Category Archives: Progstravaganza XVII: Progression

Eryn Non Dae.

Eryn Non Dae.

France’s END. gives the metal scene exactly what is needed – something unique, groundbreaking, and a new style of extreme to follow upon. Much like fellow homeland heroes Gojira and Hacride, END. pulls off a signature sound that can immediately be picked up by the metal critics. END.’s ever evolving brand of extreme music makes for an open minded listen from start to finish. Their technicality not only stands out, but also goes towards metal’s advantage, expanding the genre.

END. delivers complex and brutal structures while at the same time adding doses of dark and apocalyptic moods, keeping you addicted. Their creativity, power, and aesthetics without a doubt will stun the metal genre.


Vital Element on Progstravaganza compilation

Vital Element

Passion is the single most important word for Vital Element. A passion for music is what brought them together and drives them to create. Their songs take you on a journey between optimism and despair, with dynamics and atmosphere being key elements.

Trying to push their own musical limits, they have been working at it since 2010, leaving no stone unturned in the progress. Tireless days of hard work and dedication, making every note count has brought them to their first album release in 2012. With “Our Modern Age” they paint the scene for their view on the world around them. Welcome, feel free to look around.


Tucana on Progstravaganza compilation


It would not be a lie to say that we started back in late 1980’s, at that time Jonas Nitz (Keyboards) and Niklas Birgersson (Vocals) began together under the name of Tucana.

By 1989 Jonas had left the band and Mikael Larsson (Guitar) and Johnny Rosengren  (Bass) along with some other members had joined under the name of Wistaria. A few demos were made and a couple of shows, but in mid 1991 Johnny left the band and after  the band disbanded in1992, Mikael and Niklas continued their musical companionship  together.

Though our goal was to get a record deal, we never actively searched for it. In 2008 all of  that changed when Johnny contacted Mikael about a totally different matter but was  interested in what Mikael and Niklas were doing at the time. In the meantime, Johnny  had started his own independent record label in The Netherlands called Art Performance  Production. Mikael played a song for Johnny and the deal was done. Mikael then decided  that if there was going to be an album, Johnny would have to play the bass in the band,  which Johnny gratefully accepted.

To help reconstruction the songs and to write new material, Jonas was contacted and  accepted the position as the new Keyboard player.

For the next years the trio Niklas, Mikael and Jonas; strongly influenced by classical  music and hard rock references, started writing the material for the coming album while  searching for a drummer who was ready for the task. After some testing of different
drummers, Niklas, by coincidence, put in an ad in the “Selling Drum kit” section on an Internet sell and buy site that a drummer was needed, Jari Katila contacted the band and did a tryout and as a result; he is now our drummer.

Through the recording, which took place at Jonas home studio with him recording it, we  had to take a pause when Mikael first fell in the slippery snowy Swedish winter weather,  giving him a concussion (although, we would like to say that he was in the studio  recording a guitar solo and fell with the back of his head onto the distortion pedal) and  shortly after that, Mikael also suffered a “Frozen shoulder syndrome” which took almost  6 months to heal. During the time some of the vocals was redone because it lacked the power that was needed and the guitar was redone a couple of times before we finally got  it right.

At the end of spring 2012 the recording was delivered to Over the Hill Production and  Mixer man Mikael Lundin, who had previously worked with other mixing/productions  for Johnny’s company, Johnny and Mr. Lundin mixed and produced the album together.

The reviews of the album has been very positive and we are now looking forward to take  our music out on the road while the writing trio (Mikael, Niklas and Jonas) continues to  write new songs for the follow up.

After the release we got many questions if there where any demos or recordings from the  early years and if we would consider releasing them, though when going through the  demos we found that time has not been very friendly with the recordings, they lack  enough good sound and would need considerate cleaning and enhancement to be able to even get close to anything that would be considered a good recording for a release, as a  result; we decided to start re recording 10-12 old songs from 1986-2007 which by any  luck will be released in 2014.

R-Evolution Band on Progstravaganza compilation

R-Evolution Band

R-EVOLUTION BAND born in 2010 from an idea of the multi-instrumentalist and composer Vittorio Sabelli. The main target of the band is to destroy pre-existing styles and completely change them by a new approach using different sounds and contemporary elements (this is the meaning of the name R-E Revolution/Evolution Band). In 2011 the band records the first album “Versus” produced by Wide Sound. Then it took part to several Festival and made concerts in many Club.

The new project “The Dark Side Of The Wall 1979-2013” is not an emulation or just a cover of the original one, but it completely downs and builds up again the Pink Floyd masterpiece THE WALL, for the first time since 1979.

This album shows how much the musicians can continuously move between different styles and adapt smoothly to several contests and sounds always keeping their minds open at 360 degrees.



ONOMY's Drew Griffiths


ONOMY is an experimental fusion of progressive, alternative music and aggressive dark ambient and industrial themes. Inspired by a wide variety of artists, surrealists and film soundtracks. ONOMY seeks to access an organic core within the digital medium, using discomfort and dissonance a playground for atypical sounds, arrangements and album flow.

‘(Hybrid) I, Pariah’, the project’s 60-minute debut, is comprised of three twenty-minute acts, posing conceptual explorations of psychological oppression, the paradox of freedom, trans-humanism and existentialism.


Brandon Dyke on Progstravaganza compilaiton

Brandon Dyke

Brandon Dyke is a progressive rock singer songwriter and guitarist from Greenville, SC. His vocals reflect the styles of Peter Gabriel, Phil Collins, David Gilmour, Steven Wilson, with a hint of Geddy Lee.

Brandon’s guitar work is inspired by players such as Alex Lifeson, Eric Johnson, David Gilmour, Trey Anastasio, Steve Morse, John Petrucci, Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, Steve Hackett, Steve Howe, Django Reinhardt, and a range of classical guitarists from Andres Segovia to Agustin Barrios. Inspired by his favorite band, Rush, Brandon writes songs without boundaries or rules.

Brandon released an album with guitar duo Spatha, Music for Two Guitars, in 2004. In 2010, He composed a solo guitar piece as a tribute to Alex Lifeson called “Son of Life.” The video received over 12,000 views on YouTube. A separate Son of Life score release video included a free audio download of the song.

Dyke released his debut solo guitar album, Timeless Moments, in 2012. He describes his solo guitar compositions as progressive classical guitar: character pieces that reflect a story or conceptual meaning. A songwriter at heart, Brandon released his first progressive rock single “You’re the One I Can’t Live Without,” a song he wrote for his wife, in January 2012. The structure of the song was a statement in itself, featuring a 3:30 minute catchy progressive rock song with killer guitar riffs and creative guitar layering, followed by another three minutes of beautifully layered guitar solos.

Brandon records, mixes, and produces his own music and then teams up with mastering engineer genius Andy VanDette to complete the final product. (Andy has mastered a host of successful artists’ work through the years, including the bands Rush, Porcupine Tree, and Dream Theater.) In June of 2013, Brandon released the progressive rock ballad, “Hindsight.” In addition to performing vocals, guitars, and keyboards, Hans Wolff (violin) and Robert Nance (fretless bass) added their color to the song. The official music video for Hindsight was later released in February 2014.

In January of 2014, Brandon released an acoustic cover song of Mission by Rush. He created the blending effect of acoustic and electric guitars using a gypsy jazz guitar along with a 59 Seymour Duncan neck pick up. Brandon’s acoustic cover of Mission was shared on the Rush fan forum site Rush Is a Band’s Facebook page, resulting in over 500 plays in one day. Brandon’s current project is a progressive rock album called Headspace. The album includes the songs, “You’re the One I Can’t Live Without,” “Hindsight,” and “Mission.” Fans can follow the album’s progress on Sound Cloud. Other songs to be released on the album include “Sift,” “Enough,” “Headspace” and “Imaginary People.” Brandon performs with two other musical projects in the Greenville, SC and Asheville, NC music scenes; progressive rock trio C.B.S. and progressive world fusion group Trade Routes.


Perfect Beings on Progstravaganza compilation

Perfect Beings

When Chris Tristram wasn’t playing bass with Slash or Marjorie Fair, he often thought about going back to his musical roots. On a whim, he filmed himself playing along with “Roundabout” by Yes and posted a video online.

Almost 100,000 viewers watched it, including Moth Vellum founder Johannes Luley, who was looking to complete the lineup of his new project Perfect Beings. Tristram’s flawless and confident performance instantly convinced Luley that his search was over.

Half a year earlier, Luley had approached songwriter Ryan Hurtgen, a fresh transplant from Nashville, about collaborating on a progressive rock project. The two envisioned an album that would honor the style of traditional prog rock, while infusing it with a fresh take on melodic lines and lyrics, and by doing so, catapult the genre into our present time. They loosely based the album on the 2013 sci-fi novel “Tj and Tosc” by Suhail Rafidi – its themes of transformation, self-identity, technology, and love in a post-apocalyptic world were a perfect fit with the music. Dicki Fliszar, drummer for Bruce Dickinson’s band, joined them in the late writing stages.

Once the concept for the album was fully sketched out, the search was on for a keyboard player and a bassist. Fliszar’s former band mate Jesse Nason and the afore mentioned Tristram were the undisputed choice. In the spring of 2013 Perfect Beings recorded their debut at Luley’s studio, My Sonic Temple in Los Angeles.

Perfect Beings are all about the interplay of five forces, each bringing their individual styles and talents to the plate, combining them into one big musical feast. After playing their first shows in January, their self-titled debut ”perfect_beings” is being released February 1st, 2014. Additional shows are planned in Los Angeles, San Francisco and cities in between to support the release.


Personal Signet on Progstravaganza compilation

Personal Signet

Raw and uniquely sounding guitars merging with strong vocal melodies accompanied by top-level musicianship of all band members. That is Personal Signet, a group of amazing instrumentalists and gifted songwriters from the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Personal Signet’s music stands somewhere in between art rock and progressive metal, often being spiced up by electronic arrangements and programming.

Their first EP „Try Out“ was a result of the lead guitarist’s attempt to venture into more straightforward guitar music with melodic vocals as a contrast and alternative to his own death-metal band Scenery. The outcome exceeded the band’s expectations and the EP was very well received. Consequently, the band started touring at local clubs and venues, ranking high at domestic music contests and building their fan base.

In 2008, Personal Signet released their debut album “Badtime stories” containing ten tracks. The reviews were extremely positive describing the band as a leader of domestic progressive metal scene. The successive touring and development was unfortunately slowed down by a rising workload of the drummer who was eventually forced to temporarily move to Switzerland.

After a short break, Personal Signet are now back with a new EP Wires to prove their undeniable talent and music skills. The new material released in July 2012 has generated a great deal of positive feedback in a short time. Not only did the band secure the spot at the biggest metal festival in the Czech Republic, Masters of Rock, but the songs have also reached a solid airplay on the progressive radio station Progulus in Minnesota, USA. Promoting their critically acclaimed 2nd EP Wires, the band went on a two-month club tour in the Czech Republic. At the moment, the guys are working on new material for the second official album scheduled for spring 2014. 


Joel Gilardini of The Land of the Snow

The Land of the Snow

The Land of the Snow is a one-man-band and a state of mind of Swiss experimental guitarist Joel Gilardini. The roots of this project are to find at the end of 2009 in a challenging question: “If DJs and electronic-musicians stand alone on stage, why can’t the same be done with a guitar?”

At the beginning of 2010 the first live-activities started and the project was then known under the moniker “The Gila Monster”. After these first concerts (the last of which saw tGM supporting US-prog-metal band Dysrhythmia at Grindwerk, Zurich/CH), J.Gilardini took a break and after a period of inner-seeking and self-discovery, his feeling about the project changed drastically.

Therefore 2011 saw the final birth of The Land Of The Snow!

The music became deeper, more complex, unpredictable and with a higher emotional involvement than ever before. TLotS is intended not only as a musical project, but it’s also as medium to explore and develop oneself inner nature.

In 2012 TLotS started a collaboration with Italian visual artist Petulia Mattioli (who worked with artists such Bill Laswell, Nils Petter Molvear, Eraldo Bernocchi, Thomas Fehlmann, and many more), which resulted in 2 peculiar music videos. During that year, TLotS also started producing its first EP with the technical support of Andi Pupato at the mixing-desk (ex-Nik Bärtsch’s Ronin percussionist). The Belonging To Nowhere EP was finally released in Juny 2013 (on swiss label Altrisuoni) and features for the first time ever some real drums, played by fellow drummer Daniel Schuchter,
and artworks by Karyn Crisis (former singer of Crisis and now Ephel Duath).

The path is still open and The Land Of The Snow is ready for new challenges!


Structural Disorder

Structural Disorder is a progressive metal group formed in Stockholm, Sweden in September 2011.

The band consists of Markus Tälth (Guitar/Vocals), Jóhannes West (Electric Accordion/Vocals), Hjalmar Birgersson (Guitar/Vocals), Erik Arkö (Bass/Vocals) and Karl Björk (Drums).

The band was formed during the summer of 2011 by Erik Arkö, Johannes West and Markus Tälth. The band was later completed with the arrival of the drummer Karl Björk and guitarist/vocalist Hjalmar Birgersson.

The work with the EP ” A PRELUDE TO INSANITY” began instantly once the band was complete and on January 1st, the recording session began. The recording session took place night time during the period January 1st – january 5th at Högskolan Dalarna in Falun. The EP was in part produced by the band, but also by sound engineer John Nilsson Tysklind, who has recently released an album with his band Rhinestone. Co – engineer Scott Crocker had also a large part in the form that ” A prelude to insanity” took.

The EP was recorded during four ten hour shifts, followed by a month of mastering, mixing and general exploring of numerous ideas that came to mind during this phase in the production. The EP was released on the 9th of march 2012.

With more material and higher ambitions the band once again entered the studio in Falun in january 2013, this time with Scott Crocker as the sound engineer. The recording took place in the studio as well as in Stockholm. Eventually, the Full lenght debut, entitled “THE EDGE OF SANITY” was released on the 4th of february 2014.

The band has since november 2013 been rehearsing new songs, and so far the contents for the potential second album stays in the progressive vein, with a slighty different – but yet familiar – sound compared to the one on “The Edge of Sanity”.