I started working on a few new projects that I hope to release soon. I've been delving into some classic old Prog music lately, including classic Yes and King Crimson, and a bit of "new" prog, like Steven Wilson and Porcupine Tree. This more "classic" style of progressive music has inspired me, and I have about 8 songs nearly complete, and would like to fill out the album with 2 more songs.
I've also been listening to a really interesting project named The Nikki Grace Experience. This is a sort of "post-rock" meets melancholy ambient music project led by Marko Hupel since 2009. He has released a number of somewhat popular net releases (mostly on Webbed Hand Records) and some videos on YouTube. Lots of his tracks contain contributions of female singers (mainly Lotte Kestner, which is a stage name for an American singer from Seattle named Anna-Lynn Williams). Since the beginning of 2014 TNGE has added a new permanent member named Frank Lobow. I've scoured the Internet for more information on this musical project, and the most recent "website" I can only find is a Facebook page, but the latest post is dated September 2015. I highly recommend this band.
The Webbed Hand Records site is still active, and contains music from a whole bunch of other artists, too, so I recommend checking it out. But the best place to find downloads of the albums is at the Nikki Grace page at Internet Archive. They're all free and legal. And worth it. If you like simple, minimalist and melancholy music, this is for you.
TNGE has really inspired me to just sit at the piano and try to come up with simple chord progressions and melodies, and then try to come up with accompaniment from bass, drums, and other instruments. And eventually some guitar. This is probably going to be a similar sound to my "Gothambia Redux" album, which was also based on a lot of piano rather than guitar. I also managed to download a really good piano instrument called "Neo Piano". It's a very good sample set of a grand piano. With a little reverb, it sounds very realistic.
This music is a far cry from my usual metal-head tendencies, but I really like delving into different music that ISN'T metal lately. I need to expand my horizons and challenge myself artistically. Metal isn't the only good music.
Maybe I'm just getting old? Nah. I still have a few "metal" projects brewing, too. But first I need to try a few other things. Hopefully the prog album will be done soon (tentatively titled "Oakwind Hollow".)