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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Wed Dec 07, 2016 5:26 pm

Opeth - Ghost Reveries (2005)

Deftly walks a tightrope between their earlier Death Metal material and their later retro Prog Rock sound. The lasting influence of Steven Wilson (Porcupine Tree) on the band is readily apparent here, even though he did not participate in the recording of this album (he produced, engineered, and contributed occasional guest vocals, guitar, and keyboards to their three albums prior to this one).
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Wed Dec 07, 2016 6:26 pm

just brew it! wrote:
Opeth - Ghost Reveries (2005)

Deftly walks a tightrope between their earlier Death Metal material and their later retro Prog Rock sound. The lasting influence of Steven Wilson (Porcupine Tree) on the band is readily apparent here, even though he did not participate in the recording of this album (he produced, engineered, and contributed occasional guest vocals, guitar, and keyboards to their three albums prior to this one).

Literally the only Opeth song I've heard is Face of Melinda. Is this album a good starting point if I liked that track?
Also, listening to The Comet is Coming - Channel the Spirits (2016). It's a weird space-jazz album with a lot of catchy saxophone and jazz licks, but some hard hitting electronica type percussion.
 
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Wed Dec 07, 2016 8:33 pm

poopooperson wrote:
Literally the only Opeth song I've heard is Face of Melinda. Is this album a good starting point if I liked that track?

Maybe. That's a trickier question than you might think... "it depends". :wink:

My initial reaction was going to be to suggest Still Life, since that's the album that "Face Of Melinda" is on. However, in the context of the rest of the album, "Face of Melinda" is kind of like a field of (relative) serenity with dark chasms down into the abyss surrounding it. A key question (since FoM has all "clean" vocals but the rest of the album does not) is, how do you feel about growled vocals? If you're fine with them, then Still Life is probably a good place to start.

If you're looking for something generally more on the mellow side with all clean vocals, go with Damnation.

Blackwater Park and Deliverance are probably the best two albums showcasing their more aggressive side (but FWIW all Opeth albums tend to intersperse quiet acoustic interludes between the more aggressive passages... Damnation excepted, since in that case the whole album is pretty mellow).

If you'd prefer something without growled vocals and more of a Prog Rock flavor, then I'd suggest starting with Heritage or Pale Communion.

Although I'm a fairly recent (about a year and a half ago) Opeth convert myself, they've quickly become one of my favorite bands. Not only do they make some great music, it is also fascinating to compare and contrast their older albums with the newer ones, and see how they've experimented and evolved over the years.

Allmusic has reviews of all of their albums: http://www.allmusic.com/artist/opeth-mn ... iscography

Hope that helps!
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Thu Dec 08, 2016 8:09 am

Just to follow up that last post with some examples...

A more "typical" track from Still Life: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bOU013hZMcU

An example of the sort of music you'll find on Ghost Reveries: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QlT1sRHf34M

The opening cut from Damnation (fairly representative of the overall mellow vibe of the album): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qEaf9LqIUZQ

Opening cut from Blackwater Park: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6VQzMyAdHoY

Opeth in full-on Prog Rock mode (from Pale Communion): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a3sYPX17cFk

And on this track (from Heritage) it seems to me like the opening section is meant to be a tribute to Jethro Tull: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xMsSGNvQmoQ
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Thu Dec 08, 2016 10:48 pm

And now for something completely different (now that I've had my Opeth fix)...

Rachel Z - On the Milky Way Express: A Tribute to the Music of Wayne Shorter (2000)

Incredibly talented jazz pianist... good stuff. She doesn't sing on this one, which is a good thing; she should stick to her strength -- keyboards.

Also looking forward to her next "Trio Of Oz" release (with husband Omar Hakim on drums).
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:23 pm

The Band - Christmas Must Be Tonight
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sat Dec 10, 2016 9:57 am

Ventured out to the daughter's college last night for their band concert. First half was all modern dissonance-style works; I'm not a fan. What did strike me, though, is that a clearly '60s-era building (it's all exposed concrete and cinderblock) could sound so well. As I puzzled over this, I began to notice the absorbers hanging up high and the diffusers applied to the walls. It may be a podunk state college in the middle of nowhere, but they've got a first-class concert hall. Band was tight, though it being about 25% faculty might have had something to do with it. Daughter's old oboe teacher was there and brought along a cor anglais.

On the off chance that any other gerbil might know of it, it's the Dibden Center at Johnson State College (Johnson, VT). I'll save the story of the King's College Tract for later.
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sun Dec 11, 2016 10:01 pm

A classic tango


A modern tango


A tango rock fusion
 
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Mon Dec 12, 2016 8:57 pm

Spin Doctors - "Pocket Full of Kryptonite". Popped up from the depths of the collection during a "shuffle all" session. Not going to go down in history, but still a fun song.
 
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sat Dec 17, 2016 8:47 am

Chuckaluphagus wrote:
Spin Doctors - "Pocket Full of Kryptonite". Popped up from the depths of the collection during a "shuffle all" session. Not going to go down in history, but still a fun song.

Agreed! I saw them live back in their heyday, it it was a fun show.
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sat Dec 17, 2016 8:49 am

FM - Transformation (2015)

The Canadian prog-space-rock band that released their stunning debut Black Noise back in 1977, reincarnated (sort of). The only original member is Cameron Hawkins on keyboards, bass, and vocals.

Hawkins' voice still sounds almost the same as on their debut; he must not be a smoker! :wink: While not a powerful vocalist, his voice does suit the material.

Quite a bit of violin and mandolin on this (not that this is necessarily a bad thing, but their old albums tended to feature keyboards more prominently, and I think that would help fill out the arrangements). Some of the songs themselves are somewhat forgettable, but there are flashes of that original FM vibe here and there, and I just got this so I need to give it a few repeat listens to sink in.

Based on initial impression I'd give it a 3/5. If you really want to hear this band in their heyday, check out the above mentioned Black Noise. Their third album City Of Fear is also quite good, as is the more improv/experimental Headroom (if you can find it... AFAIK only ever released on vinyl sometime back in the '80s).

And a belated RIP to their original violinist James Plewman (a.k.a. Nash The Slash), who passed away as a result of a heart attack in 2014.
The years just pass like trains. I wave, but they don't slow down.
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sun Dec 18, 2016 3:51 pm

Booker T & The MGs - Green Onions. The kick is that this version has clips from a whole pile of 50s/60s Hays Code era movies. Whoever said there was no sex in those flicks was wrong. From the YT list:

Marilyn Monroe, Eli, Wallach, Thelma Ritter, Clark Gable (The Misfits 1961)
Sophia Loren (It Started in Naples 1960)
Jayne Mansfield (Dog Eat Dog! 1964)
Natalie Wood (Gypsy 1962)
Kim Novak, William Holden (Picnic 1955)
Anita Ekberg (La Dolce Vita 1960)
Ann-Margret (The Swinger 1966)
Gina Lollobrigida, Rock Hudson (Come September 1961)
Romy Schneider, Jack Lemmon (Good Neighbor Sam 1964)
Brigitte Bardot (Come Dance With Me! 1959)
Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, George Segal, Sandy Dennis (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? 1966)
Jill St. John (The Oscar 1966)
Mamie Van Doren (Untamed Youth 1957)
Shirley MacLaine, Gene Kelly (What a Way to Go! 1964)
Cyd Charisse, Robert Taylor (Party Girl 1958)
Raquel Welch (Flareup 1969)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OQgftmOeK_c
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sun Dec 18, 2016 4:16 pm

Wow, thanks for that.

TBH I had no idea that song was that old; I had just assumed it was late '60s or early '70s (probably when I became aware of it, I guess). Kinda makes me think of ZZ Top's "La Grange". Same groove, different instrument.

And there's a big difference between "sex" and "sensual". Those clips have the latter in spades, even though there's none (at least in the explicit sense) of the former. With all the taboos back then, they had to be more creative... it became an art form. One that we've mostly lost.
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sun Dec 18, 2016 4:24 pm

Green Onions was recorded in 1962 (Steve "The Colonel" Cropper was 21). Twelve bar blues has no known starting point and it will never die. The YT vid was obviously done by the uploader.

And yes, leaving a whole lot to the imagination is far more sensual than titties on the screen. It was also the only way around the Hays Code.

That said, the bra-less/panty-less/hirsute Ann-Margret in the see-thru yoga pants still works today.

EDIT: The Marilyn Monroe scene that starts the vid is, to me, the one and only time she ever looked comfortable in her own skin on camera. It's also Clark Gable's last flick.

EDIT2: Before she went bat-guano crazy, Shirley MacLaine could bring the goods, IYKWIM.
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Thu Dec 22, 2016 8:54 pm

Andras Schiff - Beethoven's Piano Sonata #17 ("The Tempest") (2007)

A phenomenal piece of music from my favorite classical composer, interpreted by an amazing pianist. Released on ECM (a German label much better known for producing a steady stream of eclectic jazz and world music recordings over the past 4+ decades), Schiff's Beethoven sonata cycle (I own the entire set!) has the crisp sound and meticulous production values typical of their non-classical releases. Bravo!
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Fri Dec 23, 2016 5:47 pm

WARNING: Pretentious progrock epic alert!

The Neal Morse Band, The Similitude of a Dream.  Based on John Bunyan's The Pilgrim's Progress, so yeah, there's a religious element, but it's not obnoxious and the double-album is really good... maybe the best concept album I've listened to since Dream Theater's Scenes From a Memory.

Lots of different flavors and textures, nods to other bands, fun stuff.  A few samples:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g8GdH59yuD8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dKWF56Y9cEU

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rL5u8nCI8FY
 
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Fri Dec 23, 2016 11:20 pm

Yeats wrote:
WARNING: Pretentious progrock epic alert!

The Neal Morse Band, The Similitude of a Dream.  Based on John Bunyan's The Pilgrim's Progress, so yeah, there's a religious element, but it's not obnoxious and the double-album is really good... maybe the best concept album I've listened to since Dream Theater's Scenes From a Memory.

Lots of different flavors and textures, nods to other bands, fun stuff.  A few samples:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g8GdH59yuD8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dKWF56Y9cEU

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rL5u8nCI8FY

Those three tracks kind of remind me of his old band Spock's Beard. Thanks for the heads up, I wasn't aware this existed; based on those three songs, the album sounds like a winner. I was rather disappointed in Sola Scriptura and the first Flying Colors album, and had basically written Morse off as a result; I guess I need to start paying attention again.
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sat Dec 24, 2016 12:21 am

just brew it! wrote:
Those three tracks kind of remind me of his old band Spock's Beard. Thanks for the heads up, I wasn't aware this existed; based on those three songs, the album sounds like a winner. I was rather disappointed in Sola Scriptura and the first Flying Colors album, and had basically written Morse off as a result; I guess I need to start paying attention again.

There's definitely a bit of Snow in this album, and there's a song or two that makes me wonder if he wrote them while he was still with The Beard.  What's interesting is the album is rife with solo Nealisms and took me three listens to shake that off, but once there my enjoyment of Similitude skyrocketed.  I might still be in the honeymoon phase, but it has been my steady jam for a week now.
I like both Flying Color albums well enough, but sort of passively.  The second one is a bit more proggy.  Disliked Sola for the most partI enjoyed most of One but that eventually got a bit too Jesus-y for me.  Morse's previous album, The Grand Experiment, was underwhelming, as was the most recent Transatlantic album.  I guess the upshot to my rambling is there's a lot of hit-or-miss with Neal :lol:
 
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sat Dec 24, 2016 12:41 am

Yeats wrote:
I like both Flying Color albums well enough, but sort of passively.  The second one is a bit more proggy.

I guess I should give the second one a chance; I completely ignored it when it came out (off the top of my head I don't even know what it is called). I posted my thoughts on the first one shortly after it was released.
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sat Dec 24, 2016 11:12 am

just brew it! wrote:
Yeats wrote:
I like both Flying Color albums well enough, but sort of passively.  The second one is a bit more proggy.

I guess I should give the second one a chance; I completely ignored it when it came out (off the top of my head I don't even know what it is called). I posted my thoughts on the first one shortly after it was released.

Damn, I forgot we had that conversation!  Maybe because a couple days after that my g/f was hospitalized for 2 weeks and nearly died. I don't visit TR so much any more since I no longer work in the industry and my computer enthusiasm has waned. 
While listening to Similitude I remembered that you are a prog enthusiast and figured I'd post.  Hopefully it's something that you enjoy.  2016 had been a bit underwhelming in releases from bands/musicians that I typically pay attention to, up until Similitude.  Maybe we'll get a new Steven Wilson album in 2017.  HCE is great, but I do have to be in a particular mood to listen to it.
 
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sat Dec 24, 2016 12:49 pm

Yeats wrote:
While listening to Similitude I remembered that you are a prog enthusiast and figured I'd post.  Hopefully it's something that you enjoy.

Based on the links you posted, and some of the other tracks that were on YouTube, I believe I will.

Yeats wrote:
2016 had been a bit underwhelming in releases from bands/musicians that I typically pay attention to, up until Similitude.  Maybe we'll get a new Steven Wilson album in 2017.  HCE is great, but I do have to be in a particular mood to listen to it.

You could go check out the most recent 3 Opeth albums, if you haven't already. They ditched the Death Metal aspect of their sound entirely and have pretty much gone full-on retro prog. FWIW Steven Wilson mixed and sang backing vocals on Pale Communion (their second-to-last album, released in 2014).

The opening track from Pale Communion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pUk4l_VMskg

(Not that I have anything against their earlier, more aggressive stuff... it has really grown on me, growled vocals and all. But this new direction they've taken these past few years is potentially of interest if you're a prog fan.)
The years just pass like trains. I wave, but they don't slow down.
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sat Dec 24, 2016 3:39 pm

Red Hot Chili Peppers - newest album 'The Getaway'. I love the title track !! Its a very different RHCP album, but its growing on me as a long time Peppers fan. My fave album has to be 'I'm With You', their 2011 release. So many great tracks on that one !! Of the 14 songs, I have 10 of them ripped and playing on my commute to work, including 'Brendan's Death Song', 'Factory of Faith', 'Ethiopia', and 'Police Station', one of their best songs that matches 'Under the Bridge' in its beauty.
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Sat Dec 24, 2016 7:27 pm

Phaxe & Morten Granau - The Collective
Progressive Psy I think.
 
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Mon Dec 26, 2016 12:48 pm

just brew it! wrote:
You could go check out the most recent 3 Opeth albums, if you haven't already. They ditched the Death Metal aspect of their sound entirely and have pretty much gone full-on retro prog. FWIW Steven Wilson mixed and sang backing vocals on Pale Communion (their second-to-last album, released in 2014).

The opening track from Pale Communion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pUk4l_VMskg

(Not that I have anything against their earlier, more aggressive stuff... it has really grown on me, growled vocals and all. But this new direction they've taken these past few years is potentially of interest if you're a prog fan.)

Thanks for the link - that was excellent.  Opeth kinda fell off my radar after I got bored with Heritage, although I was glad Akerfeldt ditched the growls.  I'll have to rediscover them.
 
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Mon Dec 26, 2016 2:47 pm

Yeats wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
You could go check out the most recent 3 Opeth albums, if you haven't already. They ditched the Death Metal aspect of their sound entirely and have pretty much gone full-on retro prog. FWIW Steven Wilson mixed and sang backing vocals on Pale Communion (their second-to-last album, released in 2014).

The opening track from Pale Communion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pUk4l_VMskg

(Not that I have anything against their earlier, more aggressive stuff... it has really grown on me, growled vocals and all. But this new direction they've taken these past few years is potentially of interest if you're a prog fan.)

Thanks for the link - that was excellent.  Opeth kinda fell off my radar after I got bored with Heritage, although I was glad Akerfeldt ditched the growls.  I'll have to rediscover them.

On Heritage it seems like they were still trying to sort out exactly what their new direction would be, throwing a bunch of stuff at the wall to see what would stick. Things jelled on Pale Communion, IMO.
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Mon Dec 26, 2016 2:59 pm

golden earring: twilight zone

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a1sf2CzEq0w
 
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Mon Dec 26, 2016 3:10 pm

CScottG wrote:
golden earring: twilight zone

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a1sf2CzEq0w

Oh, crap. I've been working on filling in some of the holes in my music collection, and you've just reminded me that I need to add Golden Earring to the list. I guess I'm off to Allmusic now, to figure out which of their albums I need.
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Mon Dec 26, 2016 3:29 pm

just brew it! wrote:
Oh, crap. I've been working on filling in some of the holes in my music collection, and you've just reminded me that I need to add Golden Earring to the list. I guess I'm off to Allmusic now, to figure out which of their albums I need.

Has anyone heard more than the basic pair of Golden Earring tunes?
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Mon Dec 26, 2016 3:43 pm

Captain Ned wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
Oh, crap. I've been working on filling in some of the holes in my music collection, and you've just reminded me that I need to add Golden Earring to the list. I guess I'm off to Allmusic now, to figure out which of their albums I need.

Has anyone heard more than the basic pair of Golden Earring tunes?

They've apparently released a rather extensive list of albums over the years, of widely varying quality... looks like they're still together, with their latest album released just a few years ago (in 2012).
The years just pass like trains. I wave, but they don't slow down.
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Re: What are you listening to RIGHT NOW?

Mon Dec 26, 2016 5:56 pm

Jimmy Herring - Subject To Change Without Notice (2012)

I was prompted to check Herring out based on his contribution to Gary Husband's 2012 release Dirty And Beautiful Volume 2. His guitar playing on the track "England Green" is absolutely stunning; not in a flashy, million-notes-a-second way, more in a chills-down-my-spine way. It made me go "Whoa... who is this, and why haven't I heard more of him?"

Anyhow, back to the album at hand. He's released a few solo projects over the years, and this is (I think) the most recent one. Some terrific instrumental music here, more or less in a fusion vein but covering a fair amount of territory. Mostly original material, plus 3 covers (of songs by George Harrison, Mahavishnu Orchestra, and Jimmy McGriff). Fantastic stuff.

I also need to check out the band Aquarium Rescue Unit (which he was/is a member of)...
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