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In Absentia is brilliant

Discussion in 'Music' started by DaveDickey, Jul 2, 2004.

  1. DaveDickey

    DaveDickey Stunt Coordinator

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    Sorry, I know there are other threads about Porcupine Tree's "In Absentia," but I just have to make a comment...
    This band is brilliant. I'm a classic rock ol' fart. I've been listening to the DVDA all night (yes, I have no life)and I'm just blown away. I don't think great bands are made on the backs of instrumentalists or great singers, though there are some exceptions - it's probably just in the arrangement and the chemistry. Porcupine Tree just has "it," whatever it is. I hope the band knows how good they are. If you haven't heard In Absentia yet, you're really missing out. Dave
     
  2. Andrew Bunk

    Andrew Bunk Screenwriter

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    I agree-this is one of the most well done records I've heard in a long time. I haven't heard the hirez version, but the regular CD is one of the best sounding releases I've heard.

    It's too bad their back catalog isn't readily available. I finally broke down and got their last 2 CD's (Stupid Dream-1999 and Lightbulb Sun-2000) on Ebay for about $20 each. Lightbulb Sun sounds like a logical predecessor to In Absentia, and has some great songs as well. Stupid Dream is good too, but nothing grabbed me immediately like In Absentia. Also, In Absentia probably has their heaviest moments as a band. From what I understand any of their releases before Stupid Dream were of a more freeform experimental nature, so fans of the latter day PT might not be into that. In Absentia is easily their best release yet IMO.

    I read they are working on a new record, so hopefully they can keep the magic going. Also their website has made mention of domestic re-releases of Stupid Dream and Lightbulb Sun on their current label, so there is hope.
     
  3. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    Well, I'm a big Tree fan, so yes, I agree. [​IMG]

    Their earlier material is great. The only album I don't like is their very first, On the Sunday of Life, which was put together as kind of a joke (though you can't tell from the liner notes). I really only like one song from it, Radioactive Toy, and there's a killer version of that on their live Coma Divine album, anyway.

    I have never heard Voyage 34, which is just a few very long trippy instrumentals, from what I understand, inspired by an acid trip.

    Up the Downstair is a really cool album. At this early stage it was all pretty much Steve Wilson's show, and there's a nice mix of textures and sound. Highly recommended.

    The Sky Moves Sideways features extended pieces, marking the most overtly experimental major Porcupine Tree release. Fans of Pink Floyd, a la Shine On You Crazy Diamond, would enjoy this.

    Signify marks what I consider their first masterpiece. More importantly, it's when the regular band was set. This is, in a sense, the "real" first Porcupine Tree album. It is certainly moodier and calmer than In Absentia, but very very good.

    Stupid Dream finds them getting more introspective. This was my first PT album. It took a couple listens to appreciate it.

    Lightbulb Sun sees them focusing their songwriting, adding some more riffs, and getting more powerful.

    In Absentia is a masterpiece. Steve Wilson said recently in an interview that despite PT's albums being mainly mellow and a bit psychedelic, heavy music is his original inspiration. That, and working closely with Opeth, insures us another hard hitting set of tunes on the next album, which they are working on.

    I'm sorry to hear people are having trouble getting their back catalogue. Signify was re-released, so you should be able to find that. I believe Stupid Dream and Lightbulb Sun are getting the same treatment. You can also try their web site directly, or amazon.com marketplace.
     
  4. ChrisDixon

    ChrisDixon Second Unit

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    Yes, both Stupid Dream and Lightbulb Sun are being re-released in the near future. Their last three (IA, LS, and SD) are among my favorite albums in my catalogue, and I too am waiting impatiently for the next one. I just can't seem to get into Signify or The Sky Moves Sideways though. Up the Downstair is cool, but different.

    I would encourage anyone to get the DVD-A version. Not only is the album and mix completely brilliant, but buying it supports the decision that DTS made to take a chance on a relatively unknown band. They really did it right, and if it sells well, they will continue to work with deserving bands. Otherwise, we may get mostly older "classic" re-issues.

    Just saw this posted on a forum:

    "The current issue of Drum! magazine has an interview with Neil Peart in which he raves about PT. He says they are an "excellent band" despite being "completely unheralded" and "under the radar". He mentions Gavin and SW's playing on IA in particular, and he even quotes from the chorus of The Sound of Muzak."

    Chris
     
  5. gene c

    gene c Producer

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    When I first heard about IA from members here I thought I would give it a try, keeping my hopes realistic. After about 45 seconds into "Blackest Eyes" I knew this was going to be one of my favorites. Every track on this is first rate. Highly recommended. Best bit of info I have picked up on the entire forum!
     
  6. Sheldon C

    Sheldon C Second Unit

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    I am almost exclusively a metal head, but I love In Absentia. If there were more "mellow" music like this out there, I might start expanding my tastes a bit.
     
  7. Brian Dobbs

    Brian Dobbs Ambassador

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    i listened to the DVD-A today too. coool.
     
  8. Brian L

    Brian L Screenwriter

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    A bit of a PITA to find this, no? Nothing at Best Buy, Circuit City, Elusive Disc...

    The only place I could find it was at the DTS site, and I am assuming that is list price (about $20).

    Anyone have any alternatives for buy this online?

    BGL
     
  9. DaveDickey

    DaveDickey Stunt Coordinator

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    One more observation about the incredible "In Absentia"...

    Jimmy Page once described Led Zeppelin's style as comprised of elements of "light & dark." Songs like "Over The Hills And Far Away" and "Stairway" are the best examples of what he was referring to. Porcupine Tree uses this technique to absolute perfection. The slow, melodic balladry mixed with hard rock is just phenomenal.

    In Absentia is the first PT album I've heard. You can't imagine how badly I want to hear the rest of their music. I'm tempted to wait for hirez releases, but there's no way I can wait it out. I haven't been this impressed with "new" music in years. Dave
     
  10. DaveDickey

    DaveDickey Stunt Coordinator

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    Brian, AcousticSounds has it. That's where I bought mine. Dave
     
  11. DaveDickey

    DaveDickey Stunt Coordinator

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    I just checked around - CD Universe has it for $17.09
    They have quite a few of the CD's too. Some are imports costing up to $43!!! Maybe PT is plagued by poor management?
     
  12. Brian L

    Brian L Screenwriter

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    Thanks guys...guess I need to ad short cuts to those sites.

    BGL
     
  13. Ed E Lee

    Ed E Lee Agent

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    I'll have to admit that some of the PT fanboys in certain places that I net visit had kinda gave me a somewhat ho hum attitude towards the band, but I do enjoy IA and I listen to it from time to time. There's a good mix of the heavy and other rock idioms that I enjoy.



    IA is PT's first major label release, so that's expected to be everywhere you can find cd's. The earlier stuff isn't, so it's much harder to find. I see that they've reissued stuff, so if you're patient, you'll get something you can afford down the line.
     
  14. DaveDickey

    DaveDickey Stunt Coordinator

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    Trust me, ed E Lee, I can afford it. It's more a matter of "why" than "can't afford it." Dave
     
  15. KevinJ

    KevinJ Supporting Actor

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    i have a feeling warner/atlantic'll re-release pt's back catalog in its entirety at some point imho
     
  16. DaveDickey

    DaveDickey Stunt Coordinator

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    Thirty years from now, we'll be talking about In Absentia -
    There's no doubt. I was listening to it on Friday night, and it has not left my player. My two years on HTF, I've never pumped a band... well, this is it. These guys are great. THANK YOU DTS ENTERTAINMENT!!! Some executive somewhere in your mix has his s*it straight. Dave
     
  17. Andrew Bunk

    Andrew Bunk Screenwriter

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    Just picked up the DVD-A version of In Absentia at Borders along with Signify which I hadn't heard but sounds great from clips I've heard on the PT site.

    Part of my decision to by the DVD-A was the bonus tracks, so hopefully those are worth it.

    Couple questions:

    1) Any difference in the mix between the DVD-A track and the DTS track? I have a Pioneer player that can play DVD-A but I don't have the separate 5.1 connections hooked up-I just send signal from my player to my receiver via the digital coaxial cable. I will likely play the DTS track first.

    2) Does anyone know an easy of way burning the 3 bonus tracks
    to CD? Since the DVD has a 2.0 PCM track I'm hoping I can use those to make a CD so I can listen to them in my car. Right know I have the ability to record the composite audio outs of the DVD player into my PC, but if I can capture the audio internally while playing the disc on my DVD-Rom that would be preferable.

    And once again, IA is just a masterpiece.
     
  18. NickSo

    NickSo Producer

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    AFter seeing this thread, and taking a preview listen on some online stores, i decided i wanted the CD... Unfortunately, nobody has it locally!

    A&B sound was sold out, though they're the ones who most likely will get it in soonest. They had a few of their other albums though.
    FutureShop didnt have any from Porcupine Tree.
    HMV didnt even have the plastic marker for Porcupine Tree.

    Ohwell, lookin forward to hearing it tho
     
  19. John Geelan

    John Geelan Screenwriter

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    And don't forget to see Porcupine Tree live the next time they tour the USA. I've seen them 4 times now here in NY over the last few years and they rock on stage!


    The release of In Abstentia on DTS/DVDA is just one of those miracles you rarely get in music these days.
     
  20. gene c

    gene c Producer

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    Like finding a needle in a Porcupine Tree? Well, maybe not.
     

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