Top 30 Progressive Rock Concept Albums by Prog Sphere

Top 30 Progressive Rock Concept Albums
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Progressive rock, as a genre, has over the course of time produced tons of great concept albums. Probably the best definition of what a concept album is comes from Wikipedia, where it’s said that a concept album is a studio album where all musical or lyrical ideas contribute to a single overall theme or unified story.

Prog Sphere made a selection of top 30 concept progressive rock albums that we consider are the best what the genre offered so far. Let us know what are your choices in the comments below.

Top 30 Progressive Rock Concept Albums by Prog Sphere

30. Sylvan – Posthumous Silence (2006)

The subject of Posthumous Silence – a father reads the diary of his apparently dead daughter and learns for the first time about her desperation – as well as the complexity of the compositions could by all means have scared potential listeners off. Instead, the music as well as the story manages to enthrall the audience instantly and to touch everybody in a unique way.

29. Neal Morse – Sola Scriptura (2007)

2007′s studio album by Neal Morse is a concept album about the life of the German theologian Martin Luther.

28. Le Orme – Felona e Sorona (1973)

Le Orme‘s fourth studio offering is a concept album pivoting on the story of two planets which revolve one around the other, without ever coming in contact. While Felona is shiny and flourishing, Sorona is dark and home to plagues and catastrophes: however, in the second part of the suite, the fate of the two planets is inverted.

27. Porcupine Tree – Fear of a Blank Planet (2007)

The concept of Porcupine Tree‘s 2007 album was heavily influenced by a novel Lunar Park, written by Bret Easton Ellis. The novel is told from the perspective of a father, who bears the name of the novel’s author himself, whereas the album is mostly from his son’s perspective, an eleven-year-old kid named Robby. Many of the lyrics for Fear of a Blank Planet are lifted directly from the novel, particularly My Ashes, which is a homage to the last chapter, in which the ashes of Bret’s father are scattered and cover the memories of his life.

26. Spock’s Beard – Snow (2002)

A double-CD concept album, Snow explores similar ground to classic concept albums like The Who‘s Tommy and The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway by Genesis.

25. Electric Light Orchestra – Eldorado (1974)

The plot of ELO‘s 1974 full-length follows a Walter Mitty-like character who journeys into fantasy worlds via dreams, to escape the disillusionment of his mundane reality. Jeff Lynne began to write the album in response to criticisms from his father, a classical music lover, who said that Electric Light Orchestra‘s repertoire “had no tune”.

24. Kayak – Merlin – Bard of the Unseen (2003)

Merlin – Bard Of The Unseen is a record that takes inspiration from Kayak‘s 1981 record titled Merlin.

23. Haken – Visions (2011)

The whole album is based around the story of a young boy who sees his own death in his dreams and believes it’s going to happen and spends the rest of his life trying to avoid it.

22. Rick Wakeman – Journey to the Centre of the Earth (1974)

The concept of Rick Wakeman‘s sophomore solo album is based on Jules Verne‘s eponymous science fiction novel, which tells the story of Professor Lidenbrok, his nephew Axel, and their guide Hans, who follow a passage to the Earth’s centre originally discovered by Arne Saknussemm, an Icelandic alchemist. Wakeman performs with the London Symphony Orchestra, the English Chamber Choir, and a group of hand-picked musicians for his band which later became The English Rock Ensemble. Actor David Hemmings provided the narration to the story.

21. Beardfish – Sleeping in Traffic Part 1, Part 2 (2007-2008)

The concept behind Sleeping In Traffic albums lyrically conveys 24 hours in a person’s life. Musically this progressive quartet love the 70’s movement, be it Frank Zappa, Gentle Giant, Genesis or even more conventional pop such as Elton John.

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  1. Warren Greveson

    July 14, 2014 at 1:38 pm

    Personally I think this would be in the top 5 but I’m biased!

  2. Bart

    August 5, 2014 at 6:44 pm

    What happened to Marillion’s Brave? Beautiful conceptalbum, based on an article in a journal about a girl that jumped from a bridge. It came with a movie. Last year Marillion celebrated this album with an intgral show on their biannual Marillion Weekend (available on DVD/BlueRay).

  3. Jack Del Rey

    October 27, 2014 at 6:27 pm

    You forgot Celestina I, II & III by 17 Pygmies!

  4. Peter Bunce

    December 21, 2014 at 9:08 pm

    I am only on page 1 (Sylvan) Wow! stunning…

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