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How integral is Renaissance for prog listening

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Icarium View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Icarium Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: How integral is Renaissance for prog listening
    Posted: April 16 2021 at 00:40
What i mean by that is a litle bit clonky to express but I will elaborate. Before me joining PA (in 2008), Renaissance struck me, not just as an important prog act, before i got introduced to the term the big 5 or the top 7 prog bands. I would logicly include Renaissance in either. I could swap Pink Floyd for Renaissance. As i also view Floyd in the category of British Invation (seccond wave) and that in itself is making Floyd in my bracket order, slightly different. Renaissance fits perfectly alongside King Crimson, Genesis, Emerson, Lake & Palmer and Yes. But I would not deny Pink Floyds possition as among the big 5 either. I just in my difficult one can also swap them. But both are integral in the big 7 (if we just focus on Britain).

I have not listend to nearly as much Ren. As i have done any of the other very known bands. But when they are encounterd, they strike me as a profound sonicly and enriching band witha colour pallet of sound so thick and intricate it's silly and dumb not to count them as an integral band in the prog family.

I in particular like the bass playing on albums like Illusion. And not purely symphonic either, therr are some interesting jazzy playing on some of the songs on it. Its crispy and fresh as a summer breeze.

I just wantes to express how easly one can forgett how influentual and inspiring a band like Renaissance can be. I feel i have and do neglect them but I also want to raize an awareness for this incredible band.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (2) Thanks(2)   Quote Frenetic Zetetic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 01:19
I'm the guy that will always argue nothing is essential, all that matters is what you like to hear! Over time your tastes naturally expand and you "find" bands that suddenly make sense, that were there the whole time. You didn't overlook them, you grew into them!

Just MHO!

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Icarium Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 01:31
I forgott to talk or include Jethro Tull in the argument of essentials; but that makes me think that i value Jethro Tull and Renaissance as equals in terms of how i view their impact. Both have a blues that transforms itself into a symph
/folk mammoth band. So i respect them equaly.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Progishness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 01:42
As Roger Waters once commented, what matters is whether a song moves you or not. Expanding on that, an artist will either press all your buttons or not, so what you find to be essential or 'integral' prog is entirely down to personal tastes and preferences.

Renaissance are certainly in my top 10 prog artists of all times. I'm not going to get into the argument about whether the Floyd (my favourite band of all time) are prog or not, otherwise all hell will let loose on here.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Blacksword Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 01:54
I'm not sure what's meant by 'important' in this context. Important to the individual listener, or important to the genre and beyond?

If by important we mean that an act is highly influential inside and/or outside the genre, then I'm not sure how much emphasis I would place on Renaissance, as much as I love their music personally, and would probably rank them in my prog top 10. I don't think they are as 'important' as Floyd or Crimson or Genesis in this regard. Fantastic band nonetheless.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Progishness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 02:11
If you ignore everything post Azure d'Or then they are certainly up there at the top table of prog.

[Similarly Genesis are truly great (in a purely prog sense) up to and including Wind and Wuthering.]

Just my twopennorth.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Icarium Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 04:26
Originally posted by Blacksword Blacksword wrote:

I'm not sure what's meant by 'important' in this context. Important to the individual listener, or important to the genre and beyond?

If by important we mean that an act is highly influential inside and/or outside the genre, then I'm not sure how much emphasis I would place on Renaissance, as much as I love their music personally, and would probably rank them in my prog top 10. I don't think they are as 'important' as Floyd or Crimson or Genesis in this regard. Fantastic band nonetheless.
I think both personal preferance but also but my main focus is on their reccognition and as an introduction to newcommers to progressive rock. Based just on a very recent reaction visoe whom were novices on Renaissance; directly put them in a progressive rock bracket; they listened to a random reccomended track (Mother Russia) and progressive music and progressive rock was emediatly reccogniced, and this couple were not experienced prog rock listeners at this point. I believe Ren is slightluĉy below Crimson, Genesis and Yes but equal to Jethro Tull and ElP and Pink Floyd is in another ball park completly.

Edited by Icarium - April 16 2021 at 04:28
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote chopper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 04:33
Originally posted by Blacksword Blacksword wrote:

I'm not sure what's meant by 'important' in this context. Important to the individual listener, or important to the genre and beyond?

If by important we mean that an act is highly influential inside and/or outside the genre, then I'm not sure how much emphasis I would place on Renaissance, as much as I love their music personally, and would probably rank them in my prog top 10. I don't think they are as 'important' as Floyd or Crimson or Genesis in this regard. Fantastic band nonetheless.

I agree, it's down to how important they are to you. They're quite a big prog band although not in the same league as your Yese and Genesises. I would say they're worth a listen to anyone who ls interested in prog but if you don't like them them move on.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Grumpyprogfan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 05:21
No band is integral or essential. It's about personal preferences.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rogerthat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 06:06
Originally posted by Icarium Icarium wrote:

What i mean by that is a litle bit clonky to express but I will elaborate. Before me joining PA (in 2008), Renaissance struck me, not just as an important prog act, before i got introduced to the term the big 5 or the top 7 prog bands. I would logicly include Renaissance in either. I could swap Pink Floyd for Renaissance. As i also view Floyd in the category of British Invation (seccond wave) and that in itself is making Floyd in my bracket order, slightly different. Renaissance fits perfectly alongside King Crimson, Genesis, Emerson, Lake & Palmer and Yes. But I would not deny Pink Floyds possition as among the big 5 either. I just in my difficult one can also swap them. But both are integral in the big 7 (if we just focus on Britain).

I have not listend to nearly as much Ren. As i have done any of the other very known bands. But when they are encounterd, they strike me as a profound sonicly and enriching band witha colour pallet of sound so thick and intricate it's silly and dumb not to count them as an integral band in the prog family.

I in particular like the bass playing on albums like Illusion. And not purely symphonic either, therr are some interesting jazzy playing on some of the songs on it. Its crispy and fresh as a summer breeze.

I just wantes to express how easly one can forgett how influentual and inspiring a band like Renaissance can be. I feel i have and do neglect them but I also want to raize an awareness for this incredible band.
How integral or not depends on whether the person is looking at exploring prog in an academic way and just covering the canonically important bands.  I wouldn't call Ren a canonically important band, especially compared to the other band you mentioned - Jethro Tull.  

HOWEVER, if you want to show a naysayer that prog doesn't have to be strange keyboard tones, lots of fast playing over distracting time sig changes and can be just soulful and beautiful to bask in, Ren is absolutely integral as part of the prog experience. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote The Dark Elf Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 06:28
Originally posted by Icarium Icarium wrote:

Originally posted by Blacksword Blacksword wrote:

I'm not sure what's meant by 'important' in this context. Important to the individual listener, or important to the genre and beyond?

If by important we mean that an act is highly influential inside and/or outside the genre, then I'm not sure how much emphasis I would place on Renaissance, as much as I love their music personally, and would probably rank them in my prog top 10. I don't think they are as 'important' as Floyd or Crimson or Genesis in this regard. Fantastic band nonetheless.
I think both personal preferance but also but my main focus is on their reccognition and as an introduction to newcommers to progressive rock. Based just on a very recent reaction visoe whom were novices on Renaissance; directly put them in a progressive rock bracket; they listened to a random reccomended track (Mother Russia) and progressive music and progressive rock was emediatly reccogniced, and this couple were not experienced prog rock listeners at this point. I believe Ren is slightluĉy below Crimson, Genesis and Yes but equal to Jethro Tull and ElP and Pink Floyd is in another ball park completly.

Stop it. Renaissance is a footnote. They had a few good albums in the mid-70s, had very little popularity, and....that's it. I suppose if you like vanilla ice cream, or tapioca, or plain yogurt, they are the band for you.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dr wu23 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 08:55
If you mean to say are they  'essential or fundamental' , then no. If someone is into prog already and has all the usual suspects I would certainly recommend they look into Renaissance...a good solid symph band .

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rogerthat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 11:08
Originally posted by Icarium Icarium wrote:

Originally posted by Blacksword Blacksword wrote:

I'm not sure what's meant by 'important' in this context. Important to the individual listener, or important to the genre and beyond?

If by important we mean that an act is highly influential inside and/or outside the genre, then I'm not sure how much emphasis I would place on Renaissance, as much as I love their music personally, and would probably rank them in my prog top 10. I don't think they are as 'important' as Floyd or Crimson or Genesis in this regard. Fantastic band nonetheless.
I think both personal preferance but also but my main focus is on their reccognition and as an introduction to newcommers to progressive rock. Based just on a very recent reaction visoe whom were novices on Renaissance; directly put them in a progressive rock bracket; they listened to a random reccomended track (Mother Russia) and progressive music and progressive rock was emediatly reccogniced, and this couple were not experienced prog rock listeners at this point. I believe Ren is slightluĉy below Crimson, Genesis and Yes but equal to Jethro Tull and ElP and Pink Floyd is in another ball park completly.

I guess you are referring to this couple here?


I would say it is purely coincidental that they happen to like Renaissance.  They might be more interested in vocals than prog listeners typically are.  In my experience, Renaissance isn't necessarily a surefire hit with prog listeners in the way those other bands are because they offer an appealing tone and texture rather than the unpredictability that prog listeners usually look for. 

As for your last statement, sorry, complete disagree on that.  ELP could fill gigantic stadiums.  JT had multiple albums going Gold with Aqualung going triple Platinum in the US.  Not one Renaissance album reached Gold in the US and only Song for All Seasons managed to reach Silver in the UK. You 'only' need to sell 100,000 albums to reach Gold in the UK and even Renaissance's most commercially successful album, especially one with a single that reached the top 10 there, couldn't get to Gold. 

Let's have some perspective here. Irrespective of your likes or dislikes, ELP and JT are massively influential bands in a way Renaissance never were. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SteveG Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 11:12
Originally posted by Progishness Progishness wrote:

If you ignore everything post Azure d'Or then they are certainly up there at the top table of prog.

[Similarly Genesis are truly great (in a purely prog sense) up to and including Wind and Wuthering.]

Just my twopennorth.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Progosopher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 11:14
My recommendation is to resist easy numbering schemes such as Big 5 or Top 10. Such numberings are the result of various opinions and tastes which may or may not correspond with your own. They can also be quite arbitrary. There is no reason for a band like Renaissance to bump out a band like Pink Floyd. The fact that Tull was overlooked in the original post shows the arbitrariness of such distinctions. I like to look at top 10 lists, but my interest is more about seeing what someone or group considers top 10 rather than letting them determine who should be in the list. Influence is historical and is often allied with popularity (but not always). Preference is personal. Fanboyism insists the two are the same. Look at the lists to see what other people think, let them guide your explorations, but never ever use them to determine what is important and/or enjoyable to you. Ying Yang
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SteveG Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 11:14
Back to the topic, a lot of musicians like Renaissance but I can't recall one ever saying that they were an influence.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kenethlevine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 11:18
they were second tier in terms of popularity in the prog world.  They sold a lot of albums in the US, particularly for a band with a decidedly "uncommercial" sound.  I think they remain very relevant because very few bands sounded like them which allows them to occupy a historic niche in prog.  Annie's voice has a lot to do with it but also the way the incorporated symphonics was different from Yes and ELP, for instance

Edited by kenethlevine - April 16 2021 at 11:18
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote SteveG Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 11:22
Originally posted by kenethlevine kenethlevine wrote:

they were second tier in terms of popularity in the prog world.  They sold a lot of albums in the US, particularly for a band with a decidedly "uncommercial" sound. 
As my wife used to say, they were a very popular obscure cult band. LOL

Edited by SteveG - April 16 2021 at 11:32
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Nogbad_The_Bad Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 11:25
If you wanted a fairly gentle introduction to mainstream prog rock then they'd be a very good introduction band. Beyond that they're 'nice'.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote I prophesy disaster Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 16 2021 at 12:29
How integral is Renaissance for prog listening? For me, not at all. I have "Scheherazade And Other Stories" and do like the album. It kind of reminds me of Jefferson Starship. But it is not an essential part of my music collection.
 
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