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Porcupine Tree - Signify CD (album) cover


Porcupine Tree


Heavy Prog

3.85 | 1364 ratings

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5 stars One of the biggest surprises in all of Prog Archives would be the low rating of Porcupine Tree's Signify. For me this wonderful album realizes the full potential of Wilson's psychedelic years. The excellent song writing and clever arrangements had always been there, but were never played by a real band. It always lacked a bit of bite and punch. Not so on this album which is both written and executed to perfection. To see this album rated as lowest PT studio album (debut excepted) defies all logic.

After a bit of ambient fun the albums kicks of with the kraut trip Signify. The track grew out of an improvisation around Hallogallo but only retains the bouncy rhythm of it. The basic riff is transformed into a Rush meets Hawkwind trip. Great space rock.

Next on is Sleep of No Dreaming. Like much of the music here, it's a dark and sensitive track with a gorgeous chorus that has a very eastern flavour to it, similar to Dislocated Day.

Even though the two previous tracks are excellent, they are surpassed by the stellar Waiting phase 1 and 2. The way the guitar solo bursts out on top of the brooding music in phase 2 is one of those rare moment in rock that make me shiver from delight. There is no other album from Porcupine Tree that connects with me in such an emotive way.

Right, we're only in for a bit more then 20 minutes and this album deserved five stars already. And the party isn't over yet. Tracks like Sever and Every Home is Wired are a first forebode of things to come on the ensuing album Stupid Dream, with their acoustic guitar driven songwriters approach they would have fit perfectly on SD or LS.

They are balanced against instrumental tracks like Idiot Prayer and Intermediate Jesus. Especially this last one, which also features in its full 15 minute glory on Metanoia is the second highpoint of the album. This song is built around a very gentle bass line and amazing percussion from Maitland. Wilson spins his most out-there solo from his entire career around it. Simply superb.

Light Mass Prayers is a minimalist ambient piece that was written, strangely enough, by the drummer. It's well place on the album to let us catch a little breath after the cosmic rock that came before and the darkest matter it introduces.

Porcupine Tree is often criticized for being too much in debt of Pink Floyd. That is certainly true for the previous album Sky Moves Sideways. But I fail to see why on this album. Apart from a few touches of slide guitar that indeed come straight out of the Dark Side of the Moon this is a very personal blend of many styles, ranging from ambient to pop, kraut, prog and space-rock.

Bonnek | 5/5 |


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