Neal Morse: Testimony 2 in Budapest

On the 11th of June 2011 in Budapest I have seen the best progressive rock concert ever. I used to say that Neal Morse is the best progressive music composer in the world: but now I think he’s better.

The venue: Diesel club – in what seemed to be one of the suburbs of Budapest. It was a small place but the sound was good and there was no smoke inside. The place was not overcrowded but the public was from the quality area. J I do not think Neal was disappointed with us.

 

The show: This was the best show ever; the people in the Diesel club must have been the most inspired ones from Hungary. The band played for over three hours although this was the fifth gig in a row with no brake day. But none of the players looked tired to me. They had so much energy, so much precision and they displayed so high skills.

Neal Morse was of course the heart of the show. Fabulous keyboard playing and mind blowing guitar solos. I knew him master of the keys but man! I have never seen him play the guitar like this. He was a god – and if you think that’s heretic check out psalm 82. Neal had so many joyful moments on the stage: when he sang true joy could be read from his face. He put his heart in every line his singing was such a powerful testimony. But also when the others play he blended in so well and was really enjoying the music, the good prog. It was a thrill seeing him so passionate about music. Where do you get all that energy Neal?

 

Colin Leijenaar. His drumming was awesome: the powerful style, good rhythm and amazing skill. Seeing him play made me think that he really burns slow music.

Kristoffer Gildenlow was a great presence in this set. He completed the great rhythm section and I think he was exactly what a bass player should be: not very visible on the scene but essential to a good performance.

Paul Bielatowicz. His guitar was a thrill to listen. Great technical skills, good vibe on the rhythm section and much emotion on the slower parts and solos.

Nathan Brenton was a good partner for Paul, as can be seen in the photo. He also played the cello.

  

Ben Mathot. He seemed to be a very talented violin player and really got the attention of the crowd in some moments.

Jessica Koomen. She had a good contribution to the rhythm section (tambourine) and had a nice voice. Great to hear so fine voices on the acapella part.

Ola Heden. I did not see him very much as he was placed in the rear of the scene, but I think he was responsible for those lovely fusion sounds.

So, if you could have come to Neal’s concert and did not, then it was one of your biggest misses. A fabulous band led but the greatest composer out there. Symphonic sound, awesome virtuous music, great progressive composition. Thank you Neal and God bless! Although this has just ended I already want to see you again.

Here’s a video I took:

Rating: 10/10

Alexandru Tomescu la Cluj

Chiar dacă mâine nu voi putea să merg la concertul lui Alexandru Tomescu – Paganini: Înger sau Demon – 24 Capricii, am reuşit să aud minunatul sunet al viorii Stradivarius azi la TedxCluj. A cântat Bach şi un capriciu al unui compozitor polonez al cărui nume nu l-am reţinut.

Alexandru Tomescu –  Photo by LiftingShadows, (c) 2011

Îmi cer scuze pentru mâna tremurândă:

Concert anulat

De săptămâna trecută de când am luat biletul pentru concertul Bartok-Enescu am avute emoţii văzând numărul redus de bilete vândute: vreo 20 (?). Azi m-a incomodat o premoniţie legată de o eventuală anulare a concertului. Şi mă întreb dacă lipsa de interes a publicului poate fi motivul pentru această dezamăgire. Şi cât de rar se cântă Bartok la Cluj.

Dacă s-a anulat… corect?

Playlistul trebuia să fie:

Bela Bartok – Sonata pentru vioara si pian, op. posth
George Enescu – Sonata nr. 2 pentru pian si vioara in fa minor, op.6
Bela Bartok – Cantece populare maghiare (ar. de Joseph Szigeti)
George Enescu – Sonata nr. 3 pentru pian si vioara in la minor, op. 25 – “In caracter popular romanesc”

Kevin Moore: Shine

Release date: 8th October 2010

01. Shine Intro

02. Window Theme
03. Departures
04. Uyku
05. Arrivals
06. Graveyard View
07. Hypnogogic
08. Mosquito Dream
09. Korkma
10. Zeki Cycle
11. Hypnopompic
12. Bulutlar
13. Mezar Isimleri
14. Lights Out
15. Sh
16. Çıkmak
17. Shine

Total time 41:10

Line-up

– Kevin Moore / all music written and performed by
– Bige Akdeniz / Vocals
Label: Self Released

Hearing this album for the first time made me whisper: “I missed this!”. The general impression is that of a emotional-thriller ambiance and it is somewhat similar to Ghost Book but also made me think of GMH. The tone is that of a “sad sad movie”. Overall, the compositions are beautifully simple, some very short, giving you the desire to keep listening them over and over again. Sometimes beauty lies in simplicity. It can be said that the songs of the album are highly emotional and incredibly melodic. There are also some noise influences on and other bright minimalist soundscapes. I so missed Kevin’s piano and keys playing!

Shine is of course the most beautiful song of the album, and the fact that Shine intro opens the disc -just to closed it later- makes this masterpiece a circular album. The female voice is so silky and fits in perfectly. Window theme reminds me of good old Kevin in his Chroma Key moods. Uyku is an alert composition filled with suspans, mystery and pressure. There are a few very short songs which fill in the album and round the clear/obscure atmosphere. Korkma is a longer song and it is more elaborated while Zeki Cycle is the one that reminded me of GMH. Lightout is a more dramatic and dynamic song.

A few years ago while living in Istanbul, I wrote and recorded a soundtrack for a film called Kucuk Kiyamet (“Little Apocalypse“), a kind of supernatural, post-traumatic drama centered on Turkey’s recent earthquakes. The film was nominated for some Turkish Film Critics Association (SİYAD) awards, including one for the soundtrack. However, the soundtrack CD was never released in Turkey as planned, so I would like to self-release it.

Kevin Moore

Rating: 10/10

248 copies through kickstarter project, but extra copies can still be ordered from Kevin. There are some 1.000 signed copies to order from here.

Paradigma: stai aproape

Lansat pe 30 decembrie 2010
Track Listing

1. Stai aproape (2:18)
2. Nu pot să-nţeleg (2:51)
3. Nu mă tem (3:10)
4. Ridică-mă (4:18)
5. Vino (3:15)
6. Singur (3:07)
7. Atât de aproape (3:26)
8. Chiar dacă tu nu vrei (2:57)
9. O mare de oameni (3:26)

10. Alungă ploaia (4:32)

11. Flollow me [bonus] (3:08)

Line-up

– Dorin / Vocals, Guitar
– Nick / Bass, background vocals
– Andrei / Keyboards, synths, background vocals
– Sergiu / Drums, background vocals

Casa de discuri: Self Released


ParadigmA este o trupă relativ recent apărută în peisajul muzicii autohtone însă s-a făcut remarcată deja printr-o prezenţă semnificativă şi constantă pe scena rockului românesc. Paradigma a fost finalistă Maximum Rock – Suport pentru underground in 2009, clasându-se pe locul 7 din 51 de formaţii iar anul trecut a luat locul I la Proms of Delight Music Fest desfăşurat sub egida Jeunesses Musicales International.

Stai aproape, albumul lansat la sfârşitul anului 2010, marchează debutul discografic al trupei şi surprinde prin maturitatea muzicală a compoziţiilor. Piesele, deşi în general scurte, sunt bine lucrate şi au fără excepţie un sound foarte bun (albumul a fost înregistrat şi mixat în studioul Viţa-de-Vie şi produs de Paradigma).

La fel ca şi prezentarea grafică, albumul este relizat într-o cheie cu tonalităţi întunecate, având un ambient dark. Atmosfera este echilibrată pe de-o parte de inserţiile clapelor care accesibilizează demersul muzical dar şi de părţi mai puţin alerte, completate de secţiuni meditative care transmit uneori şi emoţii pozitive (inclusiv prin intermediul versurilor).

“Piesa de rezistenţă” a albumului este O mare de oameni, care ar fi putut foarte bine deschide acest album. Secţiunea ritmică este foarte bine aranjată, bassul inserat în partea de început a piesei fixează direcţia de desfăşurare. Partea instrumentală este densă şi solidă, refrenul este foarte atrăgător şi radio-friendly, iar mesajul de rebeliune şi condamnare a lumii superficiale din jur întregesc piesa.

Follow me încheie discul şi nu ştiu de ce figurează ca piesă bonus pe album, fiind una dintre cele mai reuşite compoziţii.

Rating: 7.5/10

Albumul poate fi comandat aici.