q207 music

51llr-udbPL._AA240_.jpg Now that we are well into Q307 I guess I should finally post my Q207 music release review (Q107 here). This was a very prolific quarter…especially for my favorite prog/metal bands…

Marillion – Somewhere Else The problem with putting out an instant masterpiece like 2004’s Marbles is that you then have to follow it up with something. This was a let down for me but does have a few nice bits including the title track, A Voice From The Past, and No Such Thing.

Porcupine Tree – Fear of a Blank Planet This was another very solid effort from Steve Wilson and his crew. I especially like the extended heaviness in Anesthetize. This will be in my list of tops for the year for sure.

Alison Krauss – A Hundred Miles Or More A Collection Ms. Krauss is definitely one of my guilty pleasures. She is cute, has the most beautiful voice, can play the fiddle, and surrounds herself with top-notch bluegrass musicians. This release is a collection of previously released solo material that will do fine as I wait for her current collaboration with non other than Robert Plant!

Nine Inch Nails – Year Zero OK who else has NIN and Alison Krauss in their reviews? I think this was a fine release but I keep having the feeling that Trent is just re-hashing the same material again and again. This release does win the prize for the best marketing campaign…anyone who creates a full ARG is fine by me.

Symphony X – Paradise Lost This one just made it into the quarter…another over-the-top symphonic metal release from the band that for me most symbolizes the genre. The music is a bit heavier than previous releases and the CD packaging is simply gorgeous.

Pelican – City of Echoes This is nice instrumental post-rock release that switches smoothly between heavy/distorted/detuned and plinky/acoustic guitars. Very listenable.

David Torn – Prezens David is one of my favorite guitar players. His album (yes I bought it originally on vinyl) Cloud About Mercury with Mark Isham, Tony Levin and Bill Bruford is a true classic. This album has a bit more straight-ahead jazzy sound in some of the tracks, but David’s signature atmospheric/ambient/looping/squeals is all still there.

Blonde Redhead – 23 Thanks to Ohmpark I still listen to a bit more than just progressive metal…this is a nice release from a trip-hoppy “alternative rock” band with lots of nice melody and catchy tunes. I’ll have to investigate this band a little further.

Sleepy Time Gorilla Museum – In Glorious Times This falls into that category of “how-can-anyone-make-this-kind-of-music- I-can’t-believe-what-I-am-hearing- do-I-really-like-this?” It certainly deserve more than one listen…

Rush – Snakes & Arrows A very good release from a band that is partly responsible for my interest in progressive rock. I talked about them a few posts ago…this release is very good with the right balance between instrumental and vocal material.

Kamelot – Ghost Opera Thanks to DavidK I picked this one up…what a gem. Like Symphony X, Kamelot is excelling at symphonic progressive metal with this release. I was not that excited about previous releases I had heard from them but this one has some great hooks and some real heavy metal.

Dream Theater – Systematic Chaos Here is another band like P Tree that seems to be in a great groove right now putting out a number of solid releases in a row. Systematic Chaos does not disappoint. Besides the split extended piece In the Presence of Enemies, I really like Repentance that is a continuation of their delving into the substance abuse themes…another great heavy release for this quarter.

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