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Pink Floyd - The Wall CD (album) cover

THE WALL

Pink Floyd

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

4.05 | 2068 ratings

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Sinusoid
Prog Reviewer
2 stars I'm in a small minority that claims Pink Floyd has been on a downhill slope since DARK SIDE OF THE MOON, although the previous two albums have plenty of great moments. However, the band seems to have taken a severe nosedive from ANIMALS, binning their progressive psych-rock sound that made them famous in the first place and gaining made- for-FM-radio soft rock. The concept Roger brings is now comparable with ''Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous'' with weird left turns that make no sense. I've never really understood this concept, particularly the second half where most of the filler material comes in.

Songs like ''The Show Must Go On'', ''Vera'', ''Bring the Boys Back Home'', ''The Happiest Days of Our Lives'' and ''Nobody Home'' scream filler to me, serving no purpose other than pad the story length. A standard trick on the first side seems to begin the song quietly then let it erupt unreasonably (and predictably) halfway through like on ''The Thin Ice'' or ''Don't Leave Me Now''. Radio overkill ruined ''Another Brick in the Wall 2'' and ''Comfortably Numb'' for me; the former is lame and vacuous with a VERY disco drumbeat (I believe this wholeheartedly). ''Comfortably Numb'' has a great guitar solo from Gilmour, but that's the only positive I have; the keys lull me to sleep and the rhythm section is amazingly inept.

Highlights are few for me. ''Mother'' is the closest as it progressively builds to an interesting climax, ''Goodbye Blue Sky'' is a nice, poignant track and I can see the classic value in ''Hey You'' and ''Run Like Hell''. Most of the time, the songs themselves are just flat and lifeless, but Waters sometimes worsens them with his vocals. When he sings in a soft baritone, I can deal with it, but he screams in a higher register all too often that sounds like nails on a chalkboard. I also found the last two tracks utterly ridiculous; ''The Trial'' is nearly unbearable for me with the over-the-top and stuffy orchestra.

Is THE WALL an essential album of prog rock? Yes to a fault. THE WALL is a mammoth in the prog rock world in terms of popularity and appeal. And I will say that THE WALL is meant to be observed as a whole rather than a bunch of songs. But I find that the story is too superfluous and the music is much too in common with generic late 70's soft rock. There's way too much Waters and not enough Pink Floyd here, and that's enough of a difference for me to pan this one. There are better Pink Floyd albums out there for long- term usage.

Sinusoid | 2/5 |

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