Posts tagged the sky moves sideways
The full version of ‘Dislocated Day’ taken from Porcupine Tree’s recently released live album ‘Octane Twisted‘ has been uploaded to Kscope’s SoundCloud profile. ‘Dislocated Day’ (taken from PT’s The Sky Moves Sideways, first released in 1995) was recorded at the Royal Albert Hall in London on 14th October 2010.
Porcupine Tree’s first official live album ‘Coma Divine’ is now available to pre-order from Burning Shed in the form of a limited edition 3LP vinyl box set. The band’s full 80 minute performance containing material from On The Sunday of Life, Up The Downstair, The Sky Moves Sideways and Signify is spread across six sides of vinyl. Also included in the box is a twelve-page 12″ book containing artwork and photography. Pre-order now for 3rd September release date!
In every appearance except the compilation bearing its name, “Stars Die” has been conjoined with “Moonloop,” perhaps because the two were both born from the same 1994 studio jam session. Still, “Stars Die” was famously “not appearing on” The Sky Moves Sideways from its first appearance on the Moonloop EP, a decision SW later thought poor: even the US edition of the full album, released in 1995 on C&S Records, includes the track. I can hardly blame him, as this is a clear standout in the pantheon of PT ballads in my opinion; its subtle approach and thick atmosphere set it apart, the dreamy lyrics and intimate feel providing a full band counterpoint to the track that (seemingly always) follows.
Growing slowly out of the cadence of “Stars Die,” “Moonloop” is a study in band dynamic, its atmosphere staying the same throughout the improvisation with a bed made of a hovering sort of synthesizer pad. There are about three distinct sections inside the 40-minute jam released on Transmission IV, not counting the coda, driven by different basslines. The various edits of the track featured on the original TSMS albums (UK and US), its expanded remaster, and the Moonloop EP all focus on the first section, its smooth bassline sliding around the added percussion (played by Rick Edwards, who joined them for the original jam) and Maitland’s steady cymbal counting. The only major difference between each of the “Moonloop” improvisation edits is when this jam section ends and the coda begins: on the Moonloop EP and UK TSMS, the improv ends at about 12 minutes in, when Edwin’s bassline repeats a variance of the original and ends up at the tonic again. The US TSMS edition fades out the band long before, after about 4 minutes, and the expanded remaster includes the entirety of this jam section plus more atmospheric improvisation afterward, which then bridges into the coda (accounting for the extra 4 minutes). I must say I prefer the original edit of the track, as I end up feeling like the 16-minute edit includes a bit too long a bridge to the coda; I think the entirety of the piece works better when that transition is more succinct. “Moonloop” (Coda) was structured in overdubbing afterward, as the Transmission IV recording establishes, and quite well. Its melodic structure carried by the keyboards returns to the “Dislocated Day” Eastern-esque scales, another aspect giving the album overall a very different melodic feel than the rest of the PT catalogue — and its intensity is clearly differentiated from much of the material on OTSOL and UTD.
The Sky Moves Sideways is a truly progressive beast, taking equal cues from SW’s “Radioactive Toy” approach and the full band’s collective improvisation and songwriting, a marriage that would come to full fruition in 1996 on Signify. In some ways, the two albums are sister releases, both approaching the majestic-songwriting-vs.-space-jamming sonic dichotomy with the same interest and meticulousness. Sadly (in my opinion!), the release of Coma Divine in 1997 and Metanoia in 1998 essentially ended the ‘jammier’ version of Porcupine Tree, a side I still miss in the continued excellence the band has offered since.
The Sky Moves Sideways has proved to remain a divisive release in the Porcupine Tree catalogue since its release in February 1995. For the first time, the band name had begun to take shape as an entity beyond the sole whim of Steven Wilson and his fabricated ‘group history’ mythology created through three cassette releases in the late 1980s; just 14 months prior, they had performed live for the first time, Wilson joined by a hodgepodge handful of previous No-Man collaborators and associates (with part of the performance collected in 1993 on the limited release Spiral Circus). However, Wilson had already begun demoing material in his usual methods at No Man’s Land, proving The Sky Moves Sideways to be a transitional record.
It may be this reason that informs such division in fanbase and critical reaction: clearly, Wilson’s own interests were waning from the psychedelia of …On the Sunday of Life and avant garde electronic dance-rock of Voyage 34 and Up the Downstair, instead leaning toward the progressive influences of Pink Floyd and krautrock. Yet the powerful live formation and musical chemistry with Richard Barbieri, Colin Edwin, and Chris Maitland proved fruitful in this direction as well, the Moonloop EP release in 1994 confirming their collective improvisation and songwriting would also propel forward the expansion into the new territory.
Let’s take a walk through the tracks, following the tracklist of the 2003 remaster (save the alternate version of the title track, which will be sprinkled where appropriate).
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