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Author Topic: By popular demand: Ben Craven ;)  (Read 5503 times)

Offline maddox

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By popular demand: Ben Craven ;)
« on: Wed, 2011-08-24, 14:45:34 »
Am I missing something?

Not at all!

I never knew anything about this fellow until last week either but here's some info:

Quote from: Ben Craven personal site
Ben Craven is a “cinematic progressive-rock singer-songwriter” from Brisbane, Australia.

He likes to make records.

Immersed as a toddler in the era of big prog rock, Craven taught himself guitar and keyboards and joined a series of bands. None of them made it and none of them remotely played the kind of music that had been burned into his mainframe as a kid.

Nonetheless, the songs he wrote accumulated steadily. In 2005, Craven dispensed entirely with the band approach and recorded his debut album, Two False Idols under the name of Tunisia. The result was a work of incredible maturity, with influences ranging from Pink Floyd and Brian Wilson to the likes of Bernard Herrmann and John Barry.

As Craven worked the album it became painfully obvious that the music business was in the midst of  a sea change, and most of the old guard didn’t seem to realise they were the cause. Very quickly he took an anti-DRM stance and released the live acoustic EP Under Deconstruction as a high-quality free download.

Craven has now stepped up a gear for his sophomore album, Great & Terrible Potions. Delivering on the cinematic promise of Two False Idols, Potions goes widescreen (literally) as Craven blurs the boundaries between conventional songs and orchestral soundtracks. Augmented by a stunning cover designed by legendary artist Roger Dean (Yes, Uriah Heep, Asia), Potions is dense, complicated and unashamedly pretentious – everything a good prog rock album should be!

Or, to put it another way, Craven sounds exactly like someone revelling in the creative freedom that can come only from not worrying about what others want, and delivering what he feels instead.

Like I already state, I listened to the album Great and Terrible Potions last weekend through Progstreaming and though it didn't really blew me away, I really liked the album.
I personally like his own description of his music:

If Pink Floyd had recorded the soundtrack for Star Wars, it might sound something like my new album, GREAT & TERRIBLE POTIONS.

Info can be found on his site: http://bencraven.com/

If you like Pink Floyd and the likes, give it a try!

For instance via Progstreaming.com. ;)

Cause of Injury: Lack of Adhesive Ducks.

Offline PH

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Re: By popular demand: Ben Craven ;)
« Reply #1 on: Wed, 2011-08-24, 15:35:01 »
If Pink Floyd had recorded the soundtrack for Star Wars, it might sound something like my new album, GREAT & TERRIBLE POTIONS.

I immediately got the Pink Floyd influence. But Star Wars? It didn't even occur to me that it could sound like a soundtrack to any film at all. In hindsight I can see there are cinematic instrumental passages of some sort, but I don't know...
To me it doesn't sound like if Pink Floyd recorded the soundtrack for Star Wars, but more like if Pink Floyd recorded just another album.

Like I already state, I listened to the album Great and Terrible Potions last weekend through Progstreaming and though it didn't really blew me away, I really liked the album.

Same for me. I just listened to it today and it was very nice music, but not this years masterpiece.

I'm going to listen to it again today and tomorrow, perhaps the mighty 'click' will do its trick.

Offline PH

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Re: By popular demand: Ben Craven ;)
« Reply #2 on: Fri, 2011-08-26, 10:19:14 »
I'm going to listen to it again today and tomorrow, perhaps the mighty 'click' will do its trick.

Sorry, I didn't. Will try today.

Offline maddox

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Re: By popular demand: Ben Craven ;)
« Reply #3 on: Fri, 2011-08-26, 15:02:09 »
Sorry, I didn't. Will try today.

I've placed the album on my Ipod so I listened to the album at work, last night.
Still a great album, reminds me a bit of Porcupine Tree as well, especially the guitar sound.
Some tracks are a bit poppy with a catchy refrain.
The discovery of the month for me.

Yet....

I still don't grasp the Star wars thingy.  :-\
Cause of Injury: Lack of Adhesive Ducks.

Offline PH

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Re: By popular demand: Ben Craven ;)
« Reply #4 on: Tue, 2011-09-06, 23:39:04 »
I've placed the album on my Ipod so I listened to the album at work, last night.
Still a great album, reminds me a bit of Porcupine Tree as well, especially the guitar sound.

I can see that. They both have the same source: Pink Floyd.

Some tracks are a bit poppy with a catchy refrain.
The discovery of the month for me.

He's a Prog-Singer-Songwriter. A bit in the same way like Steve Thorne actually. (Any news from him, btw?)
I cannot say it's a big discovery for me. But it's very nice of him to have the album streamed. I'm sure I will listen to it another time again.

I still don't grasp the Star wars thingy.  :-\

Me neither.
Also, the Arena reference Nicky mentioned is far beyond me. I wonder where did he get that from?


Also about how Roger Dean came to be involved: they seem to have a mutual friend who connected them. Ben stalked Roger for quite some time and in the end he agreed to make the album cover.

Source: http://www.progwereld.org/cms/interview-ben-craven/ (dutch)
« Last Edit: Tue, 2011-09-06, 23:42:43 by PH »

Offline Nicky007

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Re: By popular demand: Ben Craven ;)
« Reply #5 on: Wed, 2011-09-07, 17:47:06 »
Also, the Arena reference Nicky mentioned is far beyond me. I wonder where did he get that from?

It's actually not that difficult, Paxi: It's cuz Ben Craven sounds quite similar to Arena. Just like Ten  ;)

Iac compared to all the other music I listen to.

But OK guys, I'l admit I can hear the Floyd thingy now. But still I think Arena is closer  :)

Nicky.
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He's right here next to me

Offline Teunis

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Re: By popular demand: Ben Craven ;)
« Reply #6 on: Wed, 2011-09-07, 19:34:21 »
He's a Prog-Singer-Songwriter. A bit in the same way like Steve Thorne actually. (Any news from him, btw?)
According to his latest blog (5th June) he'll be releasing an album this year:

http://www.myspace.com/stevethorne/blog/543166857

Played the Ben Craven album this week for the third time, more pleasant after each listening I'd say.
'I will surrender my heart to the sky
Oh, our love doesn't end here, it lives forever on the wings of time'
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Toto - Wings of time (Kingdom of Desire)

Offline PH

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Re: By popular demand: Ben Craven ;)
« Reply #7 on: Wed, 2011-09-07, 21:04:13 »
According to his latest blog (5th June) he'll be releasing an album this year:

http://www.myspace.com/stevethorne/blog/543166857

Ah that's nice. He might want to update his website though. I happen to read websites more often than MySpace accounts. So he managed to get Martin Orford back in business. What is he up to nowadays?

Offline PH

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Re: By popular demand: Ben Craven ;)
« Reply #8 on: Mon, 2011-10-31, 22:49:38 »
He's a Prog-Singer-Songwriter. A bit in the same way like Steve Thorne actually. (Any news from him, btw?)

So [Steve Thorne] managed to get Martin Orford back in business. What is he up to nowadays?

I'm sorry for shamelessly hitchhiking this thread. I'll go back on topic!

I've listened to Ben's album and for some reason it finally clicked. It's still not a 'masterpiece' but it's better than I initially expected.

I love the cinematic sounds. Perhaps because I also love movie soundtracks. And there's also a melancholic ('dark-ish') touch to it. Add to it the inevitable Gilmourian guitar solos and the Pink Floyd connection is made.

About the Arena connection. After having listened to "Songs From The Lions Cage" I can only conclude that both Ben Craven and Arena are somehow (in)directly influenced by the mighty Floyd.