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PROG RELATED

A Progressive Rock Sub-genre


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Prog Related definition



No musical genre exists in a vacuum. Not all of the bands that have been a part of the history and development of progressive rock are necessarily progressive rock bands themselves. This is why progarchives has included a genre called prog-related, so we could include all the bands that complete the history of progressive rock, whether or not they were considered full-fledged progressive rock bands themselves.

There are many criteria that the prog-related evaluation team considers when deciding which bands are considered prog-related. Very few bands will meet all of this criteria, but this list will give an idea as to some of the things that help evaluate whether an artists is prog-related or not.

1) Influence on progressive rock - The groundbreaking work of artists like Led Zepplin and David Bowie affected many genres of rock, including at times progressive rock. Although both of these artists created rock music in a dizzying array of genres, both contributed to the ongoing history of progressive rock several times within the span of their careers.

2) Location - Progressive rock did not develop at the same time all over the world. It may surprise some people that as late as the mid-70s the US had very few original progressive rock bands that did not sound like exact copies of British bands. Journey was one of the first US bands to present a uniquely American brand of prog-rock before they eventually became a mainstream rock band. We have collaborators from all over the world who tell us which bands helped the progressive rock scene develop in their corner of the globe, even if those bands were like Journey and were known more for being mainstream rock bands.

3) Members of important progressive rock bands - Although most of the recorded solo output of artists like Greg Lake and David Gilmour falls more in a mainstream rock style, their contributions to progressive rock in their respective bands insures them a place in our prog-related genre.

4) Timeliness - Like many genres, prog-rock has had its ups and downs. In the late 70s and early 80s prog-rock was barely a blip on the radar. During this time artists such as David Bowie and Metallica released albums that captured key elements of the spirit of prog rock and did so while contributing their own original modern elements to the mix.

5) Integral part of the prog-rock scene - Sometimes you just had to be a part of the scene during a certain time period to understand how some bands fit with the prog rock scene of their time. Although Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath and Wishbone Ash may seem like mere hard rock bands, in their time they stood apart from other hard rockers with their more serious lyrical content and more developed compositions. Put simply, in the early 70s every prog-rock record collector usually had full collections of all three of these artists. These three bands were very much part of the prog-rock scene without being total prog-rock bands them selves.

6) Influenced by progressive rock - From the late 60s till about 1976 the progressive tendency was in full effect in almost all genres of music. Once again, as we enter the second decade of the 21st century a melting pot of prog-metal, math-rock, progressive electronics and post-rock influences have once again made a progressive tendency in rock music almost more a norm than a difference. Yet in other periods of musical history receiving influence from progressive rock could really set a band apart and make them worthy of our prog-related category.
Being influenced by progressive rock is hardly the only factor we look at, and in some periods of musical history it is almost meaningless, but still, it is almost a given that most of the artists listed in prog-related were influenced by the development of progressive rock.

7) Common sense - Nitpicking over the above listed criteria is not necessarily the correct way to evaluate a band for prog-related. Sometimes you just have to use some common sense and look at the big picture.
A very good way to describe prog-related would be to imagine an exhaustive book that covered the history of progressive rock. Would such a book include references to led Zeppelin's 'Stairway to Heaven', David Bowie's 'The Man Who Sold the World' or Queen's 'Bohemian Rhapsody'? Probably so.
- Easy Money

Prog Related Top Albums


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

4.41 | 1282 ratings
LED ZEPPELIN IV
Led Zeppelin
4.49 | 431 ratings
BLACKSTAR
Bowie, David
4.36 | 910 ratings
QUEEN II
Queen
4.32 | 1085 ratings
PARANOID
Black Sabbath
4.29 | 1055 ratings
A NIGHT AT THE OPERA
Queen
4.27 | 754 ratings
THE RISE AND FALL OF ZIGGY STARDUST AND THE SPIDERS FROM MARS
Bowie, David
4.24 | 979 ratings
BLACK SABBATH
Black Sabbath
4.25 | 763 ratings
ARGUS
Wishbone Ash
4.22 | 849 ratings
SEVENTH SON OF A SEVENTH SON
Iron Maiden
4.20 | 589 ratings
RISING
Rainbow
4.19 | 581 ratings
HUNKY DORY
Bowie, David
4.13 | 839 ratings
SABBATH BLOODY SABBATH
Black Sabbath
4.13 | 818 ratings
POWERSLAVE
Iron Maiden
4.12 | 810 ratings
MASTER OF PUPPETS
Metallica
4.20 | 270 ratings
REMAIN IN LIGHT
Talking Heads
4.09 | 858 ratings
MASTER OF REALITY
Black Sabbath
4.17 | 319 ratings
SECRET TREATIES
Blue Öyster Cult
4.10 | 681 ratings
RIDE THE LIGHTNING
Metallica
4.12 | 480 ratings
LOW
Bowie, David
4.05 | 955 ratings
PHYSICAL GRAFFITI
Led Zeppelin

Latest Prog Related Music Reviews


 Oh Well by GILTRAP, GORDON album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1978
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Oh Well
Gordon Giltrap Prog Related

Review by Matti
Prog Reviewer

— First review of this album —
3 stars Also this single features a non-album song on the A side and an album track on the B side. 'Oh Well' (later appearing as a bonus on the reissue of Perilous Journey, 1977) is a vocal song, unlike the majority of the Gordon Giltrap pieces around the time. The heady arrangement combines THIN LIZZY reminding blues-rock for the guitars and vocals, and the steamy, funky spirit of the jazz-rock of early CHICAGO and such, for all the extras in the big sound. Also the vocals have a ballsy edge to them, though they don't appear all the time.

'Reflections & Despair' is a nice instrumental from Perilous Journey. It starts in a peaceful tempo, and the acoustic guitar, gradually joined by other instruments, might make one think of ANTHONY PHILLIPS. Unpredicted twists come in the midway and the piece becomes pretty dynamic and adventurous. Full-blown progressive rock, in other words.

I'm not personally very fond of 'Oh Well', and for the B sider I'd rather point to the strong mother album Perilous Journey. Three stars will do, then.

 O Jerusalem by GILTRAP, GORDON album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1979
3.00 | 1 ratings

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O Jerusalem
Gordon Giltrap Prog Related

Review by Matti
Prog Reviewer

— First review of this album —
3 stars Guitarist and instrumentally oriented composer Gordon Giltrap (b. 1948) hasn't been heavily reviewed here; especially in Finland he's always been too forgotten, or rather, completely unknown by many. Here's a single with a non-album track, released around Fear of the Dark (1978) and The Peacock Party (1979).

'O Jerusalem' is Giltrap's instrumental version of the famous hymn 'Jerusalem' (composed by Hubert Parry to the William Blake poem), well known for the prog listeners as a powerfully rocking version of Emerson, Lake & Palmer, and from the Vangelis soundtrack Chariots of Fire. Giltrap offers an interesting addition to the piece's recorded crossover versions. The 23-second guitar intro doesn't yet reveal what's coming. The arriving main melody sounds at first like a pan flute, but it must be a recorder played by Richard Harvey (of Gryphon), who plays on both Fear of the Dark and The Peacock Party albums. Soft choir soon joins, and then the whole rock combo. I'm strongly reminded of what SKY did with classical pieces some years later, only that the electric guitar is perhaps more central in the bombastic arrangement than on Sky's music averagely. Luckily Giltrap recorded it before Sky's body of work. This is not a bad version, although I definitely prefer the mighty ELP song. It must be said that organ suits much better as the lead instrument than the electric guitar heard here.

'Party Piece' is taken from The Peacock Party. This is a lively, joyful and folky instrumental with kindred spirit to both Yes at their most playful and Gryphon at their most rocking. Harvey's recorder is in the leading role for the main melody. Mike Oldfield's folk pieces from the 70's also have something in common for the atmosphere.

 The Complete Studio Recordings by LED ZEPPELIN album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1993
3.98 | 29 ratings

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The Complete Studio Recordings
Led Zeppelin Prog Related

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Review Nº 593

'The Complete Studio Recordings' is a compilation of Led Zeppelin that was released in 1993. It's a ten compact Box set with the eight Led Zeppelin studio albums, placed in chronological order and digitally remastered, and an expanded version of 'Coda'. This version of 'Coda' included four bonus tracks, which are all previous unreleased tracks, 'Baby Come Home', 'Travelling Riverside Blues', 'White Summer/Black Mountain Side' and 'Hey, Hey, What Can I Do'.

The album's cover depicts the inside structure of a Zeppelin. This Box set also includes a booklet featuring an extended and nice impressive essay by the very well known rock journalist Cameron Crowe and a bunch of photos of the band.

As I've already reviewed all these albums previously on Progarchives, in a more extensive way, I'm not going to do it again. So, if you are interested to know, in more detail, what I wrote about them before, I really invite you to read all those reviews. However, in here, I'm going to write something about them in a more short way. So, of course, I'm not going to analyze them track by track, as I made before, but I'm only going to make a global appreciation of the albums.

'Led Zeppelin': 'Led Zeppelin' is an excellent and a powerful debut album, very strong and well balanced without masterpieces but also without weak points. It's a blues rock oriented album, the band's rawest and most bluesy based studio recording. For a debut, it has a very interesting powerful collection of songs, full of originality and invention.

'Led Zeppelin II': 'Led Zeppelin II' is another excellent album, very well balanced and without weak points too. It has many great songs, especially 'Whole Lotta Love'. On it the band developed the ideas presented on their previous album, with elements of blues and folk music. It's an album that also displays some of the greatest guitar riffs ever.

'Led Zeppelin III': 'Led Zeppelin III' is one of their best and most fine works. It shows a great emphasis on the folk and acoustic sounds. With this album Led Zeppelin shows they were more than a merely conventional rock band and that they could go out into new musical territories. They proved they were one of the best and most complete rock bands.

'Led Zeppelin IV': 'Led Zeppelin IV' is their greatest masterpiece. It was a big commercial and critical success and became as one of the best selling albums worldwide and in one of the best albums ever released till now. It's also considered one of the most important Rock'n'Roll albums ever. It represents the band's commercial and artistic peak.

'Houses Of The Holy': 'Houses Of The Holy' was their first album to be officially titled with a real name. It was also their first album to be composed completely by original material. We can say this album represents a musical turning point for Led Zeppelin, as they began to use more layering and production techniques in recording their songs. In my humble opinion, this is their most underrated album of their first six studio albums and it's one of my favourites too.

'Physical Graffiti': 'Physical Graffiti' contains new songs and some left over songs from their previous sessions. It's their most ambitious album that covers a vast amount of musical territory. It's a real tour the force and a perfect test to Led Zeppelin's musical versatility. 'Physical Graffiti' touches all the bases. There are blues, heavy ballads, acoustic songs, hard rock and some Eastern musical influences, for instance on 'Kashmir' that is the best track on the album.

'Presence': 'Presence' represents a return of the band to the hard rock but on a new level of complexity. It also marked a change to a bit less elaborate sound. While the previous albums contained hard rock with acoustic ballads, 'Presence' is the only album that uses no keyboards and no acoustic tracks. It became as the forgotten Led Zeppelin album. It's unfair because it's an excellent album and has one of the best tracks from the band 'Achilles Last Stand'.

'In Through The Out Door': 'In Through The Out Door' represents a significant departure from anything that had come before. It marks a mix of sounds and rhythms from different styles. It has a great use of keyboards and synthesizers by Jones beyond the usual chords of Page. It's the most controversial, unloved and misunderstood album of the band.

'Coda': 'Coda' consists of unreleased leftovers and that must should only purchased after obtaining all the band's original studio albums. It's not Led Zeppelin's best musical work, despite being not a bad album. It's non-essential, but as a posthumous work for Bonham, it's a very emotional album. It's an album for fans and to complete discographies.

Conclusion: 'The Complete Studio Recordings' represents, in a certain way, the final testimony of one of the greatest Rock'n'Roll bands. Of course, as many other Box sets with the same purposes, the interest in purchase compilations like this is very subjective when we have all the original albums from the band. The only thing really new that we can get on this Box set is the four bonus tracks on 'Coda'. It's true they're very impressive but to buy a compilation so expensive like this only because of four tracks is completely insane. So, this compilation is for people who don't want to spend many time and patience looking for every album individually. Anyway, this is an excellent compilation album.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 Oxymore by JARRE, JEAN-MICHEL album cover Studio Album, 2022
4.06 | 8 ratings

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Oxymore
Jean-Michel Jarre Prog Related

Review by Heart of the Matter

4 stars Five years after the passing of Pierre Henry, his mentor and teacher during his tenure with the Groupe de Recherche Musical, Jarre is dedicating now his twenty-second studio album to pay homage to this man (certainly one fundamental pioneer in the development of the electroacustic approach to avant-garde music in the 20th Century), and this is done by a renovated resort to a lot of musique concrète (the brainchild of Henry) elements.

The resultating trip not only transcends the vast sphere of the electronica we got accustomed to expect from Jarre over the years, but also tread a new path, mixing purely electronic with electro-acoustic materials, such as modulated voices, and all sorts of real-world physical noises heavily treated with electronic effects (including reverb) and organically integrated in the seemingly endless flow and loop of beats, sequences and mutating rythm patterns, in order to produce a crepitating, palpitating cosmos, successively constructed and then frayed at its seams.

But there is more than just rythms and effects here: there is an acute sense of harmony and melodic design taking place as a whole that evolves and grows (helped by "natural" processed sounds of breathe, air, water, etc) into some kind of immensely heavy dome and archs, the sonic analogs to the ones in the album cover picture. That demented architecture (probably our world's own) is immense and infinitely claustrophobic at the same time, in symmetric opposition with the cover picture of Jarre's debut Oxygène, where the world appears scorched and peeled, but still open to space.

If you wish to put on your EVA suit and go out there, you may enjoy the trip, as I did.

 Axolotl Eyes (with Kumo) by SCHMIDT, IRMIN album cover Studio Album, 2008
5.00 | 1 ratings

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Axolotl Eyes (with Kumo)
Irmin Schmidt Prog Related

Review by Lewian
Prog Reviewer

— First review of this album —
5 stars Irmin continues his collaboration with Kumo alias Jono Podmore here. As opposed to the earlier release Masters of Confusion, this one is not 100% instrumental but comes with guest vocals by Paul J. Fredericks on three tracks. Fredericks adds a nice leftfield element with his uncoventional singing, sometimes strongly electronically manipulated. This is most prominent on Kick on the Floods, which in my view would've worked as a single even though it wasn't released as one. On the title track vocals are credited but you have to look hard for them. Raketenstadt once more delivers some catchiness, with the vocals interacting nicely with the rhythmic electronics.

This album has just such an elegant cool electronic sound, using the rich possibilities for sampling and manipulation that were available in the 2000s. Irmin and Kumo just went more "all in" here with the electronic experimentation than on Masters of Confusion, and also the electronic rhythms swing and vibrate some more. At the same time there is still the piano and the occasional trumpet, making for a fascinating contrast. On top of this, there is great variety in the tracks, from the straight but mysterious Kick on the Floods over the sharp bodily Raketenstadt, the aptly named relaxed Drifting Days Crime Pays, the experimental out there sound collage Umbilicus Clear harking back to Irmin's education as avantgarde composer. The title track comes closest to the strongly accented rhythms of Masters of Confusion, Meteor Infected is a creative space electronic track, and the Etrurian Waltz enriches Irmin's love for the piano waltz with some surprising sounds, and provides the crescendo toward the end that this album deserves.

Creatively this is probably the peak of Irmin's work. It may not appeal to some because of the techno impact, but for me it's strong and impressive. 4.7 stars. Some versions come with a DVD of a sound and film installation that was on display in London's Barbican. This is pretty long and experimental and meant for ambience (I think it was on a Barbican wall while everyone would go along with their business, it wasn't an autonomous performance), meaning that you may not find it worthwhile to go through the whole length of this with full concentration, but it is great at what it is, a nice and fascinating bonus.

 Heroes by BOWIE, DAVID album cover Studio Album, 1977
4.09 | 453 ratings

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Heroes
David Bowie Prog Related

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Review Nº 590

"Heroes" is the twelfth studio album of David Bowie and that was released in 1977, in the same year of his previous album, "Low". This is his second studio album from his "Berlin Trilogy", with the collaboration of Brian Eno. The others are "Low" and "Lodger". It developed further the sound of "Low". Of the three albums, it was the most befitting of the appellation Berlin, being the only one wholly recorded there. This is also considered one of his best musical works.

"Heroes" has ten tracks. All songs were written by David Bowie, except "Heroes", "Moos Garden" and "Neukoln", all written by David Bowie and Brian Eno, and "The Secret Life Of Arabia" written by David Bowie and Carlos Alomar. The first track "Beauty And The Beast" was issued as the second single taken from this album. It's a song with a disjointed musical combination of piano, guitar, electronics and voice. It features Robert Fripp on lead guitar and the synthesizer work by Brian Eno. This is a great song to open the album and is brilliantly performed. The second track "Joe The Lion" features also the lead guitar of Robert Fripp. The song is a tribute to the American performance artist Chris Barden, who became famous for him have be nailed to a Volkswagen in 1974. This is a very disjointed music track, which demonstrates clearly the influence of German krautrock music on the album. The third track is the title track "Heroes". It was the song chosen to be released as the first single of the album. It remains as one of the best and most known songs of Bowie and became also one of his most covered songs. It's a classic story of two lovers who meet and come together in the shadow of the Berlin Wall, known in history as the "Wall of Shame". It's the great highlight of the album and is also one of the highlights of all Bowie's musical career, a truly classic Bowie's song. The fourth track "Sons Of The Silent Age" is, according to Eno, the only song of the album composed prior to the recording sessions, and it could have been the title for the album. It's a most dark and oppressive song than the previous, with a delicious saxophone work. This is a fine song very enjoyable to hear. The fifth track "Blackout" is a very schizophrenic song with several chaotic and noisy musical moments. It returns to the musical style of the tracks 1 and 2, but with more aggressiveness and musical tension. It has a huge combination of driving beat, great guitar and synthesizers sequences, and frantic vocals. The sixth track "V-2 Schneider" was the song of the album chosen to be released as the B side of the single "Heroes". It was a tribute to Florian Schneider, the co-founder of Kraftwerk and is also a reference to the V-2, a German rocket in WW II. It's an excellent track clearly influenced by the electronic music, especially the music of Kraftwerk. The seventh track "Sense Of Doubt" is the first instrumental track that continuous the influence of electronic and krautrock music. It was the song chosen to be released as the B side of the single "Beauty And The Beast". This is one the darkest, desperate, emotional and oppressive tracks on the album. It represents one of my favourite musical moments too. The eighth track "Moss Garden" is the second instrumental track on the album. It features Bowie playing a koto, a traditional Japanese string instrument. This is a very beautiful piece of music, very tranquil and ethereal, that contrasts with the preceding track. It represents a perfect fusion between the traditional and the electronic music. The ninth track "Neukoln" is the third and last instrumental track on the album. This is another magnificent track with a special Arabian touch. Neukoln is a district of Berlin and the music can reflects, in part, the ruthlessness of the Turkish immigrants who made up a large portion of the area's population. The final section features a wonderful saxophone performance that can transmit to us a touching desperate call. The tenth and last track "The Secret Life Of Arabia" is a more traditional Bowie's song with an exotic mixture of eastern, jazz and funky. Despite be a good song, it breaks, in a certain way, the musical ambience on the album. So, it closes the album, somehow, in a strange way. I rader really would prefer that "Neukoln" was the last song on the album. If that had happened, it would have been the perfect ending to the album.

Conclusion: "Heroes" is, definitely, a great album and is one of the best David Bowie's albums. It developed even further the sound of "Low" and perfectly shows the recent new discoveries of the electronic soundscapes by Bowie, which transport his musical world to a new and darker musical territory. "Heroes" is a great art rock album that captures perfectly the spirit of the electronic and krautrock music and captures also the age of the new wave music. It also shows strongly the great Brian Eno's musical influence all over the album, especially on the second side of the album. Everybody knows the huge influence of Eno in the new wave music, especially in bands like Ultravox. Finally, we can't forget the participation of Robert Fripp, on lead guitar duties, complementing perfectly well Carlos Alomar. We can't also forget the musical collaboration between Fripp and Eno, on an ambient musical project, with the albums "(No Pussyfooting)" and "Evening Star". So, to have Fripp and Eno on a single Bowie's album is a remarkable thing, indeed.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 Filmmusik Anthology Volume 1, 2 & 3 (Soundtracks 1978-1993) by SCHMIDT, IRMIN album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1994
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Filmmusik Anthology Volume 1, 2 & 3 (Soundtracks 1978-1993)
Irmin Schmidt Prog Related

Review by Lewian
Prog Reviewer

— First review of this album —
3 stars This is a big pile of stuff, collecting the majority of Irmin's original Filmmusik Vol. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and Rote Erde plus the single "Roll On Euphrates" from "Musk at Dusk". If I don't miss anything, there are also around 5 tracks that are not on any original album (but may be on other samplers). These are not overly spectacular and not a major reason to buy this. As should be expected with more than 216 minutes of soundtrack music, it's a bit hit and miss, and the order does not necessarily follow a "musical logic" (particularly it doesn't start off very strongly) ), but I generally agree with what has been selected from the original albums for inclusion and exclusion, so you here have all the material you need to appreciate these works. I'm not generally keen on reviewing samplers but I review this one because it's the major way to actually get hold of the earlier film music albums that I believe otherwise are no longer available. I give this three stars because that's just fair given the amount of second class material, but remember it's very very long and there is certainly a lot of 4 and even 5 stars material to discover here (see reviews of original albums for more information).
 The John Renbourn Group: A Maid in Bedlam by RENBOURN, JOHN album cover Studio Album, 1977
3.28 | 6 ratings

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The John Renbourn Group: A Maid in Bedlam
John Renbourn Prog Related

Review by Matti
Prog Reviewer

3 stars After the 1973 breakup of the legendary British Folk Rock band PENTANGLE, the other guitarist of them, John Renbourn, was in no hurry to release further solo albums. In 1976 came the guitar-only album The Hermit, and one year later this work poignantly credited to The John Renbourn Group. What's especially delightful about A Maid in Bedlam is the presence of the Pentangle songbird Jacqui McShee. Other members are Tony Roberts on vocals, flute, recorder, piccolo and oboe, Sue Draheim on fiddle and vocals and Keshave Sathe on tabla and finger cymbals.

This is a purebred Folk album, with pieces of traditional origins. Tabla is of course an Eastern percussion instrument, but it hardly distances the music from the Renaissance era oriented Englishness. The opener 'Black Waterside' is a traditional tune recorded by several British folk artists. Jacqui's lead vocals flow as beautifully as ever, and the instrumentation has a sincere Old Music feel to it, with especially recorder catching the ear. 'Nacht Tanz / Shaeffertanz' is a joyful, danceable instrumental. You can almost see a Renaissance faire in your mind. The album's title track has a nice melody very typical for traditional songs focusing on telling a story. Next comes another instrumental medley, credited to some Hans Neuseidler, followed by a well known trad. tune 'John Barleycorn'. This orthodox folk version is quite far from the Traffic version which I admit preferring. 'Reynardine' is also interpreted by many folk rock artists. Male backing vocals accompany Jacqui. It is however her solo vocal numbers such as 'My Johnny Was a Shoemaker' that will most please me and undoubtedly other Pentangle listeners. On 'Death and the Lady' Jacqui is only a bit later joining male voices.

The closing number 'Talk About Suffering' is an a cappella performance for four voices, although some fiddle is added on the background -- for no point if you ask me. Slightly resembling Steeleye Span's 'Gaudete', this is among the highlights on a rather brief and, well, a bit single-minded album lacking of happy surprises in either the sound or the song selection. But if you want to have some real Renaissance era Folk music without a rock flavour for change, and are fond of Jacqui McShee's crsytalline voice, this album with a beautiful cover art is surely worth having.

 Masters of Confusion (with Kumo) by SCHMIDT, IRMIN album cover Studio Album, 2001
4.00 | 1 ratings

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Masters of Confusion (with Kumo)
Irmin Schmidt Prog Related

Review by Lewian
Prog Reviewer

— First review of this album —
4 stars This album takes a quite different direction from most of Irmin's catalogue up to now. The Toy Planet album is probably the closest out of those he had done so far. Instead of the usual guest musicians, this one is a collaboration with Kumo alias Jono Podmore, who does electronics here, and the album has a far more electronic character than the previous ones. It is a very rhythm oriented album, and Kumo's technoid rhythms will take some getting used to for prog listeners who are used to real drummers and the likes of Jaki Liebezeit and Trilok Gurtu on Irmin's previous albums.

The electronic rhythms go through almost all the album dominantly, some of them are straight 4/4, but there are some more subtle ones thrown in. Fledermenschen is particularly fascinating in this respect with some polyrhythmic experiments, and is actually my favourite track. The second strong element on most tracks is Irmin's piano, sometimes played in a sharp rhythmic staccato manner. Elsewhere, in Las Blumas del Buho the dramatic piano takes its inspiration from Latin America; this one reminds me of some of the longer piano driven pieces on earlier albums. And then there is synthesizer and electronic sounds. In fact, despite the lack of other instruments, the sound world created here is pretty rich, there are also more lyrical and some mysterious moments, and there's something new to discover in every track, even though there is the usual recycling of the odd motif from earlier albums, most clearly in Gentle into that Night. I wonder whether Irmin intends this to be something of his trademark as this goes through more or less his whole catalogue.

All in all there is quite some strong material here and I find the overall approach quite fascinating. The smooth sound and the routine approach of the two professional composers may distract a bit from how much is hidden here, as one can listen fairly easily through the whole album superficially, sticking to the rhythmic surface, in which case it may not make that much of an impression. Anyway, this is a very original album and worth exploring. 4.0 stars.

 Nouveau Calls by WISHBONE ASH album cover Studio Album, 1987
2.93 | 77 ratings

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Nouveau Calls
Wishbone Ash Prog Related

Review by Greta007

4 stars A highly enjoyable and melodic album with good musicianship. The band maintained its integrity in the pop-dominated 1980s, a time when prog and rock bands tended to flounder.

Miles Copeland produced a number of these instrumental albums on his No Speak label. The music is generally not prog, but instrumental rock, with most tracks in the 3-4 minute range. There's many surf rock motifs backed by funky, 80s style rhythms. Poor Steve Upton was playing four on the floor for much of the first half of the album, and he can do so much more. But that was the 80s, wasn't it?

The second half of the album is more Wishbone Ash-y, more 70s. Tunes like The Spirit Flies Free and Something's Happening in Room 602 are recognisably WA tunes. Johnny Left Home Without It is probably the most proggy track, with some tasty textures and variations. Real Guitars Have Wings brings back the band's famous twin guitar harmonies.

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Prog Related bands/artists list

Bands/Artists Country
10CC United Kingdom
14 BIS Brazil
801 United Kingdom
ABEDUL Spain
ABSOLUUTTINEN NOLLAPISTE Finland
ACIDENTE Brazil
AERODROM Yugoslavia
AGNUS DEI Austria
DON AIREY United Kingdom
ALBERO MOTORE Italy
ALWAYS ALMOST United States
THE AMBER LIGHT Germany
AMBROSIA United States
JON ANDERSON United Kingdom
ARIEL Australia
ASIA United Kingdom
ATLANTIS United States
PETER BARDENS United Kingdom
SYD BARRETT United Kingdom
LUCIO BATTISTI Italy
BEAU DOMMAGE Canada
BIJELO DUGME Yugoslavia
BLACK SABBATH United Kingdom
BLACKFIELD Multi-National
BLODWYN PIG United Kingdom
BLUE ÖYSTER CULT United States
JEAN-PASCAL BOFFO France
THE BOLLENBERG EXPERIENCE Belgium
DAVID BOWIE United Kingdom
BRAM STOKER United Kingdom
BUCKETHEAD United States
BUDGIE United Kingdom
BYZANTIUM United Kingdom
JOHN CALE United Kingdom
CARNEGIE United States
CASA DAS MÁQUINAS Brazil
THE CHURCH Australia
CITY Germany
CITY BOY United Kingdom
CLOUDS United Kingdom
STEWART COPELAND United States
CRUACHAN Ireland
MARTIN DARVILL & FRIENDS United Kingdom
BRIAN DAVISON'S EVERY WHICH WAY United Kingdom
FABRIZIO DE ANDRÉ Italy
CHRISTIAN DÉCAMPS France
DEUS Belgium
DIABOLUS United Kingdom
DIR EN GREY Japan
DRAGON New Zealand
DREAMLAND United States
ER. J. ORCHESTRA Ukraine
ESQUIRE United Kingdom
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HELP YOURSELF United Kingdom
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NOW United States
OFFENBACH Canada
OM ART FORMATION Bulgaria
OYSTERHEAD United States
JIMMY PAGE - ROBERT PLANT United Kingdom
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DAVORIN POPOVIć Yugoslavia
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RAINBOW Multi-National
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SIGNS OF ONE Canada
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ZON Canada

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