What is Progressive Rock?
People have been trying to define progressive rock since the 'label' was invented. Although it's often debated and it may depend on whether you are defining progressive rock, progressive music or 'prog', here are a few resources that might help:
"Progressive rock (often shortened to "prog rock" or "prog", also called "art rock") is a form of rock music that evolved in the late-1960s and early 1970s as part of a "mostly British attempt to elevate rock music to new levels of artistic credibility."
Progressive rock bands pushed "rock's technical and compositional boundaries" by going beyond the standard rock or popular verse-chorus based song structures. Additionally, the arrangements often incorporate elements drawn from classical, jazz, and avant-garde music. Instrumental songs are more common, and songs with lyrics are sometimes conceptual, abstract, or based in fantasy. Progressive rock bands used "concept albums that made unified statements, usually telling an epic story or tackling a grand overarching theme".
Progressive rock developed from late-1960s psychedelic rock, as part of a wide-ranging tendency in rock music of this era to draw inspiration from ever more diverse influences. The term was applied to the music of bands such as King Crimson, Yes, Genesis, Pink Floyd, The Moody Blues, and Emerson, Lake and Palmer, and came into most widespread use around the mid-1970s. While progressive rock reached the peak of its popularity in the 1970s and early 1980s, neo-progressive bands have continued playing for faithful audiences in the subsequent decades."
Various styles and sub-genres within the progressive rock umbrella include: avant-progressive rock, Canterbury, Krautrock, neo-prog, zeuhl, art rock, progressive folk, progressive metal, psychedelic progressive, rock in opposition (RIO), space rock, experimental rock, and symphonic rock, among others. For an overview of the various genres, visit the Gibraltar Encyclopedia of Progressive Rock's extensive article on the subject.
Other sites you can visit for more information on progressive rock:
These are just a few but can get you started. I just say progressive rock is music that often defies boundaries and most likely doesn't get airplay on commercial radio stations! You can hear much of it at The Prog-Rock Diner though.