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Richard Wright - Wet Dream CD (album) cover

WET DREAM

Richard Wright

 

Crossover Prog

3.92 | 206 ratings

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Psychedelic Paul
5 stars RICHARD WRIGHT (1943-2008) is of course best-known as the legendary keyboard maestro with Pink Floyd. He's appeared on all but one of Pink Floyd's albums, including a posthumous appearance on "The Endless River" (2014), which was released six years after his untimely death from cancer at the age of 65. The only Pink Floyd album Richard Wright didn't appear on was "The Final Cut" (1983), which was really a Roger Waters solo album in all but name. This album, Wet Dream (1978), was the first of two solo albums, with his second album "Broken China", following 18 years later in 1996. Wright also released a New Wave album as one half of a short-lived duo called Zee in 1984. The band line up for the "Wet Dream" album consisted of Richard Wright (vocals, keyboards), Mel Collins (saxophones, flute), Snowy White (guitars), Larry Steele (bass guitar) & Reg Isidore (drums & percussion). All ten songs on the album were written by Richard Wright and the album cover design was by Hipgnosis. The album passed by virtually unnoticed at the time of its release in the late 1970's, but it's now gaining some well- deserved recognition, thanks to Prog Archives, You Tube, and the Internet. Let's plunge into a "Wet Dream" now and see what this rediscovered album with the rather risque title has to offer.

Many of the songs on the album have a watery theme, hence the title "Wet Dream", and so we begin with "Mediterranean Sea", an instrumental opening number which has all of the musical elements we've come to know and love over the years from Pink Floyd. There's the pleasing sound of a piano and synth combined together in perfect harmony and a gorgeous saxophone solo from Mel Collins (of King Crimson fame). It's as close to the sound of Pink Floyd as you can get without actually BEING Pink Floyd. This beautiful piece of music wouldn't have seemed out of place on the classic "Dark Side of the Moon" album. We hear the sound of Richard Wright singing solo for the first time on Song No. 2 "Against the Odds" - no relation to the Phil Collins song of the same name. The song is another pleasingly harmonious and melodious song that would be worthy of a place on any Pink Floyd album. In time-honoured tradition, where the singer wears his heart on his sleeve, it's a romantic ballad about love's mysterious ways and the sad break-up of a relationship. We're used to hearing the sound of Richard Wright's harmonising vocals on many of Pink Floyd's albums, but this is where he gets the chance to take centre-stage and really stretch his vocal chords. He sounds pretty good too as a lead vocalist for someone who's better known as a keyboard player. Returning to a watery theme again for "Cat's Cruise", another Floyd-esque instrumental number with a wonderful and mellifluous saxophone solo. Just bask in the glow of this beautifully warm piece of music and imagine yourself out on deck in the sunshine on a sea cruise. It's the kind of feel-good music that's enough to brighten up anyone's day. Sailing onwards now, we come to "Summer Elegy", an uplifting and euphonious piano number that floats over you like a warm breeze. Despite the uplifting and inspirational feel to the music, the lyrics tell a different story:- "Something's gotta give, We can't carry on like this, One year on and more, Unsure where do we go from here?, Many nights and many days I've spent with you, Talking about what we should do, I can't say, Nothing's clear to me no more." ..... Yes, it's another sad tale of love gone sour. To close out Side One, comes "Waves", another watery-themed instrumental number. It's a magical piece of music combining keyboards and saxophone in true Pink Floyd fashion. This soothing and sophisticated melody will leave you feeling like you're sailing on the crest of a wave.

Sailing onto Side Two now and we arrive at our "Holiday" destination, the longest song on the album, running at just over 6 minutes long. "Holiday" is a powerful and passionately uplifting ballad with these heartfelt lyrics:- "It was meant to be a holiday, Building castles by the sea, Another way to live for you and me, Time to pause, Consider what we've done, The wind is blowing, So come, Let's take a holiday." ..... It's a song guaranteed to pull at the heartstrings, and if this song doesn't move you, then you must be a statue. The curiously titled "Mad Yannis Dance" is up next. I've no idea what it's about as it's another instrumental piece. It's not particularly mad and you can't dance to it, but it's a pleasant-sounding number all the same, sounding like a slow plodding march. We're into funky Jazz-Rock territory with "Drop in from the Top", a lively instrumental piece with an upbeat feel to it, which leads us into "Pink's Song", another emotionally appealing ballad. This sad song continues the theme of a broken relationship with these touching lyrics:- "Patiently, you watched us play parts you'd seen before, Even then, We sometimes asked, Would you keep us all?, Caught between the tangled web, You helped set us free, Sadly, then, you lost yourself, so you had to leave." ..... It sounds like Richard Wright is writing from personal experience, straight from the heart, with those heart-wrenching and melancholic lyrics. And so, we come to the end of our wonderful musical cruise now with a lively and Jazzy instrumental number, "Funky Deux", and funky it is too!

Richard Wright has really struck gold with this masterful album of uplifting and emotionally appealing tunes. It's bound to appeal to fans of Pink Floyd, as the album has basically the same Floyd-esque sound we've come to know and love over the last five decades, the only difference being that this album has more of a Jazzy feel to it. Prepare to set sail on the musical cruise of a lifetime with "Wet Dream", a maritime delight from beginning to end. This music is just sublime!

Psychedelic Paul | 5/5 |

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