Essential Prog Rock

WRITTEN BY
Will Hermes

Blame it all on Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band,when the Beatles decided that neoclassical arrangements,psychotropic drugs, and vague, album-long story lines made for goodrock. It did, but they couldn't have foreseen the excess thatfollowed. Now, with the Neptunes' Chad Hugo name-droppingRush, it seems like a good time for a beginner's guide tothis enchanted world of bewigged weirdness.

THE MOODY BLUES DAYS OF FUTURE PASSED(DERAM/DECCA, 1967; 1997) What began as a recording session for a rockversion of Dvorak's Symphony No. 9 produced prog's biggest hit, "Nightsin White Satin" -- now playing in a Victoria's Secret near you. The LPalso made a prog signature of the Mellotron, a primitivetape-loop-triggering keyboard that tripsters still covet.

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