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Prog clichés

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Stool Man View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Stool Man Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Prog clichés
    Posted: March 21 2013 at 04:13
There are clichés in everything, of course.  But what are the clichés of progressive rock? 
 
I'd say, for example, that dividing a long piece of music into multiple sections and just calling each "Part I", "Part II", "Part III", "Part IV", etc is a cliché. 
Having a melody that only appears at the beginning and the end but nowhere in between is another cliché.
 
Your suggestions are welcome.  Please try to avoid picking on bands you don't like, let's keep it general.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Ajay Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 04:38
Playing bass like Chris Squire.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Dayvenkirq Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 04:41
 - Sounding to some extent like the prog giants (Genesis, Yes, KC) is very much cliched. Steven Wilson pulled that a lot on Grace and The Raven. A lot of Genesising and Hacketteering married with his brand of experimentation and songwriting.

 - The use of the Mellotron, Hammond, and the (Mini-)Moog.

 - Someone mentioned a few months ago that combining experimentation, improvisation, and classical influences can really do the trick. (Not always the case, like with Popol Vuh's Hosianna Mantra.)


Edited by Dayvenkirq - March 21 2013 at 05:30
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Post Options Post Options   Quote rdtprog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 05:07
 Plenty of 7 minutes song or higher with some Jazzy parts and a bunch of new sounds. Maybe, prog rock is a big cliché, after all...
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Stool Man Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 05:26
Originally posted by rdtprog

  Maybe, prog rock is a big cliché, after all...
 
No, Prog is an exception among clichés - most other styles of popular song last about three minutes, and have a verse/chorus/verse/chorus/bridge/verse/chorus structure, whether they're ballads or rockers, funky or folky.
 
To quote the man who turned down The Beatles in 1962 - "guitar bands are on the way out".  Now add another fifty years of guitar bands to that.
 
The world of prog is comparatively free of clichés, but this topic is about spotting those clichés that are particular to prog.


Edited by Stool Man - March 21 2013 at 05:29
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Post Options Post Options   Quote zeqexes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 05:26
Having a 15 - 25 minute song at the end of an album (especially evident in modern prog)
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Dayvenkirq Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 05:29
Originally posted by Stool Man

Originally posted by rdtprog

  Maybe, prog rock is a big cliché, after all...
 
No, Prog is an exception among clichés - most other styles of popular music last about three minutes, and have a verse/chorus/verse/chorus/bridge/verse/chorus structure, whether they're ballads or rockers, funky or folky.
 
To quote the man who turned down The Beatles in 1962 - "guitar bands are on the way out".  Now add another fifty years of guitar bands to that.
 
The world of prog is comparatively free of clichés, but this topic is about spotting those clichés that are particular to prog.
... and that is why he said: 
Originally posted by rdtprog

Plenty of 7 minutes song or higher with some Jazzy parts and a bunch of new sounds. Maybe, prog rock is a big cliché, after all...
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Stool Man Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 05:31
OK, then - this topic can help us find out if it is or not? LOL
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Dayvenkirq Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 05:33
 - Freedom and insanity reflected in the use of extraordinary melodies, chords (A5/C, Eb5sus4add9add11add13, etc., which might hint at contemporary classical music), rhythms, etc.
 - (Crappy, vague, universal-anthemic) philosophical lyrics.
 - Concepts (well-thought-out ... and the opposite).
 - Daring artwork (well-thought-out ... and the opposite).
 - Occasional instrumental filler.


Edited by Dayvenkirq - March 21 2013 at 05:41
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Morsenator Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 05:52
Pretending to be completely free of clichés, as if "inventing a new genre" (which someone probably did five years before the band in question started doing that kind of music) or complaining how "today's music is so devoid of new ideas" (except for the music they're making, of course) is itself pretty much a cliché by now.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Quirky Turkey Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 05:56
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fwyj3D13QhA

This includes a few.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Gerinski Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 05:58
- polyrythms
- having different parts of a song series in different albums
- using church pipe organ sound in a rock context
- guitar solos inspired by David Gilmour's
- singing about cosmic universal love instead of a man&woman's love
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Post Options Post Options   Quote rdtprog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 06:03
Originally posted by Stool Man

OK, then - this topic can help us find out if it is or not? LOL


Can Prog could be totally free of clichés? Maybe not, but i went pretty deep in his superficiality to know that the essence of Prog could be on his trend to avoid all clichés by experimenting with new genres.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote chopper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 07:38
An album cover featuring floating islands or some variation thereof.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ExittheLemming Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 07:44
The people who create cliches are always far more important than the talentless hacks who recognize the phenomenon being subsequently repeated by others e.g. Dylan, Floyd and the Beatles could be considered the primal movers and shakers for what would become our beloved Prog
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Post Options Post Options   Quote HolyMoly Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 07:56
Having lyrics incorporating plots and/or characters derived from fantasy books (e.g. Lord of the Rings) is a well worn prog cliche, at least in its early days.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Guldbamsen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 08:00
The idea of levitating music to be something more than 1-2-3 let's boogie - and that it in itself could be considered an art form. 
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Blacksword Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 08:15
Tony Banks once said that he felt Wind & Wuthering fell into 'predictable swirling dynamics' I guess 'swirling dynamics' is a prog cliche, but it's one I happen to love..

That said I don't want to hear modern prog bands playing around with the cliches of old, I'd rather they invented some new ones, in the true spirit of progression.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Progosopher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 09:37
Playing 20 notes in a second of time when a mere 10 will do . . . or even one.
The world of sound is certainly capable of infinite variety and, were our sense developed, of infinite extensions. -- George Santayana, "The Sense of Beauty"
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Ambient Hurricanes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 21 2013 at 09:48
The Free Online Dictionary defines cliche as "A trite or overused expression or idea", further explaining that the word denotes "an expression or idea that has lost its originality or force through overuse".  I think some of the responders are mistaking "common themes/tropes" for "cliches."  Profound lyrics about universal love/philosophy will always be poignant (as long as they're done well!), concept albums don't lose their resonancy because many of them are made, complex musical ideas have been used for hundreds of years and didn't become cliche in jazz or classical music.   
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