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STEVEN WILSON

Crossover Prog • United Kingdom


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Steven Wilson biography
Steven John Wilson - Born 3 November 1967 in Kingston upon Thames, London, England

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 inspirat...
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To The BoneTo The Bone
Caroline International 2017
Audio CD$10.01
$9.90 (used)
Get All You DeserveGet All You Deserve
KSCOPE 2017
Audio CD$13.28
$32.90 (used)
To the Bone [Blu-ray]To the Bone [Blu-ray]
Widescreen
Caroline 2017
Blu-ray$14.08
$19.94 (used)
The Raven That Refused To SingThe Raven That Refused To Sing
KSCOPE 2017
Audio CD$7.90
$9.46 (used)
Hand.Cannot.EraseHand.Cannot.Erase
KSCOPE 2017
Audio CD$7.17
$7.16 (used)
InsurgentesInsurgentes
KSCOPE 2017
Audio CD$7.44
$9.50 (used)
4.54.5
KSCOPE 2017
Audio CD$9.02
$7.00 (used)
Hand. Cannot. Erase. (Blu-Ray + MP3/FLAC Download Codes)Hand. Cannot. Erase. (Blu-Ray + MP3/FLAC Download Codes)
Blu-ray
Kscope
Blu-ray$12.32
Grace For DrowningGrace For Drowning
KSCOPE 2017
Audio CD$9.08
$11.74 (used)
Cover VersionCover Version
KSCOPE 2017
Audio CD$10.86
$7.61 (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 | 957 ratings
Insurgentes
2008
4.21 | 1613 ratings
Grace For Drowning
2011
4.29 | 1822 ratings
The Raven That Refused To Sing (And Other Stories)
2013
4.28 | 1265 ratings
Hand. Cannot. Erase.
2015
3.57 | 384 ratings
4 ½
2016
3.65 | 271 ratings
To The Bone
2017

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

4.36 | 175 ratings
Catalogue/Preserve/Amass
2012

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

3.49 | 136 ratings
Insurgentes - The Movie
2010
4.60 | 289 ratings
Get All You Deserve
2012

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

2.82 | 107 ratings
Nsrgnts Rmxs
2009
3.15 | 107 ratings
Cover Version
2014
3.39 | 64 ratings
Transience
2015

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

3.68 | 40 ratings
Cover Version
2003
3.58 | 38 ratings
Cover Version II
2004
3.68 | 40 ratings
Cover Version III
2005
3.52 | 46 ratings
Unreleased Electronic Music
2005
3.82 | 36 ratings
Cover Version IV
2006
3.39 | 40 ratings
Cover Version V
2008
4.49 | 69 ratings
Harmony Korine
2009
3.62 | 52 ratings
Vapour Trail Lullaby
2010
3.57 | 45 ratings
Cover Version 6 plus full collection bundle
2010
3.38 | 8 ratings
Demos
2010
4.06 | 47 ratings
Postcard
2011
3.90 | 20 ratings
Cut Ribbon
2012
3.98 | 112 ratings
Drive Home
2013
4.36 | 11 ratings
Happiness III
2016

STEVEN WILSON Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 To The Bone by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.65 | 271 ratings

BUY
To The Bone
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
Special Collaborator Rock Progressivo Italiano Team

4 stars The last several years have seen British multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and producer extraordinaire Steven Wilson well and truly leave his Porcupine Tree past behind him and gradually hone a rewarding solo career that's been a mix of welcome experimentation and reliable expected moody alt-rock with lashings of both modern and retro-flavoured prog-rock. His last full studio album, 2015's `Hand. Cannot. Erase' delivered a mix of melodic tunes with experimental rock instrumentation that served as a good foot in the door for newcomers both young and older, so perhaps it was little surprise that Wilson might reign back his indulgences even that little bit more to capitalise on this fresh outside interest on a future recording. He's an artist that has managed to build great credibility and an elevated status but who can still fly under the radar just enough to allow himself to indulge in works like this, 2017's `To the Bone'.

Fuelled by THAT cover art, an early press release that proudly proclaimed the album as a pop work, a bouncy jangly pure-pop first single that had most of the prog-rock fans racing for the hills (and it's probably quite surprising that it wasn't a self-titled disc), `To The Bone' was instantly hit with the dreaded `sell out' tag and dismissed as career suicide. But careful and patient repeated listens reveal an album that has much merit, with plenty of the usual smart art-rock and blending of styles already associated with the artist...as well as some rather (slight!) disappointing surprises.

First issue to address: `To The Bone' is NOT a pop album, even if it has several more obviously poppy moments scattered throughout it. Nor is it so far removed from prog-rock as to be unrecognisable, and if anything many parts wouldn't have sounded out of place on mid-period `Stupid Dream/Lightbulb Sun'-era Porcupine Tree with their indie-rock crossover appeal. It's just that where his former bandmates (and even Wilson on his recent solo albums) would likely offering sublime instrumental passages, here Steven usually works in ambitious vocal arrangements of multi-part harmonies instead of show-boating soloing.

On to the disc - Steven and his frequent co-singer Ninet Tayeb open with the title track `To The Bone', a smouldering groover with plenty of ragged guitar soloing and a catchy lyrically defiant chorus, but for an album that many are ready to instantly dismiss as too straightforward or `pop', the piece also drifts into languid enveloping harmonies full of dreaminess in the climax that you sure wouldn't hear on the radio. `Nowhere Now' is just a great uptempo poppier tune that finds Steven in great spirits with a loved up and freed chorus. But the first `wow' moment of the disc has Steven teaming again with Ninet for `Pariah', a tender ballad that has already drawn comparisons to Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush's `Don't Give Up', and along with its weary yet supportive lyric, it also delivers a big bold emotionally charged finale that soars to the heavens with great poise and overall class.

The lyrically pessimistic `The Same Asylum As Before' is powered by punchy drumming and swampy grinding guitars burning around Steven's crooning falsetto, and there's a lovely laid-back interlude in the middle with lightly jazzy flavours to Steven's guitar bursts and some sparkling electric piano. Sure to be a favourite of many of his existing fans, `Refuge' is bookended with a low-key unhurried melancholic introspection and that sad beauty that Wilson has perfected to a fine art over the years, and some carefully executed dramatic lifts give the piece a weight and great tension. After wallowing in brooding contemplation, the `controversial' first single `Permanating' then proves a welcome respite, a buoyant and proudly peppy piano n' falsetto-powered pop burst that not only reveals Wilson's keen honing of strong melodic sensibilities, but is unashamedly comparable in parts to Electric Light Orchestra! Lighten up, people, and just enjoy a cool and (whisper it!) fun pop tune. `Blank Tapes' is then a fragile little ballad interlude of a pristine aching beauty and precious warmth.

Lyrically threatening and instrumentally brash (just listen to Steven's bouncing thick bass pounding away in parts, you'd swear it was Nick Beggs on this one - perhaps it was and there was a misprint in the CD booklet?!), `People Who Eat Darkness' is a relentlessly sleek indie-rocker that is bound to become a live favourite on the tour supporting this album. `Song Of I' is a darkly cool fusion of New Wave and eerie electronica that has Ninet and Steven swapping confessional lyrics over gloomy piano and maddening breathless orchestration.

The longest piece at just over nine minutes is `Detonation', and among its clipping electronic programming, delicate chiming guitars and Steven's purring words that are laced with spite and hostility, the instrumental second half slinks in and out of aggressive blasts, fiery near jazz-fusion-like runs and dreamy shimmering caresses - see, still much here for the snootiest of prog fans! Closer `Song Of Unborn' is a tender piano ballad with exquisite ethereal choir work that replaces gentle regret with reassuring optimism for its smart chorus, and it might not only be one of the most stirring finales to appear on a Wilson/Porcupine Tree disc, but one of his loveliest songs overall.

After all of that, there's little things that do let down `To the Bone' in a few surprising ways. While there's not a truly bad song to be found on the disc, much of what is included can perhaps be considered `reliable', with little that could be placed among Wilson's very best work, even if there's a few occasionally genuinely thrilling moments here and there. It's also a far cry from being the new direction or unexplored area of his sound that was hinted at in the press release, as it still sounds very much like a typical Wilson product, mood and lyrical theme wise. Honestly, the thought of Wilson writing a REAL pop album is more intriguing and daring than many parts of what was included here!

But `To the Bone' is still consistently enjoyable all the way through and can be especially appreciated as a less demanding background listen full of cool tunes and great playing that rarely gives in to instrumental self-indulgence. While it's not one of his best works, it achieves the enviable balance of being able to be enjoyed by existing fans of both his solo work and previous band, as well as being inviting to newcomers and non-prog rock fans (call them `muggles' if you like, prog snobs!), and it still showcases Wilson as an intelligent artist well deserving of his status in both the general music industry overall and as a modern progressive music icon of note.

Three and a half stars for just a great rock album.

 To The Bone by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.65 | 271 ratings

BUY
To The Bone
Steven Wilson Crossover Prog

Review by Biff Tannen

4 stars I get why this album isn't as rated as highly as Steven Wilson's other records. It's not as overly proggy, the arrangements are more simple, and the playing is more like Porcupine Tree in the later 90s (impressive as heck, but not jaw-dropping), And that is okay, because the songs are still there. Despite the insistence of some, this is not pop. I won't say this is one of my favorite SW records to date, but it would be a fairly accessible one for someone who has never heard him before, and for longtime fans like myself, it's another worthy addition to his stunning catalogue. 4 stars out of 5.
 To The Bone by WILSON, STEVEN album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.65 | 271 ratings

BUY
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
3.65 | 271 ratings

BUY
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
3.65 | 271 ratings

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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
3.65 | 271 ratings

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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
3.65 | 271 ratings

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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
3.65 | 271 ratings

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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
3.65 | 271 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
3.65 | 271 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.

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

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