Porcupine Tree (November 2007)

Date of Performance: October 18, 2007
Venue: The Egg, Albany, NY, US

Porcupine Tree came out like they had something to prove. It's been six years since I last saw Porcupine Tree live, at NEARfest 2001; much has changed, and for the better. The band flat out rocked, and had the audience in their spell right from the opening song "Fear Of A Blank Planet." The second song. "What Happens Now?", is from the band's recently released EP Nil Recurring, and although I was unfamiliar with this one, it still worked. The band concentrated on material from their three most recent albums In Absentia ("The Sound Of Muzak"), Deadwing ("Lazarus" & "Open Car"), and Fear Of A Blank Planet. They did dig into the catalogue to bring out "Dark Matter" from Signify, and an unreleased track titled "Drown With Me."

Drummer Gavin Harrison has truly done wonders for this band in the live setting. His superior drumming has propelled Porcupine Tree to new heights, making them tighter and more powerful. "Anesthetize" was one of the highlights, chugging through the brutal metal riffs, melodic chorus, and the atmospheric ending was mesmerizing. Second guitarist John Wesley shared guitar leads with Wilson, and his vocals add to a fuller band sound. Closing the show with the last two tracks from FOABP, "Way Out Of Here" and "Sleep Together" somehow brought these songs out and gave me more of an appreciation for them. Some may miss the spacier/atmospheric sound the band had, but keyboardist Richard Barbieri can still be found in plentiful amounts making sure they retain that element.

As incredible as the show was as a whole, the encores had the audience standing and head banging, and Steven Wilson made his thoughts known that he enjoys when the crowd is on its feet. "Blackest Eyes" kicked the crowd into high gear, followed by "Trains" and ending with "Halo." The crowd was a mix of young and old, and the 982 seats at the Egg were about full. I can't emphasize how powerful and tight the band is live, this is a show that should not be missed.

Added: November 1st 2007
Reviewer: Eric Porter
Artist website: porcupinetree.com
Hits: 1959
Language: english

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