Tillison aimed to escape downbeat label

Andy Tillison wanted to make sure The Tangent’s eighth album A Spark In The Aether was more fun than its predecessor – in order to avoid being pigeonholed as a downbeat band.

Le Sacre Du Travail, launched in 2013, drew acclaim for its strong concept and musicianship, but he didn’t want to continue in the same direction.

Tillison tells Prog: “Le Sacre was ambitious. It was very complex, and it took ages to write and put together.

“I’m proud of what we achieved with that record – but at the same time it put The Tangent into a kind of Roger Waters arena of ‘Is this what they’re gonna do? Be eternally depressing and spend the rest of their lives commenting on how bad things are?’

“I thought, ‘Fuck that! There are plenty of life experiences, some of them are downers and some of them are uppers. Why not celebrate good times too?’”

That’s one of the reasons Tillison indulged his love of disco music on A Spark In The Aether. “It’s well known among Tangent fans that I’m an absolute total disco freak,” he states.

And he doesn’t feel he’s exploring new territory by bringing fun into the music. “Prog rock is the Breaking Bad of rock music,” he says. “Whoever portrayed this as being some kind of pretentious broomstick-up-your-ass music? Honestly, it’s the most fun music in the world.”

The full interview appears in the latest edition of Prog, on sale now in print, digital and via TeamRock+.

Prog's Prophet: The Tangent

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Not only is one-time online news editor Martin an established rock journalist and drummer, but he’s also penned several books on music history, including SAHB Story: The Tale of the Sensational Alex Harvey Band (opens in new tab), a band he once managed, and the best-selling Apollo Memories (opens in new tab) about the history of the legendary and infamous Glasgow Apollo. Martin has written for Classic Rock and Prog and at one time had written more articles for Louder than anyone else (we think he's second now). He’s appeared on TV and when not delving intro all things music, can be found travelling along the UK’s vast canal network.