April 15 – Portland, ME – Civic Center on-sale 3/5
April 16 – Providence, RI – Dunkin Donuts Arena on-sale 3/6
April 17 – Wilkes Barre, PA – Mohegan Sun Arena on-sale 3/6
April 19 – Huntington, WV – Big Sandy Arena on-sale 3/5
April 20 – Norfolk, VA – Norva on-sale 3/13
April 21 – Raleigh, NC – Memorial Auditorium on-sale 3/5
April 23 – Ft. Myers, FL – Live X AVAILABLE NOW
April 24 – Tampa, FL – 98Rockfest AVAILABLE NOW
April 25 – St. Augustine, FL – St. Augustine Amphitheatre
April 27 – Asheville, NC – Thomas Wolfe Auditorium on-sale 3/12
April 28 – Chattanooga, TN – Memorial Auditorium on-sale 3/5
April 30 – Birmingham, AL – Crawfish Fest on-sale 3/5
May 1 – Memphis, TN – Beale Street Fest on-sale 3/4
May 19 – Glen Falls, NY – Glen Falls Civic Center AVAILABLE NOW
May 20 – West Long Branch, NJ – MAC Center @ Monmouth University on-sale 3/5
May 23 – Camden, NJ – MMRBQ @ Susquehanna Bank Center AVAILABLE NOW
Want some dirt cheap rock to get your Friday going? Amazon.com has a killer deal on Breaking Benjamin’s latest release, Dear Agony.
You can download the entire CD for $2.99! Get it here!
ASIA, rock’s first important super-group of the 80s – featuring members from Yes, Emerson Lake & Palmer, King Crimson and The Buggles – will release Omega, its highly anticipated new album of original material. The record is due in the spring of 2010 on Frontiers Records.
Geoffrey Downes, Steve Howe, Carl Palmer and John Wetton, the four original Asia members, reunited in 2006, twenty-three years after all four had last played together. The much publicised reunion resulted in highly successful world tours, a double live LP and DVD (entitled Fantasia: Live In Tokyo) and an acclaimed studio album Phoenix in 2008 which debuted at number 73 in the Billboard charts in the USA and entered the top 100 in several European countries.
Formed at the dawn of the MTV era, Asia’s first release was the best selling album in the world in 1982 and sat at the number 1 spot in the USA for 9 weeks, powered by the classic rock anthem, “Heat Of The Moment,” and four other radio hits. Asia’s 1983 sophomore album, Alpha, also went multi-platinum and enjoyed several hit singles, including the #1 smash, “Don’t Cry”. During the recording of its third disc, the band splintered, and by the 1990s, only Geoff Downes remained from the original line-up.
The reunion came to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the band, but morphed itself into an ongoing endeavour. In 2008, they returned with the first new studio album, Phoenix, which had been strongly influenced by the fusion of talents and heritages that the band excited the music world with back in 1982. Omega shows a new renaissance for this amazing group of musicians, which seem to live up to a joie-de-vivre that stands the test of time.
Begun during the summer 2009, the writing and recording sessions of Omega, immediately showed inspiration and good feelings. “We were looking to create something different with Omega,” says keyboardist Geoff Downes. “Of course, the sound of the 4 band members of Asia will always have a certain hallmark when we play together. That’s a given. But we approached the song writing with a mind to getting a degree of variety into these compositions. Hence, you will hear areas of textures where arguably we have never gone before.”
Adds lead vocalist/bassist/guitarist John Wetton: “Asia is an English prog-rock band with a pop edge, always has been, and hopefully always will be. Accessible, melodic, anthemic songs with great playing, luxuriating in a bed of lush orchestration, with lyrics that strike a sympathetic chord in even the most cynical heart. There you have it, Omega is a themed album in Asia’s fine tradition, without the millstone of a concept.”
Steve Howe adds that “the whole recording process has been inspiring and rewarding, and I’m very excited about the result”. “I would say these are all strong individual songs” says drummer Carl Palmer. “It was a very smooth experience, and arguably one of our best records.”
For the first time since the debut album, ASIA worked with an outside producer, Mike Paxman (Uriah Heep, Status Quo) who managed to create a truly special sounding album with the highs, lows and lots of dynamics. He helped the band to put together a tapestry of sound, which demonstrates the rich strata of Asia’s music. Paxman was able to achieve this through the songs which spun real stories of actual events and experiences in locations around the globe. “The songs always have a message, hopefully positive,” says Wetton. “My songs are almost always autobiographical, so there is hope and experience in there, too. The lyric will never leave you on a negative thought. “
As with the most popular of ASIA releases, the cover art specifically designed for the project by acclaimed artist Roger Dean. The concept of the title (Omega), and the ‘Year of the Tiger’ referencing of the cover art underline the fact that this is real Asia. John Wetton explains: “The title ‘Omega’, as any fan of the band will tell you, is ‘very Asia’ (as is the album, by the way). It no more means ‘final’ than ‘Alpha’ means ‘the first’ (which it wasn’t). It’s a great sounding/looking word, and a bookend to ‘Alpha’. In many ways, musically and conceptually, the two albums share commonality.”
“We are embarking on our European tour around the middle of April, then straight in to Japan for the middle of May” says Downes. “It’s going to be fun working out the new setlist because obviously we have another album under our belt now with Omega.”
After touring Europe and Japan, ASIA will embark on a US tour late in the summer of 2010.
Omega will be released in the first pressing in digipak with one exclusive bonus track:
(*) Bonus track first pressing in digipak.
ASIA EUROPEAN TOUR DATES:
Apr. 21 – Helsinki, Finland – House of Culture
Apr. 22 – Moscow, Russia – B1 Club
Apr. 24 – Rome, Italy – Auditorium
Apr. 26 – Prague, Czech Republic – Lidovy dum Kbely
Apr. 27 – Winterthur, Switzerland – Salzhaus
Apr. 28 – Graz, Austria – Orpheum
Apr. 30 – Paris, France – Casino De Paris
May 1 – Uden, Netherlands – de Pul
May 2 – Asschaffenburg, Germany
May 3 – Nuremburg, Germany – Hirsch
May 4 – Pratteln, Switzerland – Z7
May 6 – Reichenbach, Germany – Die Halle
May 7 – Bochum, Germany – Zeche Prinz-Regent-Strasse 50-60
May 8 – Osnabruck, Germany – Rosenhof Rosenplatz 23
May 9 – Bonn, Germany – Bruckenforum
For All Things ASIA, please visit:
It seems like every year there is a solid new modern hard rock act that comes along. After listening to Razer’s new CD, Dark Devotion over the last few weeks, I would have to say they are one of the best new metal acts that I have heard in a long time. At first I thought Razer sounded like a decent mix of bands like Godsmack & Drowning Pool. In all honesty, that isn’t really fair, they may be better than both of those bands.
The first thing I noticed about Razer was the vocals of Chris Powers. Powers delivers the songs on Dark Devotion with plenty of conviction, and he has just enough roughness in his voice to make the songs interesting. The rhythm section of Razer is damn near perfect. Thundering drums and heavy bass lines help bolster the songs this album. Chris Catero has played in Mary Friedman’s solo band, so you know this guy can deliver the goods. He definitely gets it done on Dark Devotion. Jeremy Graves and Paul Sullivan are no slouches on the guitar either. There are plenty of riffs for you to feast your ears on. I doubt you will be able to listen to Dark Devotion from beginning to end without the desire to head bang, or play the air guitar.
The lead off single “Superpaun” is a heavy rocker that gets in your head. I have been listening to a large variety of bands as of late, and it is the riff from “Superpaun” that keeps sticking with me. As good as “Superpaun” is, it isn’t the best song on Dark Devotion by any means. There are several good tunes on this CD including “Cold War”, “Never Understand”, “Frozen” and “The Broken”. All of these songs could easily be a single for Razer. I believe you will be hard pressed to find a bad song on this CD.
Overall, Dark Devotion is a very strong debut from a band that we are going to be hearing a lot more about in the years to come. If you missed out on Hard Rock Hideout’s Dark Devotion listening party last Friday (2/19/10) you can still check out some songs from this album at the Razer myspace page. Don’t miss out on this hard rockin’ CD!
Rating: Out of 10
02. What I Say
03. Cold War
04. Never Understand
05. Dark Devotion
06. Right Kind Of Evil
07. Fall From Grace
09. Falling In Line
10. Save The World
11. Cut And Paste
12. The Broken
Chris Powers – Vocals
Jeremy Graves – Guitar
Paul Sullivan – Guitar
Eric Bongiorno – Drums, Backing Vocals
Chris Catero – Bass, Backing Vocals
Check out the new video “House” from Aussie rockers, The Poor.