David Fricke on 2017's Best Prog Reissues

Can's complete singles, a massive King Crimson box and more

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Art Zoyd, 'Live and Unreleased Works'
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Art Zoyd, 'Live and Unreleased Works'

Formed in Valenciennes, France, in 1969, Art Zoyd were wide of the mainstream from the start, then went further out – dropping rock instrumentation (guitars, drumming) and songwriting conventions; fusing chamber music, electronic advance and a leftist-political edge as a member of the prog alliance Rock in Opposition; finding composing and conceptual vigor in soundtracks, ballets and film scores. Art Zoyd's official discography is big enough for a vault-like box of its own. Live and Unreleased is an invigorating immersion in their parallel history of live, TV and radio recordings across 12 CDs and two DVDs. The earliest performances, from the late Seventies, are a fury of experiment and avant-rock drive descended from the British inspiration of King Crimson and Henry Cow. More recent work, including a full 2015 concert retrospective on one DVD, documents Art Zoyd's unbroken pursuit of a new modernism beholden to no genre, still a rock in opposition. 

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