Blog Archives

Mammal’s Merry Memories: Porcupine Tree – Stars Die (1995)


Porcupine Tree truly sprang to prominence with their 2002 album, In Absentia. It was their seventh album and marked the start of their international stature as a heavy prog rock band. Up to that time, Porky Tree had been a space rock band.

Their third album, The Sky Moves Sideways (1995), is my favourite from their early period. This was the album that contributed the most to their unofficial title of “The Pink Floyd of the Nineties”. It didn’t win Porky Tree many fans in the metal community — space rock is usually too soft and proggy for that.

In 1995 there were only three permanent members of the band — the colossally talented Steven Wilson doing vocals and guitars, Richard Barbieri on keyboards and Colin Edward on bass. Drummer Chris Maitland had toured with the band and contributed to studio recordings, including three tracks on The Sky Moves Sideways. He became a regular member in 1996.

 

Metal Meets Yoga


cropped-mudra-sans-faceIn the last couple of months I picked up this thing called yoga.  You might have heard of it.  That thing where you do strength and flexibility poses and it’s supposed to make you strong, limber, and cleansed in the mind and body.  Ask a yogi and they will probably give you a more philosophical answer to what yoga does for a body.  In layman’s terms, all I can tell you is that I feel freakin’ good when it’s over.  I am getting more flexible and stress-free and that’s kind of important at my ripe old age of 40.  I attribute my progress specifically to my twice-weekly sessions.  See, only twice a week and I have come so far.  Who says they don’t have time for this?  Anyway.  When it’s over, I feel like all I need is a shower and a bed – I feel so relaxed.  Something must be working and I found that I am starting to “need” these yoga sessions twice a week.  It’s kind of addicting. Read the rest of this entry

Mammal’s Top 25 In-Betweener Albums: #5 – #1


Thus concludeth my selection of albums that couldeth be either prog rock or prog metal, as the mantis said unto the moth before eatething it. Muncheth, muncheth, went the mantis. “Ow! Verily, friggin’ oweth!” wailed the moth.

This is the first time I’ve started a music post with a biology lesson.

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Album Review: Caligula’s Horse – The Tide, The Thief & River’s End


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Caligula’s Horse has crafted songs that are so alive and so powerful that I get tears in my eyes. Their music makes me do more than just listen, I’m feeling it, I’m living it.  

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Genre: Progressive rock/metal with a unique, modern and intelligent sound

Recommended for fans of: Opeth, Pain of Salvation, Porcupine Tree, Karnivool, Dream Theater, TesseracT, concept albums, interesting music

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Song Of The Week: Caligula’s Horse – Dark Hair Down


If you have the slightest interest in progressive rock/metal, especially the kind with a good rhythm section and great guitar work, and some of your favourite bands happen to be named Opeth, Tool, Karnivool, Porcupine Tree  or Pain of Salvation, you need to check out the Australian band Caligula’s Horse. Don’t worry, they are not copying aforementioned bands, they do have a very nice style of their own and perfectly blends modern metal with a more classic proggy sound and outstanding vocals.

I first saw their name on Facebook a couple of weeks ago, as a recommendation by the band Ne Obliviscaris. Because they were mentioned by Ne Obliviscaris (another awesome band) and in the same sentence as “great gigs” and “Twelve Foot Ninja” (my latest musical addiction), I decided to investigate it further. After a couple of days and their new album ‘The Tide, The Thief and River’s End’ on repeat, I’m sold. Completely. In love. Head over heels…

Dark Hair Down‘ provides a taste of it, but the album has so much more than this to offer:

 

Full Album Stream:

Mik’s Top 100 Favourite Albums of All Time #61-65


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A while ago, at the same time as Matt and Reggie, I posted my Top 100 All Time Favourite (Metal) Albums over at the forum The History of Metal on FB. It took a good amount of time and effort to put it together, but it was so much fun! My taste in metal is always changing, so the list will not always look the same. In fact, it’s already a bit different than it was when I first put it together and posted it on the forum seven months ago.

I tried to limit myself to three albums per band to make the list a little more diverse and interesting. I don’t really consider the ‘test of time’-factor when selecting what albums that will go on my list, instead I measure it by how strongly the album has affected me emotionally and how much/often it has helped me through both good and bad phases in my life. That’s why you can find quite a few newer releases among my favourites too. 

#65 Bathory – Hammerheart

”Northern wind, take my song up high
to the Hall of Glory in the sky
So its gates shall greet me open wide
when my time has come to die…”

R.I.P

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Matt’s Top 100 Favorite Albums of All Time: #55-#51


Over on my favorite forum for rambling about metal, The History of Metal (it’s an open Facebook forum, so anyone, meaning you, can join and flap your jaw about metal with a wide variety of metalheads from all over the world), the admin made a challenge to all the members to create their top 100 albums of all time. Loving making lists I’m all on this. Between the ~1500 albums I have there is a lot to filter through and this has turned into quite a daunting, yet fun, challenge. This list will represent where I am with my favorite albums right now, if I were to do this last year or next year, while being similar, I’m sure there would be lots of differences. My only self-imposed limitation on this is I’m confining each band 3 albums in the list to avoid entire, very large, discographies over saturating it. Every 5 days or so I’ll make a post with the next 5 entries into the list. Fellow bloggers, I extend this challenge to you (and be sure to let me know where and when you’ll be posting it, I’d love to read it), and for readers without a blog join up with THOM and post yours there! Enjoy!!! Peace Love and Metal!!!

#55 La Sexorcisto: Devil Music Vol. 1 by White Zombie

Thanks to one of my perennial favorite T.V. shows, Beavis and Butthead, I got my first taste of White Zombie with the song “Welcome to Planet Mother Fucker”. What more could a teen ask for, a Beavis and Butthead approved metal band with a sick groove and a love for the same cheesy horror and sci-fi movies I was so into at the time (and still am ;) ). This record stood the test of time still rocking hard and feeling fresh after 20 years (damn, has it been that long, I feel old). To this day I have yet to hear a newer band reciprocate White Zombie’s recognizable brand of metal, which makes this record something even more unique.
I love this video for “Thunder Kiss ’65″, can anything get any more ’90′s?

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This Storm is Quite Corrosive


With the amount of work that Steven Wilson (of Porcupine Tree) and Mikael Åkerfeldt (of Opeth) do on each others albums, many fans have said that they should just get together and make their own band.  Well, the two have done just that and formed the band Storm Corrosion.

Scheduled to be released by Roadrunner Records in April 2012 very little is known as both members have been quite tight-lipped on the details of the project.  If Steven Wilson’s latest solo album Grace for Drowning and Opeth‘s recent album Heritage are any indication of the direction both artists are heading in, I expect to hear a very unique and deep prog-rock/metal album overflowing with great songwriting and gushing with talent.  According to Storm Corrosion‘s Facebook page “Apart from Mikael and Steven, the album includes guest appearances by Gavin Harrison on drums/percussion, Ben Castle on woodwinds, and Dave Stewart on string arrangements.”

What do all you wonderful readers think about this project?  Are you hyped up as much as I am for this album?  Could you care less?  What are your expectations?  Let us know!  Peace Love and Metal!!!!

Photo’s from the Storm Corrosion Facebook page. Photo by Naki Kouyioumtzis. Copyright, all rights reserved 2012.

You’re Being Very Unmetallike Dude


Like most people, when I listen to music I tend to stick to my preferred genre, and like most others I also like to take steps outside of my preferred genre from time to time to see what else is going on.  Often times reveling in the glorious world of metal can tend to become a bit overbearing and need a breather.  Other times I hear a certain non-metal element in my metal music that catches my ear and the interest gets me to go out exploring and often times I find some great music.  Here are some of my favorite artists outside of the realm of metal.  Some are quite popular, some not, but all are worth checking out.  Do you have some non-metal bands that you would suggest to check out?  Let me know!!  Enjoy!! Peace Love and Metal!!!

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