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Porcupine Tree - Fear Of A Blank Planet
I've got a confession to make I guess. The first time I heard of Porcupine Tree was through Opeth, when band mastermind Steve Wilson produced Blackwater Park and sang a few lines on (I think) 'Bleak'
I really liked his voice so that's when I listened to
In Absentia and thought: "Hey this is a cool band', thank you Opeth. I'm not at all familiar with their older material so my opinion regarding their latest release Fear Of A Blank Planet only applies as a comparison to their last two albums.

To start that comparison, I thought Deadwing was a bit of a let down. It had a few amazing tracks, but overall I thought the album to be a bit disappointing. So enter their new album.  It's somewhat of a concept-album regarding Steve Wilson's concerns about the current MTV-youth, their lack of an attention-span and will to consume all kinds of prefab shit without appreciation of real art. Maybe Steve sees his record sales decline. 

No just kidding,  but his concerns are founded in truth. There is an alarming case of people dumbing down going on where blingbling, boobs, guns and Sensation White are considered top of the bill. Of course this is not a new thing, the 'metal community' has always been an outsider group so we see those things all the time and even in our own genre, where breakdowns, At The Gates and a few emo choruses are considered commercial king right now, so that's what everyone does.

Relevance issues aside, how does this stack up musically? Well, pretty good. Centerpiece of this record is 'Anesthetize', a 17 and a half minute monster of a track, with some of the heaviest shit Porcupine Tree ever put to tape. Almost Meshuggah-like riffs appear now and then, and the outburst about 11 minutes in the song is insane. But the song-writing in general is of a very high level, much more 'engaged' than their last album in my opinion.

The best word for this album is probably 'balanced'. We have the heavy shit, the clean build ups, the subtle electronic additions, and of course Gavin Harrison who gets a lot of space on this record to do his drumming thing. The production and sound quality are (as usual) outstanding, and everything sounds as it should really. 

Porcupine Tree fans, buy this now. Everyone else, give it a listen.
Porcupine Tree - Fear Of A Blank Planet
90/1001Details Atlantic / Wea
Released on Tuesday Apr 24th, 2007
Prog rock

Writer @Ce-El-Wan on Saturday Apr 7th, 2007

Tags: #Porcupine Tree
Tracklisting 1. Fear Of A Blank Planet
2. My Ashes
3. Anesthetize
4. Sentimental
5. Way Out Of Here
6. Sleep Together
Line up Steve Wilson - guitars, vocals, keyboards
Richard Barbieri - keyboards & synthesizers
Colin Edwin - bass guitar
Gavin Harrison - drums