Gavin Harrison on his big band love

Gavin Harrison has explained his love of big band music that inspired upcoming solo album Cheating The Polygraph.

Recorded over a five-year period, the project sees him reimagine eight Porcupine Tree tracks in a retro style. It’s launched on April 13 via KScope.

Harrison says in the video below: “When I hear 12 people playing a chord across 12 brass instruments, it’s so much more powerful than hearing that same chord on a piano. Every note has got its own life – there’s someone behind each note blowing it.”

He recalls an experience as a child that underlined his passion for the genre: “My dad was a trumpet player. He took me to the BBC where they had a big band. The drummer got a chair and put it right by his floor tom. I came over and sat there, aged eight, and it was just mind-blowing.”

And Harrison believes followers of his other work will enjoy his big band material too. He says: “I didn’t make this record to try to please or annoy Porcupine Tree fans – I just thought it was a good concept for a record. I think people are open-minded enough that they’ll at least give it a listen.”

Guest on Chasing The Polygraph include saxophonist Nigel Hitchcock and bassist Laurence Cottle from Bill Bruford’s Earthworks. The record is available for pre-order on CD/DVD and vinyl at Kscope. Harrison will tour the UK with King Crimson later this year.


  1. What Happens Now? 2. Sound Of Muzak (So Called Friend) 3. Start Of Something Beautiful 4. Heart Attack In A Lay-By (Creator had a Mastertape / Surfer) 5. Anaesthetize (The Pills I’m Taking) 6. Hatesong-Halo 7. Cheating The Polygraph (Mother & Child Divided) 8. Futile