Spirits Burning & Clearlight — Healthy Music in Large Doses
(Gonzo Multimedia HST117CD, 2013, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2013-05-08Spirits Burning is the ongoing project of Don Falcone and guests, many of whom appear regularly on most of the releases, including members and ex-members of various space rock bands far and wide, including Hawkwind, High Tide, Gong, The Moor, Universal Totem Orchestra, and many more (too many to enumerate here, it would take up the entire review) as well as members of other past and present bands and projects that Falcone has been involved with, offering wide variety of instrumentation. Clearlight is of course keyboardist Cyrille Verdeaux, who contributes to nearly every track here. The way Spirits Burning works is that the music is passed around to the various participants (many over long distances) where each player contributes their parts, and then when all are done, Falcone edits and mixes the results into what finally gets released. There are a lot of cooks in this kitchen. The result is a potent blend of ideas from a large number of composers and players that can pretty much go anywhere, with elements of rock, jazz, psychedelic, symphonic prog, folk, and electronic music all surfacing at various times across the thirteen tracks presented here. This time out several of the tracks feature vocals and spoken parts (some in French, courtesy Verdeaux) and the overall program leans in more symphonic and jazzy directions than the heady psychedelia and space rock of some of the earlier Spirits Burning releases. The music has a high density factor, and although a casual listen on speakers will provide a good experience, only a close listen on quality headphones will reveal all the layers of sound and detail that have gone into each of these cuts. Much herein to recommend.
First ProgStock Festival Set for October – October 2017 will see the inaugural edition of a festival called ProgStock in Rahway, New Jersey at the Union County Performing Arts Center. With a definite slant towards neo-progressive music, the event is sure to please many fans with the inclusion of such artists as Echolyn, Glass Hammer, and Aisles. The festival will take place October 13-15. » Read more
Clive Brooks RIP – Word reaches us today of another sad passing in the music world. Drummer Clive Brooks, best known as a member of such Canterbury bands as Egg, Uriel / Arzachel, and Groundhogs, has died at the age of 67. Details are sketchy at this point. The news was reported on Nick Mason's Facebook page — Brooks was Mason's drum tech. » Read more
Col. Bruce Hampton RIP – The phrase "He died doing what he loved" is almost a cliche, but in the case of Col. Bruce Hampton, it couldn't be more true. Hampton, who was born Gustav Berglund III, collapsed on stage at his own 70th birthday celebration and later passed away. The event took place at the Fox Theater in Atlanta. » Read more
ProgDay 2017 Announces First Bands – Flor de Loto, Sonar, and Infinien are the first three performers to be announced for the 2017 edition of the long-running ProgDay Festival. The 23rd ProgDay takes place Saturday and Sunday, September 2nd and 3rd, at Storybook Farm in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. » Read more