Saturday, November 7, 2009

New York Prog Ensemble IZZ Set To Release New CD

11/5/2009 - New York, NY - The progressive community is buzzing with anticipation of the upcoming release by New York prog ensemble IZZ. In the past decade the group has released several highly acclaimed albums and have acumulated a large dedicated following in the process. The band's newest CD The Darkened Room is scheduled for release on November 17th and is part of an ongoing series. "This is sort of a 'Part One' of a two-part album series," says John Galgano, who plays bass with the band. "We have already started recording on the next part. There is a concept but we'd prefer to let people take from it what they get out of it, without the influence of our explanation."
"There are many new bands out there in the prog rock scene who try to recreate the spirit of the good old Seventies. I for one always thought that IZZ isn't simply one of them. Yes, they may have lent some aspects of that retro sound but IZZ is a truly special case here. The term 'recreating' doesn't really cover their potential of the band, so 'reinventing' could be a better one instead." - DPRP

Although IZZ has its own unique sound there are several influences: "Each person in the band brings a different aspect of music with them, but there is certainly a shared passion for The Beatles, Genesis and Yes," says Brian Coralian, who with fellow drummer Greg DiMiceli makes up IZZ's potent double-drumming duo. "But as individuals, our musical influences and experiences run the 'genre' gamut from jazz to musical theater to classical to latin to celtic." Some individual artists/bands who influence the members of IZZ are Radiohead, Jeff Buckley, King Crimson, Jonatha Brooke, St. Vincent, ABBA, Ben Folds, Marillion and Dave Brubeck just to name a few.

IZZ’s new studio album, The Darkened Room, offers the listener music which is at once both adventurous yet still uniquely IZZ. "Each band member gives amazing performances on this new record," says guitarist Paul Bremner, "but each of us really keeps the song and melody at the forefront of our minds and I think that is evident throughout the entire album.

"The current line-up for The Darkened Room is:

Tom Galgano: keyboards, vocals

Greg DiMiceli: drums and percussion

Brian Coralian: electronic and acoustic drums and percussion

Paul Bremner: electric and acoustic guitar

John Galgano: bass guitar, acoustic/electric guitar, vocals

Anmarie Byrnes: vocals

"I think with IZZ, the message is first and always about the music and more specifically, the melody," says Tom Galgano, keyboardist, vocalist and the band's producer and engineer. "The band members share a common passion for developing melody and feel that much of the great music of the past has a common thread - a memorable melody. So, one of our goals is always about attempting our best to bring forth memorable, catchy, interesting and creative music." "Without question one of the brightest lights on the American symphonic prog scene, IZZ melds classic and modern prog influences, strong melodies, and stirring guitar and synthesizer solos into a familar yet refreshing musical stew. The new IZZ album album My River Flows, their third full-length recording, shows the band's full musical palette: from accessible yet complex songs mixing their Yes, Beatles, and Gentle Giant affinities with a Radiohead spice to a dynamic, spiritually uplifting multi-part symphonic suite." - NEARfest website

Even before the release of IZZ's new opus, the band is back in the studio recording the second part. "What is probably more a focus at this point is completing the recording of Part 2 of this album series," John explains. "We've already started the recording process and hope to have a follow up to The Darkened Room soon. However, since all the members of IZZ consider the band to be a band that you need to experience live, we will definitely sprinkle in a good amount of live performances to promote and play out material for The Darkened Room."

In other news, IZZ was recently featured in the 2008 3RP Festival DVD along with the Flower Kings, Neal Morse, Spock's Beard, California Guitar Trio and others. The DVD is available to purchase on the 3RP official website In addition, IZZ is starting work on their own DVD that would include the band's electrifying performance at NEARFest 2007. IZZ's The Darkened Room will be available from Amazon, CDBaby, iTunes and your favorite online retailer.

Vist the official IZZ website at for the most updated information.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Magenta Release Yes Classic As Download Single

Magenta are excited to announce that they will release a version of the Yes classic Wonderous Stories as a download-only single, on Tigermoth Records, on November 15th.
The song, which will come in three alternative versions, will be available to download from all normal download sites – including Amazon and Itunes worldwide. Rob Reed talks about the bands reasons for the release:
“We are often compared favourably to Yes, and many of our fans have been asking us to have a go at a Yes piece for a while. We have been playing Wonderous Stories as part of our set during our recent run of acoustic gigs, and it was great fun to do and really well received, so we thought we’d take it into the studio and give it the full-band Magenta treatment. We think that we’ve brought something new to the song while maintaining total respect for the original, and we really hope people enjoy it.”
Wonderous Stories, from the Going For the One album, was Yes’ biggest UK hit, reaching number 7 in September 1977.
The three versions of the song will be:

1.Wonderous Stories : Full Mix

2.Wonderous Stories : Instrumental Mix

3.Wonderous Stories : Acoustic Mix
The band have also produced a video for the song, and an excerpt can be seen below. The complete video will be made available on the day of release.

Greg Amov Of Systems Theory Passes At Age 59

From the Music...What Else Blog:
it is with regret, but also relief, that I pass on that Systems Theory band-member, long-time Multi-Value/dbms programmer and computer teacher Greg Amov died last night after a hard few months battling cancer for the second time. Some of you may recall that he had esophageal cancer three years ago. Eventually it came back, became systemic, and it was the cancer that had spread to his brain that took him away from us.Amidst the turmoil and sorrow of his death, I'd like to say that it was very peaceful and quiet at his end, which was a relief after all the physical struggle of the last few weeks. It was clear to everyone around him during the afternoon that it would be sometime Tuesday, so his family convened to be with him. His wife was at his side when the final breath was taken.I do not yet know exactly what sort of memorial there will be, or when / where it will be held. But something appropriate to Greg's life and beliefs will be organized soon. I will pass on that information when I have it.Thanks to all that contacted the family through me and through Systems Theory to express hope, support, sympathy, wishes for a speeding passing, etc. That various branches of the progressive music community, and those that he worked with closely on recent programming projects, had been in touch with me meant a great a deal to Greg. Hundreds of emails, text messages and comments were posted to various forums in his final weeks, and that he was so well-regarded and admired means a great deal to me personally as his best friend of 32 years.In the midst of the sadness of his passing, let me add a bright note. Last night I got access to Greg's pair of music computers (named "Fripp" and "Eno" after two stellar musicians he admired). Everything that I could have hoped to find musically was there -- the masters for his two OOP CDs were there, plus several unreleased completed projects, some long-forgotten projects, and new tunes earmarked for both solo, Systems Theory and ViolinCyndee. So there will be new music under his name in the next year or so, as well as the re-release of wonderful "The Dark Within The Dark" (2001) and "Gecko Highway" (2005) albums.Gregory Michael Amov, b. Nov 6th 1959, d. Nov 3rd 2009, RIP.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Steve Sly Steps Down From Progday

This just in from the Progday message board:
After much thought and consideration I have made the decision to step down as the overall coordinator for ProgDay. This has not been an easy decision for me nor one that I have taken lightly. ProgDay is a very special event, and has been a part of my life for more than a decade now. There is no one specific reason why I have chosen not to continue with the festival, but there are several factors in both my personal and professional life that have led me this decision. ProgDay is a year round activity that requires a significant investment of time, money, and sweat to pull off. In the end I think I have just burned out on it to an extent and feel that this is a good time to pull away. I have made many very good friends over the years with my association with ProgDay, and appreciate the extreme effort and hard work that everyone in the organization has put in to be able to pull the festival off each year.
The good news is that the ProgDay organization is still in tact and plans for the 2010 edition of the festival are progressing as I write this. More announcements will be coming soon regarding next year.
Finally I would like to thank everyone that I have worked with in the ProgDay organization and everyone who has attended the festival in the past 12 years. I am sure I will see many of you down the road at various prog related events and future ProgDays.
Steve Sly
ProgDay 1997 - 2009

More updates on Progday as they come here on Globalprogressive rock news