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Porcupine Tree - Transmission IV CD (album) cover

TRANSMISSION IV

Porcupine Tree

 

Heavy Prog

4.08 | 96 ratings

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Luqueasaur
4 stars Porcupine Tree's Planet Caravan: 8.5/10

PORCUPINE TREE's metal phase shadows its earlier psychedelic phase, which, in my opinion, was much more accomplished (albeit heavily influenced by PINK FLOYD, or so they claim). Said epoch's magnum opus was THE SKY MOVE SIDEWAYS, which presented many solid and mature psychedelic tracks. One of them was a four-minutes version of Moonloop. Little did we all know of its true nature as a song as tenfold as big until PT decided to release, under scarce numbers, the entirety of the improvisation. Such releases are, by now, a rarity and roughly a collector's item, which makes its status as "essential" hard to agree with.

Moonloop is terrifically atmospheric. From the very beginning, the droney synthesizers coupled with Rick Edwards' eerie percussions (a psychedelic, less aggressive counterpart of LARKS) sets the mood of the track as an immersive track. The electronic and ambient moments are deeply vivid and build several environments, from the vast emptiness of space (when "astronaut voices" mutter random words) to still and murky jungles (thanks to the zoomorphic rattles that sounds like insects). There are some moments Moonloop border the realms of acid fusion, especially after the guitar solo, where the cosmic organs jam in a jazzier fashion; but after a while, the warmth eventually fades and the track return to its initial stance - of immense placidity. In others, Wilson's overly distorted guitar, similarly to David Gilmour's, strikes at full force. However, in no moment the band sounds like a PINK FLOYD copy (the styles are similar, but that's how far it goes). First, because melodic, long and distorted solos were not trademarked by that band - which so seems to be the excuse of many to dismiss PT as a PF wannabe; second, because PT creates a chill, almost entropic ambiance, whereas PINK FLOYD is intense, regardless whether they are playing serenely or agitatedly.

Superb songwriting, given the fact a 40-minutes-long jam never gets old even with its calmness. Really recommended for all space/psychedelic rock fans who like to trip on music (check this on YouTube if you can't afford to pay $200 on a limited edition LP); for those more mistrustful of ambient music, tread cautiously - unless you like PINK FLOYD (for some reason), in that case, you'll certainly dig this as well. For neither of those, take a shot. Submerge into PORCUPINE TREE's world and voyage through their surreal landscapes.

Luqueasaur | 4/5 |

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