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Star One: Live on Earth

Arjen Anthony Lucassen certainly keeps himself busy these days between Aryeon, Star One, and the many guest spots on other progressive rock/metal albums. Star One is now his vehicle for heavier, progressive metal music, as opposed to more varied and proggy material that he covers with Aryeon. Live on Earth is an all-star event covering almost the entire studio album Star One, plus a bunch of tunes from all the earlier Ayreon albums, especially The Dream Sequencerand Flight of the Migrator .

Lucassen and his superb cast of Ed Warby on drums, Peter Vink on bass, Joost Ven Den Broek on keyboards, and Ewa Albering on flute, perform impeccably on this 2 CD set. The guitar work of Lucassen's is crunchy and fluid, never bordering on shred, but always tasty and perfectly fitting each piece. The staff of vocalists is like a prog-rock-opera dream come true: Damian Wilson (ex-Threshold & Landmarq), Russell Allen (Symphony X), Robert Soeterboek (Ayreon), Floor Jansen (After Forever), and Irene Jansen, who all contribute mightily. Some of the highlights; the metal bombast of "Dawn of a Million Souls", led by Lucassen's heavy guitar riffs and Allen's histrionic vocals; the guitar/keyboard duels on the instrumental "Amazing Flight in Space"; the majestic prog opus "Songs of the Ocean" featuring the amazing Damien Wilson; and the killer 1-2 punch of "Lift Off/Set Your Controls." This is space-metal the way it should be played-loud guitars, wild keys, and multi-layered vocals.

Also available as a 2CD + DVD set, which really packs some extra enjoyment to this already stacked live set. This is highly recommeded to all prog-metal fans. Mr. Lucassen is a true visionary, as his ability to write catchy songs with prog complexity and metal power, combined with assembling a non-stop roster of all-star talent to help act out his musical fantasies, continues.

Added: March 29th 2005
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: InsideOut Music America
Hits: 2717
Language: english

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Star One: Live on Earth
Posted by Ken Pierce, SoT Staff Writer on 2005-03-29 21:50:35
My Score:

The first time I had heard Space Metal, by Star One I was totally floored. This masterwork was created by Arjen Anthony Lucassen whom Progressive Metal fans know well for his work from his creation Aryeon. This double CD/DVD package immortalizes the final show of the tour from the album Space Metal. Fans of the release of the studio record will be glad that he decided to do this. He also created 2 separate releases of this album (the copy I am reviewing includes the DVD and is considered the special edition).

While the music will certainly impress you, the video footage is nothing more than a couple of cameras placed selectively in the venue to give you a straight concert shoot. There are limited special effects but you do get nice clean shots of the varied performers he has in the touring company for the concert. Most of it is shot from far away so that does tend to take away of the full enjoyment of the visuals. His touring company is an
excellent one comprised of the following talented individuals: Russell Allen (Symphony X) and Damian Wilson on vocals along with Floor Jansen (After Forever). Robert Soeterboek and Irene Jansen also do some of the singing. Ed Warby (Drums), Peter Vink (Bass) and Joost Van Den Broek (Keyboards). The whole piece is tied together by the multi-instrumentalist Lucassen who plays Guitars, Synths and provides an additional vocal presence.

The DVD is only different in the inclusion of a couple of solos which are not present on the audio CD. Fans of Ayreon will especially enjoy this, for the piece includes a couple of the numbers he has released in that project as well. As a whole this concert release works to deliver you some solid Progressive Metal by someone who is considered the leader in this field. Favorites of mine are "Set Your Controls", "Songs Of The Ocean" and
"Intergalactic Space Crusaders". This is a must by for fans of the genre or Arjen himself, and it does not disappoint. There is also a decent booklet in the deluxe package which I would purchase if I were you. You might as well have the entire experience.

Track Listing (CD1 & CD2):

1. Lift Off
2. Set Your Controls
3. High Moon
4. Dreamtime
5. Eyes Of Time
6. Songs Of The Ocean
7. Dawn Of A Million Souls
8. The Dream Sequencer
9. Into The Black Hole
10. Actual Fantasy
11. Valley Of The Queens
12. Isis And Osiris
13. Amazing Flight In Space
14. Intergalactic Space Crusaders
15. Castle Hall
16. The Eye Of Ra
17. Starchild
18. The Two Gates

2004 Sea Of Tranquility
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