2 x LP   Standard   33⅓rpm   

2017 EU repressing on standard 2xLP= It's been ten long years since PNYC and the wait is over! 'Third' is the 2008 album from Portishead. They are a trip-hop group from Bristol, England, named after the nearby town of the same name.

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Release date:19-01-2017(originally released in 2008)

2017 EU repressing on standard 2xLP=  It's been ten long years since PNYC and the wait is over! 'Third' is the 2008 album from Portishead. They are a trip-hop group from Bristol, England, named after the nearby town of the same name. 

A1. Silence
A2. Hunter
A3. Nylon Smile

B1. The Rip
B2. Plastic
B3. We Carry On

C1. Deep Water
C2. Machine Gun
C3. Small

D1. Magic Doors
D2. Threads

Portishead's Third has been a long time coming, the result of a lengthy creative torpor following 1997's dark, distinctly underrated album Portishead. Importantly, though, they've shaken it. While the core trio of Beth Gibbons, Geoff Barrow, and Adrian Utley remains, this is quite a different band to Portishead's 90s incarnation: gone is the slo-mo turntable scratching and smoky jazz feel, replaced by heavy, brooding rhythms, vintage-sounding electronics, and spindly guitar. Still present, though, is that sense of emotional fracture and deep gloom. "Silence" opens with a dense drum loop which suddenly falls away to reveal Gibbons' voice, cold but magnificent: "Wounded and afraid, inside my head/Falling through changes". "Nylon Smile", meanwhile, is a fine example of Third's occasional folksy edge, an acoustic song reminiscent of Leonard Cohen that, around its midpoint, lifts off on a propulsive electronic rhythm, Gibbons holding one clear, hard note as synthesisers bubble beneath. At times, it's a harsh and foreboding listen: the electronic drums of "Machine Gun" might put off the listener hoping for smooth dinner party fare. But Third is a brave and forward-thinking return, and one great enough to justify its lengthy gestation. --Louis Pattison


Portishead are a band from Bristol England named after the nearby town of the same name 12 miles 19 km west of Bristol The band was formed in Bristol UK in 1991 by Geoff Barrow Beth Gibbons and Adrian Utley After releasing a short film To Kill a Dead Man and its accompanying music Portishead signed a record deal with Go Beat Records

We really wanted to sound like ourselves but not sound like ourselves It was always going to be difficult Geoff Barrow Pitchfork Media interview Apr 7 2008

Portisheads eponymous second album sounded like theyd spent the years since their debut listening to their own music and as such was an often chilling and minimalistic exercise in distillation and refinement By the same token it also made any further venture in their distinctive style artistically redundant

As a result Third is necessarily a different animal The sound is at once broader and more claustrophobic Gone is the scratching and heavy sampling but still with us thankfully is the distinctive and imaginitive percussion work Dark grooves are rendered uncomfortable listening with the addition of high sustained synth tones Gibbonss vocals are as ever full of shame doubt and regret at things shes done or not done but occasionally a little more upbeat and direct The album in general is uneasy listening often beautiful often noisy often obtusely changing direction at midpoint or ending suddenly Silence for example cleverly clips out just as its proggish coda starts to get selfindulgent

There is even comedy here too Yet the ukuleleled yes really Deep Water is possibly the most disturbing song on the album hearing Gibbons sing about not being afraid makes one wonder who shes trying to convince and she comes across as tragically deluded The song works as a palateclearer too the deliciously torturous drumming of Machine Gun is all the more punishing for following such whimsy and its despondent Morriconeesque synth coda is a welcome surprise Threads is a perfect ender with that enormous plaintive bass pulse radiating across the landscape like the cry of some wounded Lovecraftian leviathan

How tempting it would be to set up a lounge ensemble a Rhodes piano two turntables and a heap of percussion stand Beth Gibbons up in front of them and have her wail torch songs until her heart bled How brave it is then that Third is so unlike that concept that it isnt even the opposite of it its some kind of unfathomable fourthdimensional tangent A Bannister

Discs: 2
Drager(LP,EP,12,7,CD): LP
Qual(120grs,150grs,180grs): Standard
Speed(33,45): 33
Originally released: 2008
This release: 2017
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