Ep. #326 featuring Subsignal

SubsignalAfter a week off for vacation the show returns featuring a fantastic band from Germany, Subsignal. They’ve recently released The Beacons of Somewhere Sometime, their 4th studio effort. The band continues to distance themselves from their precursor of sorts, Sieges Even, and continues down a slightly more atmospheric sound as time moves along.

We also played the brand new Jolly song Ava, from their forthcoming album Family. The band is doing a newer form of crowdfunding called Patreon, and you can check out their campaign here. We will be discussing this new format on our forthcoming Music Mixer in December. Other definite topics will include the new Steven Wilson EP, 4 1/2, and the tough choice Transatlantic will face on future tours. Check out the video for Ava below.

Then there is the many bands that made their debut on the program tonight thanks to Cruise to the Edge. If you like what you heard tonight, please visit the online homes of Airbag, Bad Dreams, Messenger, Casey McPherson, and Lifesigns.

We also played the new track from Spock’s Beard, Falling For Forever. The song comes from the new compilation, The First Twenty Years. It’s not often I tell people not to buy something, but if you’re already a Spock’s Beard fan, go ahead and skip this one. Compilations mixed with original material are the devil, and buying them only assures that we’ll see more of it.

A small Canadian trio named Rush also had a recent live released, with R40 Live.  Still on the fence about this release, which can be found here? Well watch this video and then throw your money at the screen already.

To my American listeners, have a happy Thanksgiving, and to everyone else, a fantastic week, and thank you!

Yes – Changes
Subsignal – Tempest
Nektar – Time Machine
Jolly – Ava
Rush – Hemispheres~
Rush – Cygnus X-1~
Spock’s Beard – Falling For Forever
Subsignal – Maelstrom
Subsignal – The Path
Sonus Umbra – Channel Zero
Bad Dreams – Apocolypse of the Mercy
Messenger – The Return
Casey McPherson – Lexington^
Flying Colors – Colder Months~^
Flying Colors – Peaceful Harbor
Airbag – Redemption
Subsignal – In This Blinding Light
Subsignal – A Canopy of Stars
Moon Safari – Lover’s End, Pt. 1
Lifesigns – Lighthouse
Blackfield – Thank You~^

Ep. #325 featuring Vanden Plas

Vanden PlasThis week on the program we head over to Germany for our feature, and take a look at a very long-lasting prog-metal lineup in the band Vanden Plas. Their new album is Chronicles of the Immortals: Netherworld 2, and in my humble opinion is one of those rare sequels that goes above and beyond the hype created by the original. In the year and a half since the original Netherworld it makes sense that not much in the core sound has changed, but every single song on the new album delivers a very strong punch, which is not something I would have said about the original. You can buy the new album here.

We also started off the show tonight with a track from the soon to be released Flying Colors live album, Second Flight. You can order that here.

As I mentioned during the show, there will be no live show or podcast next week, as I will be taking to the high seas on Cruise to the Edge. If the time is available post-cruise you can expect a review similar to what I did for RoSfest earlier this year, which was a very popular download. See you all in two weeks!

Flying Colors – Open Up Your Eyes~
Vanden Plas – In My Universe
Pagan’s Mind – God’s Equation~
Haken – Eternal Rain
Thank You Scientist – Suspicious Wavelength
Neal Morse – Sweet Elation
Anathema – Lost Control
Vanden Plas – Godmaker’s Temptation
Teramaze – Delusions of Grandeur
Gazpacho – Know Your Time
Nad Sylvan – The Killing of the Calm
Alberto Rigoni – Corruption
Leprous – Bilateral
Vanden Plas – Blood of Eden
Mechanical Butterfly – Sparks Within a Downpour
Trivium – Dead and Gone
Waken Eyes – Arise
Allen/Lande – Another Battle
Iron Maiden – Killers
Consider the Source – Up to, but not to Exceed… Whoa
Vanden Plas – Monster

Ep. #324: November Music Mixer

Dream TheaterSo, you’ve just gotten a new podcast, and it turns out, that unlike the one you normally listen to every week, there is no music with a rude guy cutting off your tune-buzz every fifteen minutes or so. This is because this is the first in a hopefully long series of monthly music mixer podcasts that will compliment the usual music filled endeavors.

The mixers will always involve the three main contributors of the When Prog and Power Unite team: Nick, Mason, and Joe, and hopefully will include other DJs or special guests down the line. We will talk about recent and future music news, tell stories, and hit on some interesting musical topics.

On this first mixer our main topic of discussion was Dream Theater, and their forthcoming album, The Astonishing. What we know so far is that it will be a double album, it will be a rock opera, and it will be played in its entirety on the supporting tour. As a bonus, the band is running a huge publicity campaign to get fans interested in the album, which included having fans sign up for the two main factions in advance, and then getting emails from those factions. You can choose your side and get emails from the faction of your choice here. Additionally you can go to a new part of the band’s website here to follow new developments.

Next we discussed Pain of Salvation, and the direction they’ll be taking with a new album next year. You can check them out on Facebook here. They post in regards to the new material reads as follows:

Additionally, following-up on their latest “Road Salt” releases, Pain of Salvation have now started to work on material for a next studio album effort, which will be a concept album that goes back to the band’s harder and heavier roots of the early 2000’s. Pain of Salvation’s Daniel Gildenlöw has checked in with a brief status report on the band’s current activities as follows:

“We have a few gigs on the horizon, but in all honesty, our true focus is on the next studio album right now. Ragnar and I truly enjoy writing music together, and have that sort of completing-each-other’s-sentences dynamics to our writing that I have only found in very few people over the years. We have very creative writing sessions, and we can’t wait for the fans to hear the new material! You’ll see a hungry and strong Pain of Salvation, confidently returning to a harder and heavier form, musically. Still, as always, without losing the intimacy and originality that has been the trademark of the band ever since the first album. Anyone who has witnessed on stage what today’s Pain of Salvation are capable of, will understand how much I am looking forward to show them what we can do in a studio.”

We also talked a bit about Ghost‘s recent appearance on the Late Show with Steven Colbert, playing their song Cirice. You can check out that performance below.

Finally, before concluding with some bad concert experiences, and laying down some rules for good concert etiquette, we talked a bit about the new album from Trivium, Silence in the Snow, which is available here.

As this is the first podcast of this type any feedback from our listeners would be greatly appreciated! Let us know your thoughts on the topics we discussed, or perhaps throw out some interesting topics for our sophomore attempt in December. As of now we only know Transatlantic and Steven Wilson will be in the mix, and the rest could very well be up to you!

Ep. #323 featuring Teramaze

TeramazeThis week we take a long journey on an imaginary plane to the long rumored land of Australia. This far away land only seems believable, because unlike Atlantis, there is some great music attributed to Australian bands. One of the bands making this music is Teramaze, and they just released our featured album this week, Her Halo. For those who are unaware of the band and need a reference, one comparison is constantly popping back into my mind. Dream Theater vocalist James LaBrie has done some guest work with Edin’s Curse and Redemption, and the music and vocals often sound very similar to those guest appearances. At other times the vocals stray far from LaBrie, but often the timbres of their voices walk very close paths. You can pick up the new album here, and watch their latest video below.

There were a duo of bands making their debut on the program tonight, and the first is a new band that includes Symphony X bassist Mike LePond and Steven Wilson drummer Marco Minnemann, and they are called Waken Eyes. There new album is Exodus and can be grabbed here. Our other new artist is Alberto Rigoni, who is working on a new album and could use your help in funding it here. Along with what we played on the show you can also check out his video below.

Finally, there are a couple of artists with new or forthcoming music to talk about. The first is Sonus Umbra, who we talked about a few months ago when they ran a kickstarter for the new album. Their new album will be Beyond the Panopticon, and you can follow the progress on that and see the cover art on their facebook page here. Finally there is some new stuff out from Consider the Source. You can listen to (and buy?!?) World War Trio (Parts II & III), here.

Teramaze – Ordinary Dream
Gazpacho – Alarm
Alberto Rigoni – Overloaded
Coheed and Cambria – The Audience
Nad Sylvan – To Turn the Other Side
Teramaze – To Love, a Tyrant
Waken Eyes – Aberration
Consider the Source – This Dubious Honor
IO Earth – Trance
Sonus Umbra – Alone Together Alone
Mechanical Butterfly – The Alchemist
Trivium – Blind Leading the Blind
Barracuda Triangle – Acid Rain
Teramaze – Out of Subconscious
The Flower Kings – Monsters & Men
Teramaze – For the Innocent

Ep. #322 featuring Arjen Anthony Lucassen

Arjen Anthony LucassenThis week I’m stepping away from the featured album format to honor the man I’ve always considered to be the greatest songwriter in prog, Arjen Anthony Lucassen. Arjen’s repertoire includes Ayreon, Star One, Stream of Passion, Guilt Machine, The Gentle Storm, and his solo album.  Arjen is a multi-instrumentalist and composer who I consider to be one of the great storytellers in the genre. I’m not blind to criticisms of his work, and will happily admit that, yes, his lyrics are ridiculously cheesy at times. That said, in his story based works he can paint a clear picture, and engages the listener naturally into the story, something that cannot be said about a lot of concept albums. Add to that the often ornate instruments used in his recordings, the myriad of assembled talent he’s worked with, and every bit of prog hook that I love, and you have a winning formula.

Some, like Neal Morse, might be more prolific in the amount of material, and then you have the likes of Steven Wilson who may be more serious and enigmatic, but in many ways Arjen embodies the prog spirit, and has been a beacon of light to the genre since The Final Experiment came out in 1995. So this episode is dedicated to the Dutch legend, and self-proclaimed “Social Recluse”, Arjen Anthony Lucassen. Please visit his page here.

Australian band Teramaze made their debut on the program tonight, and we will have an interview with guitarist Dean Wells available for everyone later this week. Their new album Her Halo comes out on Friday, October 30th, and you can pre-order that here. While you wait check out the lead video from the album below!

Also making their debut on the program tonight was Mechanical Butterfly. You can listen to their last album, The Irresistible Gravity in full, and purchase it here. Finally, we have some live Pagan’s Mind on the horizon! The set is called Full Circle and is available here.

Fates Warning – One
Ayreon – Dreamtime
Flaming Row – First Day
Teramaze – Her Halo
Trivium – Silence in the Sorrow
Mechanical Butterfly – Labyrinth of Doors
Star One – Sandrider
Lord – Reborn
Pagan’s Mind – New World Order
Pineapple Thief – Snowdrops
Ayreon – School
The Winery Dogs – The Lamb
Nad Sylvan – Echoes of Ekwabet
Coheed and Cambria – Peace to the Mountain
IO Earth – Redemption
Anglagard – Langtans Klocka
The Gentle Storm – Shores of India (Gentle)
Stream of Passion – Wherever You Are~
Lonely Robot – God vs. Man
Steve Rothery Band – Kendris~
Guilt Machine – Over
Arjen Anthony Lucassen – Pink Beatles in a Purple Zeppelin
Steven Wilson – The Pin Drop
Sailing to Nowhere – Fallen Angel
Redemption – Another Day Dies
Ayreon – Epilogue


I’ve seen this coming on the horizon for awhile now, but a few days ago When Prog and Power Unite hit a pretty special milestone, 10,000 downloads! When the site redesign and podcasting started in March, we didn’t have any expectations of hitting this mark in the first year. In just 8 short months the various shows, reviews, and interviews have traveled through the “series of tubes” that is the internet more times than I could have imagined.

This of course means a huge thank you is in order to everyone out there that is continuing to download the program (not forgetting of course all the others who listen live!), and to the others who make the show possible. The help from Mason and Joe with reviews and music is always very helpful, and of course we couldn’t do anything without Mark, Rayna, and everyone else at ProgRock.com.

So thank you again, and I hope you stay with us to 20,000!

Posted on 2015-10-24, 12:50 am By
No comments yet Categories: News Tags:
Ep. #321 featuring Coheed & Cambria

Coheed and CambriaPerhaps Coheed & Cambria‘s best ties to the prog world come from their thematic set up as a band. From the start, until very recently, every bit of music the band has released has fallen within the same story. That changes with the new album, The Color Before the Sun. The band has finally separated from The Amory Wars saga, whose stories and associated comic books are as much of the band as their music. The band’s previous two efforts were both prequels, and so it could easily be argued that this attempt to get away was long overdue. Musically the album is no huge departure from their core sound, but the freedom granted by this album led to an album that seemed as loose as their first effort, and if nothing else had to be quite refreshing for the band. You can pick up the album here.

In the news front, I mentioned that Ghost will be appearing on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert on October 30th, and recommend you check their performance out! Vanden Plas has released a trailer for their forthcoming album, and you can view that  below.

Another video that requires your attention is Rush‘s latest offering from the upcoming R40 live set, Jacob’s Ladder.

We also had a tons of bands and new albums making their debut on the program on this episode. One was Electro Shock Therapy from Barracuda Triangle, and you can grab that album here. Next is New World, the new offering from IO Earth, found here. Gazpacho has one coming out soon called Molok, here. Next we have a new solo album from Nad Sylvan, Courting the Window, found here. On a heavier note we have To the Unknown from Sailing to Nowhere, which can be purchased here, and Trivium with Silence in the Snow here. And finally, we have new stuff from Subsignal, who are releasing The Beacons of Somewhere Sometime, which can be bought here. You can also view a new video below.

Labyrinth – Crossroads
Coheed and Cambria – Island
Ghost – If You Have Ghosts^
James LaBrie – Back on the Ground
Barracuda Triangle – Black Days
IO Earth – New World Suite
Gazpacho – The Master’s Voice
Subsignal – A Myth Written on Water
Coheed and Cambria – Ghost
Coheed and Cambria – Atlas
Sailing to Nowhere – No Dreams in My Night
Serenity – To Stone She Turned
Circle II Circle – It’s All Over
Trivium – The Ghost That’s Haunting You
Lo-Fi Resistance – Program
Spock’s Beard – The Slow Crash Landing Man
Karmakanic – There’s Nothing Wrong With the World Today
Rush – Jacob’s Ladder~
Nad Sylvan – Courting the Widow
Sylvan – Strange Emotion
Arcane – Unturning
Thrice – Promises
Coheed and Cambria – Colors
Dave Kerzner – Under Control
The Sixxis – Weeping Willow Tree
Thought Chamber – Balance of One
Rainbow – Street of Dreams
Erik Norlander – The Fire of Change
Muse – Stockholm Syndrome
Coheed and Cambria – Young Love


Ep. #320 featuring The Winery Dogs

The Winery DogsThis week we are taking a deep look into an album that may not be prog or power, but has members rooted in both. The Winery Dogs consist of Mike Portnoy, Billy Sheehan, and Richie Kotzen, and it’s the straight forward rock of that last member that shines through the most on their new album, Hot Streak. Defying all prog standards, the album is 13 tracks deep, and not a single one even hits the seven minute mark! If you’re looking to step outside the prog-rock world, or need a breather from heavy metal, this is going to be a great cure to what ails you! You can grab the album here.

There were two big opportunities opened up this week to support some fantastic artists. First is the young band based in the U.K., Kyros. They were formally known as Synaesthesia, and are selling an EP to help fund the production of their first album as Kyros. You can pick up the Beta EP here. Next we have the vocalist for Threshold and Headspace, Damian Wilson, who is crowd funding a pair of albums. The first is an album with Adam Wakeman, and the second is a star-studded solo album. They are being funded by a single kickstarter here.

I played a song during the set from the forthcoming Anathema live album, A Sort of Homecoming, and you can check out the video of that song below.

Finally, I mentioned that the family at ProgRock.com is getting a little bigger, and that starting this Monday at 7pm Central, 1am Universal, Mohsen is going to be doing a two-hour show called Music Unframed. You can follow the show by liking the recently started facebook page here.

Dream Theater – A Fortune in Lies
The Winery Dogs – Empire
The Dear Hunter – The Pimp and the Priest
Circus Maximus – Reach Within
Queensryche – Bulletproof
Iron Maiden – Shadows of the Valley
Circle II Circle – Untold Dreams
The Winery Dogs – Hot Streak
Unified Past – Today is the Day
Knifeworld – I Can Teach You How to Lose a Fight
King Crimson – Thela Hun Ginjeet
Karnataka – Road to Cairo
Kamelot – Nothing Ever Dies
Anglagard – Sorgmantel
The Winery Dogs – How Long
Kyros – Cloudburst
Xen – Red Letter Day
Jolly – Golden Divide
Vonassi – The Drudge
Von Hertzen Brothers – Trouble
Vangough – Abandon Me
Vision Divine – Versions of the Same
Anathema – Anathema~
The Gentle Storm – Comatose^
The Winery Dogs – War Machine
Headspace – Die With a Bullet
Voyager – Stare Into the Night
Moon Safari – Mega Moon
The Winery Dogs – Devil You Know

Review: Queensryche – Condition Human

QueensrycheBand: Queensryche
Album: Condition Human
Reviewer: Nick

Queensryche Website

Buy on Amazon

Queensrÿche is one of the few bands around in which I cannot find myself easily separating the intra-band politics and history from the music. In 2012 the band had a very ugly and public split with long time vocalist Geoff Tate. The resulting legal battles led to multiple years of two competing entities using the name “Queensrÿche” while releasing new music and touring. Those issues are settled now, with Geoff Tate changing his band’s name to Operation: Mindcrime, and the remaining members retaining the name Queensrÿche, who have just released their 2nd album without Tate, Condition Human.

Many fans had put a lot of stock in the previous self-titled album. The band had been making statements of all the creative energy that had been put on the shelf for many years, and how excited they were to go out and prove themselves. What they delivered was an EP length collection of sonically horrible songs that were a return to the metal genre, but not necessarily a return to great metal music. Many fans pointed to the fact that the album was certainly better than the bands previous effort, Dedicated to Chaos, and this I certainly will not argue, however the lackluster album combined with the bands unwillingness to stand behind the material on tour had me writing them off as a modern and relative act.

With the release of Condition Human, my opinion on that is beginning to change. For starters, listening to the album doesn’t make my ears bleed. In fact, it sounds rather good. Scott Rockenfield’s drums and Michael Wilton and Parker Lundgren’s guitars in particular cut through very clearly in the mix. While the bass is certainly more subdued, every other instrument stands out very well. Then of course, is the music itself. It no longer feels like metal for the sake of metal, and I dare say it actually stands out at times as Queensrÿche having a distinct sound again.

This is seen most notably on the album’s closing and title track, “Condition Human”. Not only does the song show what the band can do moving forward, but it also nods at the early days in a more tactful manner than anything on the prior album. On the flip side the band still finds itself making not so tasteful references to days gone by. The second track, “Guardian”, may as well be called “Revolution Calling II”. Not that the musical structures are similar, but when you match the primary chorus line of a  song from 25+ years earlier, it makes one ask, “Why?” The bigger issue at times is Todd la Torre’s vocals. Now I understand that he naturally sounds a bit like that man he’s replacing, but he sounds so much like a youthful Geoff Tate at times that I can’t help but feel it’s being done intentionally, either by his delivery technique or studio wizardry. While this certainly allows for familiarity for old listeners, it also limits their ability to carve out an identity moving forward. For a band that fought for years in court to move away from their former singer, it’s as if they retain his shadow in the band now. That issue aside, Todd’s vocals are powerful and consistent, and for that reason are a very nice addition to the modern Queensrÿche lineup.

As nice as the vocals may be, they are not the biggest part of Queensrÿche‘s resurgence with this record, not by a long shot. The biggest improvements have been driven by more interesting guitar parts and the songwriting. The previous album often sounded like a bunch of underdeveloped riffs made into short three or four minute songs.  On this record, the emphasis on simply being metal was put in the back seat, and the songs were given a chance to breathe as a result. Even a shorter track like “Eye9” seems to be far more developed than most of its contemporaries on the previous effort. As for guitarists Michael Wilton and Parker Lundgren, there isn’t much to say other than they’ve upped their game on Condition Human. The Queensrÿche album saw a return to solos, unisons, trade-offs, and stand out lead work, but there has been improvement across the board on this album. There isn’t a track that goes by without some sort of guitar work standing out and adding to the song.

One man that’s gone without mention so far is bassist Eddie Jackson, and that’s not without reason. As he has done for much of the band’s history “Edbass” manages to provide a great backbone, with a nice tone and nothing too flashy. He doesn’t standout much on the album, but with all the amazing guitar work going on he does a great job of complementing what Wilton and Lundgren provide, and not creating a “too many cooks in the kitchen” scenario.

One man that’s gone without mention so far is bassist Eddie Jackson, and that’s not without reason. As he has done for much of the band’s history “Edbass” manages to provide a great backbone, with a nice tone and nothing too flashy. He doesn’t standout much on the album, but with all the amazing guitar work going on he does a great job of complementing what Wilton and Lundgren provide, and not creating a “too many cooks in the kitchen” scenario.

There have been a lot of albums since 1994’s , and I’ve enjoyed most of them to some extent or another, but as a creative force I’ve never seen them as anything other than a shadow of themselves since that album. 21 years later, may be the album that re-establishes this band. It was especially refreshing to see the band correct the blatant audio issues with the last album, and put so much time into the writing. A major test going forward for the band will be to see if they go out and play these songs, and stand behind them. They replaced an iconic vocalist, and the fan base has been very accepting of Todd la Torre, which is quite a feat. They’ve been given the chance to resurrect their career and their image, and I hope that this particular phoenix doesn’t find the chains of nostalgia clasping around its neck, because I want more albums like from .

There have been a lot of Queensrÿche albums since 1994’s Promised Land, and I’ve enjoyed most of them to some extent or another, but as a creative force I’ve never seen them as anything other than a shadow of themselves since that album. 21 years later, Condition Human may be the album that re-establishes this band. It was especially refreshing to see the band correct the blatant audio issues with the last album, and put so much time into the writing. A major test going forward for the band will be to see if they go out and play these songs, and stand behind them. They replaced an iconic vocalist, and the fan base has been very accepting of Todd la Torre, which is quite a feat. They’ve been given the chance to resurrect their career and their image, and I hope that this particular phoenix doesn’t find the chains of nostalgia clasping around its neck, because I want more albums like Condition Human from Queensrÿche.

Nick’s Grade: A

Ep. #319 featuring Queensryche

QueensrycheOur featured album this week comes from progressive metal forefathers Queensryche! Their new album Condition Human is their second featuring new vocalist Todd la Torre, and an exciting new chapter in the band’s career. I have a full review in the works, so I won’t say too much more about it here, but if you like what you heard on the show feel free to pick up the album here.

There was a couple of new album announcements during the show, such as Reign of Darkness from Circle II Circle, due out on October 16th and available here, and Mystery‘s Delusion Rain, out November 15th and available here. And videos from both bands are available below. Also, a few shows ago I shared the Roll the Bones audio from Rush‘s upcoming R40 live concert. They have since put out the video for that song as well, and it can also be viewed below.

I also noted the new singers being announced for the next Avantasia album, and you can continue to follow those developments at their website here. I also had some wonderful Redemption news for everyone regarding their new album The Art of Loss, due out in 2016. You can check that out and continue to receive updates at their facebook page here.

Hasse Froberg & Musical Companions – Fallen Empire
Queensryche – Eye9
Coheed and Cambria – Eraser
The Winery Dogs – Ghost Town
Avantasia – Runaway Train
Circle II Circle – Victim of the Night
Redemption – Begin Again
Mystery – Delusion Rain
Thank You Scientist – Concrete Swan Dive
Queensryche – Condition Human
Kingcrow – Timeshift Box
Voyager – Fire of the Times
Iron Maiden – The Great Unknown
Vanden Plas – New Vampyre
Shadow Gallery – Legacy
Stratovarius – Rise Above It
Scale the Summit – Soria Moria
Queensryche – Toxic Remedy
Dredg – I Don’t Know
Tiles – Landscrape
David Gilmour – Today
Dream the Electric Sleep – Canary
Queensryche – All There Was
Eumeria – Rebel Mind
Marillion – The King of Sunset Town
Blackfield – 1,000 People
IQ – Closer
Queensryche – Hourglass

Next Page