When I last saw Brit Floyd in August, I said that I would gladly see them again. I did just that on Tuesday night at The State Theatre in New Brunswick NJ.
Over the last two years, the State Theatre took advantage of the downtime forced by the pandemic to completely refurbish the facilities. New carpet, new seats, new bar, new bathrooms…everything has been updated and it looks great. I would swear that the seats are even a bit wider than they were before. Parking is readily available in a public garage just a five minute walk from the venue, and there are tons of restaurants of every type in the immediate area. Continue reading →
TheGlacially Musical Pouredcast is a weekly Podcast that has three principles: Beer, Metal, and Swearing! Hosted by Nik Cameron – grown out of the Glacially Musical blog is all about great music and vinyl collecting. Once per week Ghost Cult’s Chief Ghost Cult Keefy joins Nik to discusses great bands and great era’s of bands. Nik and Keefy complain alot about missing Nick Mason on St. Louis.
Mick Rock a.k.a. ’The Man Who Shot The 70s’ who created some of the most iconic shots of bands in music history, has died. He was 73. The news was broken by his family on social media. No cause of the death has been announced. In addition to a stint as David Bowie’s personal photographer, the native of Great Britain show iconic rock music acts such as Queen, T. Rex, Syd Barrett, Lou Reed, Iggy Pop and The Stooges, The Sex Pistols, The Ramones, Joan Jett, Talking Heads, Roxy Music, Thin Lizzy, Geordie, Mötley Crüe, and Blondie. We send our sympathy out to his friends and family at this time. Read their statement about Mick’s passing and lifeswork below.
Brit Floyd is a Pink Floyd tribute band, but to call them such diminishes what they have really achieved. They formed in 2011, and have been performing the Pink Floyd catalogue ever since. The brainchild of now musical director Damian Darlington, it has evolved over the years to become a grand spectacle closely mirroring a Pink Floyd concert. Brit Floyd is more of a passion project honoring the music and performances of Pink Floyd than just a tribute.Continue reading →
We have interviewed Stavros Giannopoulos many times over the years in his career so far and we often talk of our mutual love of Pink Floyd. Particularly we both dig their weirder, instrumental work from earlier in their career as much as the hits. His band has even covered The Floyd several times. With this in mind, we put him on the spot and asked him if he could write a song with either Syd Barrett, David Gilmour or Roger Waters… whom would he choose?
“That is the hardest question I have ever heard! What a loaded question! I don’t think I could talk to Syd Barrett at all (laughs). I think I’m going to go with Roger Waters. I feel like he contributed a lot of awesome stuff to Pink Floyd, and he often gets painted the asshole! I definitely feel he wasn’t the person holding back the full-on Pink Floyd reunion, and that they never got back together all those years. I think that was David Gilmour. With present knowledge included and of course with Rick (Wright) passing away, they aren’t coming back. They can’t come back without him. So David Gilmour is probably an asshole, even though he rules! (laughs) You know I’ve seen Gilmour and I’ve seen Roger Waters solo live, and they both rule! So it’s kind of like when your parents get divorced and now you get two Christmases! David has played with Roger, and Nick Mason has played drums with Roger a few times too. So I’m going to go with Roger, especially if we are going back in the heyday, when we know for certain Roger wasn’t a complete cocksucker at the time.”
I have waited my entire writing career, and maybe my entire life to review a Pink Floyd album.
I just wish it wasn’t The Endless River (Parlophone/Columbia).
Anyone who knows me personally or via music journalism knows “The Floyd” has been a huge part of my life, certainly as much as any metal band, and encoded to my musical DNA since I was a small child. While some people have personal relationships with deities, I have them with music and bands. Their music has meant an enormous amount to me, helped colour my worldview at a young age, and even my own attempts at musical endeavors for twenty-five plus years in one form, or another.
With the passing of Rick Wright in 2008 and David Gilmour’s reluctance to use the moniker any longer, fans have long been resigned to the fact the band was long gone. The tracks that would become this album came from a series of sessions that didn’t make it on to The Division Bell (EMI) in 1993 and from a side project called “The Big Spliff” (lol), both including a ton of Wright penned and recorded pieces for make a four sides of a record. Considering the history of Wright’s ouster from the band by Roger Waters in 1980 following The Wall, the idea of sending out a final recording in tribute to Rick, is a nice touch. The Endless River, from the bands point of view, is a way to demarcate the finish line of their long, weird journey.
The problem with the album is that it is not fully realized musically at all. At this stage Gilmour, and his co-producers Youth, Phil Manzanera, and Andy Jackson (this thing needed four producers?) should know how to make a Pink Floyd album sound, right? However, what you get is even less than a collection of half-finished songs and more like a pastiche of Floydian tropes. The slide guitar from Meddle, the delay pedal from ‘Another Brick In The Wall Part I’, the Hammond B-3 swell from ‘Great Gig In The Sky’, the backing singers, a dusky saxophone, jazzy Nick Mason back-beats from Animals and Wish You Were Here, the dour analog synth sounds of ‘Welcome To The Machine’, the space-rock “musiq concrete” of Dark Side of The Moon, the Stephen Hawking sample from The Division Bell; all carefully placed here as if someone made a “greatest hits” mixtape for you, just in case you forgot what they sounded like. Another bad mis-step is the awful ‘Louder Than Words’, the one song with full vocals on the album. This ‘Comfortably Numb’–lite track is feeble, but a well-meaning attempt to wax philosophical on life, death and the space in between. These were all topics better served lyrically by Syd Barrett’s insane whimsy and Waters’ wounded psyche rage-a-thons. This is the band that wrote ‘Bike’, ‘Childhood’s End’, ‘Echoes’, ‘Time’, ‘Eclipse’ and ‘Mother’ to name a few similar-themed tracks. By comparison, the baby boomer dribble of the hackneyed lyrics from Gilmour and wife Polly Sampson (please, just stop) wrecked it for me.
On the plus side, it’s great to hear Rick’s playing and writing one final time. Often imitated, instantly recognizable and shining brightly: he was the glue that held their music together. His peers from the 60s and 70s were concerned with virtuoso technique and speed, and making the keys sound as un-keyboard like as possible. Meanwhile good ol’ Rick knew well the balance between laying the foundation for moods, and driving the rhythm with just a few tasteful cadences and a deft touch. Along with Dave’s occasional simmering guitar solos and tasteful inflections, this helps overcome some of the tracks. Contributions from past collaborators like Bob Ezrin, Anthony Moore and Guy Pratt are all welcome. These are some of the reasons the album is not a total wash.
The Endless River is not wholly unenjoyable. Take it for what it is: an album of so-so out-takes, released in tribute to a fallen great, and the end of one the greatest bands ever with a messy thud.