Showing posts from July, 2021

Igor Richardovich Savitch (06/29/1960 - 07/24/2021) - RIP

  On Saturday the 24th of July Igor Savitch passed away, only a week after being admitted to the hospital due to feeling only slightly ill. It is one more tragedy that took place due to the Covid -19 pandemic, and a great loss for the music scene in Uzbekistan. For 35 years Igor led his band Flight 09 through tours at home and abroad, starting out when Uzbekistan was still a part of the Soviet Union back in 1986. The band's first six albums were released for the home market only, but in that initial phase the band also managed to tour abroad on multiple occasions in Holland and in the US. From 2002 and onward their next seven albums were made available internationally. The band had many plans going forward, and among those plans was the desire to return to the international tour scene. The loss of Igor is a great loss to his family and friends as well as his band members, but also a loss for the Uzbekistan music scene. A friendly and supporting artist, Igor Savitch was a good frien

Enslaved - 2020 - Utgard

(44:46; Nuclear Blast) As with virtually every band, Norwegian group Enslaved have been through line-up changes over the years, and indeed they now have a new drummer since the last album in Iver Sandøy, yet founders and childhood friends Ivar Bjørnson (guitars) and Grutle Kjellson (vocals) are still there, as they have been now for some 30 years (the band is completed by Arve Isdal, lead guitar, and Håkon Vinje, keyboards, vocals). They first came to prominence with a split release with Emperor all the way back in 1993, but like Ihsahn, they have now come a long way from those days, although even now they still look back to their roots. They may have been a death metal band at the beginning, but now they are firmly entrenched in a progressive metal vein of their own making. Vocals switch between clean and gruff; the keyboards provide polish, the drums are all over the place, and the guitars never stop. They are incredibly tight, witness the ending to Homebound , which is chaotic a

The Flower Kings - 2020 - Islands

(95:57; Inside Out Music) The Flower Kings are back with their second album since their break, which saw long-time keyboard player Tomas Bodin no longer in the band. These days the line-up is Roine Stolt vocals, ukulele, guitars, additional keyboards and Hasse Fröberg (vocals, acoustic guitar), who has also been there since the beginning, bassist Jonas Reingold, who has now celebrated 20 years in the role, plus the new guys, Zach Kamins (keyboards) and Mirko DeMaio (drums). I have always been interested in The Flower Kings since I heard Roine’s solo album which led to the group being formed, more than 25 years ago. However, although I loved their early albums, since then I have been somewhat wary of new releases as to my mind, they can either be wonderful or overblown and way too long. So, what is Islands like? The first thing I do now with an album by them is check the length, and this one is more than 90 minutes in length which sent up a warning sign for me, but only amber and no

Arnoldo's Lizards - 2021 - Satanic Attack or Divine Punishment

(23:28; Melodic Revolution Records) The latest signing to Melodic Revolution Records is a duo based in Mar del Plata, Argentine, comprising Alvare Goco (vocals and backing vocals) and Jack Dimensions (vocals, backing vocals, piano, keyboards, synthesizers, and programming). For the album they have also been joined by Elías Ciambotti (bass and electric guitars), Ezequiel Volpe (bass), Randall Lewer (electric guitars), Florabril Leguimus (backing vocals) and Andres Guazzelli (backing vocals). The only way to really describe this album is as art rock, as musically this is all over the place. The main feature of the album are the vocals of Alvare who sounds as if she has been classically trained, and is simply wonderful, but the songs themselves are a very strange combination of different styles. The first time I played this I did so four times back-to-back, and by the end of it I was still confused by what I was hearing, and I still cannot decide if the issue is with me or with the musi