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Pink Floyd - The Endless River CD (album) cover

THE ENDLESS RIVER

Pink Floyd

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.36 | 644 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Neu!mann
Prog Reviewer
4 stars After hearing recent albums by the surviving original giants of Progressive Rock (Yes, King Crimson, post-Tull Ian Anderson), it's not hard to become discouraged by the geriatric lack of passion in their twilight efforts. Thankfully the same can't be said for this posthumous elegy from the late Pink Floyd. If you have to revisit the past, this is how to do it: with valedictory grace, and hardly any nostalgia despite the obvious deference to a long musical legacy.

The album was assembled around hours of leftover scraps and fragments from the 1994 "Division Bell" sessions, all held together with synthetic glue supplied by the late Richard Wright. But it doesn't sound at all artificial or anachronistic, thanks to the sensitive, affectionate editing of the scattered parts into a more cohesive sum. There's even a casual, half-realized concept behind it: the all-too human need for real communication, something not always apparent in the band's own troubled history.

It's actually more subtext than theme, expressed through the individual track titles ("Things Left Unsaid", "The Lost Art of Communication"), and of course in the bittersweet beauty of the music itself, mostly organized into atmospheric, ambient soundscapes, with occasional mid-tempo rock interludes in classic Floyd vernacular. Except for the curtain-closer "Louder Than Words", the album is entirely instrumental: a rare thing for this group, and entirely appropriate to the unspoken focus.

Roger Waters of course wasn't involved in the project, beyond a predictably testy comment on his Facebook page. I wouldn't be surprised if he considered it a purely mercenary exploitation of a dead comrade's memory, and maybe he has a point. But Pink Floyd has always drawn inspiration from its ghosts, beginning with Syd and now including Richard.

It will never be remembered as the long-lost Floyd album that never was. But as a belated postscript it adds a welcome coda on the otherwise unresolved non-ending to a turbulent musical career. Three-plus stars, rounded up for closing the door gently on the way out.

Neu!mann | 4/5 |

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