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Steven Wilson, Prog heritage and legacy

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jampa17 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote jampa17 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Steven Wilson, Prog heritage and legacy
    Posted: June 24 2013 at 10:20
Originally posted by ole-the-first

Originally posted by Dean

Wilson worked with Portnoy in 2003 (OSI)

Moreover, he participated on 'Systematic Chaos'. And Jordan Rudess played keyboards on his solo albums.

He participates in the song "Repentance" in which he asks for forgiveness for bashing DT music. He said that he just meant that he didn't lilke DT music, but never meant to attack the musicians or individuals or talent or concept of the band. It was just that he doesn't considerate it the same genre that PT. Some kind of lame excuse like that.

That being said. I go away because I think this discussion is turning like a gossip magazine.

Cheers
Change the program inside... Stay in silence is a crime.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Sequined_Tears Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 27 2013 at 17:55
I cannot reply to this thread as a seasoned musician, but merely a music lover.

I have been listening to PT since 1998.  A lot has changed since PT began.  I have met him twice and spoken to him in some detail about his music during his Lightbulb Sun tour while I was living in London.  This is what I got from his conversation.  MY interpretation, no quotes so don't cyber slap me if I step on sensitive toes.

Steven Wilson has a lot of pans on the fire for a reason.  He does not deny he wants to be a successful musician.  Like most artist, he wants to make a living doing what he loves.  He did not want to work a day job.  So, once Lightbulb Sun hit the scene, he was learning what the new generation liked and wanted.  For instance, during my backstage discussion a 13 yr old kid entered and was praising him for Four Chords Made A Million, my least favorite song on LIghtbulb Sun.  When the kid left, SW just pointed toward the door and said "See?".  His appreciation of SW was completely different than mine.   SW was seeing what the young people liked and was beginning to adapt.  I thought Lightbulb Sun was very different than anything that came before it and it made me nervous.  He was very humble in regards to his guitar playing.  He, to my knowledge, has never claimed to be a guitar god of any sort.  He learned guitar so he could get the music in his head down on paper.  The reason he continues to release under Steven Wilson, Blackfield, etc. is he can use those releases as an outlet to play the music he truly loves.  The PT that once was is now filtered through his side projects.  The 'new' PT is aimed toward the visual, MTV-loving emo kids that want to listen to dark, obscure music you don't hear on the radio, but is still packaged neatly for a consumer driven industry.  I love dark music as much as anyone can, but I still want to hear multiple time changes, difficult instrumentation, simplistic, soulful solos.  The younger generation can depend on PT to deliver dark, meloncholy music, but still in a way that they can process.  Most young people want something they can catch, hold and copy if they desire.  So, he left the spaciness behind and added a Helmet (metal) like sound to appeal to the new generation....and it totally worked.

Now, for the long time lover of what PT once was, this is kind of a smack in the face.  Why step on the toes of the fans that appreciated the poetic, dark and beautiful music that made PT in its humble beginnings?  Can you see most kids appreciating Buying A New Soul, Signify, Sleep of No Dreaming, The Sky Moves Sideways?  Some obviously, but not enough.  I battled with the idea that one of my favorite composers intentionally sold out.  However, now that I am older, I can understand a little more. 

As long as Steven Wilson continues to play the music he loves most, I cannot deny him.  One can argue TRTRTS and what it entails.  I personally like it and I am glad Alan Parsons had a hand in its creation.  Drive Home is a bit british pop as one mentioned, but there is something about the simplistic, yet gut-wrenching guitar solo by Guthrie that just keeps me cranking it louder and pushing on the gas pedal a little harder.  

Let us remember that Steven Wilson has mad respect for another man that has been accused of selling out.  His name-Robert Fripp.  I love King Crimson and I am a huge fan.  Now when I see him it is confusing at best.  The last time he opened for SW, I don't think he really played much of anything.  He would pick a few bars and fiddle with knobs for two minutes, pick, fiddle, pick, fiddle.  The last three times I have watched him, he has had his side or back to the audience.  He made his money, now he just wants to do his own thing, love it or leave it.  I think Steven Wilson will follow a similar path.  I do not enjoy Fripp as I once did, but I will always have respect for him as a musician.  I will do the same for SW...no matter what.
I threw five clocks down on my bed
The chimes danced out on golden threads
And turned to footprints on my wall
Sequined Tears began to fall...
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Slartibartfast View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Slartibartfast Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 27 2013 at 18:29
You can analyze music to death or you can just judge it on whether or not you like what you hear.  For me I enjoy what he has done more than Flower Kings or Spock's Beard, etc.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Catcher10 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 27 2013 at 20:19
Originally posted by Slartibartfast

You can analyze music to death or you can just judge it on whether or not you like what you hear.  For me I enjoy what he has done more than Flower Kings or Spock's Beard, etc.
 
Pretty much this..not so much analyze the music but trying to analyze the person is well an excercise in futility....this could go on forever.
I listen to all his work because I like it...
 
Trying to decide if he feels he is progressive or not or if someone else is or not that he thinks is or not or who he is influenced by or not...is kinda like this sentence, very batty Wacko.
      
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Post Options Post Options   Quote rogerthat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 27 2013 at 23:36
Robert Fripp a sellout? Boy, some people do have pretty lofty standards. 
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Post Options Post Options   Quote richardh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 28 2013 at 06:42
Interesting post Sequined Tears ( and watch out for all those bricks that will now fly out past your head from Fripp fanaticsLOL

I actually only started liking PT when they released Deadwing. I guess I'm just a kid at heartSmile
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ole-the-first Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 28 2013 at 06:52
Originally posted by JaySpiral

Luminol may as well be straight from Fragile by Yes

Nothing similar. Luminol has more chances to be labelled an X-files theme rip-off than from anything of Yes. At least one moment in Luminol sounds really like X-files to me.


Edited by ole-the-first - July 28 2013 at 06:52
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Second Life Syndrome Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 28 2013 at 07:19
I find myself enjoying SW's latest album less and less.  It does just seem like a rip-off, as it's so dang predictable.  You can always think, "Oh, and here comes the mellotron solo"...The music isn't very inventive, original, or even interesting.  I still think the title track is one of the best songs I've heard this year, though.  He did his own thing there.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote tamijo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 28 2013 at 09:22
I'm only concerned with what I hear, sometimes an interview can spice things up a little, sometimes a story about the creation of the music, can do the same.
But in the end what matters is what comes from the speakers.
Regarding SW, he made 2 fine retro albums lately, was at the show, it was great.
But In general, I find PT, and No Man to be more interesting music.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote silverpot Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 28 2013 at 11:06
It must be pretty damn hard to be a prog rocker these days. Whatever you do, you'll be accused of ripping off the old heroes.
Wilson happens to be a fan of PF, KC and Genesis, among others, so he follows in their footsteps, very much to my joy( and a bunch of other Floyd fangirls and boys).

Now, what is truly new and innovative today, without being unlistenable?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Metalmarsh89 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 28 2013 at 11:21
Originally posted by ole-the-first


Finale of 'Watchmaker' was definitely inspired by death/doom metal.

There's a riff in there that sounds very much like one from a song on Iron Maiden's "A Matter of Life and Death". 'The Legacy' I think was the song.


Edited by Metalmarsh89 - July 28 2013 at 12:12
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Argonaught Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 28 2013 at 11:37
Originally posted by ole-the-first

Originally posted by JaySpiral

Luminol may as well be straight from Fragile by Yes

Nothing similar. Luminol has more chances to be labelled an X-files theme rip-off than from anything of Yes. At least one moment in Luminol sounds really like X-files to me.

I'm with Ole-The-First on this one. The fast part(s) of Luminol and not Yes-like at all, while in the slower part there is indeed a passage that reminded me of the album Yesterdays', which is a compilation of the pre-Fragile yes.



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Post Options Post Options   Quote Argonaught Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 28 2013 at 11:44
Originally posted by silverpot

It must be pretty damn hard to be a prog rocker these days. Whatever you do, you'll be accused of ripping off the old heroes.
Wilson happens to be a fan of PF, KC and Genesis, among others, so he follows in their footsteps, very much to my joy( and a bunch of other Floyd fangirls and boys).

Now, what is truly new and innovative today, without being unlistenable?

The answer to your conundrum is improvisation. When you are listening to a good piece of let's say modal jazz or fusion, you are way too busy following the melody lines and harmonies, created by several musicians simultaneously, so you have no time or spare mental capacity to worry about having heard some of the passages somewhere before. 

P.S. It's always been hard to be a good prog rocker, or good anything.  
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Argonaught Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 28 2013 at 12:11
Originally posted by Second Life Syndrome

I find myself enjoying SW's latest album less and less.  It does just seem like a rip-off, as it's so dang predictable.  You can always think, "Oh, and here comes the mellotron solo"...The music isn't very inventive, original, or even interesting.  I still think the title track is one of the best songs I've heard this year, though.  He did his own thing there.

A strange thing: I continue to say that I like Luminol, Holy Drinker and Watchmaker, but somehow I am not listening to these anymore - haven't listened for months. It seems that my brain is duly recognizing these songs as "good" on their objective merits, but my spiritual receptors refuse to tune in properly. 

In the last couple of weeks, apart from listening to my daily staple of contemporary jazz, I have gone through the full spectrum of the musical genres: Brahms, David Garrett, Amiina, Florence & The Machine, lots of Jobim, Cibelle, Black Twig Pickers, Nickel Creek, Silver Convention (say what you will), real early and real coarse U2, Trurl, Bacamarte, McCartney .. can't force myself to drop the stylus on Luminol. Just doesn't sync right with somehwere deep inside. 

Early PT was experimental enough to justify the rudimentary musicianship, so I have no problem with it.

In Absentia through FOABP period was Wilson's, IMO, pinnacle, where the band had come up with excellent sound and great arrangements; and I do believe Nil Recurring and Anesthetize are true masterpieces of pedigree prog.

As for his solo career, I have to agree: Wilson is becoming a more and more anal sound engineer, while the new musical ideas are no longer a part of his offering. His band is beginning to remind me some kind of a (super)human orchestrion contraption. Thumbs down.    




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Post Options Post Options   Quote TheGazzardian Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 28 2013 at 13:13
Originally posted by silverpot

It must be pretty damn hard to be a prog rocker these days. Whatever you do, you'll be accused of ripping off the old heroes.
Wilson happens to be a fan of PF, KC and Genesis, among others, so he follows in their footsteps, very much to my joy( and a bunch of other Floyd fangirls and boys).

Now, what is truly new and innovative today, without being unlistenable?

You will only find answers to that if you listen to lots of new music. I listen to new stuff all the time and it doesn't have to invent new notes for me to think, "Hmm, I have never heard anything just like this before."
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Post Options Post Options   Quote rogerthat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 28 2013 at 20:04
Originally posted by silverpot


Now, what is truly new and innovative today, without being unlistenable?

I don't know about the truly part of it, but Everything Everything though you are probably going to complain about the vocals.  But it isn't as if Wilson is the direct descendant of Ronnie James Dio either.  I don't even know what's new in electronic, there must be tons of fresh and innovative music out there.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote richardh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2013 at 01:27
I've said it before but trying to work out what is truly new and innovative is a completely pointless exercise. Something always begat something which begat something and so on. Like anything you either enjoy it or you don't. 
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Post Options Post Options   Quote sukmytoe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2013 at 01:55
I try to leave the people that make the music out of it these days and just focus in on the music. I made the mistake (to my mind) of delving too deeply into the characters making up old Genesis (Gabriel era) and I came away not liking Tony Banks very much at all - that was, for a while, problematic to me in that it did impact my feelings for the music of the band. I've kind of put that all in a closet and in doing so have been able to continue enjoying what is one of my very favorite bands (Gabriel era Genesis).
I have most of PT's work as well as Steven Wilson's outside of PT and I must say that I do enjoy it. Maybe the thing is that many people who are exceptionally good at what they do - to the level of genius or almost there - are eccentric and are self opinionated. To delve into a musician's character is possibly a mistake in that perceptions about a person can damage ones appreciation of the music that he makes. One only has to look at Geoff Tate where the reception of his new release was mainly ice cold - I believe it to be the better of the two new "Queensryche" albums - but if I took sides or study what in fact happened relating to him and Queensryche I may well also have slated his new release. I stay out of the politics and listen to the music.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote infandous Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2013 at 08:39
I love the Flower Kings, but in some ways Wilson was correct in his comments (not the part about them contributing to the death of the genre, but about them using all the cliché's of the genre........very true, and a large part of why I love their music).

Wilson IS arrogant and very sure of himself, and this is probably a large part of why he's been able to be successful as a full time musician.  Let's face it, he has probably gained more popularity for his musical endeavors than Roine Stolt can ever hope to attain (though Transatlantic probably gets close........though it's fan base is reserved for the hard core symphonic proggers).

As Dean mentioned earlier, he did explain his comments in later interviews as well as explaining why he now feels comfortable doing "retro prog" stuff.  He never actually apologizes for the comments, but I'm not sure he really needs to.  Stolt has moved on, Wilson has moved on, and it's really just some forum members (some of who probably never liked Wilson's music to begin with) who keep beating this dead horse.

All my opinion of course, and in no way should my comments be taken as assertions of fact.........much like Wilson's comments 7 years ago Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Quote silverpot Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 29 2013 at 12:40
Originally posted by richardh

I've said it before but trying to work out what is truly new and innovative is a completely pointless exercise. Something always begat something which begat something and so on. Like anything you either enjoy it or you don't. 


That's about what I actually meant. I was adressing those who critizise Wilson, thinking he's too retro.

I do listen to all sorts of new music but if I try hard enough I can always find something in it that reminds me of some earlier stuff. Wink
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