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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in symphony of shadows' LiveJournal:

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Monday, May 11th, 2009
4:12 pm
Do you know MindFlow?
Join letyourmindflow

Produced by Ben Grosse

Join letyourmindflow
Tuesday, December 2nd, 2008
4:28 am
The Ultimate In Math Rock
So, I originally posted this in my journal so this is a cut n paste. I thought prog fans might be interested in this though

Anyone who has ever played music with me, and played along to songs I've personally written, knows that rhythmically I don't like to be too conventional. Every once in awhile I like to go total math rock. I like to do things like write a simple 4/4 song, but have a bridge in it that's subtle but not 4/4. So people feel the familiar groove at first, but then wonder why their brains are tweaking all of a sudden. Listen to the Civita song Unsure for an example. It goes from 4/4 to a 6/4 bridge. Only the bridge has quick little 2/4 hitches that switch the beat from the kick drum to the snare and back. Plus it's got distorted little bits that jump back into 4/4 for a second before going back to the 6/4 count. All of that was intentional. I tried to do all of that but to do it really steady and smooth. So you don't really notice the changes, but you just kind of feel them. Like I said, math rock. In our song A Clown And A Boy, I go from 4/4 to 3/4 to 4/4. But there is purposely no standard verse, chorus, verse structure. The idea was to have a linear song that goes step by step from point A to B to C to D. It's not good to always be predictable. Even though it can drive my drummer and bass player mad sometimes. In fact, on unsure I recorded the guitar and bass both because it took a while for our bass player to rap his head around it. Even though it sounds super easy if you're not trying to learn it.

I must admit though, Tool has me beat. Especially on their song Lateralus. They actually based the whole song on various aspects of the Fibonacci sequence. If you're not familiar and haven't read/seen The Davinci Code, I'll explain. The Fibonacci sequence is when you get the next number in the sequence by adding the previous two digits. Like this.

0+1=1, 1+1=2, 2+1=3, 3+2=5, 5+3=8, 8+5=13 etc etc... or, to be easier to read

So Tool based their crazy time signatures for Lateralus on that. The main riff switches from 9/8 to 8/8 to 7/8. This is the 16th step of the Fibonacci sequence. And they didn't stop there. The cadence of the vocals follows the sequence starting at one and goes up and back. Plus the lyrics are all about the sequence and expanding the mind, even though they never mention it point blank. Maynard's a genius! The lyrics speak of spiraling out into places unknown. Another way to illustrate the Fibonacci sequence is with an ever expanding spiral based on the increasing area of a triangle based on the sequence. Like this:

Most of that stuff about the Fibonacci sequence I just happen to know because I'm a big math nerd. In fact, when ever it's 11:23 on a clock in our house, Mel(instantkarmma) and I try to be the first to yell out "It's One One Two Three!!!!" Yeah, we're freaks. But here's a video showing all the stuff in Lateralus dealing with the Fibonacci sequence. It's way cooler when you can see it all happening!

Lateralus Explained

Current Mood: impressed
Friday, October 31st, 2008
1:02 pm
Mike Baker of Shadow Gallery died
He was such an awesome vocalist :(

Via their website:

It is with deep sadness and regret that we announce the passing of Shadow Gallery vocalist, Michael A. Baker. Mike suffered a heart attack, Wednesday afternoon, October 29th, 2008. He was 45 years old. Mike was a founding member of Shadow Gallery and for the past 16 years, helped shape the sound of the band with his magical voice. Additionally, he made many appearances on rock records around the world. Those who knew him best were moved by his gentle spirit, sincere kindness, fun nature and passion for both music and sports. He was a warrior in the studio, a true professional. Mike was our friend, our singer and our brother. We loved him and will miss him enormously, but he will always be remembered in our hearts and through his music.

x-posted to the arjenmusic community as well.

Current Mood: sad
Monday, October 27th, 2008
5:55 pm
Saturday, October 25th, 2008
3:48 am
Yo long time no Post
So, here's my band Dread Effect. We just got done playing a show here in Seattle.

Input is appreciated, honest, brutal input.

If we are of the lame tell us why you think so.

I want to call us Metal, but I don't know if we qualify, yet we are a bit edgier than "Hard Rock"

You decide.

Give us some love (or hate, or indifference) at www.dreadeffect.com.

Looking forward to it.

Oh yeah here's the video:

Dread Effect "Wreck" Live at the King Cat from Nexus Luthor on Vimeo.
Thursday, May 22nd, 2008
8:23 am
My radio station
Hey everyone -

If you are interested in hearing some great rock music, please check out my radio station. No I don't get a commission on promoting this. This is purely my own personal project, and I just want to increase my listenership. Trust me... this is great music!

(The official internet radio station of The Open
Experience running 24/7 -- post-modern progressive rock music, contemporary adult album-oriented rock music, some 80's rock, some classic rock, and other various forms of rock)

Wednesday, March 5th, 2008
2:26 pm
Hey everyone - just pimpin' my kick-ass radio station out again. I try not to do it too often, but I do like to remind people of it every once in awhile and keep people informed. This really is a great station. So if you're looking for some good rock music to listen to at work or what not, check it out. I'd love to have more listeners enjoying the tunes with me. No profit motive here. It's just a hobby of mine, but I think it's turning out to be quite an impressive internet radio station.

(The official internet radio station of The Open Experience's running 24/7 -- post-modern progressive rock music, contemporary adult album-oriented rock music, some 80's rock, some classic rock, and other various forms of rock)

Here are some of the groups played on this station:

Peter Gabriel, Marillion, Riverside, Spock's Beard, Porcupine Tree, The Flower Kings, Fleetwood Mac, Illustrated Band/Gideon's Press, Genesis, Yes, Rush, Jadis, Paula Cole, The Cardigans, Simple Minds, Bruce Hornsby, Tears For Fears, Thomas Dolby, Duran Duran, King Crimson, The Cure, David Bowie, 10,000 Maniacs, Copeland, Transatlantic, The Police, Kevin Gilbert, Shawn Colvin, Radiohead, Coldplay, Sarah McLachlan, Cyndi Lauper, Berlin, Stone Temple Pilots, Snow Patrol, Adrian Belew, Pretenders, Mae, INXS, Sky Cries Mary, Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen and so much more!
Monday, January 14th, 2008
11:12 am
New Prog Band!!!
I've discovered what I think is a really great new prog band! My own personal band Civita had a gig with them last night at The Central in Seattle. We were all blown away. They're a three piece called Half Zaftig. Check out some of their music at http://www.myspace.com/halfzaftig and I don't think you'll be disappointed. My favorite part of the night was when they launched into the "Darth Vader's Theme" music out of nowhere. Brilliant! I hate doing the whole "they sound like this band mixed with this other band with a dash of that band" thing, I like to let the music speak for itself. But here's a cut n paste of their own description:

Half Zaftig sounds exactly like Led Zeppelin spilling a beer on Living Colour at a party that King's X threw for Trent Reznor and The Beatles at Frank Zappa's house. Yeah, just like that!

And here's a little "behind the scenes" video they've put together that displays their sense of humor while still showing that they're great musicians. All the music in the video is theirs. Check them out and tell me what you think of them!

Current Mood: impressed
9:23 am
New member here
Hey Everyone -

Well first of all, I'm looking for new friends, and since my main hobby/obsession is music, this seemed like a great community to post in (this was cross-posted). I'm 37 and live near Seattle. I listen to all kinds of rock music (especially progressive), as well as some jazz. My influences are listed below. I'm also a composer/musician/arist, and I'm currently working on an album to hopefully be released in the next couple of years. I love making new friends, particularly if I can find some groovy people who share the same music interests as me and love to talk about music. But I also tend to ramble on with all kinds of meaningless dribble in my journal.

Now for some shameless promoting, so please indulge me for pimping myself out a bit: I've got a great internet radio station that plays some of the best music on Earth! Seriously - you guys should check it out. You need a live365.com membership to listen, but it's free to sign up and listen (and it's quick and easy to do). Check it out! Just click on the link below. And don't forget to bookmark/preset my station page once you sign up:

(The official internet radio station of The Open
Experience's running 24/7 -- post-modern progressive rock music and contemporary adult album-oriented rock music)

Here are some of the artists played on this station: Peter Gabriel, Marillion, Spock's Beard, Porcupine Tree, The Flower Kings, Fleetwood Mac, Stevie Nicks, Genesis, Yes, Rush, Jadis, Paula Cole, The Cardigans, Simple Minds, Bruce Hornsby, Tears For Fears, Thomas Dolby, Duran Duran, King Crimson, Billy Joel, The Cure, David Bowie, 10,000 Maniacs, Copeland, Transatlantic, The Police, Kevin Gilbert, Shawn Colvin, Radiohead, Coldplay, Sarah McLachlan, Cyndi Lauper, Berlin, Stone Temple Pilots, Snow Patrol, Pat Benatar, The Beatles, Adrian Belew, IQ, Pretenders, Mae, Steely Dan, Death Cab for Cutie, Stereophonics, Bruce Springsteen and so much more!

Look forward to hearing from some of you.


Current Mood: content
Tuesday, September 25th, 2007
3:41 pm
Fear this!
Okay, all you progheads out there, it's time to get ready for Porcupine Tree's US Tour! Who else is going?

Oh, and I'm sure you all have it already, but if you don't, go check out Porcupine Tree's new album! RIGHT NOW!

Saturday, September 22nd, 2007
11:41 pm
Rapid Eye Movement
The new LP from Polish Prog-metal musicians Riverside is out...more or less. This third full length release, titled Rapid Eye Movement, is the final chapter in the band's series that has been the focus of their creative efforts since their debut.

As expected this album is a well constructed, well thought-out and well played masterpiece of their particular brand of Progressive Rock/Metal. As usual the elements of Pink Floyd, Dream Theater, Opeth and others can be heard throughout, but this time around Riverside has definitely brought their own sound.

So far I haven't found any standout tracks, the entire album is just wonderfully done. Panic Room is the first single, but thats only cause its the most accessible. Give it a listen if you already dig them...and if not, try it anyways.


Current Mood: tired
Sunday, August 5th, 2007
10:15 pm
La Villa Strangiato
Ok, these have got to be my two favorite versions of "La Villa Strangiato" ever! I've really love RUSH. Have for years. How they're not in the Rock hall of fame is beyond me. I'd love to have a career like theirs. Extremely respected, loved by millions and all on their own terms. From the video below it's obvious they get it. Art is supposed to be great, inspiring, but most of all FUN! I love that RUSH are known for being these total virtuoso's with abilities beyond us mere mortal...which is true...but they have fun! They've been around since 1968 and I've been a fan since about 1977, and they've always been hilarious! Even though these guys are incredible at what they do, it's nice to see that they know how to have a good time and that when they're on stage, it's their stage. They're at home up there. I want to be like that. Check these out! Oh, and Alex Lifeson is a FREAK!

Current Mood: amused
Friday, July 20th, 2007
11:25 am
Nightwish and Dark passion Play
So a few promo tracks from Nightwish's new album Dark Passion Play have made it on teh interweb.  I say Promo because so far each of the tracks I have found are low quality (128kb/sec) and have some interruptions, stating the name of the band, the new album and the name of the track.

The two I have really given attention to are Amaranth and Poet and the Pendulum.

Amaranth will probably sum up the entire Nightwish experience with new singer Anette Olzon.  The song starts off with Anette Olzon feeling very, generic.  She sings well and her voice matches with the music, mostly, but its pretty obvious this song was written way before they had anyone lined up for singing it.  By the end of the song, however, I feel entirely used to Anette's brand of vocals and come to welcome them.  Overall from this song I get a "Victoria's Secret" (from Sonata Arctica) vibe...not bad at all.  A few more listens and this song is infectious.  I love it and am glad that Toumas' writing is only getting better...

...which brings me to Poet and the Pendulum, the new 14 minute epic  I need to listen to this one a few more times, but so far I am impressed thoroughly.  The song has the passion and the ove the top thematics of the other two epics that Toumas has written...but it seems to lack the overall undefinable power that was with Ghost Love Score (maybe I am biased...its my favorite Nightwish song to date).  The middle of the song has an unrelenting orchestra section, complete with some cello and violin solo sections.  Again, Anette's voice feels more or less pasted on to this song, but works nicely.  The ending (last 3 minutes) to the song is kind of dull...but its pretty.

Anyways....I really am looking forward to the rest of this album and cant wait till its available over here in the US.  I think Anette has nowhere but up to go from here with Nightwish.  I am sure that by their second attempt with her they'll have her style and vocals dialed down so well that it will be godlike.  For Dark Passion Play I'm gonna have to say it'll probably only be awesome, amazing or stunning...

Current Mood: bouncy
Tuesday, May 29th, 2007
2:45 pm
On Nightwish, Eva and the new Singer
I guess its just one question...Do ya'll like her so far?  To me she sounds like a mix of Marcela Bovio (Stream of Passion, Ayreon, Elfonia) and the chick from Within Temptation.  The song itself is pretty standard fare Nightwish/Toumas, which is of course excellent.  The direction they've taken since Century Child is awesome and all.

Anyways...initial thoughts on the new singer?
Friday, May 11th, 2007
11:55 pm
Need some new bands
I need some new bands along the lines of Porcupine Tree, Pink Floyd, King Crimson, Riverside, Isis, Nuerosis, God Speed You Black Emperor, Fantomas, Melvins.

Avant Garde, Experimental, etc...

Current Mood: chipper
Wednesday, April 18th, 2007
6:56 pm
Unia > Reckoning Night
Getting done with my first listen-through of Sonata Arctica's newest album, Unia, and I can easily say its better than Reckoning Night.

The songs are much more progressive and less over the top-melodic.  There is still the melodic element so don't worry.  So far the only thing lacking is a definitive kick ass song.  It would be hard to top Don't Say a Word...and through my first listen I can't really narrow it down to anything that is balls to the walls awesome, but I think that "Fly With the Black Swan" is the coolest so far.

More to come later.

Current Mood: awake
Friday, December 8th, 2006
8:32 pm
Maniacal Renderings and Burden of Truth
Got both these CDs today. Given them both two listens today and I'm ready to give you my initial impressions.

Maniacal Renderings starts of awesome and ends awesome with a little bit of awesome in the middle. Pretty much the entire album drips of just how amazing of a writer Jon Oliva is. The band is in top form this album and the production is definately a step higher than Tage Mahal. Almost all the tracks are incredible so its hard to pick out a single stand out track, but Through the Eyes of the King (strangely reminiscent of In The Hall of the Mountain King) and Maniacal Renderings are probably the best the cd has to offer. Stylistically half the album feels like Mountain King to Streets era Savatage and the other half seems more like Tage Mahal (post Poets & Madmen style). Overall very much a high reccomendation.


Burden of Truth does two things at once to me. It reinforces my opinion that Zak Stevens is one of the most talented straight-metal singers in the game right now. He has such great control, range and dynamics. And his tone is great, in this album more than any other he has ever done. At the same time, I am dissapointed in his writing abilities for himself. When Jon Oliva and O'Neil wrote for him, he did so much more. Not just range wise, but rythmically too. Wake of Magellan and Watching In Silence had some of the most complex vocal arrangements. But Burden of truth just reminds me so much of Middle of Nowhere. There just isnt any pizzazz here. A shame too, cause Zak is capeable of so much more than Circle II Circle has been putting up. At least he is getting to do his own creative expression how he likes it. There is pleanty of overdubbing and canonized singing here too, so you wont miss out there. Your Reality and Evermore are standout tracks, burden of Truth is probably the best track on the album. Hard to reccomend to anyone not already a Zak Stevens fan, but good enough that I'm glad I got it.


I'll probably do full on reviews after I'm done with finals. i want to dissect Burden of Truth to get at the story.

Current Mood: tired
Saturday, December 2nd, 2006
8:45 am
New artist needs your help!
Hi everyone -

I'm trying to generate interest in my new musical project. I'm releasing an album in March with sort of a rock/progressive rock tint to it, and I would love it if you guys checked out what I'm doing. The first 100 people who sign up on my email list will receive a complimentary copy of the CD when it's released. You can check out the music and sign up on the mailing list at http://www.theopenexperience.com

Alternatively, you can check out my MySpace site at http://www.myspace.com/theopenexperience

Thanks in advance for your support...


Current Mood: artistic
12:07 am
Some new listening reccomendations
Every once and a while I can drop some good reccomendations that I am sure a few of you haven't heard.
These are the latest...

1 - Riverside's "Second Life Syndrome" Riverside has really taken a hold of me. They're labeled as Prog Metal, and seeing how everything falls there now its no doubt. In truth they are much less flashy than proggers tend to be and focus more on how their subtle instrumentation and vocal tones can paint a total picture that lyrics alone fails to capture. Second Life Syndrome is the second of their albums and the more mature of the two. Their writing reminds me of post Waters Pink Floyd and ,id 90's Fates Warning.

2 - Deep Purple's "In Concert With London Symphony Orchestra" Deep Purple are probably the undisputed champions of live progressive rock. They more or less helped to invent the genre, and of all the early prog bands, the most active and recorded live group. Among their amazing recorded concerts, of which there a bajillion, one really stands out, the 1969 live with LSO. This show comes from a time before many of their hit songs were written, so very few of the Purple standards are performed, but the real draw here is the Concerto for group and Orchestra. John Lord, keyboardist and primary writer for Purple, wrote a 45 or so minute concerto piece that is very reminiscent of Stravinsky and Rachmaninoff. Very powerful. The two other pieces of note in the concert are "Take it Off the Top" and "Wring that Neck". Also of note...this as the first concert Ian Gillian (the legendary Deep Purple vocalist) sang in for Deep Purple.

3 - "Classical Jazz Quartet Plays Rachmanininow" - Impressive jazz quartet arrangement of some of Rachmaninoff's pieces, including melodies snatched from the 2nd and 3rd Piano Concertos. A must hear for any Rachmaninoff fans.

4 - Mozart's Missa [solemnis] in C min (KV139-47a) - Deep, moving and dark Mass proper by one of the god's of music. His Requiem Mass gets all the glory, but this Proper is something not to be missed.

So, there you go. Covered quite a few points of interest there, hope you take the time to check any of them out.

Current Mood: tired
Tuesday, October 10th, 2006
8:19 pm
I'm probably not the only one, but has anyone ever checked out progarchives.com or is a member? ive known about the site for a good year and a half and been a member since this past november. it's an excellent site for finding out pretty much any info on any prog band out there.

btw, anyone here consider Phish a prog band? IMO i do.
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