Nope. All bass. I didn’t realize he was that good. I had a blast watching him play the whole night. I’ve seen John Myung live (probably the most acclaimed bassist I’ve seen live), and I’d say that Duda’s performance matched or surpassed that. At some points during the show, he was strumming one of his three or four bass guitars. Who the heck does that? The mighty Duda, that’s who. Maybe this is old news to most of you who have been listening to them for years, but allow me as a relatively new fan (I didn’t start listening to them until after Piotr Grudziński passed away) to gush over how great Riverside is.

Continue reading “Concert Review: Riverside Rock Chicago – 5/19/2019”

Riverside Announce Vinyl Re-releases

From the fine folks at Inside Out:

RIVERSIDE – Announce vinyl re-releases out soon; Next touring campaign starting soon!

Polish Rock masters RIVERSIDE are happy to announce a string of long awaited vinyl re-releases for their second, third and fourth albums “Second Life Syndrome” (2005, 2-LP), “Rapid Eye Movement” (2007, 2-LP + bonus tracks) and “Anno Domini High Definition” (2009, 1-LP) out March 15th, 2019 via InsideOutMusic.

The albums will be available on 180gr. vinyl and come in Gatefold sleeves, with the standard album on CD as bonus. Next to the standard Black vinyl version, there will be limited editions of coloured vinyl runs as follows:

RIVERSIDE – “Second Life Syndrome (Re-issue 2019)” – 2LP+CD:
Black: Unlimited
Transparent Orange: 200x (via IOM Webshop Europe)
Tansparent Sun Yellow: 300x (via IOM Webshop & CM Distro Europe)
Dark Green: 100x (Exclusive from the band!)

RIVERSIDE – “Rapid Eye Movement (Re-issue 2019)” – 2LP+CD:
Black: Unlimited
Transparent Orange: 200x (via IOM Webshop Europe)
White: 300x (via IOM Webshop & CM Distro Europe)
Transparent Blue: 100x (Exclusive from the band!)

RIVERSIDE – “Anno Domini High Definition (Re-issue 2019)” – LP+CD:
Black: Unlimited
Transparent Orange: 200x (via IOM Webshop Europe)
Transparent Yellow: 300x (via IOM Webshop & CM Distro Europe)
Red: 100x (Exclusive from the band!)

Pre-sale for the re-releases started as of today from the IOM Webshop here:
https://www.insideoutshop.de/Artist/Riverside/20863?Page=1&PageSize=25&Sort=13

RIVERSIDE will also soon continue the promotion of their current album ”Wasteland” by embarking on their next touring of Europe (with newly announced support act Lesoir) and North America, as well as some festival appearances for 2019 as follows (Updates marked *):

RIVERSIDE – Wasteland European Tour 2019
06.03. Prague (Czech Republic) – Palac Akropolis
07.03. Bratislava (Slovakia) – Majestic
09.03. Budapest (Hungary) – A38
10.03. Bucharest (Romania) – Quantic Club / Soundart Festival
12.03. Sofia (Bulgaria) – City Stage
13.03. Belgrade (Serbia) – Dom Omladine
14.03. Ljubljana (Slovenia) – Kino Šiška
16.03. Rome (Italy) – Largo
17.03. Milan (Italy) – Magnolia
18.03. Toulouse (France) – Le Rex
19.03. Cognac (France) – Les Abattoirs
21.03. Bristol (UK) – SWX
22.03. Leeds (UK) – Stylus
23.03. Glasgow (UK) – SWG3
24.03. Birmingham (UK) – The Mill
26.03. Zwolle (The Netherlands) – Hedon
28.03. Copenhagen (Denmark) – Viften
29.03. Gothenburg (Sweden) – Stenhammarsalen
30.03. Oslo (Norway) – Cosmopolite
31.03. Stockholm (Sweden) – Kraken
02.04. Helsinki (Finland) – Nosturi
03.04. Jyväskylä (Finland) – Lutakko
04.04. Tampere (Finland) – Olympia
05.04. Tallinn (Estonia) – Rock Cafe
Tickets: https://riversideband.pl/en/gigsRIVERSIDE – Wasteland North American Tour 2019
05/03‬ Atlanta, GA, City Winery
‪05/04‬ Lake Park, FL, Kelsey Theater
‪05/06‬ Carrboro, NC, Cat’s Cradle
‪05/07‬ Baltimore, MD, Baltimore Soundstage
05/09 Jersey City, NJ, White Eagle Hall
05/10 Philadelphia, PA, World Cafe Live
05/11 Brooklyn, NY, Warsaw
‪05/12‬ Cambridge, MA, The Sinclair
‪05/14‬ Quebec City, QC, Imperial Bell
‪05/15‬ Montreal, QC, Club Soda
‪05/17‬ Toronto, ON, Mod Club
‪05/18‬ Detroit, MI, Magic Stick
‪05/19‬ Chicago, IL, Chop Shop &1st Ward
‪05/20 St.‬ Louis, MO, Delmar Hall
‪05/22‬ Dallas, TX, Gas Monkey Bar & Grill
‪05/24‬ Boulder, CO, Boulder Theater
‪05/25‬ Salt Lake City, UT, Metro Music Hall
‪05/27‬ Phoenix, AZ, Crescent Ballroom
‪05/28‬ Pomona, CA, The Glass House
‪05/29‬ San Francisco, CA, Slim’s
‪05/31‬ Portland, OR, Hawthorne Theatre
‪06/01‬ Vancouver, BC, The Rickshaw Theatre
‪06/02‬ Seattle, WA, The Crocodile

RIVERSIDE – Live 2019:
04.-09.02. Tampa to Key West & Cozumel – Cruise To The Edge
20.07. Maidstone (UK) – Ramblin’ Man Fair Festival
24.07. Worpswede (Germany) – Music Hall
25.07. Zoetermeer (The Netherlands) – De Boerderij
27.07. Breitenbach (Germany) – Burg Herzberg Festival
17.08. Bonn (Germany) – KUNST!RASEN Classic Rock Night festival + Jethro Tull & Fish

RIVERSIDE’s Mariusz Duda checked in with the following comment:
Soon, on March 6th, 2019, in Prague, we’re starting another leg of the “Wasteland Tour”, which promotes the album that’s extremely important to us. We know that a lot of you like it too, and we’d like to thank you here once again for putting “Wasteland” on your “best of 2018” lists. Riverside, however, are mostly a live band and we make up on stage for what was not quite as successful in the studio 😉 Therefore, we would love for you to see us during the upcoming spring leg of the tour!

And check out a newly launched video trailer for the “Wasteland Tour“ here:
https://youtu.be/8_k-vtzLv7g

Next to the standard edition as Jewelcase CD and Digital Album, “Wasteland“ is also available as limited edition Mediabook CD (with extended booklet, a bonus track radio edit version of “River Down Below“ and a set of 3 stickers) and as Gatefold 2LP (on 180gr. vinyl with the album on CD as bonus and an Etching of the D-Side).

Order “Wasteland“ in various formats from the IOM webstore here:
www.insideoutmusicshop.com
Or from other locations here: https://Riverside.lnk.to/Wasteland

Check out the three singles launched so far for “Wasteland”:
“Lament”: https://youtu.be/4Wqlts7QWA8
“River Down Below”: https://youtu.be/ZS1crIkpnwc
“Vale Of Tears”: https://youtu.be/001IMO53JwY

“Wasteland” entered various international charts upon release, including the following highest positions:
Poland: # 1, Poland / Vinyl: # 1, Germany: # 13, Germany / Download: # 42, The Netherlands: # 28, The Netherlands / Vinyl: # 12, Switzerland: # 23, Austria: # 39, UK: # 83, UK / Rock: # 2, UK / Vinyl: # 38,
Finland: # 30, France: # 97, Czech Republic: # 59, Belgium / Wallonia: # 79, Sweden / Physical: # 13, Sweden / Vinyl: # 8, USA / Current: # 106, USA / New Artist: # 17 and USA / Overall: # 147

Bryan’s Best of 2018

Earlier this year, I questioned whether or not 2018 was going to be a poor year for prog. It seemed like the the progressive rock community took a few months to stop and take a collective breath… but that was only the breath before the plunge. The second half of the year saw many excellent new releases. The following are some of my favorites from 2018, in no particular order (my top two at the bottom of this list are tied for first place).

Continue reading “Bryan’s Best of 2018”

Riverside Live in North America — Coming May 2019

From Riverside’s website:

“Dear friends from US and Canada. Will you find time to see us in May 2019? We have a great pleasure to announce all these dates and places.

North America Wasteland Tour 2019:

  • 05/03‬ Atlanta, GA, City Winery
  • ‪05/04‬ Lake Park, FL, Kelsey Theater
  • ‪05/06‬ Carrboro, NC, Cat’s Cradle
  • 05/07‬ Baltimore, MD, Baltimore Soundstage
  • 05/09 Jersey City, NJ, White Eagle Hall
  • 05/10 Philadelphia, PA, World Cafe Live
  • 05/11 Brooklyn, NY, Warsaw
  • 05/12‬ Cambridge, MA, The Sinclair
  • ‪05/14‬ Quebec City, QC, Imperial Bell
  • 05/15‬ Montreal, QC, Club Soda
  • 05/17‬ Toronto, ON, Mod Club
  • 05/18‬ Detroit, MI, Magic Stick
  • ‪05/19‬ Chicago, IL, Chop Shop &1st Ward
  • 05/20 St.‬ Louis, MO, Delmar Hall
  • 05/22‬ Dallas, TX, Gas Monkey Bar & Grill
  • 05/24‬ Boulder, CO, Boulder Theater
  • 05/25‬ Salt Lake City, UT, Metro Music Hall
  • ‪05/27‬ Phoenix, AZ, Crescent Ballroom
  • 05/28‬ Pomona, CA, The Glass House
  • 05/29‬ San Francisco, CA, Slim’s
  • ‪05/31‬ Portland, OR, Hawthorne Theatre
  • ‪06/01‬ Vancouver, BC, The Rickshaw Theatre
  • 06/02‬ Seattle, WA, The Crocodile

See you there!”