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User Page: Mike

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Joined 17 years ago
Last Visit 2 days ago
Ratings Submitted 1809
Main Genres Set 2391
Artists Added 4072
Albums Added 23566
Trust level 8/10
Permalink http://progfreak.com/user/Mike
About Me
I'm the founder of this crazy website ... I hope it's helpful to you in some way!
Contact me Please write me a mail at info@progfreak.com. Contributors can also join progfreak.slack.com for easier communication (ask me for an invite).
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Review by Mike 3 days ago <Permalink>
Black Midi - Hellfire 2022
8.9
Prog Rock in Opposition
Wow! Very nice, and a pleasant surprise after I had read a couple of reviews. This piece of rock is pretty much in opposition, and not for the faint of heart in terms of dissonance and roller-coaster-like changes in style and mood in rapid succession. But I'm buying the package, and I especially like the entire flow of the album, and appreciate the odd harmonic parts here and there that provide a nice and necessary contrast to the otherwise relentless onslaught.
Review by Mike 24 days ago <Permalink>
Kaprekar's Constant - The Murder Wall 2022
8.5
Prog Rock
Calm, gentle, symphonic ... somehow the whole album feels like a comfy chair, if that makes sense. Very harmonic and always cleverly shifting gears. Excellent vocals. Will be put on repeat ...
Review by Mike 24 days ago <Permalink>
Megadeth - Rust in Peace 1990
9.8
Technical Prog-Related Thrash Metal
The unofficial best Thrash album of all time. What else is there to say? Stunning musicianship, brilliant songs, relentless pace.
Review by Mike 25 days ago <Permalink>
The Tangent - Songs From The Hard Shoulder 2022
8.8
Prog Rock
Awesome! The album really has this sort of "tangential flow" going, meandering from theme to theme, but without getting repetetive or boring. Well done!
Review by Mike 25 days ago <Permalink>
Farpoint - The Journey 2022
6.0
Prog Rock
A decent effort! But then again I found nothing that stands out, and the songwriting is quite predictable. The band needs to find their niche and then try to fill it more boldly.
Review by Mike 25 days ago <Permalink>
Pure Reason Revolution - Above Cirrus 2022
8.5
Prog Metal
This flows nicely! Quite captivating, really tasty composition and an eclectic mix of moods.
Review by Mike 28 days ago <Permalink>
Porcupine Tree - CLOSURE / CONTINUATION 2022
9.2
Prog Rock
A brilliant return! It is difficult to come out of a 10+ years hiatus. I really like that Steven chose to look forward, and the result sounds pretty unique. Reminiscent of old PT at times (e.g. Herd Culling harkens back to In Absentia days), but more often refreshingly aggressive and harsh, departing from the somber melancholy that had (threatened to) become a trademark.
Review by Mike 2 years ago <Permalink>
Steven Wilson - The Future Bites 2021
8.8
Prog Pop
A bold step in the right direction. To me, all of Steven's solo albums are precious in their own way, this one included. Not "prog" in the traditional sense, but beautifully made intelligent pop music, with a lot of subtle progressive touches that take some time to discover. I also love the sarcasm, the love/hate relationship with consumerism.
Review by Mike 3 years ago <Permalink>
Haken - The Mountain 2013
9.0
Heavy Prog Metal/Rock
A flawless masterpiece. I really like all Haken albums so far (2020), but this one is just so beautiful and pure, yet at times really rough and sinister. A true work of art, with all the recurring themes and acapella bits. Wonderful!
Review by Mike 3 years ago <Permalink>
Ghost - Prequelle 2018
9.1
Prog-Related Metal/Rock
A timeless masterpiece. Ghost are often misjudged as a shallow/gimmicky band, but especially on this album they managed to combine deep lyrics about death and the shortness of life with grotesque humour, great melodies and awesome musicianship. Metal at its finest.
Review by Mike 3 years ago <Permalink>
Pink Floyd - Wish You Were Here 1975
9.7
English/British Minimalistic Prog Rock
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Review by Mike 3 years ago <Permalink>
Opeth - In Cauda Venenum 2019
9.1
Symphonic Prog Metal
A thrilling return to form! This album is a nice synthesis of Opeth's former heavy outings and the newer outputs, which were more than decent albums, but also seemed a little tame to me. There is no extreme metal on this album, but it is really dark in some places, a sinister roller-coaster ride. Takes a few spins to appreciate, as any decent prog album should.
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Comment by Mike 5 years ago
Heart of CygnusListen - Tales From Outer Space! 2009
8.9
Spacey Prog Metal
Revisited this just now after quite a while ... this is a really, really beautiful EP. They really nailed the SciFi vibe and combined heart-warming melodies with energetic driving metal tracks. Can't wait to hear what they will do next, since at this time their Facebook page says "Hobbit Prog" ...
Comment by Mike 6 years ago
Ayreon - The Source 2017
9.2
Symphonic Prog Rock
This might quite possibly be Arjen's best effort yet. Flawless, impressive, super cool!
Comment by Mike 8 years ago
Devin Townsend - 2014
8.8
Epic Prog-Related Metal
I love how Devin combines calmness and aggressive elements ... at times he forms huge walls of sound, but you can always discern the individual parts.
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Comment by Mike 8 years ago
Threshold - For The Journey 2014
8.1
Prog Metal
Tired. That's the word I would use to describe this album compared to the magnificent March of Progress. All things considered, it's a solid release, but it lacks the drive and determination of Thresholds best releases. Ironically some of that shines through in the bonus track ...
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Comment by Mike 9 years ago
Opeth - Pale Communion 2014
8.3
Prog Rock
"Dissonance by numbers" ... that came to my mind when I listened to this album. Gone is the inspired songwriting of old, and the occasional warmth and melancholy that always stood out for me in Opeth - an unfortunate trend that started on their previous album Heritage.
Review by Mike 10 years ago <Permalink>
Dream Theater - Dream Theater 2013
7.9
Eclectic Prog Metal
Not bad - bad also not really great. Granted, I've only listened to the album one time - but I very much doubt that it will grow considerably on me over time, because the songwriting leaves me unimpressed.

I can't help thinking that Portnoy's absence has moved Dream Theater closer to "normalty" - they still have an "out there" composer (Rudess), but I really miss Portnoy's over the top crazyness and his desire to incorporate an eclectic range of influences (ranging from 70s Prog Rock to modern Art Rock like Muse and Extreme Metal like Opeth) into the music.

On this album the most obvious influence is Rush - indeed, at one time the lyrics mention "restless angels" and I couldn't help thinking of Rush's recent album (Clockwork Angels), since the music was also a good match.

Having said all that, the album is very well made and nice to listen to, all the other DT ingredients are there ... even LaBrie's vocals are much better than usual. Alas, the inspiration for great tunes is sorely missed. I really prefer Haken's 2013 album "The Mountain" - no THAT's inspired songwriting, and musically easily on par with Dream Theater.
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Comment by Mike 10 years ago
Frank Flight Band - Remains 2013
7.5
Non-Prog Rock
The vocals are not my cup of tea, and the songwriting could be a little bit more inspired ... with that said, this is a more than decent album, and quite an improvement over the previous one. The production is really good, and the tracks are a joy to listen to, all with tasteful bluesy guitar leads, non-intrusive symphonic keyboards and quite some variation in style, bordering on, but never quite crossing into Prog.
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Comment by Mike 10 years ago
Paul Gilbert - Vibrato 2012
8.7
Non-Prog Rock
Great slow pace guitar shred slash blues album, and as is always the case with Paul Gilbert: great musical humor. Prog Fans listen up: though the album is not prog, it includes the Yes masterpiece Roundabout as a bonus cover track!
Statistics
Charts
Albums
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2022
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Live
DVD
EP
All
Favorite LPs of 2022
1
2
1-20 of 22  
Big Big Train - Welcome To The Planet
 #2
9.1
Symphonic Prog Rock
Black Midi - Hellfire
 #3
8.9
Prog Rock in Opposition
Ghost - Impera
 #4
8.9
Non-Prog Metal/Rock
Ashenspire - Hostile Architecture
 #5
8.8
Prog Extreme Metal
The Dear Hunter - Antimai
 #6
8.8
Prog Rock
Pattern-Seeking Animals - Only Passing Through
 #9
8.8
Eclectic Prog Rock
Oceans Of Slumber - Starlight and Ash
 #10
8.6
Prog-Related Rock
Derek Sherinian - Vortex
 #11
8.6
Prog Jazz/Rock
The Michael Schenker Group - Universal
 #12
8.6
Neo Classical Non-Prog True Metal
Cult of Luna - The Long Road North
 #13
8.5
Prog Metal
Pure Reason Revolution - Above Cirrus
 #14
8.5
Prog Metal
Kaprekar's Constant - The Murder Wall
 #15
8.5
Prog Rock
Star One - Revel In Time
 #16
8.4
Prog Metal
Kaipa - Urskog
 #17
8.3
Prog Rock
Black Country, New Road - Ants From Up There
 #18
8.2
Prog Independent
Weezer - SZNZ: Summer
 #19
8.2
Heavy Non-Prog Rock/Metal
Steve Vai - Inviolate
 #20
8.2
Prog-Related Rock
Playlist
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128
1-20 of 2551  
Black Midi - Hellfire 2022
 2 days ago
8.9
Prog Rock in Opposition
Nick Drake - Pink Moon 1972
 2 days ago
7.5
Non-Prog Si/So
Black Midi - Hellfire 2022
 3 days ago
8.9
Prog Rock in Opposition
Black Midi - Hellfire 2022
 3 days ago
8.9
Prog Rock in Opposition
Ashenspire - Hostile Architecture 2022
 6 days ago
8.8
Prog Extreme Metal
Cult of Luna - The Long Road North 2022
 7 days ago
8.5
Prog Metal
Black Country, New Road - Ants From Up There 2022
 9 days ago
8.2
Prog Independent
The Dear Hunter - Antimai 2022
 12 days ago
8.8
Prog Rock
Oceans Of Slumber - Starlight and Ash 2022
 17 days ago
8.6
Prog-Related Rock
Witherscape - The Northern Sanctuary 2016
 21 days ago
8.8
Heavy Prog Metal
Iron Maiden - Powerslave 1984
 21 days ago
9.0
Heavy Prog-Related Power Metal
Green Carnation - A Blessing In Disguise 2003
 21 days ago
8.6
Experimental Prog-Related Metal
Weezer - OK Human 2021
 22 days ago
9.2
Prog-Related Independent
Star One - Revel In Time 2022
 22 days ago
8.4
Prog Metal
Paul Gilbert - Vibrato 2012
 22 days ago
8.7
Non-Prog Rock
Paul Gilbert - Vibrato 2012
 22 days ago
8.7
Non-Prog Rock
Paul Gilbert - Behold Electric Guitar 2019
 22 days ago
8.7
Instrumental Non-Prog Rock
Pink Floyd - Animals 1977
 23 days ago
8.7
English/British Epic Experimental Prog Rock
Kaprekar's Constant - The Murder Wall 2022
 24 days ago
8.5
Prog Rock
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