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Welcome to rec.music.progressive
rec.music.progressive passed its CFV on 2nd May 1995. It is the
successor of alt.music.progressive and supersedes it. Being a rec.*
group, it has much wider distribution than a.m.p had and is aimed at
generating and disseminating discussion of progressive and
non-mainstream music with a wider audience than was previously the
case. The FAQs have been registered with news.answers and thus are
"official" in the only real sense of the word applicable to FAQs.
This FAQ is an introduction intended to give some idea of the scope
of discussions that the group supports. It attempts to present a
relatively uncontroversial and illuminating picture of what is meant
by the term "progressive music" as commonly understood in the group.
Ideally, you should read this in conjunction with FAQ 4.
It is recommended that people new to non-mainstream music read this
FAQ along with FAQ 4 before posting the perennial question "What is
progressive music?" ...
What is Progressive Music?
"Progressive rock was what happened in the early 70's when certain
brilliant instrumentalists got fed up with playing three-and-a-half
minute long songs about teenage love. Unfortunately, this led them
to start playing ten-and-a-half minute long songs about nothing in
-- Geoff Nicholson, `Big Noises: Rock Guitar in the 1990s', Quadrant
Humour aside, there are probably as many answers as there are people
reading this, and all answers contain some insight into the question
and concepts involved. The word "progressive" has been defined to
mean "forward moving", "widening in scope", "changing in increments"
and so on. However, in order to understand what is meant by
"progressive music", one must look beyond the dictionary to the usage
it has in circles where the term is common currency. Hereafter, we
shall forgo the scare-quotes and fearlessly use the term
"progressive" with wanton abandon as this should help reduce any
reservations that people feel about the more irrelevant connotations.
You will often see the term "progressive rock" used as a term
intended to cover the same field as "progressive music". "progressive
rock" is a common phrase that is generally not meant to restrict the
concept to rock-related examples. Indeed, you sometime see, for
example, people refer to ambient Eno as "progressive rock". Please
remember this is now a mnemon
For terms of discussion on rec.music.progressive(r.m.p), most
progressive music is based to some degree on: 70's Art Rock,
Canterbury, Psychedelic, Fusion, Krautrock, Classical Rock, Folk,
Space Rock, RIO, and Zeuhl Music (for a definition of these terms,
see FAQ 4) and/or many other forms of music that mainstream music is,
in many cases, completely oblivious of. Recently, in the last 10-15
years, the mainstream media has used the word progressive to describe
college music, alternative pop, and other forms of music. While this
is a common use of the word, it is not the use we are referring to on
this newsgroup. If you are reading this for the first time and you
feel progressive music focuses on bands such as The Smiths, The Cure,
Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nirvana, and/or one of the many bands
showcased on MTV's "120 Minutes" or "Alternative Nation", you will
probably prefer to read alt.music.alternative.
Naturally, one of the first desires of someone approaching this area
is to find some characteristic that defines a given piece of music as
progressive. Unfortunately, as is the case with most concepts, there
is certainly no one feature that all music deemed progressive share.
However, this detracts nothing from the comfortable use of the word
on r.m.p. Why might this be? There are two reasons I think. Firstly,
the word is best defined in its use by people versed in uttering it.
This is the case with many words and the time-worn Wittgenstein
comments regarding the impossibility of providing a definition that
specifies all and only all of things that answer to the concept
"game" are germane here. All games share no single feature that does
not allow non games under the concept as well. So it is with
"progressive". Not all progressive music shares a common
characteristic but one can trace commonalties between arbitrary
instances of the term, thus creating a huge web of interconnected
instances. For example, it
As mentioned above, the reason there is so much disagreement about
what music is progressive and how progressive it really is, is that
the term is used to describe many ostensibly different styles of
music. Many innovative and unclassifiable musics are included under
the progressive umbrella, which leads to a lot of confusion. So,
regardless of how you feel about labelling and the boundaries of the
term, when you read r.m.p., keep in mind that many people reading the
group many be coming from a completely different musical background,
and may be listening for different reasons. The term is absolutely
not limited to early Yes and Genesis. People who think this tend to
be very surprised when they first hear Henry Cow, Magma or Univers
Zero. Popular media is generally guilty for this common attitude as
this is mostly what they talk about when they undertake one of those
pointless, inaccurate and laughably insulting "Progressive Rock
Retrospective" articles. Progressive music is that which is discussed
You need a CD player. Most re-issues of lost music and most new
releases are produced for CD only. Personally, I have spent a small
fortune since discovering r.m.p and the area in general and I
consider it some of the best investments I have ever made. Do not be
intimidated by people with huge collections, encyclopaedic knowledge
as r.m.p is a friendly place where the overriding concern is to
promote the enjoyment of some of the finest music ever made that you
would simply never otherwise hear about. I am continually amazed at
the degree of interconnection between the artists, bands and music in
what is an hugely eclectic field. I find this very satisfying as it
corroborates the intuition that there is something unifying about the
field as a whole. You will find shared members, houses, instruments
etc. amongst bands you came to from radically different directions
but which are all deemed progressive.
One thing that people find suprising when their musical horizons are
broadened is that there are different ways of listening to music
depending on its characteristics. The commonly accepted sub-genres
listed in FAQ 4 often concentrate on different aspects of music. For
example, much RIO has a penchant for rhythm and requires a different
attitude in the listener to textural ambient music which may be
focusing completely on sonority to the exclusion of rhythm. The mark
of an experienced listener is being able to switch between these
different focuses quickly and not to criticise music for paying no
attention to something it is not even attempting to address. No one
form of music can address all interesting aspects of music. This
leads me to suggest that the mature and reasoned listener who is
truly interested in music will have tastes more diverse than many
people would be able to imagine. Progressive music, I have found,
addresses a particularly wide spectrum of interesting attributes.
One more thing. There is a pernicious tendency for some people to
regard progressive music as the jewel in the crown of the music. This
is simply nonsense from people with narrow musical experience. Many
experienced progressive music enthusiasts have very wise tastes
indeed and you will catch a glimpse of these from time to time. I
have done so and they have lead to very fruitful and rewarding music
explorations in many different directions. Progressive music is a
small corner of music as a whole. I encourage everyone to explore as
widely as possible. Having said this, I and presumably you as you are
reading this, suspect progressive music is a particularly interesting
corner to explore.
Discussion on r.m.p usually focuses on the lesser known progressive
bands. While Yes, Genesis, ELP, King Crimson, and the like will
always have a home on r.m.p, they also have their own mailing lists
(see FAQ 5). While almost everyone reading r.m.p is an enthusiast of
one or more of these groups, many are not terribly interested in what
kind of beer Mike Rutherford drinks, Steve Howe's favorite vegetable,
or the number of hairs on Robert Fripp's head. The purpose of this
newsgroup is to explore a wide variety of progressive music, rather
than trying to learn the most trivial facts about a few examples.
Also, the most knowledgeable people on each specific example will
almost certainly read the respective mailing lists, but may not read
r.m.p. So, while discussion of a new Yes release is a fair topic for
r.m.p (preferably, alt.music.yes), detailed analyses of Yes lyrics
might well be better off on the Yes mailing list.
As with most other newsgroups, r.m.p is better without flame wars. If
you have been on the net for more than a month, you have probably
seen several already. The best thing to do to people who flame is to
ignore them. You do not need to post a message telling everyone what
an idiot the flamer is, because that person has already let us know
that they are an idiot. The best way to avoid flames is to use tact
and be respectful. Probably nobody in the world is going to agree
with your musical opinions completely, so instead of being
inflammatory, you can carefully write a explanation of why you find
the new Genesis release substandard. The general rule of thumb is: if
you have to think twice about whether your post will upset anyone, it
is probably better not to post. Instead, find a more tactful and
respectful wording of what you want to say. However, a caveat. Given
that r.m.p is generally populated with a type who is often more
concerned about music than most, one can expect and even see the
point of occasion
It may be interesting to read what an unbiased and randomly selected
set of r.m.p readers have said about it:
"Not since the '70's when I was actually able to listen to a real
progressive radio station have I been able to pick up such excellent
music. I'm able to glean from opinions expressed here on r.m.p. as to
what artists/albums I would like (as opposed to the old days where
you could listen on the radio). Let me tell you, we've got a pretty
good batting average going! Last weekend I scored two Camel CDs,
Cairo, IQ, Nektar, Eloy and Soft Machine- all at local Best Buys or
Tower. They were all hits and no misses- great music! Can't wait to
find more. Thanks to all on r.m.p!"
*Tony Anello* (ane...@wwa.com)
"I, too, can credit r.m.p. with providing me with a long list of
bands that I'd never heard of before. Of course, the things that
have attracted me are recent releases on independent labels, most of
which I haven't been able to find anywhere locally (though there have
been some enjoyable exceptions including Iluvatar's first release
used). Anyway, thanks for helping me find about 90% of the music I'm
currently listening to, and a long list of things that I'm going to
order one of these days. Maybe one day my budget will allow me to
catch up! :)"
*Paul Konstant* (Paul_H_...@sbphrd.com)
"I also would never have heard of or heard most of the stuff I listen
to nowadays if it wasn't for this group or the GEPR; I picked up on
Henry Cow, Magma, Only A Mother, Gorky's Zygotic Mynci, and the
entire Cuneiform catalog from this group. A hearty thanks."
*David Lynch* (dfly...@starbase.spd.louisville.edu)
"I'm in the same boat. I'd have never heard about Progday '96. That
in itself has been worth all the online charges ten times over. Also
found out about IQ, Jadis, Pallas, Arena, Enchant, M Music,
Mastermind, Iluvatar, Discipline, on and on and on.... Even made the
trip up to Montreal (three times!!) to see The Musical Box. Thank you
all for letting me vent my musical opinions and learn about the best
music in all the world."
*Dave Dery* (Ski...@gnn.com)
Where To Go From Here
If this is the first time you have seen this file, you are probably
just scratching the surface. For more information on progressive
music, including mail order outlets, publications, stores that sell
much of what you will find discussed, progressive music sources on
the net, or general information on progressive music, please read the
rest of the FAQs.
This FAQ is maintained by Phil Kime(Phil...@ed.ac.uk). Comments,
questions, and criticisms are positively always welcome. This text
was taken in part from the previous versions of this FAQ, which were
maintained by Scott McMahan, and Mike Borella. The FAQs were brought
into being originally through the sterling efforts of Malcolm Humes.
Many thanks go to all of these gentlemen for their excellent work.
= Phil Kime (Phil...@ed.ac.uk) =
= Centre for Cognitive Science/Dept of Philosophy =
= University of Edinburgh =
The following people have contributed to making this file what it
Malcolm Humes (m...@emf.net)
Peter Thelen (pt...@netcom.com)
John Lukes (John....@EBay.Sun.COM)
Joerg Rhiemeier (rhie...@ibr.cs.tu-bs.de)
Rob Walker (r...@sunbar.mc.duke.edu)
Marcelo Spindola Bacha (dro...@if.ufrj.br)
Peter Stoller (afcp...@aol.com)
David Rogoff (rog...@std.teradyne.com)
John Szpara (wi...@holonet.net)
Dan Barrett (bar...@cs.umass.edu)
Ken Stuart (KEN.S...@tigerteam.org)
Jon Neill (lepa...@aol.com)
Kent Gabrin (ke...@celsiustech.se)
Alan J. Mallery (ajma...@ouray.Denver.Colorado.EDU)
Phil Zampino (zam...@squidco.com)
Mike Borella (mbor...@cs.depaul.edu)
Phil Kime (Phil...@ed.ac.uk)
About Progressive Music
Are there different categories of progressive music? (Answer
contributed in part from from Mike McLatchey)
Conventionally, yes. There are many sub-genres, and crossover genres.
Here is a brief and necessarily incomplete listing of the genres
frequently discussed on r.m.p (some text is taken from the *GEPR*
(see FAQ 5, FAQ 7 and below)).
As the name suggests, a form concentrating on ambience rather than
normal characteristics such as melody, harmony and rhythm.
*Examples:* Some Eno, Laraaji, much new age music.
A name that is used to refer to early explorative work that had roots
in pop. Quite often a display of attitude in addition to any musical
features. It is an abused term that seems to refer as much to
appearence as to music in its more common coinage.
*Examples:* Be Bop Deluxe, early Eno, Roxy Music
A region in England where a unique style originated. The region's
name has now become the label for the style of music. One of the
earliest forms recognised as progressive, Canterbury music emphasises
laconic complexity and usually sounds identifiably English. The ideas
resulting from this form of music were very original. Often quite
jazzy in a light and airy sort of way, integrating jazz influences in
*Examples:* Caravan, Soft Machine, Hatfield & The North, National
More accessibly related, bands starting with The Nice that attempted
to fuse classical music with rock structures. Often felt to be quite
pompous yet were quite successful in their time. Often a three man
*Examples:* The Nice, ELP, Le Orme, Ekseption, Trace, The Trip
Often mis-categorized by being as "new age", much of this music was
around far before that abused term was coined. Very explorative,
this is a wide open field and is typified by the use of almost all
electronic equipment, hence the name. There is often a concentration
on sonority and texture over and above other musical attributes.
Often very spacious and ethereal. Sometimes quite darkly powerful but
not in the way that ambient industrial material tends to be. The
sorts of sounds explored tend to be within the less extreme
*Examples:* 70's Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze, Steve Roach, some
Popol Vuh, later Kit Watkins, Jean-Michel Jarre
Often hard core experiemental material. The fringes of music where
almost anything can happen. Almost always difficult for the
newcomer. Considerable use of noise, found objects, music concrete
and sometimes even power tools. Generally focusing on texture and
sonority to the expense of all else. A fascinating area for the
*Examples:* Einstrzende Neubauten, Nurse With Wound, Hafler Trio,
Explorative jazz-rock: a fusion as the name suggests. Maybe a little
jazzier than most progressive music, but rockier than most jazz.
Quite a established and exciting genre with often virtuoso playing.
*Examples:* Mahavishnu Orchestra, Brand X, Iceberg, Arti+Mestieri
Slighltly politically uncorrect term used harmlessly to refer to a
form of usually rather strange rock originating from Germany in the
70s. Typified by a loose, improvisational style with a large
proportion of experimentation and slightly whimsical flavour. Often
difficult to listen to, quite sinister and covertly intellectual.
Very influential in all sorts of areas even today. Some people regard
it as the precursor to industrial music proper which is fair: there
are similarities but probably as many differences. See Chris Moon's
informative Krautrock guide at:
*Examples:* Can, Amon Dl II, Faust, Xhol, Agitation Free, early
Tangerine Dream, Ash Ra Tempel
Music that fused 20th century classical music with new rock
structures. Sometimes referred to as "chamber rock, this can be
difficult to appreciate at first as artists of this ilk were way out
on a limb and quite different. Also, it tends to be very complex,
requiring many listens to reach a fair appreciation. One of the least
understood genres about which most people are completely oblivious
yet one of the most rewarding.
*Examples:* Univers Zero, Art Zoyd, ZNR
Symphonic rock done in a typically simplified or more commercial
format. Often rich and melodious but without the complexity of
traditional progressive music. Mostly an 80's and 90's phenomenon.
*Examples:* Marillion, iQ, Pendragon, Twelfth Night, Aragon, Jadis,
Grey Lady Down
A variety of music that took simple folk songs and did something
quite new with them. There were many forms of this.
*Examples:* Emtidi, Witthser & Westrupp, Malicorne, Mellow Candle
Heavy metal that is influenced by symphonic rock or fusion. Usually
is much more complex than standard metal and emphasising virtuoso
*Examples:* Dream Theater, Fates Warning, Watchtower, Siege's Even,
Rock In Opposition (RIO)
A name coined by ex-Henry Cow drummer Chris Cutler. This type of
music consistently defies categorization (except for "RIO") and is
extremely challenging and often hard to listen to. However, it is
very rewarding in the long run. The lyrical bent is often political,
especially for those bands Cutler has a hand in. Technically, bands
like Art Zoyd and Univers Zero are RIO as they subscribed to Cutlers
broad musical ethic in its original conception. However, the label
has outgrown its original political connotations and is now used to
refer to artists potraying a similar approach to the seminal Henry
Cow, the central RIO band. See Q's and A's below for a better
description of RIO. See Phil Zampino's (zam...@squidco.com) Web site
for much information on RIO labels and artists at:
*Examples:* Henry Cow, Art Bears, Samla Mammas Manna, News From
Babel, Thinking Plague, Etron Fou Leloublan etc.
A rough term given specifically to the superb band Gong for their
unique blend of jazz fusion and extended sweeping ambience. Often
very energetic and concentrating on long jams of psychadelic tinged
soloing. Generally a high level of musicianship in tight restraint to
give a clean, atmosphere of bright and effervescent fusion. "Swooshy"
is a perfect adjective.
*Examples:* Gong, Ozric Tentacles, Neo, Carpe Diem, some Djam Karet
Like the above but without the jazz edge, more of a straight forward
type of space rock. Hawkwind were almost the be all and end all of
this genre and were the innovators.
*Examples:* Hawkwind, Amon Dl (the English line-up)
Characterized by rich keys/synths and very melodic vocals and often
structured like a piece of classical music, arranged for an extended
rock instrumentation. Very much stretching the limits of the rock
format. If someone derides progressive music, this is almost always
the sort of thing they are talking about. You will often hear this
genre mistakenly used as a synonym for the entirety of progressive
music and called "pretentious" or "overblown". Criticisms that
completely miss the point and often belie some misguided idea that
all good music must either display a certain feature or must be
simple and "direct".
*Examples:* Yes (early), Genesis (early), Camel, Atoll, Mirthrandir,
One of the truly unique and little-known areas of music typified and
largely due to the incredible French band Magma. It is a term used to
refer to a particular brand of jazz fusion, sometimes with heavy
Coltrane influences but adopting a grandiosity and harmonic language
from certain classical works, particularly Stravinsky's "Les Noces".
Unlike anything else and a personal favourite of the present FAQ
maintainer. Often powerful beyond words.
*Examples:* Magma, Weidorje, Zao, Shub-Niggurath, Honeyelk, Musique
What countries does progressive music come from?
Just about everywhere. Most people reading r.m.p are familiar with
the famous British progressive bands, and most have at least heard of
progressive acts from France, Italy, Germany and the USA. Progressive
music is truly international though. There are progressive artists
from just about every continent, as well as from many places you
would not think of. In Europe, there are artists from Poland, Sweden,
Finland, Spain, Switzerland, The Czech Republic, Austria, and Greece.
In South America, there are quite a few notable acts from Argentina,
Brasil, and Chile. Even the Middle East is represented with Zingale
from Israel. Japan has always been very strong and in Korea,
progressive music even gets radio airplay.
Is there a difference between "progressive" and "good"?
Obviously. Many progressive music fans (myself included) have been
guilty at some time of either considering all the bands they like
"progressive", or defining progressive to mean music that they
consider "good". While this seems to be a human error that many of
us make, please think twice before posting to r.m.p about a band
just because you like them. For example, I would consider bands like
Deicide "progressive" in important ways: they push the boundaries of
rhythmic interplay, play very complex music with technical skill
etc., but discussions about them do not really belong on r.m.p.
Just because an artist has released one or more progressive albums,
does that mean that everything they do is progressive?
No. This is a common misconception. Though we call them "progressive
music artists", the artists themselves are not progressive - the
music is. Once progressive does not means always progressive. There
are many examples of bands that once made great progressive music,
but have turned to churning out worthless pop music. There seems to
be a trend from progressive music to a more accessible form of music
in many bands' histories, and unfortunately, they rarely return to
what many perceive to be their best work.
Does lyrical content count towards progressive-ness?
Well written lyrics can never hurt any form of music, but there are
no rules that progressive music has to have good lyrics. Many bands
that display progressive music also display extremely poor lyrics. In
the same sense, many progressive bands are instrumental. Of course,
just because a band has good lyrics, it does not automatically make
them progressive. In other words, progressive music and intelligent
lyrics have little or no obvious correlation. Another issue to
consider is progressive music and progressive politics. While these
are two different things, there is some crossover. However, one does
not necessarily imply the other.
But didn't this form of music die in the late seventies?
No. FAQ 8 was specifically designed to give a quick overview of some
currently active artists. Please look at it. True, bands like Yes,
ELP, and Genesis have lost most of their "progressiveness", thus
making it seem like the fan base for progressive music disappeared
around 1979. However progressive music is still extremely strong. In
the eighties it was largely underground, though many artists put out
music equally as progressive as in the seventies. Now, in the
nineties, progressive music has had a revival of sorts, as dozens of
independent labels have been signing new and exciting artists. There
are hundreds of progressive, experimental and innovative bands
currently active, recording, and/or touring. In fact, today, we have
some of the finest music in the genre being made: it is just harder
to spot and find. To combat this, look at FAQ 2, FAQ 6 and FAQ 8.
How did rec.music.progressive start?
Discussions of progressive music used to occasionally happen on
newsgroups like alt.rock-n-roll and rec.music.misc, and on mailing
lists like Gibraltar as well as others dedicated to specific artist.
In mid-1992, Scott McMahan started alt.music.progressiveand gradually
a number of people wandered in and started offering reviews of new
and old music in this genre and a helping hand to new and old fans of
progressive music interested in broadening their musical horizons.
With the general degeneration of the alt.* heirachy coupled with its
limited distribution, rec.music.progressive was proposed and passed
its CFV on May 2nd 1995.
Can I talk about Yes on rec.music.progressive?
alt.music.yes exists and is the place to discuss Yes on the net.
However, since Yes was one of the more influential progressive bands,
it only makes sense that Yes should be talked about on r.m.p.
However, not everyone can agree about the "progressiveness" of newer
Yes, and many flamewars have erupted over this issue, and related
issues. So, alt.music.yes was created. While a.m.y is still a
relatively new newsgroup (created in June, 1994), it still is not
certain whether all discussion of Yes will go to a.m.y or not.
Probably not. If you are not certain which newsgroup to post Yes
material to, here is a handy guide.
Yes that has nothing to do with prog in general -- alt.music.yes
Yes in context with some other prog band(s) -- both (r.m.p and a.m.y)
A reference to Yes when discussing another prog band -- r.m.p
Pre-Rabin Yes -- a.m.y and maybe r.m.p (use your judgement)
Rabin-era Yes -- a.m.y
How much you hate Trevor Rabin or Yes in general -- neither
The point is that many people want to be able to discuss Yes in
detail without being flamed for liking the 80's and 90's version of
the band. Others would like to be able to state their (negative)
opinions about Yes without being flamed. Other prog fans do not
listen to Yes, and are tired of 90% of the discussion on r.m.p being
about Yes. The advantages of a.m.y include (hopefully) taking care of
these three issues. One possible disadvantage is that people who
might have developed an interest in other progressive rock bands via
Yes discussion on r.m.p may not get that chance any more. In any
case, these are tenative guidelines to follow. What you post and
where you post it is up to you. If you would like to avoid starting
flamewars and useless discussions, following these guidelines may
I read a review on rec.music.progressive and it made the band sound
good. But when I got the album, it was awful!! What should I do?
Nothing. People who write reviews should not be held responsible for
whether everyone reading the review agrees with them or not. Since
everyone has a different idea of what is good and what is not, take
that into consideration before buying. When reading reviews, you may
want to read as much as you can by a particular author to see if that
person's tastes seem to be close to yours. If you disagree with the
author's opinion 50% or less of the time, then you should think twice
about buying something on that person's recommendation. In general,
it is better to get a consensus of more than three opinions before
you make a purchasing decision, or even better, try to listen to the
music before buying it. While it can be very hard to find obscure
progressive music to buy, much less to listen to, you can listen to a
friend's copy first, or ask someone to tape a copy for you. I have
bought things based on minimal information (usually in the grip of a
CD frenzy at a fair with cash in my hand) and it has been truly aw
There is a progressive band I really do not like, but I do not want
to post a negative review of them because some people reading the
newsgroup might like them, or the band themselves may eventually read
the review and get mad at me. What should I do?
Post it. Negative reviews are a positive thing. Not all progressive
music is as good as the rest or even good at all. It is important to
differentiate between the excellent, good, mediocre, and poor,
especially since the average cost of a CD is $15-$20 (US) or 12-20
(UK). While not everyone will agree with your point of view, if you
present your arguments in a non-inflammatory manner, most people will
respect you for it. The deification of some progressive artists
brings a lack of perspective that in turn hurts the fans more than
helps them. By writing a negative review, even on a progressive
"sacred cow", you may make both new and experienced listeners alike
re-assess their viewpoints, which is always good. But, of course,
this does not mean you should always write negative reviews. Be fair,
Somebody said that people without formal musical training cannot
appreciate progressive music. I am a non-musician who really enjoys
progressive music, and I am insulted by this person's "elitist"
attitude. Why do people say these things?
Sometimes because of silly ideas about classical training and
sometimes because of valid insights. Training is neither necessary
nor sufficient for "real" appreciation, mainly because there is no
such thing as "real" appreciation. There are many aspects to
appreciate and everyone has their nuances. However, I will say that
an understanding of music can greatly aid your understanding of a
piece and I have found that, for example, an understanding of rhythm
greatly enhances my appreciation of much music. However, I know
classically trained musicians who adore Status Quo exactly because
analysis is so pointless there. Musical training cannot hurt. There
are no guideliens for this. Some people find that an appriciation of
the exact music score of a piece ruins their nave appreciation. I
have found this on occasion: learning to play a line you admire can
spoil its mystique. This question has no answer. Experiment for
Are there any proggresive musicians on the net?
Many, including Kit Watkins, Allan Holdsworth, Episode, Now,
Anekdoten, Yezda Urfa, Echolyn, Kurt Rongey, Marco Olivetti (TNR),
Mind Gallery, Kalaban, Tony Levin, Mastermind and many others.
So what are their addresses? I want to write to them!
If they want people to write, they will advertise the fact. However
if they post to r.m.p, you can always reply.
Are there any mail order sources or record label representatives on
Many and the number is growing. See FAQ 2. For example, one of the
first net mail order outlets was started by Ranjit Padmanabhan and
Ken Golden of Laser's Edge can take credit card email orders. Expect
this to become more and more common with mail order outlets putting
their catalogues on-line. There are a few reputable outlets currently
interested in this. Keep your eyes open for anouncements.
Is it true that Phil Collins has not always been the vocalist in
Yes. There were 6 Genesis albums before Phil Collins took over on
lead vocals, although he did the occasional song and backing vocals
before this. Peter Gabriel was the lead vocalist from 1969 until his
departure in 1974.
What is the relation between Renaissance and Illusion?
From ste...@hpopd.pwd.hp.com (Steve Pearce): The original Renaissance
was formed from the ashes of the Yardbirds. The main members were:
Keith Relf, Jane Relf, Jim McCarty, Louis Cennamo (I think) and
someone else. They released a self titled album in about 1969 or
1970. They recorded a second album (called *Illusion*) but I believe
it didn't get a full release at the time. The band then went through
major personnel changes, in fact went the dust cleared NONE of the
original members remained.
The new line up was: Annie Haslam, John Tout, Jon Camp, Terry
Sullivan and a guitarist who names escapes me. They released an album
called *Prologue*(interestingly on the later *Live from Carnegy
Hall*, Annie calls *Prologue* their first album, the new lineup
obviously didn't consider the output of the previous lineup).
Although the lineup was new there were still some continuity as some
of the songs on *Prologue* and the next album (*Ashes Are Burning*)
were written or co-written by Jim McCarty. By the third album (*Turn
of the Cards*) Michael Dunford who had been writing for the band and
had played on a part time basis joined the band full time and this
line up is considered to be the "Classic" line up of Renaissance.
In the meantime some of the original members of Renaissance (I think
Keith Relf had died by this time) got together and formed a new band
called Illusion, I think Eddie Knightsbridge and John Hawken were
also members (come to think of it I think Hawken was in the original
Renaissance as well). They released an album called *Out of the Mist*
and a self titled one (I've heard they recorded maybe a couple more
but have never seen them).
I have heard that Magma created their own language. Is this true?
Yes. Magma's drummer (and leader) Christian Vander created the
language "Kobaan", which is what you are hearing sung on most Magma
albums. Recently, work has gone into compiling a phrasebook of Kobaan
worlds and their Engligh translations. You can find this on the Magma
home page at
From Marcelo Spindola Bacha (dro...@if.ufrj.br): Kobaan is not
exactly a Vander idea, it was based in an original project from Klaus
Blasquiz, as results of some of their studies about representing
graphically other kind of phonemas ... Kobaan is not really a
language, it is quite incomplete, and it is always changing, as
Vander says. It sounds rather Germanic and slightly Russian.
What is "The Progressive Music Survey" that people talk about? What
is its relation to the Gibraltar Encyclopedia of Progressive Rock?
How do I get a copy?
They are the same thing. It is a huge listing of progressive bands,
with their discographies and reviews and overviews of their
releases. It was originally compiled by Dave Markfield in late 1991,
but a more recent version was put together by Mike Taylor in early
1993. It is an A to Z dictionary of progressive music, and though it
is still incomplete, it contains info on over 1100 artists. To get an
ascii copy, ftp to
Please not that the HTML versions are always the latest; the ascii
copies are usually not quite up to date. Mike Taylor made a printed,
bound version available but it is currently sold out. Mail him for
more information at ge...@plato.museum.tulane.edu
The *GEPR* (see FAQ 4and FAQ 7) is now properly on-line at its new
home in the US. There are currently two mirrors, one in Europe and
another in the US. Choose the site nearest to you for the fastes
Home site (maintained by Mike Taylor)
UK mirror (maintained by Phil Kime)
US mirror (maintained by Adam Levin)
NOTE: If you are looking for an idea of what particular bands sound
like, or are new to prog and want to get an idea of what is out
there, I strongly suggest perusing the survey.
Are bands like Pink Floyd, Supertramp, Styx, Kansas and Rush
That depends on who you ask. There are many people who do consider
them progressive, and many who do not. There are albums by each of
these bands that may generally be considered progressive, but even
some die-hard fans of the aformentioned groups will admit that each
has put out non-progressive material as well.
I saw an album by a band called Area, but it did not seem like it was
from the Italian fusion band ... ?
There are two Areas, the one you saw is probably the US band. The
Italian band is the progressive one. Keep in mind that there are a
handful of bands that have "namesakes". Here is a list:
(1) Canterbury style band from Japan
(2) Gothic band from Italy
(1) Australian neo-progressive band
(2) US metal band
(1) Italian progressive fusion band
(2) US trio
(1) UK group with Steve Howe and John Wetton
(2) Late 70s Midwest USA progressive band
(1) The Current neo-progressive band from the US
(2) The Defunct progressive band on Syn-Phonic
(3) A doom metal band from the UK
(1) Italian progressive band
(2) Mexican progressive band
(3) Dark (gothic?) Ambient/Dance ??
Deus ex Machina
(1) Recent Italian progressive band
(2) Mexican "cyberpunk" band.
(1) Hard-rock psychedelic band from LA circa 1971
(2) Swiss progressive band circa 1978
(3) UK band that put out *Almost Abandoned*
(1) Austrian synthesist/guitarist
(2) Psychedelic band from early 70's
(1) The one everyone knows
(2) some satanic band??
(3) Argentian prog band??
(1) Mexican prog
(2) Avant-garde /industrial band (no 'a' in the name)
(1) British neo-progressive band
(2) German hip-hop
Arthur Brown's Kingdom Come
Avant-weird-psych-prog band from early seventies.
Victor Periano's Kingdom Come
US spinoff of the above, more like keyboard-oriented stadium rock.
Late eighties Zeppelin influenced metal band.
(1) French Zeuhl band
(2) Argentian prog band
(1) Old British band with progressive tendencies
(2) The popular US band
(1) From Belgium
(2) From US
(1) German mid-'70s prog
(2) British psych/prog band from 1969.
(3) US psych/blues band, one album from 1969
(1) British neo-progressive
(2) something else, put out an album named *The Beauty of Escaping*
on Geffen in 1990
(1) Early Canterbury progressive band
(2) Mainstream US band??
Are there any progressive rock radio shows?
A few. Descriptions are not by the FAQ maintainer.
New Orleans Metro Area
WTUL 91.5 FM
Music Played: Any rock recorded 1985 or prior. Most shows feature
at least some progressive rock and often are entirely prog and
fusion. Occasionally, the show focuses on psychedelia and
A Web radio station ... you can download the shows and listen to
them using RealAudio Player. See bottom of FAQ 5.
Key West, Florida
43553 Ellsworth St. Suite B, Fremont, CA 94539
Every Monday evening 9PM - Midnight
General progressive rock, from the early seventies on up.
WOZN 98.7 FM Key West, Florida Sunday Evening
10PM-Midnight WPLT 93.9 FM Plattsburgh, New York Sunday
Evening around 8PM-10 WOUI 88.9 FM Chicago, Illinois
Wednesday Evening 6PM-8PM
Playlists for the previous week are posted each week on r.m.p.
Bryan/College Station, Texas (A and M University)
Limited. It's a cable station, which means that if you get cable in
the area, you can hook up the cable (through a transformer) to a
stereo system, like an antenna. Odds are, only people who live in
B/CS, or use our cable system, will be able to get it. :(
KANM, Cable Radio 99.9 FM.
Pretty much anything Progressive. I'm playing quite a bit of stuff
from the "new prog" bands, like Magellan, Shadow Gallery, Echolyn,
etc. However, I also play Genesis, Marillion, IQ, Animator, Big
Picture, Mind Gallery, Magma, Steve Hackett, ELP, Camel, Soft
Machine, etc. I'm planning on getting Deus Ex Machina soon, along
with nglagrd. Anything that's really good, and gets plugged on
r.m.p, I'll probably wind up getting (eventually).
The Sheltering Sky
WBGU, 88.1 FM
Bowling Green, OH
Wednesdays from 7pm to 9pm
Broad. Anything I can get my hands on. Classic groups (Yes, ELP,
Marillion, Kansas, Crimson, Rush, Tull, Gentle Giant, etc...) as
well as newer or lesser known groups (Ozric Tentacles, Iluvatar,
Witsend). My collection is modest, but growing.
WCWM Williamsburg, VA 90.7 FM
I often play King Crimson, Brian Eno, Frank Zappa, Wire, Pink
Floyd, Genesis, Discipline, David Sylvian, etc. and a lot more
obscure stuff. I tend to like wierd instrumentals a lot and
probably play a lot of things people might not consider progressive
(but I do, so I play it. Ha!). See Web page for setlists etc.
Were there not US releases of some Italian progressive albums with
the same music but lyrics in English?
Yes, there were several. Most notably, PFM released *Storia d'un
Minuto*, *Per Un Amico*, and *L'Isola di Niente* in Italian.
Manticore (I think this was Peter Sinfield's label...he did write the
lyrics for the English verison but I have also heard ELP started it)
released *Photos of Ghosts* and *The World Became the World* with
remixed instrumentation and English vocals and titles. These
partially cover the three Italian albums. *Photos of Ghosts* is
basically all of *Per Un Amico*, plus `Generale!' which is from
*Storia d'un Minuto*. *The World Became the World* is *L'Isola di
Niente* plus the title track, from *Storia d'un Minuto*. Both of the
English versions are poor pressings, and in general, people agree
that the original Italian versions are far superior, both technically
Other bands to do the same are RDM (*Contamination* is the English
version of *Contaminazione*) and Maxophone (English version has the
Which Focus album(s) contain "Sugar Island" and "House of the King"?
Although "House of the King" was originally released on *Focus III*,
it's now available on the CD release of , *In and Out of Focus*.
"Sugar Island" is also available on *IaOoF*.
What is the Mellotron and how does it work? What are related
From afcp...@aol.com (Peter Stoller): The Mellotron is a keyboard
instrument in which the sounds are produced by strips of prerecorded
analog tape dragged slowly over playback heads. Think of it as a
mechanical, analog sample-playback device. Tape `patches' were
usually of strings, choirs, flutes and such. The Beatles were
probably the first to use them, but the Mellotron was popularized by
King Crimson, the Moody Blues and Genesis. (Wakeman used them with
Yes, but they were rarely dominant. Emerson never used one.) Songs
such as Crimson's "In the Court of the Crimson King" and Genesis'
"Watcher of the Skies" are good examples of the Mellotron sound.
The Chamberlin was a similar instrument from a different
manufacturer, and Wakeman had someone build him an improved version
of the Mellotron called the Birotron. Patrick Moraz played a Vako
Orchestron, which was the same principal, but using the playback
technology employed in film projectors, rather than tape.
From rog...@std.teradyne.com (David Rogoff): For each key there is a
5' length of tape (= 8sec @ 7.5''/sec). One end rests on a capstan
(rotating metal cylinder that runs the width of the whole keyboard.
On each key is a pinch roller. When you press the key down, the tape
is pressed against the capstan and starts moving. This is exactly the
same as in a cassette deck. Also under the tape (again one for each
key) is a tape playback head. So, the tape is pulled across the head,
generating the sound. If you hold the key for more than 8 seconds the
sound (and the tape) just stops. When you let go of the key, a spring
pulls the tape back. This takes about a 1/8 second, so you can't play
64th note trills on the thing. In fact, you never want to hit the
keys: you sort of push them down. The action takes some getting used
Also, Each tape is 3/8" wide made up of 3 1/8" tracks for 3 different
sounds. A big lever moved the whole tape head assembly from side to
side to chose the different sounds. If you have access to a 1/2" four
track reel-to-reel you can make your own tapes pretty easily. It just
takes a long time! I've been describing the Mellotron-400, the most
common and most "portable" model.
Eddie Jobson is credited on the King Crimson album USA. Was he ever
in the band?
No, Jobson was not a member of Crimson, but he did get called in to
do overdubs on *USA*. Apparently Fripp had fired Cross by that point
and needed someone to do the overdubs. The majority of what you hear
on the album is Cross. Jobson did not perform the material live.
I do a lot of tape trading in order to find out about more obscure
(non-bootleg) progressive music. Is this legal?
Note that this response only applies to US copyright law. As of this
writing there has not been a specific legal precedent set. In other
words, a case has not been brought before a court involving taping of
non-bootleg material. The current status of the law regarding home
taping is best summed up by Terry Carroll's Copyright FAQ at:
Suppose I tape an album or a CD for a friend anyway. Is this helping
or hurting the artist of the work?
It depends who you tape it for. If you are taping it for somone who
will buy the original if they like it, then it is basically free
advertising and can only help the artist. The other person would not
have bought it anyway if they had not heard it. However, if you are
taping it for people who will just keep the copy even if they love
it, you are hurting them. It is not a clear cut help/hurt ... it
depends on the idiosyncracies of the people involved. Seeing as prog
is a minority area where artists need support (and generally deserve
it), I personally make it a policy to buy every album I hear and like
on an original format. Consider it an act of tribute. I have even
baought back catalogue material when I have tape copies that I rarely
listen to. I consider it an honour to own good music on an original
format, you may be different. Use your own discretion but be aware
that what you choose to do may well be illegal and this FAQ is
certainly not suggesting any such behaviour. Tape trading in minority
What does RIO stand for?
From afcp...@aol.com (Peter Stoller): Rock In Opposition. It was
an assemblage of European progressive bands who were defining a
style "in opposition" to the English language domination of the pop
music industry. Key elements were that groups sang in their native
languages (or, in Magma's case, created their own), and they drew
much of their source material from their own national folk, popular
and classical musics, instead of using the American blues-based
RIO started as the name of a festival in London organised by Henry
Cow in 1978 and featuring groups from Italy, Sweden, France and
Belgium. After the concert, they decided to formalize the coalition.
They organized tours and festivals in each others countries.
According to Henry Cow drummer/lyricist Chris Cutler, RIO as an
organization failed due to political and philosophical differences:
there is no longer an official RIO, and has not been for some time
but it succeeded and has continued to grow as a cultural phenomenon.
The original RIO artists were Henry Cow, Samla Mammas Manna, Univers
Zero, Art Zoyd, Stormy Six, Art Bears, Aqsak Maboul, and Etron Fou
Leloublan. Associated artists include Magma, Albert Marcoeur, ZNR,
Feliu y Joan Albert, Musica Urbana, Goebbels & Harth,
Kraldjursanstalten, Unrest, Work & Play, The Residents, Faust, L.
Voag, Mnemonists, This Heat, Cassiber, Thinking Plague, Haniwa Chan,
and John Oswald. (There are, of course, many others.) This
information was derived from Cutler's book, "File Under Popular" (see
From Mike Borella (mbor...@cs.depaul.edu): The term RIO is now used
as a way of describing some of the more indescribable musics created
today by artists that are influenced to some degree by the original
RIO artists. The "new" RIO influenced bands would include U Totem,
Thinking Plaugue, 5UU's, Lacrymosa, and maybe Banda Elastika. So when
someone says that a new band sound like RIO, you know that maybe be
influenced by RIO or are just weird/elcectic or just strange.
See Phil Zampino's (zam...@squidco.com) Web site dedicated to RIO
artists and labels at:
How many versions of Gentle Giant's
have been on CD, and what are the differences?
From bar...@cs.umass.edu (Daniel Barrett): There have been 4
versions on CD: two from One Way Records in the USA, and two from
Terrapin Trucking, a.k.a. Road Goes On Forever (RGOF), in Great
Britain. Summary: there are large differences between the first
three versions, and the Terrapin/RGOF versions are acknowledged by
fans to be the best.
Now for the longer answer. The first CD came from One Way Records,
number CDL 57338. This disc was mastered from inferior American
master tapes and sounds very muffled. If you turn up your treble
control, the disc sounds almost normal, but overall the sound is
In response to complaints from fans, One Way recalled all the old
CD's from stores, sought out better master tapes, and rereleased
*Free Hand* with the SAME identification number, CDL 57338. It is
not possible to distinguish between the first and second *Free Hand*
CD's from the packaging. The only way to tell by eye is to open the
package and examine the code number stamped on the disc rim. The old
disc says "AM6/CDL 57338", and the new disc says "ESK 1 <010> CDL
The second One Way disc has much better sound. The master tape that
One Way used, however, is a very strange one. It is not the same
tape that was used for any previous release of the album, and the
music is actually different from the original! In "Time To Kill",
Derek Schulman sings some of the lines instead of Ray Schulman; for
example, `And with no questions then, he finds his way'. In "On
Reflection", the drums come in half a verse earlier than in the
original. And worst of all, at the climax of "On Reflection", when
the full band comes crashing in, the drums are barely audible! This
CD is worth owning because it is different from any previous release,
but it is notrepresentative version of the album.
Next, Terrapin/RGOF released their first *Free Hand* disc,
identification number RGF CD 1004. It uses the correct master tapes
and has very good sound quality. I find it a little bit bass-heavy,
but it is much better than the other versions. Some fans complained
that the disc had too much hiss, and Terrapin/RGOF remastered it to
remove hiss, giving the disc a new identification number, TRUCKCD
004. Reportedly, the differences between the two Terrapin/RGOF discs
are minor. If you own only 1 *Free Hand* CD, get this one.
The following people have contributed to making this file what it
Malcolm Humes (m...@emf.net)
Jim Harkins (jhar...@netcom.com)
Scott Sloka (jss...@monet.uwaterloo.ca)
Mike Thaxton (mrth...@miavx1.acs.muohio.edu)
Steve Pacenka (sp...@cornell.edu)
Anthony Alumkal (aalu...@phoenix.princeton.edu)
Gary Mosier (gary....@gsfc.nasa.gov)
Scott Anderson (sand...@gacvx2.gac.edu)
Clint Hyde (ch...@bbn.com)
Etienne C. Rios (V584...@ubvms.cc.buffalo.edu)
Ken Lang (kal...@cbnewsk.cb.att.com)
Hobie Orris (ho...@io.org)
Phil Zampino (zam...@panix.com)
Alex DeWolf (a.de...@tel.gte.com)
Mike borella (mbor...@cs.depaul.edu)
Phil Kime (Phil...@ed.ac.uk)
As of January 29th 1996, the entries have been anonymised as in FAQ
2to avoid any legal problems that may occur since these FAQs are now
registered with the news.* hierachy. The entries are collated from
the comments of many people who have provided information on shops
all over the world. The FAQ maintainer is not responsible for mode of
expression or content in any of the comments below.
Stores In The USA That Carry Progressive Music
6560 Central Avenue, St. Petersburg, Florida
Monday - Saturday, 10 AM - 8 PM; Sunday, 12 - 5 PM
Huge store specializing in imports and independent labels. Although
they are not a specialized prog store, by the nature of the labels
they carry they stock *a lot* of progressive titles. Their prices
are very reasonable (lower than big chain stores). They sell only
CDs and have a large used CD section where you can get used imports
for ~ $12.00 and used US releases for ~ $8.00. I always walk out
happy when I go there. I do a lot of traveling, and so far this is
my favorite store!
Al's Records and CDs "Selling Music by the Pound"
6713 Comstock, Whittier, CA 90601
As above; you have to call Al so he can activate the fax
Al has been involved with ProgFest for the last two years. He
knows quite a bit about progressive rock bands from the '70s and
'80s, as well as new up and coming bands. For example, this year
he helped Landberk, White Willow (who visited the store), Ars Nova,
and other ProgFest acts. If his store doesn't carry something, he
can usually get his hands on it. (Keiko, the keyboard player for
Ars Nova, has him out hunting for Goblin's first with a gatefold
cover...) Among the memorabilia are autographed photographs, ticket
stubs, album covers and posters.
2455 Telegraph Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704
(open 7 days a week)
Amoeba is located in the heart of the legendary Telegraph Ave.
section of South Berkeley. While you may find parking to be
difficult in this area, there are three stores within two blocks that
are worth visiting (see Rasputins and Leopold's below). Amoeba is on
the corner of Telegraph and Haste, across from Cody's Books.
The store is quite large, and boasts a section about 2/3 or the way
towards the back called `Unusual and Experimental' which tends to
include some prog, mostly RIO styled stuff, like The Muffins, Univers
Zero, Art Zoyd, Art Bears, Samla, U Totem and Cassiber. Occasionally
a somewhat less experimental or straight out fusion band will be
included in this section, like Bi Kyo Ran, Ain Soph, or Iconoclasta.
Most of the store is organized alphabetically in two different
sections; one for used CDs, the other for new. You'll find
progressive material interspersed in both of these sections.
Canterbury and most common fusion artists are well represented, as
well as the more mainstream prog bands. You'll find small sections
for the common Italian bands (PFM, Le Orme, Banco), and in some very
rare occasions you'll find an extremely hard to find disc (Los
Canarios is the rarest I've found). Very little neo-prog is
represented. The used CD section is huge, and does have prog, but I
rarely find anything exciting there
The sales staff don't seem to be very helpful in terms of prog, and
the best method to use when looking for prog in Amoeba seems to be
exhaustive search. Prices tend to be high (sometimes close to $30 for
an import). This applies to the used section as well, as I've seen
used imports go for $15.
2350 Telegraph Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704
(open 7 days a week)
Two blocks north of Amoeba is Rasputin's, located on the corner of
Telegraph and Durant. The store consists of two levels, with a
progressive rock section on the first, and a very small "Euro-prog"
LP section on the second. The progressive section has 100-200 CDs,
most of them domestic or British import. The Canterbury and RIO bands
are well represented, as well as many "fringe" artists. Most
noteable is that Yes, Genesis, and Marillion are in the regular rock
section, while ELP, King Crimson and Gentle Giant made the prog
section. Occasionally you'll find a rare Italian disc (Il Balleto di
Bronzo, Ossana, Semiramis) as well rare French and German material
(Atoll, Ashra, Agne).
In general, the prices are slightly lower than Amoeba, but I've seen
some ridiculously high prices for particular British imports. The
used CD section has a ton of mainstream prog, so if you're looking to
fill out your collection with the basics, try there.
Upstairs in the LP section about 10-20 prog albums can be found,
mostly used. Even mint condition LPs tend to be underpriced (for
example I found an Iceberg LP for $10 - market price is $40-$50).
Usually there isn't much in this section, but once in a while you'll
find a gem. Also upstairs is the jazz section, which contain quite a
bit of fusion. The prices are very reasonable; sometimes a new CD
will go for $9-$10.
Since there is a progressive rock section, someone working at the
store must know about prog, but I have no idea who that person is.
2518 Durant Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94704
Half a block east on Durant is Leopold's, the final stop for prog
in Berkeley. Actually, there's very little prog in the store, just
a few discs by Pinhas, Djam Karet, and some RIO in the import
section. However, Leopold's has an exhaustive jazz/fusion section,
including virtually everything by Ponty, Mahavishnu as well as many
others. Prices are about average.
3413 El Camino Avenue, Sacramento
(generally closes around 6pm)
Near the corner of El Camino and Watt, Esoteric sports a small prog
section of both LPs and CDs. Some of the CDs are rare and
otherwise hard to find, and prices tend to be reasonable. The LP
section rarely contains anything rare. Two employees, Brian and
Jim, are local progressive experts and will be able to recommend
many artists for you. The store has a CD player hooked up for
listening, so you can check them out before buying. Esoteric will
special order, I believe.
Off The Record
El Cajon, CA & Hillcrest CA (suburbs of San Diego)
Directions -- Hillcrest - 163 South to Washington. Right on
University (first light). You want to hang a left at the first light
but it's a one way street going the other way. They're half a block
on your left, park where you can. The directions from 15 north are
much different, you're better off going too far, turning around,
taking 15 South, then following my directions :-) El Cajon -
Interstate 8 to Mollison, go North. About 1 mile down Mollison
intersects Broadway at a light. At the northeast corner is a gas
station, it's next to that. Look for the 60's psycadelic paint job.
Mainly used CD stores with some new CDs. They don't seem to bother
with the top 40 crap, but if you want Ozrics these are the places to
go. I've found the most stuff I wanted in the Hillcrest Off the
Record. I've bought Hawkwind, Ozrics, and Iconoclasta at the
Hillcrest OtR. None of these stores carry prog so much as
`alternative' music, alternative meaning "you'll never hear this on
the radio!". Both stores special order. New CDs are list price, used
are $8.99. I seldom walk out of the Hillcrest OtR empty-handed. I
seldom walk out of the El Cajon OtR with a purchase.
Encinitas CA (suburb of San Diego)
Mainly used CD store with some new CDs. Bigger than both Off the
Record stores, mentioned above. New CDs are list price, used are
$8.99. I've been to Lou's twice, their discs weren't in alphabetical
order and I didn't feel like going through all their stuff. But they
do have a good rep around town as a good place to find stuff.
Its used CDs are now all in alphabetical order now. They have a Jazz
section (`New Age' like), hardcore (with Fates Warning, but mostly
satanic stuff), and pop/rock which has your Yes, Rush, etc. Anyway,
they have a great selection of bootlegs for sale ($25 single mainly),
and tons of used records + tapes (a $3.99 area, and a $.19-$1.00
section for the not so good stuff) as well.
Life By Design
129 N. Wahsatch, Colorado Springs, CO, 80903
Noon - 8PM daily. Closed Wednesdays.
This is an outstanding source for progressive rock, as well as
anything else that is hard to find. They have a huge selection of
music from around the world. It's just a small purple house which
can get crowded, but only the CD booklets are on display so there
is a bunch of music in a small space. They claim to have 15,000
titles in stock, and don't waste a lot of space on mainstream stuff
you can get anywhere. They have sections for experimental,
psychedelic, acid jazz, industrial, ska, ambient, techno, punk,
hardcore, alternative, atmospheric, doom, guitar greats, new age,
lots of ethnic music, and of course progressive. In addition to
progressive rock, I'm into progressive metal and they always have a
good selection. I gave them a copy of the progressive metal list
from Internet, and they are trying to order all the disks listed
that they didn't already have. In addition to CD's, they carry
videos, magazines, books, cards, jewelry, incense, and T-shirts.
Their domestic CD prices are average ($11.97-$14.
Twist & Shout
724 South Pearl Street, Denver, Colorado
Hours are 11-7 Monday-Friday, 10-6 Saturday, and 12-5 Sunday. This
shop is an independent store with a deep catalogue. Progressive
music is definitely available, but does not form the majority of
their catalogue. They are more of a full-service store. However,
the accent is most definitely on the hard-to-find, eclectic, or
otherwise noteworthy CD as opposed to a main line offering. They
have a newsletter. The current issue of the newsletter states in
part that "Twist & Shout has had its best year-to-date since we
began seven years ago. We credit this to the quality of the
shopping experience our customers have when they come to our store;
atmosphere, listening stations, trade-in service, used CD's at
$7.99, in-store play, newsletter, top-25 list, deep catalogue,
special-order service and our extremely knowledgeable and helpful
employees-all these make the visit itself here as satisfying as the
music one finds." Apparently you can order over the phone or
4 1/2 South Linn St. Iowa City, Iowa 52240
Operated by Kirk. Don't know Kirk's last name, although I have
done business with him for years. There are all sorts of Can and
Neu CDs on the wall, and I have seen It's a Beautiful Day, and
other hard to find stuff there as well. Kirk takes trades, has
used vinyl and CDs, gets a lot of alternative traffic, but likes
prog (esp. Krautrock and old experimental stuff like Faust) and old
Ravi Shankar LPs (!) a lot. Prices always seemed pretty good, but
can't count on him for special orders really. Used CDs go for
$7-$11 depending on rarity, if imports, then slightly more. Vinyl
prices are all over, based on rarity, condition and so forth.
43rd and Nicollet, Minneapolis
They have a separate prog section (which I must admit impressed
me). They carry Can, Camel, Beefheart, Gentle Giant, Egg, Art
Bears, Faust, The Muffins, Dr. Nerve, Art Zoyd, Univers Zero,
Matching Mole, Soft Machine, etc. etc. They have lots of imports at
very reasonable prices (usually $14-17). They're open 10-6 Monday
through Saturday and 12-5 on Sunday. Most employees seem at least
moderately interested in prog. Usually, anything I buy there
receives a knowledgeable comment from the cashier. I believe
they'll special order, too.
2938 Biddle Avenue, Wyandotte, MI 48192
This storefront is run by The Music Broker Ltd., which, I
understand, has exclusive U.S. distribution rights on Ozric
Tentacles. They specialize in imports of all genres, but their
catalog has a great selection of prog and psych titles. Looking
over the list, I see CDs by Amon Dl, Arrakeen, Asgard, Atoll,
Banco, Cathedral, Edhels, Eloy, Goblin...you get the idea. Their
prices are a little on the high side ($18.95 to $21.95 for most
imports), but they occasionally have an `all imports for $11.95'
sale, which I'm anxiously awaiting since I've seen their catalog :)
They also do mail order.
Carries 70's Prog, Neo-prog, Jazz, Fusion, Space, Electronic, World
Music, Industrial, Classical, some new-agey stuff - and that's all.
No pop, rock, country, metal, alternative, etc. Extensive breadth of
progressive material, and good depth for the big names (Camel,
Caravan, Soft Machine, Gentle Giant, Ozrics, etc.) They do special
order and mail order sales. Chris Lamka is the owner and sole
propriator and is extremely knowledgeable about prog. Domestics run
about $14-15, imports generally in the $18-22 range, used stuff is
generally $8-10 for CD's but vinyl varies all over the place
depending on quality and rarity. Trades are generally welcome. Some
cassettes and videos are also available, as are other things like
sketches and paintings. An antique center in the same mill complex
has a web page with a map and directions to the center at:
Excellent place to get imports - Italian, Scandanavian, French.
Well-stocked in the Canterbury classics. Lots of small, indy labels
and obscure domestic stuff. This is a store dedicated to the
Of Sound Mind was known as Playing By Ear before Chris bought it a
few years ago.
Multiple shops - see their Web page.
The shop in Cambridge, Boston is excellent. Much outr material
including RR and industrial/experimental. There is a free local
paper you can find on the streets in the area that contains coupons
for the store which entitles you to $3 off any disc over, I think,
$12.99. See their Web page for more details. Thay have on-line
ordering on their web page. Recommended.
Route #1 and Ford Avenue, Fords
1637 Route 35, Ocean
Probably 11am - 9pm on weekdays and Saturday, shorter Sunday.
Dedicated progressive section. Heavy on imports - much Italian,
British, German; some Musea. A couple of hundred CDs. Mass-market
stuff like Yes, Genesis, Tangerine Dream, ELP, etc (thorough coverage
of these) is in the regular section, so this dedicated section is for
the more obscure stuff. For prog-heads who have even more eclectic
tastes, they also have a large metal section (quadruple the size of
the progressive area), an oldie reissues section with lots of 60's
and 70's stuff, and a techno/industrial section. The non-Japanese
imports range from $18 to $24. Their normal prices for domestics are
$2-$3 under what one would pay in the chains. They have a `club' that
lets one accumulate credit toward future purchases. I've been buying
there for several years with zero hassles.
Note, Vintage Vinyl has two locations, Fords and Route 35N Ocean
Twsp. Hours are basically the same, and both stores have a large
selection of prog. The Ocean Twsp. store however has about twice the
square footage and therefore has a lot more stuff.
Compact Disc Center
Route 35 South, Middletown
10-9 M/F, 10-7 Sat, 12-5 Sun
This store has TONS of imports by all types of bands, but carries a
lot of prog. They had almost the entire Magma catalog, lots of
Gong, Renaissance (both lineups), all of the Gryphon CDs, Atomic
Rooster, lots of Hawkwind, etc.
The Trading Post
Route 1 South next to Route 18 Ramp
Open until 9pm weekdays, not sure about weekends
If you go to this store be prepared to spend at least an hour
perusing through their racks. The Trading Post (2nd floor) sells
nothing but used CDs, thousands of them. They buy everything and
sell it at prices ranging from $6 - $10. I have found CDs by
Carmen, Formula 3, Vivian Stanshall, Caravan, Seventh Wave,
Gracious, Dixie Dregs, Material, Robert Musso, etc. plus bands from
all over the world that I have never heard of. Its pretty much pot
luck, but if you like to browse and are interested in checking out
obscure bands this is a good place to start.
Main St., Belmar
A guy who works here loves prog, so he is responsible for putting
some pretty cool stuff in the used rack. I've scored CDs by the
Strawbs, Fairport, Spirogira, Synergy, Gentle Giant, Gong, etc.
They also have some prog imports in the regular racks.
Main St., Belmar
This store sells new & used LPs and CDs. The owner is a big GG and
Renaissance fan, and carries a lot of prog vinyl. He goes to a lot
of CD/LP shows and will look for stuff for you if you ask.
Route 1, Menlo park Mall
Route 18S, East Brunswick
Multiple branches. Carries most of the One Way releases, and the
Code 90 CDs. Just started a used section in which I've scored some
Can, Echolyn, Sakomoto, etc. so they do buy/sell prog. This store
also carries some Popol Vuh which is rare and lots of Hawkwind.
Also, Blue Plate releases.
Church Street, New Brunswick
Mostly an alternative type store, but has some decent prog titles,
i.e. Van Der Graaf Generator, Kevin Ayers, Amon Dl I & II, National
Health. Also has a diverse used section in which I've found
Caravan, Barclay James Harvest. Only store in New Jersey that
carries Mirthrandir! (I just though that was pretty funny).
Princeton Record Exchange
20 S. Tulane St., Princeton, NJ 08542
Mon-Sat 10-8, Sun 12-6
PRE is located half a block north of Nassau Street opposite the
university library. It is a good place to look for progressive rock
in a town which is anything but progressive.
It claims to be one of the largest collectors' stores in the country
and boasts 100,000 lp's, 30,000 CD's and 10,000 tapes. They don't
tend to carry many new prog CD's, though I have seen HTM, Camel,
Carvan, and A. Phillips there, as well the more `mainstream' stuff
like Crimson, Genesis and Floyd. Depending on the day, you can find a
number of used prog CD's as there are apparently a number of local
prog-heads unloading their goods. I've seen Pinhas, Weingarten (!),
Eloy, and GG to name a few. New domestics sell for about $15. Used
CD's sell for $6-$10.
The real story here is the vinyl section. The majority of lp's sell
for an amazing $1.99; few sell for more than $6.99. I've encountered
prog gems by the likes of PFM, Acqua Fragile, McDonald and Giles (!),
Camel, Caravan (lots!), and many others. Also in the vinyl section
are a number of (unalphabetized) $.99 record bins, shoved under the
regular vinyl racks. If you don't mind spending some time on your
knees, you can find LP's by most of the mainstream prog bands.
As with any used shop, the stock will vary considerably from one time
to another. The vinyl section has a fairly quick turn-over rate, so
if you come once and are disappointed, try again in a month or two.
World Wide Music & Video Games
3100 Main Street, Buffalo
Carries a LOT of imports and progressive rock. Lots of Eloy, Camel
and Nektar, among others. Call them if you need any more info.
They also do special orders on domestic and import titles.
Downtown Music Gallery
211 East 5th St., New York
The store caters to the NYC Downtown Music Scene, like the Knitting
Factory, and lots of progressive, Canterbury, experimental,
electronic and jazz releases. The man at the counter, Bruce, is
perhaps the most knowledgeable salesman I've ever met, and
certainly the friendliest. The store is jam full of music, and they
don't frown on vinyl. For records on the Recommended/Rift label,
and lots of European and Japanese prog records this is a good
source. Mail order is no problem either.
2016 Crompond Rd., Yorktown Heights, NY 10598
914 962 6274
Hrs Mon-Sa 11-6. Originally Pantasia Recorz of NYC 1974- 80,
specializing in imported & other rock. Later became Mad Platters of
Yonkers & Carmel NY 1980 - 95. Now renamed again &in Yorktown.
STILL HAVE A GOOD QUANTITY OF VINYL PERTINENT TO THIS GROUP (as
well as 40 different genres & 60,000 LPs total). Not many of the
serious collectibles left, though. Mail for lists. Wants welcome.
Weak on CDs & more current artists.
2213 Elliston Place, Nashville, TN 37203
There is an excellent store in Nashville that prides itself on only
carrying music that the owners personally like. Luckily for us, the
owners (Meigie and Ben Mabry) seem to enjoy prog an awful lot.
I've only been there once, but stayed for about four hours just
listening to stuff and chatting with Meigie about various bands.
They carry lots of Eloy, Caravan, and they have the largest
selection of Tangerine Dream CDs I've ever seen. Really, TDream
fans owe it to themselves to check it out. The only drawback is
that they had very little in the way of obscure stuff. By the way,
the prices are excellent. I picked up an import copy of Ozric's
*Pungent Effulgent* for $13.99.
We have been in business for 14 years. We sell new, used, domestic
and import, CD's, LP's, Cass and Laser Videos. Our specialty is 60's
and 70's rarities, progressive and alternative. We also have a large
selection of Japanese laser discs. We have a 3,200 square ft store on
the corner of Interstate 635 and Oates Drive in Mesquite (a suburb of
Dallas). We ship out daily UPS, and accept all major credit cards.
Randy Frierson is the owner. About the only place in Dallas to get
progressive rock. Randy Frierson's tastes run from punk/alternative
to Krautrock, so these two areas are generally covered well. Also a
pretty good selection of spacey fusion, Ozric Tentacles, Porcupine
Tree, etc. Also a good selection of the big names - Gentle Giant,
Nektar, Caravan, Camel, Marillion, iQ... Occasionally gets hard to
find live recordings.
Vinal Edge Records
13171 Veteran's Memorial Dr., Houston, TX 77014
Mon.-Sat. 11am-9pm, and 12pm-6pm on Sun.
All the progressive stuff is in the Avant Garde/Noise/Experimental
section. Quite a good selection of things. I noticed multiple Area,
Art Zoyd and Nurse With Wound without really trying too hard.
Stores Outside The USA That Carry Progressive Music
Kaakbrinken 16, 11127, Stockholm
+46 8 20 00 12
+46 8 24 42 42
Closest metro station is Gamla Stan. Apparently, the opening hours
are 11:00 -- 18:00. This is the shop run by Stefan Dimle, the
bassist of Landberk, and the director of the (now defunct?)
Mellotronen label (which released, among others, nglagrd's
*Hybris*). Lots of prog, some vinyl, some non-prog. Tell Stefan
that Ron Chrisley sent you ...
Minus Zero Records
2 Blenheim Crescent, London, W11 1NN, UK
0171 299 5424
Hours are Friday and Saturday only, 10 to 6. This shop is
extremely small and crowded, but has a huge selection of
progressive, psychedelic, rock, oldies, eclectic, and generally
hard-to-find CDs. It is mainly concerned with CDs that are
generally not found in main line stores like Tower Records.
Progressive music, both old and new forms a big percentage of their
catalogue. It seems to be run by people that are doing it more out
of a love for the music than as a major money making proposition.
They will do orders over the phone. Mick Dillingham, a rock critic
writing for the Ptolemaic Terrascope, works in the shop.
5/7 Brown Street, Manchester, M2 1DA, UK
+44 (0161) 839 8008
Not actually visited this outlet but I have had things bought for
me from there. Said things were quite obscure and had hand-written
stickers giving details of genre and links to other artists which
impressed. Knowledgeable and well-priced with a good catalogue.
15 High Ousegate, York, YO1 2RZ, UK
+44 (01904) 629022 (4 lines)
+44 (01904) 610637
I have been buying CDs from them since 1989, I have never ever been
disappointed. The store is owned by Keith Howe, but its the
mail-order manager, Alan Beecroft with whom I have mostly dealt with.
What he doesn't know about progressive music isn't worth knowing. He
is extremely helpful, and is very friendly on the phone. They keep a
huge stock of CDs from the 60, 70s and 80s and well as current
titles. They also produce a catalogue from time to time. The last
major one was in two parts totalling 124 pages, and I have recently
received a spring 1995 supplement of 42 pages. Excellent stuff.
Track advertise in the UKs monthly Record Collector magazine. They
accept credit cards, and once on file, just order, a swift check on
your details and the goods are sent. They also sell videos,
cassettes, vinyl and keep a number of specialist magazines
Decidedly average outlet. Reasonable amount of Cantebury related
material and not a great deal else of note. No RIO, zeuhl (one second
hand Magma *Live*) to speak of. Rather conservative.
Stalsberggt 20, 2010 Strommen, Norway
The proprietor is Rune Schau, co-editor of Prognetik Magazine (see
1 Conduit Street, Leicester, LE2 OJN, UK
+44 (0116) 2854545
+44 (0116) 2854555
Excellent mail-order store. Their shop is supposedly good. They
have a very large inventory of indeed and are very knowledegable
about progressive music. Particularly the German and electronic
music. International mail order. Quite expensive though, even for
the UK. They have odd opening hours.
c/o Pelayo, 12 bajo, Valencia, Spain
34-6-3510550 (Spanish only)
Excellent store specializing in prog and psych, both CD and vinyl,
including many rarities. They stock music from all over including
South America and Mexico. It is run by Jose Martin Hernandez, who
is the man behind the Lost Vinyl label (Atila, Itoiz, etc.). He is
very knowledgeable and would play stuff for you to audition. He
also runs a mail order service. His extensive catalog is free for
the asking. Address catalog requests to: Jose Martin Hernandez,
Records and CDs by Mail, Apartado 8347, 46080 Valencia, Spain.
Salud 10, Madrid, Spain
Great little store in the heart of Madrid (Puerta del Sol area).
They stock music from all over the world and, of course, Spain.
They stock quite a bit of prog plus other genres. Very
knowledgeable staff. The store is about equally divided between CDs
and LPs. Large section of used LPs but no used CDs. Spanish
releases are ~ $14.00 and others ~ $20.00. Recently, they have
ventured into releasing CDs under their own label (Discos
Melocoton). My favorite store in Madrid!
Gran Via 25, Madrid, Spain
Madrid Rock is the largest chain of music stores in the Madrid
area. They carry mainly the nuts and bolts CDs that any other chain
store carries. *However*, this particular store in the Gran Via has
a whole aisle dedicated to rock from Spain, including most of the
Spanish prog groups (Bloque, Triana, Mezquita, Eduardo Bort,
Granada, Gotic, etc.) and at a relatively nice price (~ $14.00).
They have the largest selection of Spanish rock CDs I have seen
anywhere in Spain. Also, this is the only store that does not close
for the siesta.
Pan y Musica
C/ Ros de Olano 12, 08012, Barcelona, Spain
The store is located close to Fontana subway station. They have a lot
of progressive stuff, specially neo-progressive (IQ, Pendragon,
Jadis, Cyan, Leviathan, Citizien Cain, Casino, Twelth Night, Violent
District, Arrakeen, Big Picture, Aragon, Pallas, Starcastle,
Clepsydra, Chandelier, etc). They also have a good list of Spanish
and Italian releases (Gotic, Iman, Asfalato, PFM, Banco, Osanna, Le
Orme, Arti+Mestieri, Eris Pluvia, Harnakis, Galadriel, Il Volo,
Metamorfosi, Seminaris, etc), among other countries and differents
styles in the prog. scene (nglagrd, Amon Dl, Atoll, Cathedral, Coda,
Collage, Curved Air, Dice, Dream Theater, Echolyn, Eloy, The Enid,
Greenslade, Henry Cow, Kayak, Machiavel, Nektar, O Terc,o, Popol Vuh,
Sagrado, Tiemko, Triumvirat, etc, etc). They have a smaller
collection of Rock, Jazz and New-Age music. The prices range from
1800 to 3400 pts (about $14-$26). Twice a year they print their
updated catalogue (I have the last one).
The catalogue they produce is stunning. Many albums listed have full
colour reproductions of the covers and it is well typeset.
Records on Wheels
Main St., Dundas, Ontario, Canada
Carries Gentle Giant, UK, Eloy, King Crimson, Ozric Tentacles,
Renaissance, etc. Talk to Mike for special orders. Prices are
Rock en stock
1238 Crescent, Montreal, Qubec, Canada, H3G-2A9
They have a good stock in new prog stuff and also in the classic
1477 Mont-Royal east, Montreal, Qubec, Canada
Open during normal business hours, 6 days a week.
The only new CDs they sell are progressive rock. The rest of CDs
and LPs are second hand. They have a wide selection of progrock
CDs, including Ter reno Baldio, Minimum Vital, Isildurs Bane,
Ozrics, Banco, P.F.M., etc.. and of course the big names like
Gentle Giant, Peter Hammill, ELP, Tangerine Dream, Genesis, etc...
Le Free-Son has three CD players in store, one of them being a
100-disc carousel and two of them are dedicated to the customers.
There are chairs at the back and people are welcome to leisurely
hear the discs before buying, using headphones. The staff are very
47, cours de la Marne, 33000 BORDEAUX, France
56 94 51 63
56 92 59 85
Free listing. CDs from all over the world.
shinjuku-ku, nishi-shinjuku 7-5-6, shinjuku-daikan-plaza 756, 2nd
floor, Tokyo, Japan
Import & Japanese, expensive.
shinjuku-ku, nishi-shinjuku 7-15-14, Tokyo, Japan
Disk Union (shinjuku shop)
Near big department store `Marui' Fashion Building
Disk Union has more than 10 shops in/near Tokyo, but the shinjuku
shop has the best collection of prog CDs (new & used). Reasonable
shinjuku-ku, nishi-shinjuku 7-4-9 & 7-4-5 Tokyo, Japan
03-3365-0910 & 03-5330-9141 respectively
There are two shops. Collector's vinyl.
shinjuku-ku, nishi-shinjuku 7-1-7, Daikan-plaza A-1019, Tokyo,
The following people have contributed to making this file what it
Ruud van de Kruisweg (krui...@flatearth.xs4all.nl)
A List Of Mailorder Sources Of Progressive Music
"Independent distribution is virtually dead. ...Most American stores
get nearly all their wares from six suppliers." (CBS, Warner, BMG,
Capitol-EMI, Polygram, and MCA.)
-from "Hit Men" by Frederic Dannen, Vintage Books 1991 (ISBN
Despite the major labels dominating the music industry and
distribution, artists are still releasing their own product and some
small labels are dedicated to releasing new music and reissuing old
releases once considered rare, out of print and lost forever. Small
distributors are still around filling a need, helping us find those
releases that nobody else seems to carry. Even in large metropolitan
areas in this age it can be difficult to find a retail music outlet
that stocks even a small selection of progressive music. The same is
essentially true of mail order vendors. It is too difficult and
expensive for a small business to maintain a large inventory on hand.
Both retail and mail order vendors tend to have special areas of
interest, typically heavily influenced by the interests of the
employee(s) ordering the stock. With many small one-person businesses
in music mail order, the focus of musical interest is often somewhat
narrow and consequently it is hard to find any one mail order source
Many of the vendors are small operations running out of people's
homes or on a modest budget. Please be considerate when calling
numbers with preferred calling hours listed as the owner might not
enjoy answering your calls during meals or while abed. It is probably
a good idea to send a SASE (Self-Addressed- Stamped-Envelope) or an
IRC (International Reply Coupon from the Post Office) if writing
overseas. It may not be necessary but I consider it a gesture of
goodwill and it can make the difference in whether you get a reply or
not. Catalog costs listed here may be inaccurate, or a catalog may
have a fee associated that is not noted here. No guarantee is made
for the accuracy of addresses, pricing or opinions listed herein.
Please help keep this up to date by informing of any changes or
Please note that comments below are not attributable and are
certainly not the product of the FAQ maintainer in the main. They
have been collated from the comments of many, many people and largely
inserted verbatim. The FAQ maintainer accepts no responsibility for
either mode of expression or content in any entry. It is appropriate
to warn others if you have been seriously or repeatedly mistreated by
anyone listed here and to that end, there has been no attempt to
disguise fairly expressed negative comments.
As of early May, 1994, all author names have been removed from their
respective contributions. This was done mainly because it was
requested and since this file appears in the Gibraltar Encyclopedia
of Progressive Rock, negative comments may be construed as libel
(though they are meant to be constructive criticism).
Availability Of Other Mail Order Listings
There have been a few other music (CD/LP) mailorder lists compiled on
the net - one that used to be posted to rec.music.misc regularly has
been dormant (not maintained or updated) since May 1992 but can be
The current version has been unchanged since May 1992 and contains
some out of date addresses but is still a huge list of resources. The
updated version the file can be obtained as
The revision borrows liberally from this listing but managed to keep
some outdated addresses - in cases of conflicting addresses the one
found in the list you are currently reading is probably correct.
Yet another mailorder list called INFOCD is maintained by
MI...@perch.nosc.mil. This can be found at
There are some additional lists in that directory of possible
interest, for example the file
which is a list of sources in the USA of, um, hard to find rarities.
Vendors in the USA
Request a catalog if nothing else. They've got a great selection of
European and Japanese imports, some domestic stuff too. One of the
priciest places I've dealt with, especially for shipping! But a good
selection nonetheless. Import CDs only. Full length CDs only, no CD
singles. They keep everything in stock, so there is a very quick
turnaround for your orders. They're a little stingy about sending
catalogs, though, so be persistent.
I have found them to be very helpful. Turnaround time is fast. They
didn't seem stingy with the catalog when I requested one, although
they did mention that an update was forthcoming, and I might want to
wait. I can't comment about the prices as the CD I was looking for is
known to be expensive (in the $30 range!)
P.O. Box 421544, Los Angeles, CA 90042
Run by Francisco Morales. The catalog is extensive, mostly of used
LPs and new CDs, a mixture of set sale and auction items (mostly
set sale). A lot of rarities and obscurities.
18633 Topham St., Reseda, CA 91335
Not sure if they're still in business. They used to carry a decent
selection of electronic/new age stuff.
Art Control Enterprises
10301 Lake Ave. #825, Cleveland, OH 44102
Run by Steven F. Del Nero. A set sale and auction list of used but
near mint CDs and LPs. Steven mails out this catalog about once a
year or so of used items. The first part is an auction and the second
part is remaining items from previous auctions. His list is fairly
large and diverse, including obscure progressive, improv and
industrial music but pricing is close to what I can find the items
for new if I can find them (but I do live in an area with good music
stores). Quality of most items is supposed to be near mint. Worth
A recent flyer from ART CONTROL said it's turning into a full-time
business and will be expanding to stock more new items in the future.
Probably with more frequent catalogs
P.O. BOX 4801, Lutherville, MD 21094-4801
Lots of fusion from around the world. Good prog selection, however
not as extensive as another Baltimore location, which is Of Sound
Mind. Catalog has a nice thumbnail blurb on each of the CD's
offered (some are just personel listings, but it's better than
418 Tamal Plaza, Corte Madera, CA 94925
Extensive catalog of mostly new age/emusic. A bit pricey and they
don't stock vinyl. They also have available radio station lists for
Echoes, Hearts of Space Radio and Musical Starstreams. They come
out with regular updates/new release notes. They can take special
requests and have access to some imports from Europe.
R.D.2, Box 294, Camden, DE 19934
His catalog of "progressive, psychedelic, electronic, folk-rock to
hard-rock collectable LPs & CDs" is $1 ($2 overseas)
3445 W. 132 St., Cleveland, OH 44111
216 671 8305
216 671 8305
Progressive rock and psych from around the world. Strong emphasis
on Italian prog. All manner of goodies from Delerium, Vinyl Magic,
Mellow, Germanofon, etal. Email for catalog, updated monthly, or
for inclusion on mailing list. Want lists, suggestions welcome!
Barking Pumpkin Records/Barfko Swill?
This is Frank Zappa's mailorder business for Zappa and the Mother
of Invention releases and products such as posters, tshirts, etc.
The line usually has an informational recording during non business
hours, and I think they also answer general questions about Zappa
and take orders during regular business hours - probably 9am- 5pm
Cadence Bldg, Redwood, NY 13679
Extensive jazz/folk catalog which you must subscribe to. Also have
some avante-garde and fusion releases.
CRI - Composers Recordings Incorporated
73 Spring St. Suite 506, New York, NY 10012-5800
List over one hundred artists in their 1992 catalog. Mostly
Neo-classical/avante garde. Lou Harrison, John Zorn, Milton
Babbit, Harry Partch, Otto Leuning, Guy Klucesvek, etc...
Calendula Records / Mt.Olympus Imports
Rick Haney, c/o 6207 22nd Ave, Seattle, WA 98115
Now here's a guy who I had a real bad mail order experience with. I
sent him money for both of the HAPPY THE MAN CD's (Japanese
Pressings), which he had listed in his catalog. Six months later I
got one of them, and a refund for the other. This was after about 40
long distance phone calls to his answering machine he never once
returned a call, and it turns out that at the time he put his catalog
out, he didn't have the discs in stock, in fact hadn't even ordered
them yet. His idea was to take a bunch of orders THEN order them
after he had enough to guarantee a healthy profit for himself.
I had a bad experience with a record store in Seattle that was either
called Mount Olympus or that was the title of a mailorder catalog I
later got associated with that store. I went to a store in Seattle
and found an amazing stock of new and used progressive rock there. I
bought a bunch of stuff and after I left town I called to arrange
another order which a friend was to pick up for me. Many of the LPs
they had were priced at high collectors prices, and I specifically
asked them for a handful of releases, and I asked them to pull any 2
of about 6 releases they had by Embryo. The friend got there and
found the order totaled $185 instead of the $70 I'd told him it would
be, and he thought something was fishy and didn't take the order. A
month or two later I found the store billed my VISA card anyway, and
they still had the records "held" for me because they didn't have my
shipping address. Turns out they'd pulled they entire Embryo section
priced at $25 each thinking I'd wanted them all. I resolved it and w
1016 East El Camino, #322 Sunnyvale, CA 94087
(408) 730-9015 Up to 9600 bps (8 data, 0 parity, 1 stop), San
Francisco/Berkeley (510) 843-1259, Chicago (312) 751-2447, New York
City (212) 532-4045
58,000+ Cds listed on-line, accepts VISA, MasterCard, $3 per regular
order; free shipping on orders of $100 within 48 US states,
Phonolog(tm)-Select - industry standard song/track title database.
Downloadable catalogs so you can search offline, and available via
mail for $5 (deductible from next/first order). The Golden Ears
Society - music critics. Ships to Canada, Overseas shipping info
available. Claims 94% average ability to deliver - 90 -100% of orders
filled. Delivery of orders requires approximately 1 work week +
shipping time (1-2.5 weeks depending on location. A separate account
must be established on each system (city) you will be using if you
call more than one location of this company to place orders.
If you're on the internet, you can telnet to cdconnection.com and get
a full, online database search of their stuff plus the facilities to
order by credit card. I found CD CONENCTION's prices not too bad but
their overseas shipping charges are outrageous.
PO Box 8561, Deerfield Beach, FL 33443
305-481-8984 (Orderline: 9-5 EST 5 weekdays), 305-481-1724
(Customer Service: 9-5 EST weekdays),
305-481-8817 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week)
408-985-2094 Up to 9600 bps (8n1)
Like CD CONNECTION above but specialises in European imports (for
the US). Unlike CD CONNECTION, their overseas shipping rates aren't
too bad but their prices are high. If you are on the internet, you
can telnet to cdeurope.com to access their entire catalogue. You
can also order on-line using credit cards. Very useful but, like CD
CONNECTION, very costly.
Box 652, Ellington CT 06029
(203) 875-2315 3-10PM EST
Cleefo (that's his name) specializes in cutout CDs, Cassettes and
Videos of all types. He used to send out a list, but rarely does
anymore as his stock turns over so quickly. Just this year (92) he
was able to get me two long- out-of-print Synergy CD's and Dixie
Dregs "Dregs of the Earth" CD. It's best to just call and let him
know what you're looking for. I've never had any problems with his
service, he's always been friendly and helpful on the phone, and
has a network of other record-show type dealers that he works with,
which in some cases allows him to get some long-lost obscurities in
record time. (he couldn't find me a copy of Utopia's POV though
!!). Overall very good prices.
155 W. 72nd Street, #704, NY 10023
PO BOX 1129, D-5166 Kreuzau, F.R. GERMANY
CMP is a label with a variety of releases ranging from fusion and
jazz, to world ethnic music, gamelans, etc. Trilok Gurtu, David
Torn, Chad Wackerman, Ed Mann, Allan Holdsworth and Mick Karn are
just some of the players on various CMP releases. I'm not positive
they still do direct mailorder and I know I can find their releases
in stores and through distributors like Ranjit, but it's nice to
look a catalog of their releases to see the full scope of what they
carry. Write for a free catalog. Two offices, one in New York, one
Box 3528, Orange, CA 92665
They handle only a very limited selection of (mostly) Southern Cal.
independent artists: Walter Holland, Djam Karet, Neuronium, Steve
Roach, Mark Dwane, and a handful of others.
PO Box 411, Huntington Station, NY 11746
A small label. Stuff by Heresy(prog), Ernest Woodall (Emusic),
Tony Garone (avant-folk) and others.
Box 3, Little Silver, NJ 07739
A lot like Backroads. With a bit more jazz and instrumental.
Dutch East India Trading
PO BOX 800, Rockville Centre, NY 11571-0800
Carries some Wyatt and Soft Machine BBC releases and probably other
BBC Peel Sessions too. Appears to be licensing the material from
Strange Fruit records. I've heard that they have a mailorder
catalog but I haven't asked for it because I can find the releases
in local stores here already.
1592 Kilkenny St., Boulder, CO 80303-1646
The ear-rational mail address is automated. Send `catalog' as the
subject (not body) for catalog. Send `subscribe' for regular
updates. angst address is for human enquiries. Quite a large
selection of ambient/industrial music.
PO Box 224, Eagle, PA 19480
Distribute the stuff you would hear on the program "Echoes". Mostly
newagey/emusic with some jazz/acoustic.
PO Box 3637, Apollo Beach, FL 33572
I quote "...the magazine dedicated to electronic audio folk art,
cassette culture and electronic & experimental music! An inside
look at the indie music scene featuring articles, profiles and
editorials by home tapers themselves!"
ESD - East Side Digital
530 North 3rd Street, Minneapolis, MN 55401
A small label that has releases by Fred Frith, Henry Cow, Happy The
Man, National Health, The Residents, and more. Last time I wrote
they mailed me a catalog that was months out of date, but the
prices were pretty decent and cheaper than other mailorder vendors
that carry their releases. Associated with Ryko's mailorder too.
PO Box 13718, Portland, OR 97213
(503) 281-0247 (10 AM - 5 PM US Pacific Time ONLY !!! Mon-Sat)
Eurock started as a magazine in 1973, specializing in European
progressive, space rock and electronic music. The owner of this
enterprise is Archie Patterson, whose preferences lie primarily in
electronic driven space music and melodic progressive rock, and his
lists tend to reflect this. His lists come out every 60 days, and
each item is accompanied by a brief description and synopsis which
I've found to be very accurate for the most part. He has his own
in-house label (also called Eurock) which features artists like
Gandalf, Green Isac, Erik Wollo, Dweller At the Threshold and Tim
Story. One thing to note is that Eurock generally does not restock
items after they are sold out unless the demand is overwhelming, and
he gets things in fairly modest quantities, so the best policy is to
give him a call as soon as the catalog comes out to reserve the items
you want - if you wait more than a few weeks some things will no
longer be in stock. Generally he's happy to discuss the items he has
in stock over the phone
The Kinesis label sports such artists as Fonya, Cathedral and
Illuvatar. They have an excellent web page and take credit cards.
They also have CDs by other labels for sale.
P.O. Box 600, Nokesville VA, 22123
Used LPs only. Phone only between 10am and 10pm EST and ask for
Music Books Plus
2315 Whirlpool St., #132 Niagara Falls, NY 14305
23 Hannover Dr., #7 St. Catharines, ON L2W 1A3, Canada
Music Books Plus distributes worldwide books and videos on music,
songwriting, recording, audio, multimedia, video, lighting and
computers. To subscribe to the free monthly electronic newsletter,
send message to email address above. To receive a printed catalog,
include postal address. Contact: Tricia Janzen.
G.A.S. - Gong Appreciation Society
Gas America, Po Box 1151, North Wales, PA 19454
GAS in the USA offers some merchandise, tapes, tour info and
newsletters but carries less of the rare tapes and CDs and other
products compared to GAS UK. See GAS UK listing in the international
mailorder section for more details. Not really a mailorder source,
but worth mentioning here:
Gong San Francisco Concert info hotline
P.O. Box 470535
SF, CA 94147-0535
Info about upcoming San Francisco area shows and releases by Gong and
Gong-related tour network. Daevid Allen, The Magick Brothers, Tim
Blake, Mother Gong, and Gilli Smyth have done local shows already,
and Richard Sinclair, Kevin Ayers, David Cross band, and Gordon
Haskell are some of the artists possibly playing here in the future.
Also, if you're interested in Gong, see the Spectrum Music Video
listing for info on a Gongmaison live video they carry. Send an SASE
to them for more info.
199 Strathmore #5, Brighton, MA 02135-5210
Focus tends to be on hard core electronics. David Prescott, Jorge
Thomasius and Conrad Schnitzler. Also distribute Badland, Radium,
Pogus and other labels.
Grand Rapids Compact Disc
67 54th St SW Wyoming, MI 49548
The owner says he is currently stocking about 400 progressive
titles. They also offer to let customers listen to any CD before
The Internet Used CD Mail-Server
The used music server maintains a database of used music (CDs,
records, tapes, etc.) for sale and a separate (but equal) database
of used music that is wanted. Send mail with the subject HELP for
more info on using the server. You can subscribe to a mailing list
of weekly updates to the list of CDs for sale. It's an excellent
way to buy and sell used CDs without a music store making a large
markup on the deal. All kinds of CDs are bought and sold there. The
lp and tape list doesn't seem to get used as much.
575 3 St. Apt. 1-D, Brooklyn, NY 11215
A mail-order distributor run by my friend Tony Coulter (who does a
great radio show on WFMU). He's an expert on obscure progressive
rock, a lot of which he has available for sale or trade. He also
carries a lot of Recommended/Re stuff. Some random items from his
current catalog: Ron Geesin, Super Sister (Dutch prog rock),
Blegvad, Re Quarterly, obscure Italian prog rock, Fat, Faust, R.
Stevie Moore, and many many things I've never heard of. Carries LPS
Doug has a very extensive list of all kinds of progressive from all
over the world, and his prices are fairly reasonable. A really easy
guy to deal with and not too opinionated about things. If you call
(after 4PM EST) he'll take your order right then and ship it as soon
as he gets payment. He sends everything out priority mail, which all
makes his TAT very quick. From the west coast, my experience has been
typically 7 working days from the day I phoned in the order and sent
the payment, to the day the discs arrive. That beats everyone else
hands down, even guys on the west coast
Doug's definitely the fastest turnaround in the business. He handles
a really good selection of Italian 70's prog, I'm really impressed
with his selection of other types of stuff too. He will make a
sampler tape of various discs in his list for a nominal charge, but
don't ask him to record the whole disc, just selections. He
advertises in goldmine every two weeks, which is a good way to keep
up with the new stuff he gets in stock. He's also got an extensive
list of rare and o/p LP's. Highly Recommended.
The Laser's Edge
P.O. Box 2450, Cherry Hill, NJ 08034
(609) 751-6444 (7PM to 11PM EST, No Later !!!)
The Laser's Edge is a Label and mail-order CD only distribution run
by Ken Golden. Ken gets the medal for having positively the most
descriptive and informative catalog of any mail-order outfit I've
ever dealt with, every disc is reviewed carefully, and opinions are
offered - one of the few people I've ever seen who will tell you that
a disc he carries is crappy if it really is! The in-house label (TLE
also) has many releases mostly by long forgotten independent artists
from the 70's, but there are some new releases as well. Artists
include: The Load, A Triggering Myth, Werwolf, Landberk, Spring,
Nightwinds, Atlantis Philharmonic and others.
His tastes lean more towards early post-psychedelic proto-progressive
stuff, and this is evidenced in many of the releases on his own
label. One must remember this when using the descriptions in his
catalog to make a judgement on something. He tends to get unusual
stuff that, like Wayside, nobody else seems to want to carry. I've
found him only to be moderately friendly on the phone (but then I'm
one of those people that calls at 11PM too!), he generally won't go
into any further elaboration on items he has in stock, "I think I
described that adequately in the catalog" is his stock answer. He's
been very dependable, but since he's a one-man operation, things get
a little slower if you order right after the catalog comes out
(2x/year), he does take Visa and Mastercard. Strongly recommended.
PO Box 520, Linden, VA 22642
Carries Kit Watkins releases and other stuff by his cohorts in
Happy the Man, as well as other new-age, electronic and space
artists. Has advanced on-line ordering facilities using First
M & M
P.O. Box 63, Ashland, MA 01721
The proprietor's name is Mark. Don't know the last name. He doesn't
deal in super rare stuff, but he only does Prog and fusion. His
prices are good, and he does stock a nice little selection of new
independent things (such as my own). He's always been reliable and
fast when I've ordered from him, and he has a sale every few
PO Box 10004, Silver Spring, Maryland 20914, USA
Another Goldmine advertiser. Stocks a lot of progressive,
psychedelic, fusion, and plain old rock and roll of various
persuasions. They deal in CD's, LP's, etc., etc. Their catalog is a
must for the serious collector. I've had excellent service,
including free shipping for giving them some Internet info(!).
They're not cheap, but their prices are in line with other vendors
of obscure music.
PO Box 390, Old Chelsea Station, NY NY 10011
Another Goldmine advertiser. Stocks a lot of progressive,
psychedelic, fusion, and plain old rock and roll of various
persuasions. They deal in CD's, LP's, etc., etc. Their catalog is
a must for the serious collector. I've had excellent service. They
request alternate selections due to problems keeping obscure albums
in stock, and they'll make every effort to fill an order even if
they don't have the item in stock. I asked them about the
availability of two LP's once, and they went out and got them for
me. They're not cheap, but their prices are in line with other
vendors of obscure music.
PO Box 19231, Portland, OR 97280
Publishes an extensive list of records/CDs/45s/collectors stuff.
Mostly rock but some em/progressive stuff. A lot of lesser known
rock and some oldies. Most of their vinyl is used but in very good
to mint condition.
17 Airport Road, Nashua, NH 03063
(800) 648-7972 [8:30am-6:00pm EST] (603) 881 5729 [9:00am-4:00pm
EST] New Release Hotline +1 603 883 1914
Noteworthy is a mail-order only outfit who deal only in domestic
product, and only the best known of it as well. They still have a
very good selection and have been especially helpful in rounding out
my collections of Kansas, Pat Metheny, Zappa, King Crimson, Tull and
others. Why order from these guys, you might ask ? Because their
prices are about two dollars cheaper than you'll find in almost any
record store, and when you order enough the shipping is next to
nothing. In some cases their prices for new product are a dollar less
than you could get the same used disc for in a store. Real nice
catalog, call and ask for it.
Noteworthy does ship outside the US, but I think the shipping rates
are a bit expensive. There is a fee (I think $5) for catalog requests
from outside the US, but I believe they will send a catalog free with
your first order - so you may be able to call or fax an order for an
item they are likely to stock and get the catalog free that way.
Of Sound Mind
4134 E. Joppa Road #104, Batlimore, MD 21236
The East Coast's prog Mecca! After David Hodgson closed down
Playing By Ear in Baltimore and moved it out West, Chris Lamka
bought the store and the stock. He later moved it up the road a few
miles. Chris concentrates more on progressive than David did, with
an excellent selection of Italian, Brazilian, French and US prog
(other countries are well-represented also). Good electronic
selection, also. Chris is very supportive of the prog scene in and
around Baltimore, with many in-store appearances of local and
regional prog acts. Rumor has it he's trying to set up a prog fest
of his own... Prices aren't quite as good as Ranjits', but this
business is the man's bread and butter, so I really don't mind that
201 North Coler, Urbana, IL 61801
YAID... Yet another indie distributor. Everything from AAAK to
Hector Zazou, also imports on Creation.
Park Avenue Records, P.O. Box 19296, Seattle, WA 98109
I haven't ordered anything from them yet, but I have seen their big
catalog and been very impressed. (I know folks who have ordered
from them and been perfectly satisfied.)
Small, odd selection of compilations and mailorder with some cheap
and some regularly priced items. Includes works by Frith, Kaiser, Don
Cherry, Sun Ra, Negativland, Daevid Allen, Mother Gong, Made To
Measure and more.
Monthly catalog, 12 pages, now concentrated around their own releases
including the new Hugh Hopper, a recent Henry Kaiser and Amy Denio.
Small new and used CDs area, very Gong-based, Frith, Kaiser, Geesin.
Some used vinyl, too. They also give information about `their'
artists, mainly tourdates: Gong, Amy Denio and related, Frank Pahl
and related, `Steve Horowitz and The Code'.
351 Magnolia Avenue, Long Beach, CA 90802
Official US outlet for King Crimson/Robert Fripp projects on the
Discipline label. They accept credit card orders by email.
All along they have been a mail order outlet and, although I've
rarely dealt with them by mail, I've heard a lot of horror stories
not unlike my dealings with Calendula (see above). I personally have
no bad experiences. Their in-house label features artists like
Solstice, Xaal, Sinister Street, Anthony Phillips, Gryphon, Steeleye
Span, Aragon, Wayne Kramer and others. They are getting national
distribution in major chain stores like Tower and others, so there's
really no need to buy their titles directly from them. They also
handle distribution for bands like Galahad and Final Conflict, and
stock a modest selection of other imported titles as well, although
my feeling is that they would like to get out of the direct
mail-order business altogether and sell to distributors only. Like
many others, I've found that these guys are less than totally
reliable about getting things in that they say they will get in, so
my recommendation is to never order anything unless they have it in
stock when you order.
They recently issued a catalog which explains that they decided to
start up the mail distribution service again "due to the abundance of
letters and phone calls we have received". You may want to add also
that (as far as I can tell) they seem to have the lowest prices of
any catalog--$10.98 for in house, $11.98 for other domestics, and
$12.98 for most imports. As for their being `risky', I would give
them another chance before writing them off.
566 Crystalberry Terrace, San Jose, CA 95129
Such a clever idea: Sell CD's over the net. Anyway, I'd been
hearing about Ranjit for a couple years, mostly from Ken Welchoff
of Progressive, who recommended him highly, before I actually got
in touch with him. It was other netters highest recommendations
that finally convinced me. He sends out periodic "Descriptive"
catalogs over the net, as well as simple lists that list everything
he has in stock. All you need to do is email him and ask him to
send it. He's a very friendly guy, knowledgeable and helpful, his
selection is extremely good and his prices are good also. Once your
order is confirmed, he holds it for you, you send him the payment,
and he sends you the discs. Very simple, very convenient. He also
carries all currently available issues of Audion Magazine, and,
like Doug Larson, will make a sampler tape of things from his list
for a nominal fee.
2395 Glendale Blvd., CA 90039
These guys offer CDs of some live shows, Westwood One radio discs,
etc. but nothing specifically progressive, just general interest.
Ordered once - service was fast.
We have been in business for 14 years. We sell new, used, domestic
and import, CD's, LP's, Cass and Laser Videos. Our specialty is
60's and 70's rarities, progressive and alternative. We also have a
large selection of Japanese laser discs. We have a 3,200 square ft
store on the corner of Interstate 635 and Oates Drive in Mesquite
(a suburb of Dallas). We ship out daily UPS, and accept all major
The best store that I've found for progressive stuff is Round Sounds
in Redondo Beack (near L.A.) It's a small store that is almost all
progressive stuff including lots of imports. They do mail/phone
Round Sounds is a small record store which also operates a CD
mail-order business. The proprietors name is Ed, and he's a real
friendly guy who'll gladly offer an opinion on something in his list
(which is mailed out at irregular intervals and has no descriptions,
just a list). Every time I'm in southern California I always make a
point to stop by his store, he has a lot of "Rare" CD's (ahem) that
he doesn't put in his list. I understand he also has periodic
"Progressive Listening Parties" at his newer larger store, which I've
not seen yet (above address may be wrong, call first for sure) His
list is very complete, but I find that a lot of things he lists are
only occasionally in stock, and like Progressive, he tends to have a
lot of excuses why things in his list aren't in stock. Over the last
few years I've ordered from him many times, and I've generally had
good luck, but more than occasionally I've had to call and remind him
of my order, which in a few cases he'd just forgotten to send. In
some cases it
Most unfortunately, Ed has closed his Pacific Coast Highway
storefront. He continues to run his intermittent (to say the least)
mail order, and he pops up at the occasional record swap meet. When
I last tried telephoning, I got a forwarding number of (310)
We like all types of progressive rock and have been in business three
years promoting and distributing bands from all over the world. We
have an extensive database of over 6000 titles and are compiling the
most comprehensive world guide to progressive rock ever seen to date.
Our catalogs are descriptive and offer some of the best prices in the
industry. We take payment by Check($ only) Money Order,
International Money Order, Visa, Mastercard. We are always looking
for new bands or labels to distribute and we offer the largest
selection of American progressive bands!
Catalogs are updated quarterly and may soon be done on a monthly
basis. In addition we have a World WIde Web page in the works for
later in 1995 from which you will be able to directly get the catalog
on-line and place orders through.
540 Alabama, Suite 315, San Francisco, CA 94110
Carry stuff by Merzbow, Art Bears, Von Magnet, Einstrzende
Neubauten, Big Butter, etc.
PO Box 83296, Portland, OR 97283
(503) 335 0706
(503) 335 0805
Deals in experimental/industrial music almost exclusively. They
have a very good catalogue which they'll send you if you mail
Sound City 2000
P.O.Box 22149, Portland, OR 97222-0149
These guys have specific catalogs for Japanese, German and British
releases. They have no stock, they order after you pay... a flimsy
deal if you ask me, plus their prices are extortionate.
Spectrum Music Video
Has a very large music video catalog of NTSC VHS and many laser
discs including imports. Includes some Prog stuff like King
Crimson, Enid, etc. They carry the Gongmaison 1991, Brixton, UK
show at the Fridge for sale for $19.95 plus $3.50 shipping. This
video has some great special effects and brief interviews with
Daevid Allen and Didier are spliced in. It's great! It includes
lots of old Gong material circa Camembert Electrique.
PO Box 2034, La Habra, CA 90631
(714) 894-9506 (M-Th 7PM-10PM PST)
Syn-phonic is owned by Greg Walker, who also has an in-house label
which specializes primarily in American progressive artifacts, but he
also has some current artists signed. The roster includes Kalaban,
Now, Babylon, Mirthrandir, Northstar, Cathedral and others. For years
he was releasing this stuff on vinyl only, notorious for their
marginal pressing quality. However, since around 1991 Greg has been
releasing CDs only, and unlike the LPs, no quality was spared on
these, either in the pressings or the booklets, which tend to have
extensive information on the artists, much like America's answer to
Musea. He has gone back and re-released much of his vinyl on disc
now, and eventually plans to re-release everything and then some. His
mail-order list is extensive, and includes imports from all over the
world. His prices on Japanese product are the best anywhere, frankly
I don't know how he can do it, but his prices are roughly the same as
one would pay in Tokyo! He also has an amazing selection of 70's
Syn-phonic is my favorite place to order from. Greg Walker is easy
to deal with, and gives honest evaluations of the music. He's very
prompt - you'll always get the discs you order in less than 2 weeks.
On top of that, his selection is excellent, and prices are
consistently low. I highly recommend Syn-phonic.
Tec Tones/Ralph Records/Negativmailorderland
P.O. Box 1477, Hoboken, NJ 07030
TEC TONES is the mailorder wing of Ralph Records, TEC Tones
releases, and Negativland products. They also carry some other
items like imports of Fred Frith and ESD Henry Cow releases. Mainly
it's the mailorder company for the Residents' releases and for
Frith, Snakefinger, Clubfoot and other releases on the Ralph label
and distribution for some other small labels from the US and other
parts of the world.
Van Richter Records
PO Box 13321, La Jolla, CA 92039
Industrial label/mail order outlet. Accepts on-line orders through
Rick Chafen at Voiceprint books the US tours of the Gong/Canterbury
network (which strays beyond those parameters but it's the easiest
way to describe it). Rick has helped present or is working on tours
by Daevid Allen, The Magick Brothers, Tim Blake, Mother Gong, Gilli
Smyth, Richard Sinclair, Kevin Ayers, Didier Malherbe Trio, David
Cross band, and Gordon Haskell. He's the person to talk to if you'd
like to help book shows by these artists in your city.
Voiceprint US has a couple of products and also imports UK Voiceprint
releases by Daevid Allen, Magick Brothers, Tim Blake, Nic Potter,
David Jackson, Robert Wyatt and more. A number of releases including
early Canterbury and recent Canterbury projects and also works by
David Bedford, Kevin Ayers. These releases can be ordered from
Voiceprint or from other distributors at comparable prices.
Voiceprint tends to only stock a few copies of the UK VP releases.
Very occasional catalogs or newsletters are mailed out.
PO Box 8427, Silver Spring, MD 20902-8427
(301) 589-1803 new release info (recording) (no catalog requests
via phone, you must write for a catalog or view it on the Web page)
Wayside is the Mail Order outfit that I've been dealing with the
longest, probably around 8 or 9 years. They have two catalogs: An
annual "Green" catalog of Items they keep in stock all year long,
plus a quarterly (?) "White" catalog that lists Items that are either
new in stock or that will not be restocked after they are gone, many
of these items are very limited quantity stuff, so after you get the
white catalog it's best to act fast. Wayside carries a wide variety
of progressive stuff, but clearly favors the fringe, RIO, and other
uncategorizable material over the `melodic pop' type progressive.
They have an in-house label: Cuneiform, featuring artists like
Univers Zero, PFS, Curlew, Richard Pinhas, Dr. Nerve, Miriodor, Henry
Kaiser, Phil Miller, However, Forever Einstein, etc. The catalogs
usually have a brief (3-6 line) description of the items they carry.
I've found these descriptions to sometimes be inaccurate and
misleading, so it's best to proceed with caution if you're about to
buy something you'v
Wayside is also a good source for mailorder for folks outside the
USA. It's one of the few catalogs I recall that lists international
shipping rates, and based on what I've heard it offers fairly
competitive rates compared to what CDs sell for in some parts of the
The Wild Places (Adventures In Vinyl... And Beyond.)
621 "A" Hanover Street, Santa Cruz, CA 95062
(408) 427-3043 (Don't call after 10pm PST!)
Run by Michael Piper. His first catalog (March 93) is 42 pages of
new and used LPs and CDs, with a lot more vinyl than cd stock. The
catalog probably has about 1400 items or more, mostly obscure
psychadelic and progressive. Some of the prices are collectors
prices (one item here is listed at $975!) but there's a lot of
reasonably priced items too. I bought from him once. He gave me a
partial refund with the order because he noticed the condition
wasn't quite as good as he had rated it in the catalog.
P.O.Box 58040, Louisville, KY 40268-0040
Have their own label. I wrote to them once about a couple specific
titles, he had them but the asking price was a joke. Asked them to
send a catalog, they sent an auction list of some rare prog LPs. I
know a lot of people who buy from them.
IN STOCK- progressive, classic rock, rock rock compact discs. Imports
from Europe, Japan, Scandinavia. Serving USA and Canada.
3422 Cherry Tree Ln., Erlanger, KY 41018
The guy who runs Zounds was the former partner of Steve Roberts of
ZNR (he's the `Z'). I've ordered from him with no problems for the
most part, though I did get one LP (an expensive one) which I
thought was not in the advertised condition.
Vendors outside the USA
Beastone Records/Hideake Ueda
24-15-405, Atsubetsu-Chuo 4-2, Sapporo 004, Japan
I've only ordered from Beastone a few times, their catalog is
extensive but mostly general interest stuff (non-progressive), but
they do (or did) have a decent selection of "Live" (ahem) CD's and
other "Rarities"... And he will find things for you that aren't in
the catalog. My first dealing with Beastone was in an effort to
locate the o/p Happy the Man CD that I didn't get from Calendula
(see above), and they came through almost immediately ! I haven't
ordered from them in a long time, but they do take IMO's in US
Currency, and deliver stuff very quickly (more quickly than most
domestic outfits). Hideake Ueda is the guy's name.
Metropolis Import, 12 Rue Saint-Leonard, 44000 NANTES, France
(16) 40 89 12 03
PO Box 4416, London, SW19 8XR, UK
Run by Dave Stewart and Barbara Gaskin. Deals mainly in their
material and related stuff. You can get the National Health
"Complete" CD set from here in the UK.
P.O. Box 10 14 31, 6900 Heidelberg, Germany
Advertises in Goldmine; carries lots of bootlegs. Some folks I know
have dealt with them with no problem. Another friend claims to have
been ripped off and says he knows other who have been too.
Goldmine refused to get involved in any disputes between advertisor
and customer. If you order from these guys you run the risk of
customs seizures. Best bet is to insure, which won't protect from
customs but might help if they claim the discs were shipped and you
never received them.
Postbus 460, 3990 GG Houten, The Netherlands
Apparently filling in the gap left by the defunct SI Music outlet.
Compact Disc Services
Magnum House, 140 Seagate, Dundee, DD1 2HF, Scotland
Their main specialty is electronic and new age synth music: what they
don't know about the availability of T.Dream, Kit Watkins, Gandalf,
etc, etc, isn't worth knowing. They are also very helpful with all
manner of progressive stuff, including Gong, Canterbury, Bruford,
Camel, etc, etc. These were the guys who, when I called up about a
CD of Pink Floyd's Relics, instantly knew that it was only ever
available from Australia, its legality was in some doubt, and has
been out of print for about two years. They will get imports from
anywhere in the world, and if you're thinking about a Japanese
import, they will often have a good idea whether it's likely to soon
become available from elsewhere, and therefore be much cheaper if you
wait a while. Their prices are not discounted, and they do charge
postage, but they give a good service (recorded delivery within the
UK), and always seem to know how to try and get obscure stuff.
Very good outlet, reliable with reasonable prices (for Britain :-).
This months ad shows releases by Anyone's Daughter, Asia Minor,
Cannata, Circus, Cirkel, The Enid, Ivory, Kaipa, Kayak, Mercy Train,
Mythos, Pendragon, Red Jasper, SRC and Summer Indoors all for around
Austmannav. 9, P.O.Box 1756, 5501 Haugesund, Norway
+47 52 71 61 70
+47 52 72 98 19
They deal in all kinds of music, if interested in special things,
talk to Arnstein (manager) who know most about everything. They are
very helpful. They release 2 main catalogs and 10 updates pr. year.
Catalogues can be subscribed for 5-6 pounds for one year, 9-10 for
two years. Most of the catalog is printed in norwegian, but there
are some english columns as well. Their normal prices are around
13-14 pounds of which 18.02% can be deducted (norw. VAT). Special
offers, discounts etc. are also obtainable. Orders for foreign
customers are at minimum 500 nok (45-47 pounds), orders can be
phoned, faxed or mailed (snail-mail). Note that it is the cost of
the total order that is important, not the actual cost (if any
records are unavailable). They prefer payment by creditcards (VISA,
AMERICAN EXPRESS and MASTERCARD), but pre-payment is also accepted
through a proforma invoice. If things are out of stock, and
therefore the delivery takes some time, they will inform you on
your order-status if you call them. A ver
PO Box 103-09, Te Rapa, Hamilton, New Zealand
+64 7 824 8240
+64 7 824 8240
Import and sell Progressive, Space Rock,Psychedelic, Electronic &
Experimental music. New catalogue every 2nd month with supplements
in between so that this way we have a new publication once a month,
with the supplement listing new releases & imports between
catalogues. Stock totals some 700 items with 99% being CD's. Labels
that we deal with: Acme, Cyclops, Delerium, Dovetail, Emergency
Broadcast System, Mystic Stones, Voiceprint (all UK) Crimsonic,
Foxtrot, Xotic Mind (Sweden), Erdenklang, Manikin, Music Is
Intelligence (Germany), Art Sublime, Lasers Edge, Wild Places (USA)
plus Spalax (France). We also run a weekly two hour radio show and
called "THE CRANIUM MUSIC SHOW". As we are sole distributors for
some of the above labels we are starting to get some shops stocking
Prog etc. By the way I think we can SAFELY say we are the largest
stockists of Prog, Psychedelic etc in NZ (and POSSIBLY Australia).
Delerium Records/The Freak Emporium
PO Box 1288, Gerrards Cross, Bucks, SL9 9YB, UK.
+44 (0)1753 893008
+44 (0)1753 892879
Extensive mail-order list combining new releases and reissues.
Concentrates mainly on psychedelic and underground titles, ltd
edition reissues from 60s through 90s. Send E:Mail, SAE or IRC for
current list. Updated lists of new stock also available on
request. Our tastes are quite diverse: Prog-rock, Space-Rock,
Kraut-Rock, Psychedelia, Garage, Folk-Psych, Ambient, Rave - and
everypoint inbetween. We also run our own label, dedicated to
releasing new progressive/psychedelic and underground music by new
artists; and a Porcupine Tree information service. Credit cards
accepted, but there is a 5% surcharge. Order turn-round is usually
24 to 48 hours, and goods are dispatched the same day payment is
received. Double CD "Pick & Mix" label sampler available for 5 UK,
6 Europe, 7 (or $12 US Cash) elsewhere. Cheques/PO's payable to
Diffusion I Media
4487 Rue Adam, Montreal (QC), Canada H1V 1T9
Carry some Canadian emusic indie artists like Michel Redolfi,
Bernard Parmaging and others. Only accept US postal MO, IMO or
check drawn on a Canadian bank.
Discipline Global Mobile
PO Box 1533, Salisbury, Wiltshire, SP5 5ER
(+44) (01722) 781042
(+44) (01722) 780165
Official outlet for King Crimson/Robert Fripp projects in the UK as
part of Fripp's new distributed distribution project. They now take
credit card orders by email for which they need your full name (as
apearing on the card), full postal address, card number and card
expiry date. You can also order by credit card from the World Wide
Web page given above.
G.A.S. - Gong Appreciation Society
PO Box 871, Glastonbury, Somerset, BA6 9FE, UK
GAS in the UK carries a number of tapes of rare Gong and Gong
related folks, LPs, CDs, tshirts, posters, lyrics, newsletters,
tour info and other goodies. Also see the US GAS listing above. As
of 1990, GAS Membership costs 8 pounds per year. You receive atape
of unreleased material, a discount of 10% on anything ordered, and
quarterly newsletters to which you are welcome to contribute. I
suspect rates may have changed. I'd recommend sending an IRC asking
for more info.
c/o Clive Littlewood, Silverton Villa, Higher Bugle, St. Austell,
Cornwall, PL26 8PY, UK
+44 (01726) 850232
+44 (01726) 69135
Phone contact should ask for "Cleve" and aim to phone between 5.30
and 6.30pm. Electronic Dreams is a label and outlet for new
PO Box 12319 - 00135, Rome, Italy
Mail order home of the Progland label. Also carries things from the
following labels: Seventh, Ageness, Ciclo, Briskeby, Kalemegdan,
WMMS, Mezzo Disctribution, Progressive Rock Worldwide, Vinyl Top and
33a Tolworth Park Road, Tolworth, Surrey, KT6 7RL
+44 (0181) 339 9965 (Monday to Friday & answerphone at weekends)
+44 (0181) 399 0070
Good reputation. Run by Malcolm Parker who is really friendly on
the phone and very helpful generally. In addition to being a
pleasant place to order from, their prices are superb (modulo the
UK!) ... I have not seen a cheaper place in the UK. Their
catalogue has a good range, nothing too esoteric, plus special
sections devoted to Canterbury, `Head' music etc. P and P rates are
very good indeed and they seem to send orders of 3+ CDs recorded
delivery. Very quickly too ... I often get next-day service even if
I ring in the afternoon! They have a special offers list that
includes currently favoured material that's offered at an all-in
rate which includes P and P. They also send out an update with
end-of-line items. A very good mail order outlet.
139 Hawkfield Crescent NW, Calgary, Canada T3G 1Z4
(403) 241-9073 (5-9 PM PST)
Tim is a guy who deals mainly in used LPs and works shows in his
area, he's got good contacts with a lot of other dealers &
collectors in his area, and seems to have no trouble finding rare
and out-of-print stuff if you give him a little time. He found me 6
o/p albums by Maneige over the course of the last year, and found
the whole FM catalog for a friend of mine, including the rare first
album "Headroom", all for very reasonable prices. His service is
extremely good, turn-around-time is quick, and he's a really
friendly chap to talk with on the phone. Recommended for o/p
Mike Lloyd Music Mail Order
14-20 Brunswick Street, Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent, ST1 1DR, UK
Formerly known as Lotus Records, these guys have specialized catalogs
for Canterbury, Zeuhl (Magma), and other stuff.
I've only ordered from them once, but I got both Paga CDs as well as
the 2CD version of Magma Live. These three discs are nearly
impossible to get in the US, but I called Mike Lloyd's and got them
with no problem. Shipping did take about a month, but it was well
worth the wait. When you call, ask for Andy or Clarey, as they handle
the mail order division.
612 Southmead Road, Filton, Bristol, BS12 7RF, UK
Last I checked (several years ago) this was a one man operation,
Martin K Reed. He has a decent variety of British indie electronic
musicians like Ian Boddy, Steve Frost and Mark Shreeve.
Musea is a label with over 200 productions to its name including many
prestigious groups such as Minimum Vital, Atoll, and Pulsar. The
Musea catalog has a thousand titles including independent productions
from all over the world as well as imports from Japan, Brazil, Korea,
Italy, Germany, Poland, etc.. The label also publishes the
French-language Musea magazine.
Musea take credit card orders by email and aim for a 3 to 5 day turn
around. They have an excellent Web catalogue and ordering service.
The Music Specialists
50 Raffles Place, #03-011 Shell Tower, Singapore 0104
Carries a lot of live and bootleg CDs. Similar to the CD Connection
in Germany, but supposedly more reliable per one friend who has
used both. They'll send lists for $2.
Normal Mail Order
Bonner Talweg 276, 5300 Bonn 1, Germany
228-22 06 55
228-22 16 56
Excellent selection of bands on tiny labels. Lots of really obscure
punk, Australian, New Zealand and German bands. They are very
prompt at answering fax enquiries and will probably mail you a
catalogue for free. They are also capable of locating out of date
obscure vinyl and CD's.
The famous Krautrock label's mail order outlet. They specialise in,
surprisingly, Krautrock, 70s progressive and world-music.
Orage Rock Progressif Enr.
C.P. 58058 Qubec, Qubec, Canada, G2B 5H4
This is a very convenient source for Canadian prog. rock fans, with
reasonable prices (in Canadian dollars).
Here is some of the blurb you get when you send the body "help" to
the above email adress: Pastel Blue is a mail order CD and video
shop, located in England. At the last count we had 35000 CDs, 3500
CD singles, 4200 videos and 900 games in our database, which you can
search by email using commands described below. We accept orders by
email and payment by cash, cheque or credit card, and can export to
Large collection (incl. > 100.000 american import cd's), good prices
and shipping rates, reliable, but quite slow (they don't have
anything in stock). On their list there's p.e. Anglagard, Brand X,
Happy the Man, Gryphon, National Health, Yezda Urfa, ...
5/7 Brown Street, Manchester, M2 1DA, UK
+44 (0161) 839 8008
Not actually visited this outlet but I have had things bought for
me from there. Said things were quite obscure and had hand-written
stickers giving details of genre and links to other artists which
Avenue Sana Fe 3044-1, 1425 Capital Federal, Buenos Aires,
"Official" outlet for King Crimson/Robert Fripp projects in South
Rotwandstr 64, 8004, Zurich, Switzerland
+41-1 - 291 46 60
+41-1 - 291 46 62
The RecRec label has lots of quirky European releases like Fred
Frith, Bruniferd, Nimal and so on. They run a respectable shop
front and, from the same address, a mail order service. Obviously
they have all the RecRec releases in stock, but they have a
generally good selection. Their catalogue is not free. It's a
paperback about an inch thick and full of amusing opinions. They
are probably only amusing if you can read German.
79 Beulah Road, Thornton Heath, Surrey, CR7 8JG, UK
+44 (0181) 771 1063
+44 (0181) 771 3138
Label/business set up by central RIO musician/composer Chris Cutler
in 1978 that's still going strong. The RR label covers a huge
diversity of musics from all over the world. What the label covers
and what the mail-order side stocks is decided purely on Cutler's
perception of musical merit. It therefore doesn't "carry labels" as
such. Issues a catalogue with frequent updates. There is a lot of
obscure and fantastic music in the RR catalogue ... highly
recommended that you take a look at it.
Jungmannova 7/692, 736 01 Havirov-Mesto, Czechoslovakia
A possible source for East European CD releases.
Postfach 10 11 43, 2900 Bremen 1, Germany
I originally got referred to Taxim when I wrote directly to Line
Records looking for a distributor for their product. I've ordered
from them a bunch of times and have always had very good luck (they
accept major credit cards as well, which simplifies things a lot
when ordering from overseas). They apparently no longer carry the
entire Line label and as such I've had difficulty finding things in
their catalog that I couldn't find from a domestic distributor, so
I haven't ordered anything in a year or so. Prices are very good.
Catalog is a glossy mag, all in german.
Terrapin Trucking Company
2 Park Road, Crouch End, London, N8 8TD, UK
I regularly fax orders to them using my Mastercard - if they don't
have it they don't charge for it! Shipping to America costs about
$3.00 for the first disc and $1.50 for each subsequent one.
1 Conduit Street, Leicester, LE2 0JN, UK
Ultima Thule is a store and mailorder business affiliated with
Audion Magazine and thus run by two extremely knowledgeable
gentlemen. Large A4 catalogue every year with a great deal in it.
They send out update lists regularly to active customers. You need
to subscribe (not expensive) to these if you are not an active
customer. A superb selection, covering the whole range of
progressive and new music. A little expensive compared with other
UK outlets. They take just about any form of payment and offer
various mail schemes including listen-and-return if you do not like
it and all of this internationally. If you live in the UK, next day
delivery is the norm. I often order by phone in the afternoon and
receive goods the next morning. Very highly recommended indeed.
P.O. Box 1164, 7526 U-Weiher, Germany
Supposedly a source of bootlegs - I saw the address in a post to
rec.music.gdead where someone was asking for any more info on this
P.O. Box 5, Derwentside, County Durham, UK, DH9 7HR
(0191) 512 1103
Mainly new Canterbury-related releases. Including stuff by Daevid
Allen, Robert Wyatt, Jakko Jakszyk and Rick Biddulph.
The Frederic Dannen quote at the top of this file is from a very
interesting book about the music industry and the "Powers broker and
fast money inside the music business" and the greed and ambition and
occasional mob and other illegal connections of the industry. It's
pretty ugly stuff and worth reading for a better understanding of why
the artist is often the victim of the industry. - Malcolm Humes
How To Find Rare And/Or Obscure Recordings
While much progressive music is rare and/or obscure, most newcomers
are used to finding Genesis and Yes CDs in their local shops. By far
the majority of discussed artists however are not generally stocked
by normal outlets. FAQ 6 lists some shops worldwide that do stock the
more esoteric material but generally you have to be rather lucky to
have one of these oulets near to you. If you are serious about
exploring progressive music, you simply must use mail order. This is
by far the best way of obtaining the music. Many of the sources in
FAQ 2 are reputable outlets and have been used for many years by
people who read r.m.p. Simply post and ask about an outlet you are
not sure about. Some are used regularly and have good reputations.
You will notice them being mentioned quite often. Here is a list of
some of the most well-known and trusted outlets that people on r.m.p
have had a good releationship with in the past. You can find more
information on them in FAQ 2 and FAQ 6. There are, of course, many
Syn-phonic (Greg Walker)
Symphonic and Yes/Genesis influenced prog, neo-prog, emphasis on
European and US prog/fusion. Some RIO and experimental.
Laser's Edge (Ken Golden)
Most prog and fusion, including some Italian and a lot of rarer
psych. Has net access (las...@aol.com).
All types of prog, but mostly symphonic, 70's British prog and
Italian. Some experimental.
Experimental, RIO, world, ambient, electronic and unclassifiable
musics (and "normal" progressive music as well). If no one else has
heard of it or it is very rare or strange, Wayside probably carries
it or at least knows about it.
ZNR (Steve Roberts)
Rare and US material, much obscure vinyl.
European and US progressive, neo-progressive, electronic. Has net
access (ran...@netcom.com) and a web page at
Situated in the UK, has excellent catalogue and caters for most
tastes. Many special offers, the owners are very knowledgeable and
produce Audion magazine (see FAQ 3). They undertake international
orders and accept all major credit cards by phone.
Based in the UK. They accept credit card orders by phone. Some of the
best prices in the UK and the exclusive outlet for Cyclops releases.
How To Find Information On Progressive Music
Often you'd like to know more about a band or to read reviews before
you buy CDs. Here's a few places to look for reviews, info on bands,
and general info on prog and related musics:
The Gibraltar Encyclopedia of Progressive Rock
This is a huge project, originating from the Gibraltar mailing list
(see below) whereby reviews and discographies of thousands of
progressive, experimental and new music bands have been synthesised
and edited into a large book. It is available on the Web and is also
published periodically in hard copy form. The hard copy is currently
sold out. Contact the main editor Mike Taylor
(ge...@plato.museum.tulane.edu) for more information about the hard
copy and its availablity. It is available via ftp in text form from
The Web version can be found at the following places. Choose the site
nearest to you for fastest access.
Home site (maintained by Mike Taylor)
UK mirror (maintained by Phil Kime)
US mirror (maintained by Adam Levin)
An Internet mailing list focusing on more obscure music. Mail to
g...@mailhost.tcs.tulane.edu to subscribe. Moderated by Mike Taylor.
Famous as it has existed for quite a few years. See FAQ 5. It now has
Web pages at
There are many, many prog related magazines and fanzines. FAQ 3 lists
any of them with brief descriptions. English language magazines that
most people recommend are Audion (published in the UK) and I/E
(published in the USA). All cover many forms of progressive,
electronic, ethnic, experimental, and fusion music. For a newsletter
that focuses mainly on progressive rock, there is Expos. It is
published by John Szpara (wi...@holonet.net) and edited by Peter
Thelen (pt...@netcom.com). You can send them mail for more information
or mail expo...@ix.netcom.com. For subscription information see FAQ
3. An easy way to get copies of current and back issues of these
magazines (and others) is to get them from mail order outlets. Some
listed above (in particular, Ranjit) carry magazines.
The Main Progressive Music Site
Adam Levin keeps the main progressive music site that anyone with net
access can get information from. You can access via anonymous ftp (if
you do not know what anonymous ftp is, ask someone at your site)
or via the Web
It contains an ascii version of the *GEPR*, links to all FAQ files,
reviews, interviews, contact listings, trading lists, discographies
and much more information.
Obviously. Most new resources are announced here first.
Find people with similar interests as yours and discuss music with
them. Trade tapes with people. Attend prog listening events and
concerts. Use your ears intelligently. Read FAQ 8 for a guide to
recommended current artists.
Please take the time to read the rest of the FAQ as you may well find
it informative and it will save you posting questions that are
answered therein. The entire FAQ is available via anonymous ftp to
and on the Web at
A question is sometimes put thusly:
"I used to be into progressive music in the 70s and was a big
Yes/Crimson/ELP/etc. fan. I've heard there is a "revival" of sorts
going on. My question is, "Point me at some good contemporary
This is a very important and valuable question to ask as it is the
basis of a developing taste. So, obviously it is also a valuable
question to answer. Just the sort of thing for a FAQ. Of course, this
FAQ is going to change a lot because music has an annoying habit of
being regularly released. Usually at a tempo permanently one-step
ahead of the trickle of pay into your bank. Anyway, this FAQ will
take the form of an alphabetical listing of contemporary progressive
music that it is recommend you try if you are interested in the way
things currently stand. Naturally, this list cannot be exhaustive and
will probably fall short of even being broadly representative but it
is intended to encapsulate the core of recommended new music that
people on r.m.pdiscuss. Each artist is classified by style. This is
not a hard and fast classification but has been based on the
guidelines in FAQ 4. Its purpose is to orient you around the common
colloquialisms that pervade talk about this sort of music on the net
There are a few major flowerings of what falls under the umbrella of
progressive music today. The last few years has seen an explosion of
high quality fusion/RIO from Japan, symphonic music from Sweden, rock
from the USA and experimental/RIO from the UK and Europe. All are
areas well worth looking into. Below, you will find recommendations
for recordings from all of these areas.
Light, airy vocals mixed with equally light music that can get
surprisingly intense at times. Japanese, but not comparable to most
of the other Japanese bands on this list.
Surprisingly underivative for a symphonic band in the 90s. highly
acclaimed by even those hardened due to the degeneracy of the
symphonic field in recent years.
Sound very much like *Red* era King Crimson. Very popular on r.m.p.
Derivative but good nevertheless.
Keyboard driven instrumental female trio.
*Arkana*, *Imago Mundi*
Five piece, English vocals, Hammill/Dream Theater influence.
Bela Fleck and the Flecktones
Fusion (do not be fooled by the banjo!)
*Flight of the Cosmic Hippo*
Truly unique combination of banjo, bass, harmonica, and synth
*Il Berlione*, *In 453 minutes infernal cooking*
Eclectic fusion with ethnic Japanese touches. Occasional startling
moments of complexity.
Quite difficult, thick, innovative multi-instrument music with
Birdsongs of the Mesozoic
*Fossil Record*, *Dancing On A'A*
*Songs for Ships and Irons*
The word "quirky" was invented for them.
Very lush and modern symphonic. English vocals.
Deus ex Machina
Sound like a 1990s Area. Superb vocals.
Atmospheric gothic soundtrack collage.
*Suspension and Displacement*, *Reflections From the Firepool*
They do two very different things: poweful rock and moody
experimental electronics. *Reflections* is a mix of both.
Very complex, powerful and highly unique. Almost metal in places.
*As The World*
Song oriented, much vocals, complex.
*Path of Dreams*
Hammill influenced English vocals, metal influenced guitar.
Quite unique zeuhl rock. Reminiscent of Magma and Tipographica.
*Le Couleur De Feu*
Very symphonic instrumental four piece, complex at times.
*De Todos Uno*
Classic Italian 70's sound.
Ie Rai Shan
*Ie Rai Shan*
Lush symphonic rock, female vocalist (Japanese).
*Resistance is Useless*
Solid accessible progressive rock.
Former Zappa guitarist plays chaotic, intelligent tunes.
*Joy of the Wrecked Ship*
Unique composed instrumentals. Very challenging.
*Lonely Land*, *One Man Tells Another*
Very moody accessible 70s sound in the 90s.
*Brainstorm*, *Tragic Symphony*
Powerful guitar driven progressive rock.
*Guilty Until Proven Rich*
Challenging but accessible progressive rock.
*La Source*, *Sarabandes*
Canterbury & folk influenced, very original. Some vocals.
Some similarities to Univers Zero with jazz seasoning.
*Distractions On The Way To The Kings Party*
Multi-guitar based rock with reed & horn section.
Nurse With Wound
*Thunder Perfect Mind*, *Rock 'n' Roll Station*
Premier experimentalists. Can be very difficult and powerful.
Like instrumental Hillage era Gong.
*Les Elephants Carilloneurs*, *Nord*
Fripp influenced guitar trio, but better compositions than C.G.T or
*Junta*, *A Picture of Nectar*
Mixes many musical styles into an original, virtuosic whole.
*The Sky Moves Sideways*
Neo-psych with Pink Floyd touches.
Similar to It's A Beautiful Day, Renaissance, female vocals.
*In This Life*
Brilliant extended songs with unique rock twist.
Intelligent, complex virtuosity with jazz touches. Incredible.
RIO - extended songs
Long, eclectic extended songs. "The closest thing to Henry Cow in
complexity ... world class playing & singing ... there is nothing
else like this now." -Chris Cutler.
Ambient/Rock - very diverse
Combines symphonic progressive & folkier elements in a fresh way.
*On the Way*, *Seconde Era*
Rock with fascinating zeuhl influence.
RIO/Rock - extended songs
Very different, original rock with much experimentalism. A highly
regarded modern classic.
The following people have contributed to making this file what it
Mailing Lists Through Email/Internet
A mailing list is a group of users with a special interest topic that
unites them via email. Any mail sent to the list address is
"exploded" by being sent to everyone on the subscription list. The
lists can reach up to hundreds or thousands of people with mutual
interests. Lists are generally available as normal (separate mail for
each post) or digest format.
Some lists are moderated: the moderator may request that a post be
edited or may refuse to post it if the content considered off the
topic of the list or possibly even offensive. This may sound
restrictive, but in reality there are few situations where post
content is censored or edited. One example is a list where discussion
of trading bootlegs is forbidden by the management of the site that
"owns" the mailing list. There is no guarantee of "free speech" on
computer networks as there also is the implicit assumption that
anything you email or post may be read by many people. Most people
are not very concerned about this, but public discussions of
potentially illegal actions such as trading tapes, bootlegs or
otherwise is at your own risk and should probably be undertaken with
some discretion. In theory, mailing lists can reach a lot of people
who have email but cannot get Internet news. Mailing lists tend to
have less usless posts and flames because of a smaller, more focused
For solo and related acts, discussions might take place on related
lists (for example, Fish might be discussed on the Marillion list,
and Brand X on the Genesis list, Bruford, Levin and Belew on the King
Crimson list, Bruford on the Yes list, in fact Bruford on just about
any list: there is a theory, "The Bruford Connectivity Hypothesis",
that Bill Bruford can be connected to anybody in the music business
by no more than two steps, where a step is defined as "having worked
with". There is a stronger hypothesis "The Special Bruford
Connectivity Hypothesis" that extends this by saying that the
connection can be made to anyone on the planet in no more than three
steps. Ergo, Bill Bruford is the social epicentre of the human race.
Quite frightening really.
Most mailing lists have a "-request" or administrative address for
subscriptions and unsubscriptions. Save the introduction to any list
to which you subscribe or keep track of the administration address
when you want to unsubscribe. Many people post subscribe and
unsubscribe messages to the list mailer addresses, unwittingly
sending them to up to hundreds of other subscribers. Some list
administrators do not regularly read the mailing list posts or have
automated the subscription process, so use the administration address
for the appropriate requests. Listserv or Bitnet mailing lists
typically have a listserv@ address you should use instead of a
"-request" format address. Some of the smaller, digested lists use no
administrative address and all mail is sent to one address.
There is no guarantee that these addresses are correct. What you see
below is, to the best of my knowledge, the most recent address of the
mailing list. If the address is incorrect, please let me know. If
you are a moderator of a prog mailing list, please contact me with
updates if and when your address changes.
This daily digest was developed as a result of the interest in Dream
Theater by musicians subscribed to the Ytsejam digest. Our goal is to
network the musicians across the world who are interested in
Progressive rock and metal music. We believe by doing this we can
share ideas, experiences and plans for our individual efforts and
thereby make it more accessible to a mainstream audience. This music
deserves to be heard by more people AND better promoted by the
industry. We hope that through our collective efforts this will
eventually happen. THE WHOLE IS GREATER THAN THE SUM OF ITS PARTS!
The progmaestros mailing list can be joined by doing the following:
Send the following e-mail to progmaestr...@arastar.com
Subject should be "asdf". Text should read exactly:
subscribe progmaestros firstname lastname
(replace the names with your own.) You will be added automatically!
Ytsejam, the Dream Theater mailing list concerns itself with Dream
Theater past, present, and future. To subscribe make this the body
of your mail:
subscribe ytsejam "Your Name"
mcm...@cs.unca.edu (Scott McMahan)
Send a message with `HELP' in the body for details on how to use
the server to subscribe. (This is *totally* automated!)
G. J. Goldwyn runs the Gentle Giant mailing (on-reflection) list on
the Internet. Current membership >150 and growing. A digest form is
To subscribe, send e-mail to
containing the single line
Gibraltar (Progressive Rock)
g...@mailhost.tcs.tulane.edu (Mike Taylor)
The list covers general and obscure Progressive Rock topics like
rec.music.progressive and has a very useful archive server.
Backissues and related files are available via anonymous ftp in the
music directories at ftp.uwp.edu: Alternatively, they also reside
at <URL:ftp://prog.ari.net/pub/music/prog/Gibraltar.> There's a
very outdated topical index of the issues of the digest which is
useful for finding references to specific bands in back issues.
The ph7 mailing list concerns itself with the music and writings of
Peter Hammill and related bands such as Van Der Graaf Generator.
Recent discussions have included comments on Random Hold, Fripp, The
Long Goodbye and Peter Hammill's two books of lyrics, poems, and
short stories. To subscribe, send a mail body of:
subscribe ph7 "Your Name"
Talk focuses around the two primary bands, but discussions have
included the Ozric Tentacles and Eloy, plus Hawkwind offshoot bands
and other `space-rock' bands.
A digested list that discusses Allan's music and session work.
Also included is discussion of related bands such as Jadis,
Niadem's Ghost and the Lens, as well as to a smaller degree, lesser
known bands on the English club/prog scene.
King Crimson, Robert Fripp and related artists
to...@cs.man.ac.uk (Toby Howard)
This is the "Elephant Talk" digest (previously called "Discipline".
Archives at <URL:ftp://ftp.uwp.edu/> with discography(ies?) also.
The freaks mailing list is the oldest of the arastar.com: progressive
rock mailing lists. It deals with Marillion, Fish, and other related
bands. To subscribe, send mail body of:
subscribe freaks "Your Name"
To subscribe send
in the body of a message to the admin address
Web site at
ftp archive at
To subscribe send mail to the server (echo...@fawnya.tcs.com) with
Subscription: add echoes or Subscription: add-digest echoes
You can mail to echoes-...@fawnya.tcs.com to susbcribe manually.
Archive server has lists of rare releases, huge FAQ, interviews etc.
You can get info on how to use the server to retrieve files, reviews
of rarities discs and interviews and other info by sending mail to
the echoserv address with the text body:
Send "subscribe post-classical" in the *body* of the mail or
"subscribe post-classical-digest" for the digest format. From the
admin information regarding which bands might typicallybe discussed
on the list:
Shinjuku Thief, In The Nursery, Art Zoyd, Univers Zero, Daniel Denis,
Pete Namlook, Peter Frohmader, Graeme Revell, Laibach, Autopsia,
Mynox Layh, Frame/Cut/Frame, Edgar Varese, John Cage, Karlheinz
Stockhousen, Michael Nyman, Steve Reich, Harry Partch, Morton
Feldman, Mossolov and Iannis Xenakis.
queensry...@pilot.njin.net (Shag Aristotelis)
Weekly digest, express (news-only) edition available. FTP
archives. To subscribe, send mail containing your first name,
`subscribe' and which edition you want, to the request address.
pc...@sseyod.demon.co.uk (Pete Cole)
Door X - the David Torn mailing list. Current membership 100, and
growing ... including DT himself! To join, e-mail
pc...@sseyod.demon.co.uk with a subject of SUBSCRIBE DOORX
Related to Triumvirat, Juergen Fritz and Helmut Koellen.
Yes and Anderson-Bruford-Wakeman-Howe related. Newsletter: `Notes
From The Edge'.
NFTE Server (lyrics, backissues, discography, rarities, surveys,
GIFs): Automated. For help send mail with subject line "send main
help" to yes-a...@meiko.com
This list is for discussion of the composer/musician/producer John
Zorn, and everything he has been part of. (i.e. Naked City, Praxis,
Pain Killer, etc...)
The primary FTP site for progressive music related information is:
The directories include: articles, concert reviews, discographies,
interviews, Gibraltar backissues, album reviews, and much more,
including the latest version of these FAQs.
The administrator of the site is Adam Levin and you can reach him at
ale...@ari.net if you have comments, questions, or submissions. Note
that this is a moderated site - you cannot just put files there.
Most of the musical discographies, lyrics, interviews and other
information can be found at:
This site also has a number of mailing list archives and other
information but is not devoted to progressive music and has little
information about more obscure artists.
There also is an ftp site dedicated to ambient and related musics
It is a repository of information about all types of ambient music,
from Eno's "pure" form to droning guitar/psych rock. It also has a
Newsgroups Dedicated to Bands
There are Usenet groups solely dedicated to particular progressive
bands. Below is a selection to give you an idea of the naming
Dream Theater (alt.music.dream-theater)
Bela Fleck (alt.music.bela-fleck)
Peter Gabriel (alt.music.peter-gabriel)
Peter Hammill (alt.fan.peter.hammill)
Jethro Tull (alt.music.jethro-tull)
Moody Blues (alt.music.moody-blues)
Pink Floyd (alt.music.pink-floyd)
Todd Rundgren (alt.music.todd-rundgren)
While mentioning these bands in r.m.p is fine, long, drawn-out
discussions of their music should be kept to the appropriate
FTP Via Email
Some sites have no ftp access, or have ftp access that is limited to
local or regional sites. Fortunately, you can access many FTP sites
If you ca not FTP from your site, use one of the following
For complete instructions, send a message reading "help" to the
server. Note that the word "help" must appear in the body of the
message, not just on the subject line.
This section merely provides pointers to central repositories of
information wherin you will find endless numbers of other links.
Keeping lists of all relevant links is simply not possible in a
The *GEPR* (see FAQ 4 and FAQ 7) is now properly on-line at its new
home in the US. There are currently two mirrors, one in Europe and
another in the US. Choose the site nearest to you for the fastest
Home site (maintained by Mike Taylor)
UK mirror (maintained by Phil Kime)
US mirror (maintained by Adam Levin)
Adam Levin also currently runs the progressive music home page that
contains a lot of interesting information including links to other
places. This can be reached at:
This site also maintains a page of links to Web pages detailing many
(some quite obscure) progressive artists. You can even access music
of various lesser known bands. Rather than duplicate all the links
here, you can find them on these pages.
The premier progressive music mailing list, Gibraltar now has a Web
Also, perhaps you would like to look at the Triad Radio Web pages at
"Triad was a progressive, free-form, innovative radio program that
aired in Chicago on WXFM-FM between 1969 and 1977. There was a lot of
interesting music that went out over the air-waves of Triad on
WXFM-FM 105.9 in the early 70's." (from the Triad Web page).
Henry Potts now maintains the alt.music.yesFAQs online at
iRock is probably the most exciting prog site on the net for new
progressive music. There are two new iRock shows a week that are
listenable via audio streaming technology from VocalTec. With their
new player client, Internet Wave, one can hear excellent progressive
rock directly off the net if you have a 28.8 connection and TCP/IP.
iRock is now the first Internet Music Radio Station licensed to play
copyright music on the net by ASCAP and BMI. Take a look and listen
to iRock at: