A Progressive Rock Sub-genre

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Various Genres definition

Albums or CD's where more than one artist is featured either as a SAMPLER or a TRIBUTE to a particular band. Examples: - Peter and The Wolf - Prog Fairytale - 1975 / The Reading Room - 2000 / Leonardo - The Absolute Man - 2001 / Best Prog Rock Album in the World... Ever - 2003 / Un Voyage En Progressif Volume 1 to 8 / Kalevala - A Finnish Progressive Rock Epic.

Various Genres Top Albums

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

4.26 | 123 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
4.33 | 38 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
4.20 | 74 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
4.32 | 36 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
4.21 | 72 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
4.23 | 48 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
4.16 | 49 ratings
Various Artists (Tributes)
4.10 | 41 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
4.75 | 8 ratings
Various Artists (Tributes)
4.01 | 54 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
4.03 | 29 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
4.73 | 6 ratings
Various Artists (Tributes)
4.13 | 17 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
3.96 | 38 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
3.91 | 48 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
4.33 | 9 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)
4.44 | 7 ratings
Various Artists (Tributes)
4.14 | 12 ratings
Various Artists (Tributes)
4.60 | 5 ratings
Various Artists (Tributes)
3.92 | 21 ratings
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)

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Latest Various Genres Music Reviews

 21st Century Schizoid Band (King Crimson alumni group) - Live In Japan (DVD) by VARIOUS ARTISTS (TRIBUTES) album cover DVD/Video, 2002
4.00 | 1 ratings

21st Century Schizoid Band (King Crimson alumni group) - Live In Japan (DVD)
Various Artists (Tributes) Various Genres

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

— First review of this album —
4 stars The original and best!

The 21st Century Schizoid Band is a King Crimson "alumni group" consisting of Ian McDonald, Michael Giles, Peter Giles, Mel Collins and Jakko Jakszyk. Ian McDonald and Michael Giles were of course founding members of King Crimson contributing to the ground breaking 1969 debut In The Court Of The Crimson King and Mel Collins and Peter Giles both have histories with that pioneering progressive Rock group that go all the way back to the recording of the second album In The Wake Of Poseidon. Jakko Jakszyk was the only one here that at the time of this live recording had not previously been a member of King Crimson, but Jakszyk too has now recently joined the ranks of King Crimson. Here we have these five men performing an excellent concert in front of an ecstatic audience in Japan in November 2002.

With only two exceptions, the set list consists entirely of material that was written or co-written by someone on the stage. The show opens with a brief ambient instrumental credited to Jakszyk which sets the mood for the show and leads into A Man, A City. The latter is a song that was originally performed live by King Crimson after the release of In The Court Of The Crimson King and later became Pictures Of A City which first appeared in studio form on the follow up album In The Wake Of Poseidon. Next up is Cat Food which is another song from that second Crimson album. It bears a writing credit of Ian McDonald even though he didn't play on the original album version of the song since he and Michael Giles decided to leave the group around this time. After Cat Food comes a song of a much more recent origin, taken from Ian McDonald's 1999 solo album Driver's Eyes (which also featured Michael Giles as well as John Wetton and Steve Hackett and many others) Let There Be Light is a good song that sounds better live than in the studio and fits very nicely into the 21st Century Schizoid Band repertoire. The same must be said of Progress which is the only song in the set that I had not heard before. It is taken from Michael Giles solo album of the same name which was recorded around 1978 but was not released until 2002.

No less than four out of the five tracks from In The Court Of The Crimson King are here, every one of them excellently performed. Not only is this by far King Crimson's best album, it is also an eternal milestone of the whole genre of progressive Rock. Having these brilliant songs recreated in 2002 by some of the people who originally wrote and performed them back in the days utilizing modern recording technology is amazing. This is especially significant in virtue of the fact that Robert Fripp and co have entirely turned their backs on material from the band's early days. Hearing these great performances, I don't miss Fripp for a second.

The title track from In The Court Of The Crimson King as well as I Talk To The Wind were both written by Ian McDonald (with lyrics by Peter Sinfield) while Epitaph and 21st Century Schizoid Man were group compositions credited to Fripp, Greg Lake, McDonald, Giles and Sinfield. Moonchild is the sole song from that classic debut album album that is not included in this live set. Even though I certainly would not have minded hearing the first, harmonic, melodic part of this song, it is a blessing not to have to hear that aimless second part of the song. In a way, what we have here is the best of early King Crimson without any of the dross that made it onto some of their albums.

While the band's third album Lizard is not represented in this set list, we get two songs from the fourth album Islands. These are Formentera Lady and Ladies Of The Road, both credited to Fripp and Sinfield. Both of these live versions are in my opinion improvements over the original albums versions that had a very weak sound. The same can be said of Tomorrow's People and Birdman which both come from the 1971 McDonald & Giles album. The first of these features Michael Giles on lead vocals and the second is (in the present version) a great symphonic instrumental. The only song in the whole show that doesn't really fit in is If I Was, another one from McDonald's Driver's Eyes. It is a conventional Pop song on which McDonald himself takes the lead. While in general McDonald is an underrated and brilliant song writer, this is hardly his finest moment and his voice is too weak to carry the song.

Overall, this is a great live concert recording. The 21st Century Schizoid Band is much truer to King Crimson's original sound and spirit and they carry on the flame and preserve the great legacy of that band better than anyone else.

 Beyond Frontiers by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2014
4.00 | 1 ratings

Beyond Frontiers
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by lucas
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

— First review of this album —
4 stars Progstravaganza is a series of samplers that saw the light of day in 2010, at the instigation of enthusiastic founder of Prog Sphere website, Nikola Savic. The aim was to get the word out about new artists, be they self-produced or signed on a label, that lack exposure on the progressive scene.

After 20 samplers proposed in digital version, the talent digger decided to give his samplers a physical format. 'Beyond the frontiers' is the first of a series of samplers that will now be released as physical copies. Since this support doesn't offers the same time possibilities as digital versions, the number of artists sampled had to be reduced. The diversity in the material has also been restrained, for a specific focus on traditional progressive rock. The previous samplers proposed indeed a very wide range of musical styles, including ambient, jazz-fusion and extreme metal, besides progressive rock. The originality and the diversity of the bands' material on the new sampler allows nonetheless to realize that the current trends in progressive rock are far from being fixed and predictable.

As an example, one can senses the influence of trip-hop with Seconds Before Landing and their sensitive frailty, just like with the hybridous Fred Colombo where a Glass-like piano ensures the transition to a galloping progressive metal. The theatricality of Genesis can be witnessed in Fughu's music, who even benefit from the collaboration of the ever passionate Damian Wilson (Landmarq, Threshold) on vocal duties. As for Traffic Experiment, we navigate in cheerful pop seas yet with that 60's psychedelic vibe, where those exhilarating guitars and majestic Hammond fire on all cylinders. In a different range, Rolf Remlinger invites us to a devilish rockabilly supported by blazing guitars and keyboards. Conversely, our ears delight to a solar folk, first with Riccardo Sandri and a passion for traditional vibes, second with Celluloid Winter, in a more modern approach to the music. Progressive metal is not forgotten, as the music of Cea Serin, a band that went out of the silence after 10 years, is celebrated with its dynamic structures and a wide range of voices. One will also notice that Porcupine Tree continues to have disciples, with Machines Dream and their hazy music. Post-punk of the eighties is also feasting on the sampler, in its tribal form on one hand with The Amber Herd and their mesmerizing guitars, and gothic form on the other hand with The Moonling and their spectral guitars, together with the obviously snoring bass of Joy Division. With Overhaul, we are amazed by the diversity of the sound canvas, that ranges from symphonic pop to heavy prog and to traditional hard-rock and Chopin-like piano.

Progstravaganza is therefore the key to a very creative world, yet in need of help to surface from the vast progressive ocean. This projet is acclaimed by progressive rock lovers since its inception, and even if the number of bands sampled will be reduced with the new support, the diversity will still be there. A welcome return to ambient and extreme digressions is even planned on the forthcoming samplers. In short, this is a project to follow if you wish to be aware of the evolution of the progressive movement, and support original bands and artists. The release is planned for October 14th of 2014. The sampler can be pre-ordered at Progify.

 Marscape by VARIOUS ARTISTS (CONCEPT ALBUMS & THEMED COMPILATIONS) album cover Studio Album, 1976
4.13 | 17 ratings

Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations) Various Genres

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars Marscape is a soundtrack performed by some of the finest British jazz-rock musicians, mostly schooled within Brand X and under the leadership of keyboardist Robin Lumley and lyricon (an electronic wind instrument) player Jack Lancaster , both having glorified previous careers with the Brit prog universe. Brand X back up is provided by guitarist extraordinaire John Goodsall, the slippery fretless master Percy Jones and the ridiculously talent drummer turned future torch singer Phil Collins. Finally, Simon Jeffes (Penguin CafÚ Orchestra) arranges the necessary orchestrations where needed. I had this LP since its release and only recently found a CD version, so I was thrilled to add this puppy into my collection.

The material is mostly instrumental, but sort of strange and ethereal, purposefully so in order to really expand on its uniqueness. The sound is obviously closely associated with Brand X, as well as cousin projects Wilding-Bonus, Quantum Jump, Isotope and John G.Perry solo. Percy Jones needs no introduction, for my money among the top bassists ever (Perry not far behind), his fretless technique way more complex and technical than say the master of wobble Mick Karn of Japan legend. His playing is simply remarkable throughout, in perfect alignment with Collins' terrific rifling style. But this is really Robin Lumley's pet project, fully developing his piano artistry, adding harmonium, synths, organ and autoharp to his ivory arsenal, as well as being helped by Lancaster's saxes, flutes and the much- maligned lyricon.

The material for the most part is relatively mid-tempo, at times out right spacy like on the opener and on the unreservedly thrilling two-part "With a Great Feeling of Love" (an album highlight) and gets all stitched up on "Olympus Mons". This killer track really is typical of the British jazz rock scene, starting out with brooding sax, a driving rhythm and sudden plunges into oddball weirdness, such as the echoing gongs swimming in aquatic samples and traversed by blitzing piano rivulets, to then explode into a manic excursion into neo- Mahavishnu Orchestra land, everyone soloing like madmen but in controlled harmony with each other (Jones, Goodsall and Collins just cook and broil). Lumley really develops incredible mastery on his piano in particular, displaying a lavish style that is unafraid of jumping to intense zones of expression, whist doing the traditional jazz thing too.

Then when you least expect it, a synth-bass introduces "Hopper", an homage to the Soft Machine bassist I presume but cleverly camouflaged as the nickname for a Martian land rover, a rollicking excursion over sand, rocks, valleys and peaks, the lads having a ball bouncing all over their instruments with a little tchaka-tchaka guitar and calypso drum outro. At times, the mood becomes experimental and outer-worldly. This is no pop record as "Dust Storm" is just like its title would claim, an opaque and cross winded blizzard of microscopic molecules that rustle and inflict odd sensorial reactions (hey, 1976, okay!). After the koto infused "Blowholes" adding even more oddness to the proceedings, things revert to more rational behavior with the choir-led "Desolation", a 6 minute magnificent hymn to the galactic entities, a track that has all the traits that thrill the prog fan to no end. Sublime mood, incredible confidence, scintillating bass and drums, all built as a platform to dish out some sizzling soloing, as both Lancaster and Lumley let it rip, but in this cool jazz way. Jeffes' orchestrations are spot on, too. This track alone is worth pursuing the album, finally available nicely re-mastered and at a reasonable price (for a very long time only available as a Japanese import for mucho dinero).

'Domo arigato', Jeffes plays the koto again, in accordance with Lancaster's delicate flute, "Release" is the final cut of a true prog collector's addition. A classic.

4.5 Alien chocolates

 Miniatures (edited by Morgan Fisher) by VARIOUS ARTISTS (CONCEPT ALBUMS & THEMED COMPILATIONS) album cover Studio Album, 1980
3.71 | 3 ratings

Miniatures (edited by Morgan Fisher)
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations) Various Genres

Review by Dobermensch

3 stars Each track on 'Miniatures' lasts exactly one minute. This is actually a really good, sharp and straight to the point experimental album with a huge number of participants, each of whom add a certain individuality to proceedings,

If I tried to review this album track by track I'd be here all night. There are 40 tracks after all and that would bore most folk senseless. Most tracks are with vocals and outside the realm of normality. Of particular note is the hilarious rendition of 'Cum on Feel The Noiz' by Slade. It's rendered by the son of Neil Innes of Monty Python "Brave Sir Robin Ran Away" fame. Just a wee boy and a set of kid drums singing said song.

Each contributor has a painstakingly short entry where you can almost feel the frustration at the effort of fitting everything in within one minute. Intentionally, there's literally no drums or conventional instruments present in order to maintain continuity between tracks.

Interestingly the Residents also had an album of forty 'one minute tracks' released in the same year - one of which appears on this compilation.

'Miniatures' has a scatter gun approach with bullets flying at all angles replete with memorable quotations and rapid fire non sequiturs which will leave you none the wiser after listening. A truly bizarre and one off recording that says and means nothing.

 Jesus Christ Superstar by VARIOUS ARTISTS (CONCEPT ALBUMS & THEMED COMPILATIONS) album cover Studio Album, 1970
4.26 | 123 ratings

Jesus Christ Superstar
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations) Various Genres

Review by GruvanDahlman
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Musicals. Now there's a genre. Pompous and overblown. Doesn't that sound alot like progressive rock? In the case of ye olde Jesus Christ Superstar it couldn't be a more fitting description than that. I would not say, however, that it is a musical. For me, musicals are stories told through the musical medium, just like any concept album in the world of prog. I am not stating that prog and musicals are equals, simply that there are similarities. Jesus Christ is not, I say, a musical. Rather it is a supreme rock opera of huge proportions.

The birth of rock operas is debatable but this one, being released in the year of 1970, do belong to the first ones. Maybe Kinks was first. Or The Who. That is not the point. The point being that this opera is a seminal and awesome piece of progressive rock, bound together by the most cohesive pieces of music ever written. The theme, the last days of Christ, is also fantastic. No matter your religious beliefs it is a great story ande makes for a wide range of variety in moods, structures and psychological evaluations of all the concerned parties.

Each song is impressive in itself but the great thing is the way themes and songs are revisited and used again to great effect. For instance, "I don't know how to love him" is great sung by Mary Magdalene but dramatic and heart wrenching when Judas sings the same song. The angst portrayed vocally are moving, really.

The cast makes for great performances. Gillan makes a perfect Jesus, torn by his fate and destiny on the cross. Murray Head is fantastic as Judas and his vocals are really extraordinary acting through singing. The way he portrays Judas as torn between his destiny and beliefs, doubts and fears is truly wonderful to hear. I feel moved everytime he sings.

This edition, the first recording of many, is by far the best in my opinion. It is vibrant, alive and really raw, rough and hard rocking. A true masterpiece of early progressive concept rock. Easily five shining stars.

 Enneade by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1987
3.02 | 4 ratings

Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars This is a sampler from the Musea Records label featuring mainly Zeuhl styled music. It was originally released back in 1987. At the time of the release these were all new tracks. A fairly up and down listen I must say with some excellent tracks mixed in with some poor to average songs.

Up first and appropriately so is MAGMA but why they chose the song "You" is beyond me. This is a commercial sounding track all the way and at least the live version i've heard is an improvement on this one. Next is a band called TROLL and a song called "Break Up Dance". Kind of bombastic really with some prominant synths part way through. Violin takes over for the synths then the synths return. It's an okay instrumental. XALPH follows with "Gya-Tei" and I was drawn to this right from the first listen. A laid back instrumental with melancholic synths. This just sounds so good. Bernard Paganotti follows with "Urantia" a song that features plenty of tempo changes and moods which surprised me. An interesting track. The great Yochk'o Seffer follows with "Freya" and the horns certainly stand out throughout. Violin 2 minutes in on this one. ESKATON follows with "La Lutte" and it's a dark and deep sounding piece as female vocal expressions will come and go. An electronic vibe to this as well.

Francois Cahen is next and he worked with Yochk'o Seffer for so many years in ZAO and before that MAGMA. I really enjoy this tasteful piece with Cahen's beautiful electric piano work standing out. SHUB NIGGURATH sounds exactly like they should(haha) with that dark and eerie mood being front and center. EIDER STELLAIRE treats us with "Millenaires" and they do not disappoint. As usual I enjoy the guitar in their music as we get that typical Zeuhl rhythm that drives the song. Sax before 2 minutes. Great track! MUSIQUE NOISE is new to me. Not a fan of the male vocals or the overall sound of this one. FARBEN is also new to me and it opens with piano before a full sound arrives. It's an okay instrumental. ALTAIS is next and the sound of wind blowing greets us before haunting female vocal melodies join the wind. Things get a little too intense vocally when the male vocals arrive. Not a fan of this really. UNIVERS ZERO ends this with "Toujours Plus A L'est" a fantastic sounding tune. By the way this song would lead off their "Crawling WInd" EP.

So not a bad way to be introduced to Zeuhl I suppose, a mixed bag for sure.

 Deutsche Elektronische Musik: Experimental German Rock And Electronic Musik 1972-83 by VARIOUS ARTISTS (CONCEPT ALBUMS & THEMED COMPILATIONS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2010
5.00 | 1 ratings

Deutsche Elektronische Musik: Experimental German Rock And Electronic Musik 1972-83
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations) Various Genres

Review by Fido73

— First review of this album —
5 stars Wow! talk about a incredible best of Krautrock, this compilation has it all & it's well balance, it really sound like all the songs in there are related and came from the same year, but no, you cover 11 years of great Krautrock. Some song in there are edited version of the original, but the edit are well made and fit the flow of this compilation. If you are new to the german world of Krautrock, that compilation should be a good place to start. For the expert, there is nothing you haven't heard but is a really good mix of the best Krautrock, it might be a good addition to your Krautrock collection. A double compilation of this quality is rare and all of the track are 1st rate music so it deserve a 5 star rating.
 Recommended Records Sampler (1982) by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1982
4.95 | 3 ratings

Recommended Records Sampler (1982)
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

5 stars As far a label samplers go this might have been the most significant in that it opened a lot of people's eyes to a whole new style of music. This was originally released back in 1982 by Recommended Records and i'll let Chris Cutler the man behind the label explain the reason for releasing this recording. "In 1982 Recommended was 4 years old, the catalogue had expanded and the label was firmly established; a sampler seemed an obvious and necessary next step. Compiling extracts from existing releases would have been boring, so I asked the most interesting groups under our umbrella to record something new. Most of them did. All the Rio groups appear, except for ETRON FOU LELOUBLAN who had broken up, and the sharp edge of the new generation of British bands is also well represented(THIS HEAT, THE WORK, THE HOMOSEXUALS, AMOS AND SARAH). But Europeans and Americans still predominate; the Japanese had not arrived yet. Ths record would have sounded very different 3 years later". "Intended on it's release to be a practical compendium, 25 years on this collection reappears as an indispensible document of the range and musical brilliance of a handful of left-field groups struggling to give shape to new musical vocabularies. The breadth of their imaginations is exemplary. And Inspiring." Chris Cutler, May 2008.

I'd also like to say that it was about a year ago that I read a thread on this sampler where heavyweights like Udi Koomran(sound engineer extraordinaire) and Steve F.(Cuneiform Records) revealed that they both played this double album to death back in the day and even for them it was a major eye-opener and a revelation. That is when I decided I needed to get this. I'll touch briefly on most if not all of the songs. I have the 2008 25th anniversary edition which also reveals what all the bands were "up to" that participated 25 years previous.

Up first is VOGEL and the song "Bottle Train" and it's mostly keyboards, percussion and vocals. Kind of a relentless yet melancholic driving rhythm to it with vocals that are processed in some manner. I like it! FAUST follows and they play "The Voice Of The Pumpkin" which is "Extract V" from "Faust Party 3". You can tell right away that this is FAUST and expecially when the vocals arrive singing and shouting. This is experimental as you might imagine. ART BEARS are next with "All Hail!" and they are a trio of Cutler, Frith and Krause. This is one of their more accessible tracks and I would even call the chorus catchy. Of course with Dagmar singing it has an avant-garde feel to it. STORMY SIX offers up a really cool tune in "Reparto Novita". The vocals are great and the song is even better. A mid-paced melancholic beauty. THE HOMOSEXUALS play "Walk Before Imitate" and the band they also remind me of is CARDIACS with the high energy and vocal style. JOSEPH RACAILLE and PATRICK PORTELLA's song is a relaxed short tune with clarinets, piano and vocals. FELIU GASUL ends side one of the original vinyl. He went on to make a lot of albums and in the process became one of Spain's leading guitarists and composers. A beautiful track really with acoustic guitar, flute and piano leading the way.

Deranged vocals and loud percussion standout on the next song "Strangelove" by THE BLACK SHEEP. UNIVERS ZERO hits a homerun with "Influences" written by Kirk. Man this is a top five on here for me for sure. Just a classic UZ song that any fan would drool over. Love when it gets more intense around 1 1/2 minutes in. ASAK MABOUL/HONEYMOON KILLERS are up next with a song with some killer bass clarinet in it along with male and female vocals. "Houdini" is a song played by THE WORK. Tim Hodgkinson plays hawaiin guitar. There are male vocals and it's a cool tune to say the least. HENRY COW offers up a couple of songs in "Slice" and "Viva Pa Ubu" written by Coper and Hodgkinson respectively. The first is an instrumental and I like it but the second is a little more difficult with Krause singing and shouting along with the rest of the band. The first album ends with an extract from a radio broadcast from DECIBEL who are from Mexico. An excellent track with some left of center clarinet while the percussion and keys form a steady rhythm.

Album number two begins with ART ZOYD's "Simulacres" with horns blasting then some sinister sounding piano and bass groove joins in. Eerie sounding strings resound with short but fast precision. It becomes mesmerizing after 3 minutes then changes with a variety of sounds before becoming intense again. I love how themes are repeated throughout. Next we get two tracks from THE MUFFINS, both of which are part of "Chronometers". Great stuff! Check out the heaviness of "Berlin" by HEINER GOEBBELS. The sound of glass can be heard breaking as female spoken words in German join in. Soundscapes of many different happinenings involving people come and go. This is experimental but oh so interesting the way they mix the music with the soundclips. Love the scream that comes and goes(haha). A top five track. Next is AMOS AND SARAH which is catchy with odd sounding female vocals and backing vocals to match. I like this one, it's a little over the top but I admire it. CONVENTUM from Quebec are next with "Commerce Nostalgique" which is a gorgeous composition with intricate sounds of beauty. HECTOR ZAZOU performs "Vera C" an emotional piece of music that has to be in my top five.

Side four of the double album begins with THIS HEAT's "Pool" with it's intense rhythm and experimental sounds leading the way. Such a cool track. Another top five song is by THE RESIDENTS called "Walter Westinghouse". It is really funny when the guys pretty much speak the words, especially the one who sounds like a hillbilly. It gets really intense late. What a song! R. STEVE MOORE is new to me but I love his vocals and the music. He reminds me of Kevin Ayers when he sings and we are blessed with two tracks here. Both are catchy and I can't stop playing them! Inventive as well if you get a chance to hear either "Pedestrian Hop" or "Follow Me". What a talent. PICHIO DAL POZZO's "Uccelini Del Bosco" is a top five. Each instrument stands out and the vocals are so expressive. It all ends with ROBERT WYATT's "The Internationale". Vocals and marching styled drums lead the way.

This sampler introduced a lot of people to some of the most adventerous and innovative music on the planet, and so I guess i'm a little in awe of it and feel the 5 stars is warranted in more ways than one.

 Psychedelic Phinland - Finnish Hippie & Underground Music 1967-1974 by VARIOUS ARTISTS (LABEL SAMPLERS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2006
3.00 | 1 ratings

Psychedelic Phinland - Finnish Hippie & Underground Music 1967-1974
Various Artists (Label Samplers) Various Genres

Review by Matti
Collaborator Neo-Prog Team

— First review of this album —
3 stars Hopefully no-one strongly disagrees that this compilation deals closely enough with the Finnish prog history and is of some interest to the readers of PA, even if it isn't a PROG compilation per se. The 2-CD set gives you a wide picture of what several kinds of psychedelic / avant-garde popular music was made in Finland between 1967 and 1974. There's a two-page essay and all the needed information on each track, in English. Apart from e.g. BLUES SECTION and WIGWAM (the rare 'Must Be the Devil', 1969, is chosen from the latter) the songs are mostly sung in Finnish, and some tracks (most of the second disc) are instrumentals.

Only a few of the artists are known from the PA database. Heavy prog band APOLLO's 'Ajatuksia' is from their only album, 1970; PEKKA STRENG is represented with the deeply psychedelic and slow 'Olen erilainen' from his debut of that same year. PEKKA AIRAKSINEN's avant-garde tape experiment 'Fos 2' dates from 1968, and from his group THE SPERM is selected a 16-minute experimental piece for electric guitar.

TOPMOST was a sixties rock group who pioneered in including psychedelia in their shows (three of the members were later in APOLLO too). 'The End' is "an improvised collage of song bits, tape manipulation (...), all inspired by the fade-out section of the Beatles' All You Need Is Love". Singer- songwriter HECTOR, who had debuted with his own translation of 'Universal Soldier' in 1965, sings here (with a less-known chap OSCAR) about the particular smoke. "The story of a young kid hooked on grass was meant to serve as a warning, but at the time, a mere reference to drugs caused the song to be banned from airwaves". So it goes! The popular singer JUKKA KUOPPAM─KI also deals with drugs in his 1967 song.

BABY GRANDMOTHERS were a Swedish psychedelic group, but their only recording was this Finnish 7" single. EERO KOIVISTOINEN's fantastic album Valtakunta (1968) is represented with an urban, cool song sung by Eero Raittinen (later a vocalist of TASAVALLAN PRESIDENTTI). CHARLIES were a pioneering heavy blues rock group. The hilarious collective SUOMEN TALVISOTA 1939-40 were probably the most important of our underground groups, featuring M. A. NUMMINEN, "a central figure in Finnish avant-pop", and the late RAULI "Badding" SOMERJOKI. Even JUICE LESKINEN is here, with his humorous sexual allegory 'Zeppeliini'.

CD 1 is relatively accessible psychedelic pop music while CD 2 consists of more experimental recordings, most of them frankly pretty hard to digest. The compilation is very well edited in every way, making it at least an informative curiosity for foreign listeners too.

 Supernatural Fairy Tales: The Progressive Rock Era Sampler by VARIOUS ARTISTS (CONCEPT ALBUMS & THEMED COMPILATIONS) album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1996
2.33 | 3 ratings

Supernatural Fairy Tales: The Progressive Rock Era Sampler
Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations) Various Genres

Review by siLLy puPPy
Prog Reviewer

2 stars I defended the boxed set SUPERNATURAL FAIRY TALES: THE PROGRESSIVE ROCK ERA because despite being far from perfect it included various different artists that I had never heard of. This on the other hand is a sampler of a sampler that makes me wonder why in the world would someone have thought to release this? First of all how can you some up an entire monster genre like prog rock with ten songs. The full 5-cd set barely scratches the surface and imperfectly at that. On this release not only are 3 of the tracks proto-prog but they include a song by ELP, one by Yes and "Hocus Pocus" by Focus. EVERYONE knows these group's music even if they don't know a thing about prog! I just find the existence of this ridiculous and had to share it with the world. I'm rating this as a compilation not as a bunch of songs because I actually like most of this stuff, just not in this jumbled uninspired order.
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