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SYMPHONIC PROG

A Progressive Rock Sub-genre


From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Symphonic Prog definition

Symphonic is without doubt the sub-genre that includes†the most bands in Progressive Rock because for many people it's almost synonymous classic Prog, something†easy to understand being that†most of the†classic and/or †pioneer†bands†released music that could be included in this sub-genre, except JETHRO TULL and PINK FLOYD (who still blended some symphonic elements), even KING CRIMSON who very soon expanded their horizons to more experimental music, made their debut with a Symphonic album, "In the Court of the Crimson King" which is a cornerstone in the development of the genre.

The main characteristics of Symphonic are the ones that defined all Progressive Rock: (There's nothing 100% new under the sun) which among others are:
  • Mixture of elements from different genres.
  • Complex time signatures.
  • Lush keyboards.
  • Explorative and intelligent lyrics, in some cases close to fantasy literature, Sci Fi and even political issues.
  • Non commercial approach
  • Longer format of songs

In this specific case the main characteristic is the influence of Classical music (understood as Orchestral works created from the late Gothic to Modern Classical) using normally more complex structure than other related sub-genres like Neo Progressive (That's why sometimes the borderline that divides Symphonic from Neo is so unclear being that is based mostly in a degree of complexity rather than in an evident structural difference)..It is easy to find long keyboard solos reminiscent of Johan Sebastian Bach or melodic works that could have been written by†Handel.

As in any other genre, different Symphonic bands had different approaches to Classical music, for example YES and GENESIS are mainly influenced by the Baroque and Classical periods, while EMERSON LAKE & PALMER has a predilection for post Romantic and modern authors like Mussorgsky, Rimsky Korsakov, Bartok or Ginastera, being†that†their sound†is less melodic and more aggressive.

The peak of the genre starts in 1969 and lasts until the mid/late 70's† (more precisely until the release of A Trick of the Tail), when the genre begins to† blend more mainstream influences that took to the birth of Neo Progressive (a new approach for a new decade).


It†is important to remember that even though the creative peak of Symphonic Progressive†ended before the 80's,†we can find†a†second birth†in the 90's coming from the Scandinavian countries (specially Sweden with ANGLAGARD or PAR LINDH PROJECT) and even bands that still in the 21st Century recreate music from this period like SPOCK'S BEARD or ECHOLYN.

Before ending this short description I feel necessary to say (In order to be strictly accurate) that the term Symphonic is not 100% exact, because†these†bands†very rarely†played symphonies and was†probably used because the music that influenced the genre was†performed by Symphony Orchestras, but†it is†so†widely accepted†by the Progressive Rock community that†would be absurd and futile for†anybody to†attempt a change after so much time.

IvŠn Melgar Morey, Peru 2006



Symphonic Team

Current Team as at 09/07/17

IvŠn Melgar Morey (IvŠn_Melgar_M)
Anton Fritz (SouthSideoftheSky)
RdtProg (Louis)

Symphonic Prog Top Albums


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

4.66 | 4085 ratings
CLOSE TO THE EDGE
Yes
4.63 | 3813 ratings
SELLING ENGLAND BY THE POUND
Genesis
4.60 | 3314 ratings
FOXTROT
Genesis
4.44 | 3226 ratings
FRAGILE
Yes
4.42 | 2887 ratings
NURSERY CRYME
Genesis
4.40 | 2420 ratings
MIRAGE
Camel
4.38 | 2068 ratings
MOONMADNESS
Camel
4.36 | 2786 ratings
RELAYER
Yes
4.38 | 1575 ratings
HYBRIS
ńnglagŚrd
4.35 | 1186 ratings
SI ON AVAIT BESOIN D'UNE CINQUI»ME SAISON
Harmonium
4.29 | 2722 ratings
THE LAMB LIES DOWN ON BROADWAY
Genesis
4.29 | 2611 ratings
THE YES ALBUM
Yes
4.29 | 2094 ratings
THE SNOW GOOSE
Camel
4.27 | 2357 ratings
A TRICK OF THE TAIL
Genesis
4.31 | 1068 ratings
SCHEHERAZADE AND OTHER STORIES
Renaissance
4.24 | 1902 ratings
EMERSON LAKE & PALMER
Emerson Lake & Palmer
4.31 | 793 ratings
DEPOIS DO FIM
Bacamarte
4.48 | 312 ratings
FROM SILENCE TO SOMEWHERE
Wobbler
4.25 | 987 ratings
VILJANS ÷GA
ńnglagŚrd
4.25 | 942 ratings
HAMBURGER CONCERTO
Focus

Symphonic Prog overlooked and obscure gems albums new


Random 4 (reload page for new list) | As selected by the Symphonic Prog experts team

LA MARCHE DES HOMMES
Morse Code
TALES FROM AN ISLAND - IMPRESSIONS FROM RAPA NUI
Blank Manuskript
THE MOST BEAUTIFUL DAY
Exodus
WELCOME TO THE FREAKROOM
Shadow Circus

Latest Symphonic Prog Music Reviews


 The Paris Symphony by LITTLE TRAGEDIES album cover Studio Album, 2009
3.10 | 21 ratings

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The Paris Symphony
Little Tragedies Symphonic Prog

Review by TenYearsAfter

3 stars The Russian progrock formation Little Tragedies was founded in 1994 by composer Gennady Ilyin, a graduate of the St. Petersburg Conservatory. Between 1995 and 2000 Little Tragedies was a trio that consisted of Gennady Ilyin on keyboards, Yuri Skripkin on drums and Oleg Babynin on bass (what a wonderful genuine Russian names!), after a visit to Paris keyboard wizard Gennady got inspired by the awesome Parissian architecture and cultural heritage and started to work out a tribute with Little Tragedies, recorded in 1996 and 1997 and in 2009 released on CD by the French progrock label Musea.

On Little Tragedies their wonderful website I read: "After visiting Paris in April 1995, which impressed Gennady very much, he started working on The Paris Symphony. The climax of this almost 45-minute work is the three-part opus Napoleon which, in a way, is the heel post of the 'symphony: it determines the structure and intonation of the other parts: House Of Invalids, Notre-Dame De Paris, Luxemburg Garden, Montmartre and Triumphal Arch. The major themes of The Paris Symphony are based on the tunes of and allusions to the Catholic Easter worship service in the Notre-Dame Cathedral. The Paris Symphony was played a few times in music schools and concert halls of Kursk, the city were Little Tragedies was born."

The album contains 9 tracks (between 2 and 11 minutes, total time around 56 minutes) delivering mainly bombastic atmospheres, loaded with dazzling and spectacular synthesizer flights and Emersonian Hammond organ runs, supported by a tight and energetic rhythm-section. Only the short composition Moonlight People contains a more mellow atmosphere: dreamy with orchestral keyboards but finally also culminating in bombastic with sensational keyboards. But in general Little Tragedies their music is a winner for the fans of ELP, Trace and Gerard. I am blown away by the majestic church organ in Notre Dame De Paris and Montmartre and the exciting duels between Hammond organ and synthesizer in Romantic Waltz and Relayer, this is virtuosic keyboard driven progrock!

My rating: 3,5 star.

 La Clef Des Songes by PENTACLE album cover Studio Album, 1975
4.02 | 98 ratings

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La Clef Des Songes
Pentacle Symphonic Prog

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Review Nļ 175

Pentacle is a French symphonic progressive rock band formed in 1971 in Belfort, France. They released only one album, their debut studio album "La Clef Des Songes", who was recorded in 1975. It's interesting to mention that their album was produced by Christian Descamps, the vocalist of one of the best and most known French progressive symphonic rock bands of the 70's, Ange. About their music, we can say that it's simple and not very complex, in contrast with some of their contemporarie compatriots. Their music has some influences of Genesis, Moody Blues and of the early sound of King Crimson. The lyrics of the entire album are all in their mother tongue, French.

Pentacle was a band formed by four musicians, Gerard Ruez (lead vocals, electric and acoustic guitars), Claude Menetrier (organ, moog, elka string ensemble and piano), Richard Treiber (bass and acoustic guitar) and Michel Roy (backing vocals and drums).

According to Pentacle, the recording of the band's debut album was earmarked for February 1975 at the Citadelle Studios in BesanÁon. Pentacle's repertoire consisted of six tracks with French words, written mostly by Richard and sung by Gerard. The recordings were made over eight days and were put onto a 16 track tape. As the group didn't have much time to record, they worked from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. every day, sometimes dragging the sessions out till midnight.

Pentacle have decided to call their album "La Clef Des Songes" based in one of the tracks and asked Yvan Campello, who was an amateur painter, to design the art cover of it. Pentacle suggested some ideas and from Yvon's three projects the group chose a drawing of a man suspended in mid-air, superimposed on a surrealistic dreamy background and holding a key in his hands, the key of dreams, surely. The album was released in May 1975 and sold 3.000 copies.

"La Clef Des Songes" has six tracks and my CD version has also three live bonus tracks. The first track "La Clef Des Songes" with music by Menetrier and lyrics by Treiber, who gaves its name to the album, is a good song to open the album. It's a very beautiful song, very energetic and with very good guitar work and is also very well accompanied by nice synthesizer and drumming workings. This is a very interesting track. The second track "Naufrage" with music by Ruez and lyrics by Roy is another very good and interesting song. It's a solid track with a nice keyboard and drumming workings. It has also great electric guitar working and where soft vocals take over. The third track "L'Ame Du Guerrier" with music by Roy and lyrics by Treiber is, in my humble opinion, a better song than the two previous tracks. This is a more progressive song with good development, very dynamic, with good vocal working, and once more, with great guitar job and the organ working is also very good. This is really a very interesting and amazing track. The fourth track "Les Pauvres" with music by Ruez and lyrics by Roy is a pastoral ballad and melodic song with good acoustic and electric guitar workings. It has also a good organ performance. This is a very beautiful song, really. The fifth track "Complot" with music by Menetrier and lyrics by Treiber is a splendid song. This is a very good and melodic track with great keyboards and guitars and where the vocals are very sweet and passionate. This is a song with great instrumental parts and where the final result is great. This is another wonderful track. The sixth and last track "Le Raconteur" with music by Ruez and lyrics by Menetrier is the lengthiest and epic track of the album and represents a great closing for it. This is really a very good song with grandiose, melodic and extraordinary moments. All band's members did fantastic, individual and collective workings, and thus they made of this track one of the highlights of this excellent album.

As usual, I will not make a review of the bonus live tracks of the album. However, I'm going to write some lines about them. Despite the quality of the tape recordings, which aren't properly very good, I was very impressed with the quality of the live performance of the group. In my opinion, the live versions of the songs are great, and in generall, they're better performed than their studio versions, especially the live version of "La Clef Des Songes", which is simply superb.

Conclusion: I must confess that I only just heard of Pentacle on Progarchives, but I'm very glad to have found them. I bought my CD, "La Clef Des Songes", a couple of years ago. So, for me, "La Clef Des Songes" is a great symphonic progressive rock album. It's very well balanced and very beautiful. "La Clef Des Songes" doesn't shame any French progressive rock fan. This is an album that most fans of French symphonic progressive rock will really like, a quartet solid in the vein of Atoll, Ange, Mona Lisa and Pulsar. It's a pity that Pentacle has released only one album. They would have a long and great promising career through the universe of progressive rock music. This is one of the better one-shots around with great arrangements, lush keyboards and a warm spacey atmosphere. Despite some mediocre quality sound of the album, sometimes, the quality of the three bonus live tracks is remarkable. I'm very impressed with it.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 Beyond Reality by MANGROVE album cover Studio Album, 2009
3.59 | 53 ratings

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Beyond Reality
Mangrove Symphonic Prog

Review by TenYearsAfter

4 stars In 2001 they released their first demo-CD entitled Massive Hollowness. Soon after the recording sessions Chris Jonker (a fellow Tron-maniac) became the new keyboardist, a huge asset. In this line-up Mangrove released the album Touch Wood as an own production in 2004, followed by Facing The Sunset in 2005 and the 2-CD Coming Back To Live in 2006 (it contains strong renditions of songs from their 3 studio-albums). Beyond Reality from 2009 was Mangrove their third and unfortunately final effort. I was lucky to witness the band as a support-act for USA band Echolyn and pleasantly surprised about their strong performance. They presented their new album Beyond Reality, by far their most mature effort.

Listening to Beyond Reality I notice how easily Mangrove switches from a bombastic 24-carat symphonic rock sound to a more polished and even song-oriented approach. This reminds me strongly of other Dutch band Kayak their Seventies sound. For example.

A surprising shifting mood from neo-prog to early Floyd with piano, slide-guitar and Hammond organ and finally a compelling symphonic rock sound with vintage keyboards and sensitive guitar in Time Will Tell.

From progressive pop to howling guitar with breathtaking choir-Mellotron drops and a splendid bombastic grand finale featuring all symphonic rock elements in the titletrack.

And from a polished sound with catchy rhythms to another strong grand finale with a strongly build-up guitar solo and lush choir-Mellotron in the final composition Voyager.

But Mangrove also delivers a fine ballad entitled Love And Beyond: sensitive guitar and piano with warm vocals, followed with a slow rhythm featuring howling guitar and floods of Hammond organ.

My best impression of Mangrove is when they are fully playing in the 24-carat symphonic rock tradition. Like the varied and dynamic, IQ-like Reality Fades with omnipresent fat synthesizer flights along delicate classical orchestrations with moving guitar work, a break with a wonderful Hammond and Moog sound and a dreamy part with soaring church organ, what a fantastic composition! And the first track Daydreamer's Nightmare, an epic of 15 minutes: it's layered with shifting moods, breaks and strong musical ideas, it contains a captivating tension between dreamy parts with classical guitar or piano and melancholical vocals and bombastic parts with heavy keyboards and howling guitar runs. The colouring by vintage keyboards (Hammond, Moog and Mellotron) is great and in the end the music culminates into very bombastic with lush keyboards and sensitive electric guitar, I am in Prog Heaven by Mangrove their trademark sound!

In my opinion this Mangrove sounds very tasteful, melodic and accessible. For those reasons it will appeal to a wide progrock audience, 'thumbs up' for this promising Dutch progrock band that unfortunately has disbanded.

 Nutcracker in Fury by AVIVA (AVIVA OMNIBUS) album cover Studio Album, 2008
3.60 | 17 ratings

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Nutcracker in Fury
Aviva (Aviva Omnibus) Symphonic Prog

Review by TenYearsAfter

4 stars In 2007 the progrock world was pleasantly surprised with the instrumental debut album Rokus Tonalis by the Russian musical project Aviva, led by Russian keyboard player Dimitri A. Loukanienko who played Grand piano, keyboards, bass, samples and programmed drums and percussion. The music on Rokus Tonalis has strong echoes from bombastic keyboard driven prog in the vein of ELP and Japanese Gerard featuring a powerful Hammond sound, fluent piano runs and flashy synthesizer flights, very spectacular. The song The Valse At The End Of Times delivers a guest-musician on guitar, he gives a very powerful touch to the music with raw and propulsive guitar work. Some tracks sound quite experimental with soaring keyboards and weird voices. That about the first album.

On his next album Nutracker In A Fury (2008) Dimitri changed the name into Aviva Omnibus and he is accompanied by two guitarists, a bassist/drummer and a second keyboard player who also plays violin.

The sound is similar to his debut-album but even more bombastic and spectacular and the compositions are more elaborate and balanced. I am absolutely delighted about the exciting propulsive rhythms with spectacular work on synthesizer and guitar like in the tracks Overture In Fury (lots of flowing shifting moods, a varied keyboard sound, fiery guitar and sensational synthesizer flights), Dance Of The Tea Giants (very dynamic interplay, sensational sounding keyboard runs and guitar riffs that alternates between prog metal and King Crimson in the Red-era, how propulsive!) and Coda Cold (swinging and propulsive rhythms, ELP-inspired keyboard work and a heavy guitar solo). The track Heavy March includes organ runs that are paying tribute to ELP's Nutrocker (based upon Tschaikovsky's Nutcracker) and exciting bombastic keyboard play and heavy guitar work, simply sensational!

Although it's obvious that Dimitri is inspired by Keith Emerson, he succeeds to sound original with his varied and modern souding keyboards and the use of many samples (like singing African people, steel drums and lots of voices). Some songs sound mellow like Flower Fever (sound collage) and Apotheosis (great final part with sumptuous classical orchestrations). But in general Aviva Omnibus their sound is bombastic with lots of exciting propulsive rhythms and spectacular work on keyboards and guitar.

What a thrill to listen to Nutcracker In A Fury, highly recommended, especially to the many aficionados of keyboard- driven progrock!

 Classic Yes by YES album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1981
3.79 | 174 ratings

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Classic Yes
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Review Nļ 174

'Classic Yes' is a compilation of Yes and was released in 1981. Originally it was released as a single LP with a bonus 7 inch 33 1/3 RPM disc featuring live versions of 'Roundabout' and 'I've Seen All Good People' from 1978. However, this version was taken out of circulation in 2003. The Atlantic Records cassette tape has bonus tracks 'Roundabout' as the last selection on side one and 'I've Seen All Good People' as the last selection on side two. On the remastered CD version of 2004 everything has been compiled onto to the main disc, as on the original cassette version.

'Classic Yes' has nine tracks. The first track 'Heart Of The Sunrise' was released on 'Fragile'. It was written by Anderson, Squire and Bruford. It became as one of the best and most popular tracks played live by them. It's the best track on that album and it binds together the gentle and bombastic atmosphere and the fiery technicality that are portrayed on 'Fragile'. It also shows several aspects of Anderson's great vocal abilities. The second track 'Wonderous Stories' was released on 'Going For The One'. It was written by Anderson and is a typical Anderson's song. It's a beautiful ballad with great vocals and beautiful instrumental parts. It's the smallest song on 'Going For The One' and is fascinating how a band can be able to introduce so much complexity into a so short song. The third track 'Yours Is No Disgrace' was released on 'The Yes Album'. It was written by Anderson, Squire, Howe, Kaye and Bruford and is the first long track made by them. The lyrics are simple but musically we can see the progressivity on their music, especially due to the guitar and keyboard workings. The fourth track 'Starship Trooper' is a song divided into three parts, 'Life Seeker', 'Disillusion' and 'Wurm', and was released on 'The Yes Album'. It was written by Howe. It's another long composition and is another great song of the band, which became a classic of Yes. This is the first musical suite composed by them, absolutely fantastic, with great individual musical performances by all band's members. The fifth track 'Long Distance Runaround' was released on 'Fragile'. It was written by Anderson and is the smallest track on 'Fragile'. It's perhaps, the most charming of all 'Fragile' songs, with Anderson singing, while Howe's guitar and Wakeman's keyboards, marry beautifully together in the mix. The sixth track 'The Fish (Schindleria Praematurus)' was released on 'Fragile'. It's the Squire experience on 'Fragile', where he uses the different sounds on his bass guitar. Who read my review of 'Fragile' knows that I don't like very much of the individual tracks of the band, on that album. The seventh track 'And You And I' is a song divided into four parts 'Cord Of Life', 'Eclipse', 'The Preacher The Teacher' and 'The Apocalypse' and was released on 'Close To The Edge'. It was written by Anderson, Howe, Squire and Bruford. It's a melodious track and is probably the most commercial song on 'Close To The Edge'. It's shorter than the title track of that album, but it still has 10 minutes. It's a different piece on 'Close To The Edge' and serves an excellent position as a middle piece, relying less in virtuosity and more on musical atmosphere. The eighth track 'Roundabout' was released on 'Fragile'. But, the version on this compilation is a live version recorded at Oakland's Coliseum, San Francisco, California, USA, in 1978. It was written by Anderson and Howe and became as one of the best known tracks of Yes. This is one of the most played live pieces of Yes, with several versions on diverse live albums. An edited version was released as the A side on a single, with 'Long Distance Runaround' as the B side. It represents the new, collective and more inventive sound of the group, never heard before, and shows the musical power of Yes. The ninth track 'I've Seen All Good People' is a song divided into two parts 'Your Move' and 'All Good People' and was released on 'The Yes Album'. But, the version on this compilation is also a live version, but this time, it was recorded at the Empire Pool, Wembley, London, UK, in 1978. It was written by Anderson and Squire. This is also a classic composition of Yes, very well known, and it remains a standard of those days. It's another brilliant song that explores a vast musical world with great progressivity. It has two distinct musical parts, one more calm and acoustic and the other more rock and aggressive. However, the song shows a perfect balance between both parts of the track.

Conclusion: 'Classic Yes' is a very different compilation of 'Yesterdays', their debut compilation. While 'Yesterdays' has only songs from their first two albums, 'Yes' and 'Time And A Word', 'Classic Yes' has songs from 'Fragile', 'Going For The One', 'The Yes Album' and 'Close To The Edge'. So, while 'Yesterdays' represents the sound of a band giving their first steps, 'Classic Yes' represents the sound of a mature band, with tracks from their four best albums at that time. It has some of the best tracks ever composed by them with the exception of 'The Fish (Schindleria Praematurus)'. So, as I rated 'Yesterdays' with 3 stars, it would be fair that I rated 'Classic Yes' with four stars. However, this is a compilation album and despite 'Classic Yes' be an excellent compilation, perfectly representative of the music of Yes in those times, a compilation never can substitute the original albums. So, it's good but non essential.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

 Progeny: Highlights From Seventy-Two by YES album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2015
4.06 | 42 ratings

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Progeny: Highlights From Seventy-Two
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by 10string

5 stars Yes.. why five stars? Well, I was reluctant to get this box and spend my hard earned money at first, especially since Yes in not known for being an "improvisation" band, but, since I had a one hour daily commute and had installed a big subwoofer which rattled all of the car whole playing Prog (try that to surprise people!), I decided to take the plunge.. And.. whaddayaknow??? This was worth it.. yes, Yes used to improvise quite a lot...mind you , for the normal listener it might not sound like it, but for the decades old fan, this is a treat!!!!! They had to improvise sometimes because of the faulty equipment, but , all of these performances were different from each other, some way more than others...especially the grand "Yours is no disgrace" the Yessongs' version is included in here , albeit in its unedited and remixed (it IS a new/different mix!) form.. I won't tell you on which disc it is, but prepare yourself.... I like the clean sound which was achieves in spite of the technical differences between the different tapes, so yes, it is essential listening to all Yes fans so they can see how great they were in their prime...
 Topographic Drama: Live Across America by YES album cover Live, 2017
3.81 | 27 ratings

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Topographic Drama: Live Across America
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

4 stars Dramatic tales

Topographic Drama is the latest live offering from Yes, and the first one recorded after the tragic loss of Chris Squire. Like the title implies, the set focuses on material from Tales From Topographic Oceans and Drama. In the case of Drama, the entire album is performed, and is for me the highlight of this double CD/triple LP. Drama is one of my favourite Yes albums, and songs from this album have rarely been played live or featured on live records. Given that Geoff Downes is now back in the band, Drama was an obvious choice among albums to be performed in its entirety, much more so than the older albums that were featured on the two Like It Is releases. Also, vocalist Jon Davison's voice compares better to Trevor Horn's than to that of Jon Anderson, adding further weight to Drama being the perfect choice to get the full live treatment. The result is strong, with Billy Sherwood doing a fantasic job, nailing Squire's parts and backing vocals.

When it comes to Tales From Topographic Oceans, not the whole album is included, but more than half of it is, with The Revealing Science Of God and Ritual in full, with Leaves Of Green from The Ancient in between. These versions are strong, and it is especially interesting to hear Downes' take on Wakeman's parts.

The rest of the songs have been done a vast number of times, but the band is a well-oiled machine and these versions sound great. Overall, Topographic Drama is a better live album than either of the Like It Is albums, and also better than In the Present, making this the best Yes live album in some time. Also from a visual perspective it is a nice one, with a lovely Roger Dean art work.

 Ouroboros by KOTEBEL album cover Studio Album, 2009
3.96 | 113 ratings

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Ouroboros
Kotebel Symphonic Prog

Review by TenYearsAfter

4 stars The Spanish progrock band Kotobel prooves that almost 40 years after the birth of the progressive rock, bands are still able to make progressive rock in the true meaning of the word!' In 2017 Kotebel released their latest (7th) album entitled Cosmology , this is a look at their fifth, my favourite one, entitled Ouroboros.

Well, from the very first moment I am absolutely delighted about Ouroboros and every listening session I got more excited, what an excellent blend of symphonic rock and jazzrock (with some avant-garde sidesteps)! The six studio tracks contain very inventive arrangements (evoking the great spirit of Gentle Giant) with a lot of tension and dynamics, the interplay between the musicians is awesome and we can enjoy many strong musical ideas. The powerful and propulsive rhythm-section, fiery electric guitar and majestic violin-Mellotron waves remind me of 1974-era King Crimson. But Kotebel sounds less dark and aggressive, more in the vein of the King Crimson inspired bands that emerged in Sweden in the Nineties like Anglagard, Anekdoten and White Willow. On this new album I would like to emphasize the ingredients that in my opinion makes listening to Ouroboros to such a captivating musical experience. First the excellent interplay between the musicians, second the huge tension between the guitar and the keyboards and third the exciting breaks, build-ups, accellarations and shifting moods. Never a dull moment. The one moment a swinging rhythm with powerful bass and fiery electric guitar or an intro with tender Grand piano and sensitive electric guitar. The other moment a tight rhythm with powerful jazz rock oriented guitar and propulsive drum beats. Or from a splendid build-up from dreamy with xylophone, acoustic guitar and choir-Mellotron to bombastic with heavy work on drums, guitar and keyboards. The focus on this album is a bit more on the interplay between the harder-edged guitar and the energetic and dynamic rhythm-section. But I would like to mention the outstanding way the two keyboard players colour the compositions: from tender Grand piano, a soaring strings sound, ominous violin-Mellotron waves, spacey synthesizer sounds and impressive choir-Mellotron eruptions to spectacular synthesizer flights, sparkling piano and lush violin-Mellotron waves. Especially in the short track Legal Identity V1.5 I am blown away by the virtuosic interplay between the swinging piano and majestic church-organ-like sound. This CD ends with the long (around 16 minutes) and varied live bonus track entitled Mysticae Visiones (recorded at the Portuguese Gouveia Festival in 2007) featuring singer Carolina Prieto with her high pitched voice along lots of variety and strong solos on guitar and keyboards.

What a fantastic new album, check out their website to listen to extracts of this exciting and captivating album!

For those who want to discover more of the captivating and overlooked Spanish progressive rock, here are my recommendations (from neo-prog and fusion to symphonic rock and Rock Andaluz).

The compilations Rockandalus (1-CD), Duende Electrico (2-CD) Hijos Del Agobio Y Del Dolor (2-CD + DVD).

The collaboration of flamenco guitarists with progrock musicians by Juan Martin - Picasso Portraits (featuring Simon Phillips, Tony Hymas and Ian Mosley), Sabicas - Rock Encounter With Joe Beck (featuring Tony Levin) and Diego De Moron - Same (with members from Triana and Granada).

Rock Andaluz bands Triana, Iman, Mezquita, Azahar, Medina Azahara, Cai, Alameda and Guadalquivir.

And Spanish prog bands (past and present) Iceberg, Granada, Itoiz, Fusioon, PI2, Bijou, Dr. No, Senogul, Taifa, Albatros and The Paco De Lucia Sextet (awesome prog folk). Muchas alegrias!

 Beyond The Clear Air by MIDAS album cover Studio Album, 1988
4.03 | 32 ratings

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Beyond The Clear Air
Midas Symphonic Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars This is a solid Japanese symphonic prog offering which, though hailing from the 1980s, feels more like a continuation of the classically-influenced 1970s prog styles than it does as part of the then-contemporary neo-prog movement. Eishyo Lynn's piano and synthesiser work has a stately, refined tone to it which lends a certain bombast and gravitas to proceedings.

However, the band's real secret weapon is Eigo Utoh; without Utoh, they'd be a perfectly competent power trio in the ELP synths/bass/drums mode, but with Utoh's violin work and lead vocals go the extra mile in giving the band their own distinctive character which saves them from being a mere nostalgia act.

 Fly From Here - Return Trip by YES album cover Studio Album, 2018
2.55 | 20 ratings

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Fly From Here - Return Trip
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by mitarai_panda

2 stars The Yes band released a re-recorded album called "Fly From Here - Return Trip" this year, reprinting "Fly From Here" in 2011. Although there are some classic pre-rock bands performing re-records of previous works, such as Camel re-recording the classic snow geese, it is good to choose a good one! But I really can't figure out why I chose this general work. Even though the later works in the middle of yes are popular after the popularity, Fly From Here is already very audible as their penultimate studio album. In particular, the Fly From Here suite can also be considered a return to the light, but overall it is only a half-medium Samsung. There was no major change in this re-recording, just adding an unreleased song called Don't Take No for an Answer, which was very popular. Although the feeling of symphony was still there, it was only 4 minutes in length. It also means that repeating the melody is really uninteresting. If you want to score this song, you can only give it to Samsung, and the entire Return Trip can give Samsung half, but I feel that I need to resist this kind of perfunctory. Samsung is not recommended.
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Symphonic Prog bands/artists list

Bands/Artists Country
21. PERON Turkey
5BRIDGES Netherlands
7 OCEAN Belarus
ABBHAMA Indonesia
ABSTRACTION LAYER Brazil
ACCENT Romania
ACHE Denmark
ACUITY United States
AD ASTRA United States
ADVENTURE Norway
AETHER Brazil
AFTER CRYING Hungary
AFTER THE FIRE United Kingdom
AGNUS Argentina
AGNUS GRAAL Brazil
AIRLORD New Zealand
AJALON United States
AKACIA United States
ALAMEDA Spain
ALASKA United States
ALBATROSS United States
ALMS Spain
ALPHA CENTAURY France
ALPHA III Brazil
ALTER ECHO Sweden
LEON ALVARADO United States
SERGIO ALVAREZ Argentina
AMAGRAMA Argentina
AMENOPHIS Germany
AMOS KEY Germany
ANABIS Germany
ANCIENT VISION United States
ANDERSON BRUFORD WAKEMAN HOWE United Kingdom
ANDERSON/STOLT Multi-National
ANGE France
ANGIPATCH France
ńNGLAGŇRD Sweden
ANIMA Argentina
ANIMA DOMINUM Brazil
ANIMA MORTE Sweden
ANIMA MUNDI Cuba
ANOXIE France
ANTARES Germany
ANYONE'S DAUGHTER Germany
APH…LANDRA France
APHRODITE'S CHILD Greece
APOCALYPSE Brazil
AQUAPLANAGE United Kingdom
ARABESQUE United States
ARACHNOID France
ARCABUZ Spain
ARION Brazil
ARS NOVA (JAP) Japan
ARS PRO VITA Brazil
ART IN AMERICA United States
ASA DE LUZ Brazil
ASIA MINOR Turkey
ASTRň United States
ASTURCON Spain
ATILA Spain
ATLANTIS PHILHARMONIC United States
ATLAS Sweden
ATMOSPHERA Israel
ATOLL France
AUTUMN United Kingdom
AUTUMN BREEZE Sweden
AVIVA (AVIVA OMNIBUS) Russia
AXCRAFT United States
AZABACHE Spain
BABYLON United States
BACAMARTE Brazil
BANAAU Italy
BANANA Argentina
BANZAI Belgium
ZELJKO BEBEK AND PODIUM Yugoslavia
BEGGARS OPERA United Kingdom
ROBERT BERIAU Canada
ED BERNARD Canada
BLACK SEPTEMBER United States
BLAKULLA Sweden
BLANK MANUSKRIPT Austria
BLEZQI ZATSAZ Brazil
BLUE SHIFT United States
TOMAS BODIN Sweden
BONDAR & WISE United States
BOX OF SHAMANS United States
BRIMSTONE United States
BURNING CANDLE Germany
BUSKER Canada
CAFEINE France
CAI Spain
CAIRO United States
CAJA DE PANDORA Mexico
CAL Spain
CAMEL United Kingdom
LOS CANARIOS Spain
CANNABIS INDIA Germany
CARAVELA ESCARLATE Brazil
ALEX CARPANI BAND Italy
CAST Mexico
CATHEDRAL United States
CELLAR NOISE Italy
CHAKRA United States
CHALCEDONY United Kingdom
CHAOS CODE United States
CHRONOS MUNDI Brazil
JOS… CID Portugal
CINEMA Japan
CIRCLE Germany
THE CIRCLE PROJECT Spain
CIRKUS Canada
CITIZEN CAIN United Kingdom
CLAY GREEN'S POLYSORBATE MASQUERADE BAND United States
CLEARLIGHT France
CODA Netherlands
C”DICE Mexico
COLLEGIUM MUSICUM Slovakia
COTO EN PEL Spain
COUSINS & CONRAD United Kingdom
COVENANT United States
CRACK Spain
CRAFT United Kingdom
CRESSIDA United Kingdom
CRONICO Mexico
CROOKED MOUTH United Kingdom
CRUCIBLE United States
CRUCIS Argentina
DAWN Switzerland
DEJA-VU Japan
DELUGE GRANDER United States
DIALOGUE (DAWN DIALOGUE) Russia
DIAPASAO Brazil
DISCIPLINE United States
DOGMA Brazil
DORACOR Italy
DOUG WOODS & COLIN POWELL United Kingdom
DR. COENOBITE Netherlands
DRAGONFLY Switzerland
DRAMA France
DRUCKFARBEN Canada
DRUID United Kingdom
EARTH AND FIRE Netherlands
EARTHRISE United States
ECCENTRIC ORBIT United States
ECHOLYN United States
ECLAT / ECLAT DE VERS France
ECLIPSE Brazil
EDEN Canada
EGGROLL Israel
EIK Iceland
ELLESMERE Italy
ELOHIM France
ELOITERON Switzerland
EMERSON LAKE & PALMER United Kingdom
REDJY EMOND Canada
ENGLAND United Kingdom
THE ENID United Kingdom
EPIDAURUS Germany
EPIGNOSIS United States
EPISODE United States
EQUILIBRIO VITAL Venezuela
ESPIRITU Argentina
ESTRUCTURA Venezuela
ETCETERA Denmark
…TERNIT… Canada
ETHOS United States
EVERFRIEND United States
EX-VAGUS France
EXODE France
EXODUS Poland
EZRA WINSTON Italy
FAITHFUL BREATH Germany
FALLING EDGE Canada
FANTASY United Kingdom
FARMHOUSE ODYSSEY United States
FICCION Venezuela
FINCH Netherlands
FIREBALLET United States
FIRST+AID United Kingdom
FLAGSHIP Sweden
FLAME DREAM Switzerland
FLAMING BESS Germany
THE FLOWER KINGS Sweden
FL‹GHT Mexico
FLYTE Belgium
FOCUS Netherlands
FOREVER TWELVE United States
THE FOUNDATION Sweden
FRŃGIL Peru
FRIGHT PIG United States
FROMAGE Japan
FRUUPP Ireland
FUSONIC Netherlands
G.A.L.F. Brazil
GALIE Mexico
GENESIS United Kingdom
GENS DE LA LUNE France
THE GIFT United Kingdom
GLASS United States
GLASS HAMMER United States
G“TIC Spain
GOVEA Mexico
GRACIOUS United Kingdom
GRANADA Spain
GRAND STAND Sweden
GRANDBELL Brazil
GREENSLADE United Kingdom
GREYFIELD Spain
GROBSCHNITT Germany
SHAUN GUERIN United States
GUILDENSTERN Germany
HALLOWEEN France
HANDS United States
BO HANSSON Sweden
HARLEQUIN MASS United States
HARMONIUM Canada
HECENIA France
HELIOPOLIS United States
ANDERS HELMERSON Brazil
HIGH WHEEL Germany
TERUTSUGU HIRAYAMA Japan
HOGGWASH Ukraine
HOKUS POKUS Norway
LYLE HOLDAHL United States
HOLDING PATTERN United States
HOLY LAMB Latvia
HORIZONT Russia
HYACINTUS Argentina
I.C.U. Germany
III MIL NIO Brazil
ILVCIA Spain
IN SPE Estonia
INDEX Brazil
INFINITY United States
THE INNER ROAD United Kingdom
INQUIRE Germany
JACK INTVELD United States
INVISIBLE Argentina
IRON DUKE Denmark
ISILDURS BANE Sweden
ISOPODA Belgium
IZZ United States
JELLY FICHE Canada
BJ÷RN JOHANSSON Sweden
JORDSJō Norway
KAIPA Sweden
KAIPA DA CAPO Sweden
KAIZEN Brazil
KALABAN United States
KALO Japan
KANSAS United States
KARDA ESTRA United Kingdom
KARFAGEN Ukraine
KARMAKANIC Sweden
KHATSATURJAN Finland
KING EIDER Netherlands
KLOCKWERK ORANGE Austria
KOGAION Romania
KOTEBEL Spain
KVAZAR Norway
KYRIE ELEISON Austria
L'ORIENT D'‘ Canada
LADY LAKE Netherlands
LANVALL Austria
LŃQUESIS Argentina
LAZA I IPE Yugoslavia
LEGACY United States
LEI SECA Brazil
LEITMOTIV Canada
LETHE Netherlands
FRANCIS LICKERISH United Kingdom
LIFE LINE PROJECT Netherlands
LIFT United States
PńR LINDH AND BJ÷RN JOHANSSON Sweden
PńR LINDH PROJECT Sweden
LITTLE TRAGEDIES Russia
CAILYN LLOYD United States
THE LOAD United States
LOCH NESS Brazil
LORD FLIMNAP Israel
M-OPUS Ireland
DUNCAN MACKAY United Kingdom
MADAME CLAUS Argentina
MADISON DYKE Germany
MAGDALENA Japan
MAGIC PIE Norway
MAGIC SPELL Switzerland
NICK MAGNUS United Kingdom
MAGRATHEA United Kingdom
MAHOUJIN Japan
MAINHORSE Switzerland
MALDOROR France
MANDALABAND United Kingdom
MANDRAKE Japan
MANGROVE Netherlands
MANTICORE Sweden
MANTRA Spain
LA MŃQUINA DE HACER PŃJAROS Argentina
MARCO Mexico
MARYGOLD Italy
MASQUE PREMIERE United States
MAZE OF TIME Sweden
MEDINA AZAHARA Spain
MELVIN'S NOSEHAIR Netherlands
MEMORIANCE France
JACQUES MENACHE Mexico
MERLIN Germany
METABOLISME France
MEZQUITA Spain
MIA Argentina
MIDAS Japan
MIKLAGŇRD Sweden
MIKROMIDAS Norway
MILKWEED Canada
MARIO MILLO Australia
DAVID MINASIAN United States
MIND SKY United States
MINOTAURUS Germany
MIRROR Netherlands
MIZUKAGAMI Japan
MONA LISA France
MONOLITH United States
MOON SAFARI Sweden
MOONGARDEN Italy
MORGAN United Kingdom
MORILD Norway
MORSE CODE Canada
NEAL MORSE United States
TIM MORSE United States
MOSAIK Sweden
MOTH VELLUM United States
MUGEN Japan
JESŕS MU—OZ FERNŃNDEZ Spain
NAUTILUS Switzerland
IAN NEAL United Kingdom
NEGASPHERE Japan
NESSIE Belgium
NETHERWORLD United States
NEUSCHWANSTEIN Germany
NEVERNESS Spain
THE NEW GROVE PROJECT Sweden
NEXUS Argentina
THE NICE United Kingdom
NOSTRADAMUS Hungary
NOTTURNO CONCERTANTE Italy
NOVALIS Germany
NOVELA Japan
OAKSENHAM Armenia
OCEAN Germany
OCTOPUS (NOR) Norway
ODYSSICE Netherlands
OMNIA Argentina
ONE Argentina
ONIRIS France
OPUS Yugoslavia
ORION France
OUTER LIMITS Japan
PABLO EL ENTERRADOR Argentina
PAGEANT Japan
PALE ACUTE MOON Japan
PANTA RHEI Hungary
PARAGONE United States
PARTHENON Venezuela
PATCHWORK CACOPHONY United Kingdom
PAZZO FANFANO DI MUSICA Japan
PELL MELL Germany
PENTACLE France
OTA PETRINA Czech Republic
PETRUS CASTRUS Portugal
ANTHONY PHILLIPS United Kingdom
PHYLTER Belgium
PI2 Spain
PICTORIAL WAND Norway
PIG FARM ON THE MOON Venezuela
THE PINK MICE Germany
MICHAEL PINNELLA United States
PO«OS & NUVENS Brazil
POLLEN Canada
PRE United States
PRISMA Netherlands
PROGRESSION BY FAILURE France
PROJECT (ALSO KNOWN AS PPRY) Finland
PROTO-KAW United States
PROUD PEASANT United States
PULSAR France
PUPPET SHOW United States
PYTHAGORAS Netherlands
QUANTUM Brazil
QUATERNA REQUIEM (WIERMANN & VOGEL) Brazil
QUILL United States
R-U KAISER Chile
RAIN United Kingdom
RAINBOW THEATRE Australia
RAISON DE PLUS France
RAK Switzerland
REALM/ STEVE VAIL United States
RECORDANDO O VALE DAS MA«√S Brazil
REFUGEE United Kingdom
RELAYER United States
RENAISSANCE United Kingdom
RING OF MYTH United States
ROCKAPHONICA Argentina
ROCKET SCIENTISTS United States
RAIMUNDO RODULFO Venezuela
THE ROME PRO(G)JECT Italy
KURT RONGEY United States
ANTON ROOLAART United States
JAIME ROSAS Chile
ANDREW ROUSSAK Russia
ROUSSEAU Germany
RUMBLIN' ORCHESTRA Hungary
RUMPLE STILTZKEN COMUNE Switzerland
SAECULA SAECULORUM Brazil
SAENA Mexico
SAGRADO CORA«√O DA TERRA Brazil
SALMON Netherlands
SANDROSE France
GUSTAVO SANTHIAGO Brazil
SCARAMOUCHE Germany
SCHICKE & F‹HRS & FR÷HLING Germany
SEBASTIAN HARDIE Australia
SECOND MOVEMENT Germany
SENSITIVE TO LIGHT France
SEVEN REIZH France
SHADES OF DAWN Germany
SHADOW CIRCUS United States
SHARKMOVE Indonesia
SHINGETSU Japan
SHYLOCK France
SICHER Switzerland
SILVER LINING France
SIMON SAYS Sweden
SINKADUS Sweden
SIRIUS Germany
SIXTY-NINE Germany
SKRYVANIA France
SOCIAL TENSION Japan
SOLARIS Hungary
SOULENGINE Italy
SPHINX Multi-National
SPIN XXI Brazil
SPOCK'S BEARD United States
CHRIS SQUIRE United Kingdom
STARCASTLE United States
STENCIL FOREST United States
STERN-COMBO MEISSEN (STERN MEISSEN) Germany
ROINE STOLT Sweden
STONEHENGE France
SUBLIMINAL Argentina
SUPERNOVA Argentina
SURPRISE United States
SUSTAIN Netherlands
SWEDISH FAMILY Sweden
SYNOPSIS France
T-TAURI Netherlands
TABULA RASA Finland
TABULA SMARAGDINA Hungary
TAŌ PHONG France
TANTRA Portugal
TARANTULA Spain
TARKUS Brazil
TAURUS Chile
TAURUS (NETHERLANDS) Netherlands
TEMPUS FUGIT Brazil
TENDERTON Norway
O TER«O Brazil
TERPANDRE France
TERU'S SYMPHONIA Japan
TESIS ARSIS Brazil
THETA Japan
THIRTEEN OF EVERYTHING United States
THRILOS Poland
TIBET Germany
ARMANDO TIRELLI Uruguay
TISARIS Brazil
TOCCATA Mexico
TOMPOX Hungary
TONIC Germany
TRACE Netherlands
TRANSATLANTIC Multi-National
TRAUMHAUS Germany
TREM DO FUTURO Brazil
TRESPASS Germany
TRESPASS Israel
TRIANA Spain
TRILOGY Germany
TRION Netherlands
TRITONUS Germany
TRIUMVIRAT Germany
TRY Germany
‹NDER LINDEN Argentina
UNIFAUN Sweden
URBAN TRAPEZE Spain
MARIŃN VARGA Slovakia
VERMILION SANDS Japan
VERSAILLES France
VERTICAL ALIGNMENT United States
VESANIA Brazil
VIA LUMINI Brazil
VIA OBSCURA Germany
VITRAL Brazil
THE VOYAGER France
RICK WAKEMAN United Kingdom
WALLENSTEIN Germany
WALLY United Kingdom
WELCOME Switzerland
WHITE WILLOW Norway
WILLIAM GRAY Argentina
WILLOWGLASS United Kingdom
WINDCHASE Australia
WOBBLER Norway
X RELIGION Uzbekistan
XII ALFONSO France
XNA United States
YES United Kingdom
YESTERDAYS Romania
ZARAGON Denmark
ZEBULON Germany
ZEN ROCK AND ROLL United States
ZOMBY WOOF Germany
ZOUNDWORKS Netherlands
ZYCLOPE Spain

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