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STEVEN WILSON

Crossover Prog • United Kingdom


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Steven Wilson biography
STEVEN WILSON, perhaps most widely known for his role as the frontman for the popular act Porcupine Tree, is an artist from the UK who, through his various side projects, has spanned a vast number of musical ideas and concepts. Some of the styles he has been known to utilize are heavy prog, psychedelic, electronica, post-rock, ambient music, drone, metal, and art rock. Furthermore, WILSON is intensely focused on production values, dynamic mixing and mastering, and all other sorts of building albums that sound best in high-quality systems. In short, WILSON has always been an artist that appeals to audiophiles and fans of meticulously produced music. This shows up strongly in each of his bands and projects, but it plays even more of a role in his solo efforts.

Though some of his earliest musical recordings were demos that predated even Porcupine Tree, his solo releases did not truly start appearing until his "Cover Version" singles began in 2003. Essentially releasing one a year, each "Cover Version" contained a particularly unconventional song that WILSON chose to reproduce and one original song by WILSON. Also, in 2004, WILSON put out his experimental electronic album "Unreleased Electronic Music Vol. 1." Neither the "Cover Version" singles nor "Unreleased Electronic Music" feature any other performers, aside from some input from THEO TRAVIS on the latter.

That trend changed at the end of 2008, however, when WILSON released his first full-length, proper solo album, "Insurgentes." Featuring, among others, PORCUPINE TREE drummer Gavin Harrison, Prog bass legend TONY LEVIN, current DREAM THEATER keyboardist JORDAN RUDESS, and saxophonist/flautist THEO TRAVIS, "Insurgentes" proves rather quickly that it is not simply another ambient or electronic release. Toying with many of the styles that can be seen in PORCUPINE TREE, "Insurgentes" is a mature, laid-back album marked by less metal and more noise than PT's later albums. WILSON has stated that the album draws a lot of influence from shoe gazer, post-punk, and drone music.

Essentially, before "Insurgentes," WILSON used his solo moniker for a final catch-all for some of his music, making it difficult to draw comparisons to other bands. Nevertheless, "Insurgentes" makes it possible to site some bands with similar sound. Of notable similarity or inspiration are RADIOHEAD, JOY DIVISION, GODSPEED YOU! BLACK EMPEROR, THE MARS VOLTA, and other WILSON projects such as BASS COMMUNION and PORCUPIN...
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To The BoneTo The Bone
Caroline International 2017
Audio CD$10.18
$7.90 (used)
To the Bone [Blu-ray]To the Bone [Blu-ray]
Widescreen
Caroline 2017
Blu-ray$14.99
$20.82 (used)
Hand.Cannot.EraseHand.Cannot.Erase
KSCOPE 2017
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The Raven That Refused To SingThe Raven That Refused To Sing
KSCOPE 2017
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4.54.5
KSCOPE 2017
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Transience ( Cd )Transience ( Cd )
KSCOPE 2017
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Hand. Cannot. Erase. (Blu-Ray + MP3/FLAC Download Codes)Hand. Cannot. Erase. (Blu-Ray + MP3/FLAC Download Codes)
Blu-ray
Kscope
Blu-ray$14.50
InsurgentesInsurgentes
KSCOPE 2017
Audio CD$9.30
$9.54 (used)
Grace For DrowningGrace For Drowning
KSCOPE 2017
Audio CD$11.99
The Raven That Refused To SingThe Raven That Refused To Sing
Import
KSCOPE 2017
Vinyl$28.38
$22.99 (used)
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STEVEN WILSON discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

STEVEN WILSON top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.83 | 945 ratings
Insurgentes
2008
4.21 | 1600 ratings
Grace For Drowning
2011
4.30 | 1798 ratings
The Raven That Refused To Sing (And Other Stories)
2013
4.28 | 1246 ratings
Hand. Cannot. Erase.
2015
3.57 | 368 ratings
4 ½
2016
3.60 | 216 ratings
To The Bone
2017

STEVEN WILSON Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.36 | 174 ratings
Catalogue/Preserve/Amass
2012

STEVEN WILSON Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

3.48 | 135 ratings
Insurgentes - The Movie
2010
4.61 | 285 ratings
Get All You Deserve
2012

STEVEN WILSON Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.82 | 106 ratings
Nsrgnts Rmxs
2009
3.14 | 105 ratings
Cover Version
2014
3.37 | 60 ratings
Transience
2015

STEVEN WILSON Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.72 | 39 ratings
Cover Version
2003
3.59 | 37 ratings
Cover Version II
2004
3.69 | 39 ratings
Cover Version III
2005
3.55 | 45 ratings
Unreleased Electronic Music
2005
3.86 | 35 ratings
Cover Version IV
2006
3.40 | 39 ratings
Cover Version V
2008
4.50 | 68 ratings
Harmony Korine
2009
3.64 | 51 ratings
Vapour Trail Lullaby
2010
3.57 | 44 ratings
Cover Version 6 plus full collection bundle
2010
3.43 | 7 ratings
Demos
2010
4.11 | 46 ratings
Postcard
2011
3.95 | 19 ratings
Cut Ribbon
2012
3.97 | 107 ratings
Drive Home
2013
4.44 | 9 ratings
Happiness III
2016

STEVEN WILSON Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 To The Bone by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.60 | 216 ratings

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To The Bone
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Nothing like a little controversy to draw some attention to yourself. Steven announces his new album and how it's in the poppier mode and well let the discussions begin, as they have. The album cover is so immature and I'm not sure of the reason for that other than it's more controversy. Lots to like though over the one hour of music here, and much of it sounds familiar reminding me of PORCUPINE TREE and past Wilson solo albums. It does feel like a re-hash of sorts but there's some new ideas here as well but unfortunately they don't save this album for me.

"To The Bone" opens with spoken female words giving us Steven's kool-aid. It suddenly turns powerful with plenty of atmosphere and harmonica too. It becomes more open sounding when the vocals arrive a minute in. It picks up as the vocals continue. Lots of beats in this one and an extended guitar solo during the instrumental section. It's okay. "Nowhere Now" has reserved vocals and piano before it turns powerful a minute in, then it picks up with vocals. Catchy stuff.

"Pariah" is easily my favourite thanks to Ninet Hayeb's gorgeous and moving vocals. And that's the thing with this song it really moves me. "The Same Asylum As Before" has these expressive guitar melodies and a beat as these really high pitched vocals from Steven arrive(haha). When he sings normally this song turns into something that's really good. Like something off of "Stupid Dream" or "Lightbulb Sun". I like when it turns powerful before 2 1/2 minutes. Back to the chorus 4 minutes in before kicking back hard late.

"Refuge" opens with piano and fragile vocals. There's those high pitched vocals Steven seems intent on doing on this album. Yikes! I like when it kicks into gear following this and check out the harmonica too. followed by a guitar solo. Reserved vocals and piano end it. "Permanating" is my least favourite song by far. A catchy beat with drums, piano and mono-toned vocals. When it kicks in Steven uses his newly found high voice. And this does not work here at all.

"Blank Tapes" is a short laid back piece that's pretty good. "People Who Eat Darkness" reminds me too much of "Arriving Somewhere But Not Here" once it kicks in after the "F" bomb in the intro. Yes this sounds amazing but it's too familiar. "Song Of I" has percussion and a dark mood as reserved vocals join in. An electronic vibe to this one, lots of atmosphere halfway through. Some ethreal female vocal melodies later.

"Detonation" is the longest track at almost 9 1/2 minutes but it's far from the best track. Electronics as relaxed vocals join in with plenty of atmosphere. It kicks in surprisingly hard before 2 1/2 minutes. The vocals return as it stays uptempo. Some nice guitar after 7 1/2 minutes during the catchy instrumental section. "Song Of Unborn" is the mellow closer in the Steven Wilson tradition and it's one of my favourites from the album. The chorus is beautiful with vocals, piano, a beat and atmosphere. It does turn more powerful which I really enjoy.

A good album but there's too many things that I don't enjoy to offer up that fourth star.

 To The Bone by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.60 | 216 ratings

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To The Bone
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by The Jester

3 stars Before anything else, I think I should write that I consider myself as a 'fan' of Porcupine Tree, but not Steven Wilson as a solo artist. I have all the albums he released either with Porcupine Tree or Blackfield and his solo releases as well. When I heard the first rumours about his new album To the Bone, I must say that I was surprised. Steven Wilson will be releasing a Pop album? How is that even possible? Well, everything is possible you know, especially when some gifted and talented musician is fed up, and wants to try something different. That's not bad in my opinion, especially since he keeps his usual high quality standards intact. Many people rushed to 'bury' him, but I don't understand why. David Bowie for example, was praised by doing the same thing. He never stood still, and for that reason he was called the 'chameleon' of Rock music. He played many different styles, he changed his image I don't know how many times, and he was worshiped for that. So, why are you accusing Steve Wilson for trying to do something like that? (I am not trying to compare these two musicians, I am trying to set an example). So, To the Bone is it really a Pop album? The answer is no! Is it a Prog album? Again, no! This time Steven Wilson tried to combine many different music styles, including Pop, Rock, Prog, etc. And the result is this really enjoyable album, easy to listen to, which includes some really fine moments. There are songs here, that will remind you his days with Porcupine Tree, some others that sound like Blackfield, and some others that doesn't sound like anything Steven Wilson did before. But they do sound like Peter Gabriel of the 80's for example, or even Abba! As you can probably understand, To the Bone is a music 'salad' which is including some fine ingredients in it. A very enjoyable album in my opinion, but not recommended to the 'devoted' Progressive Rock fans. All the others will definitely find something(s) that they will like in it. Favourite songs: To the Bone, Pariah, Blank Tapes, and Song of Unborn. My rating 3.5 stars (but I will rate it with 3.0, since I can't rate it with 3.5)

 To The Bone by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.60 | 216 ratings

BUY
To The Bone
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by muggle68

4 stars Selected thoughts about selected songs

To the Bone: Interesting sounds sometimes, engaging enough and well-produced, has its moments but a bit repetitive; microcosm of this album in some ways.

Permanating: fun to listen to and surprisingly hasn't gotten old yet. Hope though this is a one-off experiment with a new sound and not a first ode to commercialism and mass appeal a la Asia and Genesis at their worst.

Detonation: and the progarchives community sighs a collective sigh of relief; ah yes there is one truly hard-hitting and progressive song on this sometimes hard-to-categorize album. Hard to describe the moment of surprise and release when the prog-metal-esque riff takes off like a starter's pistol has been fired, letting up for only a few brief respites for the rest of the runtime. Plays out as a series of engaging variations and undulations on that one core riff for an overall effect that, although lighter and less daring than Ancestral and similar unforgettable career peaks, still resolves into a unique jazzy smoothness this track can call all its own.

Song of Unborn: had to listen to this one a few times but it really grew on me and now hits me hard every time I listen to it. Unquestionably the most beautiful song on this album, capping everything off finally with an incredibly hopeful and moving sound and message, building and building in a series of choruses that become more ornate and more heartfelt as the song goes on, and as you listen to it again and again.

 To The Bone by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.60 | 216 ratings

BUY
To The Bone
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by proghaven

1 stars ...and here's the next stage of personal evolution of Steven Wilson as a solo artist. From a boldly experimenting musician of widest creative range and full creative freedom - to a prudent, almost pre-programmed artist who knows very well what his audience expects from him, and does nothing but what's expected. Stage one, 2008: Insurgentes. Sounds somewhat bashful, as if the musician hadn't yet used to consider himself a solo artist and was constantly glancing behind his practice in Porcupine Tree. Stage two, 2011: Grace For Drowning. A masterpiece for all times, a true chef d'oeuvre, really an encyclopedic concept album of highest level and amazing diversity, maybe better than any Porcupine Tree release. Stage three, 2013: The Raven... is just an excellent album, not as profound and thrilling as Grace For Drowning, but an unquestionable achievement. Stage four, 2015: Hand. Cannot. Erase seems to be mostly pre-composed by Wilson's fans though has a few interesting and 'risky' moments (Perfect Life for example). Stage four-and-a-half, 2016: nice, nice, very nice. And nothing essential, nothing deserving a discussion. And finally, 2017: since To The Bone, no more risk that some day the artist will deceive his audience's expectations. Nothing is new, nothing is surprising, nothing is experimental and/or explorative, everything is self- repetitive and approbated in the previous releases (despite all attractive phrases about 'fusing futurist rock' and 'gloriously dynamic Modernist Pop' in the distributor's advert). Well, in brief - there's no genuine Steven Wilson in Steven Wilson's new work. Is the album To The Bone good? Yes it is. It's flawless. It's perfectly composed, built, arranged, performed, produced, engineered and recorded. Is the album bad? Yes it is! It's musically empty. It's withering. The only spring of fresh water in this harmonious desert is Permanating, not due to its musical merits but just because late 1970s disco tunes are not typical for Wilson. All the rest is... no, not silence of course, but if the current tendency in Wilson's career will continue, perhaps silence would be better.
 To The Bone by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.60 | 216 ratings

BUY
To The Bone
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by rdtprog
Special Collaborator Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

4 stars When we heard that Steven was making a Pop album, people were skeptical. Did he sell his soul to the devil? How can this artist that has a reputation to make some "serious Prog Music" can go in that direction? And then when we listen to the album we realized that he was probably already making music that contains some Pop in it, his Blackfield project is another example. What makes Steven Wilson a great composer is his talent to absorb all his past influences to create his own music. So, this album is not that different than it's previous solo album, sure it's less jazzy, experimental and metal, except for the longest track "Detonation" who has all the Wilson trademark."Pariah" is this gorgeous ballad brighten up by the voice of Ninet Hayeb and ending in an intense post-rock atmosphere. In the "Same Asylum Ase Before", he can go to a catchy chorus to a short Porcupine Tree heavy part.In the song"Refuge" the melody is developed slowly before the drums that remind me Manu Katché starts to bring the pace up to let the guitars and the harmonica take the lead in some intense playing. "Permanating" is the real Pop song of the album, enjoyable and placed carefully in the middle of the album to change the mood. "People who eat Darkness" could have been a Porcupine Tree song. "Song of I" show his influence for Kate Busch and Peter Gabriel but with some ambient soundscape, and with a little bit of middle-eastern music at the end. So, this is not a radical change in the solo career of Steven Wilson. I did find the similarity in his songwriting style with all his projects, and no he has not sold his soul to the devil, he is still the half-god half human we all know.
 To The Bone by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.60 | 216 ratings

BUY
To The Bone
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by CeeJayGee

4 stars Much to my surprise, Steven Wilson pre-released five of the eleven songs from his latest album To The Bone. This appears to have been part of the marketing campaign which seeks to maximise discussion and exposure prior to release. Personally I am not convinced that this has been effective but time will tell.

Sadly there are no songs of the scale and calibre of Luminol or Ancestral from the last two releases and the longest track is just over nine minutes. Unlike the last two albums, this is not a concept album. Wilson describes the album as "progressive pop", something he has never attempted before as he tries to emulate the albums he loved from the 80s which include Peter Gabriel's So and Kate Bush's Hounds Of Love amongst others.

Like other songwriters this year, Wilson has chosen to comment on topical issues such as post truth. However the messages don't come over as strongly as they do on the IT, Roger Waters or The Tangent releases this year.

The album opens with the title track To The Bone. This is a pacey, toe-tapping rocker which is further brightened by an excellent harmonica solo.

Nowhere Now is more melancholic with a minimalistic intro that builds in tempo.

The third track Pariah was an early pre-release. The song is a duet with Ninet Tayeb who sang so wonderfully on HCE. I enjoyed Pariah when I first heard it and I am growing to love it the more I listen to it. It is a beautiful ballad that grows into a wall of sound in its final quarter.

The fourth track, The Same Asylum As Before, was another pre-release and is another rocker with a catchy tune. Wilson initially sings falsetto but then returns to his normal range.

The fifth track, Refuge, was also pre-released and returns to a melancholic theme with an atmospheric introduction that picks up tempo as the drumming develops and intensity builds to a wall of sound like Pariah but returns to a more ambient sound at the close. This track is the highlight of the album. Beautifully crafted.

Permanating is the sixth track and was also pre-released. Wilson describes the song as "what ABBA and the Electric Light Orchestra would sound like if produced by Daft Punk". This is certainly the most up-tempo of all the tracks and is considerably more excitable than say Meantime was when released by Porcupine Tree. Meantime was quite a surprise at the time and this one really did surprise me. Of the pre-releases, I disliked this one the most but now that I hear it on the album I am tolerating it but it will probably be the first to be deleted from the album playlist.

Blank Tapes also features Ninet Tayeb but the song appears less well suited to her vocal range. This is the shortest track on the album at just over two minutes. This is quite a restrained melancholic song but the melody does not stand out for me.

People Who Eat Darkness is another rocker but, as a song, doesn't do a lot for me.

Song Of I was the fifth pre-release from the album. The song uses some interesting pauses to good effect and develops an almost cinematic sound mid-way through.

Detonation is the tenth and longest track at just over nine minutes. This is one of the few tracks where the theme is developed in a way that allows for solos.

The final track is Song Of Unborn which is a more typical Wilson ballad and again uses pauses to interesting effect. A beautiful melody is further enhanced by a choir arrangement in the middle part.

I am one of Steven Wilson's most devoted fans and I admire him for what he is trying to do in progressing his music. Personally I don't feel that he has come anywhere close to the brilliance of Peter Gabriel's So but this is an interesting album with many good songs and I believe is worthy of a four star rating.

 To The Bone by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.60 | 216 ratings

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To The Bone
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by MaxnEmmy

4 stars Less can be more when given the right frame of mind. Popular melodies are not to be given disrespect, and simple phrases are sometimes the longest lasting mind catching linear feelings. This is Steven latest attempt to be commercial and he has gained a larger following based on his innovated approach to the rock genre. No one has the ability to make a sad song like this man, and infuse his thoughts and emotion in such a way as to leave a lasting impression on the listener. Don't you worry, don't worry about a thing. Nothing really ends. I would give this record 4.5 stars because it attains what it sets out to do.
 To The Bone by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.60 | 216 ratings

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To The Bone
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by LakesideRitchie

5 stars Wilson has done it again. And the album is just what he said it would be: a celebration of the great art pop albums of the eighties and nineties. Let's do a song by song analysis.

- To the Bone - It starts off with a female voice, American accent, about the fact that everybody has his or her own perception of Truth. Trump would approve of this song! Lyrics for the entire song are courtesy of the great Andy Partridge of XTC-fame. After this introduction a guitar strum kicks in that "echoes" Pink Floyd (pun intended) and then Steven's clear voice comes in. A wonderful start of of the album which makes you crave for more. The lyric "Rain down on me" preludes on the forthcoming Refuge. Or does it hark back to Radiohead's Paranoid Android? You never now.

- Nowhere Now - The first "poppy" song of the album. Still proggy enough for me. Would have fitted perfectly on the Porcupine Tree albums Lightbulb Sun or Stupid Dream.

- Pariah - The song where Ninet Tayeb lends her voice to a song that ends in a marvelous hair raising crescendo. And in the end these chilling words sung by Steven: "Don't you worry, don't worry about a thing, 'cause nothing really dies, nothing really ends." Steven's first nod to Peter "So" Gabriel (Don't Give Up featuring Kate Bush, anyone?): a man and women duet about a society outcast.

- The Same Asylum as Before - Another PT era song, this time more in the vein of let's say Deadwing.

- Refuge - The opening sounds make you instantly think Peter Gabriel is going to shout out "Red Rain coming down" any moment now, but Steven keeps us in suspense. It is not until 2:39 that SW really bursts into full Peter Gabriel mode. And although he is not singing PG's words, the lyrics carry more or less the same message. Finding a shelter from modern day disturbances. The song is supposed to deal with refugees, but my interpretation dares to be deviant. Kind of blend between Red Rain and Gabriel's San Jacinto (esp. the chord structure).

- Permanating - The ABBA/ELO/Beatles song. Upbeat and uplifting. A well crafted popsong, but, with the SW touch which makes this a standout song after all.

- Blank Tapes - Early Genesis mellotron and guitar open this lovely quiet song about a love that's lost. Somehow reminds me of the Robert Fripp song Mary on his 1979 Exposure album.

- People Who Eat Darkness - The third PT song on the album. I would say Fear of a Blank Planet era. Another sonic treat. Fabulous U2-like guitar solo!

- Song of I - Sophie Hunger lends her voice to this one. Not the gritty quality of Ninet Tayeb's voice, but much clearer. Perfect fit for this song. Second hint at Peter Gabriel/Kate Bush with the lyric "Give it up" as opposed to "Don't give up"?

- Detonation - SW starts off in Radiohead mode. From 1:19 to 1:30 the reference to Thom Yorke is more than obvious. But it's not like a rip off of any kind. SW has this special way of borrowing from other musicians without becoming cheesy or a complete clone. Influences from King Crimson have always been blatant in Wilson's work, but in this track he seems to have amalgamated Radiohead, King Crimson, his own Porcupine Tree and a whiff of Tears for Fears. By far the "proggiest" track of the album with an epic length of 9:20.

- Song of Unborn - The album's closer sounds like It would have fitted perfectly on Wilson's Hand.Cannot.Erase album. A lovely finale to a contemporary progpop album. An instant classic if you ask me.

The "dirty" harmonica in several of the songs adds a bluesy touch that gives these songs this extra uhmpf. And in places it reminds you of Supertramp, which was supposedly the idea.

I'm probably biased, but it seems I am just unable to dislike anything Steven Wilson keeps churning out. I've known his musical output since 2005, watched him three times live and God knows what this man will be releasing in the future. There's just no end to his genius and inventiveness. He keeps baffling me with his ideas. Takes a new turn with every album and never fails to astonish me.

As I already pointed out, Steven's musical influences are very clear from beginning to end, but in his hands it never gets a total rip-off. He managed to turn this album into the new "OK Computer", twenty years after the release of that seminal Radiohead album.

Well done Steven! Keep it up.

 Insurgentes by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2008
3.83 | 945 ratings

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Insurgentes
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by The Crow
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Before the breaking-up/hiatus of Porcupine Tree, Steven Wilson released his first album under his own name giving us an enjoyable but not really memorable experience.

Wilson managed to reunite a bunch of great musicians to help him recording this album. The legendary Tony Levin on bass, the habitual Theo Travis, the gifted Porcupine Tree's drummer Gavin Harrison, Dream Theater's Jordan Rudess... Impressive, just like the great sound of the album achieved by Steve Wilson himself.

But the problem is that despite the undeniable quality of the album and production, the music does not reaches the great level what Porcupine Tree was achieving at this moment. After things like Deadwing and Fear of A Blank Planet, Insurgentes just can't compete. But let's talk about the songs!

Harmony Korine must be a Porcupine Tree leftover because it has the band's trademark, despite being a little too repetitive. A good song anyway. But Abandoner is some kind of downfall... An electronic base, a good work of Theo Travis, but nothing more. Just dull and not surprising at all.

Salvaging is darker and ominuos, and also better. The second half of the song is psychedelic and ambiental, till the drums appear again to end the song properly. Veneno para las Hadas is another ambiental tune, with good melodies but utterly intrascendent. But No twilight between the courts of the Sun is another highlight. Long, dense, great drums and maybe another Porcupine Tree's leftover.

Significant Other brings excellent vocal melodies and another wall of sound towards the end of the song. Only child is my personal favourite here with its strong bass line. Unfortunately Twilight Coda is another pointless song, just a transition to Get All you deserve, a very melancholic song with a strong No-Man feeling wich also gains intesity towards the end. I think Wilson uses this formula too much in this album... A song that starts in a mellow and interesant way wich gains in decibels in the last minutes. A lot of songs have this structure on this album and the result is a bit foreseeable in my opinion.

Insurgentes closes this album beautifully, in a very intime way.

Conclusion: Insurgentes has its flaws. In my opinion too many to consider it an essential addition to any prog collection. But the followers of Steve Wilson will surely be very pleased with an album that collect a lof of ideas and direction that this great musician had till the publication of this album 2008.

It lacks a clearer direction, proggression in its songs and a bit of hook, but Insurgentes it's nevertheless a good album.

Best Tracks: Harmony Korine, Salvaging, No Twilight Between the Courts of the Sun, Only Child, Insurgentes.

My rating: ***

 Catalogue/Preserve/Amass by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Live, 2012
4.36 | 174 ratings

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Catalogue/Preserve/Amass
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

5 stars I'm surprised there's no written reviews for this one yet. The music here is taken from the European tour for the "Grace For Drowning" tour, in particular this was recorded in October of 2011. I saw this same tour but in Toronto at The Opera House. When I went to that show I went with my daughter who is a huge fan and her husband who is a big Country music fan. He's a good sport though and I heard him saying "My God!" a few times while watching Marco Minneman and I have to say that his performance on the kit was the best I've seen live and I hate to say that being a big Neil Peart fan but man Marco blew me away. The whole show was incredible though and to get a taste of that again with this album has been very meaningful to me.

My two favourite Steven wilson albums are the first two which is what is represented here. There are two songs from "Insurgents" and the rest from "Grace For Drowning". Oh and just to emphasize how much I love these two albums I gave "Insurgents" album of the year in 2008 and "Grace For Drowning" was my album of the year for 2011. The album's title "Catalogue/Preserve/Amass" is taken from the chorus for the song "Index".

"No Twilight Within The Courts Of The Sun" has a sinister vibe early on with the bass and drums as the electric piano joins in. Some nice guitar expressions follow then flute. It kicks in hard at 5 1/2 minutes. So good! A calm with vocals follows then it kicks back in but with vocals this time. Incredible! Love the mellotron section that follows along with the piano.

"Index" is that creepy song about the collector. Fairly relaxed overall but check out the brief power before 2 minutes. "Deform To Form A Star" is one of my favourite Wilson songs of all time. Just a gorgeous track, especially the chorus with the mellotron and soaring vocals. This one got stuck in my head at work this past week many times.

"Sectarian" opens with drums and some cool guitar expressions before the heaviness arrives. Check out the sax and mellotron after 2 minutes. A change around 4 minutes with electric piano, drums and bass leading the way, oh and check out the mellotron as well. Back to the heaviness after 6 minutes. "No Part Of Me" opens with drums, keys and atmosphere as almost spoken vocals join in before 2 minutes. Nice bass before 3 1/2 minutes then it kicks in heavily with riffs. "Veneno Para Las Hadas" is slow moving with plenty of atmosphere as laid back vocals join in. Flute 3 minutes in as the vocals step aside until after 4 minutes when they return. This one is laid back and melancholic.

"Raider II" ends it and as Steven says while introducing it, it is the centre-piece of the new album. He goes on to say that it's long(25 minutes) and complicated so silence please. Ominous is the word to start but man I like when it kicks into gear with mellotron before 3 minutes. Vocals join in and they do get passionate. I like the flute playing over the heaviness. A calm follows that I really like then we pretty much get Prog-Metal after 8 minutes. A sax solo before 10 minutes as it settles back. The heaviness returns 11 1/2 minutes in before another atmospheric calm a minute later. More flute then vocals. It's building 17 1/2 minutes in as the vocals step aside. Some crazy sax expressions after 19 minutes then a big finish except it's not over despite the roar from the audience 21 minutes in thinking it is. It ends in an ominous manner just like it began.

Great sound quality, great track list and an amazing performance by all involved makes this a 5 star album and one of my favourite live albums period.

Thanks to Dean for the artist addition. and to NotAProghead for the last updates

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