Credit: Emperor Norton
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Credit: Emperor Norton
In the year 2017, five sonically inclined youths set out on a familiar quest: to make loud noises together. When the sounds they made turned out pretty alright, they made it official.
The five became known as Emperor Norton and, dictionary in hand, laboured in search of the perfect adjective for their soundcraft. 'Original' wasn't very original. 'Astro Jazz' had unwanted connotations of flat caps and spoken word poetry. It was then that Emperor Norton came across the word 'Progressive', and so endeavoured to find an exemplar… Upon sighting a trio of sackcloth-wearing pessimists playing a single didgeridoo backwards in 5/4 over a drone of screaming trees, they decided that this wasn't really what the group was about.
Yet still they searched; later, they chanced upon a gaggle of Lethargians – sometimes called a “slump” – who were all dressed exactly the same. Emperor Norton watched them awhile, as they marched without moving anywhere, chanting nonsense platitudes that all ended in words that rhyme with “you”, and waving the banners of "Pop" and “Alternative” aloft. To the side of the droning drones, they spied a loner cut from a different jib and begowned in different cloth; Emperor Norton finally saw their calling, thinking that if their collective sound could be at least a place of respite for the deserters of that perfumed rabble, then that's something, right?
Emperor Norton promptly donned the musical cummerbund of “Prog” and added “Rock” to sound cutting edge. The very next day, the group discovered - to its astonishment - that it had unwittingly declared allegiance to an underground resistance movement of cape-laden keyboard wizards, fiery plectrum wranglers and lead singers who speaketh like Shakespeare.
Emperor Norton felt right at home.
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On a less oddball note, we take after the likes of Oldfield, Yes, Gentle Giant and pretty much all of the old prog greats - but we're very conscious not to just retread the path of our influences. To us, prog as a genre should be exactly that - progressive. We want to go wherever the music leads us - there will be times where we sound like a metal band, times when we get jazzy, times when we verge on pop, but the core of our sound will always come from our shared desire to improve ourselves as musicians, and to really contribute something new to our genre.