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David Gilmour - On An Island CD (album) cover

ON AN ISLAND

David Gilmour

 

Prog Related

3.54 | 287 ratings

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FragileDT
4 stars Now let's be honest. David Gilmour's solo projects have never been that good. His first "self-titled" album was decent for bluesy rock, but he absolutely lost it all with "About Face" which sounded too much like the "80s." Upon hearing that Gilmour would release a new album I was skeptical as to whether I would pick it up. It's release date came and I got suckered in to picking it up. Little did I know that I was in for a surprise.

The album opened up with "Castellorization" which immediately reminded me of the beginning of "Shine on You Crazy Diamond." Gilmour's guitar comes in so powerfully here and the signature of his guitar sound is more present than ever. This was the perfect open to a Gilmour solo album that I could've imagined. The following song "On an Island" is probably the one that most people have heard. The song immediately reminded me of Floyd with a nice soft and melodic chorus (with the help of David Crosby and Graham Nash.) This song has a great atmosphere and caught my attention right away.

"The Blue" is another calm song with excellent "dreamy" melodies and absolutely fantastic slide guitar. Gilmour plays with so much emotion with the slide that it really creates it's own atmosphere. "Take a Breath" reminds me of a great Pink Floyd song. It more upbeat and it helps the album come alive a little from it's slower pace. Many people will consider this song the albums finest moment.

Gilmour pulls out the saxophone in "Red Sky At Night." This is a pretty good short instrumental that brings us to "This Heaven." The latter reminds me a lot of "Have a Cigar." It is a very powerful bluesy song with a great groove to it. The lyrics are fantastic to this song and you can tell that Gilmour has matured a lot. The line "This Earthly heaven is enough for me" gets stuck in my head for days after listening to it.

"Then I Close My Eyes" has a folk/country type feel to it. It features Robert Wyatt on cornet and adds a different feel to the album that works very well as a transition to the final 3, softer songs. "Smile" is another song that Gilmour busts out the slide guitar. He really knows how to play the slide well and convey the emotion and atmosphere of the song. The following song "A Pocketful of Stones" is the albums finest in my opinion. The harp and the Hammond organ (played by Gilmour) sound fantastic and really make the "dark" feel to this song very strong. "Where we Start" is another soft, slow flowing song. The melodies on this song are slightly weaker than the rest of the album but it is a good closer.

Overall, I was very surprised when hearing "On an Island." I wasn't expecting much and ended up getting an album that I have listened to many times and will continue to listen to more and more. If you are a Pink Floyd fan you must pick this up, but remember, you can hear a lot of Pink Floyd in this album, but it still is David Gilmour, and not Floyd. It shouldn't be compared to another Floyd album but looked at and viewed on it's own. I can't give it 5 stars because it isn't a masterpiece of progressive music but I would consider it a masterpiece of soft and melodic atmospheric rock, barely touching the lines of space rock. I hope Gilmour continues his solo career for years to come.

FragileDT | 4/5 |

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