Normally when a band re-records their music, it’s a last ditch effort to salvage what’s left of their career. They paint it as how the current lineup interprets their classics. “Give it Back” by The Pineapple Thief is not that however. While it is a band re-recording older songs, it’s more about a reinterpretation of songs by a lineup that now features legendary drummer Gavin Harrison. They have referred to this as the songs being “re-wired.”
It’s an opportunity really newer fans that came on because of Harrison to get acquainted with a sampling of the band’s back catalog AND a chance for old time fans (like myself) to hear these songs with a fresh coat of paint. The performances are all absolutely stellar of course and Harrison knows when to attack a song and when to lay back a bit. The only question when it comes to any sort of “compilation” style album (or live album for that matter) is song selection. And of course there are plenty of songs I might have preferred but that’s not to take away from the songs chosen.
One of my favorite choices and interpretations is “Build a World.” It’s a great song so it lends itself well to whatever you might decide to do. But I like the intro where the band gives it the same arrangement as the bonus disc from “Versions of the Truth.” Eventually it kicks in and that dynamic just makes it more interesting to me. A classic like “Shoot First” has even more teeth than the original. It is interesting that 5 of the songs are from the same album, “All the Wars.” At that point, why not just re-record the rest? That said, the choices from it are great, including the song that gives this set its title, “Give it Back.” I really do wish they had done “We Subside” because I can hear Harrison attacking the end of that song and making it even more powerful.
“Give it Back” accomplishes the task of being an album all fans of The Pineapple Thief will enjoy while also making a great place to start for those who have never checked them out. It’s a great showcase for the songwriting talent of Bruce Soord who is on par with ANY modern prog artist (yes you, Steven). I hope the band decides on a sequel as well, assuming Harrison has time with Porcupine Tree returning to action. Time will tell. Until then, we can celebrate the history of a band that’s success is long overdue.
Release Date: 13 May 2022
1. Wretched Soul (Rewired)
2. Dead In The Water (Rewired)
3. Give It Back (Rewired)
4. Build A World (Rewired)
5. Start Your Descent (Rewired)
6. 137 (Rewired)
7. Shoot First (Rewired)
8. Boxing Day (Rewired)
9. Warm Seas (Rewired)
10. Someone Pull Me Out (Rewired)
11. Last Man Standing (Rewired)
12. Little Man (Rewired)