Archive for December, 2011
UltimateGuitar.com recently interviewed Steven Wilson. Steven spoke about his latest studio album ‘Grace for Drowning’ and it’s subsequent tour, the Mikael Akerfeldt collaboration project ‘Storm Corrosion’ and the future of Porcupine Tree. When asked about the latter, Steven responded with this:
Any plans for a new Porcupine Tree album?
Actually not really—I’m havin’ too much fun with this. I’m out on the road with the Grace for Drowning band and I’m having so much fun and loving this. Obviously Porcupine Tree will get back together but I don’t know when. I think if we do a record together now we always try and raise the bar and sort of aim high and do something bigger and better than we’ve ever done before. So I couldn’t put a time scale on it. I don’t like working like, “Oh, we’ve got to have an album on the market by September.” I don’t like that kind of stuff so we’ll start making a record and eventually it will come out is all I can tell you – Steven Wilson
Steven was also asked about his opinions on the ‘cruel nature’ in the music business today. I personally found his answer to be rather excellent, so I’ve included it below:
You’ve been vocal in the past about the cruel nature of the music business. How do you feel about it here in 2011?
Creativity and ambition in music is no longer championed by the mainstream. Now there was only a very short window of time when it ever was and it’s kinda the time I’ve already referred to: the ’67 to ’77 period. There was a 10-year window there where creativity and ambition was actually something the mainstream embraced. It never happened before and it never happened since and I don’t think it will ever happen again. That’s unfortunate but in a way as a musician or an artist you just have to disconnect yourself from that and accept it and it’s difficult to do—I know it’s difficult to do that because it’s very easy to get bitter and twisted about it. With so much shit in the mainstream that seems to effortlessly sell gold and platinum and is on MTV and get on the radio. That’s a constant frustration for anyone that believes in what they do but you can let it eat you up and ruin your whole kind of career if you dwell on it too much – Steven Wilson
To read the full interview, head on over to UltimateGuitar.com here.
Insurgentes is the first solo album by Porcupine Tree’s lead singer/guitarist Steven Wilson, and it was released in 2008. The album is a collection of 10 tracks, many of which are a journey through various different styles of music. The record differs from the style of Wilsons’ main project, Porcupine Tree, in the fact that it isn’t a collection of songs, most tracks are experimental looks into different musical styles and ideas. However there are a few tracks on the album which are more song-like structured, most notably “Harmony Korine”, and “Insurgentes”.
The record starts in familiar territory for Porcupine Tree fans, with the ‘Fear of a Blank Planet’ esque “Harmony Korine”, but from there on in the record takes a route deeper into the real musical heart of Insurgentes. “Abandoner” and “Salvaging” show a step closer to the core of Insurgentes, dropping the song feel from “Harmony Korine”. Both tracks feel more organic in the way they develop, constantly making small changes to consistently engage the listener.
“Veneno Para Las Hadas”, or “Poison for the Fairies”, is one of the more elegant tracks on the album. It is slow moving, and displays Steven Wilsons skill at turning something simple into something beautiful, however it doesn’t feel similar to the more song based tracks on which Steven has shown this skill before, such as “Heart Attack in a Layby” from 2002′s “In Absentia”.
In direct contrast the next track is the 9 minute long “No Twilight Within the Courts of the Sun”, which experiments with different variations on the one riff. The next three tracks, “Significant Other”, “Only Child” and “Twilight Coda” continue in the Insurgentes style, developing only when needing to, and surprising the listener in many places.
The album concludes with two of the stronger tracks on the album. “Get All You Deserve” is a strong more song based track, which ends in a powerful crescendo of noise. The album ends on the beautiful choral like title track “Insurgentes” which feels similar to the sounds we’re used to, and it seems like the perfect fit after the album has taken us through the experimental music ideas which make the heart of Insurgentes.
Insurgentes is a strong album, which works best listened to as a whole, it may take a few listens to really “get in to” but those listens will be well worth it. The album showcases Steven’s talent as a musician, as well as songwriter. Insurgentes was the perfect starter for Steven’s solo project. It doesn’t sound so detached from more modern Porcupine Tree, in the fact it is, primarily a guitar lead album, however there are many experimental techniques, and a lot more orchestrations, which leave Wilson to explore many new paths in his solo career.
A great sign of things to come.
This article was written by Dan Hotten, StarsDie.com’s newest writer. This is the first in a new article feature series, called StarsDie.com Retrospective, which will inform you and tell you more about previous releases related to Porcupine Tree and Steven Wilson. I hope you enjoy reading his work! – Rob
Steven Wilson has yet again updated his Facebook page with some more info about what next year will offer us fans. In the update, he clarifies what he’s already alluded to previously, and confirms that a DVD/Blu-ray of the tour will be filmed and released in the back half of 2012. A live album comprised of material from the tour’s first leg will be released sometime early next year. He also mentioned that more information about Storm Corrosion will be coming soon. Most importantly however, he kindly thanked all of us fans for the support we’ve given him this year, and he mentioned specifically the Steven Wilson Street Team, who have done a phenomenal job for the community this year with their efforts to boost fans and awareness of Steven’s music and live dates. You can ‘like’ the Steven Wilson Street Team’s Facebook page here.
Seasons greetings to everyone. I wanted to take the opportunity to thank everyone for their support this year, most especially to the SW street team who worked so hard promoting the tour and made such a difference. I can’t remember ever having such a great reaction to an album, and the tour was also a fantastic experience with an incredible band. I’m working on some new music for the SW band to play and record in 2012, and we will be on tour again in April-May (during which we will film a Blu-ray / DVD for release later in the year), so I really hope to see many of your there. More news on Storm Corrosion and the live album from the SW tour coming soon. In the meantime have a happy new year! – Steven Wilson
Good news! Steven Wilson has updated his Facebook page with plans for an upcoming live album comprised of songs recorded over the first leg of his Grace for Drowning World Tour. The 70 minute live album CD will be available for mail order soon and available to buy at his upcoming shows across the USA and Europe as part of the second leg of the tour in April and May 2012.
I’ve included an extract from his Facebook update below:
There will be a limited edition 70 minute CD of highlights from my recent solo tour of Europe – again this will be available mail order and at shows only. More information soon, but in the meantime there are still some rough mixes of some of the performances on my Soundcloud page at http://soundcloud.com/
2012 is indeed shaping up to be a very exciting year for new releases. Stay tuned for more news!
Who else wants this to be the album cover?
We wish you a Merry Christmas from all of us here at StarsDie.com! Thanks to all for supporting us, we all really appreciate it. 2012 will bring enhanced features and content to StarsDie.com. News on the site will remain consistent and concise, and there will be accompanying reviews, interviews and video features for every major release next year (Storm Corrosion, Steven Wilson, Porcupine Tree…? etc). Launching soon is the StarsDie.com YouTube Channel, which will contain every original video produced so far, and will work as our main video hosting solution on the site. A lyrics database will also be added, and it will have a similar look and feel to the recently updated albums database.
We’ve got many more features and updates planned for the site, but we’ll announce those later on down the line. Also, here’s a photo of Rob with his Christmas presents – ‘The Sky Moves Sideways’ 2CD edition and ‘Coma Divine – Recorded Live in Rome’, which you can buy yourself from Burning Shed here.
Thanks again for all your support – StarsDie.com Admin Team