You know what it’s like: ask 10 historians for the causes of the First World War and you’ll get 10 different answers. Ask 10 prog fans to populate a double disc of the best prog new and old from the EMI catalogue, and it’d be handbags at bloody dawn. Given the community’s passionate, forthright, often completely divergent views on the music celebrated within these pages, compiling a cohesive compilation is a fool’s errand, and Prog’s own beloved editor Jerry Ewing is just the man!
This is the third time he’s curated such a set from the EMI archive and, looking at it objectively, this addition makes for another rewarding and informative listen.
Aphrodite’s Child’s The Four Horsemen, BJH’s Hymn and Camel’s Supertwister set the tone on disc one, with Van der Graaf’s Killer, Kevin Ayers’ Hurdy Gurdy Man and IQ’s Frequency racked up behind them. The second disc features neo goodness from Marillion and Pallas, the modern stylings of Spock’s Beard, Riverside, Sound Of Contact and Maschine, with classic Rush and Steve Hackett in there for good measure.
Twenty six tracks of solid, diverse music, shedding reassuring light on prog’s heritage and current rude health.