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Pink Floyd - A Momentary Lapse of Reason CD (album) cover


Pink Floyd


Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.07 | 1731 ratings

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3 stars A Momentary Lapse of Reason initially started out as David Gilmour's third solo album with recording starting in October 1986. Gilmour initially thought the material was too weak to make it a Pink Floyd project. However, by the end of 1986 he felt confident in placing it under the Pink Floyd name. Of course prior to this Gilmour, Mason, and Waters had a dispute over the band's name which eventually became settled out of court with Waters gaining exclusive rights to nearly all of The Wall album and the entire Final Cut album along with some Floydian imagery including the original "flying pig."

Gilmour attempted to make A Momentary Lapse of Reason a Pink Floyd album by adding sound effects and lacing the album with synthesizer vocal effects, among other things. Although Nick Mason was a full member, his contributions were minimal as Gilmour relied mostly on a large team of session musicians including bassist Tony Levin, keyboardist Jon Carin (who would later tour with the band), Bob Ezrin, Carmine Appice, a variety of saxophone players (including John Helliwell of Supertramp), among others. Even Richard Wright would rejoin the band, though in the role of a salaried session musician.

Gilmour's new version of Pink Floyd was an entirely new creation. Sure, you have his amazing guitar work, which for the most part is the showcase behind the band's instrumentation from this point forward. But this is a Pink Floyd brought into the 1980s and along with it all those things we loved (i.e. hated) about the 1980s. This included programmed drums and a heap of digital synthesizers. Now that doesn't mean Pink Floyd went the route of Yes or Genesis. In fact, the new 1980s version of Pink Floyd was actually quite tastefully done considering the time period. After all, 1987 saw the likes of Invisible Touch, Big Generator, and Crest of a Knave. A Momentary Lapse of Reason, though not anywhere on par with their 1970s albums, was miles above the rubbish from other prog groups of the time.

Many of the songs are of a radio-friendly nature, most of them quite simple and uncomplicated. The most notable feel one can pick out of this album are the lush, and sometimes dark atmospherics created by the digital synthesizers. Maybe overused, but effective nonetheless. A couple of the songs have a driving energy (often lacking from Waters material), such as The Dogs of War, One Slip, and the concert favorite Sorrow. Another major difference is Gilmour's lyrical style. Instead of the lengthy political diatribes of Waters, we are left with some very poetical pieces. I think of that as an improvement.

Pink Floyd will never be the same without Waters, but Waters became so dominant that it was no longer Pink Floyd. A Momentary Lapse of Reason is a departure, but I find it to be a refreshing one. Unfortunately, it doesn't fare well compared to the group's earlier masterpieces. So I'm left with concluding this to be a three star effort. Good, but not essential.

progaardvark | 3/5 |


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