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THE PINEAPPLE THIEF

Crossover Prog • United Kingdom


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The Pineapple Thief picture
The Pineapple Thief biography
Founded in Yeovil, Somerset, UK in 1999

Bruce SOORD of VULGAR UNICORN starts his solo career with this band, which is inspired as much by PORCUPINE TREE as by his old group. PINEAPPLE THIEF has a mix of prog with some space rock. Balance, beauty, and modernity are all to be found in the plush sounds of PINEAPPLE THIEF ... great melodies, songs and plenty of atmospheres. This band will appeal to fans of RADIOHEAD, but other occasional influences show through that are less obvious but apparent (PINK FLOYD, U2, OZRICS and KING CRIMSON).

With their second release, PINEAPPLE THIEF (PTh for short) have reached a state of grace with their frenzy guitar drawings and acoustic sets, using Mellotron to the better effect without ever sounding retro. Indeed, and more than with the two previous albums from PINEAPPLE THIEF, "Variations on a Dream" is brimming over with its creator's talent and is impressive with its incredible commercial potential. Thus, PTh has elaborated a "double layer album", in which the prog fan will enjoy the fine-tuned production and the arrangements, while the pop rock lovers will be delighted with accessible and addictive songs. This is the type of CD that one plays over again as soon as it ends. A little miracle of balance, and a place in my Top 5 for 2003.

Highly Recommended..!

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THE PINEAPPLE THIEF discography


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THE PINEAPPLE THIEF top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.42 | 103 ratings
Abducting the Unicorn [Aka: Abducted at Birth]
1999
3.26 | 103 ratings
137 [Aka: One Three Seven]
2002
3.25 | 176 ratings
Variations On A Dream
2003
2.58 | 68 ratings
12 Stories Down
2004
3.29 | 121 ratings
10 Stories Down
2005
3.77 | 191 ratings
Little Man
2006
3.88 | 261 ratings
What We Have Sown
2007
3.67 | 233 ratings
Tightly Unwound
2008
3.57 | 296 ratings
Someone Here Is Missing
2010
3.71 | 209 ratings
All The Wars
2012
3.67 | 211 ratings
Magnolia
2014
3.94 | 343 ratings
Your Wilderness
2016
4.03 | 314 ratings
Dissolution
2018
3.63 | 147 ratings
Versions of the Truth
2020
3.66 | 50 ratings
Give It Back
2022
4.02 | 82 ratings
It Leads to This
2024

THE PINEAPPLE THIEF Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.60 | 5 ratings
Live 2003
2003
3.57 | 14 ratings
Someone Here Is Live
2010
4.25 | 12 ratings
Live At The 013
2013
4.09 | 11 ratings
Live 2014
2015
4.03 | 43 ratings
Where We Stood
2017
3.94 | 16 ratings
Hold Our Fire
2019
4.05 | 30 ratings
Nothing but the Truth
2021

THE PINEAPPLE THIEF Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

THE PINEAPPLE THIEF Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.98 | 56 ratings
3000 Days
2009
3.29 | 9 ratings
Introducing ...The Pineapple Thief
2014
4.67 | 6 ratings
How Did We Find Our Way: 1999-2006
2023

THE PINEAPPLE THIEF Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

5.00 | 1 ratings
Sherbet Gods
2000
3.84 | 10 ratings
4 Stories Down
2005
5.00 | 1 ratings
Limited Edition Free CD
2006
4.29 | 17 ratings
Shoot first
2008
3.90 | 29 ratings
The Dawn Raids (Part 1)
2009
3.85 | 27 ratings
The Dawn Raids (Part Two)
2009
3.61 | 18 ratings
Show A Little Love
2010
4.33 | 6 ratings
Nothing At Best
2010
3.96 | 24 ratings
Build A World
2013
4.50 | 2 ratings
The Frost
2023
3.00 | 3 ratings
It Leads To This
2024

THE PINEAPPLE THIEF Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 It Leads to This by PINEAPPLE THIEF, THE album cover Studio Album, 2024
4.02 | 82 ratings

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It Leads to This
The Pineapple Thief Crossover Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars "It Leads To This" is the latest THE PINEAPPLE THIEF offering released in 2024. This is a band who just has not stopped the last seven years, even during the pandemic they may have been the most active band out there. Their last album "Versions Of The Truth" was a solid record but I like this one better. It's so old school here for Bruce and the boys with all the tracks ranging between 4 1/2 to 6 minutes and almost all the music is mid-paced. But it's how they contrast sections and change things up that makes this work. Those trippy passages, the heaviness or the experimental bits all work as contrasts to the melodic and mostly mellow music provided here. I really like this record.

It's pretty cool in the liner notes to see seven pictures of what is supposed to be the same person from when he is a boy all the way to being an old man. A gradual process. This is such a consistent record maybe the most consistent of their whole catalogue. Picking a top three would be hard but the one song I seemed to resonate with the most was "All Thats Left" the way it starts out like a whisper to shouting as it were later on.

I have been on THE PINEAPPLE THIEF bus for almost 20 years. When Gavin came on board for the album "Your Wilderness" I think it was like catching lightning in a bottle. With Bruce's already emotional lyrics, then bringing in a world class drummer to the fold, well that first album with him will always be my favourite. The live tour that followed gave us "Where We Stood" a top three for me and again this is an inspired band right here saying look at us now! And how about the wordless vocals from Bruce so unique to those two albums. My top three would also include "Little Man" from 2006 which encapsulates all that went before with some of their best songs and emotion to burn here.

Yes time to get off the bus, it's time. I do recommend this one quite highly though if your already a fan.

 It Leads to This by PINEAPPLE THIEF, THE album cover Studio Album, 2024
4.02 | 82 ratings

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It Leads to This
The Pineapple Thief Crossover Prog

Review by BBKron

4 stars Another great album from veteran prog band The Pineapple Thief lead by composer-gutarist-vocalist Bruce Soord, who have really been on a roll since the addition of drummer extraordaire Gavin Harrison (Porcupine Tree) in 2016. This new album is even stronger than their quite good previous couple albums, Giving it Back (2022) and Versions of the Truth (2020), but doesn't quite reach the pinnacle of Dissolution (2018), which I consider to be their masterwork. This album saw a closer working relationship between Bruce Soord and Gavin Harrison in crafting the songs for the album, actually writing together in the same studio for the first time. The album starts with Put it Right which sets the mood and atmosphere for the album with a soft understated cool, but dark vibe and develops into a slow boil throughout the song. But the album really takes off with the middle series of songs, starting with the title track and its blend of atmosphere, melody, and rhythms. The intensity builds with The Frost amid heavier riffs. Throughout, the understated vocals and melodies of Soord mixed with the dynamic drumming of Harrison, and the rhythms and riffs of the rest of the band create rich and satisfying soundscapes, even with the undercurrents of darkness and unease. This album is a real grower, in that it may not knock you out on first listen, but its subtleties and intricacies develop and is richly rewarding with repeated listens. The band seems even more of a cohesive coordinated unit than on previous albums creating a wonderful listening experience. My only mild criticisms would be that 1) it doesn't stray very far from what they've done previously, similar in style and substance (but so very well done), and 2) It just seems a bit too short (8 tracks, 40 min). It ends rather abruptly, and it just seems it could use one more song to round it out. All in all though, Another gem of an album. Best Tracks: It Leads to This, Every Trace of Us, All That's Left, The Frost, To Forget. Rating: 4 stars
 It Leads to This by PINEAPPLE THIEF, THE album cover Studio Album, 2024
4.02 | 82 ratings

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It Leads to This
The Pineapple Thief Crossover Prog

Review by David_ProgCritique

5 stars A highly anticipated record from the start of 2024, here is The Pineapple Thief back with 'It Leads To This'. So "what does this lead to?" Even if three years were necessary for the conception of this record, we cannot say that the members of the group were really idle during this period: for example, Bruce Soord (singer, guitarist) released his solo album 'Luminescence' last year, and Gavin Harrison (drums) was a little busy with another of his bands: Porcupine Tree . We are also entitled to wonder if the latter, since his arrival behind the drums, has not in some way become the star of the group, as his type of playing and his mastery of the instrument seem to put all the emphasis on world okay. Listening to 'It Leads To This', he captivates again, not because he takes all the light, but on the contrary by his very intelligent way of putting himself at the service of the compositions and the interpretation of the band. It is therefore as a true ensemble, where everyone takes part in the construction of the work, that we find The Pineapple Thief for a "collected" album made up of 8 tracks, lasting just over 40 minutes, and where precision is not (once again) lacking.

The album starts gently with "Put It Right", a melancholy track based on piano accompaniment highlighted by a superb drum groove. The title does not hesitate to leave space, takes its time, breathes, and this will be the case for other pieces throughout the album. And of course the production is 5 stars, each instrument, each intervention finds its place perfectly in a clear mix.

The sound hardens slightly with "Rubicon" where the guitars are out. And it is again the rhythmic changes printed by the drums which give a beautiful dynamic to the piece.

A great bass line supports the song "It Leads To This" throughout its duration, including during the excellent chorus. It's one of the most interesting tracks on the album which manages to combine a certain requirement in terms of implementation and a catchy melody.

Another single, "The Frost" seems to be more direct, more Rock? until you listen to the verses where the odd rhythm is crazy, before a chorus that immediately grabs the ear.

Return of this melancholy draped in high quality instrumentation, so characteristic of the group, on "All That's Left". Then a seemingly simple plan on acoustic guitar launches a more furious passage that is rather unexpected. This is one of Pineapple Thief 's strengths: managing to vary the atmospheres within the same title by playing with volume, sounds, silences.

These chords on the piano and this drum rhythm on "Now It's Yours" recall the Bowie of "Five Years". One of the most emotionally charged pieces on the record with sublime arrangements.

At the risk of repeating myself, what a drum groove again on "Every Trace Of Us"! This one is also marked by an interesting harmony on the chorus, the doubling of voices, a particularly aggressive bass, a bridge/solo of guitar and keyboards.

A beautiful acoustic guitar arpeggio opens the last track "To Forget", where Bruce Soord 's voice travels high to better support a beautiful emotion, and where the arrangements / mixing / interpretation combo once again reaches heights.

It's possible to criticize 'It Leads To This' for a lack of risk-taking, orchestral ambition or complete twist. No long epic here, nor any extended solos or barely contained rage. No, Pineapple Thief maintains a classy grace by bringing a care to his compositions that few artists are capable of achieving. The group masters its element, forging a mixture of complexity (rhythmic in particular) and quite admirable melodic purity. A falsely calm force in a way.

Review originally posted on www.progcritique.com.

 It Leads to This by PINEAPPLE THIEF, THE album cover Studio Album, 2024
4.02 | 82 ratings

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It Leads to This
The Pineapple Thief Crossover Prog

Review by The Crow
Prog Reviewer

4 stars After the uneven "Versions of the Truth", progressive veterans The Pinneaple Thief have returned with an album worthy of their legend!

Once again released by Kscope and produced by the group itself, this time they bring us an album that follows in the somewhat more direct and hooky wake of "Dissolution", and that although it does not reach the quality of this one, it does manage to offer a resounding album, very well composed and in which almost nothing is left over or missing.

As always, highlight the enormous work of Gavin Harrison on the drums, perhaps a little more restrained but just as effective, and the addition of Beren Matthews on the guitars, who is a very talented guitarist who has also accompanied them on tour for a few years now, and who can almost be considered the fifth member of the group.

So if you somehow lost faith in The Pinneaple Thief with "Versions of the Truth", I invite you to listen to "It Leads to This", because without a doubt it is going to become one of the best British progressive albums of 2024.

Best Tracks: Put It Right (I love the interlude of the song, which almost reminds me of Massive Attack), It Leads to This (a song with a lot of hook), The Frost (intimate and intense, pure The Pinneaple Thief), Now It's Yours (the slowest song on the album, but also one of the best) and Every Trace of Us (my personal favorite on the album, very intense and with an amazing instrumental section)

My Rating: ****

 It Leads to This by PINEAPPLE THIEF, THE album cover Studio Album, 2024
4.02 | 82 ratings

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It Leads to This
The Pineapple Thief Crossover Prog

Review by Deadwing

5 stars Their most mature album yet being a nice step foward from their previous effort. Gavin is excellent as expected, but it's great to see more presence from the other band members as well: Keyboards are more present especially in "Put It Right" and "Now It's Yours". Bruce this time focused more in lead guitar which gives us lots of nice chops and solos using his characteristic tone and you'll find some great bass grooves as well (such as in "All that's left").

If "Versions of the truth" was a mellower and more compact version of the band, this one, despite being a shorter effort, has more intensity and more elaborated tracks, although still no epics this time.

 It Leads to This by PINEAPPLE THIEF, THE album cover Studio Album, 2024
4.02 | 82 ratings

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It Leads to This
The Pineapple Thief Crossover Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Special Collaborator PSIKE, JRF/Canterbury, P Metal, Eclectic

3 stars One of the staples of modern British prog, at least on the more melodic side of things, THE PINEAPPLE THIEF dates back to the turn of the millennium and is actually celebrating its 25th anniversary as a band in 2024 and just like the similarly styled Porcupine Tree who both happen to share drummer Gavin Harrison since 2016, founder / vocalist / guitarist / keyboardist Bruce Soord never expected for the band to experience such longevity. But here it is, 2024 indeed and THE PINEAPPLE THIEF is releasing its 16th album IT LEADS TO THIS featuring its usual set of alternative rock mixed with proggy art rock.

IT LEADS TO THIS hasn't found the band reinventing itself into a technical death metal band or a Tuvan throat singing band or anything of the sort. On the contrary, this newest release finds the band basically returning to form with a set of eight catchy well crafted songs that take up a running time of just under 41 minutes. There also exists a CD boxset version that includes a bonus disc titled "Y Aqui Estamos" which features seven alternate versions of the tracks found on the main album release. I always pass on these unless the album is some sort of masterpiece of the ages that i can't get enough of.

One of the more commercial bands in the world of prog, IT LEADS TO THIS doesn't even really sound like prog that much at all really. Fortified by instantly catchy hooks, traditional alternative rock compositional styles, easily digestible poetic lyrics and in the last several years, a clear race to be the next Porcupine Tree as heard with Soord's Steven Wilson mopey singing style, the similar atmospheric elements and the alternating mellow neo-psychedelic cadences with the heavier guitar oriented alternative rock bits. As far as the progressive rock creds are concerned, there aren't many to be heard on IT LEADS TO THIS as the tracks are all on the shorter side with none extending past six minutes and no surprises especially in time signature deviations to be heard.

Nevertheless the album delivers nicely performed and recoded tracks for what it does. From the mellow mope of "Put It Right" to the ambient introduced "Now It's Yours," the band is all about generating moods and atmospheres rather than winning Olympic medals for technical wizardry. While that's all fine and dandy, the album is mostly set to the easy listening side of the prog universe, so much so that it rarely finds enough of those excitable moments when the alternative rock explodes into a frenzy of crescendoing thundering roar. And even when the rock parts are allowed off their tightly held leash the band never really lets loose. Gavin Harrison is touted as one of the greatest drummers of the modern age with gigs in not only Porcupine Tree but truly demanding acts like Dizrhythmia or King Crimson but on IT LEADS TO THIS he is woefully forbidden to cut loose.

THE PINEAPPLE THIEF has never really been my bailiwick as i tend not to follow these bands that pander to pop audiences that want to claim they're into progressive rock. Add to that i've never been keen for bands jumping on the Porcupine Tree copycat bandwagon as i've found none of them to come even close to the magnanimous heights of Steven Wilson's baby but that doesn't stop many from trying. It just doesn't seem to work outside of the original PT context. This is basically pop rock with a slight alternative edge and pseudo-prog creds mainly because of the atmospheres.

It's a pleasant enough album as the music is totally listenable but a bit too predictable and squeaky clean for my liking. In a genre that used to "progress" and undergoing unthinkable evolution (just look at the years from 1969 to 1974), there are pockets of the prog fringes that are all about milking it for all it's worth. There's a reason bands like Black Midi are the newest rage because they PROGRESSED! This just sounds like it's stuck in a time warp and can't get out. Decent but not anything i get excited about. Obviously there's an audience for this stuff or THE PINEAPPLE THIEF wouldn't be around all these years but what really surprises me is how easily fans will accept a stylistic approach that is so close to another pioneer and musically almost identical.

 It Leads to This by PINEAPPLE THIEF, THE album cover Studio Album, 2024
4.02 | 82 ratings

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It Leads to This
The Pineapple Thief Crossover Prog

Review by alainPP

5 stars 1. Put It Right begins very simply, bass, soft, catchy drums, timpani that keeps the rhythm, and bam a bit of piano with Bruce's voice eyeing the work of Steve WILSON; marshmallowy sweetness, ah this piano not heard enough in concert, well in the 1st row it's also obvious; latency during this time with a vibrato effect, the guitar which snatches a few notes from the ambient air; just sublime, this time seems suspended, and Bruce following the air; everything mixes admirably, a slap in the face for a melancholic radio edit track of great beauty; this ending which reminds me of a DIRE STRAITS title, memory 2. Rubicon sounds like the XTC, I can't help it, it smells hard; syncopated rhythm, progressive, already gripping; the chorus comes on, pop rock song in fluff, it imprints itself in your head; the air advances like a wave against the bank, Gavin breathes in a villain; impeccable, captivating 3. It Leads to This wow, yes you too? A bit of the JAPAN of the time, the metronomic rhythm, another tune that grabs you in the gut, how do they do it? Ah aha ah aaah; this riff, this synth which potentiates, latent, ambient, dancing, moving with this endless atmospheric riff which hypnotizes! Bar simplicity, gold, diamond 4. The Frost I listen to, I don't know what to write; it's just perfect, with the voice, the choirs, the drums, the riff which drives the rhythm even further into your cerebellum, this spleen guitar which melts suddenly; the break with the riff which launches a very fast layer of dripping synths but which makes the mouth water; this rhythm that returns, military air and it suddenly feels like The Edge

5. All That's Left spleen, progressive drift with a Japanese air; metronome pads, softness again, everything is calibrated to leave nothing to chance; a little acoustic guitar before the PORCUPINE TREE explosion, it vibrates, enjoyable; it looks like a theremin getting carried away, not possible but true, the hard, heavy syncopated sound before returning to the percussion 6. Now It's Yours less than 6 minutes for the longest title; dark, mysterious intro; well now it's up to you to tell me about your joy, your emotion: latency yes, mid-tempo yes, melting air yes, sexual softness yes, rare that I see so many things... yes; the piano and the guitar's lament become one; paf a heavy riff yes the prog can also draw from it, the guitar is ripped helped by the aggressive drums, the explosion like PINK FLOYD yes prog right inside we are; languorous tune which leaves and returns easily, hold the slide guitar which plays the interlude, what beauty this album makes 7. Every Trace of Us with still an XTC sound for me; it's catchy, rich, fruity, complex, full of ideas; I sit down for a drum solo which suddenly brings out everything precise but intense, the guitar vibrates, cuts, my legs don't stop moving; do they have something? In short, less good but crazier, I get lost 8. To Forget strumming guitar arpeggio; Bruce hoots or almost, it starts slowly, a little bass, a little pad, the guitar crying yes I mentioned U2 not by chance, the spleen is there; the rhythm sets up, that's it, Gavin's syncopated rap wreaks havoc again and Bruce's plaintive solo blows away the last reserve; concentrated modern prog that gets better with each listen, the magic is there. THE PINEAPPLE THIEF has released a perfect album with titles that swell, which reveal their charms like burning lava; from meh not bad they go to damn well done then magnificent, all in 5 minutes max, a slap in the face, an OMNI in 10 years. (4.5)

 It Leads to This by PINEAPPLE THIEF, THE album cover Studio Album, 2024
4.02 | 82 ratings

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It Leads to This
The Pineapple Thief Crossover Prog

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Ever since Steve Wilson put the Porcupine Tree on semi-retirement, its distant cousin The Pineapple Thief has firmly taken control of that particular style and not just because drum maestro Gavin Harrison moved over to fruitier pastures. Within the scope of a few months, main man Bruce Soord has released a solo album and a new chapter in the burglar's catalog, firmly stamping his creative credentials on a progressive rock current that has rarely seen as many summits as in recent years, as 2023 in particular really offered spectacular releases. Bruce is in fine form, arguably one of the better voices in prog, as well as a highly inspired guitarist and composer. The fact that his bandmates have cemented their relationship by sticking together through thick and thin, is quite revelatory and the proof is in the tangy pudding being offered up to fans of brooding, explorative and emotional prog. Eight tracks, a running time of 41 minutes and possibly their best effort yet. The set list seems like a chronological flow, at least in terms of musicality, but also lyrically.

The opening salvo "Put It Right" well, puts it just right, indeed, with a captivating lament with no hackneyed swells of over produced symphonics, quite to the contrary, a very minimalist arrangement where the two powerful stanchions are up front, namely Bruce's pleading voice and sobbing guitar, while Gavin holds down his usual 'less is more' polyrhythmic propellant , while Jon Sykes keeps the low end just right and Steve Kitch adds the needed melancholic ivory colourations.

Well, eventually things come to a point of having to take the leap of fate and cross the "Rubicon", the band boldly vaulting into an athletic maelstrom of frizzled sound, showcasing brazen guitars that pound in unison with strenuous syncopation. The platform is set to emote in muted rage, as if the fear of the unknown can galvanize anyone into anything, when properly motivated.

The title track keeps the rhythmic fricassee cooking on bubbling simmer, the guitar and keyboards infusing with each other, cavorting like long lost lovers, pretty much at the opposite end of the lyrical content which favours disillusionment over harmonious convergence. Life is a constant turmoil but eschewing the silence and express oneself is the only true relief.

"The Frost" is a back-and-forth affair between soft and hard, starting out nice and balmy, trees fluttering in the windswept bay, suddenly bullied by a sonic hurricane blast that freezes the limbs and surely the resolve. The sprightly contrasts are a perfect foil for delving into the frailty of feelings, going from incendiary to glacial, rollickingly expressed by the icy electro keyboards and freezing guitars as well as the incandescent drum performance from Mr. Harrison.

The ultra romantic "All That's Left" bathes in a crushingly beautiful melody, stylishly sung and loaded with a plethora of refined details, a first half drenched in dreamy melancholia, deeply pained, and ultimately, with a forsaken urgency that keeps rising like a thermometer dipping into a spewing volcano. The electric guitars are outright churlish, and the synth slashes cut like a finely honed razor, bleeding out agony profusely, as symbolize by the percussive droplets outro.

Generating even more inner pain, "Now It's Yours" is the longest track, running 6 minutes (if you include one second of silence), building up another sour vortex of sound and ultimate fury, but here the whirlwind takes on cyclonic proportions with a monster second half that detonates with little restraint, booming drum tangents and impetuously shameless guitars pummelling each other into abject submission. The generational passing of the baton of ongoing failure is an eternal human characteristic, it seems. So much improved technology, so little happiness. A futile relay race to hell, that finish line tape will be the end. Amazing track, though.

And what will be left behind, you may ask? "Every Trace of Us" walks the rhythmic gauntlet, with an impish bass shudder and a Peart-ian display from Gavin, as a tired Soord voice suggests a fluid sense of hopeless surrender, bordering on contempt at the immovable finality of progress. What advancement have we realized? Well, it does end suddenly ?

"To Forget" is a haunting weep, a majestic cry in the night that channels a Gilmourian outburst from the dripping guitar that wears emotions on its hand-cuffed sleeve, an overwhelmingly reflective survey of the human condition and the dysfunctional, disconnected, and desensitized standard that permeates our current society.

Easily on par with classic Pineapple Thief albums like "What We Have Sown" (2007), "Your Wilderness" (2016) and 2018's "Dissolution", proving once again that sorrow, agony, and war continue to plague our world and still providing some semblance of artistic integrity by expressing it without reserve.

4.5 never ending arrivals.

 It Leads to This by PINEAPPLE THIEF, THE album cover Studio Album, 2024
4.02 | 82 ratings

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It Leads to This
The Pineapple Thief Crossover Prog

Review by Southern Star

4 stars Bruce Soord has been busy, releasing a solo disc about 4 months ago, and now led his band in their latest offering. Soord is the king of "More is Less" with every note, and every sound seemingly important. Poignant and provocative tracks with a concise vibe which leans towards indie rather than prog, particularly with the album lacking the 10 minute epic (ala White Mist or Last Thing On My Mind). Put it Right is a wonderful opener, filled with silences and simplicity but still conveying thought provoking images. Rubicon includes a decent rock-out section and Every Trace of Us has a decent eye worm melody and some playful guitar work. The band is solid, but there is no denying this is all about Bruce's plaintive vox and Gavin Harrisons outstanding percussion playing.
 Abducting the Unicorn [Aka: Abducted at Birth] by PINEAPPLE THIEF, THE album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.42 | 103 ratings

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Abducting the Unicorn [Aka: Abducted at Birth]
The Pineapple Thief Crossover Prog

Review by Dapper~Blueberries
Prog Reviewer

4 stars The Pineapple Thief is a band I was kinda obsessed with back in early 2022, back before I listened to a lot more of this whole contemporary prog scene, aside from Steven Wilson and Porcupine Tree. To me, they were, and always will be, this enigmatic band that seemed to try something new each album, kinda like King Crimson or Motorpsycho. The difference between them and Pineapple Thief is that Pineapple Thief were less changing things on a dime, and instead were evolving, with each album practically being a completely different band, not in just members, but in attitude and general scope. Now, as I say this, everything has a starting point, and that starting point for The Pineapple Thief is their debut of Abducting The Unicorn, or what some may also call, Abducted At Birth, which is the title I will be using for this review.

At this stage in the group's career, practically it is just guitarist and lead singer Bruce Soord, though with Nick Lang and Mark Harris as backup for drums, keyboards, and bass. Bruce is the main guy though, with his acoustic (sometimes electronic) guitar, being the mainstay on most, if not all tracks. The album in its entirety also is less progressive rock in all facets, and more like a mixture of Radiohead levels of alt rock, meets with light prog twiddlings here and there. Heck, the album does get a bit more proggy near the end with the big 18 minute epic of Parted Forever, which is a really nice song.

The best thing I can say about this album is, of course, Bruce's guitar work. He is not like Robert Fripp or Steven Wilson levels of greatness, but I definitely think he delivers really well here. He has a knack for energy and tempo, and he checks all the boxes for a great guitarist, creating these moving, and very vibrant melodies that never get tiring to listen to, no matter when or how.

I also like Nick's drummings here, as they mix quite well with the more alt rock focused textures, and they complement Bruce's guitars extra well in my opinion. Really nice stuff.

Though, there really isn't much that makes me want to return to this album all that much, aside from the two big songs of Private Paradise and Parted Forever, both of which are fantastic, as I said before. It is mainly because I feel like the more shorter, alt rock focused tracks here do not quite play into their strengths all that much, and they kinda feel a little cookie cutter to me. There is definitely nothing wrong with them, but they kinda feel average, with no big changes to the formula of 90s alt rock that bands like Muse or Radiohead have already perfected, with the only exception being No One Leaves This Earth and Everyone Must Perish, which feel like stuff from completely different bands than what The Pineapple Thief dishes out.

I also am not a fan of Mark Harris' bass. It is very quiet, and I never really notice it, mostly due to how muted it is compared to the very high quality volume levels of the guitar and drums. He feels like a missed potential to me.

Overall, Abducted At Birth is a great, but slightly bare bones release. It has its weak spots, I give it that, but I think overall it is a serviceable experience for some nice contemporary progressive rock that is akin to Porcupine Tree and Gazpacho. Give it a looksee if you are interested in what early Pineapple Thief may have.

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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