If admirers of Brit art rocker Steven Wilson were understandably disappointed when he announced earlier this year that he was putting his herforeto principal project, Porcupine Tree on indefinite hiatus; then many were consoled by the fact he would have more time to devote to his – multivarious – other activities. A noted musical polymath, Wilson has notched up collaborations with Tim Bowness (as NoMan), Robert Fripp, Anathema, Marillion, Fish, Dream Theater, Aviv Geffen (as Blackfield) and Pendulum, in addition to largely-solo studio projects such as Bass Communion and Incredible Expanding Mindfuck.
We’ve been spoiled this past year or so, with Grace For Drowning, his second solo album released last September and Storm Corrosion his long-awaited collaboration with Swedish prog-metal titan, Mikael Åkerfeldt this May. Both were critically acclaimed; deservedly so, and whilst SC has no plans to tour at present, Wilson has taken GFD on the road to three continents, and more dates have been announced for 2013 (see below). Most exciting of all was the news that Wilson was taking his touring band into the studio to write and rehearse a new album.
In the last week, StevenWilsonHQ uploaded clips to YouTube, showing Wilson and band (Marco Minnemann, Nick Beggs, Guthrie Govan, Adam Holzman, Theo Travis) recording in LA with acclaimed musician and producer Alan Parsons (Beatles, Hollies, Pink Floyd, Al Stewart) at the helm, this September 2012. It’s perhaps foolhardy to try and draw too many conclusions from such short snippets; nonetheless they’re strongly suggestive of a body of work at least as eclectic as GFD, with much of that album’s improvisation-led feel and strong dynamics. As much as I’m disappointed that original touring guitarist Aziz Ibrahim was excluded from the ongoing tour – and thus the eventual recording sessions by well publicised US visa difficulties – it’ll be interesting to hear what Govan brings to the band (a man with a CV ranging from Asia to Periphery, via Dizzee Rascal). These also give an interesting insight into SW the taskmaster, perhaps a little more single-minded and dictatorial by contrast to his previously-seen, supporting role in studio footage with Opeth and Porcupine Tree‘s collaborative mode. Take a look and tell me your appetite isn’t whetted just like mine:
2013 tour dates thusfar confirmed are:
March 1 – Manchester Academy, UK
March 2 – Glasgow ABC, UK
March 4 – London Royal festival Hall, UK
March 16 – FiladelfiakyrkanStockholm, Sweden
March 18 – Sentrum Scene, Oslo, Norway
March 19 – Vega, Copenhagen, Denmark,
March 28 – Teatro Della Luna, Assago, Italy
Tickets go on sale on 19th October.
If you can’t wait that long, then succor is now available in the form of Get All You Deserve ,a DVD/Blu Ray recorded live by director and long-time Wilson collaborator Lasse Hoile in Mexico City this April, to tide you over. It features a selection of material from both Insurgentes and Grace For Drowning, plus the non-album track Luminol, which may appear in some form on the upcoming release. Watch the latter here:
And order it here:
p.s. My apologies for the really lame title of this post.