& Pure Reason Revolution
Thursday, 28th June 2007
Melkweg, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Article By Ian Butler
Photos by Bart Jan van der Vorst
If you are reading this web site it's probably because you have an interest in this type of music, and honestly PT deserve to be seen in concert as they have evolved to be one of the best bands on the live circuit. Simply put, go and see them in concert before it's too late!
The Melkweg is an excellent concert venue in Amsterdam, and with credible sound and atmosphere. It's a shame to learn that it's reportedly going out of business soon, according to the local SPITS newspaper, but we will see.
Pure Reason Revolution were the support band for the evening. PRR aren't playing traditional 'prog', but similarly like PT, they are actually being progressive and moving their music forward. The band are very energetic and many of their songs are long, with intertwining heavy riffs, vocal harmonies, driving keyboard bass and sometimes dance like rhythms. Overall, I thought that they were excellent, despite the lack of applause from the audience. See the Eindhoven PT review for more details.
PT's set was about two hours and mainly featured the new Fear Of A Blank Planet album, with some surprise back catalogue songs included. The show has progressed and now they have rear projection 'movies' to accompany most of their songs, gone are the days of the 'Fruit Salad' Lighting, when they toured with the Ozric Tentacles!
Predictably, the Tree opened with the title track Fear Of A Blank Planet to rousing applause, and drummer Gavin Harrison driving the sound in his own style. This track worked extremely well live and the power of the track really came through and set the tone for the concert. Lightbulb Sun, from Lightbulb Sun album was a surprise, it's a pity that the crowd didn't seem to recognize it. John Wesley took the solo guitar duties.
PT reverted to featuring the new album with My Ashes and the new monster 18 minute track Anaesthetize. Steve Wilson called Anaesthetize their 'rock track'. I think that SW has always enjoyed a small amount of self and genre mockery as music tends to be classified. Look at SW's output and try and concisely classify that! Anaesthetize was incredible live, but it reminds me of how much of the bands sound has evolved, using backing tracks, layers of guitars when no one on stage is actually playing what you hear, but this is progression and technology, I suppose. It also reminds me of how much influence has come from bands like Opeth and Paatos into the PT sound.
For me some of the highlights were as follows. Sever, from Signify was a treat, and this sounded fresh, like it was from the new album, great to hear an older classic with a new line up and a harder edge to it. Likewise was an extended version of ‘Even Less' from Stupid Dream, still one of PT's best and definitive tracks to date. Amongst the crowd's favorites were ‘Open Car', including that typical SW sublime chorus, and Blackest Eyes from In Absentia got everyone jumping around, well heads nodding anyway!
Sleep Together ended the set and is one of their more obvious 'rock' songs, but it brings a huge grin to my face every time I hear it, really soul satisfying, and shows that Gav H can actually use relatively simple drums effectively J
Overall I think the songs on the new album work better live than on the album, but actually that's no surprise to me given the talent of the musicians. A great concert from a band on form, and a super slick performance from unassuming and dedicated musicians, but what no Trains? J
Fear Of A Blank Planet
Drown With Me
Way Out Of Here
Mother And Child Divided
Porcupine Tree Official Website
Porcupine Tree MySpace
Pure Reason Revolution
Pure Reason Revolution MySpace
DPRP Concert Review of PT at Eindhoven on 26th June 2007