I like a lot of recent progressive rock. I may not have delved deeply into the works of Yes or Genesis, but I enjoy a good lengthy song when I hear one. I’ve compiled a list of 5 of my favourite progressive rock songs. You might not think that they qualify as “progressive,” but that’s alright. I guarantee that they’re great.

1. “The Willing Well II: From Fear Through the Eyes of Madness” by Coheed and Cambria
I could easily fill this entire list with Coheed and Cambria tunes. Their 3rd album, the absurdly titled Good Apollo, I’m Burning Star IV, Vol 1: From Fear Through the Eyes of Madness, concludes with the four-part opus referred to as “The Willing Well.” The second part of the suite is the closest thing to a title track that this album has. The song covers a lot of ground, from bouncy pop to blazing metal, but maintains the same shuffle beat throughout. The band’s most devoted fans have spent countless hours deciphering the meaning of the lyrics, but when the music is this awesome, you won’t give a damn what Claudio Sanchez is singing about.

2. “The Canyon Behind Her” by dredg
dredg is an experimental rock band. That means that they can do pretty much whatever they want and pass it off as art. Luckily, the band doesn’t abuse that label and consistently crafts songs that are not only grand in scope, but also memorable. The concluding track to their 2nd album, El Cielo, is no exception. “The Canyon Behind Her” has a cinematic feel, leaving the listener with the sense of having travelled on an intense journey.

3. “God Rocket (Into the Heart of Las Vegas)” by I Mother Earth
On their 4th and final album, The Quicksilver Meat Dream, Canadian rockers I Mother Earth entered the world of progressive metal, adding dark industrial undertones to their spacey jam rock. “God Rocket” takes a while to build to its climax, but the pounding drum beat gives the song a sense of urgency.

4. “Start of Something Beautiful” by Porcupine Tree
I know what you’re thinking: there is a distinct lack of guitar solos on this list. That’s not by design; I just happen to be picking songs that don’t have a lot of soloing. This is the only song on the list with a guitar solo. That’s not the highlight, however. Porcupine Tree isn’t known for being the most ferocious band on the planet, but when this song’s hook returns for the third time, it packs a powerful kick.

5. “The Salesman, The Husband, The Lover” by The Receiving End of Sirens
The Receiving End of Sirens’ second album, The Earth Sings Mi Fa Mi, is a masterpiece. A concept album about misery and famine, its songs paint tales of hunger, hope, lust, and despair. This particular song’s lyrics tell a candid story about a drunken, cheating man who abandons his family. Filled with moody atmospherics, zipping electronics, distorted guitars, and overlapping vocals, “The Salesman, The Husband, The Lover” is truly a tonal treat.

As always, you might be able to find these songs on Grooveshark. Enjoy!

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