prog Archive

Album Review: Yes – Magnification

It’s little overstatement to point out that by 2000, most listeners had given up on Yes. The group had its commercial and creative apex through a large portion of the 1970s, but stumbled into the 80s (Drama was an excellent album that has worn quite well, but at the time it confused and divided fans).

Album Review: Days Between Stations – In Extremis

I truly mean no disrespect to the man, but experience has taught me not to get too excited about any musical project that involves Billy Sherwood. He’s clearly a talented musician: skilled and appealing on many instruments including guitar, keyboards and drums, he’s also a fine singer, and skilled at production, engineering, songwriting and so

Album Review: Greg Lake — Songs of a Lifetime

It’s been about a year since I made the trip to Durham NC to see Greg Lake in concert. In the run-up to that performance, I interviewed Greg, and while in the course of our wide-ranging discussion we spoke a bit about the tour, he wished to keep the details mostly under wraps. I knew

Album Review: Captain Beyond — Live in Texas: October 6, 1973

Way back in my high school days, I developed an abiding interest that developed into a lifelong hobby. Though these days its intensity level is much lower than, say, a decade ago, my fascination with bootleg recordings remains. I have long believed that bootlegs, or ROIOs (recordings of illegitimate / indeterminate origin) can and often

Album Review: Nektar – Remember the Future

Album reissues can be funny things. Not haha-funny, but perplexing-funny. Take, for example, the case of Nektar’s breakthrough 1973 LP Remember the Future. Their most commercially successful album, it ranks among their best and was released amidst a string of creative high-water-mark albums. It reached #19 on the Billboard album charts, and is a good

Album Review: Conspiracy – Conspiracy Live

As the sole member of Yes to appear on every single album, Chris Squire has stayed quite busy these last several decades. Though he released but one solo album (1975’s Fish Out of Water), Squire has found time for quite a number of projects outside Yes. One of these is a band called Conspiracy, a

Album Review: Curved Air – Airwaves

Not to take anything away from the impressive achievements of The Police (their dubious 21st century reunion notwithstanding), but it’s long been a source of some amusement among rock historians to point out the band’s pedigree. Though they were (and remain) darlings of the so-called new wave movement of the late 1970s and early 80s,

Album Review: Nektar – Journey to the Centre of the Eye

The history of 1970s rock is littered with also-rans. Even though the pop music landscape of that decade was arguably more varied than today’s (and by “pop” I mean music that could be easily found and heard by the average consumer), the marketplace was dominated by some high-profile acts. And the success of those artists

Album Review: King Crimson – Discipline (40th Anniversary Series Edition)

From their inception in 1969, King Crimson has always been about creating outside-the-box music that challenges (or simply ignores) convention. By the middle of the 1970s, the band had created at least two masterpieces: their debut album In the Court of the Crimson King and 1975’s Red. But after Red – when King Crimson was

Album Review: Unitopia – Covered Mirror Vol. 1: Smooth as Silk

Like any musical genre or subgenre, progressive rock has many varieties within its confines. There’s aggressive, sometimes atonal math-based stuff; there’s brutal prog-metal, there’s retro-prog that tries to recreate the sound and/or vibe of the classic stuff from the 70s. And there’s a melodic, accessible flavor, the kind that makes the charts, albeit rarely. Its