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User Page: Mike

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Joined 17 years ago
Last Visit 15 hours ago
Ratings Submitted 1809
Main Genres Set 2411
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 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 11 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!
Comment by Mike 11 years ago
Steve Vai - The Story of Light 2012
8.4
Non-Prog Rock
Nice - but not as great as Vai's truly classic albums of the 1990s. If you're a fan not only of Vai, but of nice guitar music in general - go for it, but it's not as bold and "out there" as his masterpieces of old.
Comment by Mike 11 years ago
Cake - Fashion Nugget 1996
8.8
Non-Prog Rock/Independent
This is my favorite Cake album - a timeless classic, as far as I'm concerned. Great music, about as dry and spartan as you can get, with great humor and a lot of class. Fuzzy dice like testicles and breasts bouncing on sofas meet Frank Sinatra ...
Review by Mike 12 years ago <Permalink>
Jack Dupon - Démon Hardï 2010
8.5
Eclectic Prog Rock
This album presented me with quite a challenge - it's kind of dark-ish, but not quite. I settled for a combination of playful and eerie, which makes for quite a team. Add to that the element of improvisation, the eclectic mix of styles, the exalted vocals on some of the tracks - excellent!
Review by Mike 12 years ago <Permalink>
Dream Theater - A Dramatic Turn Of Events 2011
8.5
Prog Metal
 So far I've listened to the album three times, and while it is admittedly nice, I think it's one of the weaker DT albums. It's still quite good, but the words "haphazard" and "forced" pop up a bit too often in my mind when I'm listening to the album, particularly in the opening track. Mike Mangini is a great musician, but on this album the drums strike me as largely unimaginative compared to Portnoy's style. Of course one could also say that Mangini simply chooses to stay in the background and let the other band members shine (which definitely plays out well in that regard, particularly with Myung and LaBrie), and indeed I think that there's great potential for a truly great next album that hopefully won' t be recorded under such unfortunate circumstances. The bottom line: a solid album, but ultimately falling short in terms of songwriting and inspired playing (don't get me wrong, there are plenty of inspired moments, it's just lacking compared to other DT releases) and thus a transitional step for the band, pretty much like Feel Euphoria was for Spock's Beard - at least that's my wish(ful thinking).
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Comment by Mike 12 years ago
Franck Carducci - Oddity 2011
8.4
Eclectic Prog Rock
I really enjoyed listening to this album. It's a well balanced mix of styles, mostly laid back, with a few odd breaks and time signatures thrown in, but more often than not on the lighter side of things as far experimentation is concerned, but nevertheless with solid songwriting and progressive tendencies throughout.
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Comment by Mike 13 years ago
The Orb - Metallic Spheres (featuring David Gilmour) 2010
8.7
Instrumental Prog Rock/Electronic
Nice! Two long tracks, some crazy segues, huge grooves with lush instrumentation, and Gilmour's leads blend in nicely.
Comment by Mike 13 years ago
In Mourning - Monolith 2010
8.6
Eclectic Prog Extreme Metal
This actually isn't too progressive - the tracks have somewhat conventional structure, but they also feature the occasional extreme outburst (think Meshuggah or Opeth). All in all: A nicely done album!
Comment by Mike 13 years ago
The Dillinger Escape Plan - Option Paralysis 2010
8.5
Technical Prog Extreme Metal
I like the album - I guess you could say that it's "more of the same", but nicely done anyway. Listened to it the other day after the latest Elvis Costello album and thought: This is like the sonic version of contrast showering ...
Comment by Mike 14 years ago
Led Zeppelin - Mothership 2007, Best Of
9.1
Non-Prog Hard Rock
Every Led Zeppelin fan should get this release ... the sound quality is amazing.
Comment by Mike 14 years ago
Sylvan - Force Of Gravity 2009
6.5
Neo Prog Rock
I really don't like this album ... at all. I loved Posthumous Silence and as far as overall style, musicianship and production are concerned this is just as good, but the sub-par songwriting combined with the overly theatralic/emotional singing ruin it for me.
Comment by Mike 14 years ago
Outre Mesure - Abacadae 2009
8.8
Instrumental Prog Rock/Fusion
I really enjoyed listening to this album ... it's Avant-Garde music walking the fine line between Jazz and Rock, with much improvisation in it, very dynamic and not too easy to listen to if you're not used to it ... but it's also quite playful and not as gloomy as many other Avant-Prog albums that I've listened to lately.
Comment by Mike 14 years ago
Bohren & der Club of Gore - Dolores 2008
8.8
Instrumental Minimalistic Prog Post Rock/Jazz
Slow. Really Slow. Really, *Really* Slow. Very sparse ... the band set out a decade earlier to make Doom Metal music without guitars, and they've certainly come a long way. This isn't metal at all ... there aren't any guitars, and apart from the occasional crunchy jazz organ sound there isn't any distortion either. This is essentially very tasty, melodic Jazz music played very slowly over regular, but very minimalistic rock patterns. Confused? Give it a spin, listen for yourself!
Comment by Mike 14 years ago
Kristeen Young - Music for Strippers, Hookers, and the Odd On-Looker 2009
9.1
Avant-Garde Prog-Related Rock/Independent
What a voice! No, that wouldn't do this album justice ... the voice is magnificent, but the piano is even more prominent - and she's really taking it to the extreme. At first you might think "Tori Amos", but the music is actually quite different - definitely more aggressive (at least on this album) and more focused.
Comment by Mike 14 years ago
Joe Bonamassa - The Ballad of John Henry 2009
9.1
Non-Prog Blues
A really, really good blues album. Some covers, some original compositions ... great musicianship throughout, not just in the guitar department.
Comment by Mike 14 years ago
Heart of CygnusListen - Over Mountain, Under Hill 2009
8.9
Eclectic Prog Rock/Metal
Wow ... just wow *big grin*. Listen to this magnificent album, you just *have* to.
Comment by Mike 14 years ago
Beyond Twilight - Section X 2005
8.9
Experimental Prog Metal
I just listened to this again after quite some time (several years) and again it blew me away. If I had to say something negative about the album is that it occasionally gets a little bit cheesy story-wise ... but I don't mind at all. The songwriting is awesome, the musicianship flawless ... as is the production. If you're a fan of complex metal ... wrap your ears around this!
Comment by Mike 14 years ago
Queens of the Stone Age - Era Vulgaris 2007
9.0
Minimalistic Non-Prog Rock
I really love the QotSA style ... some people prefer Kyuss (the de facto predecessor) because of the more epic/psychedelic/improvisational style, but QotSA make up for that with magnificent songwriting and a really cool and fresh approach in terms of harmonic structure and weird instrumentation. Add to that a good dose of humor ... not so much in the sense of comedy, but as far as witty/"naughty" lyrics are concerned.
Statistics
Charts
Albums
Artists
2022
All
|
Studio
Live
DVD
EP
All
Favorite LPs of 2022
1
2
...
14
1-20 of 278  
Porcupine Tree - CLOSURE / CONTINUATION
 #1
9.2
Avant-Garde Prog Rock
Charile Griffiths - Tiktaalika
 #2
9.0
Prog Metal
Pure Reason Revolution - Above Cirrus
 #3
9.0
Prog Metal
Big Big Train - Welcome To The Planet
 #4
9.0
Symphonic Prog Rock
Black Midi - Hellfire
 #5
8.9
Prog Rock in Opposition/Independent
Ghost - Impera
 #6
8.9
Epic Non-Prog Metal/Rock
Ashenspire - Hostile Architecture
 #7
8.8
Prog Post Extreme Metal
The Dear Hunter - Antimai
 #8
8.8
Prog Rock
Pattern-Seeking Animals - Only Passing Through
 #11
8.8
Eclectic Prog Rock
Oceans Of Slumber - Starlight and Ash
 #13
8.6
Prog-Related Rock
Derek Sherinian - Vortex
 #14
8.6
Prog Jazz/Rock
The Michael Schenker Group - Universal
 #15
8.6
Neo Classical Non-Prog Metal
Playgrounded - The Death of Death
 #16
8.5
Prog Post Metal
Motorpsycho - Ancient Astronauts
 #17
8.5
Prog Post Rock/Metal
Cult of Luna - The Long Road North
 #18
8.5
Prog Metal
Kaprekar's Constant - The Murder Wall
 #19
8.5
Prog Rock
Star One - Revel In Time
 #20
8.4
Prog Metal
Playlist
1
2
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131
1-20 of 2613  
Swans - Love of Life 1992
 one hour ago
7.8
Prog-Related Independent
Ulver - Scary Muzak 2021
 22 hours ago
Wave
Blind Guardian - Nightfall in Middle-Earth 1998
 22 hours ago
9.3
Orchestral Prog Power Metal
Between The Buried And Me - Coma Ecliptic 2015
 23 hours ago
9.0
Prog Metal
Ulver - Scary Muzak 2021
 2 days ago
Wave
Weezer - SZNZ: Autumn 2022
 3 days ago
7.5
Prog-Related Rock
Witherscape - The Northern Sanctuary 2016
 4 days ago
8.8
Heavy Prog Metal
Anathema - The Optimist 2017
 4 days ago
Anathema - We're Here Because We're Here 2010
 4 days ago
8.9
English/British Atmospheric Prog Rock
Charile Griffiths - Tiktaalika 2022
 4 days ago
9.0
Prog Metal
Pink Floyd - The Dark Side of the Moon 1973
 11 days ago
9.8
English/British Minimalistic Experimental Prog Rock
Blind Guardian - Nightfall in Middle-Earth 1998
 11 days ago
9.3
Orchestral Prog Power Metal
Blind Guardian - Nightfall in Middle-Earth 1998
 11 days ago
9.3
Orchestral Prog Power Metal
Pagan's Mind - Enigmatic: Calling 2005
 11 days ago
8.7
Prog Power Metal
Noekk - The Water Sprite 2005
 12 days ago
8.2
Eclectic Prog Post Rock
Tool - Lateralus 2001
 12 days ago
8.9
Experimental Prog Metal
Steven Wilson - Insurgentes 2009
 13 days ago
8.8
Prog
Symphony X - V: The New Mythology Suite 2001
 13 days ago
9.7
Technical Neo Classical Prog Power Metal
Steven Wilson - Insurgentes 2009
 13 days ago
8.8
Prog
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