My only minor gripe with this DVD is with the setlist. The best way to describe it is that this setlist is probably good enough to have those of you who are still unfamiliar with this band saying, "damn, these guys are an awesome band," but if I were to put together a best-of setlist for you, you just might have found yourself calling these guys the greatest band in the world!
Along with FOABP, they also performed three of the four songs from the Nil Recurring EP, which is essentially leftover songs from the FOABP sessions, as well as a couple of B-sides from the In Absentia and Deadwing sessions. I was disappointed that they left off key In Absentia tracks like "Blackest Eyes," "Trains," and "The Sound of Muzak" in favor of lesser tracks like "Wedding Nails," and "Strip The Soul/Dot Three," but I can certainly respect them for not wanting to repeat themselves.
All setlist gripes aside, Porcupine Tree have once again captured another mesmerizing concert performance on DVD. This one will be hard to knock off my best of 2010 list. Special thanks goes out to director/editor Lasse Hoile who refrained from interjecting his artistic vision all over this video like he did with the last one, which nearly ruined it for me. Here he simply lets the performance do the talking, and saves the special effects crap for his song videos - which is where it belongs. His knowledge of the band's music also made for some perfectly timed camera cuts to capture those essential guitar licks, keyboard riffs, and drum fills the moment they occur. I could have used less frequent camera cuts and more longer shots of the entire stage to better capture how the video screens and moody stage lighting really added to the performance.
Gavin Harrison may be the best drummer on the planet right now, and Hoile positions cameras at every vantage point around his kit. If you are a Harrison fan, or a fan of great drumming in general, you'll be drooling over some of the shots you get to witness here. This DVD cries out for one of those "drum-cam only" options to let you focus just on him when you want.
Unsung hero, John Wesley, lends his amazing guitar and vocal skills to the band once again, and I am mystified as to why he is still given the Daryl Stuermer (Genesis) treatment, and has not been given full band member status yet. I could not imaging seeing Porcupine Tree without him. Treat this guy right Steve!