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reviews roundup 2019-3

Cranston IISlug Comparison - When You Were Living Herefred mika - withdrawal symptomsD'Ercole - Made To BurnThe Essential Claudio Delgift

 

 

 

 

Lots of new reviews headed our way recently. So time for another roundup:

  • Dutch site Rockportaal were happy with the second Cranston album and describe it as “tasty melodic hardrock in a modern jacket, inspired by older work. Fans of Eighties rock can buy this on sight”.
  • the second Rockportaal review concerns Slug Comparison. Writer Edwin says that “Doug Harrison shows himself an accomplished writer with songs that both lyrically as well as musically are of high calibre. An album that deserves your attention”
  • French site Metal Integral next. First Cranston – II gets 17/20 points! “an album that will energise your days”
  • Another 17/20 for last years effort from Fred Mika – Withdrawal Symptoms and as they put it “it is never too late to showcase who are both gifted as passionate!”
  • Mr. H. from UK site The Rocker did not like all of the D’Ercole album Made To Burn, but did say that what he likes “will be a treat for fans of eighties styled melodic rock” Find the review dated February 12 here
  • on to German site Musik Reviews. First a 12/15 for Cranston! Their conclusion is “Above average good, ultra-conservative and therefore surprise-free AOR or melodic rock of two absolute professionals in this field”
  • no rating for Claudio Delgift’s The Essential, but they do say it is “likely to appeal to prog rock to metal listeners and friends of virtuously played electric guitars”
  • Alas they were one of the few so far not totally impressed by Slug Comparison album When You Were Living Here (10/15). Reading the comments however, I am not sure were the comparisons to Rush and prog-light are coming from?
  • Then Brazil, a staggering 9.5/10 for Fred Mika coming from Roadie Metal!
  • Then back the UK’s The Rocker. Lots of praise from Mr. H for Claudio Delgift in the February 19 edition of reviews. “There are complex arrangements but it’s all underpinned by a strong sense of melody that keeps you hooked. He’s certainly worthy of being better known so fingers crossed this does its job”. We hope so too!

A big thanks to all the writers!

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reviews roundup 2019-02

souls of deaf - fortune favors the boldSlug Comparison - When You Were Living Heremarenna - livin no regretsCranston IISunrise Auranaut - InserterIt is time to update you on the next batch of reviews we want to share with you!

 

  • First one is from mr. H. (The Rocker) about Souls Of Deaf (January 22). He does not like the name or all of the tunes, but says “There are some good tunes and riffs on offer”
  • French site Neo Prog write a very fine piece about the latest Slug Comparison. Some of their words (translated): “Definitely, it is more than recommended to explore the Slug Comparison universe; between shadow and light, acoustic and electric, this opus listens to one stroke as it is judiciously balanced and you will become indispensable”
  • Next is Get Ready To Rock, also about Slug Comparison. Jason Ritchie says “Those already familiar with his solo work will certainly want this, along with those who enjoy prog rock with a distinct alternative edge”
  • Rocktopia/ Fireworks’ Mick Parry had this to say about Marenna:  “The album oozes a vibrant, melodic sound and it’s easy to pick up the influences from the past, but these guys have added a touch of flair to it all. In Rodrigo Marenna, they have a great front-man with the pipes to match the best out there. If you like Melodic Rock with an edge, go for this and you’ll have ‘No Regrets'”
  • Word wizard Dmitry Epstein wrote about Cranston: ” this little ensemble with a big sound follow their debut record with a sophomore effort that bares their arena-minded ambition” and hands a 3 3/4 out of 5 stars for the album
  • Your Music Blog say about Cranston “prove that Phil and Paul have a great thing going. Fingers crossed we are treated to more of this”
  • Something For The Weekend include Slug Comparison in the 5 albums you need to hear for January
  • Felonafan wrote a 4 star review for Sunrise Auranaut, and says it’s a “good addition to many prog collections”
  • Another one from Dmitry at DMME, this time on Slug Comparison “bound to perplex and enchant an ear in equal measure” with a 3 4/5 star as a result
  • And last but not least for now, a blistering 5 star review for Cranston on ViriAOR. Alicia Albertos recommends the album saying (translated) “An honest and easy listening record where a careful production stands out, with well-arranged arrangements and second voices and some lines of guitars that give the final product a touch of distinction”

All writers, thank you very much!

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Stamina Live album teaser

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Pre-order Hypocrite by Phil Vincent available now!

“Hypocrite” marks the 21st solo album by melodic rock multi-instrumentalist Phil Vincent. Totally combining modern production with classic heavy rock alongside melodic song writing in the vein of Winger, Dokken, and the Beatles, “Hypocrite” brings the listener back without losing touch with the present. Bolstered by lead guitarists Vince O’Regan and Peter Cox, this release should firmly cement Vincent’s place in melodic rock history as a songwriter not afraid to take chances but never losing touch with his deep rooted influences.

The album officially releases on Feb. 27, but you can order the CD now. Here, or at Bandcamp. The iTunes pre order is available soon. And check first track Waste Of Time below:

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Souls Of Deaf are Rushed To The Bone

aaannnndddd: here the second single from Souls Of Deaf! Uncompromising on musicality and power, and showing the band in their natural environment, the stage. Here is Rushed To The Bone!

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reviews roundup 2019-01

Slug Comparison - When You Were Living Here

Cranston II Sunrise Auranaut - InserterThe Essential Claudio DelgiftD'Ercole - Made To BurnAt the moment many reviews are coming in. And we also see more and more radio shows including our releases. Thank you all for that.

Here some quotes and links to the reviews:

  • Glory Daze Music gave Cranston an 8.5 and admit quite liking the effort
  • German site Musik Reviews gave Sunrise Auranaut 10/15 and think they have a full Eastern flair and a clear space sound
  • Heavy Paradise were among the first to review Slug Comparison, crediting the album with a 8/10 saying: ” I have to say that is a quite interesting ride all the way through Doug Harrison‘s music world. It includes some excellent melodies, solid arrangements, deep and with meaning lyrics and very good performances”
  • Fireworks writer Paul Woodward discussed D’Ercole‘s fifth album Made To Burn and calls it “another quality release involving Vincent and it’s one I highly recommend
  • Next we have Progressive Rock Fanatics writer Stephen Conrad. His first review featured involves Claudio Delgift and his compilation The Essential. Stephen says “Claudio is a prolific musician, and these tracks serve as a good introduction into the breadth and quality of his work so far.”
  • The second Conrad review is about Slug Comparison. In one word he calls it “Superb”!
  • In Canada’s The Georgia Straight, Slug Comparison is named Album Of The Week by writer Mike Usinger!
  • Get Ready To Rock writer Jason Ritchie says “With Cranston both Phil Vincent and Paul Sabu have made musical chemistry and I am already looking forward to hearing what these two come up with next.” 4/5 stars
  • and last but certainly not least is a thrilling review for Slug Comparison by The Ringmaster. Pete says “When You Were Living Here is simply intimate splendour with melodic nobility sure to be deserving of every ounce of attention and acclaim it will inevitably garner.”
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Welcome to Stamina!

stamina live*** BREAKING NEWS ***

Rock Company are very happy to welcome Italian melodic power / progressive metal band STAMINA to the family!
We will work with them to release their LIVE CD + DVD (!) Live In The City Of Power in the coming months.
This is an exciting new chapter for us all, and we are looking forward to present it to you!

Stay tuned for details, thanks for your support!

Cheers Peter

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Slug Comparison know Exactly What To Do

Slug Comparison is the solo project of Fen vocalist/guitarist Doug Harrison. Known for blending darkness and light, acoustic and electric, Harrison first deepened his exploration of these elements with a 2014 solo album that felt like a Part II to Fen’s acclaimed album Trails Out Of Gloom.
In 2017, Harrison started recording and releasing EP’s. After four of them—IIa, b, c and d—Rock Company got in touch and convinced him to bundle these EP’s, add a few extra tracks and release them as the successor to his solo debut.

So here is Slug Comparison’s second album: When You Were Living Here. The title track and “beings far away” are dedicated to the memory of Eric Rose—Harrison’s former roommate, friend, and creative accomplice. To whet your appetite here the opening track Exactly What To Do.
Album releases January 16, 2019 and pre order starts on January 1!

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End Of Year SALE

rock company end of year sale#EndOfYearSale
 
It finally happened: we have gone bonkers, mad as a hatter! We are cleaning out the closet, we need to make room for new additions, we are slashing the prices, deals deals deals, we are cutting up the prices, it’s our biggest sale ever, grab them while they’re hot, incredible deals, a one in a lifetime opportunity, you do not want to miss this, mega sale, big discounts, it’s sale time, super sale, black Friday deals (and it isn’t even Friday yet), gone is gone.
 
Yes it is the GRANDE End Of Year SALE at Rock Company. For a limited time we have lowered pricing on almost ALL of our catalogue. Including distribution titles!
Help those poor musicians get through the winter and stock up!
 
Visit https://rockcompany.nl/shop/ to start exploring. International orders over 50€ ship for free (NL orders 40€)!
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More Reviews

fred mika - withdrawal symptomsCranston IIsouls of deaf - fortune favors the bold

sky empire - the dark tower

D'Ercole - Made To BurnOk, halfway through the month it is time to point you to some more reviews! Let’s first start with Mr. H. from Zeitgeist / The Rocker, writing about Fred Mika. Alas no direct link to the review (it was posted November 23) so here his words:

FRED MIKA
Withdrawal Symptons
Rock Company

It’s the one fans are all waiting for. You know, The announcement that the drummer is doing a solo album.

So fans of Brazilian band Sunroad must have been besides themselves with joy when this appeared. Turns out said band have punted out half a dozen albums over the last twenty years or so. Nope, me neither. But it explains how Mr Mika has cajoled a host of Brazilian rock singers to appear here. See it’s one of those where a different singer is on each tune. Mind you, it’s as much an Andre Adonis record as he co-writes, plays guitars, bass and keyboards and does some singing as well. And he’s in Sunroad. Which just confuses me.

Never having heard Sunroad I don’t know how much this differs from their records but I’m hazarding a guess that this collection of old school, melodic hard rock won’t be a million miles away. And there are a few good tunes along for the ride. The best two are right in the middle when the class of Carl Dixon and Michael Voss help lift the songs on ‘Wired In’ and ‘Artwork Nightmare’ respectively.

There are nods to classic Deep Purple in a few places when the keyboards are a wee bit more prominent but there just aren’t enough to push the record from good to great. There are some jazzy and instrumental interludes which don’t help the flow so even though I quite enjoyed it but I won’t be rushing back.

Thank you mr. H.!

****

Another one I cannot point you to is for the latest Cranston album. And it is getting quite the praise:

To be released tomorrow, the simply titled “II” is indeed the second album from CRANSTON, the band formed three years go by vocalist / multi-instrumentalist Phil Vincent, his former band mate in D’Ercole drummer B.F. D’Ercole, and the legendary Paul Sabu on guitar.
What isn’t ‘simply’ for sure is the material on offer here; a strong bunch of classic melodic hard rockers full of bounce and displaying the best Sabu’s guitar work / songwriting in years.

While CranstoN first album was a good one, this second effort blow it out of the water on all aspects: all songs are good, arrangements & production better, and Sabu’s guitar playing is on fire.
Paul Sabu’s last solo album from some years ado resulted ‘cold’ in my humble opinion, then on CranstoN’s self-titled debut his work was fine however with not much room to shine, but here the talented guitarist seems to have re-captured his essence delivering some truly awesome riffs and solos to boot.

CranstoN “II” has the ‘good songs’ you need to success – well written and catchy tunes – Vincent has proven his talents and skills over the years, but what really takes this CD to another level is Sabu’s work.
His sweet riffs on the melodic rock tunes”Always on the Run”, “What’s it Gonna Take” or the AORish “Wrong Side of Town” bringing to mind Paul’s early albums.

Nicely, “II” is not circumscribed to only one genre, and they suddenly drop a poppy melodious song worthy of massive attention in the form of “Wish I Had More Time” (with Sabu performing cool acoustics as well). Here, as happens on some songs on the CD, Vincent sings with a vocal tone reminiscent of Night Ranger’s Keally Keagy which I like a lot and fits the material.

Then, the band change course to insight the hard rock intensity of the groovy “Throwin’ Down”, the Night Ranger circa mid-Nineties “Tables Turning”, and the pretty killer closing number “Dead & Gone”, a punchy cut again with a solid guitar work.

As said previously, while the first CranstoN album was good, I resulted pleasantly surprised with “II”, a very good melodic hard rock album with an early ’90s feeling.
I wasn’t expecting this Sabu return to form but the man delivers some of his magic again, add to that better songs and a more polished production, and we have here a very solid new album from CranstoN.
Highly Recommended

01. Always on the Run
02. What’s It Gonna Take
03. Wrong Side of Town
04. Soul Crusher
05. Tables Turning
06. Wish I Had More Time
07. One Track Mind
08. Throwin’ Down
09. Sad Truth
10. Take Me
11. Dead & Gone

Phil Vincent – vocals, bass, keyboards
Paul Sabu – guitar, vocals, keyboards
B.F. D’Ercole – drums

*****

Next are Souls Of Deaf. Writer Steven Reid from Sea Of Tranquility gives it 3 stars. Considering they focus on prog and this is a bit more of a metal record, not bad. He does not call it a perfectly decent record for nothing! Thanks Steven.

****

Your Music Blog tell you why (providing you love prog metal) you should buy The Dark Tower from Sky Empire. And some time before the blog wrote about D’Ercole’s Made to Burn.

****

And closing for the moment is Dmitry Epstein from DMME. He always weaves magic words and finds himself pretty impressed with D’Ercole’s latest offering Made To Burn and hands it a 4/13 out of 5 stars! Thank you Dmitry!