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Aggie87

Viva Prog Rock

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Anyone check out that BBC documentary Prog Rock Britannia? Pretty good, especially the early part, but then they skipped over a ton of bands.

Given how unfashionable prog rock has been in the UK since '76 - the music that shall never be rehabilitated - it's a wonder that programme got made at all. Even the most sympathetic of commentators cannot approach it without heavy layers of irony.

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Yes!

I've been listening to them since I was a teenager, but this Spring I've been I've been on a kick. Steve Howe is really something, take away his classical and bagtimey influences and he's one of (if not the) most original guitarists of his generation. I've listened to Tales, YesShows, Drama and a bunch of his solo albums (The Steve Howe Album, Quantum Guitar, Turbulence) quite a few times recently. Got a copy of Magnification, learning to like that one. I wish there were more legit live releases with Bruford or Moraz on 'em.

Listening to Gentle Giant - In a Glass House for the first time right now.

Edited by 7/4

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And part of what I've been excited about is his steel guitar playing.

whew!

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Yes!

I've been listening to them since I was a teenager, but this Spring I've been I've been on a kick. Steve Howe is really something, take away his classical and bagtimey influences and he's one of (if not the) most original guitarists of his generation. I've listened to Tales, YesShows, Drama and a bunch of his solo albums (The Steve Howe Album, Quantum Guitar, Turbulence) quite a few times recently. Got a copy of Magnification, learning to like that one. I wish there were more legit live releases with Bruford or Moraz on 'em.

Listening to Gentle Giant - In a Glass House for the first time right now.

I lost interest in Yes around the time of Relayer but took a chance with Magnification a few years back - really liked it. Strong songs. It think it benefits from not having a keyboard player.

I've never heard any of Steve Howe's solo music; but I notice a recent live album with his 'jazz' trio. Includes versions of Close to the Edge and Siberian Khatru!!!!!

news-TrioTravelling.jpg

Might use up my e-music credits on that, just out of curiosity!

They've even got a Dylan album by him which includes a 12 minute version of Sad-eyed Lady of the Lowlands with Jon Anderson singing! Now I understand why he called his drummer son Dylan!

[Just checked and it says the son is named after Dylan Thomas! Also that 'The Clap' was written for him as a baby. And I thought it was about something else!)

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Anyone know when this music got labelled 'prog'?

My memory from around 1970 when I started listening to music in earnest was that 'progressive' was a more general term used to describe music that tried to do a bit more than commercial pop (pop had yet to have sociological studies written about it proclaiming its importance). I vaguely recall pompously declaring my preference for progressive music to pop to my guffawing mates around that time. I thing Progressive with a capital 'P' started to be used around that time for the likes of Genesis, Yes etc but the 'Prog' diminution seems to come from later - initially, I suspect, used mockingly to deflate the grander word, later by the musicians themselves to demonstrate their ability to laugh at themselves.

At the time the appeal of the music was not so much it's 'progressive' nature as the fact that it didn't stick to standard blues progressions (Britain was awash with heavy blues-rock bands) and that the singers sang in an English accent (nothing against Americans singing in American accents, but Brits...!). As with folk-rock at the same time, there was a sense that this was a rock music made indigenous.

I think my hey-day with the music was at the time when it was still pretty home-made. I largely lost touch after '76, partly because it vanished from the airwaves, partly because what I did hear seemed more stadium orientated. It also seemed to fuse with metal at some point later - in the early 70s, although it ran parallel with metal, it was definitely an alternative.

I had to laugh at that Haken cover - guaranteed to scare off all but the core audience for prog/metal!

Edited by Bev Stapleton

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Speaking of prog-metal (which seems to be pretty much the only prog being made these days), I typed Progressive Rock into Pandora and it was pretty much all prog-metal, a genre I'm not really familiar with, but one band stuck out that it played; Symphony X. It's so awesomely cheesy, I actually like it. The singer is a bad-ass. I could never get into Dream Theater because those guys just seem to take themselves way too seriously; maybe Symphony X does too, but I sense a bit of humor in their stuff, or maybe a sense of "fuck it, we like singing about pirates and shit, so let's just do that" instead of trying to be overly profound.

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Amazing what 7 years will do. I love YES now, especially Relayer, which I think is one of their most underrated record. I think my problem with them back in 2003 is that I tried to get into them a few years before that with Tales From Topographic Oceans... probably not a good idea.

Probably not for a start, but strangely enough, Tales from Topographic Oceans has aged better for me than many of the more popular Yes classics. Today it's one of my favorite Yes albums and probably the one that I play most often (next to Drama, another rather untypical choice).

Speaking of prog-metal (which seems to be pretty much the only prog being made these days), I typed Progressive Rock into Pandora and it was pretty much all prog-metal, a genre I'm not really familiar with, but one band stuck out that it played; Symphony X. It's so awesomely cheesy, I actually like it. The singer is a bad-ass. I could never get into Dream Theater because those guys just seem to take themselves way too seriously; maybe Symphony X does too, but I sense a bit of humor in their stuff, or maybe a sense of "fuck it, we like singing about pirates and shit, so let's just do that" instead of trying to be overly profound.

Oh yeah, Symphony X are awesome! They've been moving away from the prog elements and

turning into a more generic power metal band recently (cheese and double bass drumming...),

but some of their material is really good. The Divine Wings of Tragedy and V (the latter

more orchestral and a concept album) would be my main recommendations! :) Their singer is

indeed fantastic and their guitarist is one of my favorite rhythm players in all metal.

Edited by Kyo

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Opeth is the epitome of prog-metal in my book, they cover all the bases and do it with style and class. They skip out on the Dream Theater-esque pyrotechnics and instead concentrate on mood and texture.

Edited by Shawn

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can't say that progmetal holds any interest for me, it lacks most of what makes prog interesting.

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Opeth.........definitely worth checking out. (Mastodon, too)

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I've never heard any of Steve Howe's solo music; but I notice a recent live album with his 'jazz' trio. Includes versions of Close to the Edge and Siberian Khatru!!!!!

news-TrioTravelling.jpg

Might use up my e-music credits on that, just out of curiosity!

Downloaded it and played it today. Hmm! Grant Green and Jimmy Smith Play Yes! Interesting to hear the Yes pieces shoehorned into an organ trio format; pleasant enough as an album, but a bit snoozy. I'm no expert but it sounded a bit under-rehearsed on Howe's part - notes not quite clicking in with the overall time, just a bit inflexible rhythmically on his part. His son seemed well up for the job. The 'live' audience applause also seemed artificial - I'm sure it was just turned up at the end of tracks but it reminded me of canned laughter.

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I can't get into Symphony X, I dunno, they're just not connecting with me. Where's the melodies?? Opeth however are beyond comparison. :)

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I can't get into Symphony X, I dunno, they're just not connecting with me. Where's the melodies??

You might just be listening to the wrong (more recent) stuff - they moved away

from a melodic style on The Odyssey and even more so on Paradise Lost and I

don't like a big part of the former and most of the latter for that reason.

Try songs like The Accolade and Accolade II, Candlelight Fantasia, Through

the Looking Glass (stellar track from the uneven Twilight in Olympus album),

Communion and the Oracle or Rediscovery (the finale of the V suite). :)

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Alright, I'll do that. You're right, I checked out mostly the tracks on the last release, and it was all quite generic.

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I've never heard any of Steve Howe's solo music; but I notice a recent live album with his 'jazz' trio. Includes versions of Close to the Edge and Siberian Khatru!!!!!

news-TrioTravelling.jpg

Might use up my e-music credits on that, just out of curiosity!

Downloaded it and played it today. Hmm! Grant Green and Jimmy Smith Play Yes! Interesting to hear the Yes pieces shoehorned into an organ trio format; pleasant enough as an album, but a bit snoozy. I'm no expert but it sounded a bit under-rehearsed on Howe's part - notes not quite clicking in with the overall time, just a bit inflexible rhythmically on his part. His son seemed well up for the job. The 'live' audience applause also seemed artificial - I'm sure it was just turned up at the end of tracks but it reminded me of canned laughter.

I have it, listened to it twice. I don't know what to think yet...let's hear him play bop!!!

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Opeth however are beyond comparison. :)

x2

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41HPPX022YL._SL500_AA300_.jpg

Listened to this for the first time since the late 70s yesterday.

Enjoyed it far more than I did at the time. I remember the whole album was played on the radio just before release - a group of mates sat, listened and we were all horrified. I bought a copy...just in case...but never warmed to it.

Enjoyed it far far more yesterday. It doesn't seem that well recorded, Anderson's voice seems strained and it lacks the melting melodies (apart from 'Soon') that were at the heart of the group previously. The songs themselves sound even more cut-and-paste than usual - fragments stiched together.

But Steve Howe seemed to be having a wail of a time - it really does seem to be his record with a level of grittiness and menace he had rarely shown before. Maybe it was their 'punk' record, two years before punk!!!!!

Happy to have been reaquainted.

Edited by Bev Stapleton

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A nice P. Tree vid from 2008

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But Steve Howe seemed to be having a wail of a time - it really does seem to be his record with a level of grittiness and menace he had rarely shown before. Maybe it was their 'punk' record, two years before punk!!!!!

I always felt it was his reaction to early Mahavishnu, maybe their heaviest album.

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But Steve Howe seemed to be having a wail of a time - it really does seem to be his record with a level of grittiness and menace he had rarely shown before. Maybe it was their 'punk' record, two years before punk!!!!!

I always felt it was his reaction to early Mahavishnu, maybe their heaviest album.

Mahavishnu had stunned everyone a couple of years earlier. I'd say the opening few minutes of 'Close to the Edge' come from that. Maybe his playing on 'Relayer' was taking that further...it just sees dirtier, less neat than previously. Which might be McLaughlin again.

I recall interviews with Phil Collins c.1974 where he was insistent that 'more Mahavishnu' was the direction he wanted Genesis to go in. The strange time-signatured, long instrumental section towards the end of 'Supper's Ready' was his response. Ironic when you consider the direction that both he and they eventually took. But then Mahavishnu became unfashionable almost as quickly as they became flavour of the month.

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Opeth however are beyond comparison. :)

x2

Opeth is an astonishingly good band.

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Maybe not Prog Rock....but I think this band had some influence in that area...

Gary Burton Quartet - Berlin 1967

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But then Mahavishnu became unfashionable almost as quickly as they became flavour of the month.

Yes...& prog-rock too a while longer.

Maybe not Prog Rock....but I think this band had some influence in that area...

Gary Burton Quartet - Berlin 1967

probably a bigger influence on Pat Metheny!

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