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On An Island album cover

ON AN ISLAND /
REVIEW

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on an island
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On An Island album cover

 

light Intro:
6 March 2006 will be the official release date of "On An Island" and the day that David Gilmour will become 60. This will be his third solo album, the first was from '78, the second from '84! Or can we say that the, studio, Pink Floyd albums "A Momentary Lapse Of Reason" & "The Divison Bell" are "his solo" albums too? No I guess not, these were really Pink Floyd albums, they sound as Pink Floyd, his solo albums are different. Oh yes you can hear that it is David Gilmour (the voice and guitar of Pink Floyd says the sticker on the cover), but different...really different, but absolute hand crafted classical masterworks.
I don't like those subjectives as "the voice and guitar of...", but I must admit he was the only guitar player in Pink Floyd who reached so much fame. And his voice, together with Roger Waters voice was / is a trademark of this legendary band.
Maybe David is not the best writer of sharp lyrics. But when you are married with a lovely novelist and she's giving you a big hand, who cares?
Let me give a hint how this album sounds; his latest solo performances are from a few years ago and are known as "the Meltdown gigs". David stripped down and re-arranged the Pink Floyd songs in a more or less acoustic setting. "On An Island" is a step futher in that direction. The album is full of laid back atmospheres and I believe it's produced in heaven, but it is a sober one with lullabies and his magnificient trademark; floydian guitar work. But again it is not a "Pink Floyd" album.
This is my try to make a review, enjoy it and have a great listening experience with "On An Island" ;-)

david

 

Intermezzo I:
"I thought it was quite fun to release my album on my 60th birthday and embrace my seniority. I hope that one achieves maturity and contentment and even resignation to some extent as one gets older. I think I'm pretty content."
David Gilmour March 2006.

From Q [Ten Commandments] March 2006.

Castellorizon, a small Greek island for the coast of Turkey. A nice breathing space for David Gilmour and his family? The song is an instrumental track with the orchestra and David Gilmours recognizable guitar playing. An impressive start in the vein of "Signs of Life" & "Cluster One" of the previous mentioned Pink Floyd albums. It seems to me that this song catches the spirit and tunes of all the album tracks.
A hymne to his friends who he has lost.


swings The title track will appear as single. It starts with Rick Wright on Hammond and then wonderful close harmonies of David Crosby & Graham Nash, which sounds very well with the falsetto voice of David. Two great guitar solo's are making this song complete. Close your eyes and get lost in this wonderful good sounding landscape of your holiday island. Feel the warmth of the Mediterranean sun on your skin, enjoy the lazy ness, have a comfortable time and just be happy.
Most of the lyrics are written by Polly Samson & David, and just like the music this song reflects the whole album, smooth, unique gilmouresque guitar playing, wonderful orchestration, lyrics about love & life.

"...children again, on rusting swings getting higher...". Picture of Castellorizon by Polly.

blue grotto "The Blue", when I first heard this song it reminded me to an early Alan Parsons ballad; perfect orchestration, good vocals, from David & Rick Wright and at the end a perfect guitar solo.
Let this one wave into your brain and let the soaring guitar take it over...

A Blue Cave at Castellorizon

 :

light

Intermezzo II:
At one of the pictures from the inlay ("Take A Breath'/ "Red Sky At Night"), you can read:
Gnothi seauton (Greek): Know your self / thyself.
A precept inscribed in gold letters over the portico of the temple at Delphi. Its authorship has been ascribed to Pythagoras, to several of the wise men of Greece, and to Phemonoe, a mythical Greek poetess. According to Juvenal, this precept descended from heaven.

The most up tempo song of the album is "Take A Breath". The orchestration is sublime, this could be the second single. With a nice piece of lap steel guitar work. Great catchy rhythm, mmm I like this one extremely well. Think this will sound live great with an orchestra an Caroline Dale on her cello.
A song about raising up your kids.

David learned to read notes and plays saxes just a few years ago. On "Red Skies At Night" he led us hear that he successfully passed with flying colours. A short instrumental track.

A bit of blues with "This Heaven" and nice mellow organ (done by Georgie Fame) at the start. But this is not a sad bluesy lyric. David is happy with his life and he knows that he is blessed: "...This earthly heaven is enough for me...", he sings. David vocals are heavenly and here and there a bit lower. Together with "Take A Breath" and the first two songs of the album are these my favourite places "on the island".

live8

Intermezzo III:
David has some top of the bill craftsmen & women on board this graceful ship called "On An Island" . From the Polish Zbigniew Preisner, to Caroline Dale, Lucy Wakeford and all the others, see below for the complete list.
One name needs some explination I think; Bob Rado Klose. He was in the first setting of The Pink Floyd Sound and played guitar alongside Syd Barrett. When Syd introduced the first acid sounds, Bob's interest were photographing, so he left. Another guitarist was needed... David Gilmour was the lucky one.
So far as I know, Bob never played profesional guitar after his leaving, he became a photographer and stayed close friends with David. In fact they were friends from their childhood. Read here the interview with Mojo. Added 11-03-06.

 

"Then We Close Our Eyes" is another instrumental track, started as a jam between David & B.J.Cole, with some innovative combination of instruments: glass harmonica, cello, cornet, weissenbacker guitar (done by B.J.Cole), cmbt and the usual stuff; bass, guitars, percussion, drums. All mixed up with "island"-sounds, sit down and have a good listening turn and take a imaginary walk on Castellorizon. Nice to wake up with, when you're lying on the beach and it becomes time for an apperativo:

We know "Smile" from the meltdown gigs. Another nice acoustic love song, words and backing vocals by Polly. David is playing all the instruments by himself; guitars, percussion, bass & hammond, except the drums, played by Willy Wilson.

"A Pocketful Of Stones", this ballad starts impressive with the orchestra and an amazing soaring solo is carried away into the sea by the waves of the orchestra, you'll get drowned in this beautiful song.

The last highlight: "Where We Start" with another excellent drummer named Andy Newmark. David takes care of the guitars, bass, hammond & percussion accompanied by the orchestra. When I become 60 and still sing these lines from the bottom of my heart I known that my life has succeeded... "We waltz in the moonlight...so much behind us, still far to go...".

The art work is breathing out the holiday feeling you get when you're on an Mediterranean island. Nicely done, the cd got an hard cover, a sort of book.

lullabye Polly is responsible for the most lyrics, she's a novelist and mother and that reflects in the choice of the lines about love, life, friendship and trying to see things in perspective. So "On An Island" became the most personal album of David Gilmour.
Maybe a bit smooth, but it is lovely done and with the music you'll have a great relaxing time. Doesn't matter where you are, you will feel the sunshine on your face and the butterflies in your stomach.
The trademark of this cd is Davids voice and his virtuousity guitar playing. That with the fine orchestra and the great musicians on board makes it really worth to take this timeless cd to your favourite island and relax and become aware how good life can be.

 

Stay in love &
carpe Diem..., quam minimum credula postero,
Nick from the lovely South of the Netherlands.

 

Epiloge.
As I said before this is not a Pink Floyd album. This an awesome David Gilmour solo album. If you want to have a new Pink Floyd album go out and buy the new RPWL album or Nick Barretts "Believe" (Pendragon), Mostly Autumn, Porcupine Tree or whatever new bands you like.
This is just Davids best and most personal solo album ever, not more or less. And I'm enjoying it.

banner


 

Musicians;

Polly Samson - piano and vocals,
Robert Wyatt - cornet, voice, percussion,
Jools Holland - piano,
David Crosby - vocals,
Graham Nash - vocals,
Chris Thomas - keyboards, engineer, producer,
Phil Manzanera - keyboard and piano,
Zbigniew Preisner- orchestration & piano,
Andy Newmark - drums & percussion,
B. J. Cole - Weissenborn guitar,
Willie Wilson - drums.
Lucy Wakeford - harp,
Ged Lynch - drums,
Paul Wix Wickens - keyboards,
Georgie Fame - keyboards, piano,
Chris Stainton - keyboards,
Bob Klose - guitar (he was involved in The Pink Floyd Sound!),
Caroline Dale - cello,
Alasdair Malloy - glass harmonica,
Chris Laurence - double bass,
Ilan Eshkeri - programming (he's a composer mostly film music),
Guy Pratt - bass and his father-in-law,
Rick Wright - vocals and organ.


 

Orchestral arrangements:
Conducted by Robert Ziegler
Orchestra recorded at Abbey Road Studios by Simon Rhodes
Orchestral Leader David Juritz
Strings contracted by Hilary Skewes, Buick Production Ltd

Recorded at Astoria, Abbey Road, British Grove, Gallery Studio and at home

Artwork by Steve Knee.

Produced by David Gilmour, Phil Manzanera and Chris Thomas

Recorded by Andy Jackson and David Gilmour
Assisted by Damon Iddins, Devin Workman and Jamie Johnson Technical support by Phil Taylor


 


david in his younger days A post at Davids Weblog;

Hello,

Hearing the whole album every free minute since friday. It was awesome the first listening turn and it grabbed me more and more. The whole album breathes out that relaxed Castellorizon feeling... and that voice and those guitars. Lovely... Well done you all, thanks!

So I try to imagine that I'm lying on the Castellorizons beach, music all around, my hand in my wifes hand, the children playing and lauching at the background... sun shining and slowly the moon slides slowly before the sun...

Enjoy it!

Nick from the lovely South of the Netherlands.

PS1 March 29th 2006 could be that day. (...and the sun is eclipsed by the moon...)

PS2 Thoughts from a crazy Dutchman: I almost wrote: "maybe it could become a new DSOTM" (the best album in our history...), and maybe that would become reality (so as I can speak for myself). DSOTM has more bombast, that belongs to the concept of that record: a young musician that reaches fame and is running in the wheel of fortune, an artist that must catch up with the sun... and then 30 years later, he is on age, he can put things in perspective, now he knows what is really important. What would he write; "On An Island", no more no less.

It becomes time for a beer and some fantastic music "OAI" I guess.. cheers...

hope the gig was fantastic.

Posted by: Nick at March 7, 2006 11:21 PM

 


My musical reverences;

 

Kate Bush

Aerial '05

Phil Manzanera

50 Minutes Later ('05) &
6 p.m. ('04)(with David Gilmour)
RPWL

As God Has Failed ('00) &
Live, Start The Fire ('05)
ProgAid

All Around The World ('05)(great single with 7 guitar solo's in a row...) www.progaid.com... 7 euro's all in...
smile Please listen and be amazed.
Crosby & Nash

 

Crosby & Nash ('04)

 

Porcupine Tree

The Sky moves Sideways ('95)
No-Man FlowerMouth ('99- re-issue '05)
NoSoundSol29 ('05)
BlackfieldBlackfield ('04)

 

Eric Clapton

His latest 5 albums or so.

Steely Dan

The latest releases

Donald Fagan

The NightFly ('82) or Morph the Cat ('06)(?)

Sting

All This Time ('01)

David Byrne

Live Union Chapel London ('05)

Coldplay

Every album ;-)

Richard Wright

Wet Dream ('78)

Pink Floyd

Wish You Were Here

 


live8
More Info about
The Island Castallorizon

Listen to what David has to tell
about the songs

session players On An Island.
session work with
live-appearances with.
pictures of the Meltdown DVD.

back to David Gilmour.

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A New Review of some of my most appricated Musical Friends;
members from Pendragon, Mostly Autumn, Magenta and others....
Added 27th of May.

 

gull

 

IndexHome, home again.

 

 

Updated Friday evening 03-03-06 /
dot's & points sunday the 06th.
Hope my English is readable: Gnothi seauton ;-)

by Nick from the lovely South of the Netherlands.

Thanks to Mojo, the magazine of April
includes a big interview with David Gilmour.

Sine on David!


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