The list author says: "Many musical artists have been inspired to create albums based on their favourite fantasy literature, often accompanied by stunning album artwork. This is a selection, some based on familiar and lesser known classics, and some formed as entitities in their own right, but still literature, albeit in musical form."
"Sparkling, lively and bright-sounding project adapting Lewis Carroll's inventive rhyme into a full length fantasy song cycle. With a range of characters voiced by various male and female guests, a strong story direction and double keyboards plus band, this is rich and enjoyable."
"Full of darkness and musical texture, this object-lesson in how to make a great concept album adapts a number of Edgar Allen Poe's stories in various ways, instrumentally or using accomplished guest vocalists. This classic album comes in two versions - the original and the 1987 remix (with additions) - and both have plenty to offer. The Deluxe edition contains both with bonuses."
"For a long time unavailable, this has finally been rereleased as a CD/DVD concert package. Mike Batt's musical masterpiece does full justice to the Lewis Carroll nonsense epic, with stellar vocal and musical guests and an extraordinary orchestra meets band arrangement. A classic!"
"Recent reissue of this evocative musical project by Roger Glover, with abundant guests cast as the small animal denizens of its picture book inspiration. Again, orchestra with rock band working beautifully, conjuring real magic in its portrayal of these small, lively characters. Includes the animated clip for "Love is All.""
"A cycle of folksongs by two Steeleye Span members, featuring different singers in character, and narrated by Christopher Lee. Inspired by Lord Dunsany's classic fantasy novel, this captures its sense of magic in conflict with the ordinary. The Edsel CD of the album is out of print but Second Battle have recently rereleased it."
"The duo of Par Lindh (keyboards/drums) and Bjorn Johansson (guitars/bass), along with female vocal and flute/oboe additions take an enjoyable, at times Mike Oldfieldish, roam through Tolkien's "The Hobbit." Ranging mostly between folk and progressive rock, this album effectively captures the flow of this tale."
"A sweeping epic fantasy album from David Arkenstone, collaborating with Mercedes Lackey on the story in the accompanying booklet (there's also a map). One of Arkenstone's finest, the moods of different territories and adventures are well conveyed through his rich, varied instrumentation, along with three vocal tracks."
"Telling the tale of the voyages of Ulysses, composer Michael Rapp and band A-440, with powerful vocalists - Ted Neeley, Yvonne Iverson and others - adopt a progressive rock style with tinges of disco, as befitted 1978. A fantastic musical journey, compelling all the way through, recently officially rereleased on CD. The correct subtitle is "The Greek Suite.""
"As bizarre as its subject matter, Michael Mantler's spin on Edward Gorey's darkly humorous books is dischordant, unsettling, raucous and dissonant. Delivered in a jazz progressive style by a team of excellent musicians including Carla Bley, fronted by the tremulous vocals of Canterbury hero, Robert Wyatt."
"The tale of Scheherazade forms the concept half of this accomplished album from Renaissance, with fine performances from the whole band, particularly the featured piano parts, and fronted by Annie Haslam, plus orchestra. You don't have to love progressive rock to enjoy this, though there's plenty of substance here for proggers as well - excellent!"
"Full progressive rock musical adaptation of the story of Merlin, by Dutch band Kayak, with vocals in English from various guest vocalists. The emphasis is on the characters of Merlin, Morgana, Mordred and Lancelot, with inspiration seemingly having come from Mary Stewart's Arthurian books. A powerful telling of this tale in song."
"Primarily an instrumental suite of Celtic/New Age sounding pieces, this album features the large harmonic range of classical music. A real sense of Faerie mythology pervades these compositions, akin to some Mike Oldfield (an unlisted guest?) and Jade Warrior, who Newman produced. Magical, beautiful, eerie and downright unsettling in places!"
"The picaresque adventures of Victor, following his beginnings in the circus to his travels across the world, presented as a long suite for rock band and orchestra. Possibly comparable only to APP's "Tales of Mystery and Imagination" this album uses orchestra like few others, fronted by alternating powerful vocals and stretches of driving rock. Rigoni and Schoenherz's moving musical epic."
"Remarkable synthesis of music/art, by Dave Greenslade/Patrick Woodroffe. CD reissue has clean remastering plus complete miniature reproduction of the book - the double LP/big artbook are what fans will want. The music is entirely synths/keys (some drums and distorted vocals), beautiful and drifting, and the artwork is awesome, together spinning a tale of a lost civilisation."
"Successfully and faithfully adapting Ted Hughes' classic children's book as a musical project, Townshend well captures its joy and sorrow. A quirky piece covering a range of moods, it uses the powerful voices of music legends John Lee Hooker, Nina Simone and Roger Daltrey, along with Townshend himself. A bit patchy and probably not for Who fans, but nonetheless worthwhile."
"An impressive original symphonic fantasy from the '70s, the second album for David Rohl's Mandalaband forms the beginning of a projected trilogy. Well using varied musicians and vocalists, including members of BJH (particularly Woolly Wolstenholme) and 10CC, there is an epic sweep to this Tolkien influenced work. The complete story is reproduced in the booklet."
"A complete progressive rock musical adventure by German band Grobschnitt (created by keyboard player mist) from 1977. It tells the story of the journeys of Ernie and the giant bird Maraboo through imaginary lands. This is very highly regarded progressive rock and something of a cult album. Reissue includes a fine bonus track."
"A solid progressive rock album from US band Glass Hammer in 1995, inspired by C. S. Lewis's space trilogy. Somewhat overlong and keyboard based in a Wakemanesque style, with okay vocals and accomplished musicianship, this contains some fine instrumental passages. In 1980, German band Eden also made an album based on this concept."