Archives: Symphonic Prog : Shadow Circus – On a Dark and Stormy Night

On a Dark and Stormy NightOk so maybe I have to reconsider my approach to music listening when it comes to Prog Rock. Typically, I listen to an album and then go and find out about the artist and their music. With Prog Rock I think it is most time wise to visit their site and read about the album BEFORE listening! You see many prog rock artist don’t create songs, they create albums many times concept albums and even when it’s not a concept album the tracks often are based on something!! This became clear with my latest listen, On a Dark and Stormy Night from the band Shadow Circus. Now if I had read Madeleine L’Engle’s classic fantasy novel, A Wrinkle in Time. I would have known that the title of the album is actually from the book and that would have given me a clue that the album is based on the book. Anyway on the first several listens, I enjoyed the music, after going to Wikipedia and reading a synopsis of the book I went back and listened to the album again I liked it even more! And check this out from their website – they’re from New Jersey!

Shadow Circus was formed in 2006 in New Jersey when guitarist/keyboardist John Fontana set out to record demos to use as a calling card for session gigs. When the music caught the ear of vocalist David Bobick, he insisted that the music be fully realized with a complete band. With John’s background in classical and progressive, and Dave’s degree in musical theater, the two set out to form a unique band that would be just as rocking as it would be progressive, and embrace the aspect of entertaining live performance that they felt had been lost since the genre’s heyday in the 70’s. The band’s name and first song was inspired by Ray Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes, which would be the first of many literary references in their work, and Shadow Circus was born. Read More

Shadow-Circus The current line-up for the band consists of David Bobick – Vocals John Fontana – Guitar, Keyboards David Silver – Keyboards Matt Masek – Bass Jason Brower – Drums ProgArchives ranks On a Dark and Stormy Night at 18 on their “Top of 2012” list and overall the album received a 4.05 and an “excellent addition to any prog rock music collection! And I agree! You can read more about Shadow Circus from ProgArchives here Here’s “Daddy’s Gone” from the album…..for those of you who don’t know the story….

The book begins with the line “It was a dark and stormy night,” an allusion to the opening words in Edward George Bulwer-Lytton’s 1830 novel Paul Clifford. Unable to sleep during a thunderstorm, Meg descends from her attic room to find Charles Wallace sitting at the table drinking milk and eating bread and jam. They are then joined by their mother, and are visited by their new eccentric neighbor, Mrs Whatsit. In the course of conversation, Mrs Whatsit casually mentions there is such a thing as a tesseract, which causes Mrs. Murry to almost faint. The next morning, Meg discovers the term refers to a scientific concept her father was working on before his mysterious disappearance. The following afternoon, Meg and Charles Wallace encounter Meg’s schoolmate, Calvin O’Keefe, a high-school junior who, although he is a “big man on campus”, considers himself a misfit as well. They then go to visit an old haunted house near town which Charles Wallace already knows is the home of Mrs Whatsit. There they encounter a companion of Mrs Whatsit, the equally strange Mrs Who. She promises that she and her friends will help Meg find and rescue her father. A budding love interest develops between Meg and Calvin. In the evening, Charles Wallace declares it is time for them to go on their mission to save their father. This is accompanied by the appearance of the third member of the “Mrs W’s”, Mrs Which, who appears to materialize out of nothing Read More