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Pink Floyd - The Division Bell CD (album) cover


Pink Floyd


Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.74 | 1907 ratings

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Cygnus X-2
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars 1994 saw the release of the last Pink Floyd album, The Division Bell. Some would suggest this to be one of the stronger albums in the Pink Floyd catalogue (like me), and some cast it off in belief that only Pink Floyd with Roger Waters is worthy of a listen. If you're part of the latter half, then you need to stop thinking that and get this album. Not only are all the songs on here strong, most of the old Floydian feel has returned, with the help of Rick Wright being more involved this time around. David Gilmour this time brings in less collaborators as the last album, but he still has some old favorites (Bob Ezrin) around to help him craft the songs that are on the album. And with that 7 year break came a great improvement over the mediocre Momentary Lapse of Reason, and with that 7 year break came The Division Bell.

Cluster One is an opening instrumental, similar to that of Signs of Life off of A Momentary Lapse of Reason. It's a lot spacier, though, and Wright and Gilmour are great on this track. What do You Want From Me follows. A strong riff that is remnicient of Have a Cigar (off of Wish You Were Here), and some great vocals from Gilmour, this gives a great vocal introduction to the album. Poles Apart follows, and some great vocals and guitar work from Gilmour are highlights of this track. Wright really comes into his own on this track as well. Marooned landed Pink Floyd a Grammy Nomination for Best Rock Instrumental (which I believe they beat Rush out for). Gilmour still shines on this track, with more incredible soloing.

A Great Day For Freedom makes references to the old Floyd Warhorse The Wall with lyrics, "On the day the wall came down". The harmony vocals from Gilmour and Wright are spot on and a strong riff from the group keeps the track together, and then another classic Gilmour solo is played. Wearing the Inside Out is the only Wright lead vocal on the album. The song has a similar feel to Wright's solo albums, and his voice has a great feel when put against the earthy music. Take it Back is another strong track. with (you guessed it) even more great soloing from David Gilmour, and some precise drumming from Mason on this one. Coming Back to Life has a great guitar intro from Gilmour, still showing his musical prowess and craft. The vocals and drumming on this album are also highlights.

Keep Talking has instrumental bits augmented with phrases from Stephen Hawking. Some great backing vocal and nice lyrics from Gilmour really give this song an older Floyd feel. Lost For Words keeps up the same tradition as the rest of the album and provides more great guitar spots for Gilmour. High Hopes concludes the album, and it is definitely the best song on the album. A consistent bell in the background is further augmented by great classical guitar, and some earthy synth tones. An acoustic interlude in the middle of the song gives it a Welcome to the Machine feel, but the orchestrated background really gives it an emotional boost and heightens the atmosphere. Towards the end of the song, Gilmour gives a great slide solo that shows he's a master at that instrument, providing emotional lines that fit well with the backing beat.

Overall, this is definitely in my top 5 Floyd albums. It has all the great elements, great vocals, great keyboards, great drumming, great guitar... and there in lies my only gripe with the album, there are almost too many guitar solos, as if every track features 2 minutes of soloing from Gilmour. Now there's nothing wrong with that, it's just a little excessive, and it would have been nice to get a couple of Wright solos in there. But in the end, The Division Bell is a great effort that I think everyone should listen to. 4.5/5.

Cygnus X-2 | 4/5 |


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