Necroeconomy: Pink Floyd’s The Endless River (2014)
7 novembre 2014 § Lascia un commento
OK, I admit it: when I was 11 or 12, I too fell in the trap set by the Pink Floyd trademark, ODDLY ENOUGH, in the Dark Side Of The Moon album, that I listened to so many times I’d be nauseated to put it back in my stereo now. The same must be said about the other albums I got afterwards, “Pink Floyd” written on the cover was enough for that album to be mine. The story is a classic: in the beginning was the prism on black background, then Wish You Were Here, because your parents have got only those two on vinyl, then out of the “home archives” comes A Momentary Lapse Of Reason on MC, then you find out that, in 1970, your father gave your mother Atom Heart Mother on vinyl as a present and who knows where it is now, and you don’t even know the story everybody knows: first Syd Barrett, then democracy, then the Waters-dictatorship, then the bore of breathing culminating in The Division Bell, that I listened to twice in my whole life. No need to say, my favorite phase goes from Atom Heart Mother (I don’t listen to that CD anymore, but I LAUGHED HARD AS HELL when I listened to it) to The Wall, the acme of the Waters-dictatorship before everyone stopped and stared at the ruins in The Final Cut. After The Division Bell, we have revivals, anniversaries, remasterings, reissues, reremasterings, rereissues, rereremasterings and what the fuck was wrong in the previous editions, testicular elephantiasis, more anniversaries, solo albums, solo live tours every once in a while, Wright dead, more revivals, even more anniversaries, more reissues, a 2-CD greatest hits collection called Echoes that a 2004 The Final Cut reissue made completely pointless and useless. This pointlessness is confirmed by The Endless River, its release has been blared for months everywhere, as well as the fact that it was more or less the same thing the Beatles did with some John Lennon’s demos in the first two volumes of their Anthology: some Wright’s demos discarded while recording The Division Bell are dug out from Pink Floyd’s personal archives and played upon by Gilmour, Mason (the guy that clocks into the drum set since The Wall) and all the other musicians that carry Gilmour’s catheter since A Momentary Lapse Of Reason. The result is a collection of 18 pieces: one track sung by Gilmour and 17 instrumentals that are no other than ambient interludes of interludes of interludes of incomplete stuff of badly assembled demos of intermissions of ambient interludes. All things considered, the worst is about to come. And here we go…
Since “Pink Floyd” has mysteriously become a synonym of “NASA” some time ago, the sidereal samples (courtesy of Astronomy Domine) in Things Left Unsaid introduce us in It’s What We Do, that sounds like a dead and transfigured Shine On You Crazy Diamond; the anonymous Ebb And Flow brings us to Sum, in which the organ wants to do the echoed guitar beginning in Run Like Hell, before an idiotic drummer comes in convinced he’s playing Time and an even more idiotic synth comes in convinced it’s On The Run; then it’s the turn of Skins, a pale imitation of A Saucerful Of Secrets’ central part; Unsung, that’s Welcome To The Machine aborted, and Anisina, mocking Us And Them, put an end to the first part of the album.
Between the two anonymous The Lost Art of Conversation and Night Light, On Noodle Street, in which Have A Cigar tries to melt itself with What Do You Want From Me, takes place, while between the two parts of Allons-y, a watered-down Run Like Hell, we find Autumn ’68 and its church organ à la A Saucerful Of Secrets; from Keep Talking’s waste comes Talkin’ Hawkin’, that paves the way for Calling, a superflaccid version of Echoes, and Eyes To Pearls, a One Of These Days embryo interacting with a Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun for spoiled teenagers; Surfacing is Dogs flowing and blowing into Wish You Were Here that, in the only sung track called Louder Than Words, tries to disguise between Comfortably Numb’s wrinkles, preannounced by Hey You being preannounced by High Hopes’ bells.
Here are the premises that make us say The Endless River aspires to be, though cryptically, the definitive Pink Floyd greatest hits collections. And greatest hits collections, though with new songs, aren’t and have never been worth a flying fuck. And I think that the pray we had to say in the Eighties was composed way back in 1968 by Syd Barrett, and I want to remember them this way. Going back to watching Greenaway’s movies. Here’s today’s theme: