Porcupine Tree Frontman On New EP And Future Projects
Band Photo: Porcupine Tree (?)
Steven Wilson, frontman for esteemed band Porcupine Tree, recently gave an interview with Alternative-Zine - some excerpts follow:
A-Z: Fear of a Blank Planet is a definitive concept album, how would you summarise the concept/s of the album?
SW: Well, basically it reflects my concerns for the current younger generation; a generation born into an era of accessible information, living vicariously through gadgets where they can download everything via the internet – music, movies, information, and pornography. Everything is available through the internet. About how all this affects the human quality of curiosity, and I believe that curiosity is one of humanity's most important qualities. Without curiosity we will never find what's underneath the surface; the different meanings and interpretations and levels that there are to music as an example. How the overload of information affects their curiosity about the world outside their bedroom. My fear for this potentially blank generation. Or to use more a romantic expression, do the young people of today have the same sense of soul?
A-Z: Writing the album (FOABP) in Israel as well as on tour, probably made it hard for the album to be a group effort. How did the writing process go?
SW: I wrote the long piece around February while recording "Blackfield" at night. It was refreshing to write in a different country. In England Richard wrote the basic music of "My Ashes" and in July the band worked on four tracks together, of which only one got to be on the record. The other three tracks will come out on an EP coming out later this year.
The three tracks together last for about 25 minuets, and we will probably add some of the tracks recorded on the BBC sessions supporting the FOABP album, expending the EP to around 40 minutes of music.
A-Z: Porcupine tree issued their first DVD "Arriving Somewhere…", and a Blackfield DVD is planned to be released around next year. Do you enjoy watching live DVDs by other bands? And do you find it appealing to create tour documentary DVDs like so?
SW: ... I think people will enjoy a real Porcupine Tree show much more then they can enjoy a DVD. On the other hand, I know that it's not possible for everyone around the world to see Porcupine Tree perform, and it is nice to have it documented and to have the chance to experience the Porcupine Tree live show in this way. I think we will try to release a live DVD from every album cycle from now on. Making a DVD is a serious time consumer, it's very hard work. If you think recording an album is hard, here you have the visuals as well as the audio aspects to take care of...
A-Z: The second "Continuum" album will be release next month, what can you tell me about it?
SW: It's slow doom metal with continuum ambient textures on the top. It's very much Sunn O))) inspired, more pushing everything into the red and slowing things down.
A-Z: What other future projects are in plan?
SW: Hopefully the project with Opeth's Mikael Åkerfeldt, which will probably have Mike Portnoy on drums. It will be heavier then Porcupine Tree but softer then Opeth. Also, I'm planning on releasing a first solo album under the Steven Wilson name. I've written songs that don't belong to any project. It will be more laid back, and will have some longer ambitious tracks along with shorter songs. Maybe I will remix some of the cover versions which I've released. I feel there are some really good ones, such as the Alanis track (i.e. "Thank U", originally by Alanis Morissette), that should be heard, but weren't released in a way that they will be approachable to many people, being only available from my mail order until now.
A-Z: What can interest you in music these days? And what albums do love these days?
SW: Something I've never heard before. Something unique. Something that when I first hear it intrigues me and it grasps me. Good production work is also very important to me because I see myself as more of a producer then a guitarist or a writer. Musicians like Trent Reznor, who is a genius. Of what I’ve heard recently I love the new albums by Nine Inch Nails, LCD Soundsystem, Neurosis, Stars of the Lid, and Gojira.
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