Mammals’s Top 25 In-Betweener Albums, #15-#11

Continuing my selection of albums that bridge the blurred gap between metal and prog. Some of these albums are labelled as metal, some as prog, but all of them could be both.

#15: Subsignal (Germany), neo-progressive rock
Album: Beautiful & Monstrous
Song: Paradigm

Subsignal is a spin-off from the German prog metal band Sieges Even. Subsignal has more or less taken over from Sieges Even, but with a broader and more purely prog-based approach. Even so, they should please fans of gentler prog metal. This was their first of three albums. Their most recent album, Paraiso, was released this year.


#14: Star One (Netherlands), progressive metal
Album: Space Metal
Song: High Moon

As one of Arjen Anthony Lucassen’s many excellent projects, Star One is prog metal. Well, primarily prog metal. The extensive use of keyboards makes this a very proggy album. So does the typically Arjen space / science fiction theme. Some prog space rock albums are heavier than Space Metal – the earlier Hawkwind releases, for instance.


#13: The 3rd And The Mortal (Norway), experimental/art rock
Album: Tears Laid In Earth
Song: Death Hymn

This Norwegian band is difficult to classify. It started as a doom metal band, then began to experiment with more and more other types of music. This is one of their earlier, more metal albums. Later albums became progressively more prog. One of my favourite modern dark metal bands, Agalloch from the USA, names The 3rd And the Mortal as a primary influence.


#12: Steven Wilson (England), melancholy prog
Album: Insurgentes
Song: Harmony Korine

Wilson has never called himself a metal musician. He doesn’t like labels, but has said he writes and plays prog. There was nothing metal about his early compositions, which were mostly psychedelic and space rock. His best-known band, Porcupine Tree, is almost always listed as heavy prog, not prog metal. So are his other projects. What all of his stunning music has in common with this album, however, is that it draws fans of avant-garde music from both camps, metal and prog.


#11: Airbag (Norway), neo-progressive / heavy prog
Album: Identity
Song: No Escape

With three studio albums to their credit, Airbag are becoming recognised as the worthy successors to Porcupine Tree. This is from their first album, still my favourite. There is more of a prog metal flavour to their 2013 album, The Greatest Show On Earth. All of their work has been consistently splendid. They too have won fans on prog sides of the fuzzy metal-prog border.

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About ChristopherMammal

I've made it to Mammal. I still hope to be classified as Human one day. Meanwhile I have evolved enough to recognise different types of music as well as the shrieks of certain vervet monkeys who are known for their scurrilous behaviour in the proximity of unguarded bananas.

Posted on December 5, 2013, in Mammal's Top 25 In-Betweener Albums and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. I’m having a really good time listening through these songs, even though the only one of these I like enough to listen to again is Airbag (really good one!). Which is okay, since I’m mainly interested in these posts to gain more knowledge about prog, not to find new bands to like (which will inevitably happen anyway). I absolutely adore Porcupine Tree, but for some reason Steven Wilson’s solo stuff has never managed to excite me much, I guess it’s too spacey or something. It kind of bothers me, haha. His videos are great though 🙂

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