Hey, what’s going on…?

Hey, what’s going on…?  A line that may remind some of a 90s pop song by a band called 4 Non Blondes, others will recall the song by Marvin Gaye, and yet others of a song from the s60s song For What It’s Worth by Buffalo Springfield, in which it is actually ‘everybody look what’s going down…


Either way, the line is the title of this post, because it’s a question I’ve been asking myself for the past months, especially when it comes to music. For some reason, I’ve not been so keen on listening to new music – be it prog, metal, or anything else since the end of summer. Likewise, I haven’t had special fun running my weekly show on ISKC rock radio, except for a few good days.. It’s not that I don’t like doing it, but when the music is not making you feel good, running a show becomes a chore. I don’t know what’s blocking me, but it’s been a nuisance. Luckily, it’s slowly changing.

Yes, it’s slowly turning, since I picked up a guitar and bass again a few weeks ago. I was preparing for the tribute show for Colin Tench, listening to some music, together with Arianna. She’d been asking me to play a bit for her for a while, and I picked up the acoustic Gretsch and we ended up doing some acoustic songs together – To Be With You by Mr. Big being the most memorable one. That revamped my musical feel again, and I’ve been playing more music since. Still not on the level I used to be at, but on last week’s show I had some of my old favourites going – the new ones will come soon.

Meanwhile, it’s also been quiet on my blog, except for the said memorial post on Colin’s passing. The reasons are the same, but I’ve also been busy doing other things. One thing that made me happy were the Christmas holidays. I spent two weeks with Arianna, in Italy and The Netherlands, with our children taking turns in being there – one time we’ll all be at the same place at the same time. Our first Christmas (of many to come) really together, and New Years eve and her birthday as well. A picture to prove … It was magical <3

Now what’s next? More radio shows, some musical cooperations in the making (I want to get back on my bass, for real) and a bright future. Join me again here, more to come…



And so, Today… in memory of Colin Tench

On December 30th 2017, just after midnight, Arianna and myself had just finished packing for our first flight together from Italy to The Netherlands and were ready to go to bed, when my phone buzzed. An incoming message from Gordo Bennett. Normally, I would have left the message till the morning, but the small bit that showed on the notification made me want to read it right away. “Angel my brother… My dear friend… It deeply saddens me”, it said. I opened the message and all I could say was ‘Nooo!’ – or something a bit more profane, I can’t remember. Colin Tench, musician, composer, producer, but most of all friend, had past away in the past few days. We didn’t sleep for a while that night, there were just tears, and short call to Gordo to bond in our grieve. I had talked to him only a few days before, just before Christmas, when he sent me his new album, and I promised to listen and call him after my holidays, in the first weekend of January. Tonight, actually, as I write this.

We cried, we talked about Colin and played only one song, before giving in to sleep. A song that he wrote at the end of 2016, the year that so many musicians left this earth – And So, Today….

A song, that now fits so much his own case. A talented man, in the middle of work and way too young to die. Actually, our friend Lucas Biela found the best words to express it a few days later: ‘Colin was too young to die, and nowhere near to old to rock n roll’

I’ve known Colin since early 2013, and we became closer friends after september 2014, when Corvus Stone released their second album. Arianna has known him since even a few years before then, around the time the BunChakeze album was released. When I had a burnout in 2015, Colin was one of the people that got me to use music as a way back to sanity – he got me in touch with other musicians, other music, reviewers and radio stations – and through that also to Arianna. He was a funny, talented and above all intelligent man. He was all over the web and the new music distribution channels, but hardly anything personal can be found about him online – although the past year he was a bit more open about the renovation of his house (and saving Shaun the Sheep from his roof – poor animal). Even the date of his birthday was a mystery, and most of us only found out the real date in the saddest possible way. Still, by talking to him, and being open about my own situation, he became more open about himself – and we learned a bit more about each others life. Things he told me, that he told us, and that we will cherish always, but that won’t be out in the open out of respect for our lost friend. A friend who we were planning to visit within the next two years, and who promised that once we settled on a wedding date, he would drive his Bentley south for us, and to learn how to play at least one song by heart for the occasion.

So much we talked about in so few years, and it feels like a void now.  Rest in peace – or rather, sit with the folks you wrote ‘And So Today…’ for, and rock the afterlife till the roof flies off. We miss you Colin, and we will always love you. You live on in your music, and the memories you left with us and so many others all over the world these 63 years.

And so, today 
Heard the news 
Did you hear what they say? 
The knight on the hill is sleeping 
Sleep well dear friend 
Your music is here to stay 
The magic still fills my ears 

Colin Tench – May 30, 1954 – December 27, 2017

Silhouette CD launch – The World Is Flat…

After three years of hard work, especially the past 6 months, it’s finally there. Silhouette’s new album The World Is Flat (And Other Alternative Facts) will be presented to a live audience on September 22nd at Parktheater Alphen. That evening, you will hear the new music, by a band that wants to go for it!

The band will share the stage with British prog act The Gift, who released a wonderful album Why The Sea is Salt in 2016. If you missed them at ‘t Blok in February, here’s your chance to catch up.

A fairy tale

Once upon a time, two years ago, I moved into a small cottage on a forest estate – a former holiday park. It was quiet, it was peaceful and it got me far enough away from things I was facing to start seeing them for what they are. I’m still working on that, but a year ago last week, I found a fairy that helped me further on the way to achieving that. A fairy with special magic, that radiates from a pair of sparkling green eyes. Last week, almost exactly a year after we met for the first time, she came to what should be the home of a fairy like her, the forest where I live.

That was a wonderful experience, full of surprise. Who would have thought that fairies know tricks to light a fire more efficiently, without using magic? And who would have thought fairies would feel so at home in a house of men, a completely different species?

We did a fire dance, around the barbecue, throwing in small twigs occasionally to get the fire going, and once the embers were glowing as hot as they could, we roasted meat and vegetables. We feasted together, and drank the wine of the elves. We went out to meet other people, traveling around the cities that surround the forest, and we enjoyed the food and wines at a nearby festival. Most of all, however, we enjoyed each others company, and that wonderful thing called love…

Tonight, I drink to many more encounters like this and to the fairy that lighted up the darkest time of my life. Here’s to years to come!


Under Nike’s wings

She said yes,
the glass of the pyramid shone brighter,
just like her eyes, and the Winged Victory smiled
benevolent from her faceless body,
wings spread and ready to fly.
The lock shines under a moonless garden,
its key buried in their hearts.


And the poet in her heart stepped into the light
No longer hidden, the question answered
To be forever, and never not to be

A new dawn..

Last night I was side kick on Into The Mirror Black, next to my wonderful DJ Morgana. We had an interview with Arjen Lucassen and a showcase of the forthcoming Ayreon album The Source. I had a great time, we had a great time – and we’ll do this again.

Does that mean my own show will stop? No, of course not. But there will be some changes in other areas. My reviews have become very infrequent and that is how I feel about reviewing right now: I’d rather enjoy the music and write she. I feel like it, without the pressure of ‘having to deliver’. So there will be a few more soon, for Background Magazine, but after that I’ll go back to doing it on my own. No pressure, and only do it when I feel like. And as for the 100 words? That will stay, because it’s a nice way of writing about the essence of things. And it allows people to get an idea of a album, and then go straight to the music.

So, leaving planet Alpha and on to planet Y, for a new dawn. Not through the black hole, but Into The Mirror Black….


St. Patrick’s Day Eyes

On March 17

In a country bright green

Where music is sacred

And always has been

The party commences

The fiddlers stand tall

Guitars matching voices

Their sound thrills the air

I’ve never been there

But I hear what it’s like

When I close my eyes

And imagine I’m there

People are drinking

The weather is nice

And I hold your hand

My girl with St. Patrick’s Day eyes


A memory

Sun on the flower,
above the fairy
The dragon
Reaching up from the shadows
A watch not ticking,
over a hat
My hands entangled in blue
A memory to recreate


Goodbye, goodnight

The road is long, uneven

And traveling it takes time

Yet with every move we make

We eat away distance, and time

Eventually we’ll get there,

if we keep our goal in mind

And we will know our time has come

When we’re pulling up the blankets

and goodbye becomes goodnight




Aisles – Hawaii

First time I heard Aisles was on their dark concept album 4:45AM. With Hawaii, they deliver another 80 minute concept album, about a group of human colonies surviving after the earth is destroyed. Musically it’s a very interesting mix of melodic symphonic rock, transferring the sound of the 70s and 80s to a 21st century sound. There is no lack of musicianship in this band, and Angel is one of the best vocalists I know. Highlights for me: jazz rock infused The Poet, and the wonderful, very melodic, symphonic rock pieces CH-7 and Pale Blue Dot. Progressive Rock lives in Chile.


Highly recommended.