Not many of you will know the fact that Matthew Parmenter’s band Discipline was founded in the year 1987. You can find proof of it on the extra’s of this DVD that has a running time of more than two hours! There is some early video footage in that section that goes back to the year 1988. But for the people who don’t know this amazing band I would recommend to read the reviews of “Push & Profit” (1993) and “Unfolded like Staircase” (1997) that you can find in the review section of progVisions. “Unfolded like Staircase” is essential for the serious progfan. After those two studio albums there was only a live recording that was recorded at Orion Studios in Baltimore, Maryland. This album was released under the name “Into the dream …”. On the cover of this live album a collage of pictures was seen that came from a live video that was shot at the Magic Bag in Ferndale, Michigan. And this video is now the main dish of this DVD release. To finish my story, Matthew Parmenter made in 2004 with the help of Mathew Kennedy his first solo album entitled “Astray”. And last month the people of the Gouveia Artrock festival proudly announced that Matthew Parmenter will perform at the 2006 edition of this Portuguese festival!
For me a dream comes true with this DVD release. It shows the band at its most theatrical point of their career. Next to Matthew Parmenter (the Magic Acid Mime) the band exists out of Jon Preston Bouda (guitar), Mathew Kennedy (bass), Brad Buszard (keyboards) and Paul Dzendzel(drums). The setlist include from the album “Push & Profit” the songs “Diminished”, “Carmilla”, “Blueprint” and “The Nursery Year” and from the album “Unfolded like Staircase” you can find the song “Canto IV (limbo)”. The music has often a dark and melancholic character. And the band has been influenced by Peter Hammill’s band Van der Graaf Generator. The singing of Matthew is theatrical and drenched with emotion and passion. Also I would like to mention guitarist Jon Preston Bouda who impressed me with his emotional playing of several great melodic guitar solo’s.
There is an Extra section on the DVD that includes a extra hour of live footage spanning the band’s career from shows in 1988, 1992, 1997 and a rare 1998 performance of “Into the Dream”(from the “Unfolded like Staircase” album). Next to the 1995 performance that was shot the Magic Bag in Ferndale, Michigan this performance of “Into the Dream” is a highlight of this essential DVD release. I would like to describe this DVD as a historical document of a part the history of progressive rock. The music of Discipline is so intense and everytime when I listen to an album I immediately want to listen to all their albums. After this I’m so emotionally exhausted of this music full of passion, that I can’t listen to other music that day. And now you also have the pictures …
Highly recommended! And if you also buy the “Into the Dream …” live album, you can enjoy the Discipline live experience over and over again. If you like passionate prog with a dark edge to it I’m sure that this band will blow you away. Discipline is one of the most underrated bands in the prog scene. I hope that Matthew’s performance at the Gouveia Artrock festival will generate a lot of interest for Matthew’s music and that Discipline gets all the attention they deserve.