Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Portishead - Third


Now that I’ve listened to the album extensively (i.e. endlessly!!), I wanted to share some brief thoughts.

Looking at the album like I would a great filmmaker/artist who has returned after a 10+ year absence, the first thing that strikes me is the way this album opens and closes. The very opening track begins with the voice of a foreign language, as if to signify either the arrival of a mysterious forgotten band, or perhaps the exotic and experimental sound they have changed into over 10 years. It is certainly (and fittingly) a much different and experimental sound for this band, who transform scratching turntables into a guitar-heavy album.

The beauty lies in its pure originality and refreshingly distinct sound that is essential Portishead. This album demands to be heard as a whole, and to be listened to several times to fully appreciate its originality. I may not be an expert on music, but I can safely say that few bands today have such a distinct original sound as Portishead, and this is again evident with Third, where they prove they can change with the times, and still remain unique from anything else.

The album ends with two brilliantly connected tracks, with the final song (Threads) closing with an alarming sound that seems to be signaling the return of an unforgettable band… one that is for my money, the greatest band of all-time!!!