Steven Wilson
The Raven That Refused to Sing


4.0
excellent

Review

by Vrid USER (12 Reviews)
February 24th, 2013 | 18 replies


Release Date: 02/25/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Have it, pop music!

Ah, the fine art of inventive poetry. A progressive musician should never be synonymous with creative drought and Steven Wilson is, as always, boiling with impatience. Not long after having dwelt into the mind’s eye of the most ambitious record of 2011, closely followed by an odd collaboration with Mikael Åkerfeldt (Opeth) there was already plans to set sail for yet another horizon. I sincerely hope people are aware of how delightful living in 2013 is from the perspective of a curious listener. Experimentation is encouraged, not only by a critical audience that frowns upon tasteless clichés. An artist has lots to live up to. Plagiarism, even if by an unconscious act is a deadly sin in a world where scenes have already bloomed. We’re doing quite a good job so far, thank him for that.

Produced under the watch of none other than Alan Parson, The Raven That Refused To Sing is the third installment in Steven Wilson’s solo catalogue. So what would one expect to hear from a man who promotes innovation, creative thinking and curiosity? Well, pretty much just that. Its novelties are frequent and many in number; you get mostly anything you could ever ask in favor of progressive rock that truly progresses. And though bloated with diligent King Crimson worship (Lizard, specifically) it’s undeniably Steven Wilson, still probing and still dripping with talent. Featuring an elite ensemble of skilled musicians and everything from adventurous mellotrons to soaring saxophones and woodwind instruments, this is not the kind of music you absorb in a single sit. Better make yourself comfortable.

Regrettably, it’s not quite as refined as the precious Grace For Drowning. Writing progressive music is following a wildcat scheme and the particularly diverse façade of Crimson’s back catalogue has indeed encouraged Wilson to strive for audial variety. This is a model that the predecessor clearly embraced, and to a full extent. Whereas Grace For Drowning showcased a unique sense of unity between genres not limited to progressive rock, this one settles on a slightly meeker tone and never quite tries to be as bold as its sibling. Gone are the electronic elements, the industrial singer/songwriter touch and the engaging effort to marry odd genres. The result is a slight lack of depth and character, but only truly in contrast to a masterpiece. Criticism aside, this is just as lush and splendorous as any type of top notch music. Guthrie Govan in particular shines with fantastic guitar solos and the vocal work is on par with anything Wilson ever sung on.

In the No-Man’s land of Porcupine Trees, Storm Corrosions, Bass Communions and Blackfields - quality is of central value. Their languages speak with strident tongue; the creative principle is no mere flash in the pan and a thesis that has yet to be compromised for Steven Wilson. Akin to music from a time out of mind in unity with brick-wall imagination – The Raven That Refused To Sing is a thrilling venture. Any devotee of experimental music will find something worth staying for here. It’s however not a revival of intellectual or artistic achievement and vigor… oh, sublime wit. It’s the curious outcome of an inspired mind! No words necessary, everybody knows that Steven Wilson has high standards. Have it, pop music!



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user ratings (744)
Chart.
4.1
excellent
other reviews of this album
1 of
  • KerfuffleinaHussle (2.5)
    Steven Wilson takes a stab at nostalgia, but The Raven That Refused to Sing ends up soundi...

    Mike C (4)
    All preconceived notions aside, The Raven That Refused To Sing is a complex and enthrallin...

    TheCriticalListener (4)
    Steven Wilson's third solo album is a sonic feast and a musical journey worth taking, not ...

    puertasmagicas (4)
    In short, Steven Wilson’s “jazz” album, where he lays back the producer and composer...

  • BrianE (4.5)
    The dark wings of the raven deliver Wilson's finest solo album...

    Hernan M. Campbell STAFF (4.2)
    How much do you like '70s prog?...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Vrid
February 24th 2013


116 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I have no idea what's going on with the site, I submitted the review as a review for his latest...
what should I do? Oh well, it’s the 25:th in Sweden. I might not be able to top mr Campbell but I’m
giving this a shot, it’s been too long since my last review and I need to brush up my writing skills!

MeatSalad
February 24th 2013


15068 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

You can delete it and resubmit it after, or just ask the mods to change it for you in the meds thread.

Digging: Hey Rosetta! - Into Your Lungs (And Around in Your Heart and on

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
February 24th 2013


4458 Comments

Album Rating: 4.2

Save this review. And then once you've done that, comment back here and I'll take it to the mods to delete it.

Also, you can't upload this review yet because it isn't officially streaming yet. Or you have to wait until the 25th or 26th for the release date, if they never decide to stream it.

Vrid
February 24th 2013


116 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Saved. One question though, it's the 25:th in Sweden, does that mean I'm allowed to submit it?

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
February 24th 2013


4458 Comments

Album Rating: 4.2

Yeah, if it's officially released there. It's good review from what I read, so just wait until it comes out. Cheers.

Vrid
February 24th 2013


116 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great, thank you.

GiaNXGX
February 24th 2013


4867 Comments


Good review. Haven't listened yet but Grace for Drowning was good, hope it lives up to its
predecessor.

Vrid
February 24th 2013


116 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

There we go, thank you mods.

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
February 24th 2013


4458 Comments

Album Rating: 4.2

I forgot what date it was for a while, I just realized this comes out tomorrow, so I apologize for my first comment.

Anyway, really good review, man. We've talked a few times, so I know you're a big a prog fan and I'm glad you enjoyed this.

Vrid
February 24th 2013


116 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

No problem at all! And thank you once again to both of you.

Tyrael
February 24th 2013


20971 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Oh man this album is badass

Steven Wilson can do no wrong

what a hero

Makku
February 25th 2013


36 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

One of his best efforts till date

Dimor
February 25th 2013


1835 Comments


Rating is correct

OneMoreRoland
February 25th 2013


1053 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I really like your writing...

Gwyn.
February 25th 2013


15321 Comments


I have enjoyed exactly 3 songs that this guy has done

So nope, won't be listening to this one

But good review, nonetheless

Vrid
February 26th 2013


116 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thank you. Steven Wilson albums are growers for me, ,aybe give it another go? And then again? And again?

altforazninva5in
March 3rd 2013


263 Comments


Haha this review is really good.

Have a well-earned pos

MeatSalad
March 4th 2013


15068 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

agreed this guy is way better when he is appropriating King Crimson albums than when he is making his soulless and embarrassingly impotent PT albums


Agreed hard



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