Author Archives: Tim Hall

Summer’s End announce 2017 Lineup

Summers EndWith the Friday night headliner still to be confirmed, Frost* will headline on Saturday night, with The Tangent and Karmakanic co-headlining on Sunday.

The bill also includes Franck Carducci, Maschine, Southern Empire, Elephants of Scotland, Midnight Sun, Half Past Four, Karobow and Weenbo. If you haven’t heard of half of those, neither have I, but that’s the whole point of Summer’s End. It’s not one of those festivals with a predictable lineup heavy with heritage acts; it’s all about new discoveries, and brings in bands from Australia and the US who seldom perform in the UK

The festival will be held on October 6th to 8th 2017 at The Drill Hall, Lower Church St, Chepstow.

More details on the bands at the The Summer’s End Progressive Rock Festival website.

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Fish announces December 2017 tour

Fish has announced an eleven-date UK tour in December 2017 including two nights at London’s Islington Assembly. The dates are as follows:

  • Fri 8 Leeds University
  • Sat 9 Manchester o2 Ritz
  • Sun 10 Leamington Assembly
  • Tue 12 Cardiff Tramshed
  • Wed 13 Bristol o2 Academy
  • Fri 15 London Islington Assembly
  • Sat 16 London Islington Assembly
  • Tues 19 Cambridge Corn Exchange
  • Wed 20 Newcastle Wylam Brewery
  • Thurs 21 Glasgow o2 ABC

Billed the “Weltschmerz- Clutching at Straws tour”, the shows will feature a full performance of Marillion’s 1987 album “Clutching at Straws” alongside material from his forthcoming album “Weltschmerz”.

These will be his only 2017 live appearances, though a European tour is planned for 2018.

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Voodoo Vegas – Long Time Gone

Bournemouth’s twim-guitar hard rockers release a new music video for the song from the album “Freak Show Candy Floss”

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Ufosonic Generator – The Evil Smoke Possession

Ufosonic Generator

Italy’s Ufosonic Generator seek to combine the sounds of 70s classic hard rock with that of more recent doom metal, and end up succeeding very well at summoning something of the spirit of Black Sabbath from circa 1971. They’ve clearly listened to enough Sabbath to recognise that there’s more to it that just copying Tony Iommi’s signature downtuned guitar sound; drummer S. McManchester captures that jazz-inflected vibe that gives them that vital groove.

Not that this album is a mere retread of “Master of Reality”, there are plenty of other influences in there too, with the band citing Thin Lizzy, Uriah Heep and Cathedral amongst others, and guitarist DD Morris has his own raw and powerful sound. Lyrical themes cover space and ritual magic fuelled by booze and weed, and songs have enigmatic titles like “Meridian Daemon”, the title track “The Evil Smoke Possession” and “Mowing Devil”. The end result is a record that, while it doesn’t really do anything groundbreakingly radical, is still an enjoyable listen.

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The Mute Gods – We Can’t Carry On

A lyric video for the song from the forthcoming album “Tardigrades Will Inherit the Earth” released on 24th February

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What on Earth just happened in Sunderland?

What on earth just happened in Sunderland? The Liberal Democrats came from a very poor fourth place to take what had previously been a safe Labour seat on a 40% swing. And this for a pro-remain party in a region that voted 60/40 in favour of Leave. What is going on?

No, you shouldn’t read too much into a single local council by-election, but you can see trends. And it’s looking very, very bad for Labour. Is their strategy of backing a so-called “Hard Brexit” to cut immigration in order to protect their flank against UKIP seeing their pro-remain vote defecting on masse to the Liberal Democrats? Are Labour in the English regions about to go the way of Labour in Scotland?

And today comes the news that Tristram Hunt is leaving Parliament for a more rewarding job elsewhere, forcing a by-election in Stoke-on-Trent Central, a constituency that politically looks a lot like Sunderland in many ways.

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Anne-Marie Helder – January

A new solo song nu Anne-Marie Helder of Panic Room and Luna Rossa fame.

In her own words:

“January’ is a little ditty about this strange, bleak first month of the year ~ A time when all the Christmas decorations have been taken down,  The days are too short, the nights are too cold…  It’s grey outside, & we’ve got no money left.  We’re supposed to be getting healthy after all that overindulgence, but we can’t be bothered. All the parties are over, and there are no festivities left to save us from the interminable grey days of winter.


On the bright side, here’s a little song for you.  A reminder you that you’re not alone. It won’t last forever…  Soon it’ll be February!

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Touchstone added to Winter’s End bill

Winters End

Touchstone have been added to the bill of Planet Rock’s Winter’s End festival, held on 24-26 February at Sandford Holiday Park in Poole, Dorset. The emphasis is on hard rock and blues, and also features Chantel McGregor alongside headliners The Answer, Toseland and Inglorious.

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Prog 73 out tomorrow

prog-73-full Issue 73 of Prog Magazine, which went to press before Team Rock called in the administrators, is in the shops tomorrow.

What would have been the magazine’s final issue assuming it had made it into distribution is instead the first issue of a new era for the magazine,

It goes without saying that tributes to one of the greats of the genre who passed away last year have a lot of prominence,

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Marjana Semkina – Land míns föður

The worlds of progressive rock and classical choral music collide yet again with this Icelandic choral piece sung by Marjana Semkina of Iamthemorning.

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