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Wilson, Steven: Insurgentes

Steven Wilson, the mastermind behind Porcupine Tree, Blackfield, No-Man, and Bass Communion, unleashes his first official 'solo' album, titled Insurgentes. In many ways, this is a return to his roots, to the more experimental early days of PT on releases such as The Sky Moves Sideways and Signify. Save for the opening blast of "Harmony Korine", a delicious hard rocker that could have easily come off of Deadwing, In Absentia, or Lightbulb Sun, much of Insurgentes roams more proggy, psychedlic, and ambient waters, which will thrill lovers of the most recent PT outing, Fear of a Blank Planet.

With a guest list that includes PT drummer Gavin Harrison, Theo Travis, Jordan Rudess, Tony Levin, and others, Insurgentes is somewhat of an all-star event, though Wilson, with his stellar guitar, bass, keyboard, and vocals, steals the show. "Salvaging" is one of the more adventurous pieces here, an 8-minute gem that provides moments of bombast as well as atmospheric, proggy bliss, as big, fat, bass & guitar riffs mesh with floating, spacey keyboards. The near 6-minute keyboard wash "Veneno Para las Hadas" is a nice piece, with Wilson's gentle crooning over lush synths, piano, and Travis' clarinet, but the tune never really goes anywhere. "No Twilight Within the Courts of the Sun" is the real corker here, a frantic ride into King Crimson styled prog, complete with wild guitar solos and crashing rhythms, which slowly morphs into a pastoral lushness that wouldn't have seemed out of place on an old Genesis or Pink Floyd record. Both "Significant Other" and "Only Child" are more pop flavored numbers, though both have closing sections that are quite bombastic and dramatic. "Twilight Coda" is a gentle instrumental featuring Wilson's acoustic guitar against some majestic piano strains from Rudess, while "Get All You Deserve" is another one of those slow moving pop numbers that doesn't really have much of a point till the raging finale. The title track closes things out, with Wilson's voice gently caressing the microphone over tranquil piano, guitar loops, harmomium, and bass koto.

You can easily say that Steven Wilson has mixed things up here on Insurgentes and delivered a release that takes bits and pieces from all the projects he is currently involved with and put together something new and varied. Though there are moments of pure genius here, overall some of Insurgentes lacks focus and tends to meander a bit, but when you can say that half of a CD features killer material, that's reason enough to investigate. Sonically speaking, this is an awesome sounding release, and for audio nuts, get the version with the bonus DVD-A included to blast on your system.

Track Listing
1. Harmony Korine
2. Abandoner
3. Salvaging
4. Veneno Para las Hadas
5. No Twilight Within the Courts of the Sun
6. Significant Other
7. Only Child
8. Twilight Coda
9. Get All You Deserve
10. Insurgentes

Added: August 22nd 2009
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Artist Website
Hits: 2362
Language: english

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