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Old 10-20-2008, 07:04 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Do Prog bands create the best instrumentals?

There's no denying there are some fantastic instrumentals out there, written by premier progressive bands --- Genesis' "Unquiet slumbers for the sleepers in that quiet earth", from Wind and Wuthering, along with Hackett's gently understated "Horizons", from Foxtrot, and of course Alan Parson's wonderful "Sirius", to name but a few. But are prog instrumentals the pinnacle of the art? And if so, why? Is it because progressive rock is so much more complex, detailed and thoughtful than "normal" rock, or are there other reasons?
Or do you disagree?
And if you agree, what would be your favourite proggy instros?
Finally, is longer better, or is it the case that the more drawn-out a prog instrumental gets, the more boring it becomes? Or the better it becomes?
And will I ever stop asking daft questions?
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Old 10-20-2008, 07:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Yes had some pretty well known instrumental wankings...but they had some good chops.

Instrumentals can be too long, but a lot of the time they are altering the main idea so it sounds decent. Instrumentals that are interesting, not well played are my favorites. 'Interstellar Overdrive' is a great example of a good instrumental for me, very cool riff that they goof around with.
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Old 10-21-2008, 12:12 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I'd say yes.
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Old 10-21-2008, 12:12 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I'd say no.
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Old 10-21-2008, 02:39 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I think I would put it between Prog and Classical. Red by King Crimson is probably my favourite. Or Supervillain by Madvillain, but that's pretty rare in hip hop.
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Old 10-21-2008, 06:56 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Well, in fairness you can't compare prog to classical --- classical has (generally) no lyrics and so is all instrumental, and I wouldn't dream of comparing, say, Dvorak's "Symphony from the new world" or Rachamaninov's "Piano concerto no 2" to "Horizons" or "Hyper Gamma spaces"...
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Old 10-21-2008, 07:09 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Definitely yes! Just some of my favorites -

Camel - Reflections/Captured(It's two separate tracks)
Gong - Expresso
Goblin - Aquaman(Pretty much everything by goblin actually)
Riverside - Reality Dream II(Include Reality Dream I & III as well)
King Crimson - Sailor's Tale

Then there's Frank Zappa, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Mike Oldfield, Whether Report, Rush(La Villa Strangiato comes to mind), more king crimson, lots of Italian bands, Ozric Tentacles, Tangerine Dream, Gryphon etc.
The list is just endless and I'm too lazy to name all the exact songs
There's also a "Post-Rock" genre which is more or less instrumental.

But are prog instrumentals the pinnacle of the art?
Well, not exactly, but prog. bands do tend to do more instrumentals and are always bound to be better.

is longer better?
Depends on the song.

Edit: There are a lot of Metal Instrumentals as well that are really good, but even those bands do tend to be called "Prog".(although there are some which aren't)

Last edited by Demonoid; 10-21-2008 at 07:16 AM.
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Old 10-21-2008, 07:44 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I'd say no.
Same.

I guess you're ruling out Classical because I can't imagine how a quintet playing Bach would really be topped, but I think the roots acts really get it much better because their less limited in what they use for instruments. Accordions, Tin Whistles, half the time they make up their own.

Prog to me is just scales. And you don't need to flip out, its just my opinion and its not likely to change. Sometimes I like it but most times I can just hear Liquid Tension Experiment playing the same slap bass runs over and over and it bothers me.
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Old 10-21-2008, 10:53 AM   #9 (permalink)
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What a cool handle!!
Very good point, in fact: a lot of as you say "roots" acts do push the envelope in instrumentals, even traditional Irish or Scottish groups can pull off some amazing tunes.
And I'm sure, with that handle, you'll agree that there's a certain gravel-voiced singer who can make ANY instrument do things and make sounds it never even thought it could! I think one of my favourites by him, though of course not as experimental as his later stuff, is "Rainbirds" from Swordfishtrombones --- a truly unique piece of music: understated, simple and elegant yet SO different, quiet but yet screaming with the roar of Waits' innate genius.
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Old 10-21-2008, 01:25 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Well Tom is, in my opinion the great audio artist to ever create. people think I'm bias about Metallica, I don't even respond to things about tom a lot because I'll write 5 posts worth.

He has gone on record as loving the symphony the most right before they start when everyone is warming up and doing their own thing and it sounds like a big carnival of noise. A man who appreciates the chaos is a man I cnaa relate to.

he's also created his own instruments, I have an interview on CD where he's explaing on NPR how the Circular violin works. I'll spare you the details but he was like "you bow and and you don't know what sound you'll get, you just have to go with it."

Also thanks for the compliment, I love both artists mentioned, though Tom is the best thing I've ever heard. I'm working on getting a Tattoo connected to him somehow.
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