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Cromagnon’s only album: a jumble of sounds, shouts, and one actual song

Depending on one's point of view, Orgasm (later reissued as Cave Rock) is either a ridiculously self-indulgent artifact of the '60s counterculture or an underground gem that was way ahead of its time -- and it's probably a little bit of both. The basic idea behind Cromagnon, an obscure East Coast group led by vocalists Austin Grasmere and Brian Elliot, was psychedelic rock combined with the sticks and stones of prehistoric cavemen, as well as with traces of folk-rock; it's a bizarre concept, certainly, but at times, it works. You can hear the whole crazy album on YouTube, or stick with the most song-like track (featuring bagpipes, tribal beats and some sort of scream-singing), Caledonia, seen here with an unofficial video. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Jul 26, 2014 - 6 comments

Fly the Friendly Stick

Have you ever wondered what a prog metal cover of Gershwin would sound like? Liquid Tension Experiment - Rhapsody in Blue
posted by Rhomboid on Jun 13, 2014 - 36 comments

In reply to your request, please find that I hereby protest

"Nude is a concept album released by English progressive rock band Camel (wiki) in 1981. It was their eighth studio album. The album (lyrics) is based on a true story of a Japanese soldier (Hiroo Onoda) marooned on an island in World War II who doesn't know that the war is over. 'Nude' derives from his family name 'Onoda.'" [more inside]
posted by jbickers on Jan 17, 2014 - 10 comments

Neo-prog tour of British history

The British band Big Big Train, winners of the Breakthrough Award at the 2013 Progressive Music Awards, have a vocalist who sings not unlike Peter Gabriel, and plays flute not unlike Ian Anderson; a hint of ELP in some songs; and a new member who was previously the guitarist for XTC. Non-prog fans may find the band's source matter intriguing: Their recent (double) album, English Electric I and II, features songs about the first scuba diver, Alexander Lambert, and his heroic work during the flooding of the Severn Tunnel in 1880; notorious fine art forger Tom Keating; an 1842 Royal Commission report on the working conditions of children employed in Welsh coal mines; a world-record-setting, 126 m.p.h. run by a steam locomotive in 1938; and a woman named Blanca Huertas, who is the Curator Lepidoptera at London's Natural History Museum.
posted by helpthebear on Nov 30, 2013 - 17 comments

Plus ... tubular bells

Known to millions of Dutch children as the chase music in Bassie en Adriaan, Mike Oldfield's avant garde rock classic Tubular Bells is forty years old this year. Largely a one man creation, with Mike Oldfield himself playing most of the instruments from bass guitar to tubular bells, a small army of friends was assembled for the BBC performance of the album's A side. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse on Oct 12, 2013 - 16 comments

Who says a funk band can't play rock music

“Stylistically, Demon Fuzz’s single album, 1970’s Afreaka!, is hard to pin down. But then, I guess that’s the point. Demon Fuzz went out of their way to keep people guessing; at gigs, they’d let people assume they were a reggae band, only to launch into some African-influenced jazz/rock number. Jaws hit the floor and feet started tapping. “We were different, totally different,” says Demon Fuzz trombonist Clarance Crosdale.” -- Demon Fuzz was a shortlived British, African-Carribean prog rock group that had started life as a soul cover band. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse on Aug 2, 2013 - 10 comments

"People treated it with respect, but didn't particularly enjoy it."

In 1973, The Who released their sixth album, Quadrophenia. The epic double album tells the story of a boy named Jimmy Cooper who deals with mental illness on top of the run-of-the-mill stresses of teen life. But Jimmy Cooper isn't just any London teen.  Jimmy Cooper is a Mod. [more inside]
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey on Jul 29, 2013 - 68 comments

A Solemn Symphony

Minneapolis foursome City of Sound make music that's part Mars Volta, part Death From Above 1979, and all experimental madness, listing influences like Radiohead, Led Zeppelin, and The Beatles. Both their albums, L'Implosion and Creatures, can be heard in full on their Bandcamp page.
posted by cthuljew on Jun 17, 2013 - 6 comments

Six six six is no longer alone.

Genesis, fronted by Peter Gabriel, live in 1973, presented in full 1080p high definition. [more inside]
posted by anazgnos on Mar 2, 2013 - 58 comments

"All the groupies were at the Led Zeppelin concert."

"Prog Rock Brittania" is a BBC documentary about the great (and/or pretentious) bands that made up the UK's contribution to a somewhat controversial musical genre. Direct link seems to be busted, but Youtube saves the day: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9]
posted by bardic on Jan 18, 2013 - 31 comments

Luminol

Luminol, a song by Steven Wilson of Porcupine Tree fame, performed live in Mexico City. 12 minutes long and worth every minute.
posted by Rory Marinich on Dec 13, 2012 - 11 comments

It's a Pink World comin' down

Planet P Project's 1984 release Pink World [1h19m] is a double length post apocalyptic cold war nightmare science fiction concept album. Credits/Lyrics [more inside]
posted by hippybear on Sep 6, 2012 - 18 comments

Thick as a Brick

As foretold by the prophets of Atlantis, before its destruction, a mortal (Dave Weigel of Slate) has come to reveal the true story of Prog Rock. [more inside]
posted by dortmunder on Aug 16, 2012 - 97 comments

A Most Tubular Guy

You might have heard Mike Oldfield playing during the Olympic opening and wondered, "What! Why the heck would Danny Boyle want the Exorcist theme playing at the start of such a grand event!" Oldfield's kept a low profile for years, so you may not remember him as the man who literally launched Virgin Records, one of only three artists to ever knock his #1 record off the charts with another #1 record (the other two being Bob Dylan and the Beatles). But those teenage successes were merely the start of an astonishing career, one full of pop music and prog rock, sci-fi and New Age, film scores and classical orchestrations — not to mention a spot at the start of Kanye West's recent album. His magnum opus, Amarok, is an hour of astonishing sounds and shifting genres which must be heard to be believed. Too overwhelming? Well, there're [more inside]
posted by Rory Marinich on Jul 27, 2012 - 62 comments

Pratt-le

30 years later, Neil Peart breathlessly recounts, track by track, the making of Rush's seminal album Moving Pictures.
posted by Eideteker on Jun 9, 2011 - 29 comments

Starship Trooper, go sailing on by...

Prog Rock! --- Prog Rock! --- Prog Rock! --- Prog Rock! --- Prog Rock! --- Prog Rock! --- Prog Rock! --- Prog Rock! --- ... prog rock? [more inside]
posted by spoobnooble on Jan 16, 2011 - 89 comments

"Canada’s tragically unhip"

The new documentary about their career won a Tribeca audience award, and now, the little power trio from the Great White North has a star on the Hollywood walk of fame. [more inside]
posted by jbickers on Jun 28, 2010 - 75 comments

PROG ROCK SPECIAL - PART 2

Times were tough. Hair was long, complex and strange, and so were the songs. Where were you 35 years ago, and why weren’t you surrounded by stack of keyboards wearing a sequined gown? [more inside]
posted by philip-random on Sep 25, 2009 - 121 comments

RIP Hugh Hopper

RIP Hugh Hopper. [more inside]
posted by jbickers on Jun 11, 2009 - 18 comments

Durn kid. Git off my genre!

In 2006 Nell James was a teenage prog rocker, writing, playing and singing all instruments, and self-producing an album in her bedroom studio that paid homage to 1970s English art rock, a genre that arguably passed its zenith when her parent were in kindergarten. The result, Tempus, received positive reviews in the re-emging prog rock press. Also impressive was her cover/re-arrangement of Gentle Giant's On Reflection. [more inside]
posted by Herodios on Aug 8, 2008 - 15 comments

Original Rush drummer John Rutsey is dead at 55.

Original Rush drummer is John Rutsey dead at 55. Rush was one of the most successful prog rock acts of the 70s and 80s. Much of this success can be attributed to Neil Peart, whose airy, transcendent lyrics and virtuoso drumming in large part defined the band. But there was another drummer--more in the heavy style of John Bonham--who gripped the rhythmic helm on their first album: one John Rutsey. Mr Rutsey left the band early after a diagnosis of diabetes. This month he succumbed to a heart attack, a common complication. Unfortunately, a discursive look at youtube revealed no live footage of Mr Rutsey in action. Here is a pic from his heyday.
posted by zorro astor on May 18, 2008 - 22 comments

The final Cellodown

If you love the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain (and who in their right mind doesn't?) and enjoyed the Japanese version of Smoke on the Water, you might just barely tolerate this. Warning: contains five minutes of repackaged progressivepretentious rock and images of cello-based dorkiness. I gave it 98/100.
posted by wendell on Apr 13, 2008 - 26 comments

Woe is me, my life hard-fated!

Anglo-Finnish artist Sanna Annukka's vibrant, flat design work (especially her Icons series) got me curious about her, well, iconography.

She mentioned The Kalevala previously, the Finnish national epic poem (in Finnish here), a tale of creation and heroism that arguably spurred the Finns to independence from the Russians.

Like so much else epic and awesome, it spawned a '70s prog band, with three albums.
posted by klangklangston on Feb 25, 2008 - 23 comments

A modern-day warrior mean mean stride, today's tom sawyer mean mean pride

Rush Rush is a Canadian rock band comprising bassist, keyboardist, and lead vocalist Gary Lee Weinrib, guitarist Alexander Zivojinovich, and drummer and lyricist Neil Ellwood Peart. Bewitched by Ayn Rand, obsessed by nuclear war and enraptured by cheap science fiction, Rush were role models to geeks everywhere, yearning to be cool, but failing. Still, they rocked, in their own way. [more inside]
posted by psmealey on Oct 15, 2007 - 135 comments

At home he still plays with his organ from time to time

Procol Harum organist wins battle over joint authorship of A Whiter Shade of Pale. Gary Brooker is not amused, but then again it was a Bach ripoff anyway.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Dec 20, 2006 - 31 comments

I'll see your Janis, and raise you an ELP

Emerson, Lake, and Palmer live, at California Jam. (Google video, approx. 53 minutes)
posted by Eideteker on Nov 13, 2006 - 55 comments

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