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Porcupine Tree - Nil Recurring CD (album) cover


Porcupine Tree


Heavy Prog

3.95 | 536 ratings

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Queen By-Tor
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Recurring indeed.

Porcupine Tree's latest EP was released publicly only very recently, and based on the reviews it had been getting as a order-off-the-website-only deal I was expecting the thing to blow my friggen skull open when I gave it a spin the day I found that it was finally waiting for me on the store shelf. While the EP certainly has it's charms and works very well as a partner to its big brother, Fear Of A Blank Planet, it seems the the hype was a bit too high.

In other words, it's not a masterpiece on par with Close To The Edge. That said, it's still a worthy disc.

Certainly tight in it's musicianship, Nil Recurring deserves most of the praise it receives. The opener (and title track) NIL RECURRING is a very well done instrumental featuring one Mr. Robert Fripp of King Crimson, and he certainly makes his mark. The song comes off as exactly what it is, a PT-KC collaboration that allows both guitar virtuosos to noodle. Running strait into the song is the next track, NORMAL. Basically 'Sentimental Pt. II', NORMAL recycles Sentimental's chorus and some riffs as it makes its way along. Not in any way the same track however, NORMAL has it's own flavor -- as though it has the same narrator speaking from a different chapter of his life. CHEATING THE POLYGRAPH is next, and this one's another good one. Reminiscent of Rush's 'Jacob's Ladder' in terms of structure (one big dark overture with some lyrics to start it off), this one chugs along with some very catchy instrumentalism until it reaches it's eventual end. The album ends with the dark WHAT HAPPENS NOW, which basically reprises not only the ep, but 'My Ashes' from Fear... as well. Similar in style to 'Sleep Together' this one has it's charms in it's mix of flavors.

On a side note -- Packaged in a spiffy ''Super-Jewel-Case'' this one is quite pleasing to the eyes with it's extension to FOABP's artwork.

While the music here is quite good as a partner to the album that goes with it, it's not quite as strong on it's own as some of PT's other EPs have been. Certainly a good extension to FOABP (does the phrase 'extended play [ep]' ring a bell?), but not a good stand alone. Not really essential but certainly a good buy if you really loved FOABP or even liked it. If you want nothing more to do with that album then avoid this. Cautionary note, though -- Don't buy this album expecting completely new material.

I'm always tight pressed to give an ep more than 3 stars... so being a good one, that's what this one gets.

Queen By-Tor | 3/5 |


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