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Various Artists (Tributes) - The Moon Revisited (Pink Floyd tribute) CD (album) cover


Various Artists (Tributes)


Various Genres

2.29 | 21 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars One of Magna Carta's earliest tribute albums designed to attract listeners to their practically unknown signed prog bands was The Moon Revisited, a tribute to Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon album from 1973. It basically contains a who's who in the Magna Carta lineup and the help of Rob LaVaque and his Pink Floyd tribute band ironically called Dark Side of the Moon (clearly a suitable name for this project).

The one thing that grabs my attention immediately is that this really is not a revisitation per se, nor is it an attempt to explore the album in a creative way. It's just a bunch of new people performing the album as accurately as they can. And they succeed at this, but one has to ask the question: Why? Why not just listen to the original if all you're going to do is perform it note for note? About the only possible interest might be what it would sound like using today's recording technology (back in 1995 of course). Even the vocals on much of this album are fairly close to the original album. You would think that that would be difficult to do, but that's just what they did. It's true you may not exactly come close to the vocal tones of Gilmour, Wright, and Waters, but the deliveries are identical.

Now let's look at this song by song so that we can be introduced to the Magna Carta lineup. Cairo starts everything off with Speak to Me and Breathe. Their rendition is note for note and sets the tone for the rest of the album. Cairo is best known as a symphonic prog band, most notable for their strong ELP influences courtesy of keyboardist Mark Robertson. It would clearly have been more interesting if Cairo had put an ELP spin to this song. At least that's what I was expecting. One good thing about this is that the production on this song is better than that on any of the Cairo albums to date.

Rob LaVaque performs On the Run flawlessly. It sounds like the original, but digitally recorded. Even the sound effects sound like they were ripped right off the original album. The performance is accurately done and this is probably not a song that is easily reproducible, so I'll give him that much credit. Next, Shadow Gallery, a somewhat popular prog metal band that was just starting to make waves when this tribute was released, performs their version of the famous song Time. It sounds very accurately done and because of this it doesn't really sound like Shadow Gallery (just like Cairo's version of Breathe didn't sound like Cairo). It's almost as if these bands just shut off their personalities and became Pink Floyd robots.

Next, Rob LaVaque's Pink Floyd tribute band, Dark Side of the Moon, does a faithful rendition of The Great Gig in the Sky. It features two female vocalists (Joan Burton and Terry Hand-Smith) who perform Clare Torry's famous vocal soars as accurately as can be expected. By now it's obvious that this should be the trend throughout the rest of this album.

Magellan performs Money next. I sort of suspected something that would have a bit of quirkiness to it. After all, Money is a somewhat quirky song and Magellan is (or was) a quirky band. I couldn't think of another song in the Pink Floyd catalogue that would suit this band than Money. Magellan at least tries to layer their special personality over this song and they succeed at this. It really sounds like Magellan performing Money, rather than Magellan warping into a Pink Floyd clone band like the other guests on this album did. Still, they try to be faithful to the original, so it isn't a complete departure from the intended purpose this album seems to have.

Next, Enchant performs Us and Them and we're back on track for another note-for-note rendition of a Pink Floyd classic. Of course it doesn't sound like Enchant, it sounds like another Pink Floyd clone band. World Trade (of Billy Sherwood fame) performs Any Colour You Like. Again another accurate note-for-note performance. The very least he could have done was give it a little Yes twist, but no, imaginations continue to be empty as we approach the end of this album.

The omnipresent Robert Berry performs Brain Damage and since we're just so used to the fact that nothing different is going to happen, the song passes by without a thought occurring in my little brain. Perhaps a better title for this album would have been Brain Damage Revisited, as the ideas are nearly entirely absent. The album concludes with Eclipse featuring all the vocalists from the previous songs. Another faithful rendition for the classic ending of this album. They even remember to put in the line about there not being any dark side of the moon at the very end.

Basically this project was one where somebody (Magna Carta, LaVaque, who knows?) said let's go to the bookstore and buy the score for the Dark Side of the Moon and invite people over to play each song. I can just sense the excitement they must have had. It's too bad no one had the idea of taking this classic album to another level or interpretation.

I guess I can't be completely negative about this album. The performances are true to the original and nicely done. That could be considered an achievement. But I will always have the thought of why anyone would want to do a note-for-note copycat rendition. I guess maybe they were fearful that their interpretation would have come off worst, but you never know if you don't try. The most likely excuse was probably money. This album probably sold better for Magna Carta than the original albums of the bands that performed on here. The Pink Floyd name sells, even when it isn't Pink Floyd performing.

If you like accurate note-for-note tribute albums or are a die-hard Pink Floyd fan, you may very well enjoy this. If you're looking for something original or a new interpretation of Pink Floyd music, you won't find it here. Best for you to avoid. Because I thought the performance was good, I'm going to give this three stars. Good, but this will never be essential. Buy the original if you want an original masterpiece.

progaeopteryx | 3/5 |


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