What do you get when you match a Brit from London who loves American AOR with an American from California who grew up on British Prog? Dukes of the Orient is the masterful pairing of vocalist John Payne (ex-Asia, GPS) with keyboardist Erik Norlander (Last in Line, Lana Lane) who now present their eponymous debut album, ten years in the making.
Dukes of the Orient will release their self-titled debut February 23rd viaFrontiers Music Srl. Pre-order & stream singles here: http://radi.al/
Today, the band is pleased to present their new music video for the song “Seasons Will Change”, watch it HERE.
Erik Norlander on the “Seasons Will Change” song and video:
“The track, ‘Seasons Will Change,’ is the one of the last songs we wrote for the Dukes album, but it also happens to be the first song that we actually *finished* in its entirety! This one represents so much of the Dukes’ sound with a great blend of AOR melodies with a symphonic prog arrangement complete with a neoclassical modulating bridge and a similarly modulating piano outtro that adds complex, subtly understated harmony guitars at the end. You see a huge keyboard rig in the video, but I actually play every instrument you see there in this song from the Mellotron to the Hammond to the two Minimoogs and all the rest. So it’s not just for show!”
Watch the video for the track “Strange Days,” HERE.
Dukes of the Orient has its origins in 2007 as “Asia Featuring John Payne,” a band that continued on after Asia keyboardist, Geoff Downes, left to re-form the original 1982 lineup. Payne recruited Norlander to join Guthrie Govan and Jay Schellen for tour dates in the US and initial recordings, some of which endured to appear on the Dukes of the Orient album here. Govan left the band to form The Aristocrats and was replaced by guitarist Bruce Bouillet followed by Jeff Kollman and Moni Scaria. The final lineup resulted in the track, “Seasons Will Change,” released as a video in 2013 and also now appears on the Dukes of the Orient album. Following the death of original Asia vocalist, John Wetton, in early 2017, Payne and Norlander decided that these recordings should give birth to a new band, both out of respect for Wetton and for clarity with the Downes-led “Asia”.
1. Brother In Arms
2. Strange Days
3. Amor Vincit Omnia
4. Time Waits For No One
5. A Sorrow’s Crown
6. Fourth Of July
7. Seasons Will Change
8. Give Another Reason
John Payne (vocals, bass, guitars)
Erik Norlander (keyboards)