27. Arjen Anthony Lucassen – Lost in the New Real
Arjen Lucassen is the mastermind behind tons of prog-rock projects that I love: Star One, Ambeon, Guilt Machine, Stream of Passion, and most importantly, Ayreon. He has an incredible range of aptitude across musical genres, and this solo effort (his first since 1994) puts that aptitude to the test. It’s a double album, in which the first disc tells the story of a Rip Van Winkle-like man from the 21st century revived in the future, and his process in therapy to come to terms with his new reality. The 2nd album is all cover songs. What I have linked is one of my favorite tracks of the year – Arjen’s cover of Led Zepplin’s “Battle of Evermore.” In it, he uses some “When the Levee Breaks” style drums and some haunting female vocals and dulcimer playing from an unknown Dutch musician (Arjen has always been so good at finding obscure musicians and using them to extraordinary ends). Mostly this album is a diverse couple of hours of songwriting that I find comfortably familiar. It’s a decent holdover until the next Ayreon album.
Originally Posted by Delano
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