Prog Digest – An Xperience Column

Written by on January 3, 2024

Prog Digest – An Xperience Column – by Klyde Kadiddlehumper.

Well – here we are –


To start – here’s hoping that 2024 brings you a little respite from the day to day – filled with music and shows and hangin’ with friends and family.  The last year or so has, for many and some more than others, a royal pain.  Literally.

As a resolution – it is going to be my position that we don’t let the idiots get us down, that we revel in the good fortune of others and just have a great time.  No weight loss necessary.

That said – this month we are actually going to discuss something prog.

After a long wait, a European tour that I could not get to and the first new music in ages – December 1st was the day.

I/O was officially released and arrived on my doorstep.

This is the latest release of new music from the legend – Peter Gabriel.  And it is not simply ‘a’ release.

Doing the most prog thing ever – I/O is 3 different records.  All the same songs, but in 3 separate versions.

Let’s address that part first.

Of course, being rather obsessed with sound – Klyde decided that just one was not enough – oh no.  There is the Bright Side Mix, the Dark Side Mix (each available on both CD and Vinyl and before you ask – yes) and, in the deluxe set with 3 digital disc’s, a blu-ray disc containing Bright Side, Dark Side AND a Dolby ATMOS mix.

And each is monumental and sonically very different.  How to describe this.

The master tracks are no different – the levels, ambience and depth have been worked to evoke a very different set of emotions for each track.  It would be wrong of me to try to tell you how they hit me – mostly because each person will have a different reaction.  This certainly happened in our household.

As has always been the case with PG, he is topical, political, social and more.  If all you know of solo Peter Gabriel is Sledgehammer or Shock the Monkey (again – social stories) you are missing out.  Listen to Biko – a tour d’force.

While so many artists have watered down over a 50 plus year career – no such thing here.   Genesis was so powerful all those years ago – rich and provocative.  I/O is all that and more.  In great voice and writing at the top of his game.  It is nice to know that the Brit’s still appreciate him – this album recently went to number one on the UK charts.  I defy a US prog artist to do that here.

Of course, our local bass hero, Tony Levin is featured.  Again – if you have never had the opportunity, catch Tony locally with The Stick Men, or as a member of the fabulous Levin Brothers.  Or, King Crimson.  Or LTE (Liquid Tension Experiment), founded by Mike Portnoy and with Jason Rudess and John Petrucci.

What are you waiting for?  Phone up your local record store and see if they have it – if they don’t – have them order it for you.  Got 12”?  Have them get you one each of the mixes on those flat, black spinny things.  Got ATMOS – order the full digital setup.  We only have all 5 disc’s in the house.  You should too – it will be soooooo worth it.

Until next time.



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