||This article has multiple issues. Please help improve it or discuss these issues on the talk page.
|Stylistic origins||Psychedelic rock, Progressive folk, avant-garde, experimental rock, jazz fusion, free jazz, classical music, Canterbury scene, folk rock, baroque pop|
|Cultural origins||Late 1960s, United Kingdom|
|Typical instruments||Guitars, bass, keyboards and drums. Most bands also use jazz and classical instruments, like saxophones, timpanis, flutes, violins.|
|Derivative forms||Math rock, post-rock, experimental metal|
|Progressive metal, avant-garde progressive rock, symphonic rock, Wagnerian rock, neo-progressive rock, new prog, space rock, krautrock, progg, zeuhl, Italian progressive rock|
|Art rock, Hard rock, Baroque pop, ambient music, arena rock, Rock in Opposition, Progressive house, Progressive folk|
Progressive rock, aka prog rock or prog, is a rock music subgenre that originated in the United Kingdom, with further developments in Germany, Italy, and France, throughout the mid-to-late 1960s and 1970s. Developing from psychedelic rock, progressive rock originated, similarly to art rock, as a British attempt to give greater artistic weight and credibility to rock music. Bands abandoned the short pop single and used instrumentation and compositional techniques more frequently associated with jazz or classical music in an effort to give rock music the same level of musical sophistication and critical respect. Songs were replaced by musical suites that often stretched to 20 or 40 minutes in length and contained symphonic influences, extended musical themes, fantasy-like ambience and lyrics, and ample, rich sounds and productions. Critics sometimes labeled the concepts as "pretentious" and the sounds as "pompous" and "overblown."
Progressive rock saw a high level of popularity throughout the 1970s, especially in the middle of the decade. Bands such as The Moody Blues, Pink Floyd, Yes, King Crimson, Genesis, and Emerson, Lake & Palmer (ELP) were among the genre's most recognizable acts. Prog started to fade in popularity by the second half of the decade as the rawer and more minimalistic punk rock grew in popularity. Progressive rock bands achieved commercial success well into the 1980s, albeit with changed lineups and more compact song structures.
A revival, often known as new prog, occurred at the turn of the 21st century and has since enjoyed a cult following. The genre has influenced styles such as krautrock and has fused with other forms of rock music to create such sub-genres as neo-classical metal and progressive metal.
Progressive rock originally referred to "classical rock" in which a band performed together with an orchestra, but the term's use broadened over time to include Miles Davis-style jazz fusion, some metal and folk rock styles, and experimental German bands. This makes it impossible to define progressive rock as a specific style, but it is more likely than other types of popular music to experiment with compositional structure, instrumentation, harmony and rhythm, and lyrical content. The advent of the concept album and the genre's roots in psychedelia led albums and performances to be viewed as combined presentations of music, lyrics, and visuals.:57-58
Musical aspects 
Progressive rock songs often avoid common popular music song structures of verse-chorus form, or they blur formal distinctions by extending sections or inserting musical interludes. The latter often results in classical-style suites. These large-scale compositions are similar to the traditional medleys of earlier rock bands, but there is often more thematic unity between the sections. Dynamic contrast is often provided by transitions between electric and acoustic sections.:93 Extended instrumental passages marry the classical solo tradition with the improvisational traditions of jazz and psychedelic rock. Although many progressive rock songs are of three to five minutes in length, extended pieces of twenty minutes or more are not uncommon.
Many bands used compositional techniques normally associated with classical music forms. Gentle Giant, whose Kerry Minnear held a degree in composition from the Royal Academy of Music,:148 often used counterpoint in their pieces.:4 Yes frequently used contrapuntal sections to create the impression of a baroque style, as in a fugue-like section at the eight-minute mark of "Close to the Edge" and the harpsichord solo of "Siberian Khatru.":10 "Close to the Edge" also uses a classical compositional technique in which the arrangement is developed by the use of varied repetitions of a theme throughout the piece's structure:13-14 and has elements of sonata form.:99
Early progressive rock groups expanded the timbral palette of the then-traditional rock instrumentation of guitar, keyboard, bass guitar, and drums by adding instruments more typical of folk music, jazz or music in the classical tradition. A number of bands, especially at the genre's onset, recorded albums in which they performed together with a full orchestra.:32 The Moody Blues, who until then had been a blues-based British invasion band with a single hit to their credit, launched the trend with the huge success of their Days of Future Passed album. Days used arrangements that combined the band and orchestra, and it used orchestral interludes to bridge together the individual songs.
It was impractical to work together with an orchestra on a regular basis, so the Moody Blues turned to the Mellotron as a substitute. The Mellotron is an instrument that contains tape loops of recorded instruments and plays back their sounds when the keyboard is pressed. Its sounds included woodwinds, choirs, brass and, most famously, strings. Limitations of the technology meant that its sounds were not exact reproductions of the instruments, but instead had a wobbly, muted quality that many bands prized. This instrument became the signature sound of the Moody Blues and was closely associated with many later progressive rock acts including Genesis, Strawbs, Pink Floyd and King Crimson.
The Hammond organ is another instrument closely associated with progressive rock. It is a versatile instrument that can function like a pipe organ, can be played through a guitar amplifier for a distorted tone, can make percussive sounds, and is very effective as a lead instrument.:33-34 The use of organs and choirs reflects the background in Anglican church music shared by many of the genre's founders.:287
The birth of progressive rock roughly coincided with the availability of commercially available synthesizers. Early modular synthesizers were large instruments that used patch cords to route the signal flow. Programming the instruments meant manually routing the patch cords. The Minimoog, a small synthesizer with pre-wired routings, began production in 1971 and provided keyboardists with an instrument that could imitate other instruments, could create new sounds of its own, and was highly portable and affordable. Progressive rock was the genre in which the synthesizer first became established as a common part of popular music.:34-35 Rapid, virtuosic solos played by progressive rock keyboardists led the keyboard to be viewed as a masculine instrument, as opposed to the feminine image it had when the piano was the primary keyboard instrument.
Progressive rock bands often use instruments in ways different from their traditional roles. The role of the bass may be expanded from its traditional rhythm section function into that of a lead instrument. Bassists often play contrapuntal lines that are more independent and melodic than conventional bass lines, which emphasize the chord root.:74 This is often accompanied by the use of an instrument such as a Rickenbacker bass, whose sound contains an unusually large amount of treble frequencies,:38 or a Chapman Stick, which is operated with both hands on the fretboard and allows polyrhythmic and chordal playing. Guitar may be dispensed with altogether.:35
Rhythm, melody and harmony 
There is a tendency towards greater freedom of rhythm than exists in other forms of rock music. Progressive rock artists are more likely to explore complex time signatures such as 5/8 and 7/8. Tempo, key and time signature changes are common within progressive rock compositions. John Wetton, a veteran of several prominent progressive rock groups, later described frequent meter changes as an immature behavior that one grows out of.:136 Yes keyboardist Rick Wakeman explained their use as necessary for matching the music to Jon Anderson's lyrics.:71-72
Progressive rock often discards the blues inflections and pentatonic scale-based melodies of mainstream rock in favor of modal melodies. Compositions draw inspiration from a wide range of genres including classical, jazz, folk music and world music. Melodies are more likely to comprise longer, developing passages than short, catchy ones.
Chords and chord progressions may be augmented with sixths, sevenths and compound intervals such as ninths.[better source needed][dubious ] Some bands, such as King Crimson, incorporated atonality and free improvisation into their works.:4 Chord changes are typically based on modes, as is typical of rock music, and deviate significantly from the tonality of music from the classical era.:10-11
Lyrical themes 
Progressive rock lyrics tend to avoid common rock and pop subjects such as love and dancing. Bands also avoid such youth-oriented themes as violence, nihilism, rebellion, and the macabre. Sex is not a common subject, although the occasionally leering lyrics of Jethro Tull are an exception.:83-84 Themes found in classical literature, fantasy and folklore occur frequently, and medievalism and science fiction are common. Medieval and space travel themes represent spiritual transformation and the quest for an ideal society.:73, 82
Many early lyrics express utopian themes that reflect the genre's origins in psychedelic rock:82-3 and address the subject of spiritual transformation.:76 Dystopian and apocalyptic themes drawn from science fiction criticize totalitarianism and the dehumanizing effects of society. These occur in Van der Graaf Generator's "Lemmings," Roger Waters' Pink Floyd lyrics in the mid-to-late 1970s,:73, 74, 78 Rush's "2112," and Radiohead's OK Computer. King Crimson's "21st Century Schizoid Man" anticipates cyberpunk by several years:156 and carries a theme of technology run amok that is also found in ELP's Tarkus and Brain Salad Surgery albums.:71
Social commentary is frequently present. The British class system is criticized in Genesis' Selling England by the Pound, Gentle Giant's Three Friends and Jethro Tull's Thick as a Brick.:71 Breakfast in America, by British expatriates Supertramp, questioned the American Dream. Organized religion is criticized in Jethro Tull's Aqualung, ELP's "The Only Way (Hymn)" and King Crimson's "The Great Deceiver.":79
Several bands valued lyrics so strongly as to employ a lyricist as a full-time band member. These include Peter Sinfield with King Crimson and Keith Reid with Procol Harum. Renaissance maintained a longtime relationship with lyricist Betty Thatcher.
Concept albums 
The late 1960s and early 1970s saw a general trend, among rock and pop artists, toward albums in which all the songs shared a common theme. This tendency was especially pronounced in progressive rock.:41-42Experimentation with expanded musical forms contributed to this, as compositions often stretched to twenty minutes or more in length. Songs, which may be more or less thematically related, are often combined into suites that contain several movements.:85 This occurred as early as the 1966 album Freak Out!, by The Mothers of Invention, in which the multi-part "The Return of the Son of Monster Magnet" occupied the entire fourth side of the album.
Many of these extended pieces are inspired by works of literature. Pink Floyd's Animals is a concept album based on George Orwell's Animal Farm.:74 Yes' "Close to the Edge" is inspired by Hermann Hesse's Siddhartha.:80 Genesis' Selling England by the Pound was influenced by T.S. Eliot's poem The Waste Land.:70 Rush's "2112" is based on Ayn Rand's Anthem.
These multi-part suites are at best, as with "Close to the Edge":105 and "2112," considered to be among the bands' greatest works. Some bands stretched the format beyond audiences' capacity to tolerate. This was the case with Yes' Tales from Topographic Oceans,:182 a two-LP set that contained a single 20-minute song on each side. The album caused disagreements that led to keyboardist Rick Wakeman's departure from the band, as he would protest the new songs by eating onstage instead of playing. In the punk era, Tales... became a symbol of progressive rock self-indulgence.
Visual aspects 
Stage presentation 
Pink Floyd pioneered the concept of concerts as multimedia events, and they used sophisticated light shows meant to suggest or enhance the use of LSD.:61-62 Their laser show was later replaced by even more sophisticated props such as airplane crashes, flying animals, and a giant wall that was constructed behind them and then torn down.:245 Genesis took a less spectacular approach, as frontman Peter Gabriel used multiple costume changes to accent the theatrical nature of his lyrics.
Some acts indulged in pure showmanship. Jethro Tull frontman Ian Anderson was noted for his Pan-like persona and energetic performances in which he played the flute while standing on one leg. Keith Emerson, while with The Nice, was noted for plunging daggers into his organ keyboard to hold notes. ELP frequently used dangerous props and gimmicks such as flying pianos and exploding synthesizers in their stage act, and drummer Carl Palmer once cracked several ribs when jumping over his drum set.:62
This enthusiasm for showmanship was not shared by all progressive rock bands. King Crimson initially employed a dramatic light show, but guitarist Robert Fripp became concerned that it distracted from the music. Fripp and Genesis guitarist Steve Hackett notably engaged in no stage movement at all and, instead, stayed seated throughout performances.:63-64
Album art 
Album covers prior to The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band usually consisted of a photograph of the group, but the trend toward concept albums was accompanied by a move toward artwork that depicted the album's concept. This artwork often contains science fiction and fantasy motifs executed in a surrealist style. A number of artists became closely associated with the genre, such as Roger Dean, who worked extensively with Yes; Paul Whitehead, famous for his work on early Genesis albums, and Hipgnosis, a London design firm with close personal ties to members of Pink Floyd.:57-60 Artwork was sometimes commissioned from artists who were famous in their own right, such as the H.R. Giger design for ELP's Brain Salad Surgery and caricaturist Gerald Scarfe's illustrations for Pink Floyd's The Wall.
Bob Dylan's poetry, the 1966 album Freak Out! by The Mothers of Invention, and the 1967 album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band by The Beatles have all been mentioned as important in the genre's development. Sgt. Pepper's, with its lyrical unity, extended structure, complexity, eclecticism, experimentalism, and influences derived from classical music forms, is largely viewed as the beginning of the progressive rock genre:15,20 and as the point at which rock, which previously had been considered dance music, became music that was made for listening to.:3 The Beach Boys' concept album Pet Sounds (1966), which itself influenced Sgt. Pepper's,:53 and Jefferson Airplane's second album, Surrealistic Pillow (1967), also influenced many progressive rock bands.
Bob Dylan introduced a literary element to rock through his fascination with the Surrealists and the French Symbolists and his immersion in the New York City art scene of the early 1960s.:156-7 The trend of bands with names drawn from literature, such as The Doors, Steppenwolf and The Ides of March, was a further sign of rock music aligning itself with high culture.:179 Doors singer Jim Morrison referenced such literary concepts as Nietzsche and the Apollonian and Dionysian dichotomy.:183
Freak Out! had been a mixture of progressive rock, garage rock and avant-garde layered sounds. In the same year, the band "1-2-3", later renamed Clouds, began experimenting with song structure, improvisation, and multi-layered arrangements. In March of that year, The Byrds released "Eight Miles High", a pioneering psychedelic rock single with lead guitar heavily influenced by the jazz soloing style of John Coltrane. Later that year, The Who released "A Quick One While He's Away", the first example of the rock opera form, and considered by some to have been the first prog epic. The rock opera was more fully realized in S.F. Sorrow, an influential 1967 album by The Pretty Things.
Harpsichords, orchestral wind instruments and string sections were used in mid-1960s recordings such as "Eleanor Rigby" by The Beatles and "Lady Jane" by The Rolling Stones.:4 This created the form of Baroque rock heard in the Bach-inspired "A Whiter Shade of Pale" (1967), by Procol Harum. The use of instruments traditionally associated with classical music increased after the release of Sgt. Pepper's. The Moody Blues established the popularity of symphonic rock when they recorded Days of Future Passed together with the London Festival Orchestra, and Procol Harum began to use a greater variety of acoustic instruments. Classical influences sometimes took the form of pieces adapted from or inspired by classical works, such as Jeff Beck's "Beck's Bolero" and parts of The Nice's Ars Longa Vita Brevis. The latter, along with such Nice tracks as "Rondo" and "America," reflect a greater interest in music that is entirely instrumental. Sgt. Pepper's and Days both represent a growing tendency toward song cycles and suites comprised of multiple movements. :21-22
Jazz influences appeared in the music of Traffic, Colosseum and Canterbury scene bands such as Soft Machine. Canterbury scene bands emphasized the use of wind instruments, complex chord changes and long improvisations.:20 Several bands that included jazz-style horn sections appeared, including Blood, Sweat & Tears and Chicago. Of these, Chicago in particular experimented with suites and extended compositions in their early work.:163-4 Jethro Tull began as a heavy blues band fronted by Ian Anderson, a flautist deeply influenced by jazz musician Rahsaan Roland Kirk.:168
Early 1970s classic era 
By this time, a lot of already-famous bands seemed to jump on the prog-rock bandwagon, unless they were jumping on the other trend of the era, glam rock. By 1970 rock had fully blossomed into a well-developed genre with some maturity and a lot of options within reach; it had detached itself once and for all from pop music especially by breaking the classic 3-minute song barrier and indulging in more than mere entertainment, introducing introspection and prospecting new musical territories.
Pink Floyd's 1970 album Atom Heart Mother reached the top spot on the UK charts. Their 1973 The Dark Side of the Moon, which united their extended compositions with the more structured kind of composing employed when Syd Barrett was their songwriter,:34-35 spent more than two years at the top of the charts:4, 38 and remained on the top 200 album chart for fifteen years.:245 Progressive rock's popularity peaked in the mid-1970s, when prog artists regularly topped reader polls in mainstream popular music magazines in Britain, the whole of Europe and, to a lesser extent, in America, and albums like Mike Oldfield's Tubular Bells topped the charts. Although reasonably appreciated in the U.S., American bands were not into it, and most of the acts of the genre charting in America were British, or European. Very few American bands engaged in progressive rock before the mid-1990s, when new prog and prog metal became a sufficiently viable, commercially fruitful niche in the U.S. The vast majority of fans of the genre have always been white males. During the genre's 1970s heyday audiences were reserved in their behavior tending to sit and intently concentrate on the performance. This contrasted with more overt and emotional reactions of audiences of other rock music styles.
North America 
Progressive rock came to be appreciated overseas, but it mostly remained a European, and especially British, phenomenon. Few American bands engaged in it, and the purest representatives of the genre, such as Starcastle and Happy the Man, remained limited to their own geographic regions.:185-6 This is at least in part due to music industry differences between the US and Great Britain. UK audiences were accustomed to hearing bands in clubs, and British bands could support themselves through touring. US audiences were first exposed to new music on the radio, so that bands in the US required radio airplay for success.:296-7 Cultural factors were also involved, as US musicians tended to have a blues background, while Europeans tended toward a classical music foundation.:286
North American progressive rock bands tended to represent hybrid styles such as the complex metal of Rush, the Southern rock-tinged prog of Kansas, and the eclectic fusion of the all-instrumental Dixie Dregs.:186 British progressive rock acts had their greatest US success in the same geographic areas in which British heavy metal bands experienced their greatest popularity. The overlap in audiences led to the success of arena rock bands, such as Boston, Kansas and Styx, who combined elements of the two styles.:186
Progressive rock achieved popularity in Continental Europe quicker than it did in the US. Rock music first became popular in Italy when a strong Italian progressive rock scene developed in the early 1970s.:154-55 Few of the European groups were successful outside of their own countries, with the exceptions of bands like Focus, who wrote English-language lyrics, and Le Orme and PFM, whose English lyrics were written by Peter Hammill and Peter Sinfield, respectively.:183-184
Some European bands played in a style derivative of English bands, as with Triumvirat's similarity to ELP and Ange's King Crimson influence.:267 Others brought national elements to their style: Spain's Granada introduced flamenco elements, groups such as Samla Mammas Manna drew from the folk music styles of their respective nations, and Italian bands such as Il Balletto di Bronzo leaned toward an approach that was more overtly emotional than that of their British counterparts.:184
Some progressive rock subgenres are tied to national scenes. Zeuhl was a name given to the style of the French band Magma. A number of bands were strongly influenced by Magma and are considered to be part of that subgenre. There were a number of bands in Germany who came to be labeled as "krautrock." These bands tended to be more strongly influenced by recent developments in art music than the British bands, whose musical vocabulary leaned more toward the Romantic era. Many of these groups, such as Can, were very influential even among bands that had little enthusiasm for progressive rock in general.:82
Late 1970s decline 
Between 1975 and 1976, four of the biggest bands in progressive rock —Yes, Emerson, Lake & Palmer (ELP), Genesis and King Crimson— each either ceased performing or changed major personnel. Members of Yes and ELP left to pursue solo work, as did Genesis's lead singer Peter Gabriel (though Genesis would continue with Phil Collins as lead vocalist). Lead guitarist Robert Fripp announced the end of King Crimson after the Red album was released (although he reformed the band with different lineups several times in the following years). When, in 1977, Yes and ELP re-grouped, they enjoyed moderate success but did not retain their previous popularity. Genesis started a new chapter in their musical style, which moved dramatically away from the theatrical rock epics of their origins, and most other prog acts either dissolved, dwindled in fame and fortune or moved to other styles as well.
Many bands had by the mid-1970s reached the limit of how far they could experiment in a rock context, and fans had wearied of the extended, epic compositions. The sounds of the Hammond, Minimoog and Mellotron had been thoroughly explored, and their use became clichéd. Those bands who continued to record often simplified their sound, and the genre fragmented from the late 1970s onward.:181-183 A number of symphonic pop bands, such as Supertramp, 10cc, the Alan Parsons Project and the Electric Light Orchestra, brought the orchestral-style arrangements into a context that emphasized pop singles while allowing for occasional instances of exploration.:187 As the genre's popularity declined, some established acts, such as Kansas and ELP, were pressured to create simpler music with simpler harmony and song structures and to move away from changes in meter. A number of the major bands, including Van der Graaf Generator, Gentle Giant and U.K., dissolved between 1978 and 1980.:187-188
Political and social trends of the late 1970s shifted away from the early 1970s hippie attitudes that had led to the genre's development and popularity. The rise in punk cynicism made the utopian ideals expressed in progressive rock lyrics unfashionable.:78 Virtuosity was rejected, as the expense of purchasing quality instruments and the time investment of learning to play them were seen as barriers to rock's energy and immediacy.:115 There were also changes in the music industry, as record companies disappeared and merged into large media conglomerates. Promoting and developing experimental music was not part of the marketing strategy for these large corporations, who focused their attention on identifying and targeting profitable market niches.:108-110 Only a handful of the major progressive rock acts of the 1970s, and virtually none of the minor ones, survived past 1980.
The early 1980s saw a revitalization of progressive rock, as established acts renewed themselves and new artists appeared. The period's progressive music has been called "neo-progressive rock". Many 1980s progressive bands were influenced by minimalism, world music, and the New Wave. The digital synthesizer became a prominent instrument.
In 1981, guitarist Fripp and drummer Bill Bruford re-formed King Crimson with two Americans, the guitarist and singer Adrian Belew and the bassist Tony Levin; Belew had worked with art rockers Frank Zappa and David Bowie, while Levin had worked with Peter Gabriel. Beyond having new electronic instruments —such as Bruford's electronic drums, Levin's Chapman Stick, and Belew and Fripp's guitar synthesizers— the re-formed King Crimson featured tightly interconnected minimalist instrumentals, a sound that borrowed from gamelan as well as the dance music of the New Wave. Gamelan and minimalism also influenced Brian Eno (who had worked with Fripp and Bowie, following his work with Roxy Music) and Talking Heads (who had worked briefly with Fripp and extensively with Eno and Belew).
Some progressive rock stalwarts changed musical direction, simplifying their music and making it more commercially viable. Containing members of major prog-acts from the 1970s, the supergroup Asia debuted with a mainstream rock-oriented album. Asia's commercial success demonstrated popular demand for a more radio-friendly British progressive rock, which could combine progressive rock with hard rock, also following the North-American Top-40 bands such as Styx, Journey, and Rush. Genesis performed short catchy singles that were heard by and appealed to a larger audience during the 1980s, as did Yes with its comeback album entitled 90125, which featured their only US number-one single, "Owner of a Lonely Heart". These radio friendly North American acts were later dubbed "Prog Lite" by popular music scholar Kevin Holm-Hudson.
A new generation of neo-progressive bands appeared, such as Marillion, UK, Twelfth Night, IQ, Pendragon, Quasar, Solstice and Pallas. Neo-prog continued to remain viable into the 1990s and beyond with bands like Arena and Jadis.
Many post-punk bands were influenced by progressive rock bands, though their main influences tend not to be classical rock or Canterbury bands but rather krautrock bands, particularly Can and Roxy Music. Bands such as Public Image Ltd, Magazine, Wire, Cardiacs and Simple Minds showed some influence of prog along with their more usually recognized punk influences. Julian Cope of The Teardrop Explodes wrote a history of the krautrock genre, Krautrocksampler. New wave bands tended to be less hostile toward progressive rock than were the punks, and there were crossovers, such as Robert Fripp's and Brian Eno's involvement with Talking Heads, and Yes' replacement of Rick Wakeman and Jon Anderson with the pop duo The Buggles.:99 A number of bands in New York's No wave scene were impressed with punk's energy but not with its primitivism. This led to experiments that combined that energy with greater musical sophistication, such as the guitar orchestras of Glenn Branca and the noise experiments of Sonic Youth.:113-120
1990s and 2000s 
Progressive metal 
The progressive rock genre enjoyed another revival in the 1990s. A notable impetus to this revival was the 1991 foundation of the Swedish Art Rock Society, an association created to rescue the values of classic progressive rock, with Pär Lindh as chairman. This society was a catalyst for new Swedish bands such as Anekdoten, Änglagård, Landberk and Pär Lindh Project, which joined the scene between 1992 and 1994. These bands became part of progressive rock's "Third Wave", spearheaded by Sweden's The Flower Kings, the UK's Porcupine Tree, Norway's White Willow, and from the United States, Dream Theater, Spock's Beard, Echolyn, Ten Jinn, Proto-Kaw (a reincarnation of an early lineup of Kansas), and Glass Hammer. Arjen Anthony Lucassen's Ayreon project, featuring the backing of an array of talent from the progressive rock genre, produced a series of innovative prog-metal concept albums starting from 1995.
Several of the bands in the prog-metal genre – U.S. bands Queensrÿche, Fates Warning, and Dream Theater, as well as Sweden's Opeth – cite pioneer progressive hard-rockers Rush as a primary influence, although their music also exhibits influences from more traditional metal and rock bands such as Black Sabbath and Deep Purple. Tool (U.S.) have cited pioneers King Crimson as an influence on their work. King Crimson opened for Tool on their 2001 tour and expressed admiration for the group while continuing to deny the "prog" label.
Progressive rock has also served as a key inspiration for genres such as post-rock, post-metal, avant-garde metal, power metal, neo-classical metal and symphonic metal. Former Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy has acknowledged that the prominent use of progressive elements and qualities in metal is not confined to bands conventionally classified as "progressive metal". Many underground metal styles or seminal bands remain poorly known, even to genre fans. Those styles include: extreme metal styles, which are characterized by extremely fast or slow speed, high levels of distortion, a technical or atmospheric, epic orientation and often highly unusual melodies, scales, vocal styles, song structures and, especially in death metal, abrupt tempo, key and time signature changes; folk metal is known for often employing uncommon instruments and other unusual elements. Lesser-known seminal bands include: Watchtower, Death, Celtic Frost (a band having pioneered several styles) or The 3rd and the Mortal.
Former members of the pioneering post-hardcore band At the Drive-In, Cedric Bixler-Zavala and Omar Rodriguez-Lopez, went on to form The Mars Volta, a successful progressive band (often tagged as Progressive Alternative or progressive post-hardcore) that incorporates jazz, funk, punk rock, Latin music, and ambient noise into songs that range in length from a few minutes to more than thirty. They achieved some crossover success with their 2005 album Frances the Mute, which reached number 4 on the Billboard 200 chart after the single "The Widow" became a hit on modern rock radio. Coheed and Cambria are another band known for their lengthy solos and off-the-beaten-path songwriting direction, in which each song corresponds to an important event in the graphic novel and novel series, The Amory Wars, which was written by lead singer/guitarist Claudio Sanchez. Other successful mainstream rock bands, including Radiohead and Muse  have been cited in the mainstream press as inheritors of the progressive rock mantle, along with Pure Reason Revolution, The Mystery Jets, Nude, Warpaint, and Mew.
New prog 
New prog (also known as nu prog or post-prog) is a term that appeared around the mid-2000s to describe a number of alternative and experimental bands who incorporated elements from progressive rock or had an expansive, musically diverse, approach to their music in a way that has been identified to be progressive, but using a more musically contemporary template. Notable musical groups described as post-prog or new prog included 30 Seconds to Mars; Anathema; Coheed and Cambria; Mew; Muse; Mystery Jets; Oceansize, Pure Reason Revolution; Chiodos and The Mars Volta.
The first decade of the 2000s saw progressive rock gain popularity in eastern Europe, especially in Russia, where the InProg festival was founded in 2001 and bands like Little Tragedies, EXIT project, Kostarev Group and Disen Gage achieved relative success in the Russian rock scene and were also noted outside Russia. Other notable north and eastern European bands are the Danish band Prime Time, the Turkish band Nemrud, the Latvian band Olive Mess, the Finnish band Jeavestone, Lithuanian The Skys and the Polish band Riverside. In Spain, the most outstanding bands are Triana, Bloque, Iceberg, Los Canarios, Galadriel or Numen. In Asia, some progressive rock bands such as the Uzbek band FromUz were also founded.
Progressive rock has seen a resurgence in popularity with the introduction of the Progressive Music Awards, which have brought older prog rock artists like Pink Floyd (although they never left the public eye and have had a consistent and large fan base for most of their career), Genesis, Renaissance, Yes, The Moody Blues and Emerson, Lake and Palmer to modern audiences. Many new Progressive Rock bands including The JMS Project, Sidony Box,, Stick Men arising from Levin's Stick Man project, and more have surfaced right up into 2013, still making this genre of music full of life and only getting stronger with interest.
Alternatively, fusion genres of progressive rock such as progressive metal have seen a steady rise in popularity in both the underground and mainstream music scenes in recent years.
Renewed interest in progressive rock in the 1990s led to the development of festivals. ProgFest, organized by Greg Walker and David Overstreet in 1993, was first held in UCLA's Royce Hall, and featured Sweden's Änglagård, the UK's IQ, Quill and Citadel. A festival called CalProg is held every year at Whittier, California in Los Angeles. NEARfest held its first event in 1999 in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania and has held annual concerts ever since.
Other festivals include the annual Rites of Spring Festival (RoSfest) in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, The Rogue Independent Music Festival in Atlanta, Georgia, Baja Prog in Mexicali, Mexico, ProgPower USA in Atlanta, Georgia and ProgPower Europe in Baarlo, Netherlands. Progressive Nation was held in 2008, featuring progressive metal bands Dream Theater, Opeth, Between the Buried and Me, and Three. Progressive Nation 2009 was held the following year featuring Zappa Plays Zappa, Bigelf, and Scale the Summit touring across the United States and Canada, as well as an additional international tour.
The genre has received both a great amount of critical acclaim and criticism throughout the years. Progressive rock has been described as parallel to the classical music of Igor Stravinsky and Béla Bartók. This desire to expand the boundaries of rock, combined with some musicians' dismissiveness toward mainstream rock and pop music, insulted critics and led to accusations of elitism. Its intellectual, fantastic and apolitical lyrics and its shunning of rock's blues roots were abandonments of the very things that many critics valued in rock music.:168-173 Progressive rock also represented the maturation of rock as a genre, but there was an opinion among critics that rock was and should remain fundamentally tied to adolescence, so that rock and maturity were mutually exclusive.:107 The simplicity of punk was in part a reaction against the elaborate nature of progressive rock.
These aspirations toward high culture reflect progressive rock's origins as a music created largely by upper- and middle-class, white-collar, college-educated males from Southern England. The music never reflected the concerns of or was embraced by working class listeners,:144-148 except in the US, where listeners appreciated the musicians' virtuosity.:156 Progressive rock's exotic, literary topics were considered particularly irrelevant to British youth during the late 1970s, when the nation suffered from a poor economy and frequent strikes and shortages. Punk rock, a simpler and more aggressive style that emerged in this era, labeled prog bands as "dinosaurs" whose time had passed. This new music rejected virtuosity and embraced the immediacy of minimalistic song structures. Punk and disco, which also emerged during this period, helped move UK critical opinion and popular support away from progressive rock.
List of progressive rock bands 
See also 
- Ambient music
- Electric folk
- List of musical works in unusual time signatures
- Musique concrete
- Rock in Opposition
- Second Viennese School
- Timeline of progressive rock
- Third stream
- Category:Progressive rock record labels
- Piero Scaruffi, The History of Rock Music - The Sixties
- Listening to the future: the time of progressive rock, 1968-1978, pp. 71-75
- "Prog-Rock/Art Rock". AllMusic. AllMusic. 2007. Archived from the original on 2011-12-05. Retrieved 2007-12-04. "Progressive rock and art rock are two almost interchangeable terms describing a mostly British attempt to elevate rock music to new levels of artistic credibility."
- Cleveland, Barry. "Prog rock.(Style Council)." Guitar Player. NewBay Media LLC. March 2005
- "Radiohead's new album proves again that they can be intelligent without being pretentious" (in English). The Colby Echo. Retrieved 9 May 2013.
- Allmusic website, about prog-rock, retrieved: 9/16/2012
- Braitman, Stephen M H. "Progressive Rock is a World Unto Itself." Goldmine. Krause Publications. 2011. HighBeam Research. 9 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Macan, Edward. Rocking the Classics: English Progressive Rock and the Counterculture. New York: Oxford University Press. 1997
- Popular music. Oxford Companion to Music. Subscription required for online access. Accessed online on March 29, 2010.
- Covach, John. "Progressive Rock, 'Close to the Edge,' and the Boundaries of Style." in Understanding Rock: Essays in Musical Analysis. Ed. Covach, John, and Graeme M. Boone. New York: Oxford University Press, 1997.
- Duffy, John. "The Moody Blues And The Mellotron." Sunday News Lancaster, PA. Lancaster Newspapers Inc. 21 Mar 2010. HighBeam Research. Accessed 12 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Cleveland, Barry. "Prog rock.(Style Council)." Guitar Player. NewBay Media LLC. March 2005
- Downie, Ken. "GENESIS 1971-1975: THE CLASSIC ERA." Goldmine. Krause Publications. 1 Feb 2011. HighBeam Research. Accessed 12 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Campbell, Dan. "The Strawbs unplugged; British band performs tonight at the Birchmere with Pentangle.(LIFE)." The Washington Times (Washington, DC). News World Communications, Inc. 5 May 2003. HighBeam Research. Accessed 12 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Duffy, John. "The Moody Blues And The Mellotron." Sunday News Lancaster, PA. Lancaster Newspapers Inc. 21 Mar 2010. HighBeam Research. Accessed 12 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Evans, Simon. "Ian's return to the court of the Crimson King; Thirty years after helping make one of the most influential albums in rock history ex-King Crimson reedsman Ian McDonald is releasing his first solo album. He spoke to Simon Evans.(News)." The Birmingham Post (England). MGN Ltd. 13 Jul 1999. HighBeam Research. Accessed 12 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Curtis, Jim. Rock Eras: Interpretations of Music and Society, 1954-1984. Bowling Green, OH: Bowling Green State University Popular Press, 1987
- "Are We Not New Wave? Modern Pop at the Turn of the 1980 by Theo Cateforis p 154-159 2011 ISBN 978047215556 University of Michigan Press
- Martin, Bill. Avant Rock: Experimental Music from the Beatles to Bjeork. Chicago: Open Court, 2002
- Imbrogno, Douglas. "Stick Figure: Greg Howard one of a handful of international figures who Stick with it." The Charleston Gazette (Charleston, WV). 23 Aug 2001. McClatchy-Tribune Information Services. HighBeam Research. Accessed 9 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Glenn Riley, Progressive Rock Guitar: A Guitarist's Guide to the Styles and Techniques of Art Rock, Alfred Music Publishing, Aug 1, 2004, p22
- Mick Berry, Jason Gianni, The Drummer's Bible: How to Play Every Drum Style from Afro-Cuban to Zydeco, See Sharp Press, Aug 1, 2003, p119
- progarchives.com, A definition of Progressive Rock Music
- Martin, Bill. Listening to the Future: The Time of Progressive Rock, 1968-1978. Chicago: Open Court, 1998
- McNair, James. "Slow progress, but Rush's hour is here at last." The Independent (London, England). Independent Print Ltd. 30 Apr 2013. HighBeam Research. 18 May 2013  (subscription required)
- Moon, Tom. "Highly anticipated followup to `OK Computer' goes in a different direction.(Knight Ridder Newspapers)." Knight Ridder/Tribune News Service. McClatchy-Tribune Information Services. 2 Oct 2000. HighBeam Research. 18 May 2013  (subscription required)
- K. Holm-Hudson, Progressive Rock Reconsidered, Taylor & Francis, Oct 19, 2001, p 184
- Dave Austin, Jim Peterik, Cathy Austin, Songwriting For Dummies, John Wiley & Sons, Aug 9, 2010 p 37
- DeRogatis, Jim. "A British prog-rock band digests the U.S." Chicago Sun-Times. Sun-Times News Group. 30 Jun 2002. HighBeam Research. Accessed 19 May. 2013  (subscription required)
- Perrone, Pierre. "Betty Thatcher." The Independent (London, England). 16 Sep 2011. Independent Print Ltd. HighBeam Research. Accessed 9 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Jeff Miers. "Still a Rush; Canadian Progressive-Rock Trio Remains Energized after Three Decades." The Buffalo News (Buffalo, NY). Dialog LLC. 15 Aug 2004. HighBeam Research. Accessed 10 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Kava, Brad. "Progressive rock's Yes: band of a thousand chances." San Jose Mercury News. 15 Jul 2002. McClatchy-Tribune Information Services. HighBeam Research. Accessed 9 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Berkmann, Marcus. "In the long run." The Spectator. The Spectator Ltd. (UK). 03 Apr 1999. HighBeam Research. Accessed 9 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Gottlieb, Jed. "Rebuilding `The Wall'; Roger Waters takes Pink Floyd's enduring epic on tour.(Arts and Lifestyle)." The Boston Herald. Herald Media, LLC. 29 Sep 2010. HighBeam Research. 11 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Friedlander, Paul. Rock and Roll: A Social History. Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1996
- Guarino, Mark. "Genesis turns it on New tour looks back 40 years.(Time Out!)(Main event)." Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL). Paddock Publications, Inc. 29 Sep 2007. HighBeam Research. Accessed 11 May 2013. (subscription required)
- Martinez, Gerald. "Totally Tull." Sunday Mail. The New Straits Times Press. 7 Jul 2002. HighBeam Research. Accessed 11 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Santella, Jim. "Over the weekend, Jethro Tull, one of the '70s super-groups, headed the weekend lineup with a performance in the Darien Lake Performing Arts Center. The same night, George Carlin, a veteran comedian whose heritage goes back even further, delivered his satire to the crowd in Melody Fair." The Buffalo News (Buffalo, NY). Dialog LLC. 6 Sep 1993. HighBeam Research. Accessed 11 May 2013. (subscription required)
- Thrills, Adrian. "Spinal Tap? we're the real kings of prog rock.(Features)." Daily Mail (London). McClatchy-Tribune Information Services. 9 Jul 2010. HighBeam Research. Accessed 11 May 2013. (subscription required)
- Windsor, John. "COLLECTABLES." The Independent (London, England). Independent Print Ltd. 29 May 1994. HighBeam Research. Accessed 11 May 2013  (subscription required)
- Price, Stuart. "BOOKS: PICK OF THE WEEK Gerald Scarfe Tue Arts Centre, Stamford." The Independent (London, England). Independent Print Ltd. 22 March 2003. HighBeam Research. Accessed 11 May 2013  (subscription required)
- John Sidney Cotner, "Archetypes of progressiveness in rock, ca. 1966-1973" (University of Wisconsin--Madison, 2001), p.30.
- Brian Hogg, The History of Scottish Rock and Pop. (BBC/Guinness Publishing);'1-2-3 and the Birth of Prog', Mojo, Nov. 1994
- The Who at progarchives.com
- Cleveland, Barry. "Prog rock.(Style Council)." Guitar Player. NewBay Media LLC. March 2005
- J. S. Harrington, Sonic Cool: the Life & Death of Rock 'n' Roll (Milwaukee, WI: Hal Leonard Corporation, 2003), ISBN 0-634-02861-8, p. 191.
- Whiteley, Sheila. The Space Between the Notes: Rock and the Counter-Culture. London: Routledge, 1992
- Globe Staff. "Second Time's the Charm for Dregs." The Boston Globe. 21 February 1992.
- Tamm, Eric (2003) . "9 King Crimson IV and Andy Summers". Robert Fripp: From crimson king to crafty master (Progressive Ears ed.). Faber and Faber (1990). ISBN 0-571-16289-4. Zipped Microsoft Word Document. Retrieved October 26, 2011.
- http://prh.org.uk/solsticeweb/reviews.html Various press articles about Solstice, Feb 2013
- Baron, Ingo. "Jaki Liebezeit." Modern Drummer : MD. Modern Drummer Publications Inc. March 2011. HighBeam Research. Accessed 13 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Mulholland, Garry. "Pop: After the anarchy ; Punk is dead. Johnny Rotten has a re-release and is flirting with the `fascist regime'. But it's not all apathy in the UK. GARRY MULHOLLAND reflects on the Sex Pistols' legacy - a still-vibrant new wave of anti- rock stars." The Independent (London, England). Independent Print Ltd. Accessed 31 May 2002. HighBeam Research. 13 May 2013 (subscription required)
- DeRogatis, Jim. "'Pink Flag' still flies in the face of rock history." Chicago Sun-Times. Sun-Times News Group. 18 May 2003. HighBeam Research. Accessed 13 May 2013 (subscription required)
- "Magic Numbers and XTC raise funds for Salisbury musician." BBC News Wiltshire. 14 Dec 2010. Accessed 20 May 2013. 
- Tommy Udo (September 2006). "Did Punk kill prog?". Classic Rock 97.
- Morgan, Frances. "The power of pop." New Statesman (1996). New Statesman Ltd. 10 Sep 2007. HighBeam Research. 13 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Parlindh.com[dead link]
- Blair Blake (2001). "Augustember 2001 E.V". Tool Newsletter. Retrieved 2006-04-28.
- "Eyes Wide Open"[dead link]
- Mike Portnoy Pledges Alliance to One Nation Under Prog
- An Overview of Metal Genres on GEPR
- Interview with Christofer Johnsson, leader of symphonic metal pioneers Therion
- Petridis, Alexis (September 7, 2001). "My journey into sound". London: Guardian Unlimited. Retrieved 2007-08-11.
- Campling, Chris (January 28, 2006). "Prog rock? Just say yes". London: Times Online. Retrieved 2007-08-11.
- Serpick, Evan (May 9, 2005). "Prog Rocks Again". Entertainment Weekly.
- "Prog's progeny" Rick Wakeman recommendations (The Guardian)
- Heisel, Scott (January 2010). "File Under: Nu-Arena Rock". Alternative Press (Cleveland, Ohio: Alternative Press Magazines Inc.) (258): 91. ISSN 1065-1667.
- "Anathema: Weather Systems". PopMatters. 25 April 2012. Retrieved 2012-09-22.
- "Coheed and Cambria music review". Entertainment Weekly. September 16, 2005. Retrieved 2008-04-17.
- BBC Berkshire: Reading Festival Information
- "Danish new prog from Mew". Archant Regional. February 3, 2006. Retrieved 2009-06-12.[dead link]
- Krzysztof Skonieczny (July 22, 2007). "Renowned British band Porcupine Tree to perform". Lifeboat Limited. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
- Bloom, Matt (Feb 2008). "Derrick Frost: Chiodos' Post Prog Powerhouse". DRUM! Magazine.
- Serpick, Evan (May 5, 2005). "For New-Prog Hogs". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
- |J. A. Barroso. (2002). Enciclopedia de la música progresiva en España
- "Outsight Radio Hours 7-Apr-2013 interview". Archive.org. Retrieved 5 May 2013.
- "Pat Mastelotto interview on Outsight Radio Hours". Archive.org. Retrieved 5 May 2013.
- Informaworld.com, Covach, John. "Echolyn and American Progressive Rock." Contemporary Music Review 18.4 (1999):Web.
- RoSfest home page
- Progressivenation2009.com[dead link]
- BBC Prog Rock Britannia 2008
- DeRogatis, Jim. "ROCK 'N' ROLL." Chicago Sun-Times. Sun-Times News Group. 4 Oct 1993. HighBeam Research. Accessed 19 May 2013 (subscription required)
- Holm-Hudson, K. (October 2001). Progressive Rock Reconsidered. Routledge. ISBN 0-8153-3714-0.
- Brian L. Knight. "Rock in the Name of Progress (Part VI -"Thelonius Punk")". Retrieved 2006-09-19.
- Lucky, Jerry. The Progressive Rock Files. Burlington, Ontario: Collector's Guide Publishing, Inc (1998), 304 pages, ISBN 1-896522-10-6 (paperback). Gives an overview of progressive rock's history as well as histories of the major and underground bands in the genre.
- Lucky, Jerry. The Progressive Rock Handbook. Burlington, Ontario: Collector's Guide Publishing, Inc. (2008), 352 pages, ISBN 978-1-894959-76-6 (paperback). Reviews hundreds of progressive rock bands and lists their recordings. Also provides an updated overview, similar to The Progressive Rock Files.
- Macan, Edward. Rocking the Classics: English Progressive Rock and the Counterculture. Oxford: Oxford University Press (1997), 290 pages, ISBN 0-19-509887-0 (hardcover), ISBN 0-19-509888-9 (paperback). Analyzes progressive rock using classical musicology and also sociology.
- Martin, Bill. Listening to the Future: The Time of Progressive Rock. Peru, Ill.: Carus Publishing Company (1998), 356 pages, ISBN 0-8126-9368-X (paperback). An enthusiastic analysis of progressive rock, intermixed with the author's Marxist political views.
- Snider, Charles. The Strawberry Bricks Guide To Progressive Rock. Chicago, Ill.: Lulu Publishing (2008) 364 pages, ISBN 978-0-615-17566-9 (paperback). A veritable record guide to progressive rock, with band histories, musical synopses and critical commentary, all presented in the historical context of a timeline.
- Stump, Paul. The Music's All That Matters: A History of Progressive Rock. London: Quartet Books Limited (1997), 384 pages, ISBN 0-7043-8036-6 (paperback). Smart telling of the history of progressive rock focusing on English bands with some discussion of American and European groups. Takes you from the beginning to the early 1990s.
Further reading 
- Hegarty, Paul; Halliwell, Martin (25 August 2011). Beyond and before: Progressive rock since the 1960s. Continuum. pp. xii+328. ISBN 978-0-8264-4075-4, ISBN 978-0-8264-2332-0 (paperback) Check