Symphonic Prog

Voyager: Cailyn’s voyage through our Solar System!

Cailyn Lloyd

Voyager – Cailyn (Lloyd) – Released January 2015

Several weeks ago, I took a trip through space courtesy of the music of John Serrie and his album Day Star. Over the last week I have traveled through our own solar system tracing the travels of the Voyager ship, via the music of Cailyn (Lloyd)and her latest release apply titled Voyager. 

Cailyn is a guitarist, multi-instrumentalist, and composer from Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. She began her music career at an early age, starting with piano and quickly moving on to violin and bass. By her teens she was living in London, England and playing in blues and prog-rock bands Cailyn eventually returned to the states, still studying and playing guitar, bass and keyboards. Not satisfied with that she added drums to her repertoire. Oh, and she took some time off to raise a family!! Around 2004, Cailyn returned to music full-time, initially touring with the Alimony Blues Band as a guitarist and then with the power-rock band IX Lives playing guitar, bass and keyboards.

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Exploring the Psychedelic/Space Rock of the UK’s Amplifier – Mystoria!

So yesterday the soundtrack for my run (you can read about the run here) was the latest release MystoriaMystoria from the UK psychedelic/Space rock band Amplifier. Amplifier plays highly original material using deeply personal lyrics with walls of noise and stunning melodies. Mystoria is the fifth studio album from the band. They have also released several singles and EPs and one live album.  The original members of the band were Sel Balamir lead guitarist and vocalist, Matt Brobin on drums and bassist Neil Mahony. After there 2011 release the band members changed with former Oceansize guitarist Steve Durose and bassist Alex “Magnum” Redhead joining the band in 2011 and 2012 respectively. The last two years have been a very prolific period in the band’s history. Between Echo Street and Mystoria the band released the EP Sunriders, which was followed by Live in Barcelona 2013. This contrasts with the release of only one EP Eternity that they release in the five years between Insider (2006) and The Octopus (2011). Balamir explains it like this….

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Exploring the Symphonic Prog of Germany’s Traumhaus – Ausgeliefert and Das Geheimnis!

AusgeliefertSo one of the things that I really like about Prog Rock is that the genre is global in nature, and the bands can virtually come from anywhere in the world!! Typically, most of the vocals are in English making it harder to pinpoint the homeland of the band. That is not a problem with Traumhaus, whose vocals are in their native language – German!! I discovered the band on progstreaming, where I saw their latest release Das Geheimnis (The Secret) I listened for a bit and then went to Spotify to find the album so that I could download it, to listen to it more fully. The album was not a Spotify, I did find though a just released album Ausgeleiffert. The album is a re-release of the band’s self-titled first album, which was released in 2001. The re-re-release includes some new cover art work and two bonus tracks “Die Reise” (The Journey) and Die Andere Seite (The Other Side).

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Exploring the Symphonic Progressive Rock of Netherland’s – Minor Giant – On the Road

Minor Giant albumOne of the albums that has been in my listening rotation for a while now is the debut album of a symphonic rock/progressive rock band from the Netherlands Minor Giant, and with each listen I like the album more and more.

The first seeds of the band were sown in 2010 when at 16 years old the founder of the band Rindert Lammers composed and recorded several instrumental symphonic progressive rock tracks. Then in 2011 Rindert posted an instrumntal demo to Soundcloud, soon thereafter vocals from Christiaan Bruin (Sky Architect, Chris) were added to the track. The second seeds were sown when Rindert sent out a call for musicians to join him to record an album! The first musician to respond was drummer Roy Post, who became a co-leader of the band. Post handled the organization and communication end of the band’s business allowing Lammers to focus creating the music! Finally the seeds germinated when bass player Harry den Hartog (ex-PBII), guitar player/vocalist Jordi Repkes and keyboard player Jos Heijmans joined the duo of Lammers and Post. After meeting on the studio and working on two tracks, the band the group clicked and Minor Giant was formed!!

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Exploring the Music of Spain’s Kant, Freud, Kafka – No Tengas Miedo – Symphonic or Not!

KantFreudKafkaAfter my run last night, I was pretty much physically drained, I took a shower, ate and then wrote a post at Me, Myself, Music and Mysteries. After that, I was going to write about my run and its soundtrack, which was the new album from The Royal Southern Brotherhood. While I was getting ready to write that post, I went to look up something about a prog band that I listened to earlier in the day Rite of Passage. wasn’t having much luck finding information, so I went to progstreaming, where I first saw their album. While I was browsing for the Rite of Passage album, I noticed another album No Tengas Miedo from Kant Freud Kafka. I went to Spotify found the album and gave it a listen and really liked the music. I set out to find more out about the band, off to ProgArchives. I ended up at the ProgArchives forum where there was a discussion among the leaders of the various sub-genre groups, whether or not, the band belonged in the Symphonic sub-genre. As I was listening, I was agreeing that the band was not symphonic, but more fusion/jazz oriented, but definitely prog and definitely good! Here is what I learned at New Prog Rock Releases…..

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Symphonic Prog from the USA’s Rocket Scientists – Supernatural Highways! (Video)

Superntural HighwaysMany moons ago, when my on Andrew still was working part-time at Target, I have a vague recollection of him telling me about a band he had listened to and enjoyed – Rocket Scientists. I think that I gave the band a quick listen and really didn’t care for them. A week or so ago, the band released a new EP titled Supernatural Highways, so I went to Spotify to check it out. There are two tracks on this 30 minute EP- track one “Traveler on the Supernatural Highway” hogs 26 minutes of them, leaving 4 minutes plus for “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service”! Anyway both are instrumentals and both are really good!!

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Symphonic Prog Explorations – David Minasian – Random Acts of Beauty!

So yesterday as I was scrolling through my iPod I came across this album, I haven’t listened to it for a long time! If you like The Moody Blues this one’s for you!….

Random Acts CoverSo one of the things I like about Progressive Rock is the that there are so many sub-genres there’s virtually something for everyone! Today on the way back from the Garden State Parkway I listened to two very different albums. First there was the hammering metal sound of the album The Enemy Within from Prymary followed by the musically lush Random Acts of Beauty from David Miniasian. While I enjoyed both albums I like the Minasian album a little better!

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Archives: An Afternoon of Prog Rock with the United Kingdom’s Aqauaplanage!

Aquaplanage

Ok so this post was written last March, one of the problems with listening and exploring so much new music, is that you forget about the ones you listened to and like, like Aquaplanage!! So here’s that March post!

This afternoon I went to Mog to listen to Echoes of Indiana Avenue by Wes Montgomery only to find that they didn’t have the album. So I listened to another album for a bit and then I looked at albums “just for me”, which now is a collection of all types of genres, who would think that my music listening is all over the musical spectrum? Anyway one album that caught my eye was a self-titled album from 2008 from a band called Aquaplanage. Now Mog says they picked it because I listened to Seven Steps to the Green Door and Nine Stones Close, which means that it’s Prog Rock. So I put it on and loved it! I went to ProgArchives.com to check out what they thought and the overall rating was 3.39 out of 5 with several reviews at 4 out of 5.

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XNA – When We Changed You – Symphonic Prog from the USA!!

XNA is a Symphonic prog/Progressive Rock band from the United States. For the last few days their debut album When We Changed You has been in my listening rotation. As I listened to the album, it was obvious that these guys were heavily influenced by Genesis and other early prog bands. On several tracks images of Jethro Tull popped into my head! My wife listened to a short portions of the album, didn’t really like the lyrics and thought that the singer was a little too theatrical. But how can music that is influenced by Genesis not be theatrical!

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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!

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