On February 3rd, 2017, London-based progressive metal band HAKEN will release their first two albums "Aquarius" and "Visions" as new remastered 2CD editions as well as on vinyl for the very first time.
The first in a series of interviews with the band looking back on their first two albums and 10 years as a band has also now been launched.
Vocalist Ross Jennings commented on the releases: "As advocates of the physical format and fellow record collectors, it seems almost criminal that our first two albums have never had a vinyl release until now, so we are thrilled to finally give these albums a fresh presentation on the format they deserve. We have taken this opportunity to polish the sound of our beloved concept albums without going back over every little detail and rewriting history. In essence we wanted to give these albums a chance to stand shoulder to shoulder in sonic quality with "The Mountain" and "Affinity". In addition to this and due to popular demand, both releases will also be available again on CD with instrumental, or "Karaoke" versions of every track. This release marks 10 years since we formed the band and started putting together our first demos so it's a perfect time to reflect on these releases and appreciate what we've achieved so far.
The "Aquarius" concept was drawn from conversations about our favourite albums and the way in which the songs flow that make those particular records work. This lead to ideas about having our album be about the flow or journey of water from mountain spring to oceans and evaporation, which in turn lead on to a deeper concept about human life and reincarnation. The themes of water helped us to create aqueous soundscapes and as the music and lyrics started coming together a narrative was formed in the shape of Mermaids & natural disasters. "Aquarius" will always have a special place in our hearts. It's where our journey really began.
When writing for "Visions" came around, we set about the process with the same formula, although we hadn't set out to write another concept album at the time. As themes found themselves recurring in the music it only felt right to go in the narrative direction, although this time around we drew from our science fiction influences such as Minority Report and 12 Monkeys and was inspired by real recurring dreams I had been having around the time. It's always a joy to revisit these tracks in our live sets, so much so that we will be performing it in its entirety later this year at ProgPower USA, Atlanta!"
Newly remastered by the renowned Jens Bogren (Devin Townsend Project, Between the Buried & Me) both are available as 2CD Digipaks, digital album including the entire albums as instrumentals, and on vinyl, arriving as Gatefold heavyweight 2LP editions with the full album on CD included.
Make sure to catch HAKEN live on the band's 10th anniversary tour kicking off in March 2017, with support from The Algorithm & Next To None (except Israel).
'Haken X' Tour 2017
22nd March - Rescue Rooms, Nottingham, UK
23rd March - O2 ABC2, Glasgow, UK
24th March - Academy 3, Manchester, UK
25th March - O2 Academy 2, Birmingham, UK
26th March - Islington Assembly Hall, London, UK
28th March - Le Splendid, Lille, France
29th March - La Maroquinerie, Paris, France
30th March - La Laiterie, Strasbourg, France
31st March - KIFF, Aarau, Switzerland
1st April - Keller Klub, Stuttgart, Germany
3rd April - Zona Roveri, Bologna, Italy
4th April - Szene, Vienna, Austria
5th April - Dürer-Kert, Budapest, Hungary
6th April - Futurum, Prague, Czech Republic
7th April - Beatpol, Dresden, Germany
9th April - Chez Heinz, Hannover, Germany
10th April - Kesselhaus, Wiesbaden, Germany
11th April - Turock, Essen, Germany
12th April - Rockhal, Esch-Sur-Alzette, Luxembourg
13th April - Melkweg OZ, Amsterdam, Holland
15th April - Bascula Club, Tel Aviv, Israel
The band will also be heading out on Cruise To The Edge from the 7th February 2017, and will be performing 'Visions' in its entirety at Prog Power USA on the 6th September 2017.
Latest album 'Affinity' was released in April this year, and received great reactions from press; find a selection of them below:
"dextrous prog metal with retro pizzazz and roller-coaster riffs" - PROG Magazine
"Affinity proves what a unique and spellbinding band Haken are" - Metal Hammer 8/10
"inescapable melodic hooks and absorbing textures" - Total Guitar 4/5
"Affinity will be hailed as one of the landmarks of 2016 and beyond."- Powerplay 9/10
Pick up your copy of the album below:
The band has also previously launched videos for the tracks 'Earthrise', 'The Endless Knot' and 'Initiate'.