Up the Downstair

Being a weeklie podcaste from Madison, Wisconsin featuring several remarkable curiosities therein occurring being a compendium of live music from divers artistes

Show #8: Porcupine Tree (Part 1)

July 20th, 2005

This week’s show features the band which gave this podcast its name – Porcupine Tree. Since the early 90s, PT have released 8 proper albums and their sound has progressed along the way so that their latest, Deadwing, sounds virtually nothing like the first PT album, On the Sunday of Life. The band was originally just Steve Wilson with his guitars and an array of keyboards and drum machines with On the Sunday of Life being a collection culled from various cassette-only albums that Wilson had put together. With an album out, Wilson released Voyage 34, an EP about tripping on LSD. It heavily featured dance rhythms and ambient soundscapes. For the second album, Up the Downstair, Wilson recruited old friend Colin Edwin to add bass to one track and Richard Barbieri for electronics on another. On the next outing, Wilson made Edwin and Barbieri full-time members and brought in Chris Maitland on drums. Together they created The Sky Moves Sideways which brought Pink Floyd influences to the fore and got the band labeled “the Pink Floyd of the 90s”.

In 1996, the band released Signify and this is when, for me, their oeuvre gets really interesting and is also the point at which I got into their music. The album saw an increased influence of electronica in the form of samples and sequencers which were more focused as well as the impressions of Krautrock. (The band did a cover of “Hallogalo” by Neu! at this time.) After Signify, the band would release Stupid Dream which featured more “pop” songs and heavier guitar. In addition, saxophone was featured on a couple tracks.

So tonight, I will feature the earlier Tree with a later show to cover their turn towards the heavy. We have the title tracks of their second and third albums followed by a trio of songs from Signify. And to round things out, I’m including a sneak peak at their later work with a ditty from Stupid Dream.

“Up the Downstair”
4 June 1994
De Kuip – Uden, The Netherlands

“The Sky Moves Sideways”
“Sever”
“Waiting”
“Sleep of No Dreaming”
2 October 1997
Filharmoic Pomorska, Bydgoszcz, Poland

“Piano Lessons”
13 March 1999
Kinoteatr Zwiazkowiec, Krakow, Poland

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Porcupine Tree

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One Response to “Show #8: Porcupine Tree (Part 1)”

  1. Anonymous says:

    I LOVE PORCUPINE TREE!! Thank you so much for putting them on. Please keep them coming

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