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Progres 2 - Dialog S Vesmírem CD (album) cover


Progres 2


Eclectic Prog

4.15 | 82 ratings

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Marty McFly
Special Collaborator
Errors and Omissions Team
5 stars Concept album with complex lyrics and for 1980, it's quite good sounding too (80s were disaster for music and even more for Prog, which almost faded out). Bands like Progres carried the torch further. I can only guess what the album is about. Even I am from Czech Republic and can understand the words, it's not so easy to really understand them (as in to get their meaning). I suppose it was band's intention. This makes the album more challenging and helps for repeated listens.

Of course, musically, Dialogue shows synth oriented sound, but it's not bad kind of synths. After all, we are talking about album which has a story that takes place entirely in space/there are topics about space, universe, planets and other sci-fi themes. Synths serves as atmosphere makers. The good thing is also variability of moods and genres here. From Hard Rock (really heavy sound) of Planeta Hieronyma Bosche (exactly what you would guess it means - Planet of Hieronymus Bosch, the famous "sinning" medieval painter), to half ballad, half long soloing track "Píseň o jablku" (A Song about an Apple).

A must if you want to explore more compelling music scene from Czechoslovakia era. I especially recommend expanded edition. Should be available through common ways (internet shops), but as with every artist from small country, that can be a bit of tricky. Yet another challenge I say.

Eclectic prog is probably description which fits here best, but when you hear these sounds, you can consider also term space rock. Not in classic meaning of this word, but in our specific, Czech way. Heavy using of synthesizers in rock music of 80s (talking only about Czech Republic). I'm aware that it's hard to understand, but even harder to describe. Conditions in Soviet, or Sov related countries in 80s were harsh, that can tell you any historicist, or people who lived here. Still 9 years till my birth, but I'm quite interested in recent history of 20th century and here I have many eye witnesses, simply people who lived here. And told me a story about past times.

Understanding these times is important for getting key to this record.

This is space themed record, names of songs (translated such as: "Earth 2555", "Shout in Proxima Centauri", "Planet of Hieronymus Bosch" and so on) are also cosmical (there's a pun in our language about name of space in English and Russian language translated to Czech language, it's quite complex joke). It's also story about artificial future, where are mostly machines, controlling every aspect of our lives. Human is alone, just solitary witness to this dystopia, to which he walked with optimistic steps.

I'm not afraid to call this masterpiece, it's so intelligent, with ironic to society, but yet kind lyrics, but at the same time some kind of prophetic about future and (whew), still stands as story about used-to-be times. Yeah (finally) and with great music too. I always wondered how I would appreciate all these English sounding prog songs (about 80% of them?) if I were native speaker. When talking about this, I'm pleased to the maximum. I understand perfectly everything what I only get in English records (not talking about Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portugal ones) after many listens. And sometimes even not then.

"Pisen o jablku" ("Song about the apple") is just metaphor, that we are trying to use world as much as we can, to the moment where only last bit of it remains (last apple seed in my hand part of lyrics), then we cries.

I like poetic lyrics.

So this can be considered as concept album, it has story, one theme and same sounding music - today we tune space sounds. 80s are generally considered as bad decade for musical arts, that's perhaps true, but there are exceptions (we all know Pendragon, Marillion, Peter Gabriel, Fates Warning etc). But that are new bands. Progres is older band, but still can take this approach perfectly. I know why. In history of Czech prog rock (not so big one as in for example UK, but because of it better to understand). My personal favourite is "Planeta H.B II.", because it's so heavy song, so psychedelic sounding (special way of Czech psychedelia, unique sound, not even little bit connected to classic psych prog rock)

I'm mostly realistic and I'm even now, but giving it something less than 5 would be blasphemy for someone with relationship to this album same as I have. And also from reasons given.

Czech Prog of the golden era in its best. While world's Prog movement had its heyday in 1971-1975, in Czechoslovakia, situation was more difficult. Slowed down by communism, conditions for releasing (and even playing) were harsh and so only few albums were released. Dialogue with the Universe is one of the (if not the) best albums.

Marty McFly | 5/5 |


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