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Customer Review

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Stark side of the Tune, 23 Oct. 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Metallic Spheres (Audio CD)
There can be little doubt that this is a slick and somewhat ruthless exercise in marketing. The large sticker to the front of the packaging with 'Dark side' colouring,(triangle included), and a 'wall' like signature hopes to grab the eye of any passing Floyd fan, (although fans of Floyds earlier work may well have a bone to pick with the claim that Gilmour is 'the voice of Pink Floyd'),.
So is this just a rip off? Well at first glance you could be forgiven for thinking it was. After all there's the idea of there being just 2 tracks but really it's 5 tracks flowing into one another. Then there's the 'should I get the 1 disc or 2 disc?' question.
To start with the most important thing is the music itself. There is definitely a strong 'Dark side' vibe throughout but in fairness that was and still is an amazing album so I have no problem with a little nod in it's direction. However this is not just some lame 're-interpretation but has it's own very unique and laid back approach. There are all sorts of effects thrown in here from voices to banging on various objects but what is always constant is Gilmours flowing guitar that underpins everything and a synth line that changes often but constantly gives everything a musical foundation and never lets this all drift off into some avant garde pointless noise. This remains musical throughout and although the guitar playing is nearly always subdued it is what provides the musical hook which the listener is brought back to as it drifts around the mix. Musically for me this whole project is surprisingly effective and is very easy to return to. There is always something new to hear and it provides a refreshing addition to the whole Ambient catalogue.
Needless to say production values are spot on and go a long way to making this such a successful release.
So what of the 2 disc release? Well you'd be forgiven for thinking you get a re-mixed 2nd disc that offers a completely different album for your extra 3 quid. What you actually get may be remixed but it's exactly the same as the main disc only it is presented in '3D60 Audio'. What this means is that when you play it through your headphones you get an effect as if the music and it's effects are moving around you 360 degrees. It would appear that this is still an impossible task but credit where it's due this is a fair attempt and it certainly opens the mix out so that everything pans out much further around the listener although it rarely feels is if sounds are behind you. An interesting and for me worthwhile 2nd disc that gives the album room to breathe and on occasion makes the listener jump as an effect opens up to one side or another.
Slick marketing and gimmicks aside this may not be the musical event of the decade but it is a nice album that mixes ambient with the undoubted guitar skills of Dave Gilmour to great effect. Musical and very enjoyable it is never dull and avoids being pretentious. Often a bare musical landscape but always fascinating.
All in all a worthwhile and welcome release and well worth getting in the 2 disc format.
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Review Details

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Reviewer

Friarofdoom
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   

Location: Ilkeston Derbyshire United Kingdom

Top Reviewer Ranking: 1,064