ProgBlog

Most people have heard of progressive rock (or prog rock, or simply prog) but the great majority of them treat it with mild disdain (at best) or outright hatred (at worst). Most of the criticism is a mindless rejection based on current trends and a misunderstanding of the genre; “dinosaur” is a common term of abuse, neatly parodied by Adrian Belew on King Crimson’s 1994 album Thrak

 

There is an increasing quantity of literature on the subject, ranging from the analytical or academic (Edward Macan, Rocking the Classics; Kevin Holme-Hudson, Progressive Rock Revisited) to the fairly straightforward lists (Charles Snider, The Strawberry Bricks Guide to Progressive Rock.) There are also thousands of fans out there who not only continue to attend concerts, but also contribute to a growing network of fanzines and on-line forums. Fans are even served by Prog, a glossy magazine from Future Publishing now in its ninth year, entirely devoted to prog in all its forms

 

The ProgBlog has been put together to encourage discussion about progressive rock music illustrated by personal observation

 

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ProgBlog DISCovery

The original aim of the blog was to promote discussion about all and any facet of progressive rock but from time to time, bands and musicians contact ProgBlog with new prog-related material that they want to expose to a wider audience; ProgBlog's album of 2017 An Invitation by Amber Foil was one such approach

 

The DISCovery section has been introduced to better serve the requirements of musicians who contact ProgBlog with the aim of increasing the audience for their music; without music there can be no discussion of music. DISCover some new music here

20190503_225046 Da Vinci's Spirit

The ProgBlog Diary

A list of recent past, present and future happenings in the prog world

02 - July 2019

 

 

 

 

Porto Antico Prog Fest 2019 poster Prog100 (1)

6/7/2019 Prog the Forest, The Fiddler’s Elbow, Camden

 

I went along to the Prog the Forest festival at the Fiddler’s Elbow to lend support to the prog and the World Land Trust and was quite blown away by Of Petra who mixed funky grooves with spacey prog, somehow ending up towards the jazz end of the spectrum. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to attend the evening session but it was good to see a decent turn-out in a welcoming venue. The cakes were really good, too!

 

Of Petra, Prog the Forest

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14/7/2019 Rick Wakeman, Royal Festival Hall

 

I made a last-minute decision to attend the last UK performance of Journey to the Centre of the Earth, 45 years after the album was originally recorded in the very same hall, the second of two shows that Wakeman described as ‘a 70th birthday present to himself’. Supported by the English Rock Ensemble with son Adam drafted in to play additional keyboard parts and guitar, the Orion Orchestra and the English Chamber Choir, the set comprised the original recording, the 2012-recorded additional material and a couple of pieces from Return to the Centre of the Earth, seamlessly fitted in to the running order. The performance had not sold out and I managed to acquire a seat in the centre of the front stalls from where the sound and the view were both excellent. I like the original music and I’m a big fan of the orchestration – my seat allowed close examination of the arrangement – but I maintain that the lyrics and singing let the whole concept down. Still, it was an enjoyable piece of musical theatre

 

Rick Wakeman, Royal Festival Hall

Rick Wakeman RFH 140719 (4)

Recent arrivals at ProgBlog Central were primarily sourced from two record stores in Amsterdam, my old favourite Record Mania (Ferdinand Bolstraat 30, close to my hotel) where the Netherlands section was about three times larger than when I was last there, and Zap Records (Paleisstraat 137). I added some classic Dutch and UK prog to my collection, plus a couple of outliers, all on vinyl:  Jan Akkerman – Jan Akkerman (1977); Nobody Can Wait Forever – Alquin (1975); Cunning Stunts – Caravan (1975); To the World of the Future - Earth and Fire (1975); Last of the Jubblies – England (1997); Playing the Fool  Official Live – Gentle Giant (1977); Fear of the Dark – Gordon Giltrap (1978); Introspection – Thijs van Leer (1972); Cords – Synergy (1978); Mental Notes – Split Enz (1975)

Coming up:

 

18/7/2019 Porto Antico Prog Fest, Piazza delle Feste, Genova, Italy

Organised by Genova’s Black Widow Records, this year the festival features four bands, three with historical links to the city: The Story of the New Trolls, LatteMiele 2.0 and Struttura & Forma, plus ex-PFM bassist Giorgio Piazza and his band. Tickets €20

 

Porto Antico Prog Fest 2019

12/8/2019 Poughkeepsie’s well-established prog-folk band The Warp/The Weft will digitally release new album Dead Reckoning with a vinyl edition to follow. They are also gigging around New York state commencing on August 15 at Dogwood Beacon, NY. Details can be found on their Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/TheWarpTheWeft/