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Thread: Why the recent obsession with UK?

  1. #1
    Member Digital_Man's Avatar
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    Why the recent obsession with UK?

    These days it seems UK ranks among GG, KC etc among prog fans. I don't get it. They only put out two proper albums yet prog fans seem to spooge over them. I don't dislike them but I don't see why they are held in such high regard. The last few times I've gone to a prog festival the after hours bands are playing them, they've done NF once as a headliner, and have popped up on other occasions. I can only assume part of this is because of their recent reunion. I think in a few years they will be like "eh" kind of like the way people are now with Nektar.

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by Digital_Man View Post
    These days it seems UK ranks among GG, KC etc among prog fans. I don't get it. They only put out two proper albums yet prog fans seem to spooge over them. I don't dislike them but I don't see why they are held in such high regard. The last few times I've gone to a prog festival the after hours bands are playing them, they've done NF once as a headliner, and have popped up on other occasions. I can only assume part of this is because of their recent reunion. I think in a few years they will be like "eh" kind of like the way people are now with Nektar.
    We clearly disagree, in that to me the answer to your question is simple: though they only put out two albums, those albums are of unusually high quality, with the debut being one of the top handful of prog albums ever made, IMHO. Because of their illustrious membership, they also will continue to get more attention than most equally short-lived groups, particularly from fans of Bruford/Wetton-era KC, as well as Roxy Music, Asia, etc.

    Again: to me, the answer to your question is a simple "because they deserve it."
    Last edited by NorthNY Mark; 05-15-2013 at 02:03 PM.

  3. #3
    Member Phlakaton's Avatar
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    I really enjoy those two albums - and being such a big Bruford and Wetton fan just makes it all the sweeter to hear. Plus - everyone has their own favorites.

  4. #4
    That first UK album was hugely inspirational for me. By all accounts it is a classic! Also IMHO, one of the first albums to combine both progressive and fusion elements. Love it! I still listen to it all the time!

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    Parrots Ripped My Flesh Dave (in MA)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Digital_Man View Post
    prog fans seem to spooge over them
    Stay classy, DM.

  6. #6
    And including the Live the album they are just AMAZING to me.....Jobson and Wetton perform magic together. And to be honest, I never felt Holdsworth played any better....Jobson maybe a goofball when it comes to marketing but everything he touches turns to gold IMO.... These 2 albums I think have always be held in high regard here...I think we never thought they ever play together again....Nektar is a whole diff ball of prog...Love their old stuff but Roye just doesn't do it anymore for me and I think some ppl are still pissed off at him anyway....and its not the original band either.

  7. #7
    Member Paulrus's Avatar
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    It's widely viewed that the UK debut was one of -- if not THE -- last great prog album of the 70s. And considering the band members and their pedigrees it's no wonder they are held in such high regard. You may not care for it, but as they say -- YMMV.

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    Connoisseur of stuff. Obscured's Avatar
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    In this case perhaps, less is more. A lot of "What if's" too. And live? Caught 'em a few times in the'70s, both line-ups. Second to none.
    "Henry Cow always wanted to push itself, so sometimes we would write music that we couldn't actually play I found that very encouraging." - Lindsay Cooper, 1998
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  9. #9
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    It's also because of the recent reunion and Jobson and Wetton activity.

  10. #10
    Connoisseur of stuff. Obscured's Avatar
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    From the first post-
    Quote Originally Posted by Digital_Man View Post
    . I can only assume part of this is because of their recent reunion. .
    "Henry Cow always wanted to push itself, so sometimes we would write music that we couldn't actually play I found that very encouraging." - Lindsay Cooper, 1998
    "I have nothing to do with Endless River. Phew! This is not rocket science people, get a grip." - Roger Waters, 2014
    "I'm a collector. And I've always just seemed to collect personalities." - David Bowie, 1973

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Paulrus View Post
    It's widely viewed that the UK debut was one of -- if not THE -- last great prog album of the 70s. And considering the band members and their pedigrees it's no wonder they are held in such high regard. You may not care for it, but as they say -- YMMV.
    Yeah....what he said.

  12. #12
    Member Man In The Mountain's Avatar
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    UK was also the first band to do the Kessel Run in less than twelve parsecs.


  13. #13
    I've only heard a UK song here or there on internet radio. Is it worth going back and giving them a proper listen?
    Prog Rocket An Exploration of Progressive Rock Music

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by progrocket View Post
    I've only heard a UK song here or there on internet radio. Is it worth going back and giving them a proper listen?
    Instrumentation is second to none...Question is do u like Wettons vocals...

  15. #15
    Member Zeuhlmate's Avatar
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    Great albums, especially the first, there is so much to like.
    I think I have listened to the chase on Nevermore a million times!

  16. #16
    i somewhat agree that UK gets lumped in with the greats withjout really having a large catalog but i suppose quality trumps numbers ever time, imo the debut is the best with the live and second being not on the same level. so they were really good but some like em more than me.

  17. #17
    Know i'm in the minority but I prefer the second album, though the debut is a classic!

  18. #18
    I'm here for the moosic NogbadTheBad's Avatar
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    I think it's mainly due to their recent return to touring and the Wetton's improved vocal performances. I've seen Jobson twice at NF and enjoyed the set's a lot despite the (IMHO) unnecessarily delayed starts (diva/perfectionist?).

    I'm less of a UK fanatic when it comes to the albums, I like the first album a lot but not much of a fan of Danger Money.
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  19. #19
    they're no Glass Hammer but, you know, they were pretty damn good on that first album

    and back in the day, when that album came out, it fried minds as no one sounded like that. adding Holdsworth to the mix, well.... spectacular and super inspiring stuff.

    the second album's got some great tunes on too but seemed more forced (to me), as if they were trying too hard to be (God help us) "Prog". that first album had a very original sound and mix of influences, imho.

    the very first album is highly recommended. i can't speak to any "recent obsessions" but there is a reason it's considered a classic by most fans of progressive rock music. the pedigree of course made folks take notice but for me the originality of the sound, the excellent tunes and the performances were all game changing.

    crap - now i have to put it on.... sheesh!

    K
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  20. #20
    Estimated Prophet notallwhowander's Avatar
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    They are a pretty divisive band, from what I can tell. It's just that the people who love them, really love them. Any reunion is going to drum up corresponding support.

    I've been steadfastly in the don't-care-for-them camp myself. The first album proving pretty much impenetrable to my ears. However, for the very first time, a month or so ago, I played "In the Dead of the Night" and it actually sounded like music. Can't say I like Jobson's keyboard sounds at all, but it was definitely a step forward in understanding what some folks hear in them.
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  21. #21
    Don't forget we got to see Boozio live...First time for me...Awesome....

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Digital_Man View Post
    These days it seems UK ranks among GG, KC etc among prog fans. I don't get it.
    That's because humans have differing tastes. There's nothing to 'get', you just have different tastes. Not a big deal. It's subjective after all.

    I am one that puts the first UK at the classic stature. I'll bet there are albums you believe are classics that I don't. And I'll bet there are albums that we would both consider classics.

    If I had to choose an entire catalog, I'd choose KC, GG, PFM, Banco, Genesis as better. But the first UK is as good as any single album by the above bands.

    They only put out two proper albums yet prog fans seem to spooge over them. I don't dislike them but I don't see why they are held in such high regard.
    Again, differing tastes.

    I hold them in such high regards for the same reason I hold other albums in high regards; top notch musicianship, complexity, great melodies, emotional content, etc. You've got Bruford at the height of his ability, Jobson with chops to spare, Wetton in great voice, and the unbelievable Holdsworth!

    The last few times I've gone to a prog festival the after hours bands are playing them, they've done NF once as a headliner, and have popped up on other occasions. I can only assume part of this is because of their recent reunion. I think in a few years they will be like "eh" kind of like the way people are now with Nektar.
    I can't speak for others, but based on their first album alone, they will never be 'eh' for me.
    And if there were a god, I think it very unlikely that he would have such an uneasy vanity as to be offended by those who doubt His existence - Russell

  23. #23
    Member Brian Griffin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Digital_Man View Post
    These days it seems UK ranks among GG, KC etc among prog fans.
    I wouldn't rank them in the same (Demetrio) Stratosphere with GG or Crimso, and would be very surprised if very many others did

    Quote Originally Posted by Digital_Man View Post
    I think in a few years they will be like "eh" kind of like the way people are now with Nektar.
    Nektar are as magic as ever to my ears

    BG
    "When Yes appeared on stage, it was like, the gods appearing from the heavens, deigning to play in front of the people."

  24. #24
    Recently Resurrected zombywoof's Avatar
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    Instrumentally, UK are great. It's just Wetton's vocals that don't do it for me. He's a wonderful bassist, of course, but I always found him the weakest of King Crimson vocalists. In my opinion...

  25. #25
    Member Sputnik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeuhlmate View Post
    Great albums, especially the first, there is so much to like.
    I think I have listened to the chase on Nevermore a million times!
    A million? I didn't even start counting until I'd hit six million. Get with the program, dude!



    Just kidding! Couldn't agree more about Nevermore. For me, this is the kind of music that defines what Prog is all about, and is why it is so compelling for me. I probably could hear Nevermore six million times and never tire of it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Griffin View Post
    I wouldn't rank them in the same (Demetrio) Stratosphere with GG or Crimso, and would be very surprised if very many others did
    It's a difficult comparison, as Area, GG, and KC have so much output. I personally would say that the first UK album ranks right up there with the best output of the touchstone '70s greats. But it's difficult to put UK as a band in the same category of bands that have released many high quality albums over a longer career. UK, particularly that first line-up, always had a "mystique." They aren't at that top-tier in some respects, but in others, particularly musically on the strength of the debut, they are for me. so in many ways, it's a tough call.

    I am among those who count that first album as sort of a "last gasp" of the great 70s Prog scene. When I first found out Jobson was really returning to playing, I have to confess to some rather giddy schoolgirl behavior quite unbecoming to my normal giddy schoolgirl facade. Seeing that first Jobson reunion tour was really pretty damn exciting. For me, UK just carries that kind of mystique, or did for a long time.

    I've now seen Jobson/UK in one for or another three, possibly four times since his return. All good shows, some very good indeed. It was great to see him with Wetton, but at this point, I've seen enough of the UK revisiting. What I'd really like from Jobson now is some new music. I thought UKZ had promise, but that promise remains unfulfilled, imo. If he sticks to just playing the old stuff, then it wouldn't surprise me if the reaction to another Jobson tour would be sort of "meh." Much as I love UK, I'm certainly taking a pass until the focus is on some new stuff.

    Bill

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