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Porcupine Tree - Signify CD (album) cover


Porcupine Tree


Heavy Prog

3.85 | 1364 ratings

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3 stars Some morbid fascination keeps me coming back to this cd. I put it into my player, one evening, and let the music drift while I was playing some silly computer card game. By the end of the cd, I was bleary eyed, feeling slightly disoriented, almost feverish. It was as if I'd just come off some bad trip and was gasping for air (and, no, it had nothing to do with the silly card game).

Admittedly, there's nothing even remotely original about this album: it is floydian to the core, right down to the vocals. The distorted guitar solos, the spacey synths, the simple drumming, the perennial bluesy choruses and the overall sullen quality of the compositions: everything here smacks of Roger Waters big time. Yet, it's amazing how easily it draws you in, how convincingly it conveys that eerie atmosphere - something almost resembling hallucinatory delerium. Through out the album, you feel the despair, the claustrophobia, the pathos of artificial paradise (be it drugs or religion), the desperation of only finding pleasure in pain. In short, the hopelessness of it all (" fast, look beautiful, die young..." thunders a preacher over some demented, trance-like drums pounding at a furious pace).

Despite all the floydian clichés and the heavy downer I get every time I hear it (who knows, perhaps even because of it), I still think this album pulls it weight alongwith the best of them. It is a mighty powerful cd to be heard in its entirety. My initial reaction was to give it 4 stars. However, as is often the case with the FLOYD's material, no matter how genial it sounds at first, you can only hear it so many times before your interest starts to dwindle. I grant it 3 stars for the band's ability to paint so vividly the picture of decadence with relatively few new elements.

A fine album, very effective and loaded with climactic musical moments, but stay away from it if you're in the least bit depressed. If you thought Roger Waters' genius for gloom & doom couldn't be topped, wait till you hear PORCUPINE TREE on "Signify". Come to think of it, this is probably the best album Waters never made.

Hibou | 3/5 |


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