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 70s prog bands in the 80s 

Which prog band lost it the most in the 1980s?
Pink Floyd 9%  9%  [ 1 ]
Genesis 73%  73%  [ 8 ]
Yes 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
King Crimson 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Jethro Tull 9%  9%  [ 1 ]
Hawkwind 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Rush 9%  9%  [ 1 ]
Other [please specify] 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Total votes : 11

 70s prog bands in the 80s 
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Space Ranger
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Post 70s prog bands in the 80s
Although Jethro Tull made some bizarre albums when the 80s dawned, I'm still going to have to go for Genesis and their shameless chasing of the ££££. They should have just changed the band name after 1978.

[ELP aren't in this poll because they didn't release an album in the 80s, being on hiatus from 79-92. I'm not really counting Emerson Lake and Powell's effort.]


Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:14 am
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Storm Trooper
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
The first few Genesis albums of the 80's were ok, but after that they were appalling.

Rush don't deserve to be in here, nor do King Crimson. Hawkwind aren't really a "prog" band for me.

The Yes albums of the era don't appeal to me, nor do the Floyd ones. But they weren't nearly as bad as Genesis after 82.

Genesis it is.


Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:24 am
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
Wretch, Rush made some pretty substandard albums in the 80's.

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Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:27 am
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
The first 3 of the decade were brilliant, and I've always been fond of Hold Your Fire.

Grace Under Pressure has grown on me, which only leaves Power Windows and Presto that I'm not a fan of. And they aren't even that bad.


Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:31 am
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Space Ranger
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
Interesting idea for a thread, not familiar with the 80s output of any of the big prog bands.


Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:59 am
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
They all went varying degrees of shit (Hold Your Fire is a disgrace), but obviously Genesis took the biggest biscuit. The only 70s rock band who adapted seamlessly to 80s pop were Queen.

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Thu Sep 26, 2013 12:00 pm
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
80's Queen wasn't a patch on 70's Queen though.


They released far better albums than Genesis in the 80's of course.

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Thu Sep 26, 2013 12:04 pm
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Space Ranger
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
I thought Crimson were OK in the 80s?


Thu Sep 26, 2013 12:05 pm
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
i have no problem with any of the later Genesis work ,


Thu Sep 26, 2013 12:07 pm
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
they got off to a great start with 'Discipline' but 'Three Of A Perfect Pair' was pretty ordinary from memory. not shit though

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Thu Sep 26, 2013 12:07 pm
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Space Ranger
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
I always find it fascinating how 70s bands in general coped with the 80s. I get the impression from a lot of them or their members - Tull, Rush, the ex-Zeppelin members, Iommi post Born Again - that they're suddenly struggling to stay relevant and with a couple of exceptions the way a lot of 70s bands looked and sounded in the 80s feels forced to me, unless they took a break beforehand [Deep Purple] or were just completely in their own groove anyway [AC/DC]. Queen had some dodgy moments [Hot Space sounds gash from what I've heard of it] but they pulled off the shift pretty smoothly compared to Tull for example, who seemed to lose their minds with Under Wraps.

I find it somewhat disquieting. Those bands in the 70s were on top of their game, breaking boundaries, creating wonderful timeless music with seemingly no effort at all. Yet then the 80s come along and all these groups who in 1971 or so seemed immortal now suddenly are struggling with new sounds, in some cases desperate to be seen to be 'up to date' as they'd been on the cutting edge a decade before - and usually it just sounds so forced and wrong in some way.

Looking at pictures of someone like Robert Plant in the 80s, he doesn't seem to be at ease, something feels wrong. Compare to pics of him in 72/73 when he seems to be a god amongst mortals, creating stuff and showing the way. I guess it disturbs me that people can get caught on the hop like that, no matter how brilliant their creativity was before or how masterful they seemed, and that they'd once sounded at the cutting edge but then were struggling to keep up with new sounds.

I just keep thinking 'surely a band who could do this progression seamlessly in the 70s should have no problem regardless of the era, and their natural talent and creative response should always ensure that they'd never struggle sonically?'

Maybe I can't phrase that right. A good example would be Rush - Moving Pictures and especially the song Tom Sawyer are great examples of how to be a 70s band and yet seamlessly move with the times, incorporating new technology and sonics into the band's sound. Yet when I saw a couple of videos from the Power Windows/Hold Your Fire era I was actually shocked at how 'lost' the band seemed in a sea of 80s technology - it seemed to be mastering them....

Interestingly when the 90s came along a lot of those 70s bands stopped trying so hard and started making good records again, and in the promo shots they seem to look more at ease and less caught out.


Last edited by Cosmic Equilibrium on Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Thu Sep 26, 2013 12:56 pm
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Space Ranger
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
Crimson were pretty much a new band by 1981, returning from hiatus, so I suppose they couldn't be said to have 'lost' it I guess.

I'd like to make a documentary interviewing the 70s prog bands and asking them how they coped with the 80s and why they made the mistakes they did, or what they think went right and what didn't. Mind you when it came to Genesis I'd probably just start insulting Phil Collins for desecrating the band name.


Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:00 pm
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
Cosmic Equilibrium wrote:
he seems to be a god amongst mortals


No.


Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:03 pm
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Space Ranger
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
The Wretch wrote:
Cosmic Equilibrium wrote:
he seems to be a god amongst mortals


No.


Not literally, but it's just how it can seem sometimes to me.


Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:10 pm
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Space Ranger
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
Astro Black wrote:
Crimson had it a little easier though. They were ALWAYS about breaking ground and doing new things, and their audience loved them for it. Genesis, not so much.


Makes sense, yeah.

Is Discipline worth getting? I don't know any Crimson post 1973-ish


Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:11 pm
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
Astro Black wrote:
Crimson had it a little easier though. They were ALWAYS about breaking ground and doing new things, and their audience loved them for it. Genesis, not so much.


Doesn't mean everything they tried was good though.

I found Crimson's attempts at quasi-accessible material unconvincing personally. and i'm definitely not alone in that.

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Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:13 pm
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
Part of the problem was that in the 80s, the rock vanguard of the 60s and 70s were hitting 40, which in rock and pop terms was properly ancient. By the mid-80s Kerrang was full of sniggers and sneers at the expense of faded old farts and dinosaurs. That doesn't happen any more, now we all cherish the grandfatherly pioneers and respect them for rocking into their 60s, but Robert Plant and Lemmy faced jokes about retirement homes barely out of their 30s. Another part of the problem was that the decade was so stylistically tyrannical - so lots of old hippies felt the need to cut their unfashionable long hair and get a hairsprayed bouffant and swivel about in drainpipes and shoulder pads, which just made them look more ridiculous and desperate.

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Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:38 pm
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
^^Yes, but at the time the 80's was probably the last decade where a whole heap of 40 something year old musos had massive hits. It was a real comeback decade for many artists.

It really depended on what market you were aiming for. It has been argued that the reason Dio found it so difficult to maintain his popularity throughout the 80's is because he was already well into his 40's and had zero sex appeal, thus making it difficult for him to compete against all the pretty hair metal boys in their 20's, but a balding 30 something Phil Collins, who looked like he was pushing 40 in 1984 at the age of 33, was one of the decade's biggest artists, and had no problem competing against artists that were 10-14 years his junior.

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Last edited by Stat_Rad on Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:48 pm, edited 3 times in total.



Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:43 pm
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Space Ranger
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
Chantler wrote:
Part of the problem was that in the 80s, the rock vanguard of the 60s and 70s were hitting 40, which in rock and pop terms was properly ancient. By the mid-80s Kerrang was full of sniggers and sneers at the expense of faded old farts and dinosaurs. That doesn't happen any more, now we all cherish the grandfatherly pioneers and respect them for rocking into their 60s, but Robert Plant and Lemmy faced jokes about retirement homes barely out of their 30s. Another part of the problem was that the decade was so stylistically tyrannical - so lots of old hippies felt the need to cut their unfashionable long hair and get a hairsprayed bouffant and swivel about in drainpipes and shoulder pads, which just made them look more ridiculous and desperate.


Yeah I hadn't considered the 'young man's game' ideology rock music can have. The fashion point is pertinent too.


Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:46 pm
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Post Re: 70s prog bands in the 80s
Astro Black wrote:
Apart from the obvious teenage-dope-smoking phase I never got into Pink Floyd past their "classics", so can't really comment on their 80's output.

GENESIS - I prefer the PG material by far, but Duke has it's moments and Invisible Touch is a straight up 5/5. Aside from those, not for me.

YES - I like most of Yes' albums. The only 80's record that lets the side down slightly is Union. Solid fucking rock.

KING CRIMSON - No arguments, really. Discipline, Three Of A Perfect Pair and Beat - 15/15. Awesome.

RUSH - Their 80's output is some of my favourite music, as I've stated many times on here.

JETHRO TULL - Again, not as familiar as I am with Yes or Rush, but Crest Of A Knave is a bloody good album and the only 80's Tull album I'm familiar with really.

Great thread!!!


This is pretty much bang-on where I come from. Although I rarely bother much with Floyd from Wish You Were Here onwards, I'm quite a fan of A Momentary Lapse of Reason, part of this of course is it reminds me of a time and a place.

I don't think I'll ever accept Hawkwind as a prog band, there's not much at all wrong with Levitation, Church of Hawkwind and The Xenon Codex.

As for '80s Crimson, the three albums Discipline, Beat and TOAPP all push boundaries and I view these albums as the band's second 'holy trinity', the first of course being LTIA, SABB and Red. Red may even be my favourite album of all time.

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Miranda looks like someone's wacky auntie who always has a gin bottle in her handbag for emergencies/brightening up her day.

I thought she looked like the head of the English department at a high school, though perhaps that says more about the school I went to than her..


Thu Sep 26, 2013 4:40 pm
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