UK neo-prog band The Pineapple Thief are releasing “It Leads to This” on the K-Scope label. As on recent releases, the offerings include vinyl and cd editions, and of most interest to hi-res enthusiast the Blu-ray editions that include a Dolby Atmos and 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio surround mix audio of both “It Leads to This” and the bonus album “Y Aqui Estamos.”
“We worked on these new songs for nearly three years,” says frontman Bruce Soord. “It was the most intense time I can remember within The Pineapple Thief. Personally, I was being pushed well beyond my known limits, which is great from an artistic perspective but also very very challenging from a personal perspective.”
In a conceptual sense, the album mirrors the introspective exploration of band leader Bruce Soord, navigating self-discovery amidst a backdrop of global uncertainty. Despite spanning approximately 41 minutes, with the longest track just under six minutes, the album and its songs maintain a judicious brevity. Eschewing overblown epics, the focus is on melody and atmosphere, enriched by drummer Gavin Harrison's signature style, exuding a deceptive ease. The compositions weave in thick riffs, harmoniously balanced with moments of tranquility reminiscent of "Your Wilderness."
While the album avoids the trappings of other genre counterparts, tracks like "The Frost" infuse a pop sensibility with angular riffs, evoking a grungy vibe. The opening track, "Put it Right," sets a mellow tone, embracing fragility. "Rubicon" stands out with its heavier and quirky elements, seamlessly transitioning between groove-laden choruses and eccentric verses.
The title track maintains a barren atmosphere in the verses, blossoming during the chorus, showcasing Soord's adept handling of dynamic shifts. "All That’s Left" adheres to a similar structure but distinguishes itself with a standout middle section where Harrison's prowess takes center stage. "Now It’s Yours" follows suit, maintaining consistency while delivering captivating riffs and solos toward the song's climax.
"Every Trace of Us" exemplifies the band's distinctive sound and serves as a fitting representation of The Pineapple Thief's musical identity. The album concludes with "To Forget," a partially acoustic track that serves as a serene and certainly not an epic closure.
Some may find fault with the album's restraint, lacking epic compositions or extravagant prog elements. However, "It Leads to This" is a study in dynamics, strategically deploying brief heavier sections to amplify their impact. The strength lies in the solidity of the songs, with a deliberate focus on musical integrity over flamboyant arrangements. While some might wish for an extra song or two, The Pineapple Thief's commitment to their sound and niche shines through in "It Leads to This."
Release Date:9 February 2024.
Stand alone region-free Blu-ray edition with Dolby Atmos, 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio surround and hi-res Stereo mixes of both "It Leads to This" and the bonus album "Y Aqui Estamos." Also available in a A Deluxe 2CD / Blu-Ray / DVD edition with 52-page book featuring the same audio content. Plus vinyl, CD, and download editions, Available on popular streaming services.
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About the Author
Wesley is a lifelong music enthusiast. He started his career in the recording industry in New York City as an audio engineer, producer, and studio manager. Subsequently he toured across America as a guitarist with the short-lived band Land's Crossing. After many years in the technology sector and amassing a substantial vinyl and CD collection, he delved into immersive audio and created Hi-Res Edition to share with other listeners about the sound quality and discrete mixes available on many formats. He recently upgraded his system to 5.1.4 Dolby Atmos and continues to seek out and share about the best sounding releases.