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NEO-PROG

A Progressive Rock Sub-genre


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Neo-Prog definition

Neo-Progressive rock (more commonly "Neo-Prog") is a subgenre of Progressive Rock that originally was used to describe artists strongly influenced by the classic symphonic prog bands that flourished during the 1970s. At the beginning of the neo-prog movement, the primary influence was early to mid-70's Genesis. Debate over when Neo-Prog actually came into being often takes place, with some asserting it began with Marillion's Script for a Jester's Tear in 1983. Others contend it began with Twelfth Night at the dawn of the 80s, while some even suggest the popular symphonic prog band Genesis gave rise to Neo-Prog with their 1976 album, A Trick of the Tail.

If one analyses the progressive movement just before 1980, then some albums which heavily influenced the Neo-Prog movement easily come to mind: Steve Hackett - Spectral Mornings, Genesis - Wind & Wuthering, Genesis - And Then There Were Three, Genesis - Seconds Out, Saga - Saga, all the Camel albums between Breathless and The Single Factor included, and some Eloy's albums, especially Silent Cries And Mighty Echoes.

This new form of progressive rock originated in the UK, and is most strongly associated with bands such as Marillion, Pendragon and IQ; and while theatrical stage antics were a part of the live performances of many artists exploring this subset of the progressive rock genre it's the musical elements that are key to the genre; typified by the use of atmospheric guitar and synth soloing with symphonic leanings, with a tendency towards floating synth layers and dreamy soloing. An additional trait is the use of modern synths rather than vintage analogue synths and keyboards. The main reasons for Neo-Progressive artists to be separated from the ones exploring Symphonic Prog in the first place are the above, as well as a heavier emphasis on song-form and melody than some of their earlier symphonic counterparts.

As time went by other artists appeared that also deviated from the norms created by the classic wave of progressive rock artists in the 70's. The late 70's had given the world punk music; the 80's gave the world new wave; and the 90's grunge. These, as well as other forms, had a tremendous amount of influence outside of the progressive rock realm. The advent of the modern synth also inspired artists like Tomita, Vangelis and Kitaro to explore dreamier musical works.

These and other forms of more or less newly made musical genres influenced artists exploring progressive rock as well. Although many artists did so within the framework of 70's progressive rock, more and more artists developed a sound and style so heavily influenced by these more recent musical developments that categorizing them within the existing subgenres of progressive rock became increasingly difficult.

While the Neo-Progressive genre initially consisted of artists exploring a modernized version of Symphonic Prog, these days artists coined as Neo-Progressive cover a multitude of musical expressions, where the common denominator is the inclusion - within a progressive rock framework - of musical elements developed just prior to and after 1980. The Neo-Progressive genre in it's refined form thus covers a vast musical territory, to some extent covering all existing subsets of progressive rock and also searching out towards genres as different as new age on one side and punk and metal on the other.

Opening paragraphs written by Stonebeard, Cygnus X-2, Greenback

Revised, edited and refined April 2009 by windhawk, The Doctor and E-Dub



The neo-prog team has also decided on 5 representative albums of neo-prog that encapsulate the essence of the genre. They are as follows:


Marillion-Script for a Jester's Tear
Collage-Moonshine
Satellite-A Street Between Sunrise and Sunset
Sylvan-Posthumous Silence
Frost-Milliontown


Current Neo-Prog Team members
as at 04/26/2015

Tom (Roland113)
Matti
Roger (Roj)

Neo-Prog Top Albums


Showing only studios | Based on members ratings & PA algorithm* | Show Top 100 Neo-Prog | More Top Prog lists and filters

4.30 | 775 ratings
THE ROAD OF BONES
IQ
4.24 | 1639 ratings
MISPLACED CHILDHOOD
Marillion
4.22 | 1562 ratings
SCRIPT FOR A JESTER'S TEAR
Marillion
4.20 | 504 ratings
CONTAGION
Arena
4.13 | 999 ratings
CLUTCHING AT STRAWS
Marillion
4.12 | 712 ratings
FREQUENCY
IQ
4.16 | 375 ratings
A TOWER OF SILENCE
Anubis
4.15 | 378 ratings
POSTHUMOUS SILENCE
Sylvan
4.10 | 840 ratings
MARBLES
Marillion
4.07 | 545 ratings
THE VISITOR
Arena
4.09 | 387 ratings
FANFARE & FANTASY
Comedy Of Errors
4.10 | 339 ratings
EMPIRES NEVER LAST
Galahad
4.29 | 104 ratings
SKYLINE
Barock Project
4.04 | 493 ratings
EVER
IQ
4.02 | 746 ratings
DARK MATTER
IQ
4.24 | 108 ratings
COFFEE IN NEUKÖLLN
Barock Project
4.07 | 255 ratings
SEVEN
Magenta
4.08 | 224 ratings
THE TALE OF THE GOLDEN KING
Psychedelic Ensemble, The
4.11 | 171 ratings
SPEAK
I and Thou
3.97 | 1023 ratings
FUGAZI
Marillion

Neo-Prog overlooked and obscure gems albums new


Random 4 (reload page for new list) | As selected by the Neo-Prog experts team

SONGS FROM PENNSYLVANIA
Ezra
VOICES
T
TRAVELLER
Magus (The Winter Tree)
TALES FROM THE DAM
Healing Road, The

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Latest Neo-Prog Music Reviews


 Travelog by KINETIC ELEMENT album cover Studio Album, 2015
4.02 | 43 ratings

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Travelog
Kinetic Element Neo-Prog

Review by Starcross

4 stars Just finished my first listen through TRAVELOG. All I can say is, "bravo." I really enjoyed POWERED BY LIGHT, but this one really takes some big steps in a very good direction. The writing and arrangements are always interesting, and the tracks develop and change in a very pleasing way. Each instrument shines in its own right, doing some cool and intricate stuff but never too much. Todd's instrumental guitar (and triangle) led section in the title track is just superb. Mike's keyboard driven, Bach-inspired fugue in the next track is one of the best things I've heard on a modern prog record in a long, long time. Drums and bass are consistently solid and interesting. Alternating between three different vocalists adds a feeling of diversity to the album that makes each track sound fresh and different from the others. The recording sounds great, and Fred and Steve's mix just sparkles...In fact, having mixed many albums myself I know the mix is of great importance, but amazingly at times I hear passages that actually SOUND like Glass Hammer. I can't wait to see what cool details emerge on subsequent listens...I have no doubt there will be many. Kudos to everyone involved, folks.
 Skyline by BAROCK PROJECT album cover Studio Album, 2015
4.29 | 104 ratings

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Skyline
Barock Project Neo-Prog

Review by King Manuel

5 stars I am at a stage in my life where I feel I have saturated my acquisitions of new prog rock acts to my collection as I often feel I have so much good stuff to listen to, but hardly enough time to do so. Also after years of mostly buying and listening to prog rock, I feel it's time to invest a bit more into other genres. But then and now I see a name of an unknown band on the Prog Archives and out of curiosity, I utelise the internet to quickly listen to some excerpts just to see if I am missing out on something. Mostly I notice, no, I am not missing out. Sometimes however I stumble upon something where I immediately know, I have to get this. This happened about a month or two ago when I noticed the Name Barock Project in a news snippet on PA announcing a new album coming up. I checked out the band on iTunes with their predecessor to Skyline, Coffe in Neukölln, and without hesitation clicked on Buy. I fell in love with the beautiful Coffee album and when Skyline came out, I decided I need this too. This time I also ordered the album as CD.

Skyline delivers a great sounding, fresh and uplifting melange of musical styles, genres and influences. I find the classification under "Neo-Prog" on this site a bit misleading. Sure, there are Neo-Prog elements to be found, but it's definitely not the dominating sound or style which the four young maestros deliver here, nor on their previous album. For the sake of putting Barock Project into a sub-genre box, I would rather chose "Crossover-Prog".

What is delivered on Skyline is Prog Rock with classical or barock influences, some jazz intermezzos, some hard rock, some symphonic, some folk, and neo-prog signatures. ELP and Jethro Tull influences on the band can be heard and the vocals remind me a lot of two German bands, Everon and Alias Eye. But despite those influences and comparisons the band sounds quite original and unique. The overall feeling of the music is positive and uplifting and very melodious. Although this is definitely not an album to prove: "Look, how many note we can play in a second", there is no denying that something musically mature and virtuosic is happening here. As much as the instrumental skills (and I am including the flawless vocal delivery here) are evident, the four Italians demonstrate to an almost higher level their ability of compositional skills. I cannot find any weak track here, every track in itself is a little captivating piece of art that entertains and moves me.

As far as 2015 concerned my favourite Prog release this year and I am sure in the long run, this will remain an album I will return to with great regularity as it represents a perfect example of what good, melodious, excellently performed and well arranged Prog should sound.

 30 by GALAHAD album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2015
4.90 | 2 ratings

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30
Galahad Neo-Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars Majestic. Grandiose. Class. Those are the very first words that came to me as I was listening to this four track EP, which Galahad have released as part of their thirtieth anniversary year. They have taken four of their older numbers, and have re-recorded them in a manner that is both a nod to the past yet very much showing the current and future direction of the band. Three of those involved, Stu Nicholson (vocals), Roy Keyworth (guitars) and Spencer Luckman (drums) were of course involved when the songs were recorded the first time around, Tim Ashton (bass) played on some before taking his rather extended break from the band (22 years!) while 'new boy' Dean Baker may not have played on these originally, but he has been around since 'Following Ghosts' (can it really be sixteen years since that came out?).

First up is 'The Chase', a song I first heard when Stu and I were sat in my car outside King Arthur's Court before a gig, listening to a pre-release of 'Voiceprint Radio Sessions' (which to my horror I realise was more than 20 years ago now as it was their 8th Anniversary show, with The Morrigan in support, who they had also played with at Whitchurch). This time around I was struck by the space contained within the song, and the way the use of acoustic guitar transforms it. Stu is still singing as well as ever, hitting the higher notes with ease, while the music shifts and moves. Providing bass is Daryl Watts, son of the band's original bassist Paul, and he locks in with Spencer to provide the groove while Roy is playing with more confidence than ever, relishing the opportunity to move the song into a more metallic direction with riffs that are both laid back and strident, while Dean definitely takes the opportunity to shine. Even when he isn't providing the primary melody, there is a great deal going on in the background, so that the song has way more depth and power than the original ever did. Something else I noticed on this song, and throughout the EP, is that the production has allowed us to really hear just how important Spencer is to the overall sound. I have played all of their songs many, many times, but I have never heard the drums quite so to the fore and hadn't realised just how much of a powerhouse he is.

And so, onto 'Chamber of Horrors'. I must confess that I was rather worried about this, as this was one of two songs from 'Nothing Is Written'. Not only was it their first ever full length release, but it is also an album that I have saved on my iPhone and still play frequently. For much of the time the band play this fairly 'straight', staying fairly close in many ways to the original (although Stu sounds more relaxed and going with the flow than first time around), but when Dean comes in with the keyboard lead with a sound straight from the Eighties all bets are off, with Tim providing some great driving bass in the background. The short break leads into the restrained guitar lead, some lounge keyboards and superb rhythm section, and then we are off and running towards the end.

'Dreaming From The Inside' was the A-side of the band's debut single, and was later re-recorded as part of the Galahad Acoustic Quintet project, but here the use of classical guitar (by producer Karl Groom ' very much a far cry from the sort of riffs he provides with Threshold) and piano (by ex-keyboard player Mark Andrews) combined with great vocals lifts it far higher than it had ever been imagined before. A great deal of thought has gone into this arrangement, and it is the restraint and use of space that makes it now one of the finest songs they have ever recorded. This is quality, sheer quality, of the very highest order with Tim and Spencer having an incredible impact by not appearing until nearly four and a half minutes through. Roy switches to electric, while Dean provides some keyboards on top of the piano, as they rock through to the end. Part of me is torn, as I can't make up my mind if it would have been better to stay with the trio all the way through, but I love it as it is.

'Room 801' is an intriguing choice to end the EP with, as although it has always been one of my favourite songs, this was one that I have always associated with Neil on bass due to the way he attacked this in concert, even though Tim played on the original recording. Here it starts with sound effects for the first minute or so, gradually coming in with a nod to 'Close Encounters'. One small thing that made me smile, is that on the original there is a distinct percussive sound that strikes out a rhythm, while here the exact same sound is used rather more sparingly. This has been done just for the true Galafan, as those hearing this for the first time won't know the difference, but anyone who has played the original will smile with the recognition. Almost Marillion-eque in its approach, there are multiple layers, and a classiness throughout the eleven minutes, with some great filmatic clips. I hate to think how much Dean had to work on this, as there are multiple keyboard tracks combining to provide a sound that is almost Tangerine Dream or Jean Michel Jarre at times, evoking the feel of 'space'. He and Stu combine magically, with the rest leaving them to it at times, coming back in to provide a restrained oomph. The guitar lick at eight minutes starts with Roy mimicking what he did all those years ago, before moving away and back again, keeping to the original but also making it very much a new piece with harmonies and layers of his own. Galahad probaby first came to prominence to many when they won the Radio One Rock Show Rock Challenge back in 1991. Somehow it seems fitting that the EP ends with the might Tommy Vance introducing the band (love the Stephen Hawkings amendment of Mark to Dean) and saying that 'Room 801' is an epic song. And do you know what? He's right.

So four songs, just tasters of what will be released later this year, and I can't wait.

 Script For A Jester's Tear by MARILLION album cover Studio Album, 1983
4.22 | 1562 ratings

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Script For A Jester's Tear
Marillion Neo-Prog

Review by AndyJ

5 stars Marillion's 'Script For A Jesters Tear' is in my opinion the definitive Marillion album. No matter how good the follow-up Marillion records have been, and there have been some crackers over the years, nothing has ever come close to matching the power and creativity shown on the 'Script'. There isn't a single ounce of fat on this album, every note has its place and every vocal is a lesson in perfection. Plenty of room is given throughout the compositions for lengthy instrumental sections, and the band are in complete harmony in every moment.

The album starts with the title track, 'Script For A Jesters Tear', which might be the best song Marillion have ever written. The naked vocals of Fish in the opening few bars can't help but make you think of Genesis's 'Selling England'. I have always wondered if this was an intention of the band, a sort of homage to their favourite band? But soon the rest of the band join in and this song blossoms into such a powerful piece of music and demonstrates just how amazing Fish is as a vocalist, particularly in the closing moments.

The rest of the album is equally compelling. I don't really want to do a track-by-track review of this album as it's not really my style, but I'll say that every song on this record is brilliant, and I never skip a single minute of this disc when I sit down to listen. It is utterly memorizing music I've never once gotten bored with it.

If I ever get stranded on that desert island this album will DEFINITELY be coming with me! Absolutely 5-stars, perfect progressive music for all tastes!

 The Window Of Life by PENDRAGON album cover Studio Album, 1993
3.91 | 390 ratings

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The Window Of Life
Pendragon Neo-Prog

Review by AndyJ

4 stars Pendragon's 'The Window Of Life' is for my opinion the second best album by the British neo-prog band - second only to their follow-up album, 'The Masquerade Overture'. What we have on this album is a refined and purposeful sounding Pendragon really coming into their own sound and maturing as a band with some beautiful progressive compositions.

Musically there is a great deal to love here, the songs have a brilliant identity, exploring a variety of progressive styles and even moving into more heavy metal moments from time to time! Clive Nolan's keyboard playing is brilliant, and some of the guitar solos from Nick Barrett are utterly divine, no-more so than on the third track, 'Breaking The Spell'. For my worth the final few instrumental minutes of 'Breaking The Spell' is the best moment on the album.

Vocally Nick Barrett sounds pretty good on here. There's no denying that Barrett isn't the greatest prog vocalist of all time, he's certainly no Fish or Gabriel, but having said that I do personally find something charming about his vocal style - it has a rustic and quaint style to it. Maybe as a British person I don't really have an issue with his accent but I can see why some people might be turned off.

A brilliant Pendragon album, bested only by their follow-up. 4-stars; I can't imagine any prog fan who wouldn't enjoy this album!

 Trip The Life Fantastic by DRIFTING SUN album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.94 | 87 ratings

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Trip The Life Fantastic
Drifting Sun Neo-Prog

Review by Ivan_Melgar_M
Special Collaborator Symphonic Prog Specialist

4 stars Surprisingly addictive

Received this album a couple days ago as a promotion from my good friend Aapatsos and started to listen it in the car, but the first minutes didn't impressed me, sounded too simple for my taste and a bit derivative from Hogarth Marillion, but as songs advanced, my impression started to change, to the point that I've been listening it repeatedly for the last 48 hours.

Even when this is not the music I usually listen, the passion of Pete Falconer in the vocals and the piano by Pat Sanders captured me more and more, giving me tome to appreciate the impeccable production and the skills of all the members but overall, it's nice to listen a band where the members play for the band rather than for their individual glory. The guitar solos are impressive but always blend cohesively with the music and the rhythm section works like a well oiled machine.

Even when this an album that must be listened from start to end rather than by songs, there are some tracks that impressed me more. In first place the melancholic Peach Blossoms and it's incredibly beautiful piano performance.

Also play special attention to the vibrant The Wizard and the frantic Tormented but overall to the mini epic Last Supper that has a hint of DEEP PURPLE with a great bass and percussion by Dan Storey and Will Jones......Oops, almost forgot the acoustic Ode to Nevermind that reminded me of Steve Hackett.........But listen the album in order without skipping a song, it's worth.

Before I end the review and as an advice, don't expect extremely complex stuff, because you may be disappointed, but if you want to listen good music with beautiful melodies, plenty piano and some strong guitar solos, then Trip The Life Fantastic is your album.

Four solid stars and will search for the previous releases.

 Travelog by KINETIC ELEMENT album cover Studio Album, 2015
4.02 | 43 ratings

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Travelog
Kinetic Element Neo-Prog

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Six years after their very promising debut (Powered By Light), Kinetic Element is back again with their sophmore release called Travelog. It was a long time coming, but very worth the waiting. The american quartet had some changes: now Mark Tupko replaces original bassist Tony D´Amato. And the vocal department, once courtesy of keyboardsman Mike Visaggio are now handle by three different guest singers. Other than that, the core members are the same (Visaggio on keys, Todd Russel on electric and acoustic guitars and Michael Murray on drums).

Compared to their debut, Travelog is a much more symphonic affair, with a strong jazz-rock fusion influence (specially the guitar parts). The music is still melodic and accessible, but definitly more complex and elaborated now, with longer instrumental passages. For instance, the shortest song is the title track and it clocks well over the 9 minute mark. There are no fillers at all and it´s hard to say which tune is the best, but I think the opener, the 20 minute epic War Song is definitely a highlight, with many tempo and mood changes. But the whole album is very inspired, very well produced and recorded and containing some powerful playing of all involved (including newcomer Tupko who shows his skills from the start with a short, but stunning bass solo on the aforementined War Song). I just love Visgagio´s elegant keys (hints of Tony Banks, Rick Wakeman and Keith Emerson abound). Russel´s guitar lines are superb too, but clearly this is a team work and everybody shines. Instrumentally speaking this album is as close to perfection as you can get, with not a wasted note to be found and everything flowing naturally thorughout the whole CD.

Vocals on the other side are not that perfect in my humble opinion. The three vocalists are very good and do a very creditable job on all tunes, but being so varied it kind of robbed some personality from the group. Mike Visaggio´s vocals on the first album showed that he was not the greatest singer, technically speaking, but he had a warm and soulful voice that suited their songs very well. While the guest singers were more professional, have stronger pipes, and most often than not they added a lot, sometimes they made the tunes sound too "clean" and less personal, if you know what I mean. It is just a detail only, of course. After all, 70 minutes of pure prog heaven is not something you find so easily nowadays!

Travelog is a fantastic CD that showed that Kinetic Element more than fulfilled its promising start. One of the best albums I heard this year and certainly a must have for any prog fan.

Rating: 4,5 stars at least,. Highly recommended!

 Republikflucht! ...Facing East by PROTEO album cover Studio Album, 2013
4.00 | 15 ratings

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Republikflucht! ...Facing East
Proteo Neo-Prog

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars Two things influenced my decision to order this album and subsequently enjoy it. Firstly, as a child refugee from Communist Hungary, I have always had a morbid fascination for the German Democratic Republic (aka East Germany, aka DDR), devouring books and movies on the subject of an insane society with the highest ratio of citizen to snitch in recorded history (one in six worked for the Stasi secret police). From 1948 to 1989, dissent, travel and western influences such as music and fashion were strictly 'verboten' (illegal). The country was totally subservient to Moscow's authority. Secondly, Camel's Andy Latimer devoted an entire album to the life in the socialist paradise with his 1984 work 'Stationary Traveler', a remarkable effort that attempted to depict the GDR and its gloomy hypocrisy. French band Pulsar also did the GDR justice with the brooding Gorlitz album, another thrilling Trabant ride into grayness. There is a great joke about the hilarious PVC automobile, a donkey and a Trabi are next to one another in a parking lot and the ass asks 'What are you?', the Trabant answers 'a Car!' , to which the long-eared animal replies smirking 'yeah and I am a horse!' . One can throw in the Oscar winning movie 'The Life of Others' (2006) as another eye opening glimpse into crass human stupidity, among many others cinematographic insights ('The Prize', 'Torn Curtain', 'Der Tunnel' and 'Barbara' among many more).

So when Italian (from Trieste) band Proteo launched this 2013 album to critical acclaim (two respected reviewers gave this a great thumbs up), I took the merry plunge into this 'Escape from the Republic' which was the word used by many to leave the GDR unlawfully, as emigration was considered a crime against the state. Also intriguing were the various mentions of musical influences ranging from the Fixx (a huge non-prog favorite) as well as my beloved Roxy Music. Also hints of Gino Vannelli (the vocals), Santana (lead guitars), the Police (rhythm guitars) and Rush are evident. There are two axemen, one (Matteo Copetti) with a clear Carlos Santana lead guitar style and the other (Marco Paulica) with an Andy Summers/Jamie West-Oram (the Fixx) rhythm riffer technique, and the two are simply tremendous together. The sneaky bass is held firmly by Alessandro Surian and Fabio Gorza handles the technical drums. Throw in some delightful saxophone and some unaccredited keyboards and you get the full deal.

The opening salvo 'Echoes Mankind' is a complex, cinematographic and harrowing piece that has somber tones, loaded with innumerable sound and voice effects, blaring alarm sirens, vibrating beats, all meshing together until the bass, drums and slashing guitars announce the vocal line. The suave juxtaposition of the two guitar styles are brought to the forefront and instill a pace that will continue on until the very end of the album. Drummer Gorza in particular uses that choppy Stewart Copeland style to great effect.

The other tracks are pure bliss, like the marvelous epic 'Berlin', a 13 minute excursion through a divided city, sliced by a harrowing wall of barbed-wire, snarling dogs, mine fields, guard towers, searchlights and snipers. The contrast between the grey and dark East with the brightly illuminated West was incredibly obvious to anyone on either side of the divide. The Police/Santana mood is thrilling and exalting, driven by furious rhythms and choppy vocals. The attitude is 'wunderbar' and upbeat, just like the Kurfuerstendam on a bright summer day. The scintillating and extended guitar Copetti solo is simply masterful. This breathtaking formula is repeated on the funkier 'Eastern Fields' with Paulica doing a passionate imitation of Cy Curnin (the Fixx' rather sensational lead vocalist), fully loaded with soaring electric guitar soloing, changing moods and thrilling technique.

The brief 'Funny Girls Playing Double Dutch' sounds like a throwback to Dexy's Midnight Runners or Prefab Sprout, presumably to offer a bit of levity, as well as some humor. The intricate 'Four Leaf Clover' is another highlight track, a 10 minute+ epic that certainly has a jazzy sheen, hinting at Steely Dan, with a delectable guitar interplay that will blow guitar fan boys sideways. The adamant vocals will recall TFF leader Roland Orzabal but the sustained lead guitar licks from Copetti will really stun a few out there, rapid, technically dazzling and insistently soaring.

'Republikflucht' is the final piece and again offers a sexy intro with shifting guitars and determined beat, a true joy for the ears, head and feet. Lots of mood changes, softer sections colliding with raging passages, the arrangement palpitates endlessly. Copetti sizzles along with his extended electric frenzy, unyielding and obstinate.

While the Police or the Fixx might seem odd bedfellows, truth is there is not many who dare to plunge into that odd direction. Proteo is a delightful band and this album certainly has multiple merits. I urge you to escape the Vopos and flee to the other side.

4.5 Erich Honneckers

 Mimi's Magic Moment by SALEM HILL album cover Studio Album, 2005
3.75 | 67 ratings

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Mimi's Magic Moment
Salem Hill Neo-Prog

Review by sinslice

4 stars "Now I know that I´m free, safe in step towards the future me" The Future Me

This is the only album of band led by Carl Graves I enjoy entirely. Intentionally, this is the most symphonic in the American group repertoire. Each of the songs is a gem to discover and enjoy, filled with passages plethoric of melodies and clever arrangements. Keyboards stand this time, with a strong role. Very well supported by the rest of instruments and guest musicians. Violin on tracks 1 and 3 by David Ragsdale (Kansas), like in excellent "To the Hill" from superlative 'The Robbery of Murder', flute in the shortest but great "All Fall Down". Allysa Hendrix and his female vocal touch, and what about the vocal duet on "The Joy Gem" between Patrick Henry and Neal Morse, or Fred Schendel (Glass Hammer) piano contribution on "The Future Me".

This is a work of songs with intriguing introductions, long interludes and catchy choruses with spiritual images, no dogmatic. Only "Sweet Hope Suite" from 2002 'Not Everybody's Gold', compares to this bold proposal of Salem Hill, which here are far removed from the alternative sound, heavier, and less progressive than previous or subsequent works.

Undoubtedly, his best contribution to progressive rock so far, IMHO. No less than 4 stars, I enjoy every minute without waste.

 Cocoon by TIGER MOTH TALES album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.29 | 40 ratings

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Cocoon
Tiger Moth Tales Neo-Prog

Review by odinalcatraz

5 stars Mind blown! Peter Jones and his Tiger Moth Tales just did that. I usually say, I remember where I was, when I first heard 3 albums in my life. It has now become 4! Beatles White album - Messed with my very young mind - A week later I knew it was brilliant Dark Side of the Moon (Floyd) - I knew straight away - It is brilliant The Light (Spock's Beard) - I knew prog was back - Brilliant! Cocoon - Knew within minutes this is brilliant!

A bit simplistic the way I wrote that? For good reason. Don't read this, just listen to the damn thing!

There are too many amazing musicians, singers, bands around now to list. One thing I was certain of. Nothing will ever really sound "Progressive" to me again. It seemed to me, to be a silly word now. I was wrong!

Cocoon IS progressive. Peter Jones has a voice that goes from Peter Gabriel, to Steve Hackett to Winston Churchill. (I mean it!) He can play guitar with the feel and virtuosity of Joe Satriani and countless others I might add. He plays piano or any keyboard like Tony Banks, when he chooses to do that. Saxophone that would fit perfectly in a solo about money. I know he could score a Hollywood movie then switch to insane heavy prog, a moment later.

This is the finest album of 2014 and in my opinion, one of the finest ever made in history and this seems to be just the start. NOTE: If you always hoped to hear a follow up to Foxtrot/Selling England by the Pound, this could be it. Stunned!

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Neo-Prog bands/artists list

Bands/Artists Country
25 YARD SCREAMER United Kingdom
ABACAB France
ABEL GANZ United Kingdom
ABRAXAS Poland
ACCEPT Japan
AD INFINITUM United States
ADN France
AELIAN Italy
AETHELLIS United States
AFTERGLOW France
AGENESS Finland
AGENTS OF MERCY Sweden
AHMSHERE Netherlands
AIRBAG Norway
AIRBRIDGE United Kingdom
AISLES Chile
ALBION Poland
ALKOZAUR France
ALMA SIDERIS Italy
ALSO EDEN United Kingdom
ALTAVIA Italy
AMANDA Belgium
AMON RA Germany
ANAMOR Poland
ANANKE Poland
ANDROID Hungary
ANIMATOR United States
ANNALIST Poland
ANUBIS Australia
APPLE PIE Russia
ARAGON Australia
ARCANSIEL Italy
ARCHANGEL Italy
ARENA United Kingdom
ARENAL Chile
ARGOS Germany
FINN ARILD Norway
ARK United Kingdom
ARKUS Netherlands
ARLEKIN Ukraine
ARLON Poland
ARRAKEEN France
ARVE Germany
ASGARD Italy
ASSAL Poland
ASTRALIS Chile
ASTURIAS Japan
ATEMPO Argentina
ATRIA France
ATRIUM Portugal
AUDITE Germany
AUFKLARUNG Italy
AVALON USA United States
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