Next To None Announces Sophomore Album’s Release Date

Courtesy: EMP Label Group/InsideOut Music

Next To None will release its sophomore album this summer.

Phases will be released July 7 via EMP Label Group in North America and InsideOut Music in Europe.  The announcement this week comes on the heels of the completion of the band’s European tour with Haken.

Work on the new record started last October and took approximately four months. Drummer Max Portnoy said the band in whole has been anticipating the album’s release.  He said that was because of the work put in by the band’s members in making the album become a reality.

“We’re so excited to finally be releasing our new album” Portnoy said.  “We feel it’s a huge step forward for the band and shows a much heavier and much more technical side.  This album is very special to us because it’s the first time we recorded and self-produced our entire album.  We were able to create music that is completely our own.  Every note, every sound, every word came from us, and we can’t wait for you all to hear it.  I suppose you could say what we’ve done here is do more of everything we did before but the greater experience we now have has helped us become better at what we want to do.”

Phases marks the debut for new guitarist Derrick Schneider with the band.  Schneider joined the band from a recommendation by former Guns N’ Roses guitarist Rob “Bumblefoot” Thal, who also made a guest appearance on the band’s debut album.  Ryland Holland left the band left the band last year to study at Berklee College of Music.

The band will hit the road alongside label mates Doll Skin this summer in celebration of the album’s release. The dates for that tour will be announced soon.  More information on those dates is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.nexttonone.net

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NextToNoneband

Twitter: http://twitter.com/NextToNoneBand

 

 

 

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Devin Townsend Project Announces New Live Dates

Courtesy: InsideOut MUsic

Courtesy: InsideOut MUsic

Devin Townsend Project announced a new string of live dates this week that is set to begin in April.

The band announced Wednesday it will embark on a two-week tour in support of its latest album Transcendence.  The tour is scheduled to begin April 28 in Pamona, CA and run through May 14 in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Joining the band as support on select dates will be Gojira, Opeth and Mastodon.  Thank You Scientist and Oni will be co-headliners along with DTP on other select dates.  The bands’ complete tour schedule is noted below.

DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT – Upcoming US Dates
Friday, April 28th – Pomona, CA @ The Glass House*
Saturday, April 29th – Flagstaff, AZ @ The Orpheum*
Sunday, April 30th – Albuquerque, NM @ Sunshine Theater*
Tuesday, May 2nd – St Louis, MO @ The Ready Room*
Thursday, May 4th – Cleveland, OH @ House of Blues*
Friday, May 5th – Pittsburgh, PA @ Mr Smalls*
Saturday, May 6th – Philadelphia, PA @ Electric Factory^^
Sunday, May 7th – Sayreville, NJ @ Starland Ballroom^
Tuesday, May 9th – Chicago, IL @ The Vic Theatre^
Thursday, May 11th – Denver, CO @ Red Rock Amphitheatre^
Friday, May 12th – Kansas City, KS @ Arvest Bank Theatre^
Saturday, May 13th – Indianapolis, IN @ Egyptian Room^
Sunday, May 14th – Cincinnati, OH @ Bogart’s**

* – Headlining with Thank You Scientist & ONI
** – Headlining with Thank You Scientist
^ – Supporting Opeth & Gojira
^^ – Supporting Mastodon, Opeth & Gojira

Transcendence was recorded at The Armoury Studios in Vancouver, Canada with Townsend and Adam “Nolly” Getgood (Periphery, Animals as Leaders).  The band recently unveiled the video for the album’s latest single ‘Stormbending,’ which can be seen here.

Courtesy: InsideOut MUsic

Courtesy: InsideOut MUsic

More information on Devin Townsend Project’s new tour schedule is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.hevydevy.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/dvntownsend

 

 

 

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Leprous Embarks On New Tour

Courtesy:  InsideOut Music

Courtesy: InsideOut Music

Leprous is heading back out on the road.

The Norwegian prog-metal quintet recently announced a new slate of tour dates that takes it to Australia and across Europe this winter, spring, and summer. The band’s current schedule kicked off January 30th in Perth, Australia. Next up for the band is a performance in Brisbane on February 5th, and then Melbourne on February 6th. The band’s current schedule also includes a performance in Israel on March 23rd. After finishing up its show in Israel, Leprous will kick off its latet European tour schedule on Marh 31st in Berlin, Germany. The twelve-date schedule includes dates in France, Switzerland, Germany, and Belgium just to name a handful and runs through August 8th. The band’s current tour schedule is note below:

05.02.2016 Brisbane (Australia) – The Brightside / http://www.thebrightsidebrisbane.com.au + Voyager *

06.02.2016 Melbourne (Australia) – The Evelyn Hotel / http://www.evelynhotel.com.au + Voyager *

23.03.2016 Tel-Aviv (Israel) – Theatron Tmuna *

31.03.2016 Berlin (Germany) – Musik & Frieden / http://www.musikundfrieden.de + Voyager & Earthside / Tickets *

01.04.2016 ‘s Hertogenbosch (The Netherlands) – W2 / www.w2.nl + Voyager & Earthside / Tickets

02.04.2016 Helmond, (The Netherlands) – Cacaofabriek / www.cacaofabriek.nl + Voyager & Earthside / Tickets

03.04.2016: Hoofddorp (The Netherlands) – Podium Duycker / www.duycker.nl + Voyager & Earthside / Tickets

05.04.2016 Hamburg (Germany) – Logo / www.logohamburg.de + Voyager & Earthside / Tickets

06.04.2016: Essen (Germany) – Turock / www.turock.de + Voyager & Earthside / Tickets

07.04.2016 Pratteln (Switzerland) – Z7 / www.z-7.ch + Voyager & Earthside / Tickets

08.04.2016 Strasbourg (France) – La Laiterie / http://www.artefact.org + Voyager & Earthside / Tickets

09.04.2016 Durbuy (Belgium) – Durbuy Rock Festival / www.durbuyrock.be + Voyager & Earthside / Tickets

28.-30.04.2016 Koparvik/Haugesund (Norway) – Karmoygeddon Metal Festival / www.karmoygeddon.no

23.06.2016 Halden (Norway) – Tons Of Rock / www.tonsofrock.no

08.08.2016 Josefov (Czech republic) – Brutal Assault / www.brutalassault.cz

More tourdates in the works…

Leprous’ latest album The Congregation was recently nominated for Best Metal Album in the Spellemannprisen, Norway’s equivalent of The Grammys. Also nominated in that category were Enslaved, Tsjuder, and Kampfar. Kampfar came out on top in that one. That aside, the band and its fans still have plenty to be happy about. The band also recently debuted the lyric video for ‘Slave,’ from The Congregation. Audiences can check it out now via YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2GWPzBXNY2g&feature=youtu.be. Along with that the band also premiered a tour documentary that audiences can also check out for themselves. It can be viewed via YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DTAsVeos4Bg&feature=youtu.be. If that isn’t enough the video for ‘The Price’ is also available now online via YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0G9Qd_84YZs&feature=youtu.be. ‘Rewind’ can also be heard online via SoundCloud now at https://soundcloud.com/officialinsideoutmusic/leprous-rewind/.

 

Courtesy:  InsideOut Music

Courtesy: InsideOut Music

The Congregation is available now in stores and online. It can be ordered online at:

InsideOut Music: https://www.insideoutshop.de/Search?q=The+Congregation

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Congregation-Leprous/dp/B00VU7KYPI?tag=smarturl-20

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/leprous/id322022617?app=itunes&ign-mpt=uo%3D4

Germany (JPC): https://www.jpc.de/jpcng/poprock/detail/-/art/leprous-the-congregation/hnum/7268465

More information on Leprous’ current tour schedule is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

Website: http://www.leprous.net

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/leprousband

Twitter: http://twitter.com/leprousband

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertaiment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Leprous Debuts Lyric Video For Its Latest Single

Courtesy:  InsideOut Music

Courtesy: InsideOut Music

Norwegian prog-metal act Leprous has debuted the lyric video for its latest single ‘Slave.’

The video presents the lyrics to the band’s new single over a changing image of chain link. Created by Twilight 13 Media’s Costin Chioreanu, the video can be viewed online now via YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2GWPzBXNY2g&feature=youtu.be.

Courtesy:  InsideOut Music

Courtesy: InsideOut Music

‘Slave’ is the follow-up to ‘Rewind,’ the lead single from the band’s latest full-length studio release The Congregation. Audiences can see the video for that song online now via YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0G9Qd_84YZs&feature=youtu.be. The Congregation entered the charts at #78 in Germany, #66 in The Netherlands, #167 in 167 in Belgium, and #39 in Finland. North American fans can order the CD in bundle packs with t-shirts online at http://www.manicmusiconline.com/.

More information on The Congregation is available online now along with all of the latest news from Leprous at:

Website: http://www.leprous.net

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/leprousband

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Next To None Debuts Lyric Video For New Single

Courtesy:  InsideOut Music

Courtesy: InsideOut Music

Up-and-coming progressive rock band Next To None has debuted the lyric video for its new single ‘Blood on My Hands.’

Courtesy:  InsideOut Music

Courtesy: InsideOut Music

The video’s premiere comes a week ahead of the band’s debut album A Light in the Dark (InsideOut Music). The song, which closes out the album, is a commentary on the recent outbreak of shootings that have plagued the country in recent months. As vocalist/keyboardist Thomas Cuce explains, “At the time [I wrote the lyrics] it seemed like every day there was a different person going crazy somewhere and shooting up a building or whatever, and I would ask myself ‘Why does this keep happening? What was that person thinking? What led them to do this?” He added, “So I tried to put myself in this person’s head. I created a character and started from the aftermath of the event, which is where we first hear about it in the news.” Of the song’s extended arrangement, he says, “It took us months to write this song and then months to learn it. We had a big dry erase board that we used to chart out all the parts with the time signatures until we had them memorized.” Audiences can check out the video online now via YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2qFfHWrXyMk&feature=youtu.be. Audiences can also check out a stream of the song ‘You Are Not Me,’ online now via SoundCloud at https://soundcloud.com/officialinsideoutmusic/next-to-none-you-are-not-me/s-rVJzu. ‘You Are Not Me’ is also one of the tracks included in Next To None’s upcoming album. Pre-orders for A Light in the Dark are available now online at http://www.radiantrecords.com/products/577-next-to-none-a-light-in-the-dark-cd.aspx.

Next To None is: Thomas Cuce (keyboards, vocals), Ryland Holland (guitar), Kris Rank (bass) and Max Portnoy (drums). The band’s album was produced by Max Portnoy’s famed father Mike Portnoy (ex-Dream Theater, Winery Dogs, Liquid Tension Experiment). It features guest appearances from Guns N’ Roses guitarist Bumblefoot on the song ‘A Lonely Walk’ and prog-rock legend Neal Morse (ex-Spock’s Beard, Transatlatic, Yellow Matter Custard). The complete track listing for A Light in the Dark is noted below.

A Light in the Dark’ tracklist:

  1. The Edge Of Sanity
  2. You Are Not Me
  3. Runaway
  4. A Lonely Walk
  5. Control
  6. Lost
  7. Social Anxiety
  8. Legacy
  9. Blood On My Hands

Digital-only bonus tracks:

  1. Fortune Cookie
  2. Deafening

 

More information on Next To None, including its latest news, is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.nexttonone.net

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NextToNoneband

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Leprous’ Latest LP Is One Of This Year’s Top New Prog-Rock & Metal Albums

Courtesy:  InsideOut Music

Courtesy: InsideOut Music

Fourteen years have passed since the progressive metal band that is Leprous first formed. In the years since, Leprous has kept itself quite busy releasing three albums, one demo record and an EP. This year, the band released its fourth full-length studio effort. It goes without saying that in comparison to those previous recordings, the band’s new album The Congregation is its best work to date. That is because it has taken the various sounds crafted in the band’s previous trio of records and used them to create a sound that just as with its previous releases is unlike any other progressive rock or metal act out there today. That is obvious right off the top in the album’s opener ‘The Price.’ The band members’ talents set against the song’s seeming slow two-time signature alone make it quite the first impression on this record. The song’s cryptic, thought-provoking lyrics add even more interest to this piece. ‘Third Law,’ the album’s second song, is just as exemplary of what makes The Congregation such a powerful work. Much as with the album’s opener, the rather melancholy tone of the song’s musical content set against its equally powerful lyrics make for another prime example of why The Congregation stands out not just among Leprous’ overall body of work but among other prog rock and metal albums released so far this year. The same can be said of the album’s third entry ‘Rewind.’ Solberg’s vocal delivery in this song coupled with the work of his band mates and the song’s lyrics show once more why The Congregation stands out both among Leprous’ overall body of work and among every other prog-rock and prog-metal band out there today. Whether for these songs or the others not noted here, audiences will agree that The Congregation has a lot to offer audiences. And in offering so much both musically and lyrically, it can be easily said again that this record is Leprous’ best effort to date.

Leprous’ latest full-length studio release The Congregation is the best effort so far from the Norwegian prog-metal band. That is because it incorporates the various elements of its previous releases into each of its twelve total tracks. The result of that incorporation is twelve songs that stand out completely not only from any of Leprous’ previous compositions but twelve songs that stand out starkly from anything churned out by any other prog-rock and prog-metal band out there today. That is obvious right off the top in the album’s opener ‘The Price.’ The most impressive aspect of this song is its musical content. The song comes in just under the 5:30 mark. In that time, it utilizes a variety of time signatures. Throughout all of those time changes, the band’s members–Einar Solberg (vocals, keyboards), Tor Oddmund Suhrke (guitar), Oystein Landsverk (guitar), and Baard Kolstad (drums)–never once lose their place. Kolstad’s time keeping is impeccable through it all. The work of Surhke and Landsverk is just as precise. Audiences can see and hear for themselves that precision as the band recently debuted the video for ‘The Price’ online. It can be experienced online now via YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0G9Qd_84YZs. While the musical component of ‘The Price’ does plenty to make it stand out, its lyrical content does just as much to hold listeners’ attention. Solberg sings in this song, “Piercing his eyes/Scars you can’t see/Cutting profound/Places you don’t want to be/Climbing a mountain/Crossing a sea/The gutter parts us from the rain/Up on the hill/Tough and alone/Perfectly filling his desolate throne/Friendly betrayal/Somber delight/Treating his tumor/Without a fight.” There is a lot of metaphorical writing here. The song’s first verse, which ends with Solberg singing, “Climbing a mountain/Crossing a sea,” comes across as referencing someone fighting some powerful emotional demons. The song’s second verse is just as thought-provoking. Surhke, who wrote the song, uses some intriguing imagery (E.g. a gutter, a lone hilltop, and an empty throne) in this verse. The imagery in question would seem to continue hinting at the imagery of someone being alone. As always, such an interpretation could easily be wrong. By no means is this interpretation meant to be gospel. It would be interesting to learn the full meaning behind all three of the song’s verses. But one must admit that using such metaphorical and cryptic language makes clear why this song was chosen to open The Congregation. Coupled with the song’s fully thought out musical content, it makes the song one that will definitely leave a lasting impression on listeners.

The impression that ‘The Price’ leaves on audiences with its combination of stand-out musical content and equally thought-provoking lyrics makes clear why it was chosen to open The Congregation. It is just one song from this record that will leave an impression on audiences. Leprous follows it up with yet another song that will leave just as much of an impact on listeners in the form of the album’s second song ‘Third Law.’ Much as with the album’s opener, this song also boasts an interesting mix of time signatures throughout its six-minute-plus run time. Considering this, one could almost argue it to be not just prog-rock or prog-metal but math metal, too. And yet again the band’s members work like a well-oiled unit from measure to measure never once losing their place. This song’s lyrical content set against the song’s musical content will keep listeners just as engaged as the combination presented by the album’s opener. Surhke seems to be a little clearer with his message in this song as he writes, “On the rise/Going up/First to be alone at the top/No delusion in your mind/Peripheral vision left behind.” Surhke comes across here as commenting about those that would do whatever it takes to get to the top first not even caring about those around them (I.E. peripheral vision left behind). He goes on to write in the song’s second verse, “Felt inside/Something alive/Devious instinct to survive.” That would seem to leave little doubt as to what Surhke is saying. And if it doesn’t then the song’s closing verse definitely does as he writes, “Real compassion obsolete/Camouflaging indiscrete.” He comes across as commenting on those whose concern for others on their way up is clearly fake and those that act as such do so with little concern as to whether or not others catch on. Once more, this could be entirely off the mark. But it would seem to be rather clear what Surhke is saying here. Either way, the combination of Surhke’s thought-provoking lyrics and the song’s musical content, co-composed by Surhke and Solberg, is just as certain to keep listeners’ ears and in turn lead to plenty of discussion among fans and listeners alike. That being the case, it shows exactly why ‘Third Law’ is another impressive addition to The Congregation. It also shows the sheer depth of substance offered by Leprous on its latest LP.

Both ‘Third Law’ and ‘The Price’ show in their own way just how much Leprous has to offer audiences on its new album. That is thanks to the very depth of the songs’ musical and lyrical content. They are just a couple of examples of how much the band has to offer audiences on this record. ‘Rewind’ the record’s third offering also shows plenty of depth both musically and lyrically. Musically, the way that the song gradually builds from its opening bars to the sound that makes up the rest of the song will especially grab listeners. That is especially the case as Solberg’s vocals are added in. There is almost a Maynard James-Keenan feel to his delivery. On the same note, Kolstad’s drumming is on par with that of Tool’s Danny Carey with his talents. Yet again Surhke adds his own depth with his lyrical content. He writes in this song, “Build up/Tear down/Set free/Rewind/The circle is ending/I’m done pretending/Left behind/Resist to be reputed/Protect the undisputed/Behold your insufficiency/Wistfully/Behold your demolition/Assume there’s no ambition/None better suited.” This verse is just as deep and cryptic as the lyrical content of the album’s first pair of songs and its other compositions, too. It’s only one verse, too. The remainder of the song’s lyrical content is just as deep. No doubt it will create just as much discussion among audiences as will the song’s musical content. Both elements taken together, they prove exactly why ‘Rewind’ is yet another prime example of how much Leprous has to offer on this record. Whether it be for this song, either of the previously noted pair of songs or for any of the others not noted here, it goes without saying that The Congregation in whole is one of the best of the prog-rock and metal community so far this year. It also proves in whole to be Leprous’ best record to date.

Leprous offers audiences quiet the depth both musically and lyrically on it latest effort. Whether through its first trio of songs or for any of its other songs, The Congregation shows time and again over the course of its dozen total songs how much it has to offer listeners. All twelve songs considered together, they show The Congregation to be the band’s best work to date and one of the best new prog-rock/metal albums of 2014. The Congregation is available now in stores and online. Audiences can also pick up the album at any of Leprous’ live shows. Speaking of which the band has just announced a new handful of dates on its already packed tour schedule. Fans can check out those dates and get all of the latest news from the band online now at:

Website: http://www.leprous.net

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/leprousband

Twitter: http://twitter.com/leprousband

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Ayreon Turning Classic Album Into New Live Stage Production

Courtesy:  InsideOut Music

Courtesy: InsideOut Music

Eleven years after it was originally released on CD, prog-rock band Ayreon will bring its concept record The Human Equation to life.

InsideOut Music announced today that Ayreon will present “The Human Equation Theater Experience” this fall. The once-in-a-lifetime theater production will be presented Tuesday, September 8th – Thursday, September 20th at the nieuwe Luxor theater. It is being presented by the production company Shadow Freaks, which is led by Aryeon founder Arjen Athony Lucassen’s former manager Yvette Boertje. The original list of vocalists tapped to perform on The Human Equation will also be part of the album’s live theaterproduction. That list includes: James LaBrie, Devon Graves, Heather Findlay, Eric Clayton, Marcela Bovio, Magnus Ekwall, Irene Jansen, Wudstik, Anneke van Giersbergen and Mike Mills.

Along with the record’s original cast of vocalists, the theater production will also feature Ed Warby, Johan van Stratum, Jeroen Goossens, Ben Mathot and Maaike Peterse, Marcel Coenen, Freek Gielen, Erik van Ittersum and Ruben Wijga. Joost van den Broek will serve as music director and arranger. The production will also feature performances from The Epic Rock Choir, which was assembled especially for the show.

Originally, “The Human Equation Theater Experience” was going to run only three dates. But those dates sold out so fast that a fourth performance on the afternoon of the 19th was added. At the time of this posting, tickets for that fourth showing were still available and could be purchased online at http://www.thetheaterequation.com/. More information on the show, including its full cast and more is available at this same website as well as via Facebook and Twitter at:

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/thetheaterequation

Twitter: http://twitter.com/theaterequation

The story behind The Human Equation follows a comatose man battling his emotions within his own mind as he lays in his hospital bed. He also encounters memories both good and bad along the way that lead to some powerful revelations and hope-filled desires. At the story’s end, the man is left to choose: Does he wake up and live or does he die?

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.