Steve Hackett – Genesis Greats, Lamb Highlights & Solo

Legendary guitarist Steve Hackett announces the dates for his 2024 UK tour: Steve Hackett – Genesis Greats, Lamb Highlights & Solo.  The tour takes in 15 dates across the UK culminating with a visit to London’s Royal Albert Hall on Wednesday 23rd October. To mark the 50th anniversary of The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway, Hackett is including a selection of highlights from this iconic Genesis album. Tickets go on sale on Friday 29th September at 10am https://myticket.co.uk/artists/steve-hackett   

Steve Hackett’s timeless guitar-work was woven throughout Genesis’ classic 70’s catalogue of albums. In recent years he and his outstanding touring line-up of Roger King (keyboards), Nad Sylvan (vocals), Jonas Reingold (bass, backing vocals), Rob Townsend (saxophone, flutes, additional keyboards) and Craig Blundell (drums) have brought many of these albums back to the concert hall to great acclaim. Special guest, Amanda Lehmann will be joining the whole of the UK tour on guitar and vocals.  Many fans have also been asking for more tracks from The Lamb to be included. What better way to celebrate half-a-century of this remarkable album than to include a selection of Lamb Highlights alongside some of Hackett’s finest solo work and unmissable Genesis Greats.

“I’m hugely looking forward to the 2024 UK tour,” says Steve Hackett, “including ‘The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway’ favourites as well as other iconic Genesis numbers along with solo gems. It’ll also be exciting to return to the wonderful Royal Albert Hall!”

Steve Hackett – Genesis Greats, Lamb Highlights & Solo tour dates 2024:

Wed 2nd October                  Aylesbury      Friars Waterside         

Thurs 3rd October                 Portsmouth   Guildhall 

Sat 5th October                     Bristol             Beacon 

Sun 6th October                    Cambridge    Corn Exchange 

Mon 7th October                   Birmingham   Symphony Hall

Wed 9th October                   Liverpool        Philharmonic

Thurs 10th October             Cardiff            St David’s Hall

Sat 12th October                   Guildford        G Live

Sun 13th October                  Stoke              Victoria Hall

Tue 15th October                  York                Barbican 

Wed 16th October               Nottingham   Royal Concert Hall 

Fri 18th October                    Glasgow        Royal Concert Hall 

Sat 19th October                  Gateshead    Glasshouse

Sun 20th October                  Manchester   Bridgewater Hall

Tue 22nd October                 Reading         Hexagon

Wed 23rd October               London          Royal Albert Hall 

Tickets go on sale on Friday 29th September at 10am.  https://myticket.co.uk/artists/steve-hackett

About Steve Hackett

Steve Hackett joined Genesis at the beginning of 1971 and gained an international reputation as the guitarist in the band’s classic line-up alongside Peter Gabriel, Tony Banks, Mike Rutherford and Phil Collins. Hackett’s intricate guitar work was a key element of Genesis’ albums from Nursery Cryme (1971) to Wind And Wuthering (1977) including the iconic Selling England By The Pound.

After leaving Genesis at the end of 1977, Hackett’s solo career, which now spans more than 30 albums, has demonstrated his extraordinary versatility with both electric and acoustic guitar. Hackett is renowned as both an immensely talented and innovative rock musician and a virtuoso classical guitarist and composer and this was recognised in 2010 when he was inducted into the Rock And Rock Hall Of Fame. He has also worked alongside Steve Howe of YES in the supergroup GTR.

Hackett’s compositions take influences from many genres, including jazz, classical and blues. For his studio works The Night Siren (2017) and At The Edge Of Light (2019) Hackett has also explored the influences of world music. Recent tours have seen Hackett celebrate his time with Genesis including a spectacular 2018 tour in which he realised a long-held ambition to perform the works of Genesis live with his band and an orchestra. 

The lockdown enforced by the 2020 global pandemic has proven to be a particularly creative period for Hackett. He began by releasing Selling England by the Pound & Spectral Mornings: Live at Hammersmith, a live recording of 2019’s hugely successful tour celebrating that Genesis classic together with the 40th anniversary of one of his most-loved solo albums. Lockdown also gave Hackett the opportunity to write and record two new studio albums in 2021: the UK Classical Chart hit Under A Mediterranean Sky and the hit rock album Surrender of Silence.

Hackett and his band enjoyed a return to touring with Genesis Revisited – Seconds Out + More! (2021) and Genesis Revisited – Foxtrot At Fifty (2022). Subsequently, the live album Genesis Revisited – Seconds Out + More!, released in 2022, became Hackett’s most successful-ever live album reaching number 28 in the UK Album Chart and achieving highest-ever chart positions in several European countries.  He recently released the live album from the 2022 tour – Foxtrot at Fifty + Hackett Highlights – Live in Brighton.   Hackett takes the Foxtrot at Fifty Tour to the USA from 3rd October through to 18th November.

STEVE HACKETT Online:

www.hackettsongs.com

 www.facebook.com/pages/Steve-Hackett/123101228589

 www.twitter.com/HackettOfficial

http://hackettsongs.com/tour.html

Mariusz Duda Unveils New Album ‘AFR AI D’, Out November 17th Via Kscope

Riverside mastermind Mariusz Duda returns with fourth solo album ‘AFR AI D’ out November 17th via Kscope. 

Mariusz Duda has always been fascinated by the telling of a story, idea or concept.

Whereas on previous album ‘Lockdown Trilogy’, Mariusz Duda wanted to capture a snapshot of life during the pandemic the renown progressive mastermind, this time explores the concept of AI as disruptor. His new solo record looks at the growing commodification of AI and specifically with artificial intelligence entering the mainstream.

Using the notion of ChatGPT and Midjourney and the increasing use of deep fakes as a springboard, ‘AFR AI D’ explores these interesting and forward thinking theories musically just as much as it does conceptually.

Unveiling ‘AFR AI D’ first single ‘Embracing The Unknown’ the track is the longest composition on the album and a fitting representative. The changing musical moods and rhythm are characteristic not only of the new album but of all Mariusz Duda music released under his own name.

“I’m happy I can continue this instrumental electronic music journey,” says Duda.

“I love these evocative sounds. Contrary to what the title of the album suggests, I am not afraid of new technologies. I think AI is just another tool which, over time, we will learn to use in a better way, and which will speed up work in many areas. In spite of a slight subconscious fear of the unknown, I am ready to embrace the future :)”

He’s also shared a video for first single  ‘Embracing The Unknown’ which you can view now: 

The album opens with the ominous sounds of the aptly titled ‘Taming Nightmares’ acting as a musical signpost to this new dawn of machine learning. It’s followed by Interstellar nod of ‘Fake Me Deep, Murf’ and later by the TRON like ‘Mid Journey To Freedom’.

Off the back of ‘Bots’ Party’ we move into the emotive arpeggios of ‘I Love To Chat With You’ that whisks you straight into the mind of Theodore Twombly falling for an operating system. The album later ends on the cold and unfeeling introspection of ‘Embracing The Unknown’.

In a world where truth is often camouflaged by deception the electronic heartbeat of ‘AFR AI D’ can never lie. Or can it?

AFR AI D’ Track listing:  

1. Taming Nightmares [07:20] 

 2. Good Morning Fearmongering [05:14]  

3. Fake Me Deep, Murf [04:48] 

4. Bots’ Party [05:00]  

5. I Love To Chat With You [03:43] 

6. Why So Serious, Cassandra? [04:56] 

7. Mid Journey To Freedom [03:08]  

8. Embracing The Unknown [08:00] 

German artist and illustrator Hajo Müller (Steven Wilson) appears once again carrying on the legacy of Mariusz Duda’s artwork as the two have collaborated throughout Mariusz’s solo album career. Mariusz also performs all instruments throughout the album except for guitar solos performed by Mateusz Owczarek 

‘AFR AI D’ was recorded throughout May and June 2023 at Serakos Studio in Warszawa, with engineering by Magda and Robert Srzedniccy and mastered by Robert Szydło.

The album is available in a variety of formats that include LP, Magenta LP, CD and Digital. 

Pre-order HERE (https://MariuszDudaKscope.lnk.to/AFR_AI_D)

About Mariusz Duda:

Mariusz Duda is a Polish musician, songwriter, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist. The leader of the progressive rock band Riverside, and the founder of the solo project Lunatic Soul. His musical interests span from rock and metal, through pop and folk, to electronic and ambient music.

The Mommyheads unveil new album Coney Island Kid

Prog-pop cult heroes The Mommyheads have announced the most ambitious album of their nearly four-decade career, CONEY ISLAND KID, arriving Friday, September 19 via FANFAR! Records in Europe and Mommyhead Music for the rest of the world. Pre-orders are available now.

A watershed release for The Mommyheads, CONEY ISLAND KID marks the venerable NYC-based band’s 15th studio LP and first-ever foray into concept album terrain. Highlights include the idiosyncratic first single, “Why Aren’t You Smiling,” joined by an official music video, directed by The Mommyheads founder/frontman Adam Elk.

WATCH “WHY AREN’T YOU SMILING” OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO:

PRE-ORDER CONEY ISLAND KID

Last year saw The Mommyheads reaching new creative heights with GENIUS KILLER, hailed by Bay Area alternative newsweekly The Bohemian as “a tight, self-assured affair that sounds all the more youthful for its maturity.” CONEY ISLAND KID continues in that tradition, opening with an eclectic suite of technicolor prog-pop that uses archetypal Coney Island imagery to convey themes of desperation and soul-searching, complete with pier side ambience.

The skeletal acoustics on “Spookarama” call back to the whimsical woodsy gloom of 1989’s now-classic debut, ACORN, while elsewhere, songs such as the epic title track (arguably the closest the band has come to full-on interpolating Genesis) and the angelic tone poem, “Onset, MA,” see The Mommyheads continue to gracefully channel existential anxiety and progressive influences in equal measure. Having devoted a lifetime to evolution, both in terms of sound and the ever-increasing scope of their ideas, CONEY ISLAND KID stands as perhaps the most cohesive representation of The Mommyheads’ glorious eccentricities thus far.

THE MOMMYHEADS
CONEY ISLAND KID
(FANFAR! Records / Mommyhead Music)
Release Date: Friday, September 19, 2023

Tracklist:
Coney Island Kid
Artificial Island
Spookarama
Solemn By The Sea
Suburban Office Park
Learning To Live
Why Aren’t You Smiling
Such Beautiful Things
Onset, MA
Soul’s Aquarium

The Mommyheads will mark CONEY ISLAND KID with a wide range of international live dates, including a series of historic shows joining longtime friend Per Sunding of Swedish indie pop legends Eggstone on his debut US live tour. The dates – which will see Sunding performing Eggstone music in America for the very first time ever, backed by members of The Mommyheads, The Apples in Stereo, and The B-52s – get underway September 20 with a special record release show at New York City’s DROM. Long beloved in Sweden, The Mommyheads will first head to Scandinavia for an eagerly anticipated headline tour (including additional dates with Sunding), before returning home for Drom30, Dromedary Records’ weekend-long celebration of independent rock, set for Sunday, September 17 at Catskill, NY’s The Avalon Lounge. Additional shows will be announced soon. For updates, please visit www.mommyheads.com/live.

THE MOMMYHEADS – TOUR 2023

SEPTEMBER
1 – Uppsala, SWE – Open Mind Records (12:00 Noon Acoustic Show)
1 – Orebro, SWE – Live At Heart Festival *
2 – Linköping, SWE – Festival Of The Midnight Sun *
5 – Falsterbro, Sweden – Ko Operativet På Fädriften †
6 – Malmo, SWE – Medley †
7 – Kristianstad, SWE – Kulturkvarteret
8 – Stockholm, SWE – Melody Box
9 – Vasteras, SWE – Global Living
17 – Catskill, NY – Drom30 @ The Avalon Lounge *
20 – New York, NY – DROM †
21 – Boston, MA – Lizard Lounge #
22 – Beacon, NY – Howland Cultural Center †
23 – Philadelphia, PA – The Royal in Glenside †
24 – Washington, DC – House of Sweden †
 
* Festival Appearance
† w/ Per Sunding of Eggstone
# w/ Per Sunding of Eggstone and Gravel Pit
 

US-based Prog Metal group Nospūn share video for “Earwyrm” from debut album Opus

Hailing from North Carolina’s music scene, new progressive metal quartet Nospūn have released one of the year’s most surprising albums.  The band’s stunning debut, Opus, is a sonic journey that combines intricate melodies and powerful rhythms, creating something utterly breathtaking.  Showcasing stellar musicianship and vocals, Nospūn have made the progressive metal world take notice.

Today, the band are pleased to share the video for the track “Earwyrm.”

The band explain the single: “Every great concept album still needs a song that can stand on its own, even without the context of the rest of the album to support it. We wrote “Earwyrm” to fulfill that role on Opus. It’s shorter than the more epic tracks and has lots of energy, but it still contains that grandiose vibe that the rest of the album has. Because of that, it was easily our first choice for a music video.”

The band had this to say about the response to the album so far: “The response we’ve received for Opus has been so affirming. When you work on an album for seven years, it becomes easy to lose the sense of whether people outside the band bubble will enjoy it, so it’s a huge relief to see that they do. And it’s just a great feeling to wake up every day and see someone new saying they just found our album and are loving it!”

Tracklisting:
1.The House at the End 01:53
2.Implosion Overture 05:14
3.The Death of Simpson 09:10
4.Dance With Me! 03:48
5.Tougher Love 02:56
6.Earwyrm 05:21
7….And Then There Was One 07:16
8.4D Printing 06:42
9.Within the Realm of Possibility 15:23
10.Back, Yet Forward 09:18
11.The House at the Beginning 03:57

Nospūn are:
Phillip Rich – Vocals
James Nelson – Guitars
Cole Millward – Bass
Paul Wood – Drums

The Flower Kings unveils a new music video for the impactful and inspiring anthem “The Dream”

Look At You Now will be released on September 8th via InsideOutMusic

New Single “The Dream” premieres today!

Pre-Order Look At You Now!

Prog Rock legends The Flower Kings have announced their return with their 16th studio album Look At You Now, out on September 8th. Nearing 30 years as a band, the group once again embraces vintage vibes and the warm, inviting sounds reminiscent of legendary and classic 70’s albums. Look At You Now is a stunning collection that will transport you to a bygone era of rock with swirling synths & guitars and thematic long-form pieces.

The Dream” their newest song can be listened to HERE.

The video by Video 12InchMedia can be seen here:

Pre-Order Look At You Now here: https://TheFlowerKings.lnk.to/LookAtYouNow

Roine comments on the new single: The Dream”- our new single is actually created from a real-life dream – I woke up from a dream before 6 one morning – remembering the melody and main vocal idea – so I got up, turned on my music ’studio’ and laid down the basic chord and melody of it – singing bare-bones lyrics – just to be sure to remember it.

This song is about hope for a better world – came from a dream. Sometimes you get a feel for something that might be “important” – like your subconscious telling you what to do. Once we got to pick songs for the album both Michael and Hasse were insisting this anthem was an important song that need be on this album. We’ll see if they’re right.” 

Look At You Now Tracklist:

1.     Beginner’s Eyes 

2.     The Dream 

3.     Hollow Man 

4.     Dr. Ribedeaux 

5.     Mother Earth 

6.     The Queen 

7.     The Light in Your Eyes

8.     Seasons End 

9.     Scars 

10.  Stronghold 

11.  Father Sky 

12.  Day For Peace 

13.  Look At You Now

Pre-order Look At You Now now at: https://TheFlowerKings.lnk.to/LookAtYouNow

The album will be available in the following versions:

·       Ltd. CD 6-Panel Digipak

·       Ltd. Gatefold Black 2LP 180g Vinyl

·       Ltd. Gatefold Transp. Orange/Black Marbled 2LP 180g Vinyl – Limited to only 500 copies 

·       Ltd. Gatefold Transp. Blue 2LP 180g Vinyl – Limited to only 300 copies

·       Ltd. Gatefold Transp. Sunflower Yellow 2LP 180g Vinyl – Limited to only 300 copies

·       Digital Album

Pre-order Look At You Now now HERE

Remember to catch The Flower Kings on their upcoming EU Autumn Tour: 

The Flower Kings line-up:

Roine Stolt – Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards, Percussion 

Hasse Fröberg – Vocals 

Michael Stolt – Bass, Vocals, Keyboards (Track 5), Guitar (Track 5) 

Mirko Demaio – Drums, Percussion, Keyboard (Track 12)

With:

Hasse Bruniusson – Percussion (Track 3) 

Lalle Larsson – Synthesizers (Tracks 4,9) 

Jannica Lund – Backing Vocal (Tracks 1,2,3,5,7,11,13) 

Marjana Semkina – Vocal (Track 12) 

Jörgen Sälde – Nylon Guitar (Track 6)

MOLYBARON release new single “Breakdown” from upcoming new album SOMETHING OMINOUS

Something Ominous will be released on the 15th September (InsideOutMusic) / Touring Europe with SOEN in September/October.

Album pre-order begins today!

French/Irish alternative rock-metal outfit MOLYBARON, known for their energetic, hard-hitting sound, will release their new album Something Ominous on September 15th on InsideOutMusic/Sony Music. The announcement of the new album comes following the success of the recent single and video “Something Ominous.”

Over the course of two subtly radical records, 2017’s self-titled debut and 2021’s acclaimed The Mutiny, this eclectic quartet have casually bent and broken all the usual rules of modern heaviness. 

In 2023, they return with their third and most fervently diverse record to date, Something Ominous: further evidence that MOLYBARON are operating in a field of precisely one. 

When MOLYBARON released The Mutiny in 2021, the world was still reeling from the effects of a global pandemic. Nonetheless, the album struck its mark with ease, garnering countless glowing reviews and comparisons to the likes of System Of A Down, Tool and Muse. Two years on, Something Ominous reveals a band that have sharpened their focus and found their groove. Comprising ten succinct and characterful songs, which range from thunderous acts of aggression to noirish, mutant balladry, MOLYBARON’s third full-length is invigorating and immersive in equal measure.

“I don’t think our sound can be defined by one genre,” says guitarist/vocalist Gary Kelly .“It’s certainly not by design. I write and produce all the music in the band, but I’m strange – I never really listen to music. I have no idea what’s hot or what’s not these daysI suppose this makes it easier for me to create songs, I’m not trying to mirror any one style, I just write as it comes to meprobably based on what I hear floating in the ether; in the cinema, on the TV, on the elevator, it really doesn’t matter!” 

MOLYBARON are also pleased to share the second single from the album. 

You can check out the lyric video for “Breakdown” here:

“Breakdown” is a heavy, pop-tinged track, with lyrics conveying the struggle of a mind on the edge of collapse, capturing a sense of isolation, confusion, and vulnerability that accompanies these dark moments. A rousing, emotional mix of melodies, driven by aggressive guitar riffs, crushing bass, and electronic synth-scapes, “Breakdown” is invigorating and immersive in equal measure. 

The album is available for pre-order now here:

https://molybaron.lnk.to/SomethingOminous

Tracklisting:

1 Something Ominous 4:07

2 Set Alight 3:26

3 Billion Dollar Shakedown 3:39

4 Breakdown 3:17

5 Anyway 4:15

6 Daylight Dies In Darkness 4:07

7 Dead On Arrival 3:22

8 Pendulum 3:35

9 Reality Show 4:18

10 Vampires 3:46

SOMETHING OMINOUS comes as CD in sleeve pack, 180g black LP in 12’’ inch vinyl sleeve and digital album.

Check out the video for the previous single “Something Ominous” here:

In addition, MOLBYARON will support SOEN on their upcoming MEMORIAL TOUR 2023 in Europe, starting September 20th

Formed in Paris, early 2015, by Dublin-born singer/guitarist Gary Kelly, MOLYBARON have become one of the most talked-about bands in the modern metal scene.

Fusing together elements of alt rock, hard rock, and modern metal to create an eclectic, sonically dynamic experience, MOLYBARON deliver an intensely raw, original musical signature, appealing to fans across the genres.

MOLYBARON are:

Gary Kelly – Guitar/Vocals

Florian Soum – Lead Guitar

Sébastien de Saint-Angel – Bass

Camille Greneron – Drums

Progressive fusion ensemble Unitopia announce new studio album Seven Chambers – Pre-Orders start today!

Founded by vocalist/songwriter Mark “Truey” Trueack (United Progressive Fraternity) and multi-instrumentalist Sean Timms (Southern Empire,DamanekUPF) in 1996, Australian progressive fusion Unitopia have always been among the most renowned and distinctive bands of their ilk and era. Now the band is pleased to announce the new studio album Seven Chambers, due out on August 25th, 2023.

Unitopia has undoubtedly reached new creative, emotional, and intellectual heights with their latest opus, Seven Chambers (their first original collection on independent label Progrock.com’s Essentials). Comprised of seven tracks and lasting just over eighty minutes, it’s an incredible journey that finds Unitopiareturning at the peak of their artistic and technical prowess. 

Pre-orders for the digital and physical editions are now available via the following outlets:
Progrock.com‘s Essentials (https://essentials.progrock.com)
Burning Shed (https://burningshed.com/tag/Unitopia)
Just for Kicks Music (https://justforkicks.de/en/)
White Knight Records (https://www.whiteknightshop2.co.uk/)
Unitopia’s Bandcamp page (https://unitopia.bandcamp.com/)

Plus, multiple color variations are available for the physical versions, as well as a special vinyl edition that features a die-cut cover revealing a portion of the sleeve behind it!

Tracklist:
  1. “Broken Heart” (8:30)
  2. “Something Invisible” (6:39)
  3. “Bittersweet” (7:20)
  4. “Mania” (12:29)
  5. “The Stroke of Midnight” (9:38)
  6. “Helen” (19:14)
  7. “The Uncertain” (18:33)

As the follow-up to 2010’s Artificial and 2012’s Covered Mirror Vol. 1 – Smooth as Silk (a superb assortment of classic/prog rock reinterpretations), Seven Chambers is Unitopia’s first new outing in over a decade. During the interim, each member kept busy with various other projects, and according to Progrock.com‘s Essentials’ Mark Monforti, the method of getting the group going again was endearingly fortuitous:

“A few years ago, Steve Hackett was exploring studios and players for a show in Australia, and he contacted Timms about using the studio that he and Truey still owned. That got Sean and Truey talking about possibly working on new music together. Then, I reached out to them about doing some shows. They went exceedingly well, which sort of solidified the fact that Unitopia needed to come back.”

With Timms and Trueack reunited, the duo decided to expand Unitopia by bringing in fellow UPF maestro Steve Unruh, guitarist Dr. John Greenwood, drummer Chester Thompson (Frank ZappaWeather ReportGenesis) and bassist Alphonso Johnson (Weather ReportSantanaDavid Gilmour).

Seven Chambers is a globe-spanning effort that began in 2021, with virtually every member working in their own studio in either America or Australia. Although things got off to a strong start, a few unexpected hiccups somewhat impeded the band’s headway.

“Progress was severely interrupted by Sean’s other commitments, such as moving into a renovated house and being in-demand with other projects and festivals. Then, Truey and Chester faced personal hardships. At more than one stage, it looked like the record might never happen. Luckily, the delays led to a few solo projects blossoming, and suddenly, our schedules began clearing in early 2023 and we began moving at a real pace again,” Steve Unruhexplains.

Thus, Seven Chambers is truly a testament to Unitopia’s chemistry and commitment, not only because it sees them triumphing over those setbacks but because it ended up being roughly twice as long as the original 40-minute plan (without a moment of filler!)

The band already have a few dates lined up which you can see here:

2023 Tour Dates:
3 Sept. – 2Days Prog + 1, Veruno Novara, Italy
5 Sept. – Konzertfabrik Z7, Pratteln, Switzerland
9 Sept. – Neuberinhaus, Reichenbach im Vogtland, Germany
13 Sept. – Colos-Saal, Aschaffenburg, Germany
14 Sept. – Poppodium Boerderij, Zoetermeer, Netherlands
15 Sept. – Chez Paulette Pub Rock, Pagney derrière Barine, France
8 Oct. – ProgStock, Rutherford, New Jersey, USA

Unitopia:
Mark “Truey” Trueack – vocals, songwriting
Sean Timms – songwriting, keyboards, backing vocals, various stringed instruments
Steve Unruh – songwriting, backing vocals, violin, flute, rhythm guitars, mandolin
John Greenwood – songwriting, backing vocals, lead electric guitar, nylon-strung guitar, 6 and 12-string acoustic guitars, mandolin, programmed orchestration
Chester Thompson – drums
Alphonso Johnson – bass
 

Prog Ensemble District 97 Announce New Album Stay For The Ending and Launch The Opening of Pre-orders

Spirit of Unicorn Music are delighted to announce a brand new album from District 97, Stay For The Ending, pre-orders for which have opened today.

Featuring 10 brand new tracks, the album is the culmination of everything this Chicago-based prog rock ensemble has worked towards during their last 15 years. Formed in Autumn 2006, the band draws influences from a diverse array of musical styles, from heavy metal to avant-garde jazz. This broad appreciation of musical genres has continued to inform the band’s latest work and sees them further develop their sound and songwriting to ambitious new levels: upping their game in the areas of composition, performance, arrangement, production and sonics.

Stay For The Ending traverses a vast array of themes with songs exploring the human condition: unity, division, deceit, obsession, detachment, resilience and transcendence. Drummer and Percussionist JONATHAN SCHANG said, “After 15 years of leading District 97, I’m thrilled that we continue to push ourselves to new heights in every realm of our music making. This is the strongest collection of songs we’ve ever assembled.”

The album has been recorded, mixed and mastered by NOAM WALLENBERG (ALAN PARSONS, MAC MILLER). Lead vocalist LESLIE HUNT (AMERICAN IDOL FEMALE VOCAL FINALIST 2007) commented, “This record represents us at our most collaborative and dynamic.  We tried some new things and chased different aesthetics than we have in the past and I think the result is our best sounding album to date with some of our strongest compositions.”

Friend of the band, BILL BRUFORD (KING CRIMSON, YES, GONG, BRUFORD) agrees. In response to hearing the new album, he said, “Quality, expertise and passion – ‘Stay For The Ending’ is a massive piece, of which District ’97 should feel justly proud.”

The Autumn sees the band undertake a number of live shows in the US and Europe, including playing The Bedford in Balham, South London on Sunday 10th September.  SCHANG continues “I can’t wait for the music world at large to hear it both on record and on stage.”

The album can be pre-ordered from Cherry Red Records here:
https://www.cherryred.co.uk/product/district-97-stay-for-the-ending-cd/

DISTRICT 97 ARE:
Vocals: Leslie Hunt
Keyboards: Andrew Lawrence
Guitars, Vocals: Jim Tashjian
Bass Guitar: Tim Seisser
Drums & Percussion: Jonathan Schang

TRACK LISTING
Stay For The Ending
Mirror
Many New Things
Crossover
Divided We Fall
Life Cycle
X
X-Faded
Deck Is Stacked
The Watcher

TOUR DATES
18th August – Martyrs’, Chicago, Illinois, USA
2nd September – 2 Days + 1 Festival, Veruno, Italy
7th September – Das Rind, Russelsheim, Germany
8th/9th September – Steve Rothery Band Weekend, Poppodium Boerderij, Zoetemeer, Netherlands
10th September – A Sunday in September, The Bedford, London

JOHN WETTON – ‘AN EXTRAORDINARY LIFE’ – 8CD box set to be released on 24th November, 2023

On 24th November the first in a series of box sets commemorating the life and music of one of the UK`s most extraordinary and prolific musicians, John Wetton, will be released.  

The An Extraordinary Life box set contains 8 newly remastered CDs, featuring the six solo albums Wetton released between 1980 and 2011. Each album now includes special bonus tracks.  Additionally, two further discs are included which feature a gold mine of rare, live and unreleased material from the vaults, compiled by John`s archivist, Rick Nelson.

Check out trailer for the box set here:

Housed in a sumptuous 12” by 12” box, this set includes a 64-page book with an introduction by legendary artist, Roger Dean and contains comprehensive sleeve notes by Nick Shilton, author of Wetton’s biography, ‘An Extraordinary Life’, published earlier this year. The book also features a raft of photographs taken from the Wetton archive and has been designed by John’s long-time friend, Michael Inns. 

This whole project has been lovingly crafted and compiled with the full blessing of John`s son Dylan and his wife Lisa and is endorsed by the Wetton estate. 

With a career spanning more than four decades, John Wetton`s rich baritone voice and accomplished bass playing has adorned many recordings. In this ‘An Extraordinary Life’ his extensive solo career is captured for posterity all in one sumptuous box set, making this a fitting tribute to one of the UK most loved and respected artists.

An Extraordinary Life

DISC 1: Caught in The Crossfire (1980)

DISC 2: Battle Lines (1994)

DISC 3: Arkangel (1997)

DISC 4: Welcome to Heaven (2000)

DISC 5: Rock of Faith (2003)

DISC 6: Raised in Captivity (2011)

DISC 7: New Live and Unreleased Tracks

DISC 8: New Live and Unreleased Tracks

ABOUT JOHN WETTON

John Wetton has a unique please in British music history.  In a glittering career spanning more than 40 years, Wetton was a member of several influential and much-loved bands including, Family, King Crimson, Uriah Heep, Wishbone Ash, Roxy Music, UK, Asia and Icon.  He also appeared on a host of albums as a guest artist or session player, including for Bryan Ferry, Steve Hackett, Brian Eno, Renaissance and Galahad.  In addition, Wetton had an extensive and accomplished solo career.

Pre-Order link:

https://www.cherryred.co.uk/?post_type=product&p=1056834&preview=true

CAT NO: SOUMBOX003

Official Website: www.johnwetton.co.uk

Big Big Train sign worldwide deal with InsideOutMusic

Big Big Train | Trieste, May 2023 | ph Massimo Goina

InsideOut Music is delighted to announce that it has signed Big Big Train to a multi-album deal for new studio releases. The band are currently working on a new studio album, expected to be released in spring 2024, and have recently been recording in Trieste, Italy, where lead vocalist Alberto Bravin is based.

Big Big Train bassist/founder Gregory Spawton comments: “We have ambitious plans for Big Big Train and are very pleased to have signed this deal with InsideOut. Having run our own record label, English Electric Recordings, for a lengthy period, it’s clear that the music industry has changed enormously in recent years and we believe that we are best positioned to grow BBT further by becoming an InsideOut band. Over the last decade we had received offers from various labels. When we considered the different options, signing up with the premier label for progressive music was the logical choice. We’re very excited about this new era for the band and working with InsideOut/Sony.”

Drummer Nick D’Virgilio adds: It’s an absolute thrill for me that Big Big Train has become an InsideOut band. Over the years, previously as member of Spock’s Beard and more recently alongside Neal Morse and Ross Jennings, I’ve worked extensively with Thomas Waber and his team at InsideOut/Sony. From experience I know that there is no better label for Big Big Train to be working with. It’s wonderful to join a roster that includes the biggest names in the prog genre such as Dream Theater, Steve Hackett, Jethro Tull, Kansas, Devin Townsend and Yes. We’ve got a lot of new Big Big Train music in the works and with InsideOut’s unrivalled reach across the progressive rock world we hope to reach plenty of folks who may not be familiar with us yet.”

Label head Thomas Waber comments: “We have been in talks with the band for a while and are happy that we can finally announce our partnership. Big Big Train have been proudly carrying the flag for progressive music, and we look forward to helping them on their very bright journey ahead. We are all excited to be stepping on board this particular train!”

Check out a teaser of brand new music here:

In parallel with this deal with InsideOut, Big Big Train will continue to run their English Electric Recordings label and expect to commence a re-issue campaign for previous studio BBT albums in late 2024.

Big Big Train’s latest album, Ingenious Devices, was released on 30th June 2023 (CD, 2LP black and 2 LP sky blue vinyl; Bandcamp) and is available to stream.

The band will embark on their most extensive ever tour in August and September this year, with 17 shows taking place across 9 countries. Big Big Train will also be on board Cruise To The Edge in March 2024. Find the full list of dates in 2023 below:

24th August – The Court Theatre, Tring, UK (warm-up show)

26th August – Cultuurpodium Boerderij, Zoetermeer, The Netherlands

27th August – Markthalle, Hamburg, Germany

28th August – Stora Teatern, Gothenburg, Sweden

29th August – Cosmopolite, Oslo, Norway

30th August – Fryshuset Klubben, Stockholm, Sweden

31st August – Viften, Copenhagen, Denmark

2nd September – 2 Days Prog + 1 Festival, Revislate, Italy

3rd September – Z7, Pratteln, Switzerland

5th September – Neuberinhaus, Reichenbach, Germany

6th September – Victoria Carlswerk, Cologne, Germany

7th September – Colos-Saal, Aschaffenburg, Germany

8th September – Mozart-Saal, Stuttgart, Germany

10th September – Queens Hall, Edinburgh, UK

11th September – Town Hall, Birmingham, UK

12th September – Cadogan Hall, London, UK

13th September – Cadogan Hall, London, UK