Progtopia Archives

"This is real cream!" So says a YouTube commenter about the music of Perth, Australia's Voyager (Simone Dow, guitar; Ashley Doodkorte, drums; Danny Estrin, vocals and keyboards; Scott Kay, guitar; and Alex Canion, bass and backing vocals). Seems as good of a description as any of the powerful (and tasty) blend of metal, pop, and prog that they've been banging out for six albums now. The most recent of those, Ghost Mile, is just out, and host Mark Ashby catches up once again with Canion about the crowds they've been playing for, including in their hometown, how it's possible to be close friends and still make a band work together without either suffering, and if djent is an appropriate word to apply to them. Visit www.voyager-australia.com for more information.

Featured songs/excerpts:

"Disconnected"

"Misery Is Only Company"

"Ghost Mile"

"As the City Takes the Night"

"Lifeline"

"What a Wonderful Day"

To hear previous episodes featuring Voyager, click these links: http://progtopia.libsyn.com/episode-051-breaking-down-voyager and http://progtopia.libsyn.com/backstage-pass-4-progpower-usa-xvi-retrospective

"Like" Progtopia on Facebook (www.facebook.com/Progtopia and www.facebook.com/groups/1380357308874546/) and follow Progtopia on Twitter (@Progtopia) to send a message about the show and to receive news about current and upcoming interviews. Thanks for listening! 

Originally posted 21 May 2017

Direct download: Progtopia_111_Riding_the_Ghost_Mile_with_Voyager.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:18am EST

Six months since our last Planetary Premiere show, and we're going on the heavy side with this exclusive-to-Progtopia track from Pennsylvania's MindMaze, a prog-power metal quartet that is now on the cusp of bigger and better things. With the new album Resolve coming out at the end of the month on Inner Wound, they'll be embarking on a North American tour of over a month in length in which you'd be wise to check out their high-energy sets. Host Mark Ashby talked with guitarist Jeff Teets about listening back to older material and why they chose the theme and concept for the new album, and you'll hear Resolve's fourth track "Drown Me" here before you'll hear it anywhere else. They're online at www.mindmazeband.com.

Featured songs/excerpts:

"Moment of Flight"

"Dreamwalker"

"Edge of Eternity"

"Sign of Life"

"Drown Me"

To hear the first episode featuring MindMaze, click the link: http://progtopia.libsyn.com/episode-063-mindmaze-walks-through-the-open-door

"Like" Progtopia on Facebook (www.facebook.com/Progtopia and www.facebook.com/groups/1380357308874546/) and follow Progtopia on Twitter (@Progtopia) to send a message about the show and to receive news about current and upcoming interviews. Thanks for listening! 

Originally posted 18 April 2017

Direct download: Progtopia_Planetary_Premiere_18_April_2017_Mindmaze_Drown_Me.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:53pm EST

You know him mainly from his vocal work with classic rockers Toto, particularly on big hits like "Hold the Line" and "Rosanna," but did you know he's the guy singing backup on the Tubes' "She's a Beauty," or albums from the likes of Diana Ross, Barbra Streisand, and Quiet Riot? Bobby Kimball is in his seventh decade but still sounding like a singer half his age, and his latest solo album We're Not in Kansas Anymore has just been released in the US after a November release overseas. AOR listeners everywhere will have plenty to love about this record, and he speaks with host Mark Ashby about his early musical development and cross-racial friendship with a man nicknamed Tanner, his pride in the Grammy Awards Toto garnered with their smash album Toto IV, and how he keeps his vocals in shape after all these years. He's online at www.bobbykimball.com

Featured songs/excerpts:

"Flatline"

"Hey It's Me"

"Good for You" (Toto)

"On My Feet"

"Scam"

"Africa" (Toto)

"Like" Progtopia on Facebook (www.facebook.com/Progtopia and www.facebook.com/groups/1380357308874546/) and follow Progtopia on Twitter (@Progtopia) to send a message about the show and to receive news about current and upcoming interviews. Thanks for listening! 

Originally posted 02 May 2017

Direct download: Progtopia_110_Hey_Its_Bobby_Kimball.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:14pm EST

He's been called "discomfiting" and "overly whimsical," and while those labels are debatable, there's no denying that UK singer/songwriter Tom Slatter creates the kind of music he wants to, and fans of quirky storytelling and often-progressive music have been finding him. His latest album, Happy People, was released on the 17th of March on Bad Elephant Music, with members of the Rube Goldberg Machine (Episode 093) assisting. With concepts that are reminiscent of dystopian science fiction and riffs that are alternately toe-tapping and impossible to count, Slatter has earned himself a nomination for the Prog Magazine Limelight Award in 2016, though the world will never know why he didn't win. Hear him talk with host Mark Ashby about the literary inspirations he draws on, why bad reviews can sometimes be good, and how being late on a deadline turned into a running joke among his supporters. He's on the web at www.tomslatter.co.uk.

Featured songs/excerpts:

"The Steam Engine Murders and the Trial of Seven Bells John"

"Happy People"

"Some of the Creatures Have Broken the Locks on the Door to Lab 558"

"Even Then We're Scared"

"A Name in a File"

"All of the Dark"

"Like" Progtopia on Facebook (www.facebook.com/Progtopia and www.facebook.com/groups/1380357308874546/) and follow Progtopia on Twitter (@Progtopia) to send a message about the show and to receive news about current and upcoming interviews. Thanks for listening!

Originally posted 31 March 2017

Direct download: Progtopia_109_Tom_Slatter_One_of_the_Happy_People.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:22am EST

We love our female-fronted symphonic rock on this show, but Karnataka transcends such a label with a blend of progressive, metal, and world music that has been entrancing fans for a couple of decades. Frequent guests at festivals like this year's HRH Prog and on their own tours like the current End II End jaunts, the band (Jimmy Pallagrosi [drums], Hayley Griffiths [vocals], Enrico Pinna [guitar], Ian Jones [bass], and Çağri Tozluoğlu [keyboards]) has built a sizeable fan base through their live shows and albums like 2015's Secrets of Angels. With influences and instrumentation that suggest areas of the world from India to Ireland and all points between, they're a must-listen for fans of intelligent yet accessible prog. Jones chats with host Mark Ashby about the early pre-Karnataka years, how the classically-trained Riverdance veteran Griffiths became their singer in 2011, and why they try to play live as much as possible. They're online at www.karnataka.org.uk.

Featured songs/excerpts:

"The Gathering Light"

"Feels Like Home"

"Your World"

"Road to Cairo"

"Forbidden Dreams"

"The Calling"

"Like" Progtopia on Facebook (www.facebook.com/Progtopia and www.facebook.com/groups/1380357308874546/) and follow Progtopia on Twitter (@Progtopia) to send a message about the show and to receive news about current and upcoming interviews. Thanks for listening!

Originally posted 17 Mar 2017

Direct download: Progtopia_108_Feels_Like_Home_for_Karnataka.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:22pm EST

The feeling you get when you hear a truly remarkable voice is a special one, and that's the way many prog fans feel when they find out that Damian Wilson is part of a project. And those projects over the years have been many, whether in his early years with Landmarq through fronting Threshold and Headspace, or on his own solo albums like 2016's Built for Fighting. His versatility in flowing between genres is remarkable, and in this interview with host Mark Ashby, Wilson discusses why he would actually like to be involved in more projects, the pros and cons of performing as Jean Valjean in a touring company of Les Miz, and how fans will be able to hear a piece of him in every song he's written over the years. You can find him online and learn more at www.damianwilson.net.

Featured songs/excerpts:

"Can't Heal War"

"Impossible"

"Seek for Adventure" (Wilson & Wakeman)

"Your Life Will Change" (Headspace)

"Fire"

"Road to Supremacy" (Headspace)

"Sex & Vanilla"

"Like" Progtopia on Facebook (www.facebook.com/Progtopia and www.facebook.com/groups/1380357308874546/) and follow Progtopia on Twitter (@Progtopia) to send a message about the show and to receive news about current and upcoming interviews. Thanks for listening!

Originally posted 02 March 2017

Direct download: Progtopia_107_Nothing_Is_Impossible_for_Damian_Wilson.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:22pm EST

You could call them a jam band, you could call them instrumental prog, but whatever you do, don't called them commercial. California's Djam Karet has been creating their own brand of self-described "self-indulgent" music for over three decades, but a devoted following has managed to find them, anyway. Maybe that's because their excursions into improvised territory don't meander and wander in directions that nobody else can follow. Their approach comes off as focused and highly musical, as evidenced on almost 20 albums including their newest, Sonic Celluloid. Host Mark Ashby talked with founder and multi-instrumentalist Gayle Ellett about why they've never even thought about satisfying anyone but themselves when composing and recording, what allows them to have stayed together for so long, and whether or not he feels they have anything in common with bands like the Grateful Dead or Phish. They're on the web at www.djamkaret.com.

 

Featured songs/excerpts:

"Long Shot"

"The Denouement Device"

"Web of Medea"

"Saul Says So"

"Forced Perspective"

"Lower"

 

"Like" Progtopia on Facebook (www.facebook.com/Progtopia and www.facebook.com/groups/1380357308874546/) and follow Progtopia on Twitter (@Progtopia) to send a message about the show and to receive news about current and upcoming interviews. Thanks for listening!

 

Originally posted 13 February 2017

Direct download: Progtopia_106_Because_Djam_Karet_Says_So.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:37pm EST

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