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Porcupine Tree - The Sky Moves Sideways  CD (album) cover

THE SKY MOVES SIDEWAYS

Porcupine Tree

 

Heavy Prog

4.10 | 970 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
4 stars Up until this album, Porcupine tree was a side project to his main group called No-Man, but apparently something was brewing in his plans. Although it's most likely that his idea to transform PT from a project to a group only materialized halfway through this album, he called his previous colleagues having worked on Up The Downstairs, PT's previous album. So whether the official formation of the group came with Sky moves Sideways or Coma Divine, nevertheless Sideways was easily the best album under that banner and would be IMHO, for some time to come. Coming with a superb and enigmatic telephone booth in the desert artwork, this album is really the start of Porcupine Tree, the previous works being relegated to foreplay.

Sonically speaking, this album has been slammed as a Floyd acetate, but this is rather unjustified if you don't mention Nektar and especially Ozric Tentacles in at least the same proportions. What is true however is that the double title track bookending this album is based on Floyd WYWH album, and the shorter (everything relative) and different-sounding tracks filling the in-betweens. The opening title track is a stupendous epic, hovering between the nightmarish Floyd, the happy-sounding Ozric and boast effects-laden vocals. Clearly the album's highlight and dwarfing the next few tracks to come. So it's not surprising that the tracks Wilson still had made in the solo mode were to come, one where he played all of the instruments himself .

So Dislocated Day is not as refined a track, where it's obvious a rum machine was used and rough guitars used to fill the space, it's nevertheless a good effort, something I wish I could say for the vacuous Moon Touches Your Shoulder, despite some interesting guitar works, which is exactly what the short Prepare Yourself : a guitar showcase. Moonloop is another heavyweight, drawing heavily on smooth gliding rework of a previous EP track Voyage 34, and it makes much more sense in this scenario than standing on its own. The closing part of the title track still can be called an epic by its length, but it lacks its counterpart's brilliance, sounds slightly more buried and less-inspired, but it remains brilliant.

Easily PT's early discography's top released (and for some time to come), this is the first glimpse of a real group, and it turns out to be quite a success.

Sean Trane | 4/5 |

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