ALBUM REVIEW: Hail Spirit Noir – Eden in Reverse

When Greek innovators Hail Spirit Noir spewed forth in recorded anger eight years ago it was with tones of the Aegean gracing a strange brew of Blackened Prog Metal. Fourth long-player Eden in Reverse (Agonia Records) sees the completion of a gradual metamorphosis into total Prog, with the absorption of the band’s live musicians transforming the unit into a sextet. Continue reading

ALBUM REVIEW: Louise Patricia Crane – Deep Blue

Cutting her professional teeth among serious pedigree as a member of Psych-Rock collective The Eden House Orchestra, the ethereal vocals of Belfast’s Louise Patricia Crane have dripped honey with such luminaries as Monica Richards and Julianne Regan. Debut solo album Deep Blue (Peculiar Doll Records) sees a host of Rock legends lend a hand to create a work of strange, wistful charm, paying due deference to a number of influences in the process. Continue reading

Watch the Video for Neal Morse, Mike Portnoy and Randy George’s Cover of Gerry Rafferty’s “Baker Street”

As previously reported, Neal Morse, Mike Portnoy & Randy George recently announced their return to the Cover To Cover series of albums with Cov3r To Cov3r, the brand new third installment. Featuring their renditions of classic tracks by the likes of King Crimson, Jethro Tull, Gerry Rafferty, David Bowie and more (including their cover of ‘No Opportunity Necessary, No Experience Needed’ featuring vocals from Yes singer Jon Davison), the album will be released on July 24th, as CD, Gatefold 2LP + CD & as Digital Album. Watch the video for their cover of ‘Baker Street’, originally by Gerry Rafferty, right now. Continue reading

Bill Rieflin, Drummer for REM, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, and King Crimson, Dead at Age 59

Bill Rieflin, who had a four-decade career as a drummer across Punk, Alternative Rock, Industrial Metal, and Progressive Rock has died. He was 59. Initial reports of his passing made no mention of a cause of death, but his Wikipedia page reported a battle with cancer, confirmed by his friend, session drummer Kevin Chamberlin. Most recently Bill was the drummer for King Crimson and the news was reported by KC founder Robert Fripp in a very sad and touching memorial via Facebook. Fripp wrote that Rieflin’s wife, Tracy, called him with the news. “Tracy told Toyah (Fripp’s wife) and me that the day was grey, and as Bill flew away the clouds opened, and the skies were blue for about fifteen minutes. Fly well, Brother Bill! My life is immeasurably richer for knowing you.” Rieflin’s career began in his hometown of Seattle, where he drummed with a variety of local acts, notably the punk rock group The Blackouts. The band’s final EP was produced by Ministry’s Al Jourgensen, with whom Rieflin became friends with. Jourgensen recruited the Rieflin to join Ministry when Blackouts broke up, and Rieflin played on the band’s 1988 album The Land of Rape and Honey, an industrial music iconic album in the genre. He continued as a member of the group through the mid-90s, contributing to five of the band’s LPs. Following his departure from Ministry in 1996, he played with KMFDM, New York experimental band Swans and folk group Angels of Light. Rieflin also played on Nine Inch Nails’ 1999 double album The Fragile. Also that year, he released his debut solo album, Birth of a Giant. It was during this time that a publicist introduced him to R.E.M.’s Peter Buck. The drummer would then join and contribute to R.E.M.’s final three albums — 2004’s Around the Sun, 2008’s Accelerate and 2011’s Collapse Into Now. Rieflin had previously collaborated and remained friends, announced that the drummer had joined King Crimson in 2013. Rieflin would tour with the group and appear on five of their ensuing live albums, released between 2015-18. He had been absent from the group since taking an indefinite sabbatical in 2019. Bill was an incredible drummer and kind soul. Not many artists can say they wrote and performed with three Rock and Roll Hall of Fame acts (King Crimson, R.E.M., and Nine Inch Nails) as Bill did.  Many artists paid tribute to Bill, including fellow Seattle musician Krist Novoselic of Nirvana. We send out condolences to Bill’s family, friends and many fans at this time. Continue reading

O.R.k. – Ramagehead

No, I have no idea what a Ramagehead is either, but this quixotic and enigmatic title seems entirely apposite for a third album of psychedelic Progressive Rock from this most discerning and intriguing of collectives. Combining the talents of Porcupine Tree’s bass general Colin Edwin and King Crimson drummer Pat Mastelotto, this already sounds like a Fantasy Prog Band competition winner. Add in some vocals of an Obake vintage and you’re there. This could end up being the most intimidating and contrived ego-trip were it not handled carefully.

Ye of little faith.  Continue reading

Morild – Så kom mørket…

Morild’s Så kom mørket og tog mig på ordet En sort sky af minder I afgørende stunder Frosset fast i mit indre Jeg håber det forsvinder med lyset At dø eller blive fri (Indisciplinarian), a single passage broken up into six parts to mark the album’s different movements, and translating to “Thus came the darkness and took me by my word A dark cloud of memories In crucial moments Frozen inside of me I hope it disappears with the light To die or become free”) is a strange and surprisingly bold statement for a first album. Continue reading

King Crimson Announces 50th Anniversary Tour And Box Set Plans

Arguably the best progressive rock band ever, King Crimson will celebrate the 50th Anniversary as a band in 2019, and the 50th anniversary of their debut album In The Court Of The Crimson King. The band has announced plans for major tour with a career-spanning setlist. Starting this summer, they will embark on a “Celebration Tour” consisting of 50 dates. Currently, the trek kicks off in this summer in Germany and wraps up in New York in September. Check their itinerary at their website, and purchase tickets at the link below. This year will also see the release of the documentary Cosmic F*Kc. Directed by Toby Amies, the film will include archival footage and interviews with King Crimson members past and present. It’s set for release in late 2019. A soundtrack is also planned. Continuing the celebration, the band has announced several new box sets. Their debut album, 1969’s In the Court of the Crimson King, will receive a limited edition expanded set featuring live recordings, studio sessions, photos, liner notes, and a new remix of the album proper. A vinyl release of all their 1969 recordings is in the works. Release dates have not yet been set. 90s through 2008 with the box set Heaven & Earth. Other celebratory releases planned for this year include clothing, archival live albums (in their ongoing Collectors’ Club series), an updated edition of Sid Smith’s long out-of-print band biography In the Court of King Crimson, and 50 new rarities uploaded to their website and streaming services one week at a time. Continue reading

Cormorant – Diaspora

 

Across a four-album lifespan, Bay Area’s Cormorant had consistently proven to be one of metal’s true and brightest hidden gems, offering a branch of Black Metal which takes as much worship from progressive giants such as King Crimson as it does from Extreme Metal’s icons. Still independent to this day, Cormorant have always showcased a meticulous detail that encompasses not only their rich and textured music, but even down to their vibrant, detailed and often awe-inspiring artwork. Having always shown true forward thinking and near limitless artistry, it is simply staggering that their fifth release Diaspora (self-released) breaks their mould even further, and is without a doubt their boldest offering to date. Continue reading

Rock Legend John Wetton Dies After Cancer Battle At Age 67

2017 is only a month old and we have lost another great one. Singer, songwriter, and bassist John Wetton, best known for his work with King Crimson and ASIA, has passed away after a battle with colon cancer. He was 67 years old. Continue reading