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How Important are lyrics to you in Prog music

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Kirillov View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kirillov Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 14:16
Low priority for me. I enjoy listening to PFM in Italian but can't understand a word. The words sound nice though.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SteveG Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 14:05
Originally posted by Toaster Mantis Toaster Mantis wrote:

I gotta admit that with Yes the lyrics are something to get used to. At first they read like the aftermath of an explosion in a New Age bookstore, and it might be a reason I don't listen to them that often.
I don't listen to Yes lyrics. Period. Just vocals as an instrument. (I'm silly like that )
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Toaster Mantis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 14:03
I gotta admit that with Yes the lyrics are something to get used to. At first they read like the aftermath of an explosion in a New Age bookstore, and it might be a reason I don't listen to them that often.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote addictedtoprog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 14:01
Originally posted by The Doctor The Doctor wrote:

Lyrics are very important to me, at least those albums/artists who have lyrics and the lyrics are in a language I can understand (love instrumental music, Zeuhl and RPI, so in those cases, if there are vocals I just listen to them as if they were another instrument).

Otherwise, I think good lyrics can greatly enhance good music and bad lyrics can certainly distract from and diminish the effects of good music. Some of my favorite prog lyricists are Peter Hammill, Neil Peart, Roger Waters and Fish. Of the newer lyricists, I liked Neal Morse before he went all "Jesus Loves You", Roine Stolt has some good stuff, Phideaux is one of my favorites and I find Andy Tillison's lyrics to be quite good, mostly.

As for Yes, some of the lyrics are quite good, but some of the lyrics, even though the words are in English they fall in the category of lyrics in a language I don't understand, and so I consider those vocals to be another instrument (I think often this was Jon's intent - "A seasoned witch could call you from the depths of your disgrace and rearrange your liver..." and so forth). I should mention too that I like h's lyrics for Marillion as they are quite good, but not quite as poetic as his predecessor's.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SteveG Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 13:56
^'before he went all Jesus loves you'   Your posts are always insightful with a kick, Doc!

Edited by SteveG - July 23 2014 at 13:59
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote The Doctor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 13:47
Lyrics are very important to me, at least those albums/artists who have lyrics and the lyrics are in a language I can understand (love instrumental music, Zeuhl and RPI, so in those cases, if there are vocals I just listen to them as if they were another instrument).

Otherwise, I think good lyrics can greatly enhance good music and bad lyrics can certainly distract from and diminish the effects of good music. Some of my favorite prog lyricists are Peter Hammill, Neil Peart, Roger Waters and Fish. Of the newer lyricists, I liked Neal Morse before he went all "Jesus Loves You", Roine Stolt has some good stuff, Phideaux is one of my favorites and I find Andy Tillison's lyrics to be quite good, mostly.

As for Yes, some of the lyrics are quite good, but some of the lyrics, even though the words are in English they fall in the category of lyrics in a language I don't understand, and so I consider those vocals to be another instrument (I think often this was Jon's intent - "A seasoned witch could call you from the depths of your disgrace and rearrange your liver..." and so forth). I should mention too that I like h's lyrics for Marillion as they are quite good, but not quite as poetic as his predecessor's.

Edited by The Doctor - July 23 2014 at 13:51
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Toaster Mantis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 13:47
Depends on the artist in question and their signature style. With some groups like Hawkwind and Jethro Tull, the lyrics are a main part of a unified aesthetic concept behind their music along with the visual aesthetics. In the case of people like Zappa and Beefheart, the entire music seems to take place entirely inside the songwriter's own mental universe and the idiosyncratic if often goofy lyrics are part of that.

Then there's other groups where the lyrics work more as "scene-setting" than anything else, where I don't pay that much attention because more of the themes are being communicated through the instrumental parts. Much of Yes' output falls into this category I'll say, and to some extent King Crimson too.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote addictedtoprog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 13:35
To me lyrics are quite important...but then sometimes (all of extreme metal except Opeth)i just don't feel any need to pay attention to the lyrics..
John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Steven Wilson, Fish, Michael Stipe, Mikael Akerfeldt, Daniel Gildenlöw, Thom Yorke etc are some of my favourite lyricists..
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SteveG Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 13:29
From my point of view, lyrics have to at least set the tone for some kind of narrative, theme or feeling for the music. Recently I've been listening to extreme prog metalers Cynic's album Kindly Bent To Free US. Singer/guitarist Paul Masvidal's lyrics reflect his eastern spiritual beliefs such as the defeating of one's own ego in order to obtain spiritual enlightenment. However, Masvidal, I believe, wrote lyrics to this effect in a menacing sounding song from the album titled Holy Fallout, which to me sounds like a tech metal 'Armageddon'. I'm not interested in the real meaning behind the lyrics as they work well with the menacing music and his serious delivery. So sometimes it's not what you say in music that counts but how you say it.

Edited by SteveG - July 23 2014 at 14:01
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote zravkapt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 12:53
Originally posted by Mind_Drive Mind_Drive wrote:

for me lyrics are the least important thing in any music 

This. To me vocals are just another imstrument; how the words are sung are more important to me than what is being said.
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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: July 23 2014 at 12:48
Zero importance, I tend to listen to instrumental & lyrics in languages I don't understand. Of the many bands I like with English lyrics the lyrics are the most important thing in very very few, if any.

Edited by Nogbad_The_Bad - July 23 2014 at 12:50
Ian



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MothTwiceborn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 10:29
As a lyricist, if I've learned one thing, it's that people don't listen to the bleedin' words :-)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Xonty Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 10:02
On the whole, lyrics are more difficult than music. There's only 12 notes but over a million words, and finding the right combination and something that's very emotional or intriguing is much harder IMO. Therefore, I can appreciate them more (being a wannabe progressive songwriter myself) which means I like them just as much, if not more than the music in some cases. I never really understood Marillion on the first few listens, and found them dull because the lyrics are very intricate on something like "Script For A Jester's Tear", and much less accessible than other acts. Over time though, I got more into it as I interpreted the lyrics and got to know them. Steven Wilson has some pretty great lyrical moments, but not a fan on the whole. Tool, Opeth, and other heavier bands don't really do much for me either, but Dream Theater's "Scenes From A Memory" is brilliantly narrated. Obviously those lyrics are essential to telling the concept and are just as important as the music
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mind_Drive Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 09:45
for me lyrics are the least important thing in any music - therefore i canīt stand singer-songwriter only focussing on "cool lyrics" with their music being uber boring

i never pay attention to lyrics so i donīt understand them although i think my understanding from hearing english spoken words is not too bad.. i just somehow blank out the meaning of the words.

some lyrics of course reach me but most of the time im disappointed because the words just dont do justice to the music
it feels like comparing an ocean with its endlessly floating unique waves to a little ship thats.. just a ship.. trying to give meaning to the ocean. through this lousy analogy you maybe can tell, that words just dont do it for me LOL

i am glad that i dont pay attention to most english lyrics because they often tend to disenchant the songs for me..
the voice of the singers is a very nice instrument playing in very different styles and adding nice atmospheres

but i guess im in a minority with this approach
It's just a ride... <3
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SteveG Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 23 2014 at 09:10





Song lyrics tell the story, or at  least try to. How important are lyrics to you in prog music and more importantly, how do you feel about the lyrical abilites of your favorite still active prog artists such as Steven Wilson, Dream Theater, Marillion, Panic Room, Gazpacho, Opeth, Tool, Yes and all?








Edited by SteveG - August 04 2014 at 13:34
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