As you all happily know, Timelord has announced his top albums of 2017 already. When he did, I was a bit surprised. Wait, is it that time of year already? What about albums that come out in December? The more I thought about it, the more I thought Timelord was absolutely right to announce his top picks. Not much is going to happen this month, and, even if something does come out, it will be hard to measure against what already exists. Should something come out and shake up my list, I will, of course, be happy. For any thing that could possibly shake up this list would have to be really, really good.
And, as you also happily know, Tad Wert took a unique perspective on his top picks, focusing on the live releases of the year rather than on the studio releases. Bravo!
Unlike 2012-2016, this is the first year that I found actually easy when ranking. That is, picking and ranking has been relatively easy. As some of the other progarchists have said over the past half decade, so much prog had come out in any previous years that it felt like “taking a sip from the fire hose.”
This year, 2017, just feels different. The quality definitely outdid the quantity.
Before starting rankings, though, I would be dead wrong not to mention two critical things.
First, God bless, Jerry Ewing, and his glorious PROG magazine. For a time there, we all thought the ship was gone, our captain lost at sea in a corporate hurricane of insanity and avarice. Then, Ewing emerged—and stronger than ever. Congratulations, Jerry. Long may you lead our little platoon of prog-loving weirdos.
Second, may God bless, Tim Hall (Kaylr). I never actually met Tim, but I really appreciated his views on everything. He was always intelligent and prudent, and our loss is heaven’s gain. Tim, if you can, please say hello to Hendrix, Morrison, Emerson, Lake, Squire, and all of the other greats of the last half century. And, say hi to my dad, my grandparents, and my daughter, Cecilia Rose, as well. Someday, brother, someday. . .
On to the show!