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Chicago's Robert Lamm reveals love of prog rock

Robert Lamm of American legends Chicago has told Prog that he checks out younger bands all the time.

“I enjoy hearing fresh music in a genre that seems to be concerned with extended compositions, rather than only songs,” says the keyboard player. “A lot of today’s music does have a connection with early Chicago, in that sense. And perhaps some of the more recent Chicago sounds as well.”

Lamm reveals that he enjoys the lyrical approach taken by some bands.

“I like the subject matter they deal with. Much of what they write is hopeful, spiritual and uplifting. That is, when it’s not heartbreaking.”

He is also impressed with the music’s diversity.

“Some of it is synth driven, and quite ambient. While other bands are guitar driven. Yet others are heavily slanted towards the vocals. For the most part, these artists require patience when you listen to them, which is not a bad thing. It’s a treat to hear the complexity and competence of the playing.”

So, which bands have impressed Lamm? “I quite like TesseracT, Transatlantic, Coshish, No-Man, BigElf. Oh, and Opeth and Anathema. There’s just so much great talent out there in the progressive world. I want to keep up to date with it all.”

Writer and broadcaster Jerry Ewing is the Editor of Prog Magazine which he founded for Future Publishing in 2009. He grew up in Sydney and began his writing career in London for Metal Forces magazine in 1989. He has since written for Metal Hammer, Maxim, Vox, Stuff and Bizarre magazines, among others. He created and edited Classic Rock Magazine for Dennis Publishing in 1998 and is the author of a variety of books on both music and sport, including Wonderous Stories; A Journey Through The Landscape Of Progressive Rock, as well as sleevenotes for many major record labels. He lives in North London and happily indulges a passion for AC/DC, Chelsea Football Club and Sydney Roosters.