Between A Rock And A Prog Place: OU's Anthony Vanacore: "We Are All In Beijing, China"

May 31, 2024, a month ago

By Greg Prato

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Between A Rock And A Prog Place: OU's Anthony Vanacore: "We Are All In Beijing, China"

What truly is progressive music? Each month BraveWords will aim to dissect that answer with a thorough overview of the current musical climate that is the prog world. Old and new, borrowed and blue. A musical community without borders. So watch for a steady and spaced-out array of features, current news and a buyer's guide checklist to enhance the forward-thinking musical mind. So, welcome to BraveWords' monthly column appropriately titled, Between A Rock In A Prog Place. 

In this month's column, OU drummer Anthony Vanacore discusses his band's latest album, 蘇醒 II: Frailty and the obvious reason how Devin Townsend wound up working on it, what it's like being a China-based prog band, and the meaning behind their single/video, "Frailty." 

Is all of the band based in China?

"Yes, we are all in Beijing, China."

Is there a prog rock scene in China? If so, who are some standout artists?

"It’s a small scene. There is one band I know of that’s really great called Von Citizen."

How did the band cross paths with Devin Townsend?

"The head of Inside Out, Thomas Waber, put us in contact with Devin. He is also an Inside Out artist."

What was Devin’s role in the creation of the 蘇醒 II: Frailty?

"He mixed and co-produced it, and did a hell of job!"

What is the lyrical inspiration behind the track "蘇醒Frailty” and memories of shooting the song’s video?

"That is a better question for Lynn, the singer, because she wrote all the lyrics. But I’ve heard her say some of the lyrical content comes from ideas behind plants and life, the circular process of growth and decline."

What are the band’s touring plans in support of the album?

"We hope to start touring in 2025." 

What do you think of the current state of prog?

"I think there’s a lot of cool things happening! The genre keeps growing. I would recommend to check out many of the other bands on Inside Out, they are all some of the leading bands in the progressive genre."

Between A Rock And A Prog Place News Blast

Dream Theater has announced a 40th anniversary tour which will run from 2024-2025, for which the European leg launches on October 20th and runs for over a month, with tickets and VIP packages available via the band's site. German prog metal vets Vanden Plas recently issued their latest album, The Empyrean Equation of the Long Lost Things, and have issued a video for the track 'My Icarian Flight,' which can be enjoyed below.

Symphonic metallists Rhapsody of Fire have just issued their latest LP, Challenge the Wind, which can be obtained via this link. Norwegian prog metallists Rendezvous Point will be issuing their third full-length overall on June 21st, Dream Chaser, which is indeed available for pre-order

Described as "progressive French thrashers," Arcania will be issuing their third album overall, Lost Generation, on September 24th, but have already issued a video for the first single, "What Will Remain," which can be seen below. German symphonic metallists Elvellon recently issued their latest album, Ascending in Synergy, which is ready to be ordered.

Swedish prog rockers Quantum have issued their latest studio effort, Down The Mountainside, which you can enjoy/order. Prog metal vets Evergrey will be returning on June 7th with their new album, Theories Of Emptiness, which is indeed available for pre-order.

May 2024 New Albums

May 3
Wheel: Charismatic Leaders 

May 10
John Entwistle: The Ox Box Set (6CD box)
Peter Gabriel: Back to Front- Live in London (Blu-ray)
The Tangent: To Follow Polaris

May 17
Elvellon: Ascending in Synergy 
Karfagen: Land of Chameleons
Pink Floyd: Animals (2018 Remix: Dolby Atmos, Blu-ray/digital)  

May 24
Rainbow: Boston 1981
Yes: Talk (expanded 4CD anniversary reissue)

May 31
Rhapsody of Fire: Challenge the Wind
Squackett [Chris Squire and Steve Hackett]: A Life Within a Day (CD and Blu-ray reissue)

Classic Clip

Since the 2018 remix of Pink Floyd's classic 1977 offering, Animals, is being issued this month in both Blu-ray and digital forms, how about we inspect some audience-shot 8mm footage from the tour in support of said album?

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