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Track List: 1. Another Brick In the Wall 4:00 2. Welcome To the Machine 7:51 3. Comfortably Numb 6:54 4. Shine On You Crazy Diamond 6:50 5. Us & Them 6:18 6. Young Lust 4:20 7. Run Like Hell 5:09 8. Any Colour You Like 4:13 9. Money 6:06 10. Have a Cigar 5:17 11. Breathe 4:52 All songs: by Roger Waters & PINK FLOYD. Cast: GUITARISTS - Billy Sherwood (Yes, World Trade) Bob Kulick (Kiss) Steve Lukather (Toto) Ronnie Montrose (Montrose, Gamma) Dweizil Zappa (just a son of Frank Zappa) :And others: KEYBOARDISTS - Tony Kaye (Yes) Steve Porcaro (Toto) Derek Sherinian (Dream Theater, Planet X) :And others: BASSISTS - Chris Squire (Yes) Mike Porcaro (Toto) Jimmy Haslip (Pink Floyd Live in 1988) :And others: DRUMMERS - Alan White (Yes) Eric Singer (Black Sabbath, Kiss) Aynsley Dunbar (Whitesnake) :And others: VOCALISTS - Glenn Hughes (Black Sabbath, Deep Purple) Bobby Kimball (Toto) Tommy Shaw (Styx) :And others: Produced by Bob Kulick & Billy Sherwood. Engineered by B. Sherwood at "4 TUNE" studio, CA, USA. Mastered by Kris Solem at "Future Disc".
Prologue. It's just another brick in the wall set of tribute albums. Surprisingly, there are neither Pigs nor any other Animals on this tribute album, which for some reason is called "Pigs & Pyramids", and not "Bricks & Pyramids", as it must've been titled (see track list).
The Album. Of course, it would've been something marvelous, but if I had never listened to Pink Floyd (and I listened to all of their albums) I would say that this is probably the best Progressive Hard Rock album I've ever heard. Indeed, thanks to the fact that "Bricks & Pyramids" was recorded within the precincts of the same studio in its entirety, it sounds like an album of a unified stylistics performed by the same band. All of this, in my view, makes "Bricks & Pyramids" a really outstanding effort, unlike most of the other tribute albums that I've heard. And even though every song here presents a different singer, most of the vocals on the album are quite rough and, this way, they're, on the whole, much more similar among themselves than those on the albums of The Alan Parsons Project, for instance. Seven out of the eleven tracks that are presented here were performed with a very active use of heavy and harsh riffs and solos of electric and bass guitar, positively monotonous (i.e. hypnotic) beats of drums, and quite rough, truly Rock vocals. These are: Another Brick In the Wall, Welcome To the Machine, Young Lust, Run Like Hell, Any Colour You Like, Money, and Have a Cigar (1, 2, 6 to 10). All of them, and even Money, sound, overall, much heavier than the originals. The heaviest of these songs is Young Lust (6). Sung by Glenn Hughes, it sounds like being taken from Black Sabbath's "Seventh Star"* album rather than the Pink Floyd repertoire. (*That album, IMHO, was Glenn's real hour of triumph, even though he was then under the pressure of cocaine dependence.) Much to my pleasure, there are no female vocalizes on "Bricks & Pyramids" at all. Though the only instrumental piece here, Any Colour You Like (8), features, nevertheless, a few of the male vocalizes. The heavy and harsh guitar riffs and solos are present on each of the remaining four songs as well. Though on the whole, all four of these songs: Comfortably Numb, Shine On You Crazy Diamond, Us & Them, and Breathe (3 to 5, & 11), sound here like the high-quality Progressive Hard Rock ballads.
Summary. Well, this tribute to Pink Floyd became the result of the joint effort of the real Progressive Rock stars, which, though, doesn't much matter (at least for me). As I've mentioned above, the main merit of this album is its stylistic integrity. The classic Pink Floyd songs, done here in the vein of Progressive Hard Rock, sound truly excellent, to my taste. In short, this is one of the most successful tribute albums that I've ever heard.
VM. October 28, 2002
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