Porcupine Tree

Genre: Progressive rock, Alternative rock, Progressive metal, Psychedelic rock.

Band Members: Steven Wilson (vocals and lead guitar)

                                Richard Barbieri (keyboards)

                                Colin Edwin (bass guitar)

                                Gavin Harrison (drums)

Studio albums:

  • On the Sunday of Life… (1991)
  • Up the Downstair (1993)
  • The Sky Moves Sideways (1995)
  • Signify (1996)
  • Stupid Dream (1999)
  • Lightbulb Sun (2000)
  • In Absentia (2002)
  • Deadwing (2005)
  • Fear of a Blank Planet (2007)
  • The Incident (2009)

The English rock band was formed by Steven Wilson in 1987. Porcupine Tree has always been pigeonholed with the modern progressive movement, but the reality is that they’re both a riff-addicted metal band and a troupe obsessed with rich harmonies and memorable refrains.

In their earlier albums such as The Sky Moves Sideways, the band explores Pink Floyd-ian space rock on songs like the epic title track, which clocks in at about 35 minutes in its 2 separate parts (Phase 1 and Phase 2). In their latter albums like Fear Of A Blank Planet, the group favors a harder approach, combining the sort of complex, intricately played hard rock that draws comparisons to bands like Rush, with bursts of bludgeoning metal guitar.

The band’s music has often been tagged as melancholic and sad, and to that Steven Wilson agrees. He says it’s  “easier to write songs about the negative side of the world than it is about the happy side of the world.”  Their music has always maintained a strong experimental quality, often fusing several genres in a single track. That is what makes it so breathtaking!

Here is a short list of my favourite Porcupine Tree songs:


1. Anesthetize

This song is DEFINITELY number 1 from Porcupine Tree for me.

“It’s all in me, all in you/Electricity from the pills in me

It’s all in me, all in you/Only MTV, cod philosophy”

If you’re looking for 18 minutes of pure psychedelic magic, you’ve found it.


2. Trains

“When the evening reaches here/You’re tying me up

I’m dying of love/It’s OK”

This song makes my hair stand on end every time I listen to it.


3. Arriving somewhere but not here

“Never stop the car on a drive in the dark/Never look for the truth in your mother’s eyes

Never trust the sound of rain upon a river/Rushing through your ears”

The lyrics as very deep and this song goes with literally all your moods!


4. Blackest Eyes

The chorus is very catchy and the blend of acoustic with thunderous guitar and drumming just puts this song on edge.

“I got wiring loose inside my head/I got books that I never ever read

I got secrets in my garden shed/I got a scar where all my urges bled

I got people underneath my bedI got a place where all my dreams are dead

Swim with me into your blackest eyes”

Brilliant !


5. Lazarus

“Follow me down to the valley below you know/Moonlight is bleeding from out of your soul”

The music is trippy and the lyrics are downright enchanting.


I could go on and on and the list will never end. Other songs like The Sound of Muzak, Fear of a Blank Planet,  Dark Matter, Open Car, Even Less and Hatesong are some of my other favourites.


So if you’re really depressed or really happy and you just want to get high on life, high on music.. Porcupine Tree is your answer. Just sit back and let the trippy music take you to another world!

Ipsita Kabiraj

Living life one book at a time :) Namasté.

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