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Music / The Endless River

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It's louder than words, this thing that we do.

The Endless River is the fifteenth and final studio album by Pink Floyd, released in 10 November 2014 through Parlophone Records in the UK and Columbia Records in the US. Their first album after twenty years and their first double-LP since The Wall nearly 40 years priornote , it is also the first after the deaths of both Richard Wright and the long-departed founding member Syd Barrett.

Most of the album is comprised of instrumentals, with only one song with lead vocals by David Gilmour. Much of the album is composed of out-takes from The Division Bell, and so features Wright posthumously. It was the first album since The Final Cut not to have a supporting tour, owing in part to the sense of finality that Gilmour and Mason wanted out of the record.

Compared to previous Pink Floyd albums, The Endless River is a far more ambient-oriented affair, with considerable focus on mood and texture than conventional melody (largely due to it consisting primarily of old instrumental outtakes). The broad majority of the album is purely instrumental, with the only lyrical song on it being the closing track, "Louder Than Words". Like most previous songs from the Gilmour-led incarnation of Pink Floyd, the lyrics for it were penned by Gilmour's wife, Polly Samson.

Preceded by The Division Bell.


LP One

Side One

  1. "Things Left Unsaid" (4:26)
  2. "It's What We Do" (6:17)
  3. "Ebb and Flow" (1:55)

Side Two

  1. "Sum" (4:48)
  2. "Skins" (2:37)
  3. "Unsung" (1:07)
  4. "Anisina" (3:16)

LP Two

Side Three

  1. "The Lost Art of Conversation" (1:42)
  2. "On Noodle Street" (1:42)
  3. "Night Light" (1:42)
  4. "Allons-y (1)" (1:57)
  5. "Autumn '68" (1:35)
  6. "Allons-y (2)" (1:32)
  7. "Talkin' Hawkin'" (3:29)

Side Four

  1. "Calling" (3:37)
  2. "Eyes to Pearls" (1:51)
  3. "Surfacing" (2:46)
  4. "Louder Than Words" (6:36)

Blu-ray Bonus Tracks (Deluxe Edition):

  1. "TBS9" (2:28)
  2. "TBS14" (4:11)
  3. "Nervana" (5:31)

CD and Blu-ray releases are on a single disc each

Principal Members:

  • David Gilmour - guitar, lead vocals, keyboard, piano, VCS3, bass
  • Nick Mason - drums, percussion, vocals
  • Richard Wright - organ, piano, keyboard, vocals, synthesizer, vibraphone

With world-weary grace, we've taken our places; we could curse it or nurse it or give it a trope...:

  • Anaphora: The choruses of "Louder Than Words" begin nearly every line with "it's louder than words."
  • Bookends: The ending of "Louder Than Words" reprises the synth arpeggio that opens "Things Left Unsaid". Additionally, the opening lines of "Louder Than Words", "we bitch and we fight, diss each other on sight," recall the interview snippet in "Things Left Unsaid" of David Gilmour stating that "we shout and argue and fight, and work it on out."
  • Call-Back: Multiple feature throughout the album.
    • The album's title is taken from a lyric from the song "High Hopes" from The Division Bell.
    • "Things Left Unsaid" samples interviews with Richard Wright, David Gilmour, and Nick Mason (the three members who play on the album) from the Concert Film Pink Floyd: Live at Pompeii.
    • The song "Louder Than Words" is taken from a lyric from the song "Sorrow" from A Momentary Lapse of Reason.
    • "Autumn '68" derives its title as a play off of "Summer '68" from Atom Heart Mother.
    • The song "Talkin' Hawkin'" samples from a British Telecom advert, which was also used for "Keep Talking" from The Division Bell.
    • The synth-trumpet lead in "It's What We Do" recalls the Minimoog synth-trumpet lead in the instrumental sections of "Shine On You Crazy Diamond".
  • Distant Finale: The band's final album, released 20 years after the previous one.
  • Epic Rocking: "It's What We Do" (6:17). and "Louder Than Words" (6:36).
  • Fading into the Next Song: As is the standard for Pink Floyd, with the only gaps being fade-outs at the end of each side; this is even the case on CD and digital copies.
  • Grand Finale: Barring the one-off charity single "Hey, Hey, Rise Up!", the album acts as the last note for Pink Floyd as a whole. "Louder Than Words" in particular is explicitly structured as a final closing of the door on the band.
  • Gratuitous French: "Allons-y".
  • Instrumentals: The whole album bar "Louder Than Words". Some tracks include snippets of spoken-word samples, but only the last track has any sung vocals.
  • Loudness War: Averted. The album comes in at DR11, which is an astounding amount of dynamic range for a recording from 2014.
  • Non-Indicative Name: "Autumn '68" features an archival recording of Richard Wright playing the Royal Albert Hall pipe organ during the late '60s, but contrary to the title the recording was from June of 1969.
  • One-Word Title: "Sum", "Skins", "Unsung", "Anisina", "Calling", "Surfacing".
  • Shout-Out: "Allons-y". Not the first reference they've made.
  • Siamese Twin Songs: Almost the entire album, with the only cutoff points being the gaps between each side. To this extent, the CD release has the entirety of each side sequenced with the songs in such close proximity to one another that the disc seemingly appears to only have four tracks (the songs are still sequenced individually though, meaning you can skip across all 18 tracks at will.
  • Special Guest:
    • Killing Joke bassist Youth provides supplementary keyboard/synth parts for the album.
    • The electronic string group Escala plays string parts on "Louder Than Words".
  • Textless Album Cover: Par for the course for Pink Floyd.
  • That's All, Folks!: The last Pink Floyd album.
  • Title Drop: The title of "Things Left Unsaid" appears in a sample from one of Richard Wright's interviews in Pink Floyd: Live at Pompeii.

"Go to heaven, Wright."