78 of 86 people found the following review helpful
You Can Polish A Third.....,
This review is from: Third (Audio CD)Portishead's Dummy was quite an achievement - rarely does a band come from nowhere with their debut and blow people's minds with a truly original sound. The second album, whilst perhaps sounding more 'live' on a few tracks, was essentially more of the same - which is no bad thing when your music is as unique as theirs. But there comes a time when a truly great band must prove their genius by going in a new direction, and somehow succeeding in retaining the vein of quality. Radiohead did it, Bjork did it, and now Portishead have done it - they just did it more emphatically....
Third is an album that took ten years to come. Barrow, Utley and Gibbons have done an admiral thing - they have spent many years cultivating the record, probably writing and rewriting, recording, binning and re-recording, to eventually have an album's worth of songs worthy to appear on a Portishead album. They have also, by the sounds of it, been listening to a LOT of different types of music along the way. Because no matter what people tell you, this is an EXTRAORDINARY record which, with the exception of two songs, sounds nothing like their first two albums.
Of course, Gibbon's voice is unmistakable, and that in itself makes it Portishead. But the way she uses it is different - gone are the melodic choruses from songs like All Mine and Sour Times (believe me, they are melodic compared to THIS album) - instead Gibbons' voice is now used almost as an instrument, another sonic layer, the subtle beauty of which may only hit you after several listens.
As well the vocals, the instrumentation on Third is very different from the previous albums. No scratches this time around, few breaks - instead, very harsh industrial drumming (Machine Gun)and doomy, proggy guitar riffs (Silence). There is even a moment, with stand-out track, The Rip, that you could dance along to in your bedroom, although you might want to paint your walls black first - because Third is one of the darkest albums you're likely to hear this year.
No band that I can think of has created a follow-up album like this - every song is unique, they are all superb, and it is nothing like the earlier albums. Moreover, despite Barrow et al's obvious desire to do something new, Third still feels organic when you listen to it - it isn't the sound of pretention, it's the sound of perfection.
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Initial post: 26 Mar 2013 21:36:19 GMT
Last edited by the author on 26 Mar 2013 21:44:14 GMT
"Third is an album that took ten years to come. Barrow, Utley and Gibbons have done an admiral thing..."
Nelson did it first.
In reply to an earlier post on 2 Dec 2013 12:21:20 GMT
Ettrick 8 says:
I don't understnad your comment. Could you please explain the reference
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