Mark’s Quick Review: Abel Ganz’s – The Life of the Honey Bee and Other Moments of Clarity

Mark’s Quick Review: Abel Ganz’s – The Life of the Honey Bee and Other Moments of Clarity

I go into this review really liking Abel Ganz and, frankly, the people behind the band.  My wife and I may be the only two Americans that have seen the band twice.

Denis, when sending me this album, warned me it was much different than their previous albums.  He was right.  Not only is it different from previous albums, but each song also differs from its predecessor.

Still, it’s a well crafted effort that is cohesive and intoxicating. This is a diverse album that may take a few more listens than other albums before you know how much you really like it.

Because the album is so diverse, I am sure that everyone will have a different favorite song, which is also indicative of a great album.  For me Sepia and White is my favorite.  It’s as good as any anthem I have heard.

The Title track opens that album and embodies everything I like about the band. I really enjoy the brass work at the end of the track.

The second track, One Small Soul, is the single and is the wonderful melody that I have come to expect in my favorite progressive rock. Jack Webb’s keyboards at times sound like they were pulled straight out of a Bruce Hornsby album.

Arran Shores is a short instrumental piece which is a good segway to the second half of the album. This is where I think the differences in this album are shown, because frankly, up to this point it didn’t sound that different from previous releases, but that might just be ignorance on my part as I do not play an instrument.

Denis is a secret weapon behind the mic as he embodies the soulful aspects of Peter Gabriel on The Light Shines.

This rating is indicative of a band I would like to fly into Chicago for a show.  I hope they take me up on it.

ALBUM HIGHLIGHTS: Request One Small Soul Here

Click above to purchase at Amazon US or Amazon UK and we’ll get a little referral bonus on your whole order. Even if you don’t order this album

If you have never read the key for my ratings below please do so one time. I feel my ratings are tougher than my peers. Some other reviewers may inflate their ratings in hopes to get people and bands the share the link to the review. When you have a domain like progrock.com you don’t need to drive traffic to your site.
So you can count on my reviews to be fair and any bias I might have whether positive or negative will be clearly explained including a rating for my opinion of the band prior to reviewing the album. Also Check my last.fm link to see how compatible our music tasts are.

https://www.last.fm/user/mon40/library/artists

Key:
These ratings are just attributes and may not have correlation to the most important: OVERALL RATING

PREVIOUS BAND RATING
0: Never heard of them or debut album.
2: Someone recommended. I give them another shot.
4: Some good moments in the past but never put together an album I really liked.
6: Some 4 or 5 star songs but albums can be hit or miss for me.
8: I like 80% of their songs and probably went to see them live.
10: I would, and probably have gone on a plane to see them live.

ACCESSIBILITY EXAMPLES
2: Weather Report
4: Zappa
6: Genesis – Selling England by the Pound,
8: Marillion – F.E.A.R
10: Kino – Picture

HEAVINESS EXAMPLES
2: IQ – Seventh House
4: Discipline – Unfold Like a Staircase
6: Porcupine Tree – In Abstentia, Shadow Gallery – Tyranny
8: Vanden Plas – Chirst 0, Dream Theater – Scenes From a Memory
10: Opeth – Black Water Park

MELODIC EXAMPLES:
2: Opeth – Black Water Park
4: Vanden Plas – Chirst 0, Dream Theater – Scenes From a Memory
6: Porcupine Tree – In Abstentia, Shadow Gallery – Tyranny
8: Discipline – Unfold Like a Staircase
10: IQ – Seventh House

OVERALL RATING:
2: Will Never listen to again and deleted under no circumstances should you buy this
4: Not my thing maybe one redeeming song.
6: I like parts of this and I would check them out if they were near me.
8: I would get in the car and road trip to see this album live
10: I would get on a plane to see this performed live

Packaging:
0: Did not send
2: Sleeve or jewel-case with only single card front.
4: Some interesting information in packaging.
6: Nice art and some information
8: Nice art and full lyrics
10: Full lyrics, composer credits, are for each specific song

See if our likes are similar See my Last.fm Page

Mark’s Quick Review: The Fierce and the Dead’s – Live USA 2017

Mark’s Quick Review: The Fierce and the Dead’s – Live USA 2017

The Fierce And The Dead are:

Matt Stevens – guitar, synth, piano
Kev Feazey – bass, programming, synth, percussion
Steve Cleaton – guitar, piano.
Stuart Marshall – drums, percussion

This is a recording of the live show recorded at RoSfest in 2017.  Yours truly was there to see this show and I thoroughly enjoyed it.  Not only was their set great but the four of them had so much fun on and off the stage.  Smiling around them was infectious. I had also seen the Galahad show that was recorded at RoSfest called Sleepless In Phoenixville a few years earlier and i was hoping for the same quality.  I certainly got what I hoped for the recording does a great job at capturing the live show.

This UK instrumental band is not your typical prog band.  I would say that the music is on the outer fringes of progressive rock and is most like post rock genre.  I usually describe this band as not prog but as a band that appeals to a prog fans.  Their influence are quite varied
If you are a fan of the band its an “auto buy”.  If you are new to the band you should queue up a song on the station and decide for yourself.  I put a link to the song Truck its a must for all fans of Edgar Winter Band

The rating of the album has to do more with personal taste and less to do with the quality of the album or the music.  Which is why I suggest people look at my last.fm account to see how well my tastes align with each reader.

ALBUM HIGHLIGHTS: Request Truck Here

Click above to purchase at Amazon US or Amazon UK and we’ll get a little referral bonus on your whole order. Even if you don’t order this album

If you have never read the key for my ratings below please do so one time. I feel my ratings are tougher than my peers. Some other reviewers may inflate their ratings in hopes to get people and bands the share the link to the review. When you have a domain like progrock.com you don’t need to drive traffic to your site.
So you can count on my reviews to be fair and any bias I might have whether positive or negative will be clearly explained including a rating for my opinion of the band prior to reviewing the album. Also Check my last.fm link to see how compatible our music tasts are.

https://www.last.fm/user/mon40/library/artists

Key:
These ratings are just attributes and may not have correlation to the most important: OVERALL RATING

PREVIOUS BAND RATING
0: Never heard of them or debut album.
2: Someone recommended. I give them another shot.
4: Some good moments in the past but never put together an album I really liked.
6: Some 4 or 5 star songs but albums can be hit or miss for me.
8: I like 80% of their songs and probably went to see them live.
10: I would, and probably have gone on a plane to see them live.

ACCESSIBILITY EXAMPLES
2: Weather Report
4: Zappa
6: Genesis – Selling England by the Pound,
8: Marillion – F.E.A.R
10: Kino – Picture

HEAVINESS EXAMPLES
2: IQ – Seventh House
4: Discipline – Unfold Like a Staircase
6: Porcupine Tree – In Abstentia, Shadow Gallery – Tyranny
8: Vanden Plas – Chirst 0, Dream Theater – Scenes From a Memory
10: Opeth – Black Water Park

MELODIC EXAMPLES:
2: Opeth – Black Water Park
4: Vanden Plas – Chirst 0, Dream Theater – Scenes From a Memory
6: Porcupine Tree – In Abstentia, Shadow Gallery – Tyranny
8: Discipline – Unfold Like a Staircase
10: IQ – Seventh House

OVERALL RATING:
2: Will Never listen to again and deleted under no circumstances should you buy this
4: Not my thing maybe one redeeming song.
6: I like parts of this and I would check them out if they were near me.
8: I would get in the car and road trip to see this album live
10: I would get on a plane to see this performed live

Packaging:
0: Did not send
2: Sleeve or jewel-case with only single card front.
4: Some interesting information in packaging.
6: Nice art and some information
8: Nice art and full lyrics
10: Full lyrics, composer credits, are for each specific song

See if our likes are similar See my Last.fm Page

Mark’s Quick Review: IQ’s – Resistance

Mark’s Quick Review: IQ’s – Resistance

IQ in its 38th year inexplicably has released its most ambitious album to date with Resistance.  This double album with three epic tracks.  Not only is the scope of the album ambitious but the quality is as good as your favorite IQ album.  

If you were not a fan I don’t suspect this album will win you over, but if you liked the band going in you will not be disappointed.  If you are a genesis fan you probably would like Stay Down as it sounds a lot like something you might hear on Nursery Crime. This album may take a few more listens than other other albums due to the length of some of these songs, but you won’t mind the wait.   

I rate every song on this album above average with my favorite song being The Great Spirit Way not sure if it will stay my favorite song but that is what I will say after 5 listens of the album.  

Their 12th album may not be your favorite IQ album but I doubt you will skip even one song when playing it.

I will probably make the trip to Europe to see this live.  Hence the rating. 

 

Click above to purchase at Amazon US or Amazon UK and we’ll get a little referral bonus on your whole order. Even if you don’t order this album

If you have never read the key for my ratings below please do so one time. I feel my ratings are tougher than my peers. Some other reviewers may inflate their ratings in hopes to get people and bands the share the link to the review. When you have a domain like progrock.com you don’t need to drive traffic to your site.
So you can count on my reviews to be fair and any bias I might have whether positive or negative will be clearly explained including a rating for my opinion of the band prior to reviewing the album. Also Check my last.fm link to see how compatible our music tasts are.

https://www.last.fm/user/mon40/library/artists

Key:
These ratings are just attributes and may not have correlation to the most important: OVERALL RATING

PREVIOUS BAND RATING
0: Never heard of them or debut album.
2: Someone recommended. I give them another shot.
4: Some good moments in the past but never put together an album I really liked.
6: Some 4 or 5 star songs but albums can be hit or miss for me.
8: I like 80% of their songs and probably went to see them live.
10: I would, and probably have gone on a plane to see them live.

ACCESSIBILITY EXAMPLES
2: Weather Report
4: Zappa
6: Genesis – Selling England by the Pound,
8: Marillion – F.E.A.R
10: Kino – Picture

HEAVINESS EXAMPLES
2: IQ – Seventh House
4: Discipline – Unfold Like a Staircase
6: Porcupine Tree – In Abstentia, Shadow Gallery – Tyranny
8: Vanden Plas – Chirst 0, Dream Theater – Scenes From a Memory
10: Opeth – Black Water Park

MELODIC EXAMPLES:
2: Opeth – Black Water Park
4: Vanden Plas – Chirst 0, Dream Theater – Scenes From a Memory
6: Porcupine Tree – In Abstentia, Shadow Gallery – Tyranny
8: Discipline – Unfold Like a Staircase
10: IQ – Seventh House

OVERALL RATING:
2: Will Never listen to again and deleted under no circumstances should you buy this
4: Not my thing maybe one redeeming song.
6: I like parts of this and I would check them out if they were near me.
8: I would get in the car and road trip to see this album live
10: I would get on a plane to see this performed live

Packaging:
0: Did not send
2: Sleeve or jewel-case with only single card front.
4: Some interesting information in packaging.
6: Nice art and some information
8: Nice art and full lyrics
10: Full lyrics, composer credits, are for each specific song

See if our likes are similar See my Last.fm Page

Mark’s Quick Review: Pi Mezon’s – New World

Mark’s Quick Review: Pi Mezon’s – New World

The second album from Pi Mezon was highly anticipated album for me because I did like their debut. This Finnish band had an outstanding song on that album called the puppet which is reprised also in track 10 of the album.

The second album did not disappoint after listening to the the New World I felt the urge to call Jarrko up and tell him how much I liked the album. 

Like the first album I think this album has one stand out song.  Drown in My Sky is that song for me.  The big difference with this album is that the other songs on the album are all outstanding where on the first album I felt they were average.

I am not sure the band’s influeces but, Hear the Raving is a song most Leprous like for me. Lead singer Jarkko at times sounds like Leprous’ Einar Solberg occasionally and on this album I hear the similarities the most.  Then in the next song The Unfamiliar Room sounds like its straight from a Porcupine Tree album.  Don’t let me give you the impression that this album is derivative of other albums.  Pi Mezon has their own sound and its that great mixture of heavy and melodic that I search for in an album.  

Check this album out for yourself.  I think you will be glad you did.

Click above to purchase at Amazon US or Amazon UK and we’ll get a little referral bonus on your whole order. Even if you don’t order this album

If you have never read the key for my ratings below please do so one time. I feel my ratings are tougher than my peers. Some other reviewers may inflate their ratings in hopes to get people and bands the share the link to the review. When you have a domain like progrock.com you don’t need to drive traffic to your site.
So you can count on my reviews to be fair and any bias I might have whether positive or negative will be clearly explained including a rating for my opinion of the band prior to reviewing the album. Also Check my last.fm link to see how compatible our music tasts are.

https://www.last.fm/user/mon40/library/artists

Key:
These ratings are just attributes and may not have correlation to the most important: OVERALL RATING

PREVIOUS BAND RATING
0: Never heard of them or debut album.
2: Someone recommended. I give them another shot.
4: Some good moments in the past but never put together an album I really liked.
6: Some 4 or 5 star songs but albums can be hit or miss for me.
8: I like 80% of their songs and probably went to see them live.
10: I would, and probably have gone on a plane to see them live.

ACCESSIBILITY EXAMPLES
2: Weather Report
4: Zappa
6: Genesis – Selling England by the Pound,
8: Marillion – F.E.A.R
10: Kino – Picture

HEAVINESS EXAMPLES
2: IQ – Seventh House
4: Discipline – Unfold Like a Staircase
6: Porcupine Tree – In Abstentia, Shadow Gallery – Tyranny
8: Vanden Plas – Chirst 0, Dream Theater – Scenes From a Memory
10: Opeth – Black Water Park

MELODIC EXAMPLES:
2: Opeth – Black Water Park
4: Vanden Plas – Chirst 0, Dream Theater – Scenes From a Memory
6: Porcupine Tree – In Abstentia, Shadow Gallery – Tyranny
8: Discipline – Unfold Like a Staircase
10: IQ – Seventh House

OVERALL RATING:
2: Will Never listen to again and deleted under no circumstances should you buy this
4: Not my thing maybe one redeeming song.
6: I like parts of this and I would check them out if they were near me.
8: I would get in the car and road trip to see this album live
10: I would get on a plane to see this performed live

Packaging:
0: Did not send
2: Sleeve or jewel-case with only single card front.
4: Some interesting information in packaging.
6: Nice art and some information
8: Nice art and full lyrics
10: Full lyrics, composer credits, are for each specific song

See if our likes are similar See my Last.fm Page

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