ARTIST:

STEVEN WILSON

(UNITED KINGDOM)
TITLE:

THE RAVEN THAT REFUSED TO SING (AND OTHER STORIES)

(2013)
LABEL:

KSCOPE

GENRE:

PROGRESSIVE ROCK

TAGS:
80's, Experimental, Fusion, Groovy, Hovering, Jazzy, Melancholic, Old School, Opera-Rock, Psychedelic, Symphonic, Technical, Theatrical
"With The Raven That Refused To Sing (And Other Stories) Steven Wilson asserts his status as a major contemporary artist."
NUNO777 (01.02.2013)  
5/5
(0) opinions from our readers (0) comment(s)

Rarely has a work by Steven Wilson generated as much dissent within the editorial staff as "Grace For Drowning", a languid, boring or elitist work for some and a source of emotions touching the sublime for others. The fact that Wilson has put almost all of his ancillary projects, including his priority Porcupine Tree, on hold, is nevertheless indicative of the concern to focus exclusively on his solo work. Grace For Drowning's world tour revealed a Steven Wilson in constant jubilation, the true conductor of a masterful band performing emphatic and solemn music. The Raven That Refused To Sing (And Other Stories) was recorded in Los Angeles by Alan Parson with a majority of the musicians on Grace For Drowning's tour.

Between the two discs, there is a notable evolution with a less diluted and more technical content whose progressive essence is more diverse and less dreamlike. As in Grace For Drowning, the atmospheres are still very much influenced by a powerful jazz based on an incredible rhythmic density (the beginning of "Luminol") but also softer and psychedelic, carried by the duo Travis-Holzman (the central game of "The Holy Drinker"). The heavy and dark atmospheres are scattered here, often at the end of certain pieces, to put the finals in perspective in the form of an apotheosis.

The evolution also involves a progressive colouring marked 70's, mainly English, with thick keyboards (Mellotron and Hammond) and songs of a rare richness. The numerous vocal harmonies and master choirs give this record its intensity and relief. Whether they are modulated in an explosive chorus ("The Pin" or "The Holy Drinker") or accompanying the apogee of the songs ("The Watchmaker" or "The Raven That Refused To Sing") the warmth and beauty of these vocal melodies add a soul that Grace For Drowning could have missed.

The total success of this record is also to be credited to the talent and cohesion of the musicians Wilson had the intelligence to surround himself with. The incredible and versatile rhythm section (Marco Minneman and Nick Beggs) brings its power to the most energetic structures and its finesse to the most intimate passages. Adam Holzman and Theo Travis seize the great freedom offered to them to shine and adorn all the songs and the new recruit Guthrie Govan puts his touch at the service of emotion in fragile soli (his chorus while mastering feedback in the blackfieldian "Drive Home" is amazing). Finally, Steven Wilson has never sung so well and his performance on "The Raven That Refused To Sing", in perfect harmony with the lyrics, is heartbreaking with sensitivity and fragility.

The Raven That Refused To Sing (And Other Stories) is a flawless masterpiece that celebrates and synthesizes an already stunning career. In terms of coherence and diversity, sensitivity, instrumental quality and clarity of recording, Steven Wilson's third album reaches a peak that will be difficult to surpass. Each time you listen to this jewel, you will experience an intense, captivating and moving jubilation.


More informations on http://www.swhq.co.uk/





TRACK LISTING:
01. Luminol-12:10
02. Drive Home-07:37
03. The Holy Drinker-10:13
04. The Pin Drop-05:03
05. The Watchmaker-11:43
06. The Raven That Refused To Sing-07:47

LINEUP:
Adam Holzman: Claviers
Guthrie Govan: Guitares
Marco Minnemann: Batterie
Nick Beggs: Basse
Steven Wilson: Chant / Guitares / Basse / Claviers
Theo Travis: Sax, Flûte
   
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