Porcupine Tree truly sprang to prominence with their 2002 album, In Absentia. It was their seventh album and marked the start of their international stature as a heavy prog rock band. Up to that time, Porky Tree had been a space rock band.
Their third album, The Sky Moves Sideways (1995), is my favourite from their early period. This was the album that contributed the most to their unofficial title of “The Pink Floyd of the Nineties”. It didn’t win Porky Tree many fans in the metal community — space rock is usually too soft and proggy for that.
In 1995 there were only three permanent members of the band — the colossally talented Steven Wilson doing vocals and guitars, Richard Barbieri on keyboards and Colin Edward on bass. Drummer Chris Maitland had toured with the band and contributed to studio recordings, including three tracks on The Sky Moves Sideways. He became a regular member in 1996.