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Ian Sutherland

ian sutherland

alan parsons

Alan Parsons started his long and distinguished career in music as an engineer at Abbey Road studios and famously worked on Pink Floyd's legendary 'Dark Side Of The Moon' album.

Inspired to create his own kind of complex yet personal music he has released a string of hugely successful albums under the moniker of The Alan Parsons Project starting with 'Tales Of Mystery And Imagination' in 1976.

In 2013 the Medellin Philharmonic Orchestra joined the current version of the Parsons Project at a live open air show in their city and now for the first time this collaboration is available through earMusic as a DVD, Blu-ray, 2-CD digipak, 3 x Vinyl, and download under the title 'Live In Colombia'.

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It's been a forty three year journey for Alan Parsons to finally get to play with the sweeping grandeur of an orchestra on a live release and there was even a delay of three years between the show being recorded and this release. I have delayed things even further by not getting my review copy until now, several weeks after release but for anyone interested in the quality work from this guy I can finally confirm it is really worth investigating.

The line up for this tour included Project regulars PJ Olsson on vocals Alastair Greene on guitar and vocals and Todd Cooper on saxophone ,guitar and vocals. The vocals part is important to emphasise as along with the main man himself they all take turns singing lead and all have huge impacts on the songs concerned.

The musicianship is superb throughout of course and you can tell that some real thought has gone into the arrangements too, so that they make full use of having that orchestra behind them. This is particularly evident when, in classic vinyl terminology the whole of the second side of the 'Turn Of A Friendly Card' is performed consecutively bringing the audience to their feet in appreciation at the climax.

It's not the only time that the audience are up on their feet as despite much of the material being thoughtful and restrained in nature this is South America after all! At the more uptempo moments such as the lush instrumental 'Luciferama' they are pleased to be up and sharing their energy with the band.

The set list will be important to any Parsons aficionados and a real spread of material is here including something from almost all the band's albums. The fact that real quality songs like 'The Raven' and 'Don't Answer Me' are thrown in so early in the set shows the depth of songs available to them and the final run of the main set 'Silence And I/Prime Time/Sirius/Eye In The Sky/Old And Wise' really shows how true that is. Olsson's vocals on the two ballads book ending that run are simply tremendous as is Todd Cooper's saxophone solo in the climactic finale.

The music in this release is excellent although the recording somehow makes it feel under powered somehow at times. Watching it purely as a DVD like I did it's not the most exciting event to watch either as there is no real stageshow to speak of. These are minor drawbacks though, I think this is a real treat for any fans of the man and an interesting way in to the back catalogue for any newbies. Check it out either way.

Track List 1. I Robot // 2. Damned If I Do // 3. Don’t Answer Me // 4. Breakdown // 5. The Raven // 6. Time // 7. I Wouldn’t Want To Be Like You // 8. La Sagrada Familia // 9. The Turn Of A Friendly Card (Part One) // 10. Snake Eyes // 11. The Ace Of Swords // 12. Nothing Left To Lose // 13. The Turn Of A Friendly Card (Part Two) // 14. What Goes Up // 15. Luciferama // 16.Silence And I // 17. Prime Time // 18. Sirius // 19. Eye In The Sky // 20. Old And Wise // 21. Games People Play

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Wacken Winter Nights 2018 takes place between February 23rd and 25th 2018 and the great news is that you can now experience a full-on, top class German Metal Festival easily and affordably.

It only takes an hour to fly to Hamburg from London and we've had longer journeys than that within the capital and they were certainly more expensive than the £33 air ticket that just appeared in our 'flights to Wacken Winter Nights' search.


Wacken Winter Nights is organised by the same team who are responsible for the world's greatest Metal festival, Wacken-Open-Air and the 2018 bill includes Skyclad, Orphaned Land, Elvenking, Finntroll, Grave Digger, Aeverium, Comes Vagantes, Coppelius, Corvus Corax, Die Pressgëng, Elvellon, Heimataerde, Hell-O-Matic, Ignis Fatuu, Ingrimm, Irdorath, Johnny Deathshadow, Krayenzeit, Letzte Instanz, Mr Hurley und die Pulveraffen, Pampatut, Pat Razket, Schandmaul, Sündenrausch, The Aberlour's, The Moon And The Nightspirit, Torfrock, Visions Of Atlantis, Vroudenspil, Wind Rose and more.

Besides this rich billing of superb Metal bands, there is so much more to see in the festival area including the medieval market and also the walking acts and jugglers you will meet at the theme worlds, including Robert Blake, three-time World Cup winner of street magic.

Wacken Winter Nights is something not to be missed and you can check out the amazing ticket and accommodation prices right here.

We just priced up the whole four day trip with hotels, flights, shuttles and festival tickets for less than £300 and we don't think you will get a better value festival than that, anywhere.


MetalTalk recently sat down with Wacken founder and owner Thomas Jensen and that interview will be online next week and it's a fascinating insight into how Wacken originated from nothing to become the world's premiere Heavy Metal event.


Wacken 2018 takes place from 2nd to 4th August 20218 and as with Wacken Winter Nights, if you have never experienced all it has to offer, then you owe it to yourself to remedy that.

Already announced for Wacken 2018 are Judas Priest, Nightwish, Running Wild (exclusive), Arch Enemy, Dirkschneider, Doro (Special Anniversary Show), In Extremo, Sepultura, Amorphis, Amaranthe, Firewind, W.A.R., Belphegor, Mantar, Knorkator, Deserted Fear, Watain, Night Demon, Epica, Knorkator, Belphegor, Firewind, Deserted Fear and many more and we'll have more Wacken 2018 announcements during December.

As well as being the greatest Heavy Metal festival in the world, it is without a doubt the Mecca of Metal and the one thing that every single person who loves our music should have on their bucket list.

For 2018, MetalTalk have joined forces with Wacken-Open-Air to help you get to Wacken easily and inexpensively and you can peruse the ticket and travel options right here.

If you are interested in going to Wacken 2018 and have questions, please fill out the form below and we will contact you with answers to all your enquiries. You are under no obligation whatsoever by filling this form out. We won't add you to any mailing lists or send you loads of spam - all we will do is help you get to Wacken as easily and inexpensively as possible.



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