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NEW MUSIC: Steve Hackett announces release of new album “Surrender of Silence”

Steve Hackett

 

Legendary guitarist Steve Hackett, releases his new studio rock album Surrender of Silence on 10th September 2021, via Inside Out Music. The album features 11 new songs as Steve Hackett has been working hard through Lockdown and, the first time, has completed two studio albums for release within the same year!

Hot on the heels of his classical-acoustic travelogue Under A Mediterranean Sky, which was released in January and hit Number 2 in the UK Classical Album Chart, Surrender of Silence is a further exploration of Hackett’s love of world music, discovering different sounds, moods and textures to deliver a rock album of extraordinary variety, power and beauty.

As with Under A Mediterranean Sky, Surrender of Silence was also recorded during Lockdown and, again, Hackett has called upon some of his musical friends from across the world to contribute. Hackett’s regular touring band of Roger King (keyboards, programming and orchestral arrangements), Rob Townsend (sax, clarinet), Jonas Reingold (bass), Nad Sylvan (vocals) and Craig Blundell (drums) are supplemented by Phil Ehart and Nick D’Virgilio (drums), the vocal talents of Amanda Lehmann, Durga and Lorelei McBroom, Christine Townsend (violin, viola), Malik Mansurov (tar) and Sodirkhon Ubaidulloev (dutar).

This new album is full-on electric…

“Lockdown cobwebs are blown away in one fell-swoop here!” says Steve Hackett. “With the monster rhythm section of Jonas, Craig, Nick and Phil along with Rob’s soaring sax and bass clarinet, Nad, Amanda and myself on vocals, Roger’s darkly powerful organ and my guitar, we plunge full-pelt into that wild release of energy.”

Our journey takes us from the classical orchestrations of Russia (Natalia) to the plains of Africa (Wingbeats) to mysterious Eastern shores (Shanghai To Samarkand), all via the ocean’s depths (Relaxation Music for Sharks (featuring feeding frenzy)). The Devil’s Cathedral pools the talents of Hackett’s entire touring band and features King’s atmospheric Gothic organ and a powerhouse rhythm display from Blundell and Reingold.

Hackett’s vocals have never been bettered and his duet with Amanda Lehmann adds emotion to Scorched Earth a lament for the environmental horrors facing our planet. Throughout Hackett’s guitars add a rich tapestry of colour with soaring solos and intricate weaving melodies.

“It’s a ‘no holds barred’ album,” adds Hackett, “riding that wave, unleashing those demons, dreams and nightmares, all crashing together over the shore.

“I enjoyed the power of this album allowing my guitar to scream in joy and rage… and once again flying across those oceans to distant lands. It’s terrific to connect creatively with musicians from far flung places, particularly when we’ve all been unable to meet. We all have a voice in our cacophony of sound and we cry out together in the Surrender of Silence!”

 

Steve Hackett “Surrender of Silence” track listing:

1. The Obliterati (02:17)
2. Natalia (06:17)
3. Relaxation Music For Sharks (Featuring Feeding Frenzy) (04:36)
4. Wingbeats (05:20)
5. The Devil’s Cathedral (06:31)
6. Held In The Shadows (06:20)
7. Shanghai To Samarkand (08:27)
8. Fox’s Tango (04:21)
9. Day Of The Dead (06:25)
10. Scorched Earth (06:03)
11. Esperanza (01:04)

 

Steve Hackett - Surrender Of Silence

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Steve Hackett announces new album ‘Surrender of Silence’

Legendary guitarist Steve Hackett will release his new studio rock album Surrender of Silence on 10th September 2021, via Inside Out Music. The album features 11 new songs as Steve has been working hard through Lockdown and, for the first time, has completed two studio albums for release within the same year!

Hot on the heels of his classical-acoustic travelogue Under A Mediterranean Sky, which was released in January and hit Number 2 in the UK Classical Album Chart, Surrender of Silence is a further exploration of Hackett’s love of world music, discovering different sounds, moods and textures to deliver a rock album of extraordinary variety, power and beauty.

As with Under A Mediterranean Sky, Surrender of Silence was also recorded during Lockdown and, again, Hackett has called upon some of his musical friends from across the world to contribute. Hackett’s regular touring band of Roger King (keyboards, programming and orchestral arrangements), Rob Townsend (sax, clarinet), Jonas Reingold (bass), Nad Sylvan (vocals) and Craig Blundell (drums) are supplemented by Phil Ehart and Nick D’Virgilio (drums), the vocal talents of Amanda Lehmann, Durga and Lorelei McBroom, Christine Townsend (violin, viola), Malik Mansurov (tar) and Sodirkhon Ubaidulloev (dutar).

This new album is full-on electric…

“Lockdown cobwebs are blown away in one fell-swoop here!” says Steve Hackett. “With the monster rhythm section of Jonas, Craig, Nick and Phil along with Rob’s soaring sax and bass clarinet, Nad, Amanda and myself on vocals, Roger’s darkly powerful organ and my guitar, we plunge full-pelt into that wild release of energy.”

Our journey takes us from the classical orchestrations of Russia (Natalia) to the plains of Africa (Wingbeats) to mysterious Eastern shores (Shanghai To Samarkand), all via the ocean’s depths (Relaxation Music for Sharks (featuring feeding frenzy)). The Devil’s Cathedral pools the talents of Hackett’s entire touring band and features King’s atmospheric Gothic organ and a powerhouse rhythm display from Blundell and Reingold.

Hackett’s vocals have never been bettered and his duet with Amanda Lehmann adds emotion to Scorched Earth a lament for the environmental horrors facing our planet. Throughout Hackett’s guitars add a rich tapestry of colour with soaring solos and intricate weaving melodies.

“It’s a ‘no holds barred’ album,” adds Hackett, “riding that wave, unleashing those demons, dreams and nightmares, all crashing together over the shore.

“I enjoyed the power of this album allowing my guitar to scream in joy and rage… and once again flying across those oceans to distant lands. It’s terrific to connect creatively with musicians from far flung places, particularly when we’ve all been unable to meet. We all have a voice in our cacophony of sound and we cry out together in the Surrender of Silence!”

Steve Hackett “Surrender of Silence” track listing:
1. The Obliterati (02:17)
2. Natalia (06:17)
3. Relaxation Music For Sharks (Featuring Feeding Frenzy) (04:36)
4. Wingbeats (05:20)
5. The Devil’s Cathedral (06:31)
6. Held In The Shadows (06:20)
7. Shanghai To Samarkand (08:27)
8. Fox’s Tango (04:21)
9. Day Of The Dead (06:25)
10. Scorched Earth (06:03)
11. Esperanza (01:04)

Steve Hackett shares writing credits with both Jo Hackett and Roger King on several tracks. All tracks were recorded by Roger King and produced by Steve Hackett with Roger King at Siren.

Surrender of Silence is released on 10th September 2021 as a Limited Edition CD+Blu-ray Mediabook in hardcover slipcase, Standard CD Jewel case, Gatefold 2LP+CD & LP-Booklet and Digital Album via Inside Out Music.

Prog Report Playlist – Steve Hackett

 

The post Steve Hackett announces new album ‘Surrender of Silence’ appeared first on The Prog Report.

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Beyond the Genesis Divide: Finding Middle Ground in the Gabriel-Collins Debate

By Nick Tate

Phil Collins or Peter Gabriel?

The question has divided Genesis fans for decades. Now, with two different “Genesis” bands touring this year — catering to both sides of the Gabriel-Collins divide — the debate is steaming up on social media.

On one side: Fans who relish the band’s arty progtastic 1970s heyday with Gabriel at the helm. On the other: Collins-era devotees who boarded the Genesis train after the drummer replaced Gabriel on vocals and the band became a pop-hit factory in the 1980s and 1990s.

But what’s missed in the Genesis debate is the astonishingly inventive period that marked the band’s transition from the Gabriel era to the Collins years. From 1974 to 1978, Genesis recorded four remarkable studio albums, just as punk was ascending and progressive rock seemed on the ropes.

Each record was groundbreaking in its own way. And all four were so distinctly different, from one to the next, they sound as if different musicians might have produced them.

With two competing “Genesis” crews about to hit the road — the Collins-led “Last Domino?” tour and guitarist Steve Hackett’s “Genesis Revisited” collective reprising the 1970s era — now is the perfect time to take a closer look at the band’s rich In-Between Years.

If you don’t know this middle period of Genesis, there’s no better introduction to the band. If you’re a longtime fan, these albums are worth revisiting. For audiophiles: Seek out the remastered re-releases, featuring Nick Davis’s sparkling 5.1 surround sound remixes.

But before we dive into this Genesis treasure trove, a little background…

The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway

In November 1974, Genesis released its sixth — and some would say best — studio recording, The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway. The two-disc set is a sprawling concept album showcasing the most experimental music and surrealistic lyrical content of the band’s long history.

It captured the classic Genesis lineup at the absolute top of its game — Gabriel on vocals and flute, Collins on drums, Hackett on guitars, Tony Banks on keys and Mike Rutherford on bass. But the recording of the album also laid the groundwork for what was to come — Gabriel’s departure from Genesis and Collins’ move to center stage, a shift that would produce a huge change in the band’s sound, style and direction.

Gabriel, who came up with the original story of The Lamb, took on the writing of virtually all the lyrics and left much of the musical composition to the others. That was a departure from the band’s collaborative writing process and left Gabriel isolated.

Well-publicized creative tensions within the band intensified during the recording sessions. Those strains exploded as Genesis hit the road in October for a 102-date European and North American tour, with the band staging the album as a theatrical audio-video performance that was trail-blazing for its day.

Just weeks into the tour, Gabriel announced plans to leave for a solo career and to make more time for his growing family. He also hoped to work on a screenplay with William Friedkin, director of The Exorcist (which never materialized). But the band kept the decision under wraps until the tour’s end in June 1975, hoping he’d change his mind (he didn’t).

Yet despite all the behind-the-scenes acrimony, The Lamb stands as the most accomplished Genesis effort of the Gabriel years — making it a desert-island selection for many prog fans

Lyrically, the album is built around the surrealistic story of Rael, a Puerto Rican street punk who undertakes a spiritual journey of self-discovery in a Matrix-like alternate world below the streets of New York City.

It’s more contemporary than typical early Genesis fare, which tended toward Victorian-esque fairytales and Elizabethan fantasies. There are no accounts of man-eating hogweeds or promiscuous hermaphrodites. No stories about magical musical boxes, Arthurian legends or mystical messianic characters.

Instead, The Lamb is a stark and vivid exploration of coming-of-age angst — sexual politics, adolescent rage and anti-establishment fury — not very far removed from what the Sex Pistols and Ramones would later shout about.

Even Gabriel’s voice is edgier and more intense on The Lamb, a far cry from the ancient-mariner’s croon that defined the early Genesis sound.

Musically, the album is a remarkable leap forward from the band’s previous five albums. From the opening title track, the sound is fresh and updated. Higher production values give the band a cleaner, less cluttered sound. And having Brian Eno onboard, adding musical touches and textures — dubbed “Enossification” — enhanced the overall effect (best example: Gabriel’s treated vocals on “The Grand Parade of Lifeless Packaging”).

From start to finish, there is an ebb and flow to this epic album. It features extended tracks that have a live-in-the-studio energy, laidback instrumental interludes and long solo passages that give each player the opportunity to take virtuosic breaks.

More than any other Genesis album, The Lamb reveals what each member brought to the table and how the whole was more than merely the sum of its parts:

• On symphonic-prog rockers like “Broadway Melody of 1974,” “Back in New York City” and “The Colony of Slippermen,” the quintet cooks with daredevil-may-care intensity and tautly precise ensemble performances.

• Banks delivers some of finest performances of his career on the jazzy “Riding the Scree,” piano-driven “The Lamia” and sweeping “Carpet Crawlers” (originally conceived as an instrumental).

• Hackett’s fretwork is absolutely sublime, on ghost-y electric and intricate acoustic guitar. Standout tracks “Cuckoo Cocoon,” “Here Comes the Supernatural Anesthetist” and “Chamber of 32 Doors” qualify as his best work in and out of Genesis.

• Rutherford and Collins provide a sturdy and complex rhythm foundation throughout — most notably tearing it up on “In the Cage” (a perennial staple of live Genesis sets for years to come) and rollicking “Lilywhite Lilith.”

• The album even features a free-form, noise-rock interlude, “The Waiting Room,” which plays like prog’s answer to the Beatles’ “Revolution No. 9.”

But the album-closing “It” — the last recorded Genesis track with Gabriel — is the biggest revelation on the record. It’s a showstopper that sounds like nothing else the band had ever done — a fusion-influenced prog workout that offers a preview of the post-Gabriel Genesis to come.

A Trick of the Tail

In 1975, with Gabriel out of the picture, the remaining four members faced a daunting challenge: How to continue on without its iconic front man and vocalist?

It was like the Rolling Stones moving on without Mick Jagger or Led Zeppelin without Robert Plant. Should Genesis soldier on as an instrumental outfit? Recruit a new singer? Or disband entirely, with each member following Gabriel’s lead and going solo?

In the end, Hackett, Collins, Banks and Rutherford decided to continue on as a foursome. And within weeks of Gabriel’s departure, they were writing new music.

The only question: Who would sing the new material?

Initially, the band auditioned hundreds of singers — with Collins later acknowledging some 400 audition tapes were made. But none fit the bill. In the end, Collins stepped up and said he’d like to give it a go.

Looking back, the decision seems inevitable. Collins had taught the new songs to the auditioning vocalists. He’d also sung backup to Gabriel and provided lead vocals on a few Genesis tracks (“For Absent Friends” and “More Fool Me”). The band also had to know that having Collins step up to the mic would be embraced by fans because he was an insider, giving Genesis a sentimental leg up as it transitioned to a new era.

In February 1976, the landmark album, A Trick of the Tail, was released to massive critical and popular acclaim. Even Gabriel, who visited the band in the studio during the album’s recording, would later say he was surprised by how little effort it took for the guys to produce such strong material without him.

The first track written for the album — the propulsive Tolkien-inspired “Dance on a Volcano” — plays like a declaration of independence from the ghost of Genesis past. A heavy prog-rocker in 7/4 time, the piece kicks off the record and crackles along at breakneck speed through a series of musical themes and crazy time signatures. For anyone who feared Genesis were done, or resting on its past glories, this song alone decisively puts those concerns to rest.

Other standout tracks include Bank’s classically inspired “Mad Man Moon,” the acoustic guitar-driven “Ripples” and “Entangled” and two upbeat prog-rockers — “Squonk” (designed to sound like Led Zeppelin’s “Kashmir”) and the comical “Robbery, Assault and Battery.”

But, as on The Lamb, the closing track here — “Los Endos” — is the biggest departure for Genesis to date, providing a glimpse of things to come. Written by all four members, it is the band’s first jazz-rock instrumental, introducing a new musical direction Genesis would build upon for its next release.

Listen closely and you can hear Collins reprising the “angel standing in the sun” line from 1973’s classic “Supper’s Ready” near the end of the track — a wink and a nod to fans who stuck with the band after Gabriel’s departure.

Wind and Wuthering

After a successful 1976 North American and European Tour, Genesis went back into the studio to record a follow-up, Wind and Wuthering, released in December.

Critics and fans warmed to the new album, which expanded on the new musical ground broken by A Trick of the Tail. But three distinct aspects of the record — and the way it was produced — would lead to another critical lineup change for the band: Hackett’s departure.

No. 1: Banks is primary songwriter on Wind and Wuthering, with most tracks — including the “Eleventh Earl of Mar,” “One for the Vine,” “Afterglow,” and “All in a Mouse’s Night” — based on music he’d written. Hackett would later say his own musical ideas for the album were rejected in favor of Banks’s material. Even so, the guitarist’s lone contribution — “Blood on the Rooftops” — is perhaps the strongest piece here and Hackett’s best post-Gabriel Genesis effort.

No. 2: Three instrumentals — “Wot Gorilla?” “Unquiet Slumbers for Sleepers…” and “In that Quiet Earth” — extrapolate from the jazz-prog fusion ideas first introduced in “Los Endos.” Hackett’s stunning acoustic and electric fretwork on these tracks offers a clear glimpse of the musical direction he would later pursue as a solo artist.

No. 3: Rutherford’s sweetly saccharine love song, “Your Own Special Way” would become the band’s first charting single, consolidating the band’s growing popularity and marking the biggest step from prog to pop for Genesis — a move that would come to define the band’s focus for the next two decades. It even earned Genesis a spot on the Mike Douglas Show. (Check YouTube for the performance and watch for Collins missing his cue to begin lip-synching the song, probably because the show used the edited single version of the track and not the full album version, which has a longer instrumental intro).

After another successful world tour in 1977 — which produced the live “Seconds Out” double album, and the release of a throwaway three-track EP, Spot the Pigeon — Hackett left Genesis in October.

His departure surprised almost no one. By then, he’d produced his first solo album, 1975’s genre-busting Voyage of the Acolyte, with Rutherford and Collins guesting. He had also started writing his second solo, 1978’s wildly eclectic Please Don’t Touch!, featuring tracks that his Genesis bandmates had rejected and guest vocalists Rich Havens, Steve Walsh (Kansas) and Randy Crawford.

And Then There Were Three

In 1978, with Genesis now reduced to a trio, the band produced its most commercially successful outing of the decade, And Then There Were Three. For Collins-era fans, it is the most accessible of its 1970s recordings. It is the breakthrough album that would bring the band new legions of fans across the globe.

Most tracks are short, stripped-down affairs built around Collins’ vocals. Conspicuously absent are the grand musical ideas and extended solos that marked the classic Genesis sound. Banks composed or co-wrote eight of the 11 tracks and Rutherford handled all the fretwork, giving the album a frustrating sameness in style and “Genesis lite” quality.

Even so, And Then There Were Three features several flashes of prog brilliance, particularly on the Rutherford-penned “Deep in the Motherlode” and “Snowbound.”

At the other end of the spectrum, the album also features, “Follow You, Follow Me,” the band’s highest-charting single to that point (No. 7 in the U.K. and 23 in the U.S.). On the strength of the single, and its wide FM radio play, the album went on to be certified platinum (selling one million copies) by the Recording Industry Association of America.

Some 43 years later, this album — above all others — is the most controversial line in the sand for fans on opposing sides of the Genesis divide.

For Gabriel and Hackett fans, it marked the end of the band’s status as prog-rock pioneers and a strident move into yacht-rock territory. But for devotees of the Collins-Banks-Rutherford era, it ushered in the band’s most popular period, as the trio became a global powerhouse that would last Collins departed after 1991’s We Can’t Dance.

Worth noting: During the recording of And Then There Were Three, all three members of Genesis were already laying the groundwork for solo projects that, in retrospect, provide an interesting sidelight. Banks, Collins and Rutherford would go on to produce soft-rock debuts that echoed the radio-friendly Genesis sound — Banks’ A Curious Feeling and Rutherford’s Smallcreep’s Day and Collins’ top-selling Face Value.

Those recordings starkly contrast the challenging post-Genesis material Hackett was producing at the time, which incorporated elements of jazz, classical, prog, folk, soul and even cabaret. They were also vastly more conventional than Gabriel’s extraordinary 1977 solo debut, which embraced everything from heavy rock (“Modern Love) to lounge jazz (“Waiting for the Big One”), folk pop (“Solsbury Hill”) orchestral rock (“Here Comes the Flood”) and even barbershop-quartet whimsy (“Excuse Me”).

Looking Ahead: What Would Fans Most Like to Hear?

So, as the “Genesis Revisited” and “Last Domino” tours prepare to hit the road, the question for fans on all sides is: What will the two bands perform live and what tracks would most fans like to hear?

It’s too early to predict set lists. But it’s a good bet that both touring bands will feature tracks from some these definitive Genesis albums recorded between 1974 and 1978.

Hackett has already announced plans to perform Seconds Out in full. And on the last Collins-Banks-Rutherford reunion tour in 2007, nine of the trio’s 21-song set list were taken from that remarkable middle period in the band’s history.

All of which is to say: Regardless of which side of the Genesis divide you’re on, 2021/2022 promise to be a feast for the ears.

The post Beyond the Genesis Divide: Finding Middle Ground in the Gabriel-Collins Debate appeared first on The Prog Report.

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Hear “Have A Cigar” featuring James LaBrie, Steve Stevens and Patrick Moraz

One of the most iconic characters ever created in song – the smarmy, nefarious record executive dreamt up by Roger Waters for Pink Floyd’s 1975 single “Have A Cigar,” who infamously asked “Which one’s Pink?” – is being brought to life in a whole new way, courtesy of the legendary voice of prog metal superstars Dream Theater, James LaBrie, and a spectacular new concept video from award-winning director Vicente Cordero of Industrialism Films. LaBrie’s superb rendition of the song, taken from the just released album ‘Still Wish You Were Here – A Tribute To Pink Floyd’, gives the lyrics a far more sinister edge than the original recording, as does the razor-sharp guitar work from Steve Stevens, which contrasts nicely with the laid-back rhythm section composed of The Damned’s Rat Scabies and Public Image Ltd.’s Jah Wobble and some supremely tasteful keyboard work from The Moody Blues’ Patrick Moraz. This fantastic new version of the song inspired the first-ever dramatic portrayal of this character, performed by seasoned character actor Noel Jason Scott for Cordero’s video, as a stylish Mephistopheles who casually tempts a young, naive musician into a malevolent Faustian bargain that grants him all the riches and rewards of rock superstardom before exacting a treacherous toll.

Watch the video here:

Pink Floyd’s 1975 album, Wish You Were Here, surely counts as one of the greatest rock albums of the 20th century. A musically and emotionally complex tribute to the band’s former leader, vocalist Syd Barrett, whose deteriorating mental health had caused the band to oust him in 1968, the album has become a touchstone for a generation of artists who sought to achieve the synthesis of brilliant, multi-part suites, poignant ballads, and heady melodic rockers that Roger Waters, David Gilmour, Richard Wright, & Nick Mason realized on this album.

And now, a stunning all-star line-up of rock and metal royalty have gathered to recreate this epic masterpiece as a testament to its long-enduring legacy. Still Wish You Were Here includes awe-inspiring performances from keyboard wizard Rick Wakeman, Deep Purple drummer Ian Paice, Rock Hall of Fame nominee Todd Rundgren, ex-Queensrÿche vocalist Geoff Tate, guitar god Joe Satriani, Dream Theater vocalist James LaBrie, spacebass super genius Bootsy Collins, The Damned’s Rat Scabies, PiL’s Jah Wobble and lots more! Get ready to fall in love with this classic record all over again.

Still Wish You Were Here will be available on both CD in a beautiful 6-panel deluxe digipak and a stunningly gorgeous gatefold vinyl in a variety of colors!

Pre-order the album: https://orcd.co/still_wish_you_were

Track List:
1. Shine On You Crazy Diamond (Parts 1-5) – Geoff Tate, Steve Hackett, Billy Sheehan, Mel Collins, Geoff Downes, Ian Paice
2. Welcome To The Machine – Todd Rundgren, Rick Wakeman, Tony Levin
3. Have A Cigar – James LaBrie, Steve Stevens, Patrick Moraz, Rat Scabies, Jah Wobble
4. Wish You Were Here – Rik Emmett, Joe Satriani, Edgar Froese, David Ellefson, Carmine Appice
5. Shine On You Crazy Diamond (Parts 6-9) – Rod Argent, Steve Hillage, Ian Paice, Bootsy Collins

The post Hear “Have A Cigar” featuring James LaBrie, Steve Stevens and Patrick Moraz appeared first on The Prog Report.

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Quick plays: PINK FLOYD TRIBUTE, UNTIL THE SUN, CIRCUS MIND

VARIOUS - Still Wish You Were HereVARIOUS Still Wish You Were Here (Cleopatra Records) [Release date 28.05.21] Continuing the theme of “what do rock stars do in Lockdown?”, in this example Cleopatra’s A&R supremo John Lappen has opened his contact book.  Unlike many of these offerings … Continue reading

The post Quick plays: PINK FLOYD TRIBUTE, UNTIL THE SUN, CIRCUS MIND appeared first on Get Ready to ROCK!.

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PODCAST: Ultimate Genesis Album with Nad Sylvan

Singer Nad Sylvan has been touring with Steve Hackett for years performing Genesis classics and receiving tons of praise for his brilliant interpretations on the songs. He has also released several great solo albums in recent years. His latest Spiritus Mundi is out on April 9th. On this new podcast, Sylvan talks about his latest solo album, touring with Steve Hackett performing Genesis songs, and helps us put together the Ultimate Genesis Album. Spiritus Mundi is out on April 9th.  Get the new album here:https://nadsylvanmusic.lnk.to/SpiritusMundi

You can read our review here.

(Audio Note: there is a beep that happens in the background when Nad speaks in the first 10 minutes)

For the full audio click the podcast link or download the podcast on
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You can also subscribe to our YouTube channel

 

“Spiritus Mundi” tracklisting:
1. The Second Coming (7:00)
2. Sailing to Byzantium (6:41)
3. Cap and Bells (4:47)
4. The Realists (2:18)
5. The Stolen Child (4:58)
6. To An Isle In The Water (4:36)
7. The Hawk (4:09)
8. The Witch and The Mermaid (1:57)
9. The Fisherman (5:28)
Bonus Tracks
10. You’ve Got To Find A Way (5:55)
11. To A Child Dancing In The Wind (5:08)

After the conclusion of the successful trilogy of albums following the tales of “The Vampirate” (2015’s Courting the Widow, 2017’s The Bride Said No, and 2019’s The Regal Bastard), vocalist Nad Sylvan was considering a different approach for his next project. A surprise collaboration on his last album would serve as the inspiration for his latest release, Spiritus Mundi.

“After I had finished my trilogy, I thought what should I do now? Well, a couple of years ago, a songwriter by the name of Andrew Laitres asked me if I could sing on a song he was working on. It ended up on my previous album The Regal Bastard as a bonus track called “The Lake Isle of Innisfree.” I was thinking I’d like to work with this guy again to see if we can come up with something together. So, I listened to some of his demos and I thought, why don’t we develop these songs together into proper songs with great arrangements. I suggested this to him and he was in.”

The album centers around the poems coming from Nobel Prize winning William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) and who Sylvan calls ‘one of the finest poets to come out of Ireland.’ The lyrics for “The Lake Isle of Innisfree” that I initially sang on the previous album are also from Yeats, so I just thought why not just use some really fantastic lyrics, so I don’t have to write them this time. (laughs) It was just kind of nice not having to write the lyrics and focus solely on the music.” As for the meanings in the songs, Sylvan prefers to leave those up to interpretation. “Yeats had a lot of double meanings to his poems and I’m yet to find out some of those, but just the sound of the words and the meaning that I could grasp, I thought was absolutely wonderful.”

The post PODCAST: Ultimate Genesis Album with Nad Sylvan appeared first on The Prog Report.

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Nad Sylvan – Spiritus Mundi (Album Review)

by Geoff Bailie

It would seem I was the obvious choice to review Spiritus Mundi, the new album by Nad Sylvan… I’ve been an avid follower of his career since he joined The Agents of Mercy with Roine Stolt, eventually worked with Steve Hackett and has recorded a series of fantastic solo albums… but it’s not just that! Sylvan’s latest album is filled with musical interpretations of the poetry of William Butler Yeats, possibly the foremost Irish literary figure of the 20th century – being Irish, that would make me the logical choice right? However, don’t think for a moment that this album is some sort of folk rock workout. Yeat’s use of allusion and symbolism mean his words make absolutely great lyrics, and particularly suit this genre!

The album stems from Nad’s collaboration with songwriter Andrew Laitres, and their first collaboration which was a bonus track on Sylvan’s last album The Regal Bastard called “The Lake Isle of Innisfree,” also based on words by Yeats. So really a full album in a similar vein was the logical next step.

Stylistically, it’s is a step forward from some of the more traditional prog stylings of his trilogy of solo albums, taking a more orchestrated/ melodic approach, and making use of Laitres’ voice to support and supplement the familiar Sylvan tones. That said, the music is no less inventive and adds depths with repeated listening and exploring. The orchestral opening of “The Second Coming,” is supplemented by a distorted voice reciting Yeats’ words, before the track strips to a strummed acoustic guitar, accompanying the familiar Sylvan tones. With Sylvan and Laitres covering many of the instruments, occasional guest spots from familiar names such as Tony Levin, Jonas Reingold and Steve Hackett add different colors, along with The Flower Kings’ Mirkko De Malo joining on drums.

Fans of Sylvan won’t need to be told how versatile and full of feeling his vocals are. If you take a track like “Sailing to Byzantium,” Yeats’ paean to an old man’s metaphorical journey towards his own vision of paradise, the shifts and twists in the vocal and melodic styles take you on the journey in a way that absolutely complements the lyrical themes, without playing safe. It’s a great balance of interesting music and lyrics with depths of meaning. The album has some wonderful overblown moments, nicely offset by more voice/ acoustic focused tracks such as “Cap and Bells” and “The Realists.”

When you listen to “The Stolen Child,” you could be forgiven for thinking that the lyrics, that tell the story of a child lured away by faeries, are a homage to songs like “The Fountain of Salmacis” or “The Musical Box.” This track is a great example of how the words lend themselves to the format, moving as they do with the cadence of a ballad, complete with a chorus like refrain. “To An Isle In The Water” is a poem which has been covered by various folk acts already – but not like this! This song has a fantastic vocal soundscape, built on a bed of acoustic guitars and vibes.

“The Hawk” moves from the more acoustic tracks to a more uptempo song, which allows Sylvan to emote at the top of his range, as the backing track paints the picture of the bird of the title soaring through the sky. The closing song “The Fisherman” is a triumphant ending, and possibly my favorite track on the album. Yeat’s portrait of the ideal man, doesn’t hide the flawed edges that we all have. A very effective middle section sung by Andrew Laitres serves as an effective contrast on this track and throughout.

For those with the CD (which also comes free with the record) there are 2 bonus tracks to uncover at the end of the album. “You’ve Got To Find A Way” was written by Sylvan, and isn’t a Yeats lyric. It’s a positive and upbeat anthem, encouraging the listener to follow their path. In these unusual times, it’s an uplifting track, with a nice rhythm section groove. The final bonus cut, “To A Child Dancing In The Wind,” is a beautiful pastoral piece with Nad’s “boss”, Steve Hackett, on 12 string guitar. Once again, this track features the complementary vocal styles of Sylvan and Laitres, interacting in a Gabriel/ Collins style, with Nad’s baritone offset by a mid section focused on Andrew’s higher tones.

In a recent podcast, Nad told us that his friend Roine Stolt declared the album Nad’s career best. With no disrespect to what came before, I would absolutely agree with that. It’s filled with great songs and arrangements, intriguing lyrics and is quite simply a showcase for his voice – the meticulous attention to detail that Nad has paid to ensuring the material here is conveyed in the best possible light has really paid off. My feeling is that this is an album that I will keep coming back to this year, and will no doubt be revisiting when the end of year best of lists are being drawn up.

Released on April 9th, 2021 on InsideOutMusic

Key Tracks: Sailing to Byzantium, The Hawk, The Fisherman

“Spiritus Mundi” tracklisting:
1. The Second Coming (7:00)
2. Sailing to Byzantium (6:41)
3. Cap and Bells (4:47)
4. The Realists (2:18)
5. The Stolen Child (4:58)
6. To An Isle In The Water (4:36)
7. The Hawk (4:09)
8. The Witch and The Mermaid (1:57)
9. The Fisherman (5:28)
Bonus Tracks
10. You’ve Got To Find A Way (5:55)
11. To A Child Dancing In The Wind (5:08)

https://nadsylvanmusic.lnk.to/SpiritusMundi

The post Nad Sylvan – Spiritus Mundi (Album Review) appeared first on The Prog Report.

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Nad Sylvan releases new video for single “The Hawk”

Before the release of his new album “Spiritus Mundi” on April 9th, 2021 Nad Sylvan is happy to be announcing yet another single and accompanying video, this time for “The Hawk”. The song’s lyrics are based on a poem by Nobelprize winning author W. B. Yeats.  The music is based on a primitive guitar/vocal demo by Andrew Laitres, which Nad then developed into the actual song.

Watch the video here:

“Spiritus Mundi” is available as Special Edition CD Digipak (incl. 2 bonus tracks), 180g Gatefold LP Vinyl Edition (incl. the entire album on CD) and as Digital Download. You can pre-order the album here:
https://nadsylvanmusic.lnk.to/SpiritusMundi

“Spiritus Mundi” tracklisting:
1. The Second Coming (7:00)
2. Sailing to Byzantium (6:41)
3. Cap and Bells (4:47)
4. The Realists (2:18)
5. The Stolen Child (4:58)
6. To An Isle In The Water (4:36)
7. The Hawk (4:09)
8. The Witch and The Mermaid (1:57)
9. The Fisherman (5:28)
Bonus Tracks
10. You’ve Got To Find A Way (5:55)
11. To A Child Dancing In The Wind (5:08)

After the conclusion of the successful trilogy of albums following the tales of “The Vampirate” (2015’s Courting the Widow, 2017’s The Bride Said No, and 2019’s The Regal Bastard), vocalist Nad Sylvan was considering a different approach for his next project. A surprise collaboration on his last album would serve as the inspiration for his latest release, Spiritus Mundi.

“After I had finished my trilogy, I thought what should I do now? Well, a couple of years ago, a songwriter by the name of Andrew Laitres asked me if I could sing on a song he was working on. It ended up on my previous album The Regal Bastard as a bonus track called “The Lake Isle of Innisfree.” I was thinking I’d like to work with this guy again to see if we can come up with something together. So, I listened to some of his demos and I thought, why don’t we develop these songs together into proper songs with great arrangements. I suggested this to him and he was in.”

The album centers around the poems coming from Nobel Prize winning William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) and who Sylvan calls ‘one of the finest poets to come out of Ireland.’ The lyrics for “The Lake Isle of Innisfree” that I initially sang on the previous album are also from Yeats, so I just thought why not just use some really fantastic lyrics, so I don’t have to write them this time. (laughs) It was just kind of nice not having to write the lyrics and focus solely on the music.” As for the meanings in the songs, Sylvan prefers to leave those up to interpretation. “Yeats had a lot of double meanings to his poems and I’m yet to find out some of those, but just the sound of the words and the meaning that I could grasp, I thought was absolutely wonderful.”

The post Nad Sylvan releases new video for single “The Hawk” appeared first on The Prog Report.

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Album Review: STEVE HACKETT – Under A Mediterranean Sky

STEVE HACKETT - Under A Mediterranean SkyInside Out  –  Release date: 22 January 2021 Being the modest chap that he is, Steve Hackett would probably not describe himself as a virtuoso. However, in a career spanning getting on for fifty years from the early days of … Continue reading

The post Album Review: STEVE HACKETT – Under A Mediterranean Sky appeared first on Get Ready to ROCK!.

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Steve Hackett ‘Seconds Out + More’ USA Shows Rescheduled For Spring 2022

Steve and band would have loved to return to the USA this Spring but unfortunately that won’t be possible.
The good news is that all the shows that had to be postponed due to Covid19 have now been rescheduled for Spring 2022 AND to thank fans for their patience those shows (and ONLY those 8 cities) will feature a very special setlist including Selling England By The Pound in its entirety PLUS the classic Genesis live album – Seconds Out!

Current tickets are valid for the new shows and your seat allocation will be the same… and if you don’t already have tickets get them now before the shows are all sold out!

Spring 2022
April 06 – Harrisburg, PA – Whittaker Centre
April 08 – Collingswood, NJ – Scottish Rite Auditorium
April 09 – Collingswood, NJ – Scottish Rite Auditorium
April 14 – Durham, NC – Carolina Theatre
April 16 – Atlanta, GA – Variety Playhouse
April 19 – Ponte Vedra, FL – Ponte Vedra Concert Hall
April 20 – Orlando, FL – Plaza Live
April 22 – Clearwater, FL – Bilheimer Capitol Theatre
April 23 – Ft. Lauderdale, FL – Parker Playhouse
More dates for the main Seconds Out + More USA & Canada Tour 2022 will be announced very soon!

Seconds Out was the hugely successful double album recorded on Genesis’ 1977 concert tour together with The Cinema Show, from their 1976 tour, and featured Steve Hackett on guitar alongside Mike Rutherford, Tony Banks and Phil Collins who had taken on the role of vocalist following the departure of Peter Gabriel. The tour included music from each of the six studio albums from Steve’s time in Genesis and marked his final recordings with the band as he left to pursue his solo career upon its completion.

The post Steve Hackett ‘Seconds Out + More’ USA Shows Rescheduled For Spring 2022 appeared first on The Prog Report.

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