Most of you probably know "The 101 rules of Black Metal" and the diversions as "50 rules of hardcore", "100 rules of True Metal", 101 rules of Extreme Metal" and so on.
I actually (and finally) found: "The 101 Rules of Prog Metal"!!!
The 101 Rules of Progressive Metal
1. Insist that your definition of prog metal is sacred and that the only
progressive bands are the one you deem to be so.
2. Accuse anyone who disagrees with you regarding rule 1 of lacking
musical intelligence and not being a true prog fan.
3. Have contempt for mainstream music.
4. Insist that most people listen not to the music, not to the lyrics
but only the chorus and that is why prog metal is not mainstream.
5. Accuse anyone who disagrees with you regarding rule 4 of lacking
musical intelligence and not being a true prog fan.
6. When showcasing a new prog metal band to a non-musician friend, put
on the most technically difficult song, and skip directly to the solo part.
7. If your friend says that it is cool, tell him that he has grasped the
grandeur of prog and shown that his intelligence is superior to that of
the mainstream sheep
8. If he doesn`t, accuse him of lacking musical intelligence and not
being a true prog fan.
9. Renounce all contact with friend in rule 8. Racial purity isn`t all bad.
10. Make sure your drummer has a double bass pedal.
11. If he hasn`t, kick him out and get another one who has. Single pedal
is NOT prog.
12. Own every side-project a member of Dream Theater has been involved
in. Listen to approximately none of them regularly.
13. When a mainstream fool asks you what prog metal is, tell him
something along the lines of "prog is the evolution of musical
expression and experimentalism in rock". In any case, make sure that the
person in question is left with no idea of what prog metal is. He
wouldn`t have understood anyway.
14. Insist that music should always progress, although as long as you
write an album in the prog vein, you don't necessarily have to.
15. Accuse anyone who disagrees with you regarding rule 14 of lacking
musical intelligence and not being a true prog fan.
16. Refer to progressive metal as intelligent music for intelligent
people, preferably at every occasion where a mainstream group or genre
17. Note that the above does not qualify as arrogance any more than
pointing out that wine is drink for the more sophisticated.
18. A song under four minutes is NOT prog. If you are stuck with a song
under four minutes, insert a phrygian solo trade-off between the
guitarist and keyboardist as long as needed.
19. If a mainstream fool tells you that shredders are mindless wankers,
tell him that "at least they can tune their guitars, har har", and walk
20. Spocks Beard is NOT prog. If anyone disagrees, kill them.
21. Humming along with the melody to a prog metal song is forbidden.
Burn all albums you own with hum-along melodies.
22. Loathe all music you used to like before you got into prog. This is
not optional. When asked why, tell people that "I am into GOOD music
now, why would I go back?".
23. Accuse any prog metal musician that cuts his hair of selling out.
24. Often state that you don't only listen to prog. Jazz is a good choice.
25. Yeah...like you have more than 3 jazz CDs in your collection...
26. Never accept ANY Berklee graduates. The drop-outs are so much better.
27. Riffs in 4/4 are not progressive. If you happen to come up with a
cool riff in 4/4, alternate between 4/4 and progressive time signatures
like 7/8 every other measure to ensure the musical complexity synonymous
with prog metal.
28. Be able to mention 20 bands noone has heard of, not even true prog
fans. Own no releases of these bands.
29. Get an Ibanez. This is not negotiable.
30. Spend 5 hours every day critiquing other musicians on forums.
31. Spend 5 minutes every other day actually practicing your instrument.
32. Yell at people who headbang at concerts: They`re not prog enough to
get the music, what do they expect?
33. Sus4 is your friend. To ensure that your album is a true progressive
release, include at least one part where the keyboard plays ascending
sus4 chords over a single-note broken rhythm in 7/8.
34. Make sure your bandname is either a
b)Some geeky sounding name ripped from some obscure book.
c)Random combination of at least 2 three-syllable words.
-Eternal Twilight Tranquility(Can`t get much progger than that) -Redolent Arithmetic -Evolution of Vernacular Domesticated
35. Don`t worry about if your band name makes any sense or not. Since
90% of your fanbase is from Brazil and Japan, you can safely ignore
conventional English grammar and instead focus on what`s really
important: The lyrics(see rule 36).
36. Write deep and ambiguous lyrics.
37. If unable to write deep and ambigous lyrics, include at least one of
the following phrases to ensure recognition as lyrical genius in prog
"I`m staring towards ascension divine, caught in my own revelation, a
nightly mystery of soulburning apparition"
"Mornings` gentle caress, a ray of sunlight enveloping the spirit of the
"A timid, palatable genocide, turn towards the decline of mankind, the
festering wound of ages past changes into the soul-spirit of vestigial
38. Use a non-standard instrument like violin, saxophone or kazoo,
regardless of how idiosyncratic it turns out to be. This constitutes
39. Make sure your bass-player has as many strings as possible. Don`t
worry if he uses approximately three of the 11 strings on his custom
Carvin 30 kg bass regularly, just give him a bass solo in the middle of
your mandatory instrumental tune(more on that later)where he can really
show the extent of his instruments capabilities. Imagine the range of
scales on an instrument like that!
40. Release a live-album called "Live in Tokyo".
41. Change time signatures. Constantly.
42. Accuse anyone who does not do so of lacking musical intelligence and
not being a true progressive musician.
43. Your amp MUST be a Mesa Boogie. If a friend of yours tries to
convince you're wrong and you should check out his Marshall tell him
that his tone is thin and buzzy.
44. State that Metallica can't properly tweak the boogies. They're so...
45. Start a Dream Theater cover band with friends just starting out
playing instruments. Spend half of the rehearsal talking shit about punk
bands and how people don`t understand your music.
46. Play a shitty version of a humongously difficult DT song at a Battle
of the Bands-type contest. Metropolis Part 1 or Dance of Eternity are
both good choices, as is Erotomania.
47. When your band ends up last, shift all blame over to the judges;
hey, they have no idea what good music is! Why else would they let that
boring pop band win?
48. Talking about starting playing an instrument; always start with the
most technically difficult song you know. Remember, this is a testament
to your immense talent, so be sure to mention this on every internet
community you happen to frequent.
49. When are you able to play something at half speed very sloppy,
proudly state that you "nail" the song in question.
50. People are bound to ask for a recording of the feat mentioned in
rule 49. However, you are not able to provide it to them, because a)
your recording equipment got dissolved by digestive acid yesterday,
b)you don`t need to prove anything to people. Your word should be good
enough c) you don`t know anything about computers(even though you sit by
one most of the day), as you spend most of your day practicing your
51. Tool is NOT prog. If anyone insists they are, kill them.
52. Hate Falling into Infinity. If the feeling that you actually enjoy
FII(even the "proggier" songs like TOT)sneaks up on you during a glitch
of concentration, remind yourself that DT sold out.
53. Actually, state that DT sold out on every good occasion. This means
every time their name is mentioned.
54. Don't be John Arch. Insist that any pre-Alder Fates is 100% not prog.
55. Do not move on stage. Don`t under any circumstances forget that
nobody at prog concerts pays attention to the audience, including the band.
56. The best songs are those that are over 15 minutes, have multiple
named sections, and have solos by everyone in the band INCLUDING the
57. Accuse anyone who disagrees with you regarding rule 56 of lacking
musical inteli...Yeah, you`ve got it now, haven`t you?
58. Never ever under any circumstances say "Six Degrees Of Inner
59. Never let anyone tell you that Dave Weckl is better than any prog
metal drummer. If they still insist, don`t kill them, but rather put on
the Mike Portnoy drum solo from 1993`s "Live in Tokyo" vid, which still
today is the benchmark for good drumming, REGARDLESS of genre.
60. It would still be a good idea to have that gun ready, though.
61. Drummers: Huge kits are MANDATORY!!!! If all you have is a 4-piece
with 3 crappy cymbals, then you don't belong on stage. A 5-piece single
bass drum kit is the bare minimum and even that's on the edges of bare
bones. If you have a tiny kit BUY MORE DRUMS AND CYMBALS!!!!!!!
62. No, 6 toms is not enough, MORE DRUMS AND CYMBALS!!!!
63. Reform with old members and release an album intended to make up for
years of bad reception from fans (see Yes) or claim your next album will
be a return to past glory (see Queensryche). If it flops, be sure to
blame a producer or record company.
64. When someone asks you why prog metal isn`t more popular if it is so
darned good, tell them that it is because "it is over the mainstream
65. Talent = Technical skill. Hail any band with lightning-speed solos
for their immense talent.
66. Publicly state that your band is non-religious, then make many
religious and/or spiritual allusions in the lyrics.
67. Stress your openmindedness. State that you like all forms of music,
except lower forms of music like pop, rock `n roll, blues, techno,
68. Accuse fans of the aforementioned genres of not being openminded.
69. Get a Kurzweil. As the undisputed <<>> plays it,
you have no choice but to get one yourself, no matter what synthezisers
you actually like. ALL BOW TO THE MIGHTY 88-KEY <<>> KURZWEIL!!!
70. ALL GLORY TO THE HYPNO-KURZWEIL!!!!(Futuruma fans will know what I`m
71. Show off with your equipment. Show off with your playing/singing.
Show off with your *ahem* length. Show off with your girlfriend. Show
off with anything you can think of. Show off with your DOG for god's sake.
72. Get a dog.
73. Play air-drums or air-guitar at concerts. This will make sure that
other prog fans recognize your immense talent.
74. Stuck in song-writing? Insert a part with a slow single-note gallop
rhythm where the singer yells "ENTER THE SUUUNNNNNNNN" several times.
75. Note that you can substitute "ENTER THE SUUUNNNNNNNNN" for either of
the following: "FATHER, MY ADOLESCENCY IS AGONNNNNYYYYYYY" or "THE
APPARITION DIVIIIIIINNNNEEEE". All three are suitable choices.
76. What do you mean, you haven`t trigged your bassdrum?
77. Remember, faster=more progressive. Slow songs cannot be progressive,
best example would be Pink Floyd.
78. If anyone says PF are prog, kindly refer them to rule 1 while you
prepare to do a "Varg", so to say.
79. During recording, make sure that you accuse the producer, the
recording engineer and half of your band of not playing the song
properly at least once.
80. Make sure your album cover contains either a psychedelic
computer-drawn image, a lavish painting with mythological figures, or is
illustrated by Travis Smith.
81. Write epics.
82. In case you didn`t know, epics must be about adolescency, concerning
a legend, or a deep dystopian tale where a cheesy fictional
city/world/pizza shop serves as a metaphor for this world.
83. Have racks with loads of equipment.
84. Have racks without equipment. Who is going to see them if you don`t
85. No intro for your song? Insert a single-note broken rhythm accented
on the snare, with shifting keyboard chords underneath.
86. Refuse to lend prog CDs to mainstream friends. When asked why, tell
him/her that (s)he "will understand when (s)he matures"
87. When playing ANY gig, from the lowliest bar to the most gargantuan
arena, be sure that no member of the audience will leave without having
heard every lick you are able to play.
88. Have at least 5 solo spots during a concert.
89. In case you have forgotten while reading this, prog metal is
intelligent music for intelligent people.
90. No, Marillion is not prog. I kindly refer you to rule 20.
92. Buy new albums from past prog-greats.
93. When they turn out to be crap and nothing like the old albums, hit
yourself in the head with a hammer until you like them.
94. Hold that there is no bad prog, only DIFFERENT.
95. Of course, that only applies to bands you like. See Rule 1.
96. In case you wondered, Dream Theater is and will always be the
benchmark for prog metal. The more something sounds like Images and
Words, the more progressive it is.
97. Proclaim Rule 96 to people with a straight face in all seriousness.
This is not optional.
98. Have side-projects. Make sure that all side-projects consist of
pointless jamming over endless repetitions of clicheed riffs.
99. Make sure that at least one of your side-projects feature Mike
Portnoy on drums.
100. If you cannot get Mike Portnoy, get someone who sounds like him.
101. You mean you have been reading this when you could have been
practicing along to Metropolis Part II or composing a sidelong epic? For