Welcome to Prog's Tracks Of The Week. Six new and diverse slices progressive music for you to enjoy.
Congratulations to Uk quirky prog duo Hats Off Gentlement It's Adequate, who won last weeks TOTW with their climate-change themed Burn The World, with German progger Gerd Weyhing in second place and cinematic prog duo Silent Skies in third.
The premise for Tracks Of The Week is simple - we've collated a batch of new releases by bands falling under the progressive umbrella, and collated them together in one post for you - makes it so much easier than having to dip in and out of various individual posts, doesn't it?
The idea is to watch the videos (or listen if it's a stream), enjoy (or not) and also to vote for your favourite in the voting form at the bottom of this post. Couldn't be easier could it?
We'll be bringing you Tracks Of The Week, as the title implies, each week. Next week we'll update you with this week's winner, and present a host of new prog music for you to enjoy.
If you're a band and you want to be featured in Prog's Tracks Of The Week, send your video (as a YouTube link) or track embed, band photo and biog to us here.
So get watching. And get voting at the bottom of the page.
SOEN - MEMORIAL
Swedish-based prog metallers Soen will release their brand new studio album Memorial through Silver Lining Music on September 1, form which is taken new single and title track Memorial. As usual the band are keen to make a point, this time the weighty subject of war and its effects.
“It is a song to remind us of the victims of the power games that our so-called leaders play”, comments founding member and drummer Martin Lopez.
“It’s about PTSD,” adds vocalist and co-founding member Joel Ekelöf, “and the effect war has on people like you and me that are sent to kill and die and have to pay that price for the rest of their lives.”
EMMA TRICCA - DEVOTION
Psych/folk singer-songwriter Emma Tricca released her most recent album, Aspirin Sun, earlier this year through Bella Union, form which comes this delightfully trippy romp. Devotion features a wonderfully quirky accompanying video that perfectly uits the sweet pysch nature of the music.
"Emma’s music has always made me feel a connection to the ground we tread," says video director/artist John Lee Bird. "Her music conjures a magical journey into our emotional connection with all of nature. Enchanting; So, who better to play her love interest in this felt film than The Great God Pan. The God of Spring and fertility. A mischievous pairing in this wilderness of dreams."
DEVIN TOWNSEND - FORGIVE ME (LIVE)
The mercurial and hardworking Devin Townsend will release the third release in his Devolution series – Empath Live In America - through InsideOut Music on August. The Devolution series so far has comprised some unique live performances, and this one is no different: a document of the tour that was cut short in early 2020 due to the onset of the pandemic.
"This was a very unique tour for me, and one that was regrettably cut short by the pandemic," says Townsend. "It was a stripped back version of the Order of Magnitude band (without choir and a few other members…), but as I try to do with each tour, the goal was to make this a unique and special night. Therefore, this tour marked a ‘free form’ version of the material. There were no backing tracks, click tracks, or even a setlist, so every night was unique and different. The audience yelled out requests and we just rolled with it. The material was therefore interpreted in unique ways and the experience was a very special ‘fly by the seat of our pants’ musical night. It’s a raw and off kilter performance and I’m thrilled to have documented it."
JO BETH YOUNG - WOLF SONG
Electro-folky progger Jo Beth Young has already gained attention performing under the banner's of both Talitha Rise and RISE, and Wolf Song is the new single from her third album, Broken Spells, due for release via Wise Queen Records in October 2023. The ethereal dream-folk track spins a bitter-sweet tale of warning and sympathy for a curious wolf like character. Ethereal vocals weave through an emotive cello (from Silver Moth’s Ben Roberts) guitar and electronic landscape that conjures up a woodland scene.
"Wolf Song is one of the oldest tracks on the album and was originally written on a broken guitar at a friends house," she explains. "The Wolf I think is very much an exploration of being on the end of a narcissist’s confusing behaviour.There is a conflict of feeling the danger and cruelty of such a character but also the sympathy you might have for them, because ultimately, they are damaged in some way and lonely. Originally the track had more of an acoustic, ethereal sound but I shaped it with the brilliant Matt Blackie in Spain (Engineer and Producer) who worked with me to add the beats and more electronic elements which is what I wanted to explore on the new album."
RED32 - A PLACE TO CALL HOME
When a band cite influences such as Ozric Tentacles, Klaatu, David Sylvian and Camel, but also point out that new song A Place To Call Home was picked up on both the Yacht Rock Podcast and Yacht Rockin’ Radio, then you take notice! Red32 are a US quartet who's self-titled debut album was released earlier this year, and has already garnered the band with plaudits such as “the Space Age Steely Dan.”
“A Place to Call Home is about Ice age, climate change, nuclear war, virus outbreak, at some point the earth is going to be uninhabitable for mankind," says keyboard player Tony Romero. "For the human race to carry on we will have to travel into outer space to find a new home. This is a song about our future adventures into the unknown."
HEKZ - SABOTAGE
UK prog metallers HeKz are on the verge of releasing a new double concept album, Terra Nova, from which comes the rampaging new single Sabotage. The new album, including Sabotage, features the violin talents of special guest Lucia La Rezza, as well as trumpeter Nic Weaver further bolstering the band's sound. Sbotage has been inspired by Jules Verne’s timeless classic Around The World In 80 Days.
'The lyric video for Sabotage is a visual journey which begins in the suffocating grip of an oppressive city before soaring high in a vibrant hot air balloon, then finally venturing into the unknown in search of a fresh start," says singer and bassist Matt Young. "The video perfectly captures the essence of breaking free from the confines of everyday life and embracing the exhilarating possibilities of a new beginning."
HARALD PLONTKE - ABANDONED FURNACE
German musician Harald Pontke who grew up with the classic sounds of Pink Floyd, ELP, Genesis and Yes and today finds inspiration from more modern prog movers such as Tool, Tesseract, Haken and Iamthemorning. Although he set out as a musician Plontke diversified into computer programming, but has recently started making music again. The 13-minute plus of Abandoned Furnace suggests he made the right choice.
"I worked with a classical composer to arrange the strings and a recording studio for mix and mastering," Plontke explains. "It is about an abandoned blast furnace, which gives work and life for thousands of employees, but now is abandoned and a museum where one can imagine it's glorious times. The idea of the video is to visit the furnace and when driving down with the elevator, all the memories of the past (and also my memories of the sad relationship) comes back into mind, but full of confidence to convert the saved energy into new hope."