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4.7 out of 5 stars19
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 9 January 2010
As I sit here at my computer in the early hours of the morning, headphones in and Voyage 34 on, I feel the sweet waves of sound licking at my brain like a pleasant drug and I struggle with even the simplest of tasks, like typing this review. This alone is a grand salute to the numbing effect this wonderful album has on one's senses, a sleep inducing marvel that grabs you by the soul and won't let go. This trip is really necessary!

In 1992, Steven Wilson achieved the impossible, alone, he redefined psychedelic rock. Taking the acid-laden cheerfulness that it once was and transforming it into what can only be called a collage of masterful ambience, complete with long soundscapes that make you feel like you're resting in the embrace of a white, fluffy cloud in a dense, blue sky. Not suprising then, that apart from some sampled voices that this record is completely instrumental!
The record is split up in to two distinct parts; Phases 1 & 2 portray a magnificent spectrum of colour and shade, floating blissfully into each passage of play. Phase 1 sets the scene as the album's narrator guides you through the harrowing journey of Brian and his friends, taking acid and chewing on plastic flashbulbs. When you've become comfortable with your surroundings, you're abruptly taken higher as the music transforms into an airy, dreamlike rock euphoria with guitar solos to boot! Yes, at this stage you can dump your Pink Floyd comparisons, forget what the future holds for this artist and just float, blissfully in the moment. After Phase 2's haunting opening, the track takes on a similar path; cradling the listener in a psychedelic daydream where waking up is hard to do.
As for the remixes, Phases 3 & 4 have been expertly woven into the fabric of Voyage's blanket-like embrace, working as a downer in the 'trip' if you like. Phases 3 & 4 bring the listener back down to earth with an intensely dark, long look at the harsh realities of your free-spirited journey. The final passages prey on the guilt-ridden underside of a drug like experience, portraying two sides of the same story. This of course could be tagged as genius, if it weren't for the fact that it's two separate EP releases compiled into one!

"The Complete Trip" is an compilation that will change your outlook on music forever, you won't have the faintest idea what hit you. Enjoy your trip!

Steve Holland,
Lord of Plastic Flashbulbs, January 2010.

Edit: Needless to say, the bulk of this review was typed up AFTER the record had finished.
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on 25 October 2008
I bought this after hearing Phase 1 live.

This is what progressive rock and music is all about doing something totally different with utter conviction and just going for it.

This album is a musical journey about an LSD trip with the initial ingestion, journey into euphoria,the fear as the drug bites into the victim and the chaos that follows then ebbing out out into an almost trance like state of repitition and confusion and then the end.The music is first class and extremely powerful and the narration of some American expert throughout gives the sense of this is being watched by us looking in on someones private world.Sampled and repeated outtakes from stoned people interwoven with the music is also very effective in that there perspectives and their frazzeled mind are so out of touch .

A great concept album and years infront of it's time (recorded in 1992).
A great album for the car as you need to hear it all the way through for full effect.

The album does have Floyds (A brick in the wall pt2 to the guitar riff - admitted) but this a first class progressive rock album - very dark, poweful and the moods flow effortlessly from one stage to the next.

This to me shows just how good PT are and as others have said this is the best pink floyd album that floyd never made.

Just buy it - Enjoy
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on 19 October 2011
Voyage 34
So some back history of voyage 34 this was going to be part of the album up the downstairs but was removed to make the album work better but he didn't want it wasted so released it as an EP.
If you listen to this EP after UTD up the downstairs you will link it easy as its all based on the same concept of LSD trip and the music flows in such a way. The EP is in 4 parts phase I-IV .
Phase 1 is the best of the album and is concerted on brain that takes the LSD and has a bad trip. The narrator of the album is the same as the one from what are you listening to on UTD the way the song is played is mainly guitar based with the electronic sounds coming through. This is the phase that has the Pink Floyd guitar part in most of it. Then as the song goes on it gets a little more heavy in the guitar and is played at a faster rate. The playing on this album is amazing he did a amazing job of that.
Phase 2 is about a woman who is on a LSD trip and is similar to phase 1 but with a slower build up and again has the PF guitar parts with more different electronic and drums to part one and has narration by the same man but there is a woman talking about her trip of how the walls melt and how water feels while on a trip. Phase 2 has more amazing guitar work on and has a phew different parts to it as it starts slow then the PF parts then a more original guitar part then back to PF.
Phase 3-4 are both very similar and are more electronic based to the previous 2. Not as interesting but still good.
This is a very good EP but be warned it is a little repetitive and the phases are between 12 to 20 min's so is a long EP. I believe this EP would have been good as it was at just phase 1 and 2 but 3 and 4 are just a little bonus.
This is not their best album or EP but is still very good. I say if you like UTD this is a must have as it is a continuation of the album as it should have been originally. A must have for big fans of early work by PT and a must at least have a listen by a PT fan. Not a starter album as I said for on the Sunday of life but one for the true fans.
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on 18 March 2013
Arguably Wilson's finest work. Although his perfectionism and integrity are never in doubt, sometimes his lyrics are mannered and compromise his musical vision. With this album the music rests alone, organic, flowing and atmospheric. Regarded by Wilson as 'of its time', I would suggest it holds a place at the top of his canon of work.
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on 9 December 2012
Mate Played Part Of This Album Too Me & I Was Really Surprised At What I Was Hearing! Pink Floyd/Hawkwind Is The Only Comparison I Could Think Of.Played This Over & Over,Very Trippy Sounds But Really Well Put Together & Very Entertaining.Well Worth Buying This One,Full Credit to The Artists Behind This One.
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on 22 May 2014
A brilliant album which I am very happy to now own on vinyl. Very different to the later, better known Porcupine Tree records, and different again from any of Steven Wilson's solo ventures and other products.

This record is more trance, psychedelic space rock, which samples heavily from artists from Pink Floyd to Van Der Graaf Generator. If you are interested in music of the psychedelic kind then you will love it. I am a fan of all the Porcupine Tree albums but I can see why some may not be too keen on this album.

It is nonetheless a remarkable and beautiful piece of music that takes you on a long, spectacular journey and challenges perceptions on drugs and drug culture.

The sound quality is absolutely pristine too. This is the sort of record that makes the very most of the vinyl player, the differences between the vinyl version and the digital version are striking.
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on 19 May 2011
I have been a rational fan of Porcopine Tree for years and have a passion for all of their albums for the contempt they deserve, and they all have their own desirable aspects, more so than any other band I have had the fortune to have listened to. They just do it and hit that spot of variable prog rock and this album did it again for me. An acceptional array of melodic brilliance. I defy anyone that likes Porcupine Tree not to like this, it is different, but bloody gorgeous in all of its diverse entirety. With a complex systematic story telling, not removed from Pink Floyd's 'Brick in the Wall' that even they would be proud of. Well done it's pure 'Por e tree' Love it.
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on 8 May 2015
Definitely a wonderful album.
The songs on this album are not really songs, they are more like musical landscapes creating all kinds of different moods.
And although you can sometimes hear influences of Pink Floyd and even bits of Pink Floyd songs, it's very nicely woven into their own music.
The guitar solo's are also very fantastic, and all i can say is that Steve Wilson is one helluva guitar player.
For fans of progressive music a very recommended album.
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on 10 January 2006
Discovered Porcupine Tree through Deadwing abum via Opeth (me and how many?) I knew this wouldn't be as hard as Deadwing but I didn't know it would be the greatest Pink Floyd album never recorded!! I recently came across somebody complaining P.T. were not Prog as they hadn't progressed the form. True but simply don't categorize them Just listen to the music. This album is a floataway, blissed out masterpiece of music even if the guitar work is out-takes from The Wall. I loved it BUT it IS derivative. Be warned.
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on 7 March 2012
This is definitely a very love/hate album. It's hard to get into, but eventually you're able to understand the true musical appeal to it.
It's an instrumental EP, but with some voice-overs (a man talking about some guy's LSD trip).
A must buy, but listen it before you do. Just in case it's not your cup of tea.
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