A mainstay in the progressive scene, Steve Hillage's earliest work goes back to the Middle Earth club in the late 60s with Arzachel, playing alongside bands like Pink Floyd and Tomorrow. After a break to attend University, Hillage returned to music, first returning (ever so briefly) with Dave Stewart for the eponymous Kahn album before joining Kevin Ayers' Decadence. From there, he would spend the next three years in the classic Gong trilogy line-up where he would meet future partner Miquette Giraudy.
Led by Ian Anderson, Jethro Tull was the first group from the progressive era to score resounding chart success. Originally their music was based in rhythm and blues, but punctuated with Anderson's flute playing and larger-than-life stage persona. By Thick As A Brick, the band would provide the ultimate concept album: one song spread over both sides of the album, housed in a newspaper-facsimile record jacket. By the mid-70s, the bands work become more formulaic, but fan favorites were just around the corner, as the folk-roots of Songs For The Wood would attest.