Author: Lorne Murphy

Charming, handsome, brilliant and humble Canadian. Wine lover and Python fanatic. Prog, jazz, rock and metal listener for most of his forty-something years. Only vaguely aware of anything else going on.

Affinity – Affinity (Expanded and remastered) (Esoteric)

Christmas has come early this year with the arrival of Affinity, the sumptuous and expansive boxed set celebrating the English quintet's eponymous 1970 release. It's the latest restoration project in Esoteric's impressive series of reissues, and one of the most comprehensive to date. Although some old-timers may be fortunate enough to have the original Affinity..

Proud Peasant – Peasantsongs (Basement Avatar Records)

Oldfield, Crimson, Giant, Gryphon, Morricone... Proud Peasant. In December of 2014, some friends and I compiled our annual Top 10 Albums Of The Year lists, and there were very few surprises overall… but there was one. Way up near the top of my list was Flight, the charming out-of-the-blue debut from American band Proud Peasant,..

Dream Theater – A View From The Top Of The World (InsideOut)

Are Dream Theater still capable of balancing skill and technique with memorable melodies and direct lyrics? Unbelievably, it's now been more than a decade since the surprising, dramatic exit of Dream Theater drummer and founding member Mike Portnoy and the subsequent replacement in Mike Mangini (seriously, where is the time going?). Soon we will be..

The Watch – The Art Of Bleeding

Sunset. After missing the last bus, she walks back tentatively to the house she has rented for the summer. A house with memories of holidays long ago. She shuts the door. In the half-light, something catches her eye. A chair has been moved, ever so slightly. And the darkness is deepening. This can’t be good...

Auri – II: Those We Don’t Speak Of (Nuclear Blast)

The honeyed voice of Johanna Kurkela glides over the lush empyrean chords of Kiss The Mountain, the remarkably beautiful halfway point of Auri's sophomore release Those We Don't Speak Of. It's an unusual placement in the running order; other bands might have chosen such a piece to close their album, drifting off like a lullaby...

Steve Hackett – Surrender Of Silence (InsideOut)

It takes mere seconds to recognize the architect of the mysterious guitar as it emerges from the stillness. The famed fingers of Steve Hackett tap and glide across the fretboard with familiar dramatic flair in The Obliterati, the dark overture to his 28th studio album Surrender Of Silence. Notes bend until they cry out, primal..