Released in 2013, “Drive Home” was written by Steven Wilson as a solo work. It was issued on a DVD (with videos) and CD of the same name.
Wilson is best-known for his band Porcupine Tree, and is one of the most prolific musicians around. He works on various projects, including producing, remixing, and remastering recordings for others as well as creating his own works.
“Drive Home” is an emotional track that ends with a monumental and evocative guitar solo by Guthrie Govan.
According to Wilson, Govan played the solo on the first take while using a guitar Wilson had just received from the shop. When Govan picked it up and started playing, the E string “slipped out of the saddle,” so that Govan couldn’t play it. He completed the solo nonetheless, and it has become one much admired by music fans around the world.
The video is heart-wrenching, telling a story I won’t ruin. It comes together from shards and shreds of emotions and memory surrounding a necklace. The animation is fantastic.
Wilson said the song has a “‘Comfortably Numb’ trajectory” to it, but it’s less intense and more delicate than that Pink Floyd classic.
Unsurprisingly, the recording and mixing of the song is fantastic, as Wilson is a stickler for sound quality in his works — something that is too often lacking with modern music, where compression and compensations have become too common. The natural woodwinds and instrumentation add resonance.
The song ends with an unresolved chord progression, leaving the story unfinished, which suggests the protagonist can move on.
Music can tell stories that hit our emotions in ways other forms of art can only approach.