Prog Readers' Poll 2014

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Aching arms time again! It is, of course, great that every year, more and more of you cast your votes in the Prog Readers’ Poll. But spare a thought for the poor souls who have to count them all up! Only joking of course, we’re honoured that so many of you take the time to let us know what you’ve enjoyed in the world of great music.

It’s been another good year for prog, and the diverse spread of artists who take up their positions in each category is a pleasant reminder of the wonderful breadth of talent we are able to convey to you with every issue.

At the end of the day, it is all about the music, and it’s always a joy to announce to the artists themselves that they’ve been successful in their respective categories, simply because it’s great to note how excited they are, which largely shines through in their gracious thanks. By and large, this year was a very close run thing, with literally one or two votes separating so many nominees. Massive congratulations to everyone who got nominated. And a heartfelt thanks to all of you for voting. I think my arm’s gone to sleep…

Jerry Ewing

Editor

Album Of The Year

1 OPETH – Pale Communion

2 ANATHEMA – Distant Satellites

3 IQ – The Road Of Bones

4 PINK FLOYD – The Endless River

5 THE PINEAPPLE THIEF – Magnolia

6 STEVE ROTHERY – The Ghosts Of Pripyat

7 FLYING COLORS – Second Nature

8 TRANSATLANTIC – Kaleidoscope

9 iamthemorning – Belighted

10 DAVE KERZNER – New World

“I’m baffled people even know who we are, let alone liking our stuff! If I’m gonna stop being modest for a second, of course I think we’re a good band, and I think we did a good record in Pale Communion. Not too surprising, I gather, since I’m in the band. Thank you very much collectively from us in Opeth!”

Mikael Åkerfeldt

Band Of The Year

1 OPETH

2 MARILLION

3 ANATHEMA

4 PINK FLOYD

5 THE ENID

6 TRANSATLANTIC

7 FLYING COLORS

8 IQ

9 HAKEN

10 DREAM THEATER

”We wish to extend a warm ‘thank you’ to the people who voted for us. Not too shabby for a bunch of bums from the suburbs of Stockholm! That we’re able to affect people with our music is quite humbling. I even like that some people absolutely hate our music. I prefer the liking part, but any proper reaction is a good result in this line of ‘work’, and in times like these. As long as we do something to stir things up, I’m happy. I’m going to a dinner tonight with friends, and I might be boasting a tad. Thanks to you guys, they’ll think I’m a prick. It’s worth it. It’s a fantastic honour.”

Mikael Åkerfeldt ** **

Female Vocalist Of The Year

1 LEE DOUGLAS (Anathema)

2 KATE BUSH

3 MARJANA SEMKINA (iamthemorning)

4 ANNEKE VAN GIERSBERGEN

5 OLIVIA SPARNENN (Mostly Autumn)

6 ANNE-MARIE HELDER (Panic Room/Luna Rossa)

7 CHRISTINA BOOTH (Magenta)

8 FLOOR JANSEN (Nightwish)

9 SHARON DEN ADEL (Within Temptation)

10 JOANNE HOGG (Iona)

“Wow. I’m in total shock, to be honest! To be voted again by you lovely people for the third time in a row, that’s truly amazing. I’m really overwhelmed and slightly embarrassed as there are so many great female singers out there. I just wanna say thank you so much for your continued support and here’s to another great year of music!”

Lee Douglas

Bassist Of The Year

1 NICK BEGGS (Steven Wilson Band/Steve Hackett Band)

2 PETE TREWAVAS (Marillion/Transatlantic)

3 TONY LEVIN (King Crimson)

4 TIM ESAU (IQ)

5 MARIUSZ DUDA (Riverside/Lunatic Soul)

6 MARTÍN MÉNDEZ (Opeth)

7 JONAS REINGOLD (The Flower Kings/Karmakanic)

8 JOHN MYUNG (Dream Theater)

9 GEDDY LEE (Rush)

10 KEVIN FEAZEY (The Fierce & The Dead)

”It should have been Lee [Pomeroy]! Do I get a badge?”

Nick Beggs

Guitarist Of The Year

1 STEVE ROTHERY (Marillion)

2 STEVE HACKETT

3 GUTHRIE GOVAN (Steven Wilson Band/The Aristocrats)

4 JOHN PETRUCCI (Dream Theater)

5 MATT STEVENS

6 TOSIN ABASI (Animals As Leaders)

7 STEVE HOWE (Yes)

8 DAVE GREGORY (Big Big Train/Tin Spirits)

9 MIKE HOLMES (IQ)

10 JOHN WESLEY

“Huge thanks to everyone who’s voted for me. 2014 was an amazing year for me and I’m hoping that 2015 will be even better!”

Steve Rothery

Male Vocalist Of The Year

1 JOE PAYNE (The Enid)

2 VINCENT CAVANAGH (Anathema)

3 MICHAEL ÅKERFELDT (Opeth)

4 STEVE HOGARTH (Marillion)

5 DAMIAN WILSON (Threshold/Headspace)

6 PETER NICHOLLS (IQ)

7 DAN TOMPKINS (TesseracT/Skyharbor)

8 MARIUSZ DUDA (Riverside/Lunatic Soul)

9 CASEY McPHERSON (Flying Colors)

10 DAVID LONGDON (Big Big Train)

“This has come as a real surprise and I feel totally humbled. Thank you so much to everyone who voted. In previous years I have looked at this poll with admiration for the singers who have topped it, wondering if that could be me one day. I love to learn, seeking out knowledge from the greatest people who will work with me. My entire life has, is and always will be focused towards a personal development. That is why I consider acknowledgments like this one to be the greatest gift. My home is with The Enid and our Enidi family, the people who see potential in me and nurture me. Finding others who can share one vision is a rare thing, and for that I am very blessed.”

Joe Payne

Keyboard Player Of The Year

1 RICK WAKEMAN

2 ROBERT JOHN GODFREY (The Enid)

3 JORDAN RUDESS (Dream Theater)

4 MARK KELLY (Marillion)

5 NEAL MORSE

6 ADAM HOLZMAN (Steven Wilson Band)

7 RICHARD WRIGHT (Pink Floyd)

8 JOAKIM SVALBERG (Opeth)

9 ANDY TILLISON (The Tangent)

10 DAVE KERZNER

“I’m here sitting in my hotel room in Venice after a day’s filming about Vivaldi (a true prog rock star of his day, with probably the first concept album in The Four Seasons), when the message comes through that I have won the Keyboard Player Of The Year award in the 2014 Readers’ Poll and it truly has made my day. I’m sitting here naked (about to get in the shower), truly humbled and chuffed to bits. Thanks so much to everybody and I promise to be clothed when collecting the award.”

Rick Wakeman

Reissue Of The Year

1 YES – Relayer

2 KING CRIMSON – Starless

3 JETHRO TULL – A Passion Play

4 GENTLE GIANT – The Power And The Glory

5 SUPERTRAMP – Crime Of The Century

6 YES – The Yes Album

7 PINK FLOYD – The Division Bell

8 JETHRO TULL – War Child

9 GENESIS – R-Kive

10 ANTHONY PHILLIPS – Harvest Of The Heart

“Thanks to all the readers who voted for this. I’m very pleased for the members of Yes and for Steven Wilson and all who worked on putting this set together. It’s also great to see Relayer getting this level of attention. The band’s fans have always regarded it as a classic Yes album and hopefully this will help to further broaden that recognition.”

Declan Colgan, Panegyric Records

Multimedia Of The Year

1 TRANSATLANTIC – KaLIVEoscope

2 STEVE HACKETT – Live At The Royal Albert Hall

3 DREAM THEATER – Breaking The Fourth Wall

4 PETER GABRIEL – Back To Front

5 THE ENID – Crescendo

6 RUSH – R40

7 QUEEN – Live At The Rainbow ’74

8 YES – Like It Is

9 IAN ANDERSON – Thick As A Brick: Live In Iceland

10 GENESIS – Three Sides Live

Drummer Of The Year

1 MIKE PORTNOY

2 MARCO MINNEMANN (Steven Wilson Band)

3 GAVIN HARRISON (King Crimson)

4 MARTIN AXENROT (Opeth)

5 NICK D’VIRGILIO (Big Big Train)

6 IAN MOSLEY (Marillion)

7 MIKE MANGINI (Dream Theater)

8 BRANN DAILOR (Mastodon)

9 PAUL COOK (IQ)

10 CARL PALMER

“Thank you so much to the readers of Prog for this honour! I always feel weird when I win these things as music isn’t a contest. There are no ‘bests’, only ‘favourites’. That being said, I thank you all for your tremendous support this and every year. I work as hard as I do because I am a music lover just like you all! (And by the way, Prog is still my ‘favourite’ magazine!)”

Mike Portnoy

Credit: Trevor Leighton

Woman Of The Year

1 KATE BUSH

2 LEE DOUGLAS (Anathema)

3 CHRISTINA BOOTH (Magenta)

4 MARJANA SEMKINA (iamthemorning)

5 ANNEKE VAN GIERSBERGEN

6 ANNA PHOEBE

7 ANNE-MARIE HELDER (Panic Room/Luna Rossa)

8 OLIVIA SPARNENN (Mostly Autumn)

9 LESLIE HUNT (District 97)

10 FLOOR JANSEN (Nightwish)

Event Of The Year

1 KATE BUSH LIVE

2 STEVE HACKETT’S GENESIS REVISITED TOUR

3 RICK WAKEMAN’S JOURNEY TO THE CENTRE OF THE EARTH 40TH ANNIVERSARY TOUR

4 THE RETURN OF KING CRIMSON

5 MOON SAFARI/LAZULI UK TOUR

6 CRUISE TO THE EDGE

7 THE RETURN OF PINK FLOYD

8 RESONANCE FESTIVAL

9 PROG NATION

10 CELEBR8.3

Venue Of The Year

1 ROYAL ALBERT HALL, LONDON

2 BOERDERIJ, ZOETERMEER

3 THE FORUM, LONDON

4 THE ROBIN 2, BILSTON

5 THE BORDERLINE, LONDON

6 EVENTIM HAMMERSMITH APOLLO, LONDON

7 ASSEMBLY ROOMS, LEAMINGTON

8 BAND ON THE WALL, MANCHESTER

9 BIRMINGHAM SYMPHONY HALL

10 THE BEDFORD, BALHAM

Credit: Scarlet Page

_ _

Man Of The Year

1 STEVEN WILSON

2 STEVE HACKETT

3 MICHAEL ÅKERFELDT (Opeth)

4 RICK WAKEMAN

5 ROBERT FRIPP

6 MIKE PORTNOY

7 STEVE ROTHERY

8 PETER GABRIEL

9 STEVE HOGARTH

10 ROBERT JOHN GODFREY

Non-Event Of The Year

1 NO HIGH VOLTAGE

2 GENESIS SUM OF THE PARTS DOCUMENTARY

3 KATE BUSH ONLY PLAYING LONDON

4 YES – HEAVEN & EARTH

5 NO PORCUPINE TREE

6 GLASTONBURY

7 X-FACTOR

8 TRANSATLANTIC TOUR

9 HRH PROG 2

10 THE PEEL BEING DEMOLISHED

Tip For 2015

1 MESSENGER

2 iamthemorning

3 MOETAR

4 DAVE KERZNER

5 VOYAGER

6 A FORMAL HORSE

7 LEPROUS

8 AUDIOPLASTIK

9 JOUIS

10 ALCEST

“It has been a relatively short journey for Messenger. However, we’ve had an amazing response and we’re eternally grateful to everyone who supported us so far. We’re currently writing a new album that we expect to release this year as well as booking shows. It’s going to be a busy year! Thanks again!”

Jaime Gomez Arellano