Porcupine Tree - Stupid Dream

Year of Release: 1999
Label: KScope/Snapper
Catalog Number: SMACD813
Format: CD
Total Time: 59:58:00

Exactly one hour. That's how long it takes to go on a journey with Porcupine Tree on their latest studio offering. Whilst most critics loathe the approach of Steve Wilson and company, it's with the likes of Stupid Dream that the doors towards recognition get wide open. In full preparation for this disc, Steve had told me that the end result would be more guitar oriented, more American with dashes of Soundgarden and even the ambient period of Talk Talk.

I'm afraid that there are loads of fellow journalists out there that are on the constant lookout for the latest hype, regardless of the kind of music, as long as they can be the first to "discover" that particular artist. For a long time Porcupine Tree seemed to be exactly that "hype," heralded as the new Pink Floyd in lots of reviews. Now that the foursome Wilson/Maitland/Edwin/Barbieri are finally getting some recognition, after years and years of hard work, it looks as if a lot of these journalists are already on the lookout for something entirely different. The constant slagging off of new Porcupine Tree material has proved this. My dear colleagues, isn't it about time you give Stupid Dream another spin? Get the dirt out of your ears and, hey presto!, discover Radiohead and Beatles influences amongst the Pink Floyd elements. First everyone is moaning that "progressive rock" no longer is progressive, and once a real "progressive" artist stands up, the so called "experts" are waiting for The Sky Moves Sideways part two!

The combination of acoustic instruments and very loud rock music works very well during "This Is No Rehearsal," whilst in "Pure Narcotic" the final guitar sounds almost like genuine Steve Howe, whilst the singing is on the same wavelength as the better Supertramp repertoire. The well-known bombastic build up is once again apparent during "A Smart Kid" where the music comes out of your speakers almost like high and low tide. In "Don't Hate Me" the band knows how to integrate some superb saxophone playing in the same way the great Floyd used to do during their Dark Side Of The Moon period. Beware! I haven't spoken about plagiarism here because the original way of combining ambient soundscapes with straight rock is a "registered trademark" signed Wilson and company.

Maybe Porcupine Tree are not as hip as The Orb and have been pushed aside by the media in favour of Radiohead, but they are the true future of rock music and those of you who don't get yourself a copy of Stupid Dream are simply "damned stupid!"

Even Less (7:11) / Piano Lessions (4:21) / Stupid Dream (0:28) / Pure Narcotic (5:02) / Slave Called Shiver (4:41) / Don't Hate Me (8:30) / This Is No Rehearsal (3:27) / Baby Dream in Cellophane (3:15) / Stranger By The Minute (4:31) / A Smart Kid (5:22) / Tinto Brass (6:17) / Stop Swimming (6:53)

Richard Barbieri - synthesizers, Hammond organ, and mellotron
Colin Edwin - bass
Chris Maitland - drums and percussion
Steven Wilson - vocals, guitars, piano, and samples

On The Sunday Of Life... (1991)
Voyage 34 (1992)
Up The Downstair (1993)
Voyage 34: Remixes (1993)
Staircase Infinities (1994)
Moonloop E.P. (1994)
The Sky Moves Sideways (1995)
Signify (1996)
Coma Divine - Recorded Live In Rome (1997)
Stupid Dream (1999)
Voyage 34 - The Complete Trip (2000/2004/2005
'4 Chords That Made A Million' (2000)
Lightbulb Sun (2000/2008)
'Shesmovedon' (2000)
Lightbulb Sun - Special Edition (2001)
Recordings (2001)
Stars Die: The Delerium Years 1991 - 1997(2002/2005)
Metanoia (2002)
In Absentia (2002)
In Absentia (European version) (2003)
Warszawa (2005)
Deadwing (2005)
Porcupine Tree (2006)
Fear Of A Blank Planet (2007)
Nil Recurring (2008)
The Incident (2009)

Arriving Somewhere... (DVD) (2006)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin UK

Added: March 1st 2000
Reviewer: John "Bobo" Bollenberg

Artist website: www.porcupinetree.com
Hits: 1067
Language: english


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