Pink Floyd – The Endless River

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The Endless River – Pink Floyd

 

The Endless River is a very difficult project to pin down. This “final album” from Pink Floyd was made by compiling over 20 hours of unused sessions from the development of their 1994 record, The Division Bell. They’d toyed with the idea of releasing The Division Bell as a double album, one disc of traditional songs and one of ambient instrumentals, but the concept was shelved. Now, 20 years later, several years after the death of keyboardist Richard Wright, they’ve melded those sessions together along with other archived audio and some new takes to create what’s been branded as the band’s swan song. However, the success of The Endless River as an “album” is evasive.The record is largely instrumental and is divided into four distinct (though unlabeled) movements — each occupying an album side on the vinyl release. Of the 18 tracks, only the final song has lyrics. The music is beautiful and distinctly Floydian, but it’s also extremely derivative of many tracks from The Division Bell, as well as earlier Pink Floyd songs. These tracks aren’t just familiar, but contain presumably intentional and very noticeable echoes. For these reasons, The Endless River is a hard sell as a “new album”; instead, it could be called the world’s most lavishly appointed collection of outtakes.As a whole, The Endless River is a very evocative collection of music. Though it aligns itself with the smoother side of Pink Floyd rather than the ferocious snarl of “One of These Days” or anything from Animals, its moods explore a diverse and exciting terrain. But, as part of the greater whole of Floyd records, it’s an oddity, more relevant for its context in the band’s history than the music. The prevalence of cues from Division Bell suggests that The Endless River is made up of improvised work that developed into the previous record’s songs. The nods to earlier records like Meddle and A Saucerful of Secrets could be explained as the band dabbling in older tracks with an inevitable tour on the horizon. Deleted lines from Stephen Hawking’s “Keep Talking” monologue only serve to hammer home that you’re listening to Division Bell‘s cutting room floor.This is an undeniably fantastic presentation for this previously unreleased music: Making it a standalone release rather than a bonus disc for The Division Bell Deluxe Box was the right call. But, as a final offering from one of the greatest rock acts in history, The Endless River serves as a fair basis for the question of what exactly constitutes an “album.”

The simple answer is intent. When Gilmour and Mason went about putting this work together, it was done as a conscious final statement from the players who devised the core sound of Pink Floyd. It’s also to some degree a love letter to their dearly departed friend, whose work was largely underplayed for most of the band’s later records.

Roger Waters’ songwriting and creative direction were essential to Pink Floyd’s identity during the height of their career, but the sound of Pink Floyd was never his alone. Just as Tony Banks and Mike Rutherford are Genesis regardless of who’s fronting the band, or just as David Byrne doesn’t sound exactly like Talking Heads without Weymouth, Frantz, and Harrison, the memorable and defining music of Pink Floyd was always chiefly in the hands of Gilmour, Wright, and Mason. The Endless River sees the band doing what they’ve always done best: making jazzy and contemplative rock music.

It’s an odd thing for this album to come 20 years after most of it was recorded, but that doesn’t seem to be of much consequence to Gilmour and Mason. In recent interviews, the band’s two remaining members speak of the project as if, for the first time in a long time, some tremendous weight has been lifted. In fact, the intent of The Endless River is made plain with their closing manifesto, “Louder Than Words”. The lyrics are without a doubt some of the weakest ever to find their way onto a Pink Floyd album. However, the statement of “Louder Than Words” is a poignant one — about friendship, ego, songwriting, and perhaps even public perception as to “which one’s Pink?”

The redemption of this recycled music is in the hands of the fans. For everyone who looks at post-Waters Floyd as glorified Gilmour solo albums, these instrumentals could be what you’ve been waiting for since 1983. For fans of Division Bell, it’s at the very least a killer bonus disc. In the tapestry of Pink Floyd, The Endless River doesn’t end on as powerful a musical statement as Division Bell‘s “High Hopes”, but it does end on a profoundly more personal note for a band that’s taken us on 50 years of incredible sonic journeys.

Essential Tracks: “Allons-Y (1)”, “Autumn ’68”, and “Eyes to Pearls”

Pink Floyd: “The Endless River Will Be Our Final Album”

David Gilmour on Pink Floyd: ‘It’s a Shame, but This Is the End’

 

Pink Floyd David Gilmour and Nick Mason

Pink Floyd David Gilmour and Nick Mason

 

October 10, 2014

PINK FLOYD WILL RELEASE ALBUM The Endless River next month – and then that will be it for the band as far as new records go.

Speaking to BBC Radio, David Gilmour stated that the group have no plans to record together again following the death in 2008 of keyboard player Rick Wright, who appears posthumously on the LP.

“Well, Rick is gone. This is the last thing that’ll be out from us,” he declared. “I’m pretty certain there will not be any follow-up to this.”

The guitarist confirmed that The Endless River, released on November 7, is something of a tribute to his late bandmate, explaining that he felt Wright’s contribution to the band has been generally undervalued.

“He has been underestimated by the public, by the media and by us at times I hate to say,” he admitted. “I didn’t necessarily always give him his proper due. People have very different attitudes to the way they work and we can become very judgemental and think someone is not quite pulling his weight enough, without realising that theirs is a different weight to pull.”

 

“Rick has been underestimated by the public, by the media and by us at times I hate to say.”

David Gilmour

Drummer Nick Mason agreed, suggesting that in terms of the Pink Floyd legacy both he and Wright had remained in the shadows.

“I think the tendency is that the most attention is payed to the songs or the guitar part or whatever, and sad old drummers and keyboard players get left behind,” he mused. “I think it’s been a great opportunity; it is a great opportunity to recognise, remember and maybe give some credit rather late on. He was very gentle, very quiet, which doesn’t help if you’re in a band looking to promote yourself.”

 

 

 

The song sounds very much like The Division Bells sessions that are the genesis of much of the music on this upcoming album, The Endless River. Gilmour’s guitar parts are stellar, although perhaps softer than the classic jagged tone of the ’70s records. Time has softened The Floyd a bit, but this is still a beautiful song. The autobiographical lyrics, referring to the power behind Pink Floyd’s music and infighting are excellent. Gilmour told the BBC, “I’m pretty certain there will not be any follow up to this. And Polly, my wife, thought that would be a very good lyrical idea to go out on. A way of describing the symbiosis that we have. Or had.”

The Endless River is due out on November 10th, 2014. Pre-order the album on Amazon.com or Pink Floyd’s official store.

Here are the different versions that will be available (click images for full details and to order at Amazon.com):

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Full details emerge of Pink Floyd’s new album, The Endless River

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With just a month to go until its release, we’re learning more details of Pink Floyd’s first new album in 20 years, The Endless River. The full album credits recently surfaced online (via Reddit), revealing a few interesting tidbits.

For one, theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking appears on the album track titled “Talkin’ Hawkin’”. Hawking’s electronic voice was previously featured on The Division Bell track “Keep Talking”, leading some fans to speculate that “Talkin’ Hawkin’” serves as that track’s sequel.

Other interesting takeaways: Richard Wright (who passed away in 2008) is listed as writer or co-writer for 12 tracks and David Gilmour sings lead vocals on “Louder Than Words” and backing vocals on three other tracks. In addition, UK-based electronic string quartet Escala is featured on “Louder Than Words”. Click here to see the full credits.

The Endless River arrives November 10th via Columbia Records. Below, listen to the latest audio preview of the album. The full tracklist follows.

 

 

 

The Endless River Tracklist:
01. Things Left Unsaid
02. It’s What We Do
03. Ebb And Flow
04. Sum
05. Skins
06. Unsung
07. Anisina
08. The Lost Art of Conversation
09. On Noodle Street
10. Night Light
11. Allons-y (1)
12. Autumn’68
13. Allons-y (2)
14. Talkin’ Hawkin’
15. Calling
16. Eyes To Pearls
17. Surfacing
18. Louder Than Words

Pink Floyd reveals details of new album, The Endless River

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The Endless River – Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd has revealed details of its upcoming album, The Endless River, which marks the band’s first new release in 20 years.

According to a new interview in Uncut (via SteveHoffman.TV), the album has a release date of November 10th. David Gilmour and Nick Mason began the recording process in November 2013 and spent 30 days overdubbing guitars and recording drums. Roxy Music guitarist and producer Phil Manzanera was also heavily involved in the creative process.

Update: Pink Floyd’s website has revealed the album’s artwork (above) and tracklist (below). Spanning 18 tracks, the album will be available on standard CD, double vinyl, and as a deluxe box set that includes 39-minutes of extra material. Pre-orders are now ongoing.

Of particular note is the inclusion of original organ recordings from Pink Floyd’s Richard Wright, taken from rehearsals dating back to June 1969.

The duo also clarified some of the ongoing rumors, namely that the material draws heavily from Gilmour’s unreleased experimental album, The Big Spliff. According to Uncut, the album is not at all based on The Big Spliff and incorporates only a few seconds from the original project. It also does not contain any material “The Soundscape”, the instrumental track originally released on the band’s 1995 Pulse Cassette.

Rather, The Endless River contains four different pieces on each side of the record, which focus on the “more atmospheric and digressive aspects of Pink Floyd and includes snippets of conversation.” One song, “Louder Than Words”, contains lyrics embracing the full history of the band. Gilmour sings: “We bitch and we fight // But this thing that we do // It’s louder than words // The sum of our parts // The beat of our hearts/ It’s louder than words.”

The Endless River Tracklist:
01. Things Left Unsaid
02. It’s What We Do
03. Ebb And Flow
04. Sum
05. Skins
06. Unsung
07. Anisina
08. The Lost Art of Conversation
09. On Noodle Street
10. Night Light
11. Allons-y (1)
12. Autumn’68
13. Allons-y (2)
14. Talkin’ Hawkin’
15. Calling
16. Eyes To Pearls
17. Surfacing
18. Louder Than Words

Pink Floyd: Empyrean rock pioneers, with Syd and without. Plus their 10 greatest albums.

Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd

 

Drummer Nick Mason once described Pink Floyd as “the last of the gifted amateurs”. To a generation that went pop with The Beatles, they’re archetypal muso pioneers who elevated rock into a refined late 20th century art form. Today, they’re more likely regarded as the mature listener’s Radiohead. There’s merit in all three perspectives.

But first impressions stick hard, and for some, Floyd remain the first and last of the great European psychedelic acts – house band at UFO in ’67, and the inspiration for numerous Krautrockers and space-rockers. And for a band that prided itself in anti-star anonymity, the original Floyd’s frontman Syd Barrett was a poster-boy for acid-rock and, later, a textbook freak-scene casualty. Barrett’s traumatic breakdown was both the breaking and the making of Pink Floyd, his subsequent alienated state the inspiration for so much of the band’s later and greatest works.

Barrett’s departure, after just one album, robbed the Floyd of its star and songwriter. With replacement Cambridge pal David Gilmour joining fellow Cantabrigian Roger Waters (bass), Rick Wright (keyboards) and Mason, the group won a reputation as a technologically advanced concert attraction, though it wasn’t until 1971’s Meddle that they hit on the sophisticated, melodic style that became their trademark.

1973′s The Dark Side Of The Moon captured this and the group’s abiding themes perfectly. It launched Pink Floyd into superstar territory, and that’s where they stayed, even seeing off punk rock with 1979’s antagonistic The Wall. By now, Waters was running the show, prompting tensions that saw the Floyd concentrate on solo projects after 1983’s The Final Cut. Regrouping as a trio without Waters for 1987′s The Delicate Sound Of Thunder and 1994’s The Division Bell, the classic quartet reunited for the Live 8 concert in 2005, though Wright’s death in 2008 means there’ll be no full scale repeat. Remember them this way.

Pink Floyd were an English rock band that achieved international acclaim with their progressive and psychedelic music.
  • Members: Roger Waters, David Gilmour, Syd Barrett, Richard Wright, Nick Mason, Bob Klose
  • Lead singers: Roger Waters (1965–1996), More
Origin: Cambridge, United Kingdom, London, United Kingdom,

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Pink Floyd Exhibition To Open In Milan

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Major international retrospective, Their Mortal Remains, will launch in September.

Flying pig included.

PINK FLOYD HAVE announced details of a major new exhibition entitled Their Mortal Remains, set to open in Milan on September 19.

Promising a multi-sensory experience that will encompass the band’s music and art, this retrospective has been created with the active involvement of David Gilmour, Nick Mason and Roger Waters and will be curated by Aubrey Powell – one half of Floyd’s design favourites Hipgnosis (Storm Thorgerson passed away in April 2013).

“If ever a band lent itself to a major retrospective exhibition it’s Pink Floyd,” says Powell. “For a curator, selecting what to include from such a treasure trove, is both a dream and a nightmare: however there were elements that just had to be included, for example a 20 metre-wide sculpture of The Wall, 5 metre high inflatables and of course a flying pig. We shall be aiming for state-of-the-art, visuals and sonic delivery, similar to the experience of attending a Pink Floyd concert, you never know what to expect next.”

Alongside the audio-visual journey from 1968′s The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn to the present day, 300 artefacts from the band’s archive will also be on display. All will be housed within the 2,500 square metres of Milan’s La Fabbrica Del Vapore. Stufish, the team behind many of Floyd’s gargantuan stage sets, have been leading the design of the exhibition.

Tickets for the four-week residency will cost 15€ and will go on sale on Thursday (February 27) via pinkfloydexhibition.com

Preview the event via the video below: