With a career spanning more than three decades, composer and multi-instrumentalist Arjen Lucassen has firmly established himself worldwide as driving force in progressive rock. While best known for his rock opera project Ayreon, the multi-talented Dutchman also regularly embarks on musical side projects such as Ambeon, Guilt Machine and Star One. Arjen’s side projects all explore different aspects of his musical personality, with each new release being a creative reaction to the style of its predecessor. Star One is no exception…
"Strange Hobby" is an uncredited cover album (Pink Floyd, The Beatles, Status Quo, Paul Simon, The Who, Kaleidoscope, The Kinks, Bob Dylan, The Hollies, The Move, The Box Tops, T. Rex, The Beach Boys, The Monkees, Donovan by Arjen Anthony Lucassen, released in 1996. The album and the booklet contains no information about Lucassen and don't explain who was responsible for the recordings, to make the album even more "strange".
Nine Stones Close was conceived in 2008 as a solo project by Adrian Jones (Numb, Lie Big) and independently released the first CD, St Lo, in the Netherlands. After heavy airplay on The Rogues' Gallery on The Dividing Line Network he received an outpouring of critical acclaim and visibility which inspired the 2010 follow up Traces. The project grew into a band for Traces when Adrian joined up with Brendan Eyre (Riversea), Marc Atkinson (Mandalaband, Riversea), and Neil Quarrell. Geoff Barton even listed Traces in his top 20 albums of 2011 in Classic Rock Presents Prog.
Lost in the New Real (also referred to as Arjen Anthony Lucassen's Lost in the New Real) is the second solo studio album by Dutch songwriter, producer, singer, and multi-instrumentalist Arjen Anthony Lucassen. It is Lucassen's first solo album since Pools of Sorrow, Waves of Joy released 18 years ago under the name Anthony, before he reached fame with his progressive metal/rock opera project Ayreon. He sang lead vocals for the first time since the first album, and played most of the instruments himself including all guitars, bass and keyboards.
On Lost in the New Real, Lucassen does a very good job at creating some wonderful sound textures, by mixing the melodic progressive rock with some guitar metal riffs and adding some excellent keyboard works, a solid drumming and some folk music amidst.