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Porcupine Tree - Recordings CD (album) cover

RECORDINGS

Porcupine Tree

 

Heavy Prog

4.17 | 287 ratings

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Finnforest
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars A loose ends collection worth owning

Coming from someone rarely impressed by loose ends collections, Wilson exceeds expectations with this one. PT's "Recordings" assembles material recorded in the Stupid Dream/Lightbulb Sun era, rejected not because they are weak but because Wilson felt they didn't quite fit the make-up of the finished albums. This album serves as a great companion piece to the two proper albums, almost like a sibling, but Recordings is allowed to be a bit looser and free spirited than the other two were. "Buying New Soul" and the long version of "Even Less" comprise 25 minutes of pure top-grade PT, nothing secondary about them. "Access Denied" brings you back to the psych-pop of the first album but with better production. The middle of the album is impressively substantive with a much spacier and more distant eeriness that recalls their mid 90s word, lots of heavy jamming (Ambulance Chasing) balanced with slow, stoned vibed softer sections with acoustic guitars, piano, and Wilson's hazy voice. There's some great stuff in these five middle tracks that just ooze mood, melancholy, distance. He lets them go and really stretch out moreso than the structured songs with choruses, the results are still vital and emotional, while long they do not sound bloated or overdone. The album closes with the ethereal post-rock guitar of "Oceans Have No Memory", a sonic daydream that ends too soon. I really enjoy this stuff more than some of the later monster releases like Deadwing and In Absentia.

Housed in a booklet styled digipak, the 2010 reissue features good sound and nice photos but lacks the insightful commentary SW has written for other releases. This is a very good release which provides a missing link from Signify to Lightbulb Sun, and should be a must-have for fans of that particular period. 3.75 stars to be exact.

Finnforest | 4/5 |

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