5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Not as self-indulgent as I'd feared...,
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This review is from: The Raven That Refused To Sing (And Other Stories) (Audio CD)
Having heard SW's comments about how he saw himself as a Frank Zappa type of musical director fronting a crack band of technically excellent musicians and having heard the opening track, "Luminol" prior to the album's release, I feared that this album was going to be an hour of self indulgent over-playing. Wrong!
Having heard this once (in 5.1 surround sound) I can say that this sounds excellent already and captures the spine-tingling atmospheres that are there on the very best of SW's past work ('Together We're Stranger', 'Deadwing', 'Storm Corrosion', 'Ghosts On Magnetic Tape'....)
'Luminol' is actually the weakest track on the album and not really representative of the overall feel. I think this is better than SW's previous two solo albums and is certainly an improvement on the later Porcupine Tree albums (been a fan for twenty years and think the albums from 'Stupid Dream' through to 'Deadwing' were their peak).
The production is excellent (as you'd expect from SW) and the whole band is, I'm glad to say, playing as an ensemble, rather than showing off. Can't wait to see him in Manchester this week and am hopeful that sometime soon we'll see SW & Tim Bowness put out a new No-Man album (the best British band of the past two decades).