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THE SKY MOVES SIDEWAYS

Porcupine Tree

Heavy Prog


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Porcupine Tree The Sky Moves Sideways  album cover
4.08 | 998 ratings | 81 reviews | 40% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection


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Studio Album, released in 1995

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. The Sky Moves Sideways Phase One (18:37)
2. Dislocated Day (5:24)
3. The Moon Touches Your Shoulder (5:40)
4. Prepare Yourself (1:54)
5. Moonloop (17:04)
6. The Sky Moves Sideways Phase Two (16:46)

Total Time: 65:25
Also released on C+S Records (CS 8524-2) in the U.S. with the following variations : "Stars Die" replaces "Prepare Yourself", "Moonloop" is an 8m10s edit and the various sections of "The Sky Moves Sideways" are given individual subtitles.

Track Listing for 2004 Digipack Re-issue:

Disc 1 (48:31):
1. The Sky Moves Sideways - Phase 1 (18:39)
2. Dislocated Day (5:24)
3. The Moon Touches Your Shoulder (5:40)
4. Prepare Yourself (1:58)
5. The Sky Moves Sideways - Phase 2 (16:48)

Disc 2 (60:55):
1. The Sky Moves Sideways - Alternative Version (34:37)
2. Stars Die (5:01)
3. Moonloop - Improvisation (16:18)
4. Moonloop - Coda (4:52)

Total Time: 109:26

Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Steve Wilson / guitars, keyboards, programming, flute, tapes and vocals
- Richard Barbieri / synthesizers and electronics (1,6)
- Colin Edwin / bass guitar and double bass (1,5,6, Stars Die)
- Chris Maitland / drums and percussion (1,5,6, Stars Die)


with
- Rick Edwards / percussion (5, Stars Die)
- Suzanne Barbieri / vocals (6)
- Theo Travis / flute (6 - 2003 expanded edition only)
- Gavin Harrison / drums (2,3 - 2003 expanded edition only)

Releases information

Delerium CD - DELEC CD 028

Also released on C+S Records (CS 8524-2) in the U.S.

Reissue - 2CDS Snapper Music (2004) re-issue with different tracklisting - SMACD 883.

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Snow Dog for the last updates
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PORCUPINE TREE The Sky Moves Sideways ratings distribution


4.08
(998 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(40%)
40%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(43%)
43%
Good, but non-essential (13%)
13%
Collectors/fans only (3%)
3%
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)
1%

PORCUPINE TREE The Sky Moves Sideways reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by 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.

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Send comments to Sean Trane (BETA) | Report this review (#9482) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, February 24, 2004

Review by Proghead
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars While many people might have first noticed PORCUPINE TREE through the release of "In Absentia" because that CD was released on some division of Atlantic Records (not sure, as I hadn't got that one yet), I was aware of these guys since 1996, when they were recording for Delirium. I bought "The Sky Moves Sideways", not on the Delirium label, but the American version on the C&S label. I remembered this CD being described as a mellower OZRIC TENTACLES. More like PINK FLOYD (you'll notice some similarities to "Dark Side of the Moon" and "The Wall" here), but it's when they move in to more "techno-like" territory is when they start reminding me of the OZRICS. And unlike PINK FLOYD, they often explore more spacy ambient territory that's very unlike what FLOYD was known to do (after all, you'll never hear them do somthing like "Moonloop"). "I Find That I'm Not Here" is a prime example of the PINK FLOYD comparison, especially the guitar work. "Wire the Drum" is that OZRIC-style techno-like experiment I mentioned. "Spiral Circus" finds them going in to spacy ambient territory. "Stars Die" is a mainly acoustic piece that segues in to "Moonloop". "The Moon Touches Your Shoulder" is by far the most stunning acoustic piece on this album. "Is...Not" and "Off the Map" is mostly instrumental, with some themes from other parts of the album that repeats here.

PORCUPINE TREE might be Steven WILSON, but by this time, he had assembled a full band to tour, and making recording in the studio an easier task. The music here is more exporatory than the stuff they did on Snapper Music or Atlantic, and I wish for a more powerful production, but still, this is one of the better albums from the '90s I've heard.

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Send comments to Proghead (BETA) | Report this review (#9487) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, May 06, 2004

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I admire this group in their ability to produce "incredible sound" of their music. The first album that I knew this band the first time was a live album "Coma Divine". Considering it's a live performance, the sound produced is wonderful! If the live album they could produce good sound, what about this studio album? Much better!

It requires patience to enjoy this album. If I may suggest, don't try to listen to this album (first time listening) during daylight! You should start listening it in the evening around 10 pm when everybody home is asleep and use an earphone. Or you can use a stereo set, turn off the light, play it loud! You will experience something really different .. IMHO.

The intro of first track "The Sky Moves Sideways 1" consumes approximately 4:41 minutes before vocal enters nicely. In comparison of this intro, you may have completed enjoying one track of "Tom Sawyer" (RUSH) for example. So, you can imagine how long the intro is dwelling in terms of duration. But don't worry, it's a very relaxing intro. It may stimulate you with generation of great ideas to bring back to work the next day. Steve's voice enters the scene very nicely with his low and heavy voice "We lost the skyline ." (observe the sound production in this part, stunning!). I enjoy it very much. I feel like Steve's tongue is just one inch from my ears! The Floydian guitar style is excellently played here. "Ough ." I almost vomit when the track enters around minute 8:26 where the disco-like music with drum-loop and spacey keyboard dominate the background. But when the solo keyboard take the lead, followed then by percussion and guitar .. Wow!!! it's so nice. End of this long track (17 min.) is closed by an acoustic guitar.

The second track "Dislocated Day" is an upbeat track with bass dominating the play, accentuated by a nice drumming. It's an excellent track. "The Moon Touches Your Shoulder" has a nice acoustic guitar and vocal in its intro. You may observe the inclusion of sound effect in this part as well. It's a mellow and beautiful track. The guitar part is extremely Floydian. (When I'm playing this tune now, my friend who never knew this band, thought that I am playing Pink Floyd album).

The shortest track "Prepare Yourself" (1:55" minutes) is an instrumental with guitar solo that sets the tune for the next track "Moonloop", another-17 minute piece. This is another sound exploration by the band. Everything is played at the same melody at its background music. It tends to bore the listener if we only listen to the background. But, the nice thing is at the lead guitar and percussion. The album is concluded with the long track "The Sky Moves Sideways part 2". The last track is really powerful.

Overall, it's an excellent album. You may call it's derivative, as it sounds like PINK FLOYD. To me these two groups are different and I love the two both. One thing unique about PORCUPINE TREE is their passion to explore sound effects. So, I would say that this group is a SOUND EXPLORER. And the result is terrific, like this album. I wish one day this group release the SACD or DVD Audio version of this album.

What do you think? - Gatot Widayanto, Indonesia.

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Send comments to Gatot (BETA) | Report this review (#9489) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Review by chessman
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars I first heard this album about 4 or 5 years ago, borrowing the tape from a friend. I thought it was excellent, but never really went out of my way to buy the cd. Well, earlier this year, I decided to get it. To my surprise, it was a remastered version, in a slip case, with a bonus cd! So what do you get for your money? Well, The Sky Moves Sideways Phase 1 starts things off in a very Floydian way. In fact, when I took this down to a friend and we were listening to it, his wife came in and he asked her who she thought it was. She immediately said, 'Pink Floyd'. This album is strongly influenced throughout by Floyd, but that doesn't detract from the superb compositions in any way. If you had never heard Floyd, you would still enjoy this as a damn good album! Anyway, the title track is a dreamy affair to begin with, Mr Wilson doing his best Mr Gilmour impression, before it livens up and slips into a snake-like rhythm, over which the guitar soars proudly. Vocally it is more than adequate too, Wilson being in no way inferior to Gilmour in that department. At the end, a lovely combination of keyboards and acoustic guitar finishes the track nicely. Then comes what is probably my least favourite track, not that it is a bad one in any way, just maybe a tad too repetitive. Dislocated Day still has a dreamy feel, but a more insistent and jarring guitar accompanies the chorus. Next is a wonderful track, The Moon Touches Your Shoulder. Very Floydian again, with excellent, gentle guitar work echoes seductively through the first part, before it turns a little heavier and plays out with a wandering solo. The keboards,as in all the tracks here, are mainly in the background, but add to the atmosphere immenseley, creating symphonic dreamscapes as a backdrop to the vocals and guitar. Richard Barbieri is not an obvious player; he is not a Wakeman or a Banks, but he has a very effective style and knows his stuff. His playing fills out the sound and is especially gorgeous when listening through headphones. I must say here that Chris Maitland is an unsung hero on the drums, as he is integral to the sound of the band, and his occasional backing vocals add to the sound too. Colin Edwin, on bass, is controlled and skilful, and again contributes quietly to the fullness of sound that PT have. Considering this band started out as Steven Wilson's brainchild, the band are tightknit, and work wonderfully well together. Next up is Prepare Yourself, a short, guitar dominated piece that serves to lead into The Sky Moves Sideways Phase 2. This seems to roll round in your head at first, like a musical ocean before the guitar comes in with spacey atmospherics again. This is replaced in its turn by percussion and keyboards, drizzling like fine rain into your ears. As the end nears, a solid bass and drums heralds in more powerful guitar work, finally fading out to the sounds of an ocean. One's first reaction is to say 'wow' to oneself, and immediately play the thing again. This is classy, well produced prog, with no dull points, and very 70's in its approach. A modern day classic! On its own, that would make this a must-have. When you then consider the bonus disk you realise that you are only half way through a superb hallucinogenic trip, one that is an antidote to loud, fast, rock. We start off again with The Sky Moves Sideways, this time the alternate version, all in one movement. It is very similar to the original, but still worth listening to. Then comes a beautiful short song, Stars Die. Inspired by early Floyd, this has the traditional verse/chorus set up, accompanied by brilliantly understated guitar. The simple yet lush melody makes you want to play this track again and again. One of my favourites this one! Then comes a track that was on the original album, but is here relegated to the second cd - Moonloop. Another favourite of mine, the guitar and keyboards combine in a loose, almost improvised way to send your head soaring back into the cosmos. (That's if it has come down at all since beginning the first cd!) The the Moonloop coda finishes off the album in quiet, delicious style. This cd is a must have, and I for one enjoy it every time I play it. I have no hesitation in giving it 5 stars. A contender for the classic 'desert island' collection.

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Send comments to chessman (BETA) | Report this review (#9493) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, December 03, 2004

Review by Dan Bobrowski
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars If I could only keep one Porcupine Tree CD, this would be the one. Actually, I have the reissue that is two CDs and cost only a dollar more. While the tune "The Sky Moves Sideways" is in two seperate parts, combining them into one back to back journey is quite a positive aural experience. At over a half hour in length, it's quite an undertaking, but well worth the time. It's easy to lose track of time and ride the undulating waves. PT takes you through psychodelic daydreams and dance music rave-ups then traps you in a dark Floydian closet with understated vocals and pristine production.

Dislocated Day and the Moon Touches Your Shoulder could have been included on Lightbulb Sun or Signify. They are both short format, classic PT tunes. Lyrics of searching the celestial skies trying to find meaning. As a whole, the band performs at the top of their individual talents, creating a sonic jigsaw puzzle as each instrument fits into the overall picture. Steven Wilsons guitar cuts through with Gilmour like clarity, sharp and bluesy. Maitland and Edwin explore the foundation of the music, never static or dull. Barbieri's keyboard work fills up space without overwhelming the listener, very stealthy and unobtrusive.

This would be the perfect beginner CD for anyone wanting to try Porcupine Tree for the first time.

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Send comments to Dan Bobrowski (BETA) | Report this review (#9496) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, February 21, 2005

Review by Peter
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars THE SKY MOVES SIDEWAYS, a 1995 effort from English psychedelic gloom prog darlings Porcupine Tree, is not a bad album, as such, but I just can't join the virtual "love-in" for this recording that I find here. "TSMS" is my third Porcupine Tree acquisition, and I'm coming to the disappointing realization that I got into the band with an atypical album. I still really enjoy what was my first exposure to the music of band leader Steve Wilson and company: 2000's terrific LIGHTBULB SUN. Yet, where "LIGHTBULB" was diverse in its scope, with shorter, more frequently melodic songs, "SIDEWAYS" (much like its successor SIGNIFY) presents a surfeit of psychedelic "atmospherics," morose lyrics and vocals, and extended, aimless down-tempo passages that simply fail to find the pleasure center of my brain.

The disc gets off to a promising enough start: The title track opens with synth sounds that are quite reminiscent of PHAEDRA-era Tangerine Dream, before the "song" proper starts at just before the two-minute mark with some moody guitar that is VERY Floyd-like, and almost begs the unflattering appellation "rip off." Perhaps the right drugs would help, but eighteen-plus minutes of this lachrymose stuff is just too much for me. (There is a six minute up-tempo middle section which incorporates some flute and pounding percussion, but I find it to be rather formulaic and cold, and certainly nothing that makes me want to pump my fist in the air.)

"Dislocated Day" gives us a clichéd ringing telephone intro, with the accompanying treble-heavy vocal treatment that makes it sound like Wilson is singing through the phone's receiver -- as if that tired old device hasn't already been done to death! Some heavy metal-ish guitar riffs help to make this number the most interesting piece on the album, for my tastes, and at just over five minutes, it's also of an accessible length, and doesn't overstay its welcome.

"The Moon Touches Your Shoulder" has some nice, sad acoustic, and still sadder vocals that deepen the album's overall atmosphere of bleak "oh, woe is me" self pity. Why get out of bed at all?

"Prepare Yourself" is a two minute instrumental passage that presumably calls for the listener to break out the tissues and put away the sharp objects, because "The Sky Moves Sideways, Phase Two" then enters the scene, dragging its musical heels, and staring down at the floor in drugged-out despair. Some sixteen-plus minutes later, it's finally over, and, if you can somehow still summon the will to move, you may want to put on some more cheery music -- perhaps some of the Cure's slower numbers -- as you finally tackle the dirty dishes. (But be warned: they'll only get dirty again. Sigh.)

Okay, THE SKY MOVES SIDEWAYS is not really as bad as all that (I've heard that root canals can be more painful), but it doesn't do much for me. Still, if you're a confirmed fan of the band, and/or the colours black and grey, you may want to add this one to your collection. Party on, Porcupines! (Or not....)

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Send comments to Peter (BETA) | Report this review (#9503) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Review by Zitro
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars this is an excellent album with one main flaw : It may be too slow which can make it boring at some moments. This is Porcupine tree at its most spacey and has the most pink floyd influences.

1. The sky moves sideways phase one 9/10 : Shine on you Crazy Diamond II ... well, not really, but the influences drawn from that song are obvious. This is a very enjoyable mellow track with great guitar work.

2. Dislocated day 7/10 : I like this track better live. It still is a good mean rocker with an instrumental section that allows time for solos.

3. The moon touches your shoulder 8/10 : I like the live version better because of the keyboard sounds it had. Here it is guitar dominated, the climax of the song is an electric guitar solo.

4. Prepare yourself : it is an instrumental short track used as a prelude to Moonloop

5. Moonloop 6.5/10 : If you like slow ambient spacey long jam, you may love this song if you like that kind of music, but It tends to bore me a bit. The coda is legendary though, with its lead guitar riffing.

6. The sky moves sideways phase two 8/10 : This is a strong finisher of the album, but like in Wish You Were Here, it does not come close to the brilliance of Part I of the epic. This section of the epic is heavier and not as spacy as the first half. There is excellent guitar work on this piece.

Rule of Thumb : If you like Pink Floyd's spacey music, you will like this.

My Grade : B

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Send comments to Zitro (BETA) | Report this review (#41781) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, August 05, 2005

Review by frenchie
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars This album stands out really well in the PT collection. This one has the more space prog elements than alt rock sounds, and is a rather epic album with 5 long tracks (no moonloop on my version). There is a good concept here which is similar to "Wish You Were Here", having the most epic track split in half and bookending the album.

This album interested me a lot more than most of the others, yet it also has quite a lot that bores me still. The big problem with Porcupine Tree is because each album follows their own style, there has never been anything to really hook me to their sound. Steve Wilson still has immense vocals and is a good guitarist. The production on this album is well developed but it is still nothing amazing. Still, this remains a highlight in Porcupine Tree's discography.

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Send comments to frenchie (BETA) | Report this review (#52842) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, October 22, 2005

Review by Tristan Mulders
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Porcupine Tree - The Sky moves Sideways (1995 Release)

For me this is the first turning point in the career of Porcupine Tree. Before this album it was mainly a mix of psychedelica and rock, whereas 1995s The Sky moves sideways is a step forward towards the progressive rock scene.

Musically seen I've often heard people say that this is what PINK FLOYD could have sound like when they played in modern times and I certainly cannot disagree with them. A lot of guitar playing on this album is reminiscent of David Gilmour at his best. The only big difference between Porcupine Tree and Pink Floyd on this album is that the latter did not create as heavy a song such as Dislocated Day or the ending part of Moonloop. Or what about the inclusion of electronic music? Part three of the first segment of the title track, Wire the Drum is filled with electronics and flute playing.

The overall mood on this album is chilled-out and very atmospheric, but it can as said earlier on, from time to time be fairly heavy. Considering the fact that nowadays Steven Wilson is incorporating metal aspects into Porcupine Tree's music. it is a natural process so it seems.

**********

Porcupine Tree - The Sky moves Sideways (2004 Re-issue)

In 1995 British space rock band Porcupine Tree released their most Floydian work up to date: "The Sky moves sideways". This album was re-issued in 2004, nine years after its initial release.

As a bonus this re-issue features all the songs that were included on the various original releases of the album in 1995, but what's most rewarding to this re-issue is the addition of the 'alternative version' of the title track The Sky moves sideways.

This thirty-four minutes and thirty-seven seconds lasting version combines the original phase one and two of the song, but with various extra melodies and changes in the composition, which eventually were cut from the album. On this version of The Sky moves sideways, Steven Wilson sings different vocals than on the final version of The Sky moves sideways Phase 1 on the first disc. I prefer this version to the split version on the first disc, although the ambient dance segment at around eight minutes into the first part of the title track, is more upbeat and 'in the mix' in the final version of the song, than in the Alternative work-in-progress mix.

What's also new is the addition of live drumming on the Dislocated Day and The Moon touches your Shoulder songs. On the 1995 release Steven Wilson programmed all the drumming on these songs, but now fulltime band member Gavin Harrison plays the drums on these songs.

The last new feature is the addition of a few extra minutes for the improvisation that is Moonloop. I have heard the full forty minutes version of this song, but think this mix is highly recommended over the full version, simply because it seems that several parts are present here that aren't in the 40 minute unedited version (see the Transmission IV album for more details on this version).

Overall I can say that this is a worthy re-issue. Unlike the addition of a non-album track as a bonus track this band decided to simply add a second disc which fits the mood and music on the first disc. Highly recommended!

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Send comments to Tristan Mulders (BETA) | Report this review (#54383) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Review by FishyMonkey
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Porcupine Tree does their version of Wish You Were Here. With such a talent as Steve Wilson who has already rolled in Pink Floyd soundscapes for years, one would think this album would kick all sorts of ass. Well, it almost does, almost. However, sometimes, when YOU'RE supposed to get lost in the soundscapes, the soundscapes get lost in themselves, and it becames a meandering mishmosh of semi-well developed ideas thrown together in an almost pleasing way. The first phase of the title track is perfect proof. It starts out and takes four minutes to actually start up. Four minutes. It's moderately pleasant to listen to, but it's way too long. Then Wilson starts singing, and it's again pleasant enough, but not very memorable at all. Techno dance time is good fun, and Wilson shows off his excellent guitar skills here which is always fun (since I've known his solos to single-handedly save a song). Then it relapses and meanders more for four minutes.

The Moon Touches Your Shoulder is slow and unremarkable. Dislocated Day shines only because of the sick soloing all throughout and great guitar parts. Then the title track phase two is pretty similar to part one, except even more slow and laid back...in the beggining. Then in the end, it really picks up soem steam and this piece...is probably the best one to get lost in. I don't why the first phase doesn't work as well, but this is where it's at. This is what Wilson wanted to do. Four stars for great soloing, some great soundscapes and nice ideas, repeated a few too many times.

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Send comments to FishyMonkey (BETA) | Report this review (#72083) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, March 16, 2006

Review by Cygnus X-2
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Porcupine Tree's 1995 album The Sky Moves Sideways is an album that typifies and fully explores their space rock roots and ideas. This album, bookended by two largely extended pieces of music that take the listener to another world, is probably the best album Porcupine Tree has released thus far, and it may be one of the best albums of the 90's at that. Steven Wilson has a knack for creating engaging and exciting music, and this album is no different. From the ethereal and other-worldly The Sky Moves Sideways to the hard rocking riffing of Dislocated Day, this album is an eclectic and involved album throughout the entire journey. The drums are dynamic and are well placed, the bass is thumping and moves along nicely with the drums and other instruments. The keyboards are lush and create soothing atmospheres to lift the listener off of their feet, and the guitar is varied and the effects and emotions that are conveyed are just utterly superb.

The album opens with The Sky Moves Sideways Phase I, which essentially to any fan of Pink Floyd will remind them of Shine on You Crazy Diamond with a long synth based orchestration that is soothing to the ear and is a great introduction. Soon, gentle and very phased guitar chords are played over a steady bass/drum beat for the next few minutes. Steven Wilson's vocals on this track are very echoey and very other-worldly. The extended outro has very electronic overtones, and the flute solo fits very well over that. In short, this is 18 minutes of progressive nirvana. Dislocated Day starts off as a gentle piece but turns into an all out rocker that shows the definite future base of Porcupine Tree's sound with powerful riffs and strong keyboard and guitar interplay.

Dislocated Day is an acoustic based piece that has soft and gentle vocals as well as a definite Floydian feel to it. It's the softest piece on the album and it fits very well as the middle piece. Prepare Yourself was intended as a short interlude that preceded the extended instrumental piece Moonloop, but Moonloop didn't make it onto the album. It's a short little guitar solo that in the context of the album acts as a prelude to The Sky Moves Sideways Phase II. Now the 16 minute instrumental (except one questionable sequence when a celestial sounding voice) has a terrific jam feel to it, with rocking bass, thumping drums, spacey and well timed keyboards, and guitar solo after guitar solo. Wilson is superb on this song, with strong guitar sections that add a layer of dissonance to the mix at one point. The track ends essentially as it began with celestial and spacey keyboards giving it the final goodbye.

In the end, this is my favorite Porcupine Tree album. The "modern Pink Floyd" have struck a chord and made their name with the space rock fanatics with this album. There are no weak tracks, no meager pieces of filler in a feeble effort to fill more space on the album. Every song here is well arranged, well performed, and most importantly, well written. I recommend any fan of Pink Floyd in the slightest bit get this album immediately to hear a modern take on that classic sound. Now, this album isn't just a rip-off, though, it's also a really creative and original sounding album as well. Recommended to all. 5/5.

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Send comments to Cygnus X-2 (BETA) | Report this review (#82270) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, June 30, 2006

Review by Australian
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars "The sky Moves Sideways" is Porcupine Tree's first substantial step into the realm of psychedelic music. Porcupine Tree is heavier than most other space rock bands, and not necessarily in the scene of using overdrive guitars, but due more to the thrumming intensity of their music. The music on "The sky Moves Sideways" is intense in many parts and the atmospheres created are thunderous. Coincidentally there are also quieter parts to the album which are usually complemented by a slow synthesizer which creates a beautiful floating feel to the music. The best example of this is the intro to "The sky Moves Sideways part 1" which opens the album superbly. Sad though it may sound, this is probably my favourite part of the album.

After the intro the music moves into one of the few vocal passages on the album, the lyrics in this section are very fitting for the album. Every thing up to this point carries a distinctly Pink Floyd style to it, particularly the intro to the album. Porcupine tree is a little more textured than Pink Floyd as there is more happening in the music, usually. The music gradually builds intensity in this section as the crescendo builds until the psychedelically simulated sub-metal breaks out. There is a repeated flute line in this section and a couple of guitar solos. This sort of music carries on until about the 14th minute where it dies down to sublime sounding music not dissimilar to the beginning of the song.

The next few songs are very reminiscent of Pink Floyd and they all follow similar paths as the opener "The sky Moves Sideways part 1", with guitar solos and atmospheric synthesizers the whole way. "Dislocated Day" is quite a tedious song and it can really get on your nerves, the way Steve Wilson sings the lyrics is annoying. "The Moon Touches Your Shoulder" is a mellower song compared to the rest of the album and it is more a vocal based tune. "Prepare yourself" is an prologue to "The sky Moves Sideways part 2" and it is basically a 1 and a half minute guitar solo.

"The sky Moves Sideways part 2" stars off very similar to part 1, but this time it moves into louder section a lot faster. Ultimately there are several more changes in the second part and yet again it follows a similar sound to the first part. There is more of a psychedelic feel to this part and the tape effects are more prominent. There is a fantastic guitar solo around the 12th minute, which follows a section of tape-effects. "The sky Moves Sideways part 2" is ultimately a better song than the first part as it is more interesting and varies more.

The packaging of the special edition version of "The sky Moves Sideways" is among the best I've ever seen. There are two segments which fold out and in each segment there is a picture of a rocky cliff and when these sections are opened there is a CD in each, for the special edition comes with a bonus CD. On the bonus disc there is the original version of "The sky Moves Sideways" which runs for 34 minutes, for the songs were originally joined as one long epic. There is also an extra set of lyrics on this version, and some of the instrumentation is different. There are three other songs, stars die, "Moonloop" (improvisation), and "moonloop" (coda.)

This extra disc is very interesting to listen and any hardcore Porcupine Tree fan would enjoy it. I take my hat off to Steve Wilson has done a fantastic job in the production department and I also congratulate the band on the quality of the music. The instruments used in the recording of "The sky Moves Sideways" are genuine prog-grade devices.

(not including bonus disc as it isn't part of the original album) 1.of The sky Moves Sideways part 1 (5/5) 2.Dislocated Day (2/5) 3.The Moon Touches Your Shoulder (3/5) 4.Prepare Yourself (3/5) 5.of The sky Moves Sideways Part 2 (5/5) Total = 18 divided by (number of Songs) = 3.6 = 4 stars Excellent addition to any prog music collection

"The sky Moves Sideways" is a sonic experience and, like prog albums it takes the listener to fantastic far off worlds. "The sky Moves Sideways" is a very good album and it is the best Porcupine Tree album I've heard so far. I would recommend "The sky Moves Sideways" to all Psychedelic fans, young or old, everyone can enjoy this album.

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Send comments to Australian (BETA) | Report this review (#85521) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, August 03, 2006

Review by Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars I have the double cd version with the second disc consisting of a 34 1/2 minute alternate version of the song "The Sky Moves Sideways", as well as the amazing song "Stars Die" and two versions of "Moonloop". It's hard for me to put into words how much I love this spacey, soundscape music. The music drifts often in a dreamy and spacey way that just transcends me to another plane.There are also many violent and aggressive sections as well. This is such a trip ! Steven says that the original plan in making this album was to make one long 50 minute self titled track, but when that didn't happen they decided to include as a bonus this alternate version which is closest thing they have to it.

"The Sky Moves Sideways Phase 1" is such a psychedelic ride. It opens with spacey sounds as some brief processed spoken words come in.Then spacey waves start to roll in at 1 1/2 minutes.Guitar, drums and bass join in as well. Great sound ! Vocals after 4 1/2 minutes as the waves stop. It's so moving when the sound gets fuller before 6 minutes. A nice relaxed guitar solo follows. A beat kicks in at 8 1/2 minutes and we get some ripping guitar before 11 1/2 minutes. Amazing sound ! Travis Smith adds some flute 13 minutes in as the sound settles briefly then kicks back in hard. It settles again after 14 1/2 minutes to a spacey soundscape and acoustic guitar joins in. Just brilliant. "Dislocated Day" opens with the phone ringing before heavy drums and processed vocals lead the way. Lots of synths in this one. It gets fairly powerful with guitar becoming prominant. This contrast continues. Ripping guitar 2 1/2 minutes in that goes on and on. It ends with someone leaving a message on an answering machine.

"The Moon Touches Your Shoulder" opens with strummed guitar and reserved vocals. Gorgeous. It starts to build before 3 minutes until it's pretty heavy 2 minutes later. "Prepare Yourself" is a 2 minute song with some crazy distorted guitar. A beat comes in after a minute as guitar continues to light it up. "The Sky Moves Sideways Phase II " is dark to begin with as different sounds come and go. A spacey atmosphere takes over 2 minutes in. Loud synths come and go as does strummed guitar. In fact this song features some insane guitar, soaring guitar and scorching guitar, yes Mr.Wilson is busy. Female vocal melodies come in before 6 minutes then organ.The guitar is making some noise.The song then drifts along until guitar kicks in before 12 1/2 minutes. Love that part. You can hear the sound of water after 15 minutes when the guitar stops.

On the second disc, the alternate version of "The Sky Moves Sideways" is dark and spacey for the first minute then these beautiful waves of sound roll in. Very FLOYD-like. The guitar starts to solo after 3 minutes until we get a dead calm before 5 minutes. Fragile vocals come in followed by a fuller sound as the guitar solos tastefully. Drums and organ support. Vocals are back before 7 1/2 minutes. A beat kicks in before 9 minutes as synths join in. The beat stops after 16 minutes as we get a spacey calm. The song continues to change and evolve and we get female vocal melodies after 25 1/2 minutes. The guitar is back with some raw sounds. She's back after 32 minutes to the end.

"Stars Die" is such a beautiful, spacey and dreamy song.This is one of my favourite tracks by them. Pure bliss. "Moonloop (Improvisation)" is spacey with birds chirping as the song drifts along.The guitar starts to make some noise after 5 minutes until it's scorching a minute later as the sound builds. Guitar is lighting it up before 11 minutes. Spoken word samples 13 1/2 minutes to the end. Cool. "Moonloop (Coda)" features those birds singing again. Lots of atmosphere. Vocal samples after a minute. The tempo starts to pick up until we get a full and intense sound after 3 minutes. Raw guitar follows as it winds down.

My favourites on here are "Stars Die" , "The Sky Moves Sideways Phase I" and ""The Moon Touches Your Shoulder". A must for space cadets and PT fans.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#94994) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Review by OpethGuitarist
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Like a thundercloud.

An outstanding artistic achievement, I pinpoint this album as the moment Steven Wilson becomes assured of himself and his musical abilities. Wilson is able to captivate us with powerful and intense landscapes without going overboard into a realm of pretentiousness that is often the plague of many talented bands. Wilson has a certain knack, a certain taste, for choosing the correct notes and not delving into the unnecessary "art" as some would call it. This is one of his finest achievements in music.

I can't help but form pictures in my head while listening to this, as I feel I am provided as much a listening experience as an atmospheric one. Listening to this outside in a wooded and clouded area only adds to the visual nature I believe this album evokes. Time seems to float by effortlessly, and you find yourself halfway through the album in what seems like 5 minutes. One can not also help but be reminded of the Pink Floyd classic 'Shine On' in the nature in which this album is presented much like WYWH, with the disconnected epic at the beginning and end of the record. However, the music has much more to offer than a mere Floyd clone.

The closer is my personal favorite, especially when the distorted guitars first come in at around 4:30 and we have something that somewhat resembles a chorus, a jangly bit with powerful drumming, some inspiring lines of creativity for myself. Wilson really displays his artistry thoughout the album, even the shorter tracks like Dislocated Day, which is a compact piece that shows PT's more aggressive side.

If you are a fan of space rock or any form of psychedelia, this is a must have, an outstanding achievement that I look at as one of the essential pieces of the genre, and one of Porcupine Tree's finest, if not the best. Add a half star, this one's quite excellent.

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Send comments to OpethGuitarist (BETA) | Report this review (#98730) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Review by evenless
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars "The Sky Moves Sideways" was my first encounter with PORCUPINE TREE and what an encounter it was! Since I already loved PINK FLOYD this seemed to be PT's perfect album to kick off with!

SW combines a Floydian guitar style with some almost whispering psychedelically lyrics and the result is mind blowing! If you like(d) PINK FLOYD you will certainly appreciate if not LOVE this album as well!

Just a hint: if you would want to purchase this album make sure you get your hands on the 2004 re-issue because this re-issue contains a bonus disc with some great songs on it like: The Sky moves sideways (Alternative Version), Stars die (One of my all time favourite PT songs!) and two versions of Moonloop. However: If you want the best version of MOONLOOP you should listen to the unedited improvisation lasting just over 40 minutes now (still) available at freakemporium.com

Over all a breathtaking album that takes you away on a trip as you were laying on your back, just watching the sky move sideways.

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Send comments to evenless (BETA) | Report this review (#99771) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Review by Fight Club
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars Well for some reason I can't log in as bionicfog which I used for my other reviews, so w/e...

Wow! This is one of those albums that just immediately hits you as something remarkable. Like the first time listening to Dark Side of the Moon as a kid, then hearing it again years later and still thinking to yourself "wow this is just one of the most unique sounds an artist has ever achieved" The Sky Moves Sideways is exactly like that. Possibly the essential masterpiece of PT's early era. There is so much to enjoy on this album and as long as some of the songs are, it keeps your attention all the way. Few albums allow someone to forget everything and float away as easily as this one does. From the beginning synth of TSMS Phase One until the end of Phase Two the listener is completely entranced. The title track offers some really trippy sections that just swirl your head around, eventually leading to a beautiful melancholy outro section in which you just feel your thoughts swimming out of your head. The rest of the album is no different. There are some very crunchy riffs, but they only add to the ethereal quality of the album. Each track serves as an aid linkin each section of the album as a whole, because keep in mind this is no collection of songs, this album is an adventure in itself. One highlight might I add is the highly improvisational Moonloop. This track is a whopping 17 minutes, but IMO does not bore for a second. It's one of those things that you can listen to on a nice summer day and it surrounds you in the fascination and appreciation of the life energy all around. One of the greatest ambient tracks ever created, really stunning. The album closes with TSMS Phase Two which offers quite some epic moments leaving you with the conclusion that you have just experienced near enlightenment. This is album is what some may call a "lightbulb moment" for me. After hearing In Absentia I thought nothing could come close to those feelings again, and the PT stunned me again. Essential: a masterpiece of ANY music.

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Send comments to Fight Club (BETA) | Report this review (#114826) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, March 10, 2007

Review by The Prognaut
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars More than a "must" in every Prog Rock collection, "The Sky Moves Sideways" is without a doubt, one of the most significant records that'd describe and suit the genre perfectly. Evidentially, this exercise of wonderful music gives us that certain flashback to the beginnings of crossover prog intertwined along the scent of a renewed formula that happens to be quite appealing. This masterpiece resembles to me a well illustrated novel, presenting a dazzling prologue and a ravishing epilog with some chapters in between that turns the trip into some magical dream and this never-ending story.

Phase One: You can almost feel the presence of a Floydian spirit wandering around through the first couple of chords and this upbeat drum that creates an eyes wide shut paradise depicted in beautiful colors, images, scenes and unknown whereabouts in your mind. The song takes its time to let Steve WILSON's voice chirp in a burst of poetry. The lyrics are as smooth and comfortable as the music running in the background. The blend is just unbelievable. This opening scene will carry on flowing through unpretentious passages for a while, making your skin crawl slowly just to the point where you unconsciously realize time and space have become second because your senses have already been abducted by the rhythm and the suffocating ambiance. Strangely how, almost nineteen minutes of your life have turned into a déjà-vu that'd leave you a little numb and unease from the inside out. Just amazing.

The disturbing noise of an unanswered ringing phone suddenly appears nervously in the act. Tension is right away shattered by the thundering sound of compassed strings and a low tuned spoken voice drawing the musical canvas. "Dislocated Day" is certainly a straightforward rock piece that fits delightfully within the record. It has no fluidity on the arrangements but surprisingly, it catches your attention into wondering just to promptly figure out the ending has just shut your ears. Its transition far from elaborated, is rich in its powerful impact and practical to the means of the whole album.

Right after, "The Moon Touches Your Shoulder" reveals the inner peace and the quiet falling drops of a landscaping ballad that ends up flooding your insides. Neither touchy nor mellow, the song fulfills expectation out of complex simplicities and evocative words. The righteous soulful side for such a humongous record.

Fortunately or unfortunately, I happen to own the Digipack reissue which presents "Moonloop" in its "Improvisation" and "Coda" versions. I haven't had the chance to listen to the original track of the LP, but I can picture it's got almost the same nomenclature described on Disc 2 of this special edition. This song to me reveals the psychedelic warp from which the band came out in the very begging of their prominent career. The instrumentation is harmonious yet it could be erratic depending from which side of the glass you are standing on at the time you're spinning the record.

Phase Two: The closing section of the battle within. It's not only the second chapter to the most astonishing epic by the band, but the missing jigsaw to complete the puzzle. The Floydian-like act remains throughout sliding guitars and space passages that underlines the ambiance of the record. Despite of being the sequel to Part One, it's so unique and unlike at the same time. The musical revelation goes further on through whimsical arrangements and unexpected composing. The lyrics here turn out to be less punchy and only subsequent instead of giving away a proper closure. Still, the purpose is mesmerizing and convincing.

Definitely to many progheads, this may be their favorite album by the English band and to others like me, the most Progressive record PORCUPINE TREE has given birth to among their promising discography. The musical conspiracy perpetuated in here goes far from eloquent to be defined as brilliant. Deservedly, a masterpiece of Prog Rock. Nothing left for me to say.

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Send comments to The Prognaut (BETA) | Report this review (#136364) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Review by ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Little by little, PT matures. When I listen to the opening number, the mood is of course Floydian, but not only. The entry part is fullly "Tangerine Dream" oriented (which is fine with me BTW). It is a long journey across the universe, leading you to far away planets in a quite, yet beautiful atmosphere. The beat will increase somewhat after the first half and becomes really hypnotic. It almost gets hard-rocking for a while, just before being brought as the song has started. In the tranquility seas...

Since this track is rather varied, it flows nicely and you just don't notice that it lasts for about twenty minutes.

The mood is drastically different during "Dislocated Day". A good rock song with upbeat rhythm, nothing quiet here. The band reveals his harder side. It is rather nice to feel the different atmospheres of this album. When you'll reach "The Moon Touches Your Shoulder", as you could expect, it is a real soft song, fully "trip" oriented. It catches up some rock speed at the end.

"Mooloop" is a song already released as an EP in 1994 in exactly the same format. To my ears, it sounds as an almost fully improvised theme. It's a kind of "Echoes" (middle part) that lasts for just over seventeen minutes. A bit longish, I must say.

Phase two of the title track is almost as long as the first one (yes, like "SOYCD"...). This is the perfect song to calm you down or completely relax. Ambient and soft spacial sounds for almost five minutes before it lifts off very nicely. I like very much the short interlude which features some beautiful and almost celestial vocals. It is definitely a good space-rock song. A bit adventourous maybe, but not that much after all. "Floyd" paved the way already a long time ago.

It is very difficult to speak about this album without referring to Floyd. Because they are a major source of influence. The great guitar solo at the end of "Phase Two" is a nother perfect example of this fact. I would rate this album with three stars, mainly because of "Moonloop" which is too uniform and too much improv oriented to my taste.

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Send comments to ZowieZiggy (BETA) | Report this review (#138697) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, September 16, 2007

Review by Flucktrot
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars I bought the 2004 double CD release only because it was a better deal, but I'm sure glad I did, because the extra disk contains my favorite material. I enjoy the alternative version of the title track more than the original, and Moonloop is so much better when the coda is tacked onto it. Many reviewers have noted the obvious Floyd influence, but fewer have noted the just-as-apparent dance/club music influence. Throw in some Middle-Eastern flair, and you have a serviceable (though still quite imprecise) way to describe this album. You have to be patient, but this album will slowly grow on you.

The Sky Moves Sideways (alternate version). The run-time suggests that this would be one beast of a track, but musically it's much more tame. The basic progression is straightforward: a Floydian intro, a simple main theme, an extended upbeat dance section, mellow die-down, a spacey guitar/synth section, and a creepy vocal outtro. It's that simple. There are some captivating soundscapes and guitar tones (though not many solos) along the way as well. The alternate version generally has more percussion and guitar lines, though unfortunately the final guitar solo on the original didn't make the alternate--I prefer the alternate, though these distinctions aren't great. There's certainly some padding to be found here, but not so much to keep me away.

Moonloop (improv and coda). Again, you have to be in the right mood for this one. Also, if I don't have the coda to look forward to, then it seems a lot more pointless in my mind. As far as spacey improvs go, you can do a lot worse: cool guitar, and the bass, percussion and keys are on the same page, which keeps thing coherent. And then comes the coda: an awesome, raw, and powerful groove that builds to a classic freak-out. I wish Porcupine Tree could harness more of this intensity!

The rest of the album is rather forgettable--not bad, but not especially captivating either. I guess I have yet to discover what some others have regarding this album: it seems rather slow, padded, and uninspired in places. If you're in the mood for ambient music with a little bit of an edge, then this may be right up your alley, though I rarely find myself in that mood.

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Send comments to Flucktrot (BETA) | Report this review (#140787) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, September 27, 2007

Review by progrules
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Although this was not PT's first album it was the first I bought by this band. It made me want more because I really liked it but if I look back now at their impressive career I have to conclude that this first acquaintance was the ultimate highlight. This album was at that time the leader of psychedelic/space rock. Everything you may expect from this department in progressive rock is to be found on this album: long-drawn-out compositions with "spacy" impressions, great build up especially of the two title track songs. They are amazing compositions to me, great classics. To a lesser degree this is the case with Moonloop but there's not as much happening in this song as in the two other epics. Dislocated day is of a different calibre, a short song, nice, quite catchy even but more of a normal, regular song. The Moon touches your shoulder and Prepare yourself are to me the lesser songs of the album.

This album is great but not an absolute classic worthy of 5 stars, so it has to be 4.

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Send comments to progrules (BETA) | Report this review (#141641) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Review by Prog Leviathan
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars This celebrated release by Porcupine Tree is also one of the group's most distinct, in that it features lengthy, sprawling compositions with rich sonic soundscapes punctuated by uniquely intense and memorable builds. All in all-- an oustanding early release.

The group's early reputation for being similar to Pink Floyd is most defendable with this album. While I disagree with this comparisson as a general thing, it's hard to deny that the long, slow builds and airy keyboard textures bares a resemblance to "Wish You Were Here", but that's about it. "Sky Moves Sideways" feels very calculated, precise, and-- when the tempo picks up-- very exciting. These heavy moments are the highlight of the album, made so thanks to expert composition by Wilson, who uses them with great emotional and musical effect. The group's playing is oustanding, with Barbieri's keyboards almost stealing the show from Wilson's lengthy guitar solos. To top it off we're given wonderfully cryptic lyrics and a memorable vibe to carry us away.

I imagine "Sky Moves Sideways" as having a much broader appeal than PT's more divisive recent works; it is very easy to listen to and offers something for everyone. A great release!

Songwriting: 4 Instrumental Performances: 4 Lyrics/Vocals: 3 Style/Emotion/Replay: 4

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Send comments to Prog Leviathan (BETA) | Report this review (#149279) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Review by russellk
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars No man could sustain creative input into two bands, surely. Yet by 1995 STEVEN WILSON was the creative heart of both PORCUPINE TREE and NO-MAN. Something had to give.

It did. The early commercial promise of NO-MAN had gradually slipped away, and their 1994 album 'Flowermouth' saw them striking off in a genuinely progressive direction. Thus WILSON was able to bring his pop hooks and commercial sensibilities to bear on this and subsequent PORCUPINE TREE releases. The clamour for PT music to be played live resulted in his forming a band - the 'joke' was over, and PORCUPINE TREE was now a reality. 'The Sky Moves Sideways', more than any other PT album, is the fruitful result of his ear for a tune meeting his atmospheric space rock gift. More tuneful than 'Up The Downstair', it still has enough space rock for everyone (including WILSON himself, subsequently) to cry 'FLOYD'!

Fair enough. 'The Sky Moves Sideways' reeks of PINK FLOYD. But who said originality was the prime concern of music? This album works because it feels so familiar the moment the synths of the title track start sending chills of primordial delight up your spine. I care far more for musical quality than originality, and this has quality enough to power a small galaxy. After a gentle opening full of promise, Part 1 of the title track delivers with lyrics and a chorus redolent of - and easily as good as - 'Shine On You Crazy Diamond'. 'Sometimes I feel like a fist' is a monster hook, and he uses it to maximum effect. Finally his confidence in his own voice allows him to assign melody to the vocals, with stunning results. Then the track explodes into a techno-OZRIC extravaganza with a pulsing beat, wonderful funky bass and squealing guitars, followed by a rhythm workout of incredible energy. The sky has indeed moved sideways. The comedown to finish the track is exquisite, the fadeaway just right, a great end to a memorable track.

Part 2 of the title track concludes the album, another nod to 'Shine On'. The track has another stellar riff, though the music itself is perhaps a little long for the depth of ideas sustaining it. In between these two enormous bookends is an eminently listenable album. 'Dislocated Day' is a song with a strong hook, and 'The Moon Touches Your Shoulder' showcases WILSON's growing songwriting ability.

Now things get complicated. Depending on what version of this album you have (UK, US or 2004 reissue), you might get any combination of tracks. They're all good. In the case of 'Stars Die', inexplicably left off the original, genuinely great. And then there's 'Moonloop', the single most obvious pointer to WILSON's interest in ambient techno. This is redolent of THE ORB and STEVE HILLAGE's SYSTEM 7 - in fact, the ORB track 'The Back Side of the Moon (Underwater Deep Space Mix)' must surely be WILSON's inspiration here, with sustained-note guitar overlaying lush synths, building slowly to a genuine climax (the 'Coda' on the reissue). It's beautiful ambience is one of the best things WILSON has ever done.

WILSON is on record as retrospectively dismissing this album as too FLOYDian. I do wish musicians wouldn't do this. Why not let the punters just enjoy the music? (Though I understand how he might have wanted to distance himself from the commerically suicidal prog-rock label.) It would be a serious mistake to regard this as a knock-off. It is a heady combination of extended compositions and pithy musical moments, and every moment is of a high standard. This is a must-listen. I can't imagine any serious progressive rock collection without this record.

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Send comments to russellk (BETA) | Report this review (#151844) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars One of these days. we'll change our direction

"The sky moved sideways" was the first album to be recorded by Porcupine Tree as a band, as opposed to a vehicle for the solo work of Steve Wilson. Make no mistake though, this is still very much a Wilson project, the other band members playing their parts in the way Wilson prescribes. Even then, three of the tracks (Dislocated day, The moon touches your shoulder, and Prepare yourself) are 100% solo efforts by Steve. On the 2003 expanded remaster, Gavin Harrison substitutes real drums for the programmed ones which were used on the first two of these tracks.

The title track is in two lengthy parts, in total occupying well over half of the album. It was originally conceived as a continuous 50 minute piece but never completed as such. A 34 minute alternative version can be found though on the 2003 expanded edition. Going back to the original album, "Part one" is by far the strongest, and indeed is the best track on the album. It builds from a soft start featuring Hawaiian guitar and whispered vocals to a louder chorus. Before long, the pace changes and a long section reminiscent of Pink Floyd's "One of these days" takes over. This twists and weaves through loud and quieter, but constantly hypnotic, guitar chords embellished with colourful effects and washes of sound. The piece has developed into a wonderful live track, where the dramatics of the soft and louder sections are emphasised even more. There is also some fine mellotron here, for those who yearn for the tones of that legendary machine.

The rest of the tracks on the album have little chance of measuring up to this excellent start, and in truth they do fall shorter. That said, "Dislocated day" is a powerful dirge with distorted vocals and some thrusting guitar chords. "Moonloop" moves into the ambient territory of Phases 3 and 4 of "Voyage 34", the spacey sounds and relaxed mood of the track being far removed from the Porcupine Tree of today.

The second "phase" of "The sky moved sideways" is entirely instrumental, apart from some vocalising by Suzanne Barbieri. While it has many of the dynamics of the first phase, I find it to be less satisfying and rather muddled. At times, it breaks down into a cacophony of sound which comes across as unfocused rather than appealing.

"The sky moved sideways" is an honest attempt at making a coherent album. The quality of the results is variable, but overall, it is an enjoyable listen. I must confess though, I do usually tend to move on to something else after playing track one.

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Send comments to Easy Livin (BETA) | Report this review (#154921) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, December 09, 2007

Review by progaardvark
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars By the time Porcupine Tree's third studio album, The Sky Moves Sideways, was released, Steven Wilson had put together the core of the band by adding Colin Edwin on bass, Chris Maitland on drums, and Richard Barbieri on keyboards. Wilson had assembled this band because there now was a need for Porcupine Tree to perform their music live. All three new members had worked with Wilson on various projects prior to this (Maitland and Barbieri had been part of No-Man's touring band), so they were keen to the sound and direction of Porcupine Tree. Recording for The Sky Moves Sideways actually started before Wilson added the new members, so the album has some songs featuring the whole band and some in which Wilson performed all the musical parts.

The Sky Moves Sideways was Porcupine Tree's most successful release at the time, often hailed as the successor to Pink Floyd and even suggesting that this was what Pink Floyd should have been doing in the 1990s. The Pink Floyd influences are clearly heard on this album and even Wilson himself admitted that he tried to maintain that Floydian vibe throughout the album because it was attracting Pink Floyd fans, although he regrets it. Regardless of Wilson's comments, the album is amazing and I would go as far as saying that although it has such a Floydian feel to it, there is still a good deal of this album that isn't like Pink Floyd, such as the extensive sections of ambient soundscapes and melodies. I think many listeners that hear something that sounds spacey, ultimately invoke the Pink Floyd name without ever actually giving it much thought. Some even make the comparison with Wish You Were Here because the title track was divided into two and placed at the beginning and ending of the album like the Shine on You Crazy Diamond suite. That's about it for the comparison for me though. Musically it is quite different from Wish You Were Here with the only exception being the use of lush synthesizers in places. Like its predecessor, Up the Downstair, The Sky Moves Sideways is the perfect marriage of psychedelic rock, ambient experiments, and contemporary rock.

There were three different releases of the album, a European release, a US release, and an expanded edition released in 2004. My review is for the European release, but the track listings from the other two releases would not effect my overall rating of this album in anyway. This is clearly a masterpiece to my ears and is still in my mind the best Porcupine Tree album ever released (even with parts of it recorded before Wilson formed the core of the band). An essential purchase that should be in every prog rock fan's collection. Five stars.

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Send comments to progaardvark (BETA) | Report this review (#157636) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, January 04, 2008

Review by ProgBagel
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Porcupine Tree - The Sky Moves Sideways 4 stars

Steven Wilson seemed to be hunting for an epic song, after a decent attempt at 'Voyage 34'; he took 'The Sky Moves Sideways' to another level.

This album marked new heights for the No-Man side project. Wilson started to take this as a serious band by adding some members, Colin Edwin on bass guitar and double bass, Richard Barbieri on synthesizers and electronics and finally, Chris Maitland on percussion. Edwin and Barbieri were previous session musicians for the band. Other guest artists include Theo Travis on flute and Suzanne Barbieri on vocals. Regardless of the new members, the music is written by Steven Wilson.

There is a radical change in terms of the overall composition of the album. The previous albums seemed to be collections of some short pieces, wrapped up and compiled into an album. 'The Sky Moves Sideways' has the title track, a massive epic, split up into two 'phases', and just three songs in between (on the re-mastered version, which I am basing my review off of). The effects and trance music are just right in this one. They give more leeway to other instruments like the guitar, keys and drums which give this a more 'band' sound. This is one of the big transitional albums in the Porcupine Tree career.

'The Sky Moves Sideways Phase 1' - This track starts out with a spacey that eventually brings in some bass and drums. The bass just comes in at the beginning of every measure and the drums are very minimal just to get an idea. Some spacey chords on the synthesizer forms a transition in the piece and Wilson begins to sing. The singing style is different from any of the previous works, there is no effect on them and instead of 'singing', it is more like 'talking' very soothingly. The drums come back in and play the same beat from before. When the chorus comes into play, it is mostly guitar driven, a clean sound. About 8 and a half minutes the sound changes into some trip-hop that was evident in 'Up the Downstair'. For most of the remains, the trip-hop continues and a guitar solo is almost prominent for a few minutes, sans a few breaks. The tone is very violent; a very dirty effect is put in for measure. An extended flute solo is also done here, making this a very expansive track, a true epic. When the trip- hop is over there is a little bit of silence, and then an acoustic guitar comes in and plays beautifully, going all the way to the outro. This song was indeed up there regarding epics, and it is only part one!

'Dislocated Day' - This is one of the three tracks thrown in the middle of the two phases. Unfortunately the title track just made them look amateurish, but they still weren't that bad, except for this one. This track shows Wilson's bit of hard rock tendency. The track mostly consists of the same beat over and over with the occasional guitar rhythm and solo thrown in. It is very repetitive; I did not find this song to be that great.

'The Moon Touches Your Shoulder' - This was the best of the three middle tracks. This was really Porcupine Tree's first slow acoustic track. It has that 'Dark Side of the Moon' vibe to it with the acoustic guitar strumming and some lead notes gently hit. The lyrics also make it feel like this should have been in the title track. The track moves very smoothly and crescendo's into a wonderful clean solo. The crescendo continues and the hard rock guitar rhythm comes back and repeats a small riff till the end. This song was great.

'Prepare Yourself' was an intro for 'Moonloop'. The first disc on the re-master lacked the latter track so it was certainly a strange choice to be kept on this disc without 'Moonloop'. It's just a short guitar solo. Again, it was just serving as an intro; the purpose on the re-master was very minimal.

'The Sky Moves Sideways Phase 2' - This starts in a similar fashion as the first one. The intro is again a spacey atmospheric one. The heavier intro comes in this time with no transition preceding it. After the heavier intro, a wonderful extended guitar solo runs for a near 3 minutes. By this time the song is already more than halfway over. The trip-hop comes right back into place, followed by atmosphere. Then another guitar solo comes in to close this large masterpiece.

I'll be very brief about the second disc, since this is what most people will find today anyways. The alternate version of 'The Sky Moves Sideways' doesn't differ significantly. There is a little bit more music added a scarce amount of vocals from Suzanne Barbieri and a few more lyrics. 'Stars Die' is an excellent track that would heavily influence Porcupine Tree's music from Signify to In Absentia. I was not to fond of the 'Moonloop' improvisation or coda. While I appreciate the talent and effort put into it, it just seemed directionless and way too open ended.not to mention the length either.

All in all, this was an excellent album. The reason being is for mostly the title track, which is worthy of the purchase alone. 'The Moon Touches Your Shoulder' is also another track that ranks up there with Porcupine Tree's best. The two in the middle could be dealt without; the only reason this why this album isn't 5 stars. Highly recommended. The second disk is a bonus; just don't expect it to be as great as the original album.

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Send comments to ProgBagel (BETA) | Report this review (#164175) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, March 17, 2008

Review by Queen By-Tor
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Prepare yourself

Porcupine Tree's third studio album and first attempt as a full fledged band. What's clear in this album apart from it's predecessors is that this is really where the Heavy Prog tag starts to stick. The music is heavy and yet it retains a very large amount of the psychadellia from the band's first two albums (especially it's older brother, the fantastic Up The Downstair). Long songs run rampant, although some shorter more typical ''songs'' are included in between the book ending title track. With a great amount of variety and exceptional performances, this is Porcupine Tree's first essential album.

The title track, The Sky Moves Sideways (Phase 1 & 2) runs at a colossal 35-minutes, and is, luckily, the standout of the album. Starting and continuing with some very Pink Floyd inspired space rock riffs and a kind of pseudo-eclectronica feel to it this is a song which is driven by heavy moods and wandering instrumental sections. Indeed, the entire Phase 2 of the track is entirely instrumental, spare some voices (not with any words, mind you) from an amazing female performer by the name of Suzanne Barbieri which fits the piece very well. Though it may increase in volume and seeming focus from time to time this track is still one which demands attention and will certainly take you for a ride as so many fantastic prog-rockers have been able to do since the genre's conception.

The middle tracks are all also worth mentioning, as they're also incredible. Dislocated Day is a heavy, bass-driven piece with Wilson's modified and haunting voice filling the small amount of room not already taken up by the enormous sound of the music on it's own. Quite dark and semi-eerie, this is a song that reflects where the band would later take the project. The Moon Touches Your Shoulder is a song that follows up the previous rather strangely, as it's a very mellow track geared more towards the Floydian influences with its soft guitars and vocals.

Different versions have had modified track listings, for some Stars Die, the dark and brooding track which would later become the title of a compilation, and Moonloop would be included on the album. The version which I have only includes those tracks on the bonus disc which was the Moonloop EP. These tracks are also very good, but more for the PT fans. People of all (progressive) musical backgrounds will very much appreciate the studio album as is, despite the tracklisting, however.

A fantastic effort from Porcupine Tree worthy of 5 dying stars. Versions vary from place to place and master to master but despite the confusion this is a marvelous product of the Psych/Space Rock/Heavy Prog genres and is recommended to all.

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Send comments to Queen By-Tor (BETA) | Report this review (#168032) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, April 19, 2008

Review by LiquidEternity
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Porcupine Tree's last hurrah as a non-band. The music is quirky and druggie-esque still, but the sweeping wall of sound certainly justifies a bit of oddity here and there. The title track features some of their most amazing patterns of sound, and always seems even more fun to me simply on account of its length. This is not modern Porcupine Tree at all. They are still somewhat in retro-mode at this point. Also of note is the song Dislocated Day, which makes for a pretty crazy rocker in there, albeit with rather mellow vocals.

An album worth checking out, but if trippy and mostly instrumental space rock passages aren't your thing, it probably will take a while to grow.

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Send comments to LiquidEternity (BETA) | Report this review (#168631) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, April 24, 2008

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Porcupine Tree´s third album The Sky Moves Sideways is a step forward for the band. Their sound has matured and the songs are much better than they were on the two first studio albums. The music style is very psychadelic, slow and at times a bit too dragging if you ask me.

The Sky Moves Sideways phase one starts the album and the first part is very good with it´s almost Pink Floyd like groove. The last part which is almost the last 10 minutes of the song is more ambient without vocals and I can´t say I like this part of Porcupine Tree´s sound. I usually get bored during this section. Dislocated day is a pretty good song which is more vers chorus orientated while The moon touches your shoulder starts very subtle but ends with a climax. A great song that one. Prepare yourself is just a short instrumental without much relevance really. Moonloop which lasts for 17 minutes is a very ambient song which I find a very trivial and the same can be said about The sky moves sideways phase two which is a very long song too ( almost 17 minutes) that drags on a bit too long for my taste. It´s a bit more exciting than Moonloop though and one of the better songs on the album.

The musicianship is very good and atmosphere is the key element in porcupine Tree´s sound on The Sky Moves Sideways and then dynamics.

The production is good and it makes the album an enjoyable ride.

This is not my favorite Porcupine Tree album. It´s a bit too ambient for my taste. I prefer the shorter tracks to the long ones and that´s always a bad sign. It is a good album though just not excellent. 3 stars is deserved for The Sky Moves Sideways. People who enjoy the Italian band Nosound should listen to this Porcupine Tree album as there are many similarities even though I think Nosound is a bit better.

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Send comments to UMUR (BETA) | Report this review (#171430) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, May 18, 2008

Review by Certif1ed
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
1 stars Blow me Sideways

Opening sounding something like The Orb, phase 1 of the title track has some quite nice spacey sounds - but what happens? There's a bad edit, where the music stops, and then it goes into something resembling WYWH Pink Floyd - you can hear what PT are trying to achieve, but it's like the rock and roll feel has been surgically removed - everything sounds a bit too pristine and somewhat unmusical.

It's not Prog Rock either - it's a slowly shifting pattern of two chords, over which not a lot happens in sumptuous instrumentation. It's not involving or journeying, like a Hawkwind album, not mesemerising like The Orb, and has none of the feel of Floyd (but then, who has?). It's kind of nice, but not engaging or interesting, musically, and there's no feel of composition or improvisation. In fact, it's downright boring.

After a mere 7 minutes, I'm edging closer and closer towards the Skip button, as the endless-feeling dirge continues on and on and on... it's like Barclay James Harvest on mogadons. But I stick with it, and lo! There is finally a change at 8:30ish to a pop/disco kind of thing with wooey noises - like a kind of disco Hawkwind or Ozric Tentacles, with a terminally repetitive bass line and quite the most horrible guitar tone I think I've ever heard. I am seriously not digging this pop music or its vulgar, sterile, derivative sound.

Fast forward, and there's a kind of floaty flute thing going on around 12:45ish - but if you dig floaty flute music, then Gong would probably be more your cup of tea (sic). This is an extended jam that increases in intensity for a couple of minutes, then strips it all back in time for a reprise of the opening material - but does not ever develop the music progressively - hence not Prog Rock. As for heavy - well, it's hardly heavy considering what else was around in 1995, so methinks this is miscategorised.

Continuing the Pink Floyd theme, specifically with The Wall in mind (there were a lot of nods and winks to The Wall in the previous piece), Dislocated Day starts off with precisely the same musical idea - a pair of chords. This is followed by an Eastern-sounding riff that someone will probably tell you is based on some mode or another - but from listening to the compositional qualities, I'd suspect that this is an accident not by compositional design. There is little compositional design at work - this is the work of the modern day bluffer, and the end result is 1990s psychedelic rock, for this is the same compositional method as that revered genre.

This stays in the same ballpark for the remainder of its time, and does not progress.

Moon Touches Your Shoulder is in a slightly different vein - the two chords are now picked. OK, make that 3 - E, A and D, the simplest chords on the guitar, even if notes are left out to modify them slightly. Still reminding me a bit of Wall-era Floyd, but not as interesting. This drags on until 2:40ish, where the keys join in to make a new texture, but this is real wrist-slitting stuff. It kinda reminds me a bit of OK Computer Radiohead - but obviously not in a good way. It's like Radiohead might have been familiar with Porcupine Tree and decided to do it properly. The only new material left in this piece is a dull as ditchwater riff around 4:50 that's used to burn out.

Prepare yourself is mercifully short - but seemingly pointless. A delayed acoustic/electric guitar duet based around a single chord with a descending bass line, filled with bluff. A kick joins in, and I'm preparing myself that this might be the intro to the last piece... well, sort of.

When phase 2 of the title track insinuates in (it doesn't kick!), it's a let down, and any potential feelings of continuity are lost. If you've heard phase 1, you know what you're in for - more Floyd, Hawkwind, Orb and Ozrics, more floaty keys, but thankfully, no more disco, from what I can tell.

However, it's pure psychedelic rock, not Progressive Rock - so don't get your hopes up for some Heavy Prog, coz it ain't here.

This album also consistently bores the hell out of me, so I'm rating it as poor - I couldn't find anything to like except some of the sounds, and I'm quite capable of making those on a synth or guitar myself.

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Send comments to Certif1ed (BETA) | Report this review (#189744) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Review by poslednijat_colobar
PROG REVIEWER
1 stars Porcupine Tree is already band, instead of just side project by Steven Wilson. It's already professional act, instead of amateur. But it's not quite obvious with the music. This means the transition will be very hard... After so pleasant Up the Downstair, we have to listen to such a exhibition made by Porcupine Tree. What we have here? An interpretation of Wish You Were Here by Pink Floyd I think! The structure is almost exactly the same; but regretfully, it's not only the structure. Of course, there is something different moments - I cannot understand what are these techno (or house) moments here. They are combined with some inappropriate folk moments. I thought we speak about progressive rock music or I am wrong! This album make me nervous not because of admiration, but because of irritation. The Sky Moves Sideways - Phase 1 begins with the same slow saturated sound like Shine on You Crazy Diamond (part I - V) and then continues with this stuffs (techno or house) I mentioned above! The second song is the most awful on the album - Dislocated Day - it begins like Welcome to the Machine and then we ought to listen to constant repetition for 5 minutes. The Moon Touches Your Shoulder - oh this is homonymous Wish You Were Here song, isn't it?The last one The Sky Moves Sideways - Phase 2 is the second Shine on You Crazy Diamond or part VI - IX. But it contains some themes from homonymous Wish You Were Here song. Somewhere around the album you can feel themes from the Atom Heart Mother suite - just awful! Here comes the moment I want to tell something to all readers of this review - the music is not exact the same, but it's structure and correlation to each other is exact the same. If the moment in The Sky Moves Sideways - Phase 1 is in one way, in The Sky Moves Sideways - Phase 2 it's correlation to the first one is like in Shine on You Crazy Diamond (part VI - IX)'s correlation to Shine on You Crazy Diamond (part I - V). The other direction of my review is the sound. It's too spicy. It's converted to the other way. I have the feeling that it's the opposite to Wish You Were Here! I fell that if we have a recording tape we can find some themes upturned if we led the tape play on the other side. On most parts of the album the sound is like upturned. The majority of the people would say it's great album, but not someone who's favourite album is Wish You Were Here (like me). The sole album by Porcupine Tree I can't listened to! I like the recording tape to be playing on the wright side! Sorry, 1 star!

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Send comments to poslednijat_colobar (BETA) | Report this review (#196981) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, January 03, 2009

Review by The Truth
COLLABORATOR Post/Math Rock Team
5 stars In my opinion the best Porcupine Tree album is, not Deadwing and not Fear of a Blank Planet, but The Sky Moves Sideways. From the epic title track it starts with to the improvisation Moonloop this album is amazing. Dislocated Day is where they show they can do heavy prog to me the first time (Other attempts weren't very good) and Moon Touches Your Shoulder is a song reminiscent of Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here. Prepare Yourself is actually a nice acoustic break that eventually turns into Phase 2 of Sky Moves Sideways which once again is amazing. Stars Die is also a highlight, this really good song sounds like it were done in a coffee shop yet it still has the rock taste. Definately a masterpiece!

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Posted Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover Team
5 stars The sky moved sideways! It really did when I truly listened intently to this unique recording. "The Colour of Air" instantly seduces in vaporous caresses, assorted sonics spew a dreamy electronic horizon, far ahead into the wild blue prog yonder where certain musical heritage lessons were well learned and most of all, the spirit soundly understood. Pink Floyd's legacy is unparallel in music as thousands of bands worldwide were spellbindingly enthused by the psychedelic bliss, at times even with a "religious' fervor that verged on fanaticism. "I Find That I am not Here" where the suave vocals appear at the perfect time, building like a Mason, far from the murky Waters and on the Wright path, alluring, cosmic, floating like a fantasy blow up doll in an new swimming pool, where Time and Money mean really very little and one can Breathe again , finally! "Wire the Drum" chugs along like a monstrous derailed train , Colin Edwin's bass bopping uncontrollably , Wilson unleashes a guitar foray with laser-guided menace but the bass is still conducting the charge, savvy percussion work adding spice to the brew. A mega PT track this is! A tortured chaos ensues with devastating audacity, guitars slashing with flair, the dastardly bass still cajoling almost insidiously, swiftly veering into another illuminated vector-sector as Barbieri squeezes out some insane keyboard electronics, more Eno than Rick Wright . "Spiral Circus" bathes in surreal swaths of effects, heavily ambient until the acoustic guitar strums into the spotlight , showing the sheer musical knowledge that Wilson so clearly possesses, a master of discovering new twists on an old scene that many had thought arrived at an inspirational dead end. The gentle symphonics are spellbinding, audaciously attractive, fondling the beauty in a deep synthesized embrace. From this point on, the level of musical luminosity only increases but by quantum leaps and bounds as "Stars Die" is a thing of agonizing splendor catered to lovingly by a melody that eschews all the agony and ecstasy of life and sadly, death. Wilson has the detached timbre in his passionate singing that only further enhances the lyrical depth of his craft, disenfranchised to a degree but nevertheless astutely mirroring the apathetic society we now see self-destructing around us. Well, Wilson knew then (in 1994) what we know now! That proves that he is a "thinking" artist as opposed to a mechanical musician, experimenting with moods and atmospheres, as espoused on the mindblowing "Moonloop", a concert favorite where Wilson soars into the most far-flung psych-drenched furrows one can possibly conceive, a lesson in controlled insanity, wrenching wretched passions, again there's the hypnotic Edwin bass intertwining sinuously, pointing ahead .A mood change halfway, directs into a more sinister chill out, doom-laden riffs, swarthy synth tapestries draping the way, progressively (did I say that?) increasing in volume, breadth and width, foreshadowing their future harder direction. How can anyone not be enthralled? Again, Wilson knew! "Dislocated Day" provides a return to the bass infested groove jungle albeit in a more upbeat tempo, raging yet again, a Wilson fret solo winking at old Carlos Santana, howling some semi-blissful pain. "The Moon Touches Your Shoulder" is pure unadulterated psychedelic ennui that would have made Syd smile , sort of a dreamy disturbance with detached determination, sonics galore. The Sky Moved Sideways again with a second part suite beginning with the longest track "Is.Not" , a 12 minute space-rock adventure that would easily compete against all the Gong/Hawkwind/Eloy/Grobschnitt/Floyd/TDream catalog, forging into new textural territories that even have strong classical structuring, a "galactic symphony" as some would like to better call it, yet still spicing it up with some devious sections such as "The Great Gig in the Sky" style aria refrain sung here so briefly by Suzanne Barbieri but adroitly passing the torch to an incendiary guitar solo that sizzles in phosphoric euphoria , a Wilson pedigree moment, I assure you! The man is a phenomenal axe slinger, powerful, technical and extremely gifted in diversifying his palette of sound (Fripp has been around in No-Man, so Wilson again, knew!). "Off the Map" is the final "au revoir", a brooding Gilmouresque escapade into large slabs of bluesy redemption, a whirlwind storm that has no shame, no ego, no fear of any blank planet or any deadwing in the skies, ominously foreseeing no in absentia while the fans await the "next big thing"! Wilson will keep them coming!!!!!!!! The sky did move sideways , it did, I saw it! I heard it and I felt it !5 firmaments askew

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Posted Sunday, May 03, 2009

Review by progkidjoel
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars Porcupine Tree ? The Sky Moves Sideways (2CD Remaster, released 2007)

Porcupine Tree's "The Sky Moves Sideways" is truly a special album; here we see Porcupine Tree fully coming into their own as a prog band. More complete than the two albums which preceded it, here we see Steven Wilson developing as a guitarist and a vocalist. The album is spearheaded by "The Sky Moves Sideways", both phase one and phase two. Although the main attraction, the space between is filled with lovingly crafted tracks. My favourite album from Porcupine Tree so far (I'm still missing a few), The Sky Moves Sideways is a true masterpiece of prog.

--- DISC ONE ---

1. The Sky Moves Sideways [PHASE ONE]

Beginning with Tangerine Dream-esque ambient psychedelic keyboards and drums, many complain that this into lasted far too long. Clocking in at around four minutes before the track proper starts, they aren't wrong. Don't get me wrong; what leads in is a lovely space-rock odyssey, and really does build up excellently for the track. Once the proper track begins, you'll be greeted by the unmistakable vocals of Steven Wilson. Strongly followed by melted guitar chords and the same drum pattern, the track is beautifully overlayed by Richard Barbieri's first truly excellent use of synthesizer ambience. Eventuating into a short guitar solo, this is but a glimpse of the technical prowess Steven Wilson developed years later. Its important to mention that during the chorus of this track, Steven Wilson's vocals are stronger than they've ever sounded, and by stronger, I mean heavier and deeper.

This is a nice change from Steven's usual soft vocals, which I am also a fan of. At around the 8:30 mark, this track completely changes pace. What could be described as techno follows, and is incredibly different to most of what Porcupine Tree produce as a band. The bass lines here are great, and once again, it's the synth work that makes this track. Indian drums also supply this track a beat for a short amount of time. Soon after, the track is filled with complicated synth and guitar work, which works in tandem with the continuing bass line to create something truly special. Another guitar solo follows, although in a much less controlled, and much more distorted manner.

Continuing and leading into a synth-produced flute riff, this track continues to build in volume and intensity, reaching a climax at around the 14:40 mark. After this, ambient noises flow for another minute, leading into a repeated acoustic guitar chord riff, which is also amazing, and somewhat reminiscent of the middle section of Pink Floyd's "Dogs". The stereophonics here also create a wavy, confusing effect as the guitar chords flow from side to side in a quick, yet slow manner.

Truly an unmissable Porcupine Tree track, this is nothing less than amazing and should be heard by every PT fan, and indeed, every prog/space rock/psychedelic fan.

5 out of 5.

2. Dislocated Day

A massive change of pace from the track which came before, "Dislocated Day" opens in a stereotypical phone ring, and is followed by Steven Wilson's voice as if through a telephone. Far heavier than the opener, this track has insane guitar chords and heavy drums. Somewhat tedious in its repetitiveness, this is by no means a bad track, although a little hampered by its continuity. Another disorienting guitar solo fills in this track, fleshing it out and giving it a very chaotic feeling. Featuring great lyrics like most of Steven Wilson's work, this is another quite good track if listened to in moderation.

4.5 out of 5.

3. The Moon Touches Your Shoulders

An excellent track, this is a small glimpse of the sound Porcupine Tree fully adopt for their future albums such as "Stupid Dream". Dynamically perfect, Steven's echoing vocals are perfect in contrast to the softness of the acoustic guitar work. Eventuating into a louder track, followed up with background electric guitar chords, this continues in a similiarly excellent fashion all track. Picking up around 2/3 of the way through, this proves itself to be another excellent odyssey into the world of Porcupine Tree. Another guitar solo fattens this track up, making it a full-fledged masterpiece. Closing in a heavy guitar riff, this track feels as if it was building up momentum for this moment over the past five minutes, and it was sure as hell worth the wait.

5 out of 5.

4. Prepare Yourself

The shortest track on this album also gives hints to the power Porcupine Tree will develop in years to come. Slowly acoustic and electrically brutal at the same time, this contains a signature guitar SW guitar solo, and is quite a good lead into Phase Two. Nothing special though.

3.5 out of 5.

5. The Sky Moves Sideways [PHASE TWO]

The second part of this prog epic is every bit as good as the second. Beginning in an even more slow and ambient, this eventually leads into another Barbieri keyboard overture, and these overtures really are what made this album. Part two is much slower to reveal itself than part one is, although just as good in every way. Also coming into shape at around four minutes, this track becomes much more direct than part one with its heavy rock riff. Also featuring some vocal work from Richard Barbieri's wife and a truly magnificent guitar solo, this Phase stands very well on its own. The bass adds a hypnotic feel to the softness of this track, although it is loud at the same time in an odd way. At around 12 minutes, this track picks up into the album's best moment in my opinion; the truly majestic guitar solo Steven Wilson lays down with complete ease above the crashing drums which began the album and similar keyboards. A truly epic ending to a truly epic album, this is where Porcupine Tree fully came into their own. An unmissable track, and the closer to the album, you simply have to hear THE SKY MOVES SIDEWAYS in full.

5 out of 5.

Closing comments: This is a rare find; a mathematically perfect album. Fully measured out, the two phases are perfectly spaced by the three central tracks, which provide an interesting mid-section amongst the two phases of the epic. Perhaps Porcupine Tree's "Close To The Edge", this album is as lovingly played and produced as it is experimental, and that is saying a lot.

--- DISC TWO ---

Feel free to stop reading here if you are only buying the one CD version. Although unnecessary to enjoyment of this album, CD2 features some great extras for a PT fan. This includes the original version of The Sky Moves Sideways, Stars Die (A track previously only available in Porcupine Tree's compilation "Stars Die: The Delirium years"), a 16 minute improvisation and another great track, this is a great extra and will give listening value to the album, but don't break your back (or the bank) trying to get a copy of this extra disc.

1. The Sky Moves Sideways [ALTERNATE VERSION]

The first recording of The Sky Moves Sideways is interesting none the less, although unessential unless you are a completionist. Featuring the original lyrics, the vocal tempo is also different during the first phase, and the only other real difference is the ending, but this is nothing to write home about. Perhaps more interesting to a PT veteran, I personally didn't find this to be necessary, although still an interesting listen.

4 out of 5.

2. Stars Die

A great track, it's a shame this was never released as a regular album track and only available either here or on the compilation I mentioned earlier. Truly fantastic, you really should here this track if you haven't already. Opening in a typical Porcupine Tree acoustic guitar fashion, this track continues lovingly with an undertone of independent bass harmonies and signature PT vocals overlays. Continuing in the same fashion, this track was composed for the fans and it's easy to see that careful consideration was taken into its writing. Bridging with a small silence and then re-opening in a fully-fledged version of the opening complete with synths, bass and great drum work, this track closes with a soft bang. Its there ? you just have to be listening. A short guitar solo helps conclude a truly excellent track. Make sure you hear this one!

5 out of 5.

3. Moonloop [IMPROVISATION]

A 16 minute improvisation, this has its moments, although they are buried in the (obviously) unrehearsed mass of music. Semi-enjoyable, not a really good track though. Also only for completionists/massive PT fans.

3 out of 5.

4. Moonloop [CODA]

An instrumental, this is a good track. Repeating the same riff the entire way through, this was the product of the improvisation which preceded it. Building up quite slowly like most Porcupine Tree songs, it eventually picks up into a metal-ish riff and continues to gain volume and tenacity over its five minute lifetime. Once again, nothing to write home over, good none the less.

4 out of 5.

A very solid package, as a 1CD, this deserves a 5 out of 5. as a 2CD package, this also deserves to, if only for the DIGIPAK presentation and inclusion of "Stars Die".

Whatever format you buy it in, just make sure you do.

-Joel.

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Posted Sunday, July 12, 2009

Review by Any Colour You Like
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars The Sky Moves Sideways [2004 Remastered Edition]

Let's not beat around the bush here. Porcupine Tree's 1995 release, The Sky Moves Sideways is an epic. If Up the Downstair was a lucid psychedelic journey, then TSMS is an expansive spaced-out trip of the highest caliber. There is an obvious focus on creating long, heavily layered rhythms and textures that surpasses anything PT did before or indeed achieved since. With that in mind, do not expect easily accessible and recognisable "song" formats here. For this is the Wish You Were Here of the 90's - without the ballad. You'd better believe it.

The album opens with the spacey epic, The Sky Moves Sideways Phase One, which mixes lush synthesiser and keyboard tones with thumping bass lines. The beauty of TSMS is the way the song seemingly morphs and progresses, as one section just merges into another. It never strikes the listener as being very high impact, it instead builds impetus, releasing it in long, sustained instrumentals. Be patient, and TSMS will reward you. Dislocated Day features a typically dream-like soundscape, complete with nonsensical lyrics and decent, if repetitive guitar work. Gavin Harrison's drumming adds an extra spice and crispness to the audio which the original version does not have. Despite this, it not a very dynamic piece and is probably the weakest song on the album for it. The Moon Touches Your Shoulder however is a much more amiable piece. Soft, delicate tunes waft the listener away, Wilson's' vocals are atmospheric and subtle, giving the track a tangible day-dream aura. Before you realise, you segue into Prepare Yourself, a short filler that leads into the second phase of TSMS. In the original edition, you would now encounter the 17 minute ambient space-jam, Moonloop, however the remastered edition features Moonloop on the second cd- so don't worry, it's there. TSMS Phase Two takes off from where the first phase ended, in typical psychedelic fashion, it is a journey in itself, building and releasing musical tension as the musical narrative unfolds. Again, it pays to be patient with TSMS, hasty listeners will pay to take in the subtleties of the ambient soundscapes. If you let it consume you, TSMS will be one of the most enjoyable PT experiences you can have.

However, if you thought the trip had ended, think again. The 2004 re-issue features over an hour of bonus and re-worked material, including the entire Moonloop Improvisation and the charming Moonloop Coda. It also contains a 34 minute alternate version of the title track, complete with subtle musical and lyrical differences. Experienced listeners may enjoy the variations on a theme, however, new listeners should take the time to acquaint themselves with the full material first, as it is more polished and accessible in length. The bonus disk also features the track, Stars Die, a typically lucid psychedelic piece with a lovely vocal chorus. While not essential to the casual listener, any fan of early PT should seek out the bonus disk for the beauty of Stars Die and Mooloop Coda alone.

In conclusion, there are only a few words of caution to be made. Firstly, this is not an album for people who have short attention spans. With lengthy and abstract instrumentals, it is easy to see why some would not like TSMS, it is repetitive in parts, it is lengthy, it is lyrically dense. But for those moments where the music transports you somewhere else, where the sky does move sideways - that is what makes this album pure musical gold.

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Posted Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Metal Team
4 stars When it comes to reviewing this album, the first thing necessary to point out is which exact version is under inspection. In my case, that's the lavish 2003 2CD reissue.

My history with this album has taken quite a journey. It's been a 10 year trip starting with a lukewarm appreciation of the original CD, going through growing approval of the 2CD version, and then getting a real boost 2 years ago when the misses pointed out that this album contained some of the most moving music she had ever heard. The voyage has come to a provisional stop with the 5 dazzling star quote at the moment of this review.

The first part of The Sky Moves Sideways is one of Wilson's longest and most beautiful compositions ever, covering the whole range of lavish space-rock, melancholic vocals, dreamy Pink Floyd slide guitar chords coming right from the Dark Side of The Moon, and plenty of influences from ambient electronic music, dance and kraut rock. Not a moment is wasted and it's hard picking highlights, though the dance middle section that starts with the groovy bass guitar loop and ends in an orgy of sound is a fine candidate. Even after countless listens to both this track and Shine On from PT in decades past, I fail to see the resemblance that is so frequently referred to, Of course there's the general structure of the album, but Kraut rock, Tangerine Dream, Hawkwind and the Ozrics seem much more obvious comparisons. Of course all those are either directly or indirectly influenced by the Floyd. But then almost everybody is.

Dislocated Day walks around Middle-Eastern music flavours, both in rhythm and in melodies. Given that Arabian music often thrills my feelings even more then prog, metal or post-punk do, this track always sends shivers down my spine. I think there must some sort of direct connection between the power of Arabian scales and rhythms and my deepest emotions.

The Moon Touches Your Shoulder is a slow grower, as much in its structure as when it comes to recognizing the value of it. It starts as a moody ballad with blue musings from Wilson and gentle minor chords on the acoustic guitar. First keyboards and spacey guitars join in, then the bass and that lingering pace of the drums, similar to the dragging beat in the first part of the opening track. It ends in a noisy battle of sounds, led by a majestic and very proggy guitar riff.

Prepare Yourself is a nice little kraut excursion and serves as an intro for part 2 of The Sky Moves Sideways. This is the only piece on the album that goes through some ups and downs. It opens attractively enough in lush ambient fashion, but then there's the main section dominated by the electric guitar. The guitar has clearly been recorded through the sound output channel of the amplifier (instead of using mikes in front of the speaker) and it gives that typical brittle crispy sound that results grating on the ears here, even though the actual riffs and solos are fine.

The second CD offers an alternative recording of The Sky Moves Sideways that has some alternate guitar takes and arrangements. A fan bonus really. The real value comes from the addition of the beautiful space-pop song Stars Die and the two edits from the Moonloop improvisation that I will rave about some other time. Both tracks are the only ones that have the entire Porcupine Tree band of that era in place, featuring Chris Maitland on drums and percussion.

The second CD more then evens out the rare dips at the end of the original release. And as an entire 2CD package this could deserve 5 stars. 4.5 for the original album.

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Posted Monday, January 11, 2010

Review by EatThatPhonebook
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars 4.5 stars really!!

PT here arrives at their second masterpiece, preceded by On a Sunday Of Life... and followed by all their latter albums from the 00's. 'The sky Moves Sideways" is a true classic, which is strongly influenced by Pink Floyd and the whole Space Rock genre in general. The structure is very similar to "Wish You Were Here", in fact, like the essential prog masterpiece, it starts and ends with a very long song, both of the same title. "The sky moves Sideways" however, is very different: many electronic moments as well as Heavy Prog ones, which an unusual touch of mystery, both the beginning and the end of the album (phase 2 however is inferior to 1, in my opinion). is a journey through a parallel universe and/or space, a journey towards the point of no return of man. But the album is not only the two epic title tracks: "Dislocated Day" is a fascinating song, with mystery and true prog combined. "The moon touches your shoulder" is a fantastic "ballad" very spacy in some moments and haunting whatsoever. Not to forget the 17 minute "Moonloop" an improvised piece that flows perfectly, together with spacy(yes, again) moods, and true psychedelic rock.

An unforgettable album, essential to whoever wants to try PT and space rock generally speaking.

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Posted Thursday, April 29, 2010

Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Thundering guitars

The Sky Moves Sideways was the most impressive PT release to that point. Wilson created a 1990s space-rock opus rivaling the Ozrics and Djam Karet's best works. Full of gargantuan guitar space stations and pulsing beats, riveting effects, quiet interludes and Floydian leads, it is an unqualified black-light classic. My favorite part is the slow, melancholic guitar leads of the first 8 minutes of the title track, while some of the louder chaotic and repetitive parts drive me nuts more than they impress me. Frankly I think the guitar and drums are overly plodding/obnoxious in some spots. I have slowly warmed to it over time but there is one important thing which keeps me at arm's length. People reference Floyd often with 90s PT as I just did myself, but there's always been a flaw to that reference in my view. Floyd albums connected effortlessly with me on an emotional level both musically and in the themes. Those albums could reduce me to tears at times and the melodies and writing were timeless. Sky Moves blows me away in it's scope but it really moves me very little in any emotional way which is a problem. Some compare this to "Wish You Were Here" but comparing the two track for track in my mind, it's just not a contest. It's a nice long feast of heavy riffs and solos, well played and suitably epic in stature, but I can only count on a "good" and occasional spin from Sky. Impressing me alone is not adequate. On later albums Wilson would connect emotionally with me and the results would be more rewarding.

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Posted Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Review by Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars On The Sky Moves Sideways Porcupine Tree is in the midst of its transformation from Steve Wilson solo project to fully-fledged band - and in doing so, the group produce an absolute classic of tranquil, relaxing space rock. Incorporating carefully-chosen influences from the dance music and indie rock of the era whilst keeping the Floydian space rock approach central, Wilson, Barbieri, Edwin and Matland produce vast soundscapes which prove that proggy space rock albums don't have to be about nostalgia or retro-prog revivalism; though this music is clearly descended from the likes of Pink Floyd, it is very much of its era and takes that musical style forward as opposed to wallowing in the past.

When you set this against Pink Floyd's The Division Bell from around the same time, the extent to which the predecessors had fallen behind the times and lost touch with what was happening outside their bubble becomes strikingly obvious; Porcupine Tree, conversely, demonstrate on this album an awareness of a range of popular music forms - rock, pop, dance, trance, etc. - beyond the genre niche they perform in, and yield music which does not spurn the occasional connection to the wider world beyond prog whilst being comfortable in its identity as prog. I heartily recommend the 2CD version of the album; it is extremely unusual for me to bother listening to "alternate versions" of songs at all, let alone be in the mood for listening to one immediately after listening to the second half of the standard version, but in this case the possibilities explored in the title track are so compelling that I'm glad to.

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Posted Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Review by AtomicCrimsonRush
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Team
3 stars "The Sky Moves Sideways" is the psychedelic era of Porcupine Tree glorified with lengthy jamming spacey explorations. The remastered digipack double CD features 2 extreme psychedelic bookends on CD 1 of the title track that will really test the patience of some listeners. They build gradually with spacey atmospheres, Tangerine Dream textures, and psych prog ambience. I had heard these before on the "Stars Die" compilation, but in context they take on a new life. This is some very dreamy music with Vangelis tones and soundscapes of classic Pink Floyd or Camel.

The album features a number of shorter length tracks that are more accessible, 'Dislocated Day', 'The Moon Touches Your Shoulder', and 'Prepare Yourself'. Really they are not the drawcard though as the more lengthier pieces are incredible by contrast. The dreamy Floydian soundscape of 'The Sky Moves Sideways Phase Two' is the masterpiece with extended soaring lead guitar work, gorgeous vox from Suzanne Barbieri, and gorgeous swathes of divine keyboards.

CD 2 has the epic monster length 'The Sky Moves Sideways - Alternative Version' which is an unedited version of the title with extra vox, and different structure, no waves, heavy percussion, and not as spacey, and the wonderful melodic 'Stars Die' follows that I have heard many times on other releases. 'Moonloop ? Improvisation' clocks 16 minutes of very dreamy music to sleep with, and is followed by 'Moonloop ? Coda' to close a very solid Porcupine Tree album.

I am still a bigger fan of the more recent PT but this is nevertheless a mesmirising album with a relaxing spacey atmosphere throughout.

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Posted Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Review by CCVP
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars Majestic journey through the skybound bays

Porcupine Tree, in the late 1980's, started as a small project of Steven Wilson's whose objective was to simply play good psychedelic-influenced music. Quite a noble task, if you ask me, since the genre has been decaying since the mid 1970's (even though some say that true psychedelic music died to never come back in the late 1960's) and enjoyed little to no appreciation among the general public. Regardless of those challenges, Steven pushed onward and kept his project going, eventually getting together with former Japan keyboard player, Richard Barbieri, whose combined love for psych, krautrock, sonic experimentations and other such things made come into being a more mature Porcupine Tree sound with their 1993 album Up the Downstair.

Downstair, however, although already having some of PT's most striking characteristics (imposing keyboards, dreamy guitar lines, inspired compositions and a new outlook to psychedelia and psychedelic rock), was not quite as fully developed as it could be, musically speaking.Yes, it is a strikingly good album (specially the 2005 re-release), but still the record wasn't as good as it could be; the band's next release, The Sky Moves Sideways, came to both fill all the gaps in Up the Downstair and take their music way beyond their 1993 opus ever was.

Indeed, wile in Up the Downstair the band (still mostly a one man's band, with Richard still on the side) focused on both the experimental (with songs like Up The Downstair, Small Fish and Burning Sky) and accessible (with songs like Synesthesia and Always Never) side of psych (which eventually divided the album in two parts; the firsts songs were more accessible and the lasts had a more experimental edge), in Sky Moves Sideways Porcupine Tree switched to their full- blown prog gears.

In spite of the musical excellence achieved on this album, it gets some considerable criticism from some for the direction Steven and Richard decided to take on Sky. Here, they went for symphonic and atmospheric soundscapes, a side of space rock made famous all around the world by Pink Floyd with the albums Dark Side of the Moon and Wish You Were Here; the latter in particular is seen as the album's main source of inspiration, specially due to its song organization. Some even put Sky Moves Sideways as a plagiarism of Wish You Were Here, but I disagree. First of all, Pink Floyd was not the only band that made that kind of music during the 1970's, they were simply the most famous (other big names of psychedelic prog who also went down that road are Nektar, Eloy and Hawkwind); second of all, other bands managed to renew this kind of space rock and could have been (as I believe they are) influences in this record (the biggest name here is Ozric Tentacles); third of all, Pink Floyd's music is much more melodic and simple than the music presented here, which is stylistically more similar to German artists such as Neu! and Ash Ra Tempel, even though Sky is not as experimental.That said, I would also not go so far as to say there is not influence whatsoever from Pink Floyd, but the only part where it is clearly visible is in the first few minutes of The Sky Moves Sideways - Phase 2.

Now, to talk about the music more directly, it would be important to note that the version I have is the 2000's re-release, with two CDs. Starting with the album proper (the first disc), the whole thing sounds like as if it is one whole piece of music, with one song melting and merging into the other perfectly, even if they have different tones, which is the case with The Sky Moves Sideways - Phase 1 (where the keyboards and synthesizers are in the forefront and the song develops slowly, adding electronics, percussion and flutes) and Dislocated Day (where the guitars take the lead, playing eastern/Indian melodic lines and the atmosphere is heavier). It is as if Dislocated Day is the aftermath of the title track's first phase.

The other three songs, however, build up towards having the album's conclusion with the title track's first phase. Actually, Prepare Yourself sounds much like an introduction to the final song, with Moon Touches Your Shoulder being the bridge connecting both ends of the album. maybe because of that, Moon Touches Your Shoulder is so diverse, having both the dreamy motifs akin to the album's main song, the heavier guitars similar to the ones in Dislocated Day, plus some samples from God knows where.

I should also point out that the original versions of The Sky Moves Sideways has considerable influences from German artists like Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schultze.

The second disc is also really good, though not as good; it also has the only sub-par song in the whole album: the alternate version of The Sky Moves Sideways. Starting with the alternate version, I do not think it does justice to the original for many reasons. First off, the keyboards lose most of their place, now serving merely as something to hold all the band through the song. Secondly, there is too much guitar; now there are some parts where that works out great, like in the beginning, where they overlap each other, complementing their melodies, but for the most part they replace the keyboards and can't create the same mood the keys did. Another negative point about it is that it seems that some parts have been changed, cut or discarded and replaced with different musical ideas, mostly in the song's second phase. Lastly, and this may be because the keyboards have been diminished, the whole song sound flat, as if the whole body of sound lacked depth. Don't get me wrong here, the song IS NOT bad, it's just not as good as the original version, which I consider to be perfect as is.

Stars Die is the odd one out here. It does not sound like any most of the album for being a more straightforward song, being more similar to something that would belong in Porcupine Tree's next album, Signify, being stylistically similar to that album's epic Waiting, phases one and two. However, Stars is also not as depressive and dark as Signify is and it also has the space-sounding guitars and keyboards as the rest of the album.

Lastly, the album's most experimental song in the original version has been relocated to the last places of the second disc, divided into two songs and profoundly changed, what can be clearly seen if you compare it with the original version. In spite of that, I view this as something very positive for two reasons: 1 - it allowed for the original album to maintain its flow and be as coherent as possible; 2 - it made possible to change some parts of the song that were unnecessary, although it would have been great to have both new and old versions. Nevertheless, I feel that Steven Wilson, nowadays, is not as happy with the end result in the older version of Moonloop, because it has been changed two times, the first in the American release (where the song was cut down by half) and the second in the re-release (where the song was completely remade).

The remaster of this album also made it possible to vastly improve its sonic proprieties, much like it was done with Up the Downstair. In Sky Moves Sideways, however, there was not such an extensive re-recording, with most of the work being made with already existing recording material.

Rating and Final Thoughts

Psychedelic rock is one of rock's oldest genres and, for being around for over 50 years, it is hard to innovate, to make something new or to reinvent something that has been done to death. Even though they tried just that in 1993, it was only with their 1995 album that PT would accomplish that. Sky Moves Sideways in an impressive piece of space rock that manages to impress even the most experienced listeners and amaze those in search of some deep experience in the field of progressive rock and beyond. A perfect album nobody should miss.

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Send comments to CCVP (BETA) | Report this review (#866456) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, November 25, 2012

Latest members reviews

2 stars Well I decided to move to porcupine tree's earlier stuff and I thought I would start out with "the sky moves sideways" their well known album in the early 1990's. And the first thing that came through my mind when finishing this album is "Pink Floyd ripoff". I'm not a huge fan of pink Floyd but ... (read more)

Report this review (#1312296) | Posted by stefanblazanovic | Wednesday, November 19, 2014 | Review Permanlink

3 stars As much as I love Wish You Were Here/Pink Floyd and Porcupine Tree, I cannot really find myself enjoying this album as much as I hoped. For me, Porcupine Tree's really amazing material comes from Stupid Dream onward, with quite a few outstanding tracks coming from the period before then. Perhaps the ... (read more)

Report this review (#1285948) | Posted by Obsidian Pigeon | Monday, September 29, 2014 | Review Permanlink

3 stars This review is for the 1995 release . . . The third full release from Porcupine Tree, see some lengthy tracks in the form of The Sky Moves Sideways - Phase One and Two, also the 17 minute Moonloop. After the bands' first two releases, I'm still waiting for that critical moment, when I can tr ... (read more)

Report this review (#1091315) | Posted by Ozymandias | Tuesday, December 17, 2013 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Porcupine Tree's The Sky Moves Sideways is an awesome album to have come out in the 1990s. It's more of a throwback to the great 1970s prog, especially Pink Floyd. On the original release, the title track AThe Sky Moves Sideways is split into two tracks, one on each side of the album. This tr ... (read more)

Report this review (#912616) | Posted by wehpanzer | Monday, February 11, 2013 | Review Permanlink

2 stars The Sky Moves Sideways represents the band's attempt at Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here. It has a very similar album structure, with the title track in two parts which bookend some "shorter" songs. The songs themselves are incredibly atmospheric, which is indicative of most of the material of that a ... (read more)

Report this review (#880096) | Posted by Mr. Mustard | Friday, December 21, 2012 | Review Permanlink

4 stars 8/10 Hey, this is where Porcupine Tree finally get it right, huh? Although the band's last album under the banner of a simple project of Steven Wilson The Sky Moves Sideways already has future members - Richard Barbieri on keyboards and electronics (although he has since made ​​an ... (read more)

Report this review (#587980) | Posted by voliveira | Wednesday, December 14, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars "The Sky Moves Sideways" was one of the first pieces of music by Porcupine Tree that i heard, and quite recently actually. i was introduced to PT by a "sounds-like" suggestion by a music website which recommended this album alongside Deadwing (this was just before the release of The Incident, ... (read more)

Report this review (#476042) | Posted by sv_godspeed | Tuesday, July 05, 2011 | Review Permanlink

2 stars The Sky Moves Sideways ? 1995 (2.4/5 almost 3 stars) 8 ? Best Song: Dislocated Days And here gives way to fullblown ambient, and I don't enjoy it very much at all. The two phases of the title track drift in and out of time-delayed weather channel pussyfutting at nearly all times. But I'm ge ... (read more)

Report this review (#459147) | Posted by Alitare | Saturday, June 11, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars The Sky Moves Sideways was the first album by Porcupine Tree to break away from the solo efforts of the previous two albums, and it definitely shows. The title track opens and closes the album, which is very similar to Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here. The song itself takes many listens in or ... (read more)

Report this review (#375388) | Posted by thesleeper72 | Friday, January 07, 2011 | Review Permanlink

5 stars "Perpare Yourself" for The Sky Moves Sideways The Sky Moves Sideways is classed as Porcupine Tree's third studio album. There are 4 versions of the album: 1) 1995 European release, 2) 1996 US release, 3) 2004 expanded & remastered edition and 4) 2004 3LP edition. Here I am reviewing the 20 ... (read more)

Report this review (#288820) | Posted by Chris M | Thursday, July 01, 2010 | Review Permanlink

5 stars The Sky Moves Sideways is my favourite Porcupine Tree album along side Fear of a Blank Planet. The reason i brought the 2004 re-master edition was from the recondmmendation of people from this site. As soon as i listened to it, i was blown away. There is not much i can say that has not alread ... (read more)

Report this review (#255796) | Posted by Mitch17 | Saturday, December 12, 2009 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I can't believe I haven't reviewed this yet, as it was for a long time, the only Porcupine Tree album I had listened to consistently. I have since become something of a fan, finally connecting to most of their other material. However, this was my first encounter with this band, back at the beg ... (read more)

Report this review (#241192) | Posted by infandous | Thursday, September 24, 2009 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This album is incredible. It is the third studio album by porcupine tree. The album opens and closes with The sky moves sideways. This track is truly incredible and s one of the best ever recorded by porcupine tree. Dislocated day is a shorter and more heavier track but is still incredible.The moo ... (read more)

Report this review (#171459) | Posted by | Sunday, May 18, 2008 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Neo Progressive Hard Rock at PEAK levels ....... Porcupine Tree , what can i say about this creature and never been said . Like the porcupine , you can see it occasionely but cannot touch it or follow it . The right name to the right team . Between Har ... (read more)

Report this review (#166594) | Posted by trackstoni | Monday, April 14, 2008 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Here we have one of my favorite recordings from one of my favorite progressive rock bands. The Sky Moves Sideways and it's precursors Up the Downstair and Voyage 34 make up the majority of Porcupine Tree's most psychedelic music, and this style of space prog is just what I want from the genre. Ob ... (read more)

Report this review (#162591) | Posted by stonebeard | Sunday, February 24, 2008 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I have a strange feeling about this album because of its different issues. And even if I also bought the 2003 remaster, I still prefer, by far, the first US version wich is for me more equilibrate. Star dies merges well at the end of The Part 1 of Sky moves and a shorten version of Moonloop avoids ... (read more)

Report this review (#154940) | Posted by ProgLine | Sunday, December 09, 2007 | Review Permanlink

2 stars The sky moves sideways is basically passable space rock, and not too much like Porcupine tree's current output. Most of the songs here are very nice in parts, but overlong. The opening minutes of the title track are excellent, for instance, but the final section stretches on for too long. The 2 ... (read more)

Report this review (#153215) | Posted by La fraisne | Friday, November 30, 2007 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Porcupine Tree offer an acutely melodic, fluid, harmonious excursion into the realm of expanded-consciousness with this one. The Sky Moves Sideways is Wilson's first album with a faithful 'official' band. Two years before this one, Up The Downstair was recorded featuring future band-mates Richard ... (read more)

Report this review (#128919) | Posted by Shakespeare | Monday, July 16, 2007 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I give this album five stars on the strength of the title track - it really is incredible, especially the 34 minute version, as the ending is a bit less vague. The instrumental prepare yourself, moonloop and stars die are all great songs (although i don't listen as much as the title track), an ... (read more)

Report this review (#126481) | Posted by Brutha2 | Thursday, June 21, 2007 | Review Permanlink

3 stars "The Sky Moves Sideways" is the most Floydian influenced piece of work that I have heard from a band(other than Floyd that is...)and I mean that in a positive way. While the album has some very strong tracks it also tends to be a little short on musical ideas and instead takes several main th ... (read more)

Report this review (#118755) | Posted by madgo2 | Tuesday, April 17, 2007 | Review Permanlink

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