Hand. Cannot. Erase.

Steven Wilson – 4½ Review

Steven Wilson – 4½ Review

Steven Wilson is one of music’s best producers and, as I ranted and raved last year, quickly becoming one of progressive music’s best songwriters, as well. Hand. Cannot. Erase. was, as I’ve just recently written again, a triumph. However, like all triumphs—yes, all of them—part of honing in on the “triumphant” is knowing when to edit. That doesn’t always mean that what was cut was bad, of course, and is Steven Wilson and his trusty (and ridiculously talented) backing band knocking out 37 minutes of excellent leftovers.” Yeah, I guess you should probably just expect a lovefest.

Riverside – Love, Fear and the Time Machine Review

Riverside – Love, Fear and the Time Machine Review

Poland’s Riverside should be no stranger to the dedicated reader of these Angry pages. After discovering the band’s Anno Domini High Definition in 2009, Riverside has sneakily become one of the staples of my playlist. I wasn’t completely enamored with Shrine of New Generation Slaves; but its chill, more reflective moments are the ones that I keep coming back to: “The Depth of Self Delusion,” yes, but especially, “We Got Used to Us,” which has a slow groove and a transcendent chorus. Still, SoNGS lacked the punch and progressive drive that ADHD—and the band’s earlier material—had, and landed far more in the territory of post-Marillion prog, without the brooding darkness into which late Gazpacho has wandered recentlySoNGS was, arguably, nothing more or less than a road sign, though, pointing towards 2015’s latest record: Love, Fear and the Time Machine.

Record(s) o’ the Month – March 2015

Record(s) o’ the Month – March 2015

Ok, this is getting fucking ridiculous. It’s actually kind of ironic that this has taken as long as it has taken to get me to the place where I’m putting up the Record(s) o’ the Month for March at the very end of April, because March 2015 is probably the best month for music that I can think of in ages. The quality of records released in March of 2015 could practically produce half of my Top 10(ish) of 2015, and that’s not even a joke. Going even further, this is one of the most difficult choices that I have had to make for Record(s) o’ the Month, because the best albums of the month are really close. And while indecision is not the reason this took so long—you can blame my job which is too much for a single person—it certainly played a minor role. But without further ado, I present to you the Record o’ the Month for March, 2015.

Steven Wilson – Hand. Cannot. Erase. Review

Steven Wilson – Hand. Cannot. Erase. Review

“Unlike many of my friends and colleagues, I’ve rarely been moved by Steven Wilson’s music. With notable exceptions, Porcupine Tree‘s studio work put me to sleep. Nor, I must admit, was I a fan of Insurgentes or Grace for Drowning at release. Despite having long been harangued for being an Opeth fanboy, I could not get into Storm Corrosion. In fact, if you’d asked me 5 years ago, I would have said that Steven Wilson’s genius is the ways in which he makes other bands sound incredible. That changed for me, however, with The Raven Who Refused to Sing from 2012. So when I heard that Wilson had a new record coming, I was intrigued: would it keep up the momentum and style of The Raven?” Well, can it?