Top Ten Best Progressive Rock Songs


The Top TenXW

1Supper's Ready - Genesis

Aw man, can't be beat. Pink Floyd is great, although I would have chosen something other than SOYCD, perhaps Astronomy Domine or Careful With That Axe, Eugene? But Supper's Ready is the cream of the crop, a near perfect prog rock epic.

Man! I love Shine On You Crazy Diamond so much, but Supper' Ready is not only the best progressive rock song of all time, it's also the best song of all time. The only reason this song isn't as popular as Bohemian Rhapsody or Stairway To Heaven is because it's 22 minutes long, and people can hardly listen to a song for more than five minutes. Nevertheless, us progressive rock fans know the greatness of this song. And come to think of it, it's better this way, because it makes it more special, more unique when less people know the existence of this epic masterpiece.

I can listen to only this song and it never gets boring/old to me! This is the most addicting song ever! The song, which involves more talent than any other song!

Genesis sometimes don't get enough love. All of them amazing talents, just an EPIC masterpiece.

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2Shine on You Crazy Diamond (Part VI-IX) - Pink Floyd

I love Supper's Ready by Genesis. It's defiantly one of my favorite songs of all time. I'm gonna vote for Shine On You Crazy Diamond, though. Pink Floyd is my favorite band and they make my favorite music. Shine On You Crazy Diamond is a masterpiece as well as 2112 from Rush, The Knife, Supper's Ready and the Musical Box by Genesis, Roundabout by Yes, Close To The Edge also by Yes, Passage To Bangkok and Twilight Zone by Rush, a long list of songs by Pink Floyd progressive rock is defiantly my favorite genre. It takes true talent to make progressive rock and true taste to listen to it. 21st Century Schizoid Man is another great progressive rock song.

No doubt about this, this song takes you for a ride, changing your mood over and over makes you think strange and experience a different dimension.

There's only one other song that can come close to its caliber, "careful with that axe eugene"

I love this song, whenever I hear it, I became a part of it and I just flying away from this world. Excellent, truelly amazing. The best progressive band should make a great song, and they've done it pretty well. I love Shine On You Crazy Diamond. I love Pink Floyd.

This song is just so relaxing, so mood changing, and just amazing. Suppers ready is real prime too. But if it were up to me, I would put Dogs in there instead of Shine on You Crazy Diamond, because Dogs is great.

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32112 - Rush

You know the real reason this song is not number 1 is because nobody knows who rush is. People do not pay much attention to canadian bands. It is kind of sad actually. But this song has the most amazing lyrics and I love Geddy's bass in the temples of syrinx. Amazing musical masterpeice. Rush is the most underrated band there is to date. Rolling stone gives rush 2/5 stars on almost every album. I hope whoever is reading this does not like rolling stone. Or the hall of fame voters. Ha ha ha.

Perhaps one of the best and most diverse songs ever written, lyrically, and musically this song is flawless, unrivaled in creativity, those who don't like this song have brains that can't handle the epicness

I remember when I was in 7th grade back in 1977 hearing this song for the first time and I was blown away [ to the year 2112]! I have listened to this song countless times since along with all of RUSH's other music. 2112 is an original masterpiece of art with an excellent story being told! Highly recommended!

The link between Led Zeppelin / Cream and Pink Floyd.

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4Close to the Edge - Yes

Close to the Edge is a masterpiece. Shine on you crazy diamond is vastly overrated. It's cool but mostly consists of the band jamming. Supper's Ready is a lot better but Close to the Edge is on a whole other level. All the instruments are equal in a perfect mix and nothing really stands out except the music itself. The abstract lyrics are an instrument themselves and when you listen to the piece you feel like LIVING. The different sections of the song cover a spectrum of different moods ranging from mayhem, melancholy, chilling, yearning, rage, mysterious, happy and serene. This song, if any, is made of pure awesome. - EnglandSeller

I personally think Close to the Edge should be on the top of the list with Supper's Ready close behind. This song is just a masterpiece. I think Close to the Edge is the best progressive rock album ever and is certainly Yes at their highest creative and talented peak. Shine on is good and I like Pink Floyd and they're one of my favorite bands but they are overrated. I'm not the biggest Rush fan and 2112 is good but when I want to listen to prog, Yes is always my first choice.

To me, it doesn't matter what order all these songs come in: each one is a masterpiece. However, Close to the Edge is more than just a masterpiece. This song is how I, a man with no religion but himself, have come to experience God (and no, I'm not literally claiming to have talked to a bearded man in the sky). The perfect storm of musicality, spirituality, and emotion, these 18 minutes laid out by Yes are the closest to the edge of perfection any song will ever reach.

Even though this song is about 19 minutes long, it's actually accessible. Unlike their later songs, which are great but plagued by excess, this song just feels like it was exactly right. When I hear it, everything feels like it's exactly the way it should be, and that there's the right amount of everything. - Raa396

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5Echoes - Pink Floyd

Live at Pompeii will get you appreciating this song a lot.

Not just best progressive song ever (just slightly ahead of Supper's Ready in my opinion), it is possibly the best song ever.

Very deep and probably the best song ever made. I think I beats the rest of the songs in this list because it is more simple, does not have a long opera like story nor the exaggerations of the other good prog songs like big solos or massive notes per second even comparing to other Pink Floyd songs.

This is one of the finest songs in Progressive Rock. Perfect 23 minutes. Don't understand why this isn't higher on the list.

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6Starless - King Crimson

I always feel this is a song about being depressed The song can take you to hell and back. Yet at the end it lifts you up, leaving you ahead again and seeing the beauty of it all.

To quote Pitchfork (because it is so well put): ""Starless" feels like a summation of all King Crimson had accomplished to that point. Through its strictly controlled verses, hackle-raising crescendo and wild freak-out coda, the band wrings moments of startling beauty and exuberant energy from the dread and dissonance at the song's core."

Artist: King Crimson
Album: Red (a must have)

The most epic, technically dazzling song you have never heard. The last 2 minutes still give me chills and always leaves me scratching my head, wondering how did anyone come up with this? Robert Fripp did, and he always will. Long Live The King - dasilvan2000

This song has the depth and psychedelia of any 20 minute long prog song but at the same time the "obvious" and simple melodies that will make you love it immediately. There's no struggle at the beginning when listening to this song yet you will never grow tired of it because of it's incredible depth.

It's kind of the perfect song considering that.

Sun down, dazzling day... - IronSabbathPriest

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7Octavarium - Dream Theater

This is the very best song to listen to 1 000 000 0000 000 times, because you will never get bored no matter what! This song got everything that a song needs to be perfect, plus everything else the dream theater can come up with, we are talking about getting chilled to the bone, amazed of amazing guitar solos and riffs, and the very best harmony of any song EVER! LISTEN TO IT OR BE A BRICK. - mariuzmu00e6lum

This song is purely amazing, however, if I was stating my absolute favorite songs, Echoes and Dogs would be higher. So why did I vote for Octavarium? This is about best prog songs, not including psychedelic, and Octavarium definitely has an edge on them.

Different moods to take us to a journey of life, complexity and length what prog song needs. And last but not least it is presented to us by the most talented band of our time.

The best song of all time without a doubt

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821st Century Schizoid Man - King Crimson

This song is a great example of progressive rock at its best, by the band who helped to jumpstart the genre. The lyrics are relevant, Robert Fripp is great and the music is a genius arrangement.

Very antagonistic lyrics with absolutely amazing instrumental section in the middle. One of my favorites.

I love this song so much. The sax and the guitar are amazing. But I like Epitaph better.

I am a 21st Century Schizoid Man. - Pony

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9Roundabout - Yes

Best intro of any song ever created. Also, stunning bass riff...

They always play this last at every Yes concert - Sabbath

Actually they play Starship Trooper at the end of every Yes concert.

Better than shine on your crazy diamond

10Thick As a Brick, Pt. 1 - Jethro Tull

The greatest song ever written! I am a huge prog rock fan and I know all of these songs, but none of them can ever touch THICK AS A BRICK, which is 45 minute long masterpiece and which incorporated 4 (! ) music genres! Again-- the greatest song ever written!

What a great song the complexity of the magnificent lyrics are truly mind altering.. I have listened to the album over 100 times never gets old like a great movie. Thank you Ian.

This as a Brick is the greatest song ever written! People just need to be smart enough to understand this masterpiece!

One of the pillars of Prog-rock!

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The Newcomers

?Cygnus X-1 Book I: The Voyage - Rush

Its One Of The Best Rush Songs Ever Written

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The Contenders

11Dogs - Pink Floyd

This is an amazing. It's not only one of the best Pink Floyd songs but one of the best in the world. I seriously think this song is vastly underrated.

A lengthy masterpiece which puts you into a different world, and it has really had an impact on the way I look at society. Clever lyrics, a brilliant multitude of guitar solos and simply an interesting atmosphere. Possibly best Pink Floyd song.

I listened to this song a couple of days ago, actually. Long but great song. - Pony

Best Pink Floyd song

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12Comfortably Numb - Pink Floyd

This is the best song of all time, but guys, come on, this isn't Prog!

Best Floyd song isn't even in top 10? Are You joking? No Way. Hey Floyd fans keep pushin' to put this higher up!

While it's not as "progressive" as other songs in this list, it's absolutely fantastic. - PetSounds

Awesome song deserves to be way further up

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13Pull Me Under - Dream Theater

A great song, but honestly probably the worst song off Images and Words. Learning to Live deserves this spot.

I listen to this song everyday. This song is nice example for progressive music and also the best from Dream Theater. I could listen the intro for rest of my life..

This song is pulled me into Dream Theater and prog world.
One of the greatest songs! - tomislav95

Learning to Live is better than Pull Me Under.

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14The Gates of Delirium - Yes

The most beautiful, dynamic masterpiece ever made on this planet. I've never listened to a song that could astound me as much as the Gates of Delirium. There is so much skill, technique, complexity, insane writing skills, and most of all emotion in this song. If you have not heard it you must give it a full listen. Note that this song may be too much to handle for inexperienced listeners/musicians. - cheese_face

15Firth of Fifth - Genesis

Songs ain't got to be 20 min to be the best it just needs to amazing especially the piano organs guitar and vocals

Over 40 yrs old and still progressive. Just beautiful, magical music. Always will be. Timeless.

16Shine on You Crazy Diamond (Parts I-V) - Pink Floyd

Those four notes... Nothing in the world can beat them.

Sexiest guitar ever, beautiful song.

Why is Part 1 so far below part 2? Few epics I have ever heard in my life are as good as SOYCD overall, and it's because nothing compares to the opening eight minute instrumental passage. It is moving, it is peaceful, it is trippy, and it is even terrifying, plus the sax solo at the end is gorgeous.

It is the sexiest guitar ever.

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17A Day In the Life - The Beatles

... Is this song even PROG? - Pony

Come on. I love this song--probably my #3 Beatles song. But it's not prog. - PetSounds

18Time - Pink Floyd

Wow! Beautiful list with wonderful songs! And wonderful artists! But personally I love "Time" because of many things: after listening this song, I wanted to play guitar (Gilmour is just great! ), and the lyrics remind me my parents who don't want me to do what I really want... And Mason is brilliant in the introduction!

One of my favorites... No doubt! This song completes the whole album concept, in which you hear the perception of time from the point of view of any given person, who once is young, but realizes that time flies away one day... Excellent and very recommendable!
Long life to Pink Floyd!

Its just a classic deserves a spot in top 5.

One of my favorites... - Pony

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19The Musical Box - Genesis

A genuine prog-rock masterpiece. The genius of this song can not be expressed in words. It's as close to magic as you're ever gonna get without LSD or other psychedelics.

Pure joy to listen with its mood changes, great singing and amazing guitar and keyboard atmosphere. Orgasmic! Thank you Genesis for this Chef d'oeuvre :-)

20Tarkus - Emerson, Lake & Palmer

You really understand how difficult and complex is Tarkus when you try to play it. It has many tempo changes and its structure is very atypical. 'enough said.

A complete masterpiece if you haven't heard it you don't know progressive rock or rock in general it is an amazing musical achievement!

Brilliant and complex, Tarkus spins a melodic tale that captivates the listener as no other.

It is a true masterpiece. Only played by three people, but it covers so many parts that are crucial to the song's complexity. People need to listen to this now.

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List StatsUpdated 13 Oct 2015

3,000 votes
153 listings
7 years, 16 days old

Top Remixes (7)

1. Supper's Ready - Genesis
2. Pull Me Under - Dream Theater
3. Shine on You Crazy Diamond (Part VI-IX) - Pink Floyd
1. Roundabout - Yes
2. Close to the Edge - Yes
3. Shine on You Crazy Diamond (Parts I-V) - Pink Floyd
1. Octavarium - Dream Theater
2. Supper's Ready - Genesis
3. Echoes - Pink Floyd

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