A Live Song from Within Temptation

Sharon den AdelI don’t usually feature live songs on Musical Interlude, because frankly there are very few artists who sound as good live as they do in the studio. But we’ll make an exception to that rule (“It’s more like guidelines, really”) and feature a song from an acoustic concert given by a Heavy Metal band.

Within Temptation was started by vocalist Sharon den Adel and guitarist Robert Westerholt, playing guitar and doing “unclean vocals,” though he only does studio work these days, he does not tour generally, though he does perform on this song. The band now includes Jeroen van Veen on bass, Ruud Jolie as lead guitar, Martijn Spierenburg playing keyboards, Mike Coolen on drums and Stefan Helleblad playing both rhythm and lead guitars.

This song is “The Cross” by Within Temptation from their 2009 album An Acoustic Night at the Theatre. It was recorded in November 2008 at Muziekcentrum Frits Philips in Eindhoven, which is a city in The Netherlands. Lyrics are at this link.

A Memorial Day Musical Interlude

I thought something different was in order for today. A video that is a tribute to America’s fallen.

You’ve heard music by John Williams. He wrote the soundtracks for Star Wars, Indiana Jones, the first 3 Harry Potter movies, Saving Private Ryan, and a host of other movies.

This is “Hymn to the Fallen” by John Williams, but really watching the video, and not just listening is worth the six minutes of your time.

Beautiful One

Mot Monday. Not Metal. Anneke van Giersbergen is a Dutch singer mostly known for Heavy Metal. (Don’t worry, ENGLISH lyrics ahead.) She was lead vocalist for The Gathering for years, and lately she has VUUR, also Heavy Metal. But with a voice like hers, you don’t always sing hard rock, and her solo work is not all Heavy Metal.

This song is “Beautiful One” by Anneke van Giersbergen and her solo project band (formerly Agua de Annique) with vocals by Niels Geusebroek. It is from the 2009 album Pure Air.

Eye of Ra

What do you get if you cross Rick Wakeman’s progressive rock with Heavy Metal? Well, you might just get Arjen Anthony Lucassen’s Star One. I tripped over them because Anneke van Giersbergen did some work with Lucassen on a different project. Floor Jansen, of Nightwish and After Forever, is (was?) a member.

This song is “Eye of Ra” by Star One from their 2002 debut album Space Metal.

Paint It Black

“Paint It Black” was originally by the Rolling Stones. It was a single and it was included on their 1966 album Aftermath, but that isn’t the version we have here today. Today we have an Epic Music cover of that song.

Epic music mostly shows up in trailers for movies, as well as the movies themselves, and TV shows. Covers of known songs are mostly in the trailers, because aside from Tarantino, most movies have specially composed scores. I always say it sounds like an action movie is going on in the next room. It isn’t like my life is an action movie, after all, so the action isn’t happening in this room.

This is “Paint It Black (Epic Trailer Version)” by Hidden Citizens from their 2019 album Reawakenings Vol. 2.

Trick of the Tail

So my mind has been much on Progressive Rock lately. I’ve tripped over some new music (by way of the blogroll.) You can find it if you search back through the “Musical Interlude” category. (See the link below this post.) Which has me going back over some older music.

Genesis was one of the principle Progressive Rock bands of the early 1970s. Culminating in the concept album, The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway. After which, Peter Gabriel left the group to pursue his solo career. Phil Collins stepped up from drummer to lead vocalist. The first album they produced was Trick of the Tail. It mostly stayed true to their progressive roots, but they would move in a more pop direction after Gabriel left. I won’t say we are all the poorer for it, because Peter Gabriel still produced some great music. For a while.

This song is “Trick of the Tail” by Genesis from the 1976 album of the same name.

Valley of Diamonds – Mexico City

Anneke van GiersbergenMore Heavy Metal that has no touch of the Death Metal Death Growl? Sure.

As I mentioned in January, I really like Anneke van Giersbergen’s voice. While I don’t always like her music, some of it is outstanding.

This song is “Valley of Diamonds – Mexico City” by VUUR from their 2017 album In This Moment We Are Free – Cities.

Heroes

I’m not really sure how to describe this song. Till Lindemann, of Rammstein, doing the singing makes me think of hard rock, and AllMusic describes Apocalyptica as Symphonic Metal, but that never really set well with me. There is a drummer, but no screaming guitars. Just 3 cellos doesn’t seem quite metal to me. Anyway, after getting started doing covers of Metallica songs, they have branched out, with other covers and original material as well.

Lyrics for today’s selection, and their translation, can be found at this link.

This is “Helden” by Apocalyptica featuring vocals by Till Lindemann from Rammstein. It is a German cover of the song “Heroes” by David Bowie. It was included on Apocalyptica’s 2007 album Worlds Collide.

A Yonder & Home Musical Interlude

A memoir of discovering classical music. By way of social media.. Yonder & Home gives us A Philistine Ponders the Symphony.

Like many others, my gateway drug to classical music acceptance was the symphonic arrangements of movie scores. My own over-active imagination was always scored by John Williams, as my daydreams required the most epic of musical accompaniment. The Raiders of the Lost Ark arrangement was amazing to me.

There are 2 pieces at the link. Each about 10 minutes long. First there is “Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 4 (Movement II)” Fakhouri Conducting the Fayetteville Symphony Orchestra. Second is “New World Symphony Part 3” by Dvorak, Andris Nelsons conducting the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.

As for the social media… who could turn this down?

What happens when the hillbilly who grew up in the middle of Eastcoast v Westcoast 90s hiphop, cuts his grass to metal, writes to EDM, cooks to jazz, and can sing you about every Johnny Cash song wanders into the symphony?

Take Ten

The Wiki says that Paul Desmond is “best known” for being part of Dave Brubeck’s band. And I suppose that is fair, but he was a bandleader in his own right as well, and his music shows up in some of the jazz playlists I get from Pandora. This song is a tip of the hat to work he did with Brubeck, Brubeck’s iconic “Take Five.” (Which for some reason, I haven’t featured as a musical interlude.) And actually Desmond wrote “Take Five,” so its fair if he wants to riff on it.

This is “Take Ten” by Paul Desmond. It was originally released on his 1963 album Take Ten. This version is from his 1974 album Skylark.

Sober

“Why can’t we not be sober?”

Tool doesn’t play well with the tiny minds in the American Music industry. They’ve been censored any number of times, and they insist on privacy. For that relationship alone I could love them. But I do like a lot of their music, which is usually categorized as Alternative Metal.

Tool released an album at the end of August, 2019, Fear Inoculum. As a result of that release, I’ve been revisiting songs, which I liked, but haven’t listened to in a while.

This song is “Sober” by Tool from their 1993 album Undertow. It was the first single released from that album and reached number 13 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock chart. You can find the lyrics at this link. It deals with the issue of how an addiction can destroy the people around the addict.

Lately YT has been playing nicely with my browser’s privacy settings, but if that changes, use the link provided.

Prism

We haven’t had anything from Lindsey Stirling in a while. I really enjoy her music. I can never decide how to describe her music. A bit of electronica. The violin doesn’t make it quite classical. Occasionally it has a pop sensibility. I love the instrumental stuff in the evening, as there are no lyrics to distract from what I am reading, but it is still worth listening to.

This song is “Prism” by Lindsey Stirling from her 2016 album Brave Enough.

A Bacon Time Musical Interlude

Bacon Time!!!! brings us “Who Are You” from The Who. The “Promo Video” version.

This album for me was really the last of the great Who albums. No knock on Kenny Jones, but he ain’t no Keith Moon. The Who was a group where the sum of the parts was far greater than the whole and without one part, there really was no whole.

Enjoy.

A Taste of Honey

Some more smooth jazz is in order. And not something new, but a something from the 1960s, I think.

A Taste of Honey was a stage play, and then a movie in the late 1950s, early 1960s. This song was written for the Broadway version, and included in the movie. It was then recorded by Herb Alpert, and has been covered many times. It has become a ‘standard.’

This is “A Taste of Honey” by Paul Desmond from his 1964 album Glad To Be Unhappy,which is listed as “Featuring Jim Hall.” Jim Hall is the guitar player, and what a talent he had.

Paul Desmond was a saxophone player best known as a member of the Dave Brubeck Quartet. And in putting this post together, I learned that he wrote “Take Five,” the song from Dave Brubeck & Co. that you probably know. I had featured “Take Five” at the Archives, but that link is broken. Another day perhaps.

Leaves

Anneke van GiersbergenAnneke van Giersbergen is another woman from The Netherlands singing Symphonic Metal. For many years she was lead singer for the The Gathering, but they parted company about 10 years ago, or more. She has a solo career and she recently founded a new band (VUUR) which we have sampled, and will get back to in the future.

And although she is singing in English, here’s a link to the lyrics. It is Metal, after all.

This is “Leaves” by The Gathering, from their 1995 album Mandylion. It was their first album to feature Anneke van Giersbergen as lead vocalist.

Zombie

“Zombie” was originally a song by The Cranberries. But today we have more Epic Music in the form of a cover of that song by Damned Anthem.

From the Damned Anthem website:

Damned Anthem… a collision of two musicians and lifelong comrades Adam Dearborn and James Norman aka DV9. Both hailing from respective national acts, hard rock (Something to Burn) and Industrial bad boys (Deadstar Assembly), the idea of working together to create a cinematic sonic tension that would combine their love for distorted guitars mashed up with orchestration and sound design actually came to fruition organically.

This song is “Zombie” by Damned Anthem. It is a track off their December, 2018 album, Uncovered.

I think I really need to cut down on the number of action movies I’m watching during quarantine….

RIP Bill Withers

There has been so much news about COVID-19 and the Stalinist-attempts to overturn the Constitution, that I missed this bit of sad news. Bill Withers passed away on March 30th. And so we have 2 songs today.

His music was occasionally on the radio, back in the day, and then he walked away.

He got fed up with the tiny minds running the music industry, and didn’t sign another controact after his contract expired in 1985. Rolling Stone had this to say in 2015 – Bill Withers: The Soul Man Who Walked Away.

A few years after “Two of Us,” Withers became one of the few stars in pop-music history to truly walk away from a lucrative career, entirely of his own volition, and never look back. “These days,” he says, “I wouldn’t know a pop chart from a Pop-Tart.”

Image versus music. Suits who think they know music, and prove they don’t on a regular basis. For that alone I would love him, but his work, what there is of it, if first rate.

This song is “Ain’t No Sunshine” by Bill Withers from the 1971 album Just As I Am. That is probably the song most of you know by Bill Withers, but it isn’t my favorite. See the 2nd song, below, for one I like even more.

This song is “Use Me” by Bill Withers from the 1972 album Still Bill. I won’t say this is my favorite Bill Withers’ song, that would be hard to pick, but I do like it quite a lot.

This quote from that Rolling Stone article sums up my thoughts on a lot of what is going on today, even in the genres I listen to…

“I grew up in the age of Barbra Streisand, Aretha Franklin, Nancy Wilson,” he says, still musing on the Grammys. “It was a time where a fat, ugly broad that could sing had value. Now everything is about image. It’s not poetry. This just isn’t my time.”

Endlessly

More Amaranthe? Why not. Here’s a ballad.

Elize Ryd was a subject of post over at The Daley Gator after I posted a song by Amaranthe for Metal for Monday a while back. So here is more Amaranthe, with a song that is mostly the soaring voice of Elize Ryd. (Enough guitars and drums for Heavy Metal, even if there are violins as well.)

This song is “Endlessly” by Amaranthe from their 2016 album Maximalism. And while this is a ballad, it is off a Heavy Metal album, by one of my favorite Heavy Metal groups. Deal with it. It is the kind of song that makes the head of those American music suits, with their tiny minds, explode. (You mean all metal isn’t thrash?)

OK my original post and the Daley Gator post was a LONG while back. This post was written back then, and kept getting pushed. I’m not exactly sure why that was now…