The legendary British band ASIA moves into the next phase of its extraordinary career with Gravitas, a brave new album that explores different musical landscapes while embracing its familiar musical past. Produced and written by band members John Wetton and Geoff Downes, Gravitas is deeply introspective within a clearly accessible sound. The album also introduces the world to the band’s new guitarist, Sam Coulson, who replaces Steve Howe in the line-up. From the title track, which chronicles a man’s struggle in the battlefield of life, to the powerfully compelling tale of unrequited love, The Closer I Get To You, the album is a tour de force for the band whose music has become a staple to rock fans. “Pure, unadulterated and stereotypical ASIA, with raw energy, enthusiasm and free from impurities,” says John Wetton. “It conveys the spectrum of emotion and colour from real life agonies to ecstatic fantasy of escapism. Great songs, fabulous performance. ‘Gravitas’ is ASIA by ASIA. At last. With the addition of Sam it allowed us to take the band in a slightly different and perhaps tougher direction,” adds Carl Palmer. “As a band we have been able to grow, while at the same time remain true to the classic ASIA sound that our fans know and love.”
ASIA’s debut album exploded onto the music scene in April 1982 and was the best selling album in the world that year. Featuring Geoff Downes (keyboards), Steve Howe (guitar), Carl Palmer (drums) and John Wetton on lead vocal and bass, the group was the logical successor to their collective bands of the 70’s – Yes, ELP, King Crimson, UK and The Buggles. The original ASIA reformed in 2006 for the first time in 23 years. “It always was a great live band, but this time the dragon has awoken with fresh energy, direction and purpose,” Wetton continues. “As with any new ASIA album, putting it all together presents something of a challenge,” adds Geoff Downes. “Everyone involved rose way above and beyond this challenge. There is a renewed energy when we step on stage now; we can feel it and I know the fans can feel it.” For ASIA’s long-devoted fans, the band’s return to the concert stage cannot come soon enough. As Palmer says: “Performing on stage is where this band truly comes into its element. Seeing the fans reacting to our music is what makes it all worthwhile. It is the fuel that drives this train we call ASIA.”
Gravitas will be available as a regular CD and a Deluxe CD+DVD Edition that includes bonus songs, a music video, a promo film and footage of classic live ASIA songs recorded with the Plovdiv Philharmonic Orchestra in Bulgaria.
ASIA is: John Wetton – lead vocal and bass / Carl Palmer – drums / Geoff Downes – keyboards / Sam Coulson – guitars