The Pineapple Thief
It Leads To This


3.3
great

Review

by Raul Stanciu STAFF
February 13th, 2024 | 14 replies


Release Date: 02/09/2024 | Tracklist

Review Summary: It leads to familiar grounds.

It’s been almost four years since we last heard from The Pineapple Thief, whose 2020 LP, Versions of the Truth felt less enticing after a solid run with current drummer, Gavin Harrison. A break was needed, as the band constantly pumped out full lengths over the past couple of decades. Unfortunately, this latest affair, It Leads to This continues in the same vein as its predecessor, without much improvement on the songs’ charms. It definitely isn’t as solid as Your Wilderness or Dissolution, but it does have its moments. Most of the highlights lie in that moody, alternative prog territory these guys do so well. Opener, “Put it Right” offers some Mezzanine vibes with its subdued melodies, where the drums and bass are joined by melancholic piano chords. Soord’s soothing croon does a compelling job over the smooth instrumental. Same goes for “To Forget”, a tune augmented by Gavin’s inventive drum patterns that create a tension always on the verge of bursting. At some point, the guitars flirt with a round of distortion, yet they play only a small part of the song’s gnarly segments.

Moving further, “Now It’s Yours” is perhaps the most interesting number here. It creates a darker, rather depressive setting during the first half, as synths and piano beautifully blend together, switching halfway to a heavy, riff-laden part. The layered vocals again sound lovely, adding to the initial, intimate atmosphere. Nevertheless, the main downside remains the thin tone of the guitars when trying to rock out. For the sharp leads it works fine, still, there is no real crunch to them. Therefore, they go from slightly cheesy metal presets to constipated chugs. “Rubicon” is one of the tracks that suffer from this issue. The band aimed for a more aggressive approach, but needed a meatier production and higher volume for the guitars in the mix to truly kick in. It's a shame, since the tune is nice overall. Also, on “Every Trace of Us” Soord goes for a powerful break, still it doesn’t achieve the intended punch. I understand they don’t want to go full Porcupine Tree, however, the sound is too clinical to have the desired impact. After a couple listens, it becomes obvious The Pineapple Thief remain stuck in a rut, delivering more or less the same record as before. Maybe going metal or full prog will yield better results in the future. Unfortunately, It Leads to This turned out only marginally better than the previous LP. They can do better, so a more drastic change of direction might be helpful next time.



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user ratings (39)
3.3
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
February 13th 2024


6202 Comments

Album Rating: 3.3

Not much to say about the record, most of it you've heard already.



Stream here - http://open.spotify.com/album/2Dv8t4eIELlC1oiuaQ5jVn?si=VcQhUT2-Rw6pWrK0uicwDg

Mad.
February 14th 2024


4916 Comments


The artwork for this looks disturbingly like AI! Shame these guys have been on a steady downward curve since All The Wars. Soord was always a terrible lyricist, and when the music stopped having much unique about it the band doesn't really have a whole lot to offer.

WalrusTusk
February 14th 2024


1823 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

These guys never fail to create prog rock that feels shockingly bland.

Mad.
February 14th 2024


4916 Comments


Have these guys even done anything "prog" in the last 15 years?

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
February 14th 2024


6202 Comments

Album Rating: 3.3

There was a longer track on each of the last three albums with Gavin. Probably those are the closest to prog. The artwork reminds me of some Depeche Mode Exciter era video stills lol.



Saw them live a couple of years ago at a festival, the guitars had the same issue. No thickness whatsoever, just thin layers of distortion that were really disappointing.

cageofman
February 15th 2024


255 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I must admit to finding the lack of crunch frustrating, especially in 'The Frost'

Something weird about their sound, and deliberate abstaining from a heavier feel.

Magnolia really captured the crunch i think they should still be going for.



Nevertheless for me this album is stronger than the Versions of the Truth and i actually do like this album. Rubicon, It Leads to This, The Frost, Now It's Yours and To Forget i do all like.



Cant help feel it could of been a bit harder hitting.

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
February 15th 2024


6202 Comments

Album Rating: 3.3

Agreed, Magnolia had a better sound overall on the more aggressive tracks. Actually I wish they went back to those types of tracks for a change.





smaugman
February 16th 2024


5456 Comments


true. this band is pretty boring. gavin harrison deserves better

grandbazaar
February 16th 2024


147 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

The last two albums are ok, but nothing to write home about. Back to their other albums.

Mad.
February 17th 2024


4916 Comments


"Saw them live a couple of years ago at a festival, the guitars had the same issue. No thickness whatsoever, just thin layers of distortion that were really disappointing."

That's a shame! One of the best bits on their records used to be the guitar tone, probably in the less softer stuff around the Tightly Wound/What Have We Sown era though. The guitar on the title track of What Have We Sown is just lovely

"true. this band is pretty boring. gavin harrison deserves better"

I think Gavin Harrison really doesn't fit with this band. He's an extremely technically impressive drummer, but his style is very cold and squeaky-clean, everything that he's played on for me feels very empty emotionally (doesn't help that the songs are getting increasingly generic). I think Keith Harrison was a really emotive drummer and used to be one of the best bits of the band. He's sorely missed

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
February 17th 2024


6202 Comments

Album Rating: 3.3

Maybe they reconfigured the tones since that era, but it was disappointing. No punch at all. It was weird seeing Bruce "rock out" and sound paper thin lol.

Mad.
February 18th 2024


4916 Comments


Yeah I think it happened as they started to go more alt-rock/heavier, but seems like that has become a crutch in the songwriting now

Saw someone on Lastfm describing them as Porcupine Tree meets Coldplay, definitely seems applicable for the last 4 or 5 albums lol

PistolPete
February 18th 2024


5303 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I'll honestly take this over the previous album. It's not perfect but the title track and The Frost are quite excellent even by their standards. Last album really struggled to do much for me. Even seeing the songs live they lack energy and impact.

Mad.
February 22nd 2024


4916 Comments


The more I see that AI album cover, the more offended I am by it lol, indefensible



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