From my time in 'King Crimson,' I'd describe a Progressive band as one that keeps trying to break musical barriers, and keeps trying to do new music.
Like most musicians, I'm good at becoming immersed in the music that I am currently working on. We seldom lift up our heads to contemplate even the music we will be doing in the future, let alone what we've done in the past.
I'm in that comfortable niche where I'm not that famous and sometimes people do need to put a barrier between them and their followers. When you're real famous you need to do that but I'm not that famous so I don't need that kind of barrier.
Yes, alas, I've been on some recording sessions where the music wasn't good. Not so many, really, considering how many I've done. It's a very awkward situation because to do a recording well you focus on the positive of what will make the piece better.