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Gleb Kolyadin: Gleb Kolyadin

Read "Gleb Kolyadin" reviewed by Geno Thackara

One sometimes doesn't know where to start in describing things under the progressive-rock umbrella, considering that the term comes with such a pile of baggage it's practically impossible to see around. The modern-day genre (to the extent that's even a recognizable thing) arguably has even more issues than the 1970s version: there are more bands out there than ever, more different styles and influences to combine or imitate, and more chances for players to simply fall back on a template ...

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Richard Barbieri: Planets + Persona

Read "Planets + Persona" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

Prominent British keyboardist Richard Barbieri (Porcupine Tree, Japan, David Torn) and an impressive support lineup give true meaning to the conventional ambient-electronic allusions of space exploration. But the keyboardist ups the ante by incorporating groove-based settings amid pristinely recorded textures, streaming layers and the use of acoustic instruments for augmentation and expansion-type initiatives. Here, every note resonates and provides x-amount of significance. Working with the world class prog rock band Porcupine Tree and numerous solo and side projects, ...

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Richard Barbieri: Planets + Persona

Read "Planets + Persona" reviewed by Geno Thackara

Keyboards often play a supporting part in many ensembles, but Richard Barbieri still takes the idea farther than most. His roles as band member (in art-pop outfit Japan and eclectic rock band Porcupine Tree) have always been marked by a distinct lack of spotlighting. He works with atmospheres more than notes, and riffs or heads are the exception more than the rule. This doesn't mean his solo excursions are simple unobtrusive ambience or abstract noise--rather, these are vividly immersive tapestries ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Steven Wilson: Hand. Cannot. Erase.

Read "Steven Wilson: Hand. Cannot. Erase." reviewed by John Kelman

Sometimes you never can tell. When British singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Steven Wilson released the old school progressive rock record The Raven That Refused to Sing (And Other Stories) (Kscope, 2013), who knew that it would not only turn out to be his best-selling album since walking away from Porcupine Tree to begin an increasingly successful solo career with Insurgentes (Kscope, 2009), but become the most successful album in his entire career? That progressive rock has been making a resurgence ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Steven Wilson: The Raven That Refused to Sing (And Other Stories) [Deluxe Edition]

Read "Steven Wilson: The Raven That Refused to Sing (And Other Stories) [Deluxe Edition]" reviewed by John Kelman

Even though Porcupine Tree began as a solo project for a young Steven Wilson in the late 1980s--and despite the British singer/guitarist/keyboardist remaining its primary composer through to The Incident (Kscope, 2009) and the recent live record from that tour, Octane Twisted (Kscope, 2012)--it's been some time since the group was truly representative of his aspirations, needs and desires. As he said in a 2012 All About Jazz interview: “When you have a group of musicians, you're inherently a democracy; ...

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Porcupine Tree: Octane Twisted

Read "Porcupine Tree: Octane Twisted" reviewed by John Kelman

Like it or not, the near-term future of British progressive/psychedelic rock Porcupine Tree is in a place of relative uncertainty. When group founder/singer/primary writer Steven Wilson was interviewed for All About Jazz in support of his the live solo set Get All You Deserve (Kscope, 2012), he revealed that 2013 will be focused largely on The Raven That Refused to Sing and Other Stories (Kscope, 2013)--the studio follow-up to his stellar sophomore studio date Grace for Drowning (Kscope, 2011)--and an ...

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Gavin Harrison & O5Ric: The Man Who Sold Himself

Read "The Man Who Sold Himself" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

Controversy usually sparks insightful arguments, and the third effort by this duo, including a DVD 5.1 surround sound mix, will assuredly summon disparate opinions. A largely experimental progressive rock endeavor, perennial poll-winning drummer Gavin Harrison (King Crimson, Porcupine Tree) and touch guitarist/vocalist O5Ric present a storybook-like presentation, abetted by existential lyricism and a throng of jarring themes. Harrison is true to form, these pieces primarily designed with complex rhythmic structures, blithe treatments, and 05Ric's rangy guitar implementations. However, ...

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Steven Wilson: Grace for Drowning

Read "Grace for Drowning" reviewed by John Kelman

Not that he wasn't already busy when, amidst being a driving force behind No-Man, Incredible Expanding Mindfuck and Porcupine Tree, singer/multi-instrumentalist Steven Wilson released his first proper solo recording, Insurgentes (Kscope, 2009), but the past two years have been even more hectic. His outstanding work bringing the King Crimson catalogue into the 21st century with revealing new Panegyric/DGM Live stereo and surround mixes of albums including 1971's Lizard and 1981's Discipline, has led to becoming the “go-to" mix/remix guy for ...

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Anekdoten: Chapters

Read "Chapters" reviewed by John Kelman

The influence of art rock bands like King Crimson continue to be felt into the new millennium, but when progressive rock began to make a comeback in the early 1990s--first in the underground, then in recent times to an even larger audience--albums that had been overlooked back in the day suddenly became hugely influential. Anekdoten began life as a Crimson tribute band, gradually introducing its own material into the mix and, ultimately, becoming an original band, taking the symphonic side ...

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Steven Wilson: Insurgentes

Read "Insurgentes" reviewed by John Kelman

As the primary force behind British rock group Porcupine Tree--in its earliest days, the only force, starting as a solo project in 1991 and becoming a true group in 1993 to record/support its early classic The Sky Moves Sideways (C&S, 1995)--it would be easy to question why multi-instrumentalist/writer/singer Steven Wilson has chosen to release an album under his own name. The stunningly broad-scoped yet undeniably focused Insurgentes is the answer. While fitting comfortably within Porcupine Tree's larger discography, its main ...

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The Pineapple Thief: Tightly Unwound

Read "Tightly Unwound" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

This four-piece unit sways along a thin line, where alternative rock attains a fruitful coexistence with more progressive musical elements. Founded by guitarist, keyboardist and vocalist Bruce Soord for his solo ventures, Pineapple Thief subsequently solidified its group-centric entity back in 2002. Fast-forwarding to this 2008 release, the musicians' methodology looms as a paradox of sorts. Think sophisticated pop, spiced with crunching alt-rock grooves and then toss in some strings and spacey overlays to complement Soord's endearing vocals. ...