Since 2012, progressive rock fans have been able to participate in the Progressive Music Awards, which are sponsored by Prog Magazine. We are big fans of all the pageantry and revelry that comes with an award show, and so we decided to put together the first annual Proglodytes Music Awards. Most awards shows have standard categories, but here at Proglodytes, we decided to recognize our favorite musicians for less conventional achievements. Ladies and gentleman….THE PROGLODYTES MUSIC AWARDS 2017!
The Rick Wakeman Golden Cape and Sweats Award for best dressed: NAD SYLVAN!
Nad Sylvan was a shoo-in for this. Calling himself The Vampirate? I mean, too easy. Just do a quick Google Image search of Nad Sylvan and you will see that Nad can do no wrong.
Best Use of a Rainforest Animal In a Prog Song: THE NEAL MORSE BAND!
I know this is what you were gunning for when you wrote this song, Neal. You were trying to help us understand the plight of the majestic mossy furball that is the sloth. On behalf of all sloths in the world, we salute you, Neal Morse Band.
The ‘BE’ Award for Most Pretentious and Convoluted Album Concept: DREAM THEATER- THE ASTONISHING!!!!
OK. So it’s the future, and there’s like, this country, that’s like, the US, but kinda Hunger Games-ish? And the emporer, he’s a real asshole, right? And his name just happens to be Emporer….Nafaryus (Oh, by the way, people really like the letter Y in the future). Because he’s, you know… Anyway, there’s this dude with a magical voice, and robots who fly around, and….What, you don’t follow? You must not be reading The Astonishing User Manual. Having said all that- props for doing something a little crazy. The same ambition and spirit that made Journey to the Center of the Earth and Six Wives of Henry VIII also made King Arthur On Ice.
The Mike Portnoy Award for Quote Most Taken Out of Context: ROBERT JEAN GODFREY!
Prog press can be pretty sensationalist. A one hour interview full of insight and nuance can be reduced to a “quotable” soundbite pretty easily (ask Mike Portnoy about this- he could rip a fart in a restaurant and Blabbermouth would do a 4 part article about it). Last year, the prog press did this to the legendary Robert John Godfrey of The Enid, when he said: “Musos were always a problem… But it wasn’t a big problem because they were always overshadowed by the truly creative, truly progressive bands of their day.” This was presented as this big anti-modern prog rant, when in reality he was just talking about technical proficiency getting in the way of songwriting, which we all know does happen.
The Jon Anderson Award for Most Impenetrably Bizarre Lyrical Passage: THE TEA CLUB- “DR. ABRAHAM”!!!!!
“To remove, reforge/ To rebuild and restore /From the vessels of life /To the mortal pangs /With the sweep of a scythe/ I’ve redressed you of life /That peculiar reflex toward infirmity/ My palatial operating table/ A perfected device/ I have crafted you/ Lamination brought ahabitation/ Never walk again with the mortal pangs.”
The Tea Club is very good at writing quirky, unusual, and somewhat obtuse lyrics. Their latest album, Grappling, is full of them. The main difference between this passage and anything Jon Anderson wrote, however, is there is a solid narrative behind each song, which is further explained in the comic book series. “Dr. Abraham” specifically features all sorts of weird, surrealist imagery, including (but not limited to): bastards, wenches, Maestro Arachnids, demonopathy, and lots and lots of lamination? Now that is PROG. LAMINATION! LAMINATION! LAMI-NATIIOOOON!
(p.s.- for the longest time, I thought the word “palatial” was “fellatio” in this song. More like Dr. Phil, amiright?)
The Daniel Gildenlow Award for Most Annoyingly Sexy Prog Person: DEVIN TOWNSEND!
Devin Townsend is so effortlessly beautiful. Whether he is taking pictures of his shoes while he is taking a dump, or making amazingly metal faces while he is onstage, Devin’s tremendous beauty is impossible to capture in a paragraph. So here’s another picture:
Runners up: Craig Blundell, Marco Glühmann. If only they’d do bathroom selfies, they’d be in the next issue of Playgirl, I assure you all.
The Steve Hackett Award for Most Unchanged Hairstyle: STEVE HACKETT alone deserves this award.
This can only go to Steve Hackett. The sun rises and sets, seasons change, nations rise and fall. Genesis may have turned from a brilliant, cutting edge band in the 60s and 70s into a cheesy dad-rock band in the 80s. All things shall perish from under the sky. But Steve Hackett’s beautiful hair helmet remains unchanged. May it remain that way forever.
The Two Acts Most Like Your Divorced Parents award goes to : Yes and Yes ft. ARW!!!!!
Seeing Yes and Yes ft. ARW on stage for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame made us all feel like we were in The Parent Trap, except we have, like, 20 very talented dads that just can’t stand to all be in the same room. Seconds after the performance ended, both bands hit Twitter immediately to make sure everyone knew that there was no hope in another Union-like tour.
Honorable mention: Threshold and Damian Wilson. In the words of Iris Hidding, “Whhhyyyyyy???”
The Kate Bush Best Dancing to Prog Award goes to: TIE BETWEEN LESLIE HUNT (District 97) and SALVATORE MARRANO (Thank You Scientist)!!!!
District 97 should merge with Thank You Scientist, and call themselves Dank You Scienty Seven, and the entire show could have some pretty dank choreography. If you didn’t know, “dank” is young people talk for “cool”. Or “life is meaningless”. I haven’t figured it out yet. But, in all seriousness, much like Queen Kate, these two are great vocalists, and their movements and enthusiasm definitely enhance the live experience. So keep on dancing, you two!
The Magma Award (for most likely to alienate you from your significant other): KAYO DOT!!!!!
Deciding to take on Toby Driver’s Kayo Dot is sort of like deciding to binge watch all of Game of Thrones in a week. Or deciding one day to read Ulysses. There is so much music, and it’s denser than a neutron star. You know it’s absolutely brilliant, and you know it would bless your life tremendously to become familiar with it, but lets face it: you can barely take care of a houseplant, let alone take on Kayo Dot’s discography. But it’s OK. We understand.
The Tired of Myself Award (for most depressing prog album): Ironically, ANATHEMA- THE OPTIMIST!!!
This lovely group of folks, on the heels of winning an ACTUAL award, were easy choices for the “Tired of Myself” award, because we can always count on them to write music that makes us want to drown ourselves in the bathtub, but “in a good way”. Their latest album, The Optimist, is a lovely, atmospheric, powerful musical statement, and they deserve some props.
This concludes the Proglodytes Music Awards 2017. What write in awards would you all like to add?