Want to hear an album written from the perspective of space?

Vangelis just released his new album, Rosetta, last month and this is what space would sound like if somebody wrote a soundtrack to the intrepid beauty of it all.

The album is reminiscent of 80s synth, a la Contact, with plenty of little chimes and echoey alien noises. This is one album you need to listen to all the way through to fully grasp the thrall of the emotional roller coaster that would ensue if one were to decide to actually accept the one-way ticket to Mars.

My guess is, the journey would be scary, dreadfully exciting, and leave you in awe when you first set foot upon the soil of another planet.

Of course, there is no sound in space, due to the lack of molecules for sound vibrations to hinge upon and bounce back to our ears, but let’s just forget about the logic of science for an hour and close our eyes to imagine an infinite amount of possibilities afforded by the great dark blue abyss.

The new Vangelis album, Rosetta, is an achingly beautiful yet terrifying space journey for your ear holes. Listen to the entire album on YouTube or purchase it on iTunes.

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The new tune from Animals As Leaders is pretty sweet

Animals As Leaders debuted their new song, “The Brain Dance”, Sept. 30, preceding their upcoming album The Madness of Many.

With drums that just won’t quit, a Spanish samba version of a metal melody, and some whale song riffs, the new Animals as Leaders tune is math rock at its loveliest.

I can’t wait to hear what the three-man band has in store for us, when The Madness of Many comes out on Nov. 11, this year.

 

Featured image via Bottom Lounge

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Listen to Beethoven’s symphonies for the first time at the new Masonic Heritage Center

beethoven
A portrait of the 13-year-old Beethoven by an unknown Bonn master (c. 1783) via Wikipedia

Ludwig van Beethoven was a mason… and now his symphonies will be played during the grand opening of the brand new auditorium, Sunday, at the Masonic Heritage Center in Bloomington, Minn.

This YouTube video provides a virtual tour of the concert hall, for those who can’t make it to the unveiling:

$20 million dollars went into the construction of the Masonic Heritage Center; $80,000 of which devoted to the sound system alone to make you feel as if you’re surrounded on all sides by the musicians while they play.

There are 450 seats in the auditorium, giving the setting an intimate quality.

Beethoven was the impetus for a movement of beautiful classical music to set in motion a standard that is still in place today.

While most of his symphonies are hours long, you can listen to pieces of each of them, courtesy of the fine musicians who carry his spirit passed the realms of the unthinkable into fruition today.

Business Wire:

The Beethoven concert will feature musicians and ensembles from around the Twin Cities, including MacPhail Center for Music’s premier adult choral ensemble, SONOMENTO, the Kenwood Symphony Orchestra, pianists Roderick Phipps-Kettlewell and Bryon Wilson, and variety of guest artists.

Now, here’s a video of a man playing Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” using Glocks.

You can hear an arrangement of Beethoven’s symphonies, live this Sunday, for the unveiling of the new Ives Auditorium at the Masonic Heritage Center.

 

 

Beethoven’s original sheet music via Reddit

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‘Versus’ by pg.lost is now available on Spotify

You don’t have to hold your ear to the radio to hear a new song, anymore.

The days of pay-per-play and “hit new single” are over. Now, artists are pushing their new songs out to the public, hitting them in their own homes, via Spotify.

Pg.lost

pg.lostWho is a perfect example of a band who is disseminating their music humbly through the net? Pg.lost.

You won’t see ads extolling the new album. There are no bells and whistles. Their label, Pelagic Records, is even selling the album for 7€ ($7.81) which is unheardof. These guys aren’t looking for celebrity, and yet they consistently make an impact on the lives of their devout fans.

Teasers

They released Ikaros on Aug. 30, then Off the Beaten Path on Sept. 7. These little teasers gave us insight into the new album, showing fans that pg.lost still has their fingers in developing hour-long story arcs of auditory construction that send us on imaginary adventures.

Is there a better band to listen to when you’re playing that one RPG that you revisit every year, ritualisitcally?

Versus

Pg.lost just released their new album, Versus and you can listen to it on Spotify. Of course, no local radio station is going to play lyric-less prog rock, so you’d be hard-pressed to find this tune anywhere, but online.

Listen to Versus, by pg.lost, on Spotify and add a little whimsy to your workday.

Featured image via TEDxTelAviv

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The boss fight that is Guidance, by Russian Circles

a0095785674_10Russian Circles’ recent release, Guidance, proves that instrumental rock is not dead. With their grinding effects, these guys have created art on wheels, hurling listeners into a dreamlike trance where ghosts and goblins lunge for your throat, and Guidance is the soundtrack to get you through the battle.

I first got sucked into Russian Circles with their album, Empros, when I was on a Red Sparowes, pg.lost kind of kick a few years back.

Up until recently, taking the song names to heart, I thought these guys were actually Russian, but they’re from Chicago, Illinois.

For a three-man band, they get creative with a crapload of pedals to construct an orchestral sound that comes at you from all sides. Each song leads you on a journey of the mind, where stories play out behind chord changes and varying rhythms, dragging your mood either into the gutter or lifting you up to fight the next boss.

It starts out, inobsequious, just slow-jamming, tending toward lighthearted melodies as they’re looking forward to new beginnings, then the static of an untapped FM-radio station starts coming through near the end of the first song, Asa, blighting the sound, and the drums slowly pick up to carry you on to the next leg of the adventure.

Vorel would be the perfect song for fending off demons in Gods Eater or Monster Hunter. It’s almost too much to take in, all the sounds colliding. Then it gets dark and grindy, while maintaining the constant hum of Brian Cook’s up/down strokes, and Dave Turncratz goes wild on the drums, manic, yet somehow still maintaining the pace of the song.

All the tracks on Guidance run seamless into each other, as if they weren’t individual songs, but one 41-minute long story.

Mota‘s a little more hopeful sounding, then it changes, and you’re thinking, “What’s gonna happen?” Then Cook comes in with a single powerful note, left hanging in the air. It’s a predictable turn of events, satisfying the need to take a long drought of water on an arduous hike through the woods, and Mike Sullivan backs up the track taking his time, drawing out long bass notes, while Turncratz is just hacking away. Sullivan’s fingers are running like a spider along the fret board.

With some consistent crashing toms to bring us back from a slight pause, you’re not ready for the end. Russian Circles doesn’t give you a break, as individual notes rush into quick strumming and the next song takes shape.

Afrika has this weird didjiredoo-type sound, Cook’s doing, as he fills the room with bass. With their scientific looping thought experiments, it almost sounds like there’s a xylephone coming through one of the lower layers, or someone’s running their hands along telephone keys. Is there an army of flying monkeys banging around on trash cans in the street? Nope. It’s just Sullivan, messing with effects, giving the impression that 10 guys are all playing guitar simultaneously.

There’s no real structure to the songs. They pluck when they feel like it, roll into drums when it seems appropriate, and let the notes hang when the moment’s right.

Taming things over a bit, with Overboard, the sequence ramps back up with Calla, with super dark, grungy riffs. The image of a burly hulk creature materializes into view, Frankenstein’s take on Highlander, climbing sharp rocks cliff side during a storm. He’s seeking vengeance. His name is Calla and he’s here to kick your ass.

The track gets nasty around the 32:00 mark and Turncratz does not relent and Cook starts djenting. Then the song sizzles out, electricity crackling on the surface of the ocean at night. The giant reaches his hard-earned ascent.

Lisboa proves a quaint little ending to the album, slowly reminding us that it’s all over. The song says, “Go home, sucker,” thus leading you to play the entire thing again, while your eyes glaze over, mesmerized by the guitar’s delay, the crashing cymbals, and the beast roar of a blaze that is the bass.

How fast is Cook’s wrist, anyway? As a child unfamiliar with the mechanics of musical metaphysics, you’d never guess that this guy is likely drenched in sweat while he’s working through a nasty breakdown, cutting off the audience from what might have been another 40-minute voodoo ritual.

On the whole, listening to Guidance is twice as satisfying as devouring loads of heavy comfort food during one of those long-awaited holidays.

And now I’m sucked back into the tar pit of instrumental metal, thanks to Russian Circles. Their sixth studio album will have you gripping the edge of your seat, trying to stave off visions of dark beings with an insatiable thirst for blood.

I’ll listen to this album on repeat until pg.lost releases Versus on Sept. 16.

 

Featured fractal by Deviant Artist, zy0rg

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Someday River’s EP will transport you back to the sea

Listening to Someday River makes you feel like being a kid again. Without a care in the world, they transport you to that moment when you put the conch shell up to your ear to hear the “whoosh!” of the ocean.

It’s been almost three years since I saw this band live. Thankfully, the internet provides. Now, I can keep up with these guys as soon as they post a new song–and guess what? Someday River‘s releasing a new EP on May 13, but you can listen to two singles featured on the album on Souncloud.

Brief backstory

Greyson Paul Charnock has seen his band Bellows through many iterations and has finally settled on renaming the new three-man-band Someday River. After all this time, the vibe and overall song structure remains unchanged, so you can sink back into that familiar feeling that everything’s going to be OK.

Here is the band lineup as it stands today:

  • Greyson Charnock (Guitar, Vocals, Synth)
  • Sean Boyle (Percussion)
  • Kyle Fournier (Bass)

Two new singles

Day Changer flows like the summer breeze. The members of the band patiently, yet expertly lull you into a comforting state of mind, as you find your shoulders have started on a jaunty little journey of their own volition.

There’s a beachy bend to the guitar riffs that springs to mind visions of the sea. You can almost smell the saltwater drifting through the speakers.

Ever have that feeling when you’re on the way to work, trying to get psyched about your workload, but your brain is still stuck in bed?

That’s how Sleeping Sideways affects you. It makes me want to pull over and take a time-out from the oncoming rush of the future and reaffirm what’s important in life, like calling your lady up and apologizing for the argument you had the night before.

Overall Assessment

Someday River’s new EP is turning out to be the perfect panacea for that anxiety-driven stress-out moment of panic at 3 p.m. on a Friday, when all you want to do is shut down the computer abruptly, and say, “Peace out!” because you’re tired of the monotony of the work week and dying to feel some warm sunshine on your skin.

Their music will subconsciously alleviate the pain of the work day and send you to far off destinations where the ocean breeze is calling you home.

The vocal effects Grey chooses creates a vision of his untethered spirit soaring above the planes of mundane existence. His lyrics show that he’s taken a birds-eye view of the disenfranchised mass of humanity, projecting his voice down into the hallows of an enormous chamber.

He’s trying to remind us to go with the flow, to love each other, and to let the problems of past fade as they should–for at least the length of a song.

Paired perfectly in sync with Sean’s drums, he and Kyle are on the same level when it comes to creating a vibe of simplistic harmony.

So Chill

Someday River‘s sound is so floaty–in the best way–like they don’t have to try very hard. You don’t imagine these guys sitting around recording and nagging each other to get each pitch perfect; it seems to happen naturally. It’s as if they’re jamming, then it works, and someone says, “Let’s do it again, but lets’ record it this time.”

I’m definitely forward to the new EP, Sleeping Sideways, slated for release on May 13.

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