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Incredible Expanding Mindfuck

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Incredible Expanding Mindfuck, also known as I.E.M., was a musical project by Steven Wilson (the leader of British rock band Porcupine Tree). Its work is mainly influenced by Krautrock and experimental music from the 1960s and 1970s. I.E.M. is more experimental than Wilson’s more well-known bands, and is almost entirely instrumental.

I.E.M. is seldom discussed in any depth by Wilson in interviews and the album packaging provides very little information. The name “Incredible Expanding Mindfuck” is an in-joke referring to early Porcupine Tree promotional material (in which Porcupine Tree was given an entirely fictional 1970s history and in which the Incredible Expanding Mindfuck was mentioned as a related project).

Wilson’s work with I.E.M. is in part a continuation of the experimental psychedelic sound which he initially mastered with Porcupine Tree before steering the band towards a more mainstream rock direction with the Stupid Dream album. He has also cited “the cosmic jazz of artists like Sun Ra” as an influence on the music.

I.E.M.’s work is more experimental in nature than that of Porcupine Tree, and is almost entirely instrumental. Almost all instruments on I.E.M. recordings are played by Wilson (although other contributors have included former Bark Psychosis drummer Mark Simnett).

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