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Porcupine Tree - Up The Downstair CD (album) cover


Porcupine Tree


Heavy Prog

3.90 | 875 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Any Colour You Like
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Following the lucid, experimental and psychedelic debut, On The Sunday of Life, Porcupine Tree's mastermind, Steven Wilson set out to create a more cohesive, flowing and melodic journey that would push the listener into the deep depths of consciousness and thought. Whilst more accessible than On The Sunday of Life, Up the Downstair was developed as a single flowing narrative, looking at issues ranging from drug use, to death, love and loss. The result is a beautifully textured, leisurely paced album accented by driving riffs, swirling keyboards and several Floydian inspired guitar solos. As with the debut, Steven Wilson composed the majority of the music, with some lyrics credited to Wilson's friend, Alan Duffy. However, unlike the debut, Wilson gained immeasurably from the input of Richard Barbieri on Keyboards/Synthesizers, and Colin Edwin on Bass, giving Up the Downstair a more controlled and focused style, whilst still maintaining the free-flowing psychedelia often found in early Porcupine Tree.

From the moment that memorable keyboard riff enters during Synesthesia, I knew that this would be a commanding listen. Tracks like Small Fish and Burning Sky only further enhance this album, powerful and emotional yet subtle. But it is Fadeaway that stands as the greatest achievement of the album. Gorgeous soundscapes combined with thought provoking lyrics helped to create a unique and lurid tone. A psychedelic poem par-excellence. I cannot stress enough how beautiful this album is. My only major criticism of the album is that it is often overly slowly paced and certain sections may seem repetitive. However if you view the album as a whole, it flows more like a suite than a collection of songs. I would also mention that there are heavy Floydian influences throughout the album, but don't let that put some of you off, Wilson still manages to create a uniquely interesting sound worthy of high praise and respect.

Completely essential. Get it now.

Any Colour You Like | 5/5 |


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