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Magma's E-Re II or Pendragon's Indigo

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Poll Question: Which do you prefer?
Poll Choice Votes Poll Statistics
7 [31.82%]
14 [63.64%]
1 [4.55%]
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Logan View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Logan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Magma's E-Re II or Pendragon's Indigo
    Posted: July 20 2012 at 15:06
Apples and oranges, and just a poll of curiosity that was inspired by Goodgulff's (Bored of the Rings reference) http://www.progarchives.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=88445 polls, whose poll was in turn inspired by someone else.  I think Bored of the Rings a decent reference because this is such a boring poll.  Gandalff used 300 ratings minimum for albums that the 10 minute plus tracks came from for his 2008-2012 poll, and I wondered how well a track with less than 300 ratings from that period could fare against his first poll option (that happens to have no votes at this time, but it's a recent poll and I know Pendragon has quite a few fans at PA and it is off a very popular modern album) -- of course one track is from a favourite band of mine off an album I rate very highly, whereas the other is of a style I'm not that familiar with.   I think both bands are a little controversial at PA too in that both can inspire love and hate in listeners, though perhaps Pure is one of Pendragon's most generally accessible (in terms of Prog audience) albums, whereas I think that an album such as Magma's KA would be generally more accessible to general Prog audiences, and has a higher average rating ( I prefer E-Re)

This time I don't expect people to know both tracks before voting (though if people do vote for one, of course they should know that one at least).  However, here are both tracks for those that want to get to know both:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ccr-VkEpE18

http://grooveshark.com/#!/s/m+hnt+htt+R+II/2Fs4Ht?src=5


I expect that quite a few would have problems with my Magma choice as the Christian Vander vocals may be hard on some.  I love them -- find them so exuberant.  I just love this track, as well as the album it's off (works better not as a standalone, but...) Note: I love to finish posts in such an unfinished way instead of stating what seems to me the bleedin' obvious even if I choose to explain what seems to me the bleedin' obvious often).

"Oh that knee, gotta love that knee... Oh whee, that knee, oh whee...."


Edited by Logan - July 20 2012 at 15:14
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Anthony H. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 15:45
Haven't heard Indigo, but there's no way it comes close to E-Re.

Still, no vote.
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Logan View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Logan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 16:17
I got to know Pendragon's Pure a bit because it was once recommended to me as an album that I might enjoy despite not being into Neo-Prog (but for me it's rather too Arena Rock oriented).  I guess there are only so many guitar riffs once can come up with, but if one checks the youtube link, there's a metal-style guitar riff between 3:09 and 3:18 that sounds so damn familiar to me, and for some reason the song I'm thinking of isn't coming to my head (sure such riffs haave been used in a lot of music, but I'm probably thinking of something from the 80s or 70s).  it just came to me, I'm thinking of an Ozzy song or Black Sabbath song, maybe Crazy Train...  When I associate people usually say I'm crazy, but I do have a crazy train of thought processes....

The whole song off Pure (Indigo) sounds familiar to me *(bits remind me off this (such as Pink Floyd), and other bits remind me of that....).  Magma is hardly breaking new Magma ground with E-Re, but it has less generic qualities to my ears, which is not to dismiss Indigo as poor as the package is put together competently.  Magma has the more unique style/ vision, I think it's fair to say, which doesn't mean that one should prefer Magma.

Edited by Logan - July 20 2012 at 16:22
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Post Options Post Options   Quote sleeper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 16:46
Indigo. Magma have never really clicked with me unfortunately.
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Logan View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Logan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 17:16
Ah, well Indigo has twice the number of votes already.  Course I don't mind which track wins out.  Of course a lot of people, like you, Sleeper, have tried and failed to appreciate Magma, and I don't think the track I chose would convince Magma detractors to like the band.

By the way, Anthony, even though of course one should know both to fairly answer the poll question, I'm okay with people voting who only know one track (I would just hope that they would mention that in a post).  Gandalff's 300 ratings criteria made me curious about how much the number of votes by PA forum would correspoind with the numbers of ratings for the albums. You see,  I seem to recall (someone correct me if I'm mistaken) there being some concerns with people coming over from the Pendragon forum specicificallyy to boost up the ratings of Pure.  Something of a campaign that led to people registering at PA just to rate that album so that it would remain the most popular album at PA (that frontpage thing) and be the highest rated of the year.  I don't say this to open up any potential old grievances, but it was another reason why I wondered how well it would fare amongst PA regulars against the less rated E-Re (there are about a hundred fewer ratings for E-Re -- mind you, E-Re came out the following year as Pure).
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Man With Hat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 17:38
Magma
Dig me...But don't...Bury me
I'm running still, I shall until, one day, I hope that I'll arrive
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Triceratopsoil Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 18:04
lol
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Wanorak Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 19:02
Pendragon by a mile, I can't get into Magma. The Magma album that came from sounded great, but it all sounded the same to me and went nowhere IMO. I know get ready for the hate responses lol
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Triceratopsoil Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 19:06
Originally posted by Wanorak

it all sounded the same to me



Originally posted by Wanorak

Pendragon



lol
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Logan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 21:11
Originally posted by Wanorak

Pendragon by a mile, I can't get into Magma. The Magma album that came from sounded great, but it all sounded the same to me and went nowhere IMO. I know get ready for the hate responses lol


No hate from me, but I'm surprised at the "went nowhere" comment.  I feel like in "E-Re III" alone the music builds to two magnificent highs.  The last couple or so minutes of that track has an amazingly electrifying build-up and climax for me.  I did feel that it went a little too long at one time, and of course repetition is integral to it, but thought there were great pay-offs.  Some have stated that -re IV and E-Re I seem like filler, but to me they are beautiful and sandwich the E-Re suite so nicely.  My minor complaint with the album is that the two short tracks after "E-Re" are silly and superfluous.  I skip those, but then they are easy enough to skip, and are short anyway.  Felicite Thosz also has a similarly short, and I think superfluous and out of place, track.

I guess I also find far more contrast in the album than you.  To me the parts of "E-Re II" with  Christian Vander's Hhaily exuberant vocals have a significantly different feel from parts where Stella Vander leads the vocals, as well as the more choral work.  In regards to contrasts in music, I have found Magma used more contrasts through dissonance and consonance than what I have heard in Pendragon, which, maybe I haven't heard enough, but what I have heard ha usually, I thought, fallen into the general melodic rock category pretty squarely and hasn't experimented a great deal with different textures and musical forms within a piece (though Pendragon may draw from a wide variety of musical traditions to create quite unique compositions (dunno), but what I've heard has sounded pretty samey to me and quite derivative of others (Ii don't really know enough about Pendragon to speak on the originality front, but I'm sure others can guide me who know the music much better than I).

I think one thing for some Magma is that if they don't enjoy the bulding up of thematic music through repetition, they won't like a lot of Magma music.  I tend to love repetition in music, which is one reason why I like so much Kosmische and musique concrete. Having an appreciation for composers such as Stockhausen can be really helpful in "getting" such music, I think -- not that I'm putting Magma at the level of, say, Stockhausen (I do find that Magma can be really sublime for me -- it is my favourite band in PA other than Art Zoyd -- Art Zoyd drew inspiration from Magma).  It's different, but Stockhausen, Orff, and Coltrane were Vander influences, and Wagner I'd say, and I love those composers too.

Out of interest since that post took me on a train of thought, what would people say are Pendragon's biggest non-rock/ non-pop musical influences?


Edited by Logan - July 20 2012 at 21:58
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Argonaught Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 21:54
It's a little embarrassing, but I couldn't make friends with either Magma or Pendragon. Curiously, both bands have one characteristic in common: to my ear, they just tend to go round and round in endless circles without actually moving anywhere.
  
Only Pendragon does this in a more matter-of-fact, even-keeled, solemn manner, whereas Magma explodes into rampant battle chants. So, for a listener like me, it's sense of doom vs. sense of menace. 'Choose your method of execution'
 
In this poll I'd probably go for Magma, because at least they are a little more memorable. 
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Mellotron Storm Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 21:55
Magma, in fact that is a top three album for me from them. I love how dark and nasty it is compared to say K.A. Just my tastes i guess. I've held off getting the new Magma because it's been described as joyful and pleasant. Hmmm... well i actually took the plunge and ordered it today because everyone seems to like it. We'll see.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Logan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 22:38
Originally posted by Argonaught

It's a little embarrassing, but I couldn't make friends with either Magma or Pendragon. Curiously, both bands have one characteristic in common: to my ear, they just tend to go round and round in endless circles without actually moving anywhere.
  
Only Pendragon does this in a more matter-of-fact, even-keeled, solemn manner, whereas Magma explodes into rampant battle chants. So, for a listener like me, it's sense of doom vs. sense of menace. 'Choose your method of execution'
 
In this poll I'd probably go for Magma, because at least they are a little more memorable. 


I might have chosen a neither option, but that's too easy. ;)

That's an interesting observation about the going around in circles with both, and a thoughtful post completely.  I  know Magma does have that circular quality with  music of theirs.  If you haven't heard it, I recommend checking out Attahk which has more brevity than some other albums (you'll still find the chants and, I was going to post Mahnt and Dondai, but yeah, such circular rhythms to that album too.  To me the music gets somewhere, or more precisely, it takes me somewhere, but sometimes  it's more about a hypnotic journey than any destination for me (like with a lot of electronic music I listen to -- lots of little circles and bigger circles ("I'll be the roundabout").

By the by, since I'm incoherently rambling, this is my fave off Attahk and one of my favouritest Magma pieces:




Originally posted by Mellotron Storm

Magma, in fact that is a top three album for me from them. I love how dark and nasty it is compared to say K.A. Just my tastes i guess. I've held off getting the new Magma because it's been described as joyful and pleasant. Hmmm... well i actually took the plunge and ordered it today because everyone seems to like it. We'll see.


It's in my top five at least, but certianly E-Re is one of my favourite Magma albums.  That and Attahk are the ones I've played the most over the last couple of years.  My other faves are Kobaia, 1000 Degress Centigrade, and Wurdah Itah, but I love every Magma album (jncluding Merci), and I love Offering too.

I like E-Re more than KA -- I do love "KA II". 

I really like Felicite Thosz, but there is almost nothing new there.  I loved live versions of compositions off it already.  I actually was expecting that album to be done by Magma before E-Re.  It's short.  I do love the piano on it, but I kind of got tired of that album really quickly (EDIT: no I didn't, I'm listening to it again and enjoying it as much as ever.  I love it!)  It's really nice, and if you don't know all the music off of it already, it might please more.  When I got it I played it repeatedly -- I'm OCD, and so that's the way I sometimes play music.  I think it's my OCD personality that appreciates repetition in music (though I dislike a lot of repetition from my kids).  My mind is a very repetitious place, but somehow listening to repetitious music and playing the same music again and again and again drowns out the constant head-noise and voices telling me to "chill, chill, chilll" (that last part is a joke of sorts from a very tired brain). 

Anyway, I guess I just over-listened to it {EDIT: no it seems I didn't.  I guess I don't always feel like playing the same album many  times every day, though).  Especially since you like Offering, I think you'll enjoy FT.  I really wish it was longer, though.  The final track could have been beautifully, and easily developed more for the album, and more variations of themes could have been utilised without padding the album.

What I really like about FT is Christian Vander's exuberance in Nums and especially Ohst, and the beautiful tranquility of music (like in Teha) with exciting moments (Duha is energetic and darker than other music, if not really dark.,  Great track).  It is far more joyful and pleasant than dark, but certainly has contrasts.  I love both the darkness and joyfulness of Magma.

It is funny with Zahhr that Vander did this short and silly dark music to, I guess, negate the sweetness of what came before.  Totally superflous, but then I guess it's mean to act as a way of seperating the Felicite Thosz suite of tracks from Les Hommes Sont Venus.  By now I'm just talking to myself.  Enjoy the joy!  Maybe I'll review it when I get back in a week and a half from a trip.

By the way, I have been listening to it again as I wrote this, and I sure didn't tire of it after all as you can see by me edited in thoughts (which I edited in before posting). 
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Post Options Post Options   Quote The Doctor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 23:40
Magma.  But, had you used another band from the other poll, say Discipline or Beardfish or Phideaux, I'd have gone with the other band.  It just so happens I've never been much of a Pendragon fan.  I think this poll would have been more accurate had you listed other options.  I do like Emehntehtt-Re and it leaves Indigo in its dust, but would have not fared as well against one of those other bands.  
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Fox On The Rocks Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 20 2012 at 23:40
Uhh, Magma, seriously. Sax man
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Logan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 21 2012 at 02:07
Originally posted by The Doctor

Magma.  But, had you used another band from the other poll, say Discipline or Beardfish or Phideaux, I'd have gone with the other band.  It just so happens I've never been much of a Pendragon fan.  I think this poll would have been more accurate had you listed other options.  I do like Emehntehtt-Re and it leaves Indigo in its dust, but would have not fared as well against one of those other bands.  


Had Gandalff (I keep on thinking Ganondorf as I'm a bit of a Zelda fan) opted to include E-Re in his options -- had tried to include all ten minute plus songs of those years with 250 plus ratings --  then I expect that it would have done very well.  Had I included all of those versus E-Re, I also suspect that E-Re would have had a very respectable showing because the other options, minus the Maudlin of the Well in his Part 2 poll that I responded to, would, I think, generally share similar audiences and therefore split the vote amongst those while letting the, perhaps, dark horse of E-Re rise to be amongst the most voted for on the list.

In this case, though, the only track I knew on that Gandalff list other than Maudlin of the Well's is Pendragon's since the album was once recommended to me, and I don't like to cover music that I am not that familiar with (I think Gandalff often chooses based on PA searches rather than what he knows, and I can understand him, because of the way he tends to research polls, wanting to limit to 300 plus ratings as otherwise there's a lot more material to go through -- and I think he tends to avoid choices from categories he is not into, or somehow doesn't think Prog worthy).  My bias, but I wouldn't pair that Magma with the Maudlin since of Toby Driver's projects, I much prefer Kayo Dot and would rather do a match of Kayo Dot vs. Magma (probably have already).  I also think that I did one comparing E-Re to Univers Zero's Clivages before as those were both recent  albums that I really like from 70s bands.

As to my wondering if 300 ratings plus is a good point to consider the worthiness of an album -- in this case choosing specific tracks from an album based on a number of ratings criteria (in that it would have a chance to compete against the more rated) well perhaps this isn't really a fair match-up despite Pure having 99 more ratings (albeit many of those from non PAers who registered in order to promote the album through rating it highly).  For quite a long time it was the most popular album on the front page -- spent more time there than E-Re, I'm quite sure, but that was, I believe, part of a campaign.  Personally, if I were to use ratings as part of my criteria, I'd be more likely to base it on average rating than number of ratings

It is interesting to compare ratings, both numbers of and average rating of the ones I did choose (I'd include the ones you mentioned to compare, but that would take a little research and I'm tired):

4.19 | 276 ratings mhnthtt-R
2009

3.92 | 375 ratings Pure
2008

Not taking into consideration that we're comparing tracks rather than albums, and assuming that the numbers and ratings of both equally reflect PA's polls forum audience (which they don't), I would actually think that that would be  a fairly fair match-up, especially since I said that people can vote without knowing both.  The +.27 lead that E-Re has could be quite offset by the fact that E-Re has only 73.6 percent the number of raters as Pure has (more than 25 percent people know, or know and decided to rate Pure than E-Re).  And Pure has but a 6.8 percent lower rating than E-Re.  Of course it's not that simple to judge how effective and fair a poll is in terms of having a meaningful result (a result based on my questioning the worth, in one respect, of the 300 ratings minimum criteria (how much does knownness according to the albums database ratings reflect on poll results in the forum?).

If I were a statistician, I'd like to figure out an algorithm comparing number of ratings to average rating to come up with a fair, or reasonably valid framework for fairly pitting albums against each-other based on the album page ratings, and then do poll research on predictive capabilities to see how well that system might work when pitting albums up against each other, but alas, I am terrible at math (and potential accuracy would have to evaluated based on a large average/ subsets...).  Of course one would have to figure that the average forum user is not the same as the average rater and take into account the weighted ratings etc. since that skews results (I'd rather work based on average rating with no weight or do polls where the votes are weighted.  A vote without an explanation is only worth one tenth etc. Shocked Wink ).


Edited by Logan - July 21 2012 at 02:31
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Post Options Post Options   Quote sleeper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 21 2012 at 06:43
Originally posted by Logan

Ah, well Indigo has twice the number of votes already.  Course I don't mind which track wins out.  Of course a lot of people, like you, Sleeper, have tried and failed to appreciate Magma, and I don't think the track I chose would convince Magma detractors to like the band.

By the way, Anthony, even though of course one should know both to fairly answer the poll question, I'm okay with people voting who only know one track (I would just hope that they would mention that in a post).  Gandalff's 300 ratings criteria made me curious about how much the number of votes by PA forum would correspoind with the numbers of ratings for the albums. You see,  I seem to recall (someone correct me if I'm mistaken) there being some concerns with people coming over from the Pendragon forum specicificallyy to boost up the ratings of Pure.  Something of a campaign that led to people registering at PA just to rate that album so that it would remain the most popular album at PA (that frontpage thing) and be the highest rated of the year.  I don't say this to open up any potential old grievances, but it was another reason why I wondered how well it would fare amongst PA regulars against the less rated E-Re (there are about a hundred fewer ratings for E-Re -- mind you, E-Re came out the following year as Pure).


I actually have Studio Zund so I've heard everything from Kobaia to KA (my votes based on the live version of E-Re, I dont have the album). Magma's a band that has a lot of qualaties I should like, but they never seem to click with me.

I think those Pendragon fears ended up being unfounded since Indigo stayed highly rated (which isnt a surprise, a lot of people like that album) but dropped down the list to about 10th if I remember right.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Logan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 21 2012 at 13:15
Originally posted by sleeper

[
I actually have Studio Zund so I've heard everything from Kobaia to KA (my votes based on the live version of E-Re, I dont have the album). Magma's a band that has a lot of qualaties I should like, but they never seem to click with me.

I think those Pendragon fears ended up being unfounded since Indigo stayed highly rated (which isnt a surprise, a lot of people like that album) but dropped down the list to about 10th if I remember right.


The Pendragon concerns were founded -- people were being asked to register with PA to prop up the album.  It's happened with various bands fans over the years, of course, and doesn't really deserve singling out.  People want to promote, get exposure for, what they like, and I don't think it broke any rules.  Storm in a teacup.  I like to promote stuff via the board, others use reviews.... And when albums come out it's also typical for the average rating to be much higher, as uberfans are often the first to get the albums and rate them, plus I think one's reaction often cools if one waits to review and the freshness and excitement has worn off, and collabs then review which evens out scores....
Currently, without any numbers of ratings qualifiers Pendragon's is at number 3 for the Neo Prog category for that year, and is at number 44 for all categories.  If one searches ranking using Gandalff''s minimum 300 ratings criterion, then it's at number 3 for all categories for 2008.  In comparison, E-Re is at number 3 for all categories for 2009 using no number of ratings criterion.  3 and 3 using different criteria.  Talking stats so much cause it refers to earlier posts even though not that informative.

Aat least the Studio Znd boxset was a good investment, and a very good price for that much at one time (though the value may have gone down from its high-point and if there are other bigger box-sets, that would go down further).  By the way, live versions of E-Re can be quite different -- it's had different forms (and even different spellings) over the years.  Parts of what became the studio album have been released live since 1975.  It;s sort of a medley of  re-worked older compositions with new stuff, and new variations.  I like it more than earlier versions of the material, and would like to hear a live version of the studio album.  Not sure which live you heard, and don't feel like researching, but if none of the Studio Zund albums clicked, then I don't suppose that the poll's E-Re would either.  I think it may be Magma's most mature studio album (well, other than Felicite Thosz, but that is less realized, I think).
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ScorchedFirth Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 21 2012 at 16:57
I have mixed feelings about "Pure" but Indigo is brilliant for sure.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote sleeper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 21 2012 at 20:16
Originally posted by Logan

Originally posted by sleeper

[
I actually have Studio Zund so I've heard everything from Kobaia to KA (my votes based on the live version of E-Re, I dont have the album). Magma's a band that has a lot of qualaties I should like, but they never seem to click with me.

I think those Pendragon fears ended up being unfounded since Indigo stayed highly rated (which isnt a surprise, a lot of people like that album) but dropped down the list to about 10th if I remember right.


The Pendragon concerns were founded -- people were being asked to register with PA to prop up the album.  It's happened with various bands fans over the years, of course, and doesn't really deserve singling out.  People want to promote, get exposure for, what they like, and I don't think it broke any rules.  Storm in a teacup.  I like to promote stuff via the board, others use reviews.... And when albums come out it's also typical for the average rating to be much higher, as uberfans are often the first to get the albums and rate them, plus I think one's reaction often cools if one waits to review and the freshness and excitement has worn off, and collabs then review which evens out scores....
Currently, without any numbers of ratings qualifiers Pendragon's is at number 3 for the Neo Prog category for that year, and is at number 44 for all categories.  If one searches ranking using Gandalff''s minimum 300 ratings criterion, then it's at number 3 for all categories for 2008.  In comparison, E-Re is at number 3 for all categories for 2009 using no number of ratings criterion.  3 and 3 using different criteria.  Talking stats so much cause it refers to earlier posts even though not that informative.

Aat least the Studio Znd boxset was a good investment, and a very good price for that much at one time (though the value may have gone down from its high-point and if there are other bigger box-sets, that would go down further).  By the way, live versions of E-Re can be quite different -- it's had different forms (and even different spellings) over the years.  Parts of what became the studio album have been released live since 1975.  It;s sort of a medley of  re-worked older compositions with new stuff, and new variations.  I like it more than earlier versions of the material, and would like to hear a live version of the studio album.  Not sure which live you heard, and don't feel like researching, but if none of the Studio Zund albums clicked, then I don't suppose that the poll's E-Re would either.  I think it may be Magma's most mature studio album (well, other than Felicite Thosz, but that is less realized, I think).

I think you put it much better than my short single sentence did. We all see it with the better known and supported bands, the fanboys go first and the more circumspect reviews come in later, evening it all out.

I may end up selling Zund at some point and it'll probably be the only time I'd actually make a profit on selling a CD set given the really high prices I've seen it sold for. I can't remember which version I heard of E-Re, it would have been some years ago and probably on youtube or something like that and so hardly would have gotten much attention, but Magma has definitely become one band where I can respect them for their ability and what they do but the music never really moves me at all.
Spending more than I should on Prog since 2005

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