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Thread: Thjis Van Leer on the current state of progressive rock

  1. #26
    Member Zeuhlmate's Avatar
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  2. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by Zeuhlmate View Post
    Except that Zappas wasn't the only one - e.g. Henry Cow and a few others.
    Yes. It's an exaggeration to say that Zappa was the only one. But in my opinion he is the most defining figure of progressive rock music. He was the one to conceive rock music as a medium of serious art (by serious I'm not referring just to its content, or its tone but to its intentions. To destroy seriousness is a serious intention ). And the way he did it was absolutely influential on much of the best music that came after: the Canterburys, the Cows, the Giants, the Magmas - they all have a debt there. Whether one ones to call him Prog or not, there is no serious discussion for progressive rock that does not acknowledge his immense significance for the evolution of the music.

  3. #28
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    ^Titties and Beer.
    If it isn't Krautrock, it's krap.

  4. #29
    Orange Tick Squasher Buddhabreath's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yodelgoat View Post
    .. Its ALL DIRIVATIVE. there are only 12 notes. (Unless you don't play a tuned instrument)
    ...
    Well not quite. Harry Partch devised an 43 just intonation scale and built instruments to play his compositions based on that scale. He's not by any means the only one to explore what in the west might be called "microtone" scales.

    Back to the topic, Thijs has every right to his opinion, Zappa is undoubtedly a seminal figure but I don't know why he would claim him as the only one unless it is out of pique or simpley being unaware of the landscape. Still, what is prog is in the ear of the beholder and it is a fruitless and to me ultimately a meaningless debate. Music, like technology and culture will progress along with civilization IMO (however the later is not guaranteed).
    Last edited by Buddhabreath; 02-10-2019 at 04:46 PM.
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  5. #30
    Member jarmsuh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JKL2000 View Post
    This also makes me wonder how different Focus 11 is from the band's previous albums? Have they progressed to a whole new sound?
    The new one is not progressive rock like the rest of it, it's classic rock with Jazz

  6. #31
    Member SunshipVoyager1976's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zappathustra View Post
    Just for clarity's sake, I don't think Thjis says that new prog is shite, or it doesn't deserve to exist. Just that it is not progressive in his opinion.
    I agree. Saying you find something regressive rather than progressive isn't hating on it, simply putting forth a personal observation over a confusion in terms.

  7. #32
    Member jarmsuh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SunshipVoyager1976 View Post
    I agree. Saying you find something regressive rather than progressive isn't hating on it, simply putting forth a personal observation over a confusion in terms.
    We call that shit Neo-Progressive...

  8. #33
    Member dgtlman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sean View Post
    Pretty ironic from a guy that just spent the last week on the fu&*ing "Prog Boat"!
    Yep lots of pix showing him *faking* having a good time

  9. #34
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    I'm fine with calling Zappa the only Progressive Rock. But all this other music isn't just "Classic Rock" (or a "particular type of fusion" as Steve Hackett once called it,) so we can apply a name that has no meaning to it, and forever rid the genre of the burden attached to that clunky name. I'm not fond of the unwieldy "Flonkus," it sounds like a foot disease, but a made up name would be better than Progressive Rock.
    "If you want to see the true nature of humanity, just look at the internet."

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  10. #35
    Moderator Poisoned Youth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    I'm not fond of the unwieldy "Flonkus," it sounds like a foot disease, but a made up name would be better than Progressive Rock.
    WANTED: Sig-worthy quote.

  11. #36
    If not "Flonkus", perhaps "Bromhidrosis". Folks like Zappa, who wear an occasional python boot, would prefer that word.
    "And your little sister's immaculate virginity wings away on the bony shoulders of a young horse named George who stole surreptitiously into her geography revision."

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  12. #37
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    ^ and that sounds like a lung disease.

    I'm detecting a pattern.

  13. #38
    Estimated Prophet notallwhowander's Avatar
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    Breaking news: Musician unsatisfied by the term "progressive rock."
    Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world.

  14. #39
    Progdog ThomasKDye's Avatar
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    Well, I'll put "Be In My Video" and "Suicide Chump" as way more progressive than "Ritual" any time!
    "Arf." -- Frank Zappa, "Beauty Knows No Pain" (live version)

  15. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    ^ and that sounds like a lung disease.

    I'm detecting a pattern.
    No, I was maintaining what Zappa would call "conceptual continuity". You referred to "Flonkus," as sounding like a foot disease, and I merely borrowed a word from one of Frank's songs (who says prog can't be educational?):

    Now scientists call this disease
    Brohmidrosis
    But us regular folks
    Who might wear tennis shoes
    Or an occasional python boot
    Know this exquisite little inconvenience
    By the name of: STINK FOOT!


    The crux of the biscuit, as it were.
    "And your little sister's immaculate virginity wings away on the bony shoulders of a young horse named George who stole surreptitiously into her geography revision."

    Occasional musical musings on https://darkelffile.blogspot.com/

  16. #41
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Dark Elf View Post
    No, I was maintaining what Zappa would call "conceptual continuity". You referred to "Flonkus," as sounding like a foot disease, and I merely borrowed a word from one of Frank's songs (who says prog can't be educational?):

    Now scientists call this disease
    Brohmidrosis
    But us regular folks
    Who might wear tennis shoes
    Or an occasional python boot
    Know this exquisite little inconvenience
    By the name of: STINK FOOT!


    The crux of the biscuit, as it were.
    I didn't know all the particulars, and hadn't heard the term before, but I more or less grokked what you were saying, and who it came from. I was commenting on what the word sounds like. And it does. As for "Flonkus" I was thinking more like toenail fungus than stinkfoot, but your post was still a good one.
    "If you want to see the true nature of humanity, just look at the internet."

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  17. #42
    Member Since: 3/27/2002 MYSTERIOUS TRAVELLER's Avatar
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    Thijs has grown into an outright curmudgeon... well, he's probably pushing 80 so whaddyawant

    and I agree that Zappa has always been progressive and he certainly did play a healthy dose of Rock so even though his brand of progressive Rock music doesn't resonate with me except for a coupla albums, most of Zappa's music was definitely progressive Rock.
    Last edited by MYSTERIOUS TRAVELLER; 02-11-2019 at 12:37 AM.
    Why is it whenever someone mentions an artist that was clearly progressive (yet not the Symph weenie definition of Prog) do certain people feel compelled to snort "thats not Prog" like a whiny 5th grader?

  18. #43
    Member Gerhard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MYSTERIOUS TRAVELLER View Post
    Thijs has grown into an outright curmudgeon... well, he's probably pushing 80 so whaddyawant
    He's anything but a curmudgeon in person... Last week he was one of the most visible musicians on the ship, catching parts of many other bands' sets, sitting in with In Continuum and probably others, jamming with various musicians in the piano lounge, and with street musicians in Cozumel (so I heard), etc. He was delightfully engaging all week, just a lovely guy, from what I saw.

  19. #44
    Quote Originally Posted by Zappathustra View Post
    Another traitor to the cause of the Prog?

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.lou...of-todays-prog
    Unfortunately Thijs Van Leer is spot on.
    I'd be interested to read the rest of the article. I don't buy music mags because music is something I prefer to listen to or interactively discuss with the beautiful people of "Progressive Ears".

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  23. #48
    "I don’t think our music is progressive. Our music nowadays is a bit progressive, it’s evolutionary, but it’s also very regressive, when we are very classical. I don’t really want to use the word progressive too much" - Thijs van Leer (Focus)

    "It's just, you know, emotional music really, I think. I don't think it is progressive, you know, we've been doing the same thing for 30 years so that's not very progressive ha ha!! It's the outside world that wants to put some little tag to it, a label. It's not the musicians, what we are doing is kinda playing the music that we like and exploring new avenues as we go. If you want it to call it Progressive Rock that would be okay by me, but I mean it wouldn't be a term that I would use." Andrew Latimer (Camel)

    "...Van der Graaf were not particularly that progressive a group in terms of the way that's inherently viewed, and much of what I've done has not been “progressive”
    My stance has softened to the extent that if I can find an environment in which I can do and present what I do – or we as a band can do and present what we do – without any compromise, and be given a platform to do that ..." - Peter Hammill (Van der Graaf Generator)

    "I believe music really passes between one soul and another. It's a language.
    It's a language of emotion. The whole idea, really, of Progressive Music was. (Pause).....I don't like the term "Progressive Music" because it sounds a bit pseudointellectual. Which, really it is not; you know. All Progressive Music is; is music that uses European influences rather than American influences. You know; that's the main hallmark of Progressive Music. As far as being one of the people who pioneered it, I supposed in a way I was, but; you know. It really started before me. Probably the originators were the Beatles.
    And I think all of a sudden there was this urge to try and be original and to look for something original. And therefore, one would have to look in a different place.
    And therefore, you got all the modal things. So, it is essentially, music from a different influence. It is Rock and Roll actually from a different influence than American music. That's all it is really." - Greg Lake (Emerson, Lake & Palmer)

    "Progressive is basically a blending of three elements: the song, the improvisation inspired by jazz and the composition in classical style. This cocktail is interpreted in different ways in every country: in England, for instance, Celtic, rock and blues influences prevail. In Italy we have to cope with our classical tradition: the melodramma, Respighi, Puccini, Mascagni but also all the contemporary classical composers. It’s in this legacy, in my opinion, that the specificity of Italian Progressive Rock is concealed" - Franco Mussida (Premiata Forneria Marconi)

  24. #49
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    I read the article yesterday.

    It's a bit of a clickbait heading, but there's not much else going on in the interview other than how much he still enjoys performing.

  25. #50
    Occipital Provocatee Plasmatopia's Avatar
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    Personally I don't care if the music is actually progressive or what it is called. I don't think there's anything wrong with trying to give a name to a perceived genre (pick a name for the genre, any name) so we can at least attempt to have a conversation about music. And I don't think what the artists think on the subject is particularly relevant. If we followed that logic to its extreme we might find various artists suggesting their own terms for their music, denying similarity to any other music or attempting to artificially define their own narrow genre. I think it's better for someone (or several someones) from an outside vantage point and perspective to label it.
    Just sitting at home rocking back and forth and jealously caressing my invisible collection of theoretical assets.

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