Saturday, May 31, 2014

GFreedom's Juke Box Nο.94

Since today it's Saturday once again, here I am with my usual 'Juke Box' post, which is actually my weekly Top-5 songlist.
 I listen to lots of music this week, but this time it was mostly Prog. So as you can realise my Top-5 is full of Prog or Prog-related songs.
 At the end of the post I will add 2 videos from songs in my Top-5 list in order for you to listen if you want.
So without further ado, these are my best 5 songs for this week:
PROCOL HARUM: A Salty Dog (A Salty Dog - 1969)
ESPERS: Rosemary Lane (The Weed Tree - 2005)
CICCADA: She Went for Love (Dekameron- Ten days in 100 Novellas - 2011)
BARCLAY JAMES HARVEST: She Said (Once Again - 1971)
VAN DER GRAAF GENERATOR: Every Bloody Emperor (Present - 2005)
And here are the two songs I picked for today.
Enjoy the music everybody, and have a nice weekend!
Thanks for reading :)

Thursday, May 29, 2014

BOB DYLAN Live in Athens 2014. (who? Seriously??)

 I recently heard about the 2 upcoming live shows of Bob Dylan in Athens and Thessaloniki, but I wanted to be sure before writing anything here...
 So, now that I read the official announcement and saw the first concerts posters on the streets, I can write my opininon on the subject.
 There is no doubt that Mr. Robert Zimmerman (Bob Dylan's real name) is a true legend in Rock and Folk-Rock music, a great composer, and many other things. Yes I will agree. But he is also 72 years old, he has lost his voice (at least this weird kind of voice he had) since the '70's, and now what? He just makes some concerts every now and then in order to make his bank account even bigger. Considering all these, I really can't find any reason to go to the concert. I didn't go to his concert a few years ago, and most importantly in 1989 (if I remember well). So why now?
 I know there are many fans of Bob Dylan out there, who will go to see him live, and I can understand and respect that.
It's not about the money I assure you. The prices are normal I think. It's the fact that I can find any reason to go see Bob Dylan now.
 I deeply respect him as a musician and a composer, I got 18 albums in vinyl records and cd's, but that's enough I think.
 Let's go to the concerts details now: Bob Dylan will perform live in Thesalloniki on the 22nd of June, and in Athens on the 23rd of June.The Athens concert will take place in Terra Vibe park, and in Thesalloniki at a the city's port next to the sea. (That sounds very nice)...
 The tickets prices are between 33 - 39€, which is a rather fair price.
I want to wish to all of you who will go to the concerts to have a great night, filled with beautiful music.

IQ: The Road of Bones (2014) A Review...

 IQ is one of the most important bands of the music genre named as 'Neo-Prog'. They started their career in the 80's almost together with Marillion. Since then many years has passed, and a few weeks ago they released their 11th album entitled 'The Road of Bones'.
  For those who might be interested I must inform you that in a way this album can be considered as a 'concept' one. The title and the main story refers to the M56 Russian Highway which was built by politican prisoners of the Stalin regime between 1930's and 1950's. The road is almost 2.000 Km long, and it's considered as a memorial monument because the bones of the thousands people who died while constructing it were laid beneath or around the road. The land there is permanently frozen so interment into the fabric of the road was deemed more practical than digging into the permafrost to bury the bodies of the dead. 
  With such a deeply troubling theme for an album one might expect dark and melancholic music, and that's exactly the case here. The sound is rather heavy, and the atmosphere is dark. (You can tell by the cover as well).
  Upon it's release the album was available in 3 different formats: The standard single cd release (which contains 5 songs and has a total running time of almost 50 minutes), the double disc Special Edition (with 11 songs and a running time of almost 103 minutes), and a limited edition box set which was shipped in mid April, containing the Special Edition version of the album, a further CD titled The Road Of Bonus, a ticket to the album launch show at the Islington Assembly Halls on Saturday 3rd May 2014, an additional booklet Walking The Road Of Bones, a badge, a sticker and two glow sticks.
  Speaking for myself, I have the double disc special edition, and I'm still trying to get into their music and understand the album. Most of the songs are long, and with the exception of one song which is almost 4 minutes long, all the rest are over 6 minutes in lenght. The longest track here is 'Without Walls' which has a running time over 19 minutes. That's the most difficult song in the album in my opinion.
  Concluding this post I have to say that 'The Road of Bones' is a very interesting album, but only for experienced listeners, and/or IQ fans. And for sure it's an album which you enjoy more at nights...
 In the following video you can see the promo video for the album...

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Spotlights on: CRESSIDA

  Cressida were a British Progressive Rock (or Symphonic Prog) band who were active between 1968 and 1971. Their sound was an excellent sample of mellodic Progressive Rock, filled with Hammond organ and piano. In their short career they released only two albums which in our days are very rare to find and rather expensive.
   Their career started in 1968, when the guitarist John Heyworth answered to an advertisement in 'Melody Maker' magazine, and travelled to London in order to meet with the band. The band's first name was 'The Dominators', before changing it into 'Charge' together with a few members replacements. In their early days as 'Charge' they were performing live mostly in Universities and their setlist was including many cover versions (mostly Doors, Family etc) and a few songs of their own. A few months later, they changed their name once more
into 'Cressida' taken by William Shakespeare's play 'Troilus and Cressida'. Their first live performance as 'Cressida' was at the Star-Club in Germany, together with 'East of Eden' and 'Colosseum' in the Autumn of 1969. A little bit later in the same year they were the opening act for Black Sabbath, and also did a few gigs with Brian Auger and Barclay James Harvest.
  In 1970 they released their first self-titled album, which is a very good example of early British Progressive Rock, but failed to atract some attention. The band went into many troubles when they have to replace some of their members, and in 1971 with an almost new line-up they released their second album 'Asylum'. Now, this album is something that every Progressive Rock fan should have! (Asylum includes some excellent compositions with a very delicate sound and very good arrangements). A few months later the band disbanded for good.
 If any of you is interested about 'Cressida', the first thing you should do is to find 'Asylum', and if you like their style and sound, then continue with their first album. That's what  recommend at least...
  I will conclude this post by adding 2 videos: First comes the song 'To play your little game' from their first album, and 'Asylum' from their second one...
Enjoy the music and thanks for reading...

Monday, May 26, 2014

PROG & ROLL Radio show with Sonja-Kristina on the chatbox...

Hello everybody!
As I mentioned in a post here a couple of days ago, last night we had a special Prog & Roll radio show planned.
So here I am today, to write a review about this show.
What made last night's show special was the presence of Sonja-Kristina (the leader and singer of Curved Air) in the chatbox. She logged in from her house in London, listen to the whole show (which especially for last night was 2.5 hours instead of 2), and she was chatting with everybody who was there at the time.
 One hour before the show I called Sonja Kristina at her home and we spoke for a while, because she wanted to know what was going to happen. I explained to her what the show is all about, and what we are going to do. She seemed pleased and satisfied, and she actually logged in almost half hour before the show starts...
  During the 2.5 hours of the show I played the whole new album 'North Star', mixed with some songs from other bands from the 70's, plus a few songs from Curved Air's early albums. I believe the result was very good to say the least, because everybody seemed so happy with the music, but also with the fun and friendly atmosphere in the chatbox.
Many people logged in during the show, from many different countries. Even from Mexico!
As for the playlist, you can see it below:
CURVED AIR: Stay Human / Time Games, STEVE HACKETT: Can Utility & the Coastliners, CURVED AIR: Puppets / Images & Signs, RENAISSANCE: Opening Out, CURVED AIR: Interplay / Spider, PAVLOV'S DOG: Fast Gun, CURVED AIR: Magnetism, GENESIS: The Lamia, CURVED AIR: Lovechild / Colder than a Rose in Snow / Spirits in the Material World, CAROL OF HARVEST: Somewhere at the end of the Rainbow, CURVED AIR: Old Town News / Situations, VAN DER GRAAF GENERATOR: Masks, CURVED AIR: Chasing Cars / Marie Antoinette, IT'S A BEAUTIFUL DAY: Hot Summer Day, CURVED AIR: Young Mother, THE BEATLES: I me Mine, CURVED AIR: Across the Universe, DAVID BOWIE: Life on Mars?, CURVED AIR: Melinda (More or Less).
I want to say a very big thanks to Sonja-Kristina who accepted our invitation and logged in, and to all of you who joined our show last night.
See you again online on next Sunday folks!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

GFreedom's Juke Box Nο.93

Good morning everybody!
Here I am once more with my weekly "Juke Box" post, which is actually my weekly Top-5 songlist.
I listened to many good songs this week, but these are my best 5:

PORCUPINE TREE: Anesthetize (Fear of a Blank Planet - 2007)
RENAISSANCE: Opening Out (A Song for all Seasons - 1978)
ARLO GUTHRIE: City of New Orleans (Hobo's Lullaby - 1972)
SERJ TANKIAN: Sky is Over (Elect the Dead - 2007)
CURVED AIR: Colder than a Rose in Snow (North Star - 2014)
I will conclude this post as usual, by adding 2 videos with songs from my Top-5 list.
The 2 songs I chose to post are from Renaissance and Serj Tankian. Two very different songs, but very nice ones I think.
Enjoy the music, and your weekend as well!
Thank you! :)

Friday, May 23, 2014

PROG & ROLL Radio Show with Special Guest Sonja-Kristina (Curved Air)

Hello everybody!
It is my great joy and honor to announce that on this Sunday's (25/5/2014) Prog & Roll Radio Show we will have as a guest live on the chatbox Curved Air's singer and leader Sojna-Kristina.
Which means she will be online during the show, listening and - most importantly chatting - with everybody who will be on the chatbox as well.
From my behalf  in order to thank and honor her, I will make a presentation to Curved Air's latest album, entitled 'North Star' (2014) mixed with some songs from similar style bands from the '70's.
 So if you would like to 'meet' with one of the Prog - legends of the '70's, here's your chance! Prepare some questions for her if you want, (I will for sure have MANY questions ready), and join us!
 You can listen to Prog & Roll on this and every Sunday night at 21.00 CET (20.00 UK, 21.00 Italy, 22.00 Greece), and you can log in by clicking the following link:
Thank you in advance, I hope to see you there! :)

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Goodies from GFreedom's Music Collection # 14

                   NEIL YOUNG: HARVEST (1972)
   'Harvest' was the 4rth album by the Canadian musician/songwriter Neil Young, and it was released on 25th of February 1972. It's his most famous album which achieved great sales all over the world.
It reached at No.1 in Billboard album's chart, and remained there for 2 weeks. There were two hit-singles which entered the charts as well: 'Old Man' (Billboard sigles charts #31) and 'Heart of Gold' (Billboard singles charts #1).
   There are many famous musicians participating in this album, such as: Stephen Stills, Graham Nash, David Crosby, Linda Rondstadt and James Taylor. (As you can see the whole 'Crosby Stills Nash & Young' band is present here). But further than that, it also feautured 'The London Symphony Orchestra' in two songs: 'A Man Needs a Maid' and 'There's a World'.
  The style of the album is mostly Country-Rock, and that's because Neil young used a group of Country music session musicians for the recordings.
 But this album is also somehow 'responsible' for a smashing hit from another band as well.
I'm reffering to the song 'Sweet Home Alabama' which was in a way Lynyrd Skynyrd's 'answer' to the song 'Alabama' which is included here. (But also to another Young's song; 'Southern Man' from the album 'After the Gold Rush') In these two songs Neil Young deals with the problems of Racism and Slavery in the American South, so a bit later Lynyrd Skynyrd recorded their 'answer' to these songs. Here's a verse from 'Sweet Home Alabama' which reffers to that:
Well, I heard Mister Young sing about her (Alabama)
Well, I heard ol' Neil put her down
Well, I hope Neil Young will remember
A Southern man don't need him around anyhow.

  Another very interesting song is 'The Needle and the Damage Zone' which was actually a lament for the great artists who died of Heroin addiction.
 But despite the very good sales and the popularity which this album brought to Neil Young, the crtitics it received weren't as good; the opposite I would say. There were some critics like Rolling Stone's for example, calling the album  "a disappointing retread of earlier, superior efforts by Young", or another one written in the Montreal Gazette calling the album "embarrassing in places but interesting lyrically".
But with the passing years the album took the place it deserved from the start in the history of Rock music, and almost 3 decades later Rolling Stone placed 'Harvest' at #78 in the 'Greatest Albums of all time' list. 
   Speaking for myself, I bought 'Harvest' on vinyl record when I was a teenager, later on I bought it again on CD, and now I also got the MP3 version.I believe it is a wonderful album filled with great melodies and good compositions. 
I will conclude this post by adding a couple of videos from the album. I chose the songs 'Harvest' and 'Alabama'.
I hope you found this post interesting and informative.
Thank you for reading. :)

Monday, May 19, 2014

PROG & ROLL Radio Show on 18/5/2014. The Full Playlist...

Hello all!
Last night I had one more Prog & Roll Radio show as usual. This time I tried include in the playlist many upbeat songs, and I think I did it. The people who were listening seemed like they were enjoying it, and at the end they seemed pleased in general.
As for the songs I played, you can see them here:

RIVERSIDE: Cybernetic Pillow / ANATHEMA: Deep / BOB KATSIONIS: On my Own / MUSE: Stockholm Syndrom / QUEEN: Killer Queen / ROXY MUSIC: Both Ends Burning (Live) / DAVID BOWIE: Velvet Goldmine / CAMEL: Three Wishes / BLOOD CEREMONY: Ballad of the Weird Sisters / YES: Going for the One / PROCOL HARUM: Whisky Train / JETHRO TULL: Someday the Sun won’t Shine for You / CHICAGO: Listen / VAN MORRISON: The Great Deception / BLONDE ON BLONDE: Ride with Cpt. Max / MADDEN & HARRIS: Margaret O’ Grady / TREES: Murdoch / ADVENTURE: The Swan / ELOY: Mutiny.
Thank you very much for listening to one more Prog & Roll! 
I'll "see" you again on next Sunday afternoon...

Saturday, May 17, 2014

GFreedom's Juke Box Nο.92

Hello all!
It's a fine Saturday morning here in Greece, sunny and all... :)
But before I'll head out to enjoy the sunshine, I have to write here my Top-5 songs for this week, as
I'm doing on every Saturday.
Lots of music again this week, but this time I chose to include only songs from 2000 and onwards.
So, without further delay, these are my best 5 songs for this last week:
ADVENTURE: The Swan (Beacon of Light - 2009)
GALAHAD: Richelieu's Prayer (Beyond the Realms of Euphoria - 2012)
PORCUPINE TREE: Anesthetise (Fear of a Blank Planet - 2007)
MUSE: Stackholm Syndrom (Absolution - 2003)
IL RUMORE BIANCO: Tutto un Sogno (pt.2) (Mediocrazia - 2013)
And as usual, I'll conclude this post by adding 2 videos with songs from my Top-5 list.
I hope you'll like them. Enjoy the music, and your weekend!
Thanks for reading... :)
(Both videos are from my channel in YT)..

Thursday, May 15, 2014

GFreedom's Channel on YouTube. An Update...

Hello everybody!
A few weeks ago I wrote a post here about my new channel on YouTube.
Today I'm writing a review of the things I did in this channel so far...
  The first idea was to upload not so famous songs or not so famous bands to start with. (With some exceptions of course). Further than that, I had in mind to start posting in alphabetically order.
So, during the first 2 weeks I was uploading only songs from bands which start with the letter 'A'. But then I quit doing it, because every now and then there were some songs I wanted to upload, but because the band's name was starting with another letter I wasn't. And although I have a rather fast pace in uploading songs, (42 songs in almost 3 weeks so far), imagine when I would be able to upload a song from 'Whitesnake' for example! So, what I'm doing now is that I'm still uploading in this alphabetical order I mentioned, but not in a strict way.
 If any of you wants to pay a visit to my channel and see what's in there, open YT, go to channels search and then type "George Eleftheriou". In the results you will see quite a few channels under this name, but mine is the one with the 'Jester' as avatar.
If you like what will you see there, subscribe, or share, or download, or like, or just listen.
I hope many more of you will visit soon, and find some music you will like...
Thank you... :)

Monday, May 12, 2014

PROG & ROLL Radio Show on 11/5/2014 The Full Playlist...

Hello everybody!
Last night I did one more Prog & Roll Radio Show, as usual on every Sunday night. Once more I run the show all by myself because my co-host is out of the country, and therefore she was unable to participate.
In last night's playlist I tried to combine some very popular songs with some unknown ones. I believe the result was very good, and everybody seemed to enjoy it! Because if you listen only very famous songs one after the other, after sometime time it becomes kind of boring. The same happens if you listen only unknown songs in a row. But the combination of those two, works very good I think...
So, here's last night's playlist to check if you want:

PINK FLOYD: Time / MIKE OLDFIELD: Moonlight Shadow / RAW MATERIAL: Time & Illusion / PEARLS BEFORE SWINE: The Jeweller / JETHRO TULL: Aqualung / SUPERTRAMP: Breakfast in America / BARCLAY JAMES HARVEST: Rock n’ Roll Star / JAMIE ROSAS: Memoria / IL RUMORE BIANCO: Tutto un Sogno (Pt.2) / PAVLOV’S DOG: Julia / LOVE: Alone Again or / THE BEATLES: Being for the benefit of Mr. Kite / TIM BUCKLEY: Goodbye & Hello / JEFFERSON AIRPLANE: Lather / PROCOL HARUM: Rambling on / THE MOODY BLUES: Ride my See-Saw / MERCURY REV: Tonite it Shows / AMAROK: Fieldmour I / SPIRAL KEY: Colder than Heaven / ANNIE HASLAM: Still Life / LISA GERRARD: Largo
I want to thank all of you who joined last night's Prog & Roll, hoping you spend two enjoyable hours with me and  the music I chose to play.
See you on next Sunday! :)