Genesis' Steve Hackett, Spock's Beard and Flower Kings headline two-day prog-rock festival

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Spock’s Beard, Saga, Flower Kings and Steve Hackett will close out the seventh annual Night of the Prog festival, to be held over two days this summer in Germany.

Spock’s, which was co-founded by guitarist Alan Morse and bassist Dave Meros in 1992, added Enchant vocalist Ted Leonard and former touring drummer Jimmy Keegan back in November. (Former members also include singer/drummer Nick D’Virgilio, who left last year; and lead singer/keyboardist Neal Morse, who left in ’02.) The group is also set to release its 11th studio recording this summer. Saga, which has sold more than 8 million records on the strength of hits like 1983’s “On the Loose,” announced last year the return of co-founding singer Michael Sadler.

[SOMETHING ELSE! REWIND: The debut Squackett collaboration with Genesis alum Steve Hackett finds Yes co-founder Chris Squire playing with an uncommon joy.]

The Swedish proggers Flower Kings were founded by guitarist Roine Stolt in 1994, and have released 11 album since. Steve Hackett, a member of Genesis from 1971’s Nursery Cryme through 1977’s Wind and Wuthering, recently released a well-received collaboration with Yes co-founder Chris Squire called Squackett.

The Night Of The Prog festival will be held held July 7-8 at the Amphitheater St. Goarshausen in Sankt Goarshausen, Germany. For more on the event, go here: http://www.facebook.com/NightOfTheProg?ref=ts

Here is the complete schedule for the festival:

Saturday, July 7th
11:30: Doors open
Noon: HASSE FRÖBERG & THE MUSICAL COMPANION
1:15: ENOCHIAN THEORY
2:45: AIRBAG
3:30: SYLVAN
6:10: ARENA
8: SPOCK’S BEARD
10: SAGA
11:30: End

Sunday, July 8th
11:30: Doors open
Noon: FREQUENCY DRIFT
1:30: LAZULI
3:30: HAKEN
5:10: THE FLOWER KINGS
7: KATATONIA
9: STEVE HACKETT
11: End

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Here’s a look back at our recent thoughts on Steve Hackett and Spock’s Beard Click through the titles for complete reviews …

SQUACKETT – A LIFE WITHIN ONE DAY (2012): A sun-filled, surprisingly light-hearted experience, this collaboration between Yes’ Chris Squire and Steve Hackett of Genesis fame is a journey that’s both at peace with what came before, and yet somehow brand new in the way that it combines the sensibilities of both bands without getting bound up in their pasts.

SPOCK’S BEARD – TESTIMONY 2: LIVE IN LOS ANGELES (2011): Morse joined his former band for three cuts found on early releases by Spock’s Beard. Midway through the current band’s reading of “The Light,” Morse bounds out on stage — just in time for “Return of the Catfish Man,” which charges forward with a gothic menace. Spock’s Beard then makes a crystalline transition into “The Dream,” the delicately moving closing segment of Morse’s very first prog composition. (I can’t help but hear, as Morse sings about a dream that can “stand up in the light,” the first inklings of his eventual turn toward praise rock.) “June,” meanwhile, is a gorgeous intertwining of vocal harmonies and guitars — perhaps the most approachable and emotionally available song he ever wrote for the band.

SOMETHING ELSE! INTERVIEW: GUITARIST STEVE HACKETT, FORMERLY OF GENESIS: Hackett, who still nurtures a lasting affinity for classical music, has leapt headlong back into prog rock — putting the finishing touches on a collaboration with Yes co-founder Chris Squire, even as he begins work on an album that will reexamine his celebrated tenure as guitarist with Genesis. Hackett went in depth on the new project with Squire, the guitarist’s celebrated tenure with Genesis, and the sweeping impact of J.S. Bach on his playing style.

NEAL MORSE – TESTIMONY 2 (2011): Morse confronted the triumphs and pain of his tenure and ultimate departure in 2002 from Spock’s Beard. In so doing, he ensured that this wasn’t simply an epic sequel to his initial solo release; in many ways, its grace and striking honesty make Testimony 2 the better record. As it unfolded, the album became a moving meditation on acceptance, on managing change, on embracing the past even as you move on. And Morse did it without sacrificing anything musically: For all of its underlying messages on faith — a conversion to Christianity precipitated Morse’s decision to go solo — 2 remained firmly rooted in the prog-rock tradition, from soaring keyboards to thrilling calculus-equation guitars to classically inspired compositional excursions.

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The Something Else! webzine, an accredited Google News affiliate, has been featured in The New York Times and NPR.com's A Blog Supreme, while our writers have also been published by USA Today, Jazz.com and UltimateClassicRock.com, among others. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.
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