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David Gilmour - Live in Gdańsk CD (album) cover


David Gilmour


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4.21 | 181 ratings

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4 stars As someone who has spent some 30 years working as a live sound engineer, especially is arena settings, I know that it's certain intangibles that make for a wonderful live show. The vibe of the artist, the metaphysical back and forth that can exist between the artist and audience, the performance and enthusiasm of those performing, the esprit the corps that exists between the band members and the overwhelming sense of occasion.

David Gilmour's Live At Gdansk has all of these qualities and that what's moves this group of solo Gilmour and Pink Floyd songs into the essential range. Ramping the audience up with Dark Side Of The Moon's "Breath", "Time" and "Breath (reprise)", a relaxed Rick Wright helps to nail the song with his almost unexpected co-lead vocals on "Time". Gilmour pulled out all the stops with a top notch and emotionally nostalgic group of backing musicians that included Wright and saxophonist Dick Parry as well as long time traveling sidemen Phil Manzanera (rhythm guitar), son-in-law Guy Pratt (Bass) and Jon Carin (Keyboards/lap steel). The only current Pink Floyd member missing was drummer Nick Mason whose place was excellently filled by Steve Di Stanislao. A wonderful Polish orchestra supplements many of the string parts of both the Floyd and Gilmour solo songs. Indeed, it's this orchestra that breaths so much life and emotion to these songs without ever conflicting or over powering the Gilmour touring band. The immediate benefit is raising the level of all songs from Gilmour's then current album On An Island. Particularly on the songs "On An Island", "The Blue", "A Pocketful Of Stones" and the cathodic "Where We Start". Gilmour and company then perform "Shine On", with electrifying input from Dick Parry, and the old Floyd Classics "Astronomy Domine", "Fat Old Sun" and the quintessential epic "Echoes" which again warms the heart of both the concert audience and home listeners with featured keyboard sections and vocals, again, by Rick Wright as Gilmour nails every single lead perfectly if not actually improving on them in comparison to their studio counterparts. The closing songs are performed so well that "Wish You Were Here" , "A Great Day For Freedom" and "Comfortably Numb" seem somewhat pedestrian and antic climatic as is often the case with most often played concert staples. My only compliant about this live set.

The recording and mixing of this album is superb and captures many nuances that usually get lost in a live recording. If you're interested owning one of the better Floyd alumni live discs, you can't do better than Live At Gdansk. 4 stars.

SteveG | 4/5 |


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