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On an Island
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Product Description

David Gilmour's solo career hasn't exactly been creatively restless; this is but the third album by the Pink Floyd guitarist, and first in 18 years. But that seemingly lackadaisical career ethos hasn't prevented Gilmour from producing some of his finest work here, an album whose soaring, lyrical guitar lines will be familiar to Floyd fans, yet one also blessed by often surprising nuances and delicate musical textures. Gilmour's Division Bell collaborator Polly Samson is credited with most of the writing, helping conjure a moody, texturally rich "island" that's as much musical as it is personally and lyrically metaphorical. "Castellorizon," the impressionistic opening instrumental collage, presages much of what's to come in subtle ways, with Gilmour's emotionally-charged guitar lines climbing into realms usually staked out by contemporary Jeff Beck.

Gilmour's choice of collaborators is equally compelling, from the evocative orchestrations of Polish classical modernist Zbigniew Preisner and expected contributions from Floyd (Richard Wright and proto-Pink mate Rado "Bob" Klose) to a host of guest turns that span both decades and styles: Georgie Fame, Phil Manzanera, Jools Holland, Caroline Dale and Robert Wyatt. The title track is graced by the stately harmonies of David Crosby and Graham Nash while the instrumental "Then I Close My Eyes" spins a hypnotic, bayou-meets-boho ethos where Dale's gentle cello lines meet the melancholy cornet flourishes of Wyatt to challenge the very notions of genre itself. "This Heaven" finds Gilmour in unexpected R&B territory, weaving playful riffs with `60s London scenester Fame's Hammond organ and finding its lyrical spirituality in simple, personal intimacy, a subtext that wafts through the upbeat airiness of "The Blue" to the spare "Smile," spinning a surprisingly romantic elegy that co! mes satisfyingly full circle on the closing "Where We Start." No man may be an island, but Gilmour has nonetheless crafted a rewarding artistic oasis on this, his finest and most gently personal album. -- Jerry McCulley

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Japanese Digipak pressing. On An Island is the third David Gilmour solo album and his first studio recording since Pink Floyd's 1994 multi-platinum 'The Division Bell'. From the first moments of the sound collage that begins 'On An Island', you know it's a special experience that not only bears comparison with the best of Pink Floyd, but also confirms their lead guitarist and singer as an outstanding solo artist. Here he reveals a personal vision and a breadth of styles - folk, jazz, orchestral and rock - brought together as a unified piece by his lyrical guitar playing and instantly recognisable voice. On An Island is a collection of songs and instrumentals that had its genus in the critically acclaimed 2002 London Festival Hall concerts. Gilmour has stepped out of his super-group to discover he's still at his peak - and he's rightly pleased. 'It's my best and most personal work,' he says. 'Making it with my musician friends has been a positive experience on so many levels.' EMI. 2006.

The Third Solo Album from the Pink Floyd Singer/Guitarist.

Customer Reviews:

  • Its David Gilmour not Pink Floyd
    "On An Island" is a good album, and contains some of David's finest guitar playing. Yes, it is very mellow, but then again a lot of Pink Floyd's music was quite mellow as well. I really dont understand all these reviewers complaining about how David can't rock out anymore and what not. I never really considered Pink Floyd "rockers" anyway, their music was much too nuanced to be called ROCK. All of you Floyd Heads that hate anything that doesnt have Roger Water's depressing ranting attached to it should just go back and listen to "The Wall" or "The Final Cut" some more. I have been a Floyd fan for over thirty years, by the way. It just seems some people always have to attack Gilmour's lyrics and try to compare them to Waters'. OK, Roger is a better lyricist, but David IS the sound of (classic)Pink Floyd, the voice and the guitar.

    And on this album, David's voice and guitar sound as great as ever. His guitar solo at the end of the title track is one of his best, it is so filled with emotion that it gives me goosebumps. I think it can rival "Comfortably Numb" as the best Gilmour solo of all time. As a guitarist myself, I can only hope to be this expressive on my instrument, and this is why David Gilmour is so highly regarded as a guitarist, he totally epitomizes the less is more approach to lead guitar. When guitarists talk shop about "ultimate Strat tone", they are usually referring to Mr. Gilmour.

    Yes, there are a few throw away tracks on this album. In my opinion the strongest tracks are "On An Island", "The Blue" and "Smile". This is not a ROCK album. It is not a PINK FLOYD album, although parts of it will remind you of "Meddle" era Floyd. But it IS quality music made by a superb musician, and anyone who says it isn't is either a) not a musician, or b) a very narrow minded one. Give it a chance, and it will grow on you. ...more info
  • Easily the best album of 2006
    David Gilmour comes out of hiding with this stunning masterpiece he calls "On An Island". The singer/guitarist/songwriter/producer of Pink Floyd shocked fans with his most personal musical statement yet. While the sound is very Pink Floyd (why wouldnt it be though as Gilmour was the primary songwriter of Pink Floyd)it bears alot of emotion that was absent from his music before. The result is a very guitar driven melodic collection of songs. With his trademark guitar sound and his haunting voice Gilmour delivered the goods on this one. Pink Floyd colleauge Richard Wright joins Gilmour in his first solo album in nearly 20 years. The standout tracks are the title track, "Take A Breath" and "Smile". The tracks also play very well live and the only disappointing thing about this disc is...when it end's. Highly recommended!...more info
  • On an Island
    On an Island being Gilmour's 2006 release and his 3rd studio album and did very well in the charts reaching #1 in the UK albums chart and #6 in the Billboard 200. Even so I only find this album to be ok. Compared to other Pink Floyd albums it falls a bit flat. That is not to say that this is a bad album. The cd booklet contains all the lyrics, and a list of whom plays what on every track. 3/5....more info
  • Not a POP Album
    If you are looking for more DARK SIDE OF THE MOON go buy a NEKTAR album. This is more mature deeply spiritual and intellectual music. Some complained calling it bedtime music, But I say its wonderful dreamy music to relax or slide off to dreamland with. Davids best solo effort thus far and thats not knocking the other two at all. Its complicated and rich full soundscapes require several listens to really appreciate. You Waters fans who give Gilmour bad reviews because you are bitter, just ask yourself who still has a career. Who has had a great career since Waters got the boot? The only answer is David Gilmour. When you flip on a radio and hear that magical bluesy guitar that is instantly recognizable you know its Gilmour who was the star of PF. I loved the Waters Floyd as well but lets face it after THE WALL Roger took a big dump in the music industry. A shame we will never now see a reunion, but at least Gilmour is still soaring in his senior years....more info
  • Tear Down The Wall
    I feel one of my turns coming on. It's not that this album is necessarily "bad" it's just that halfway through the first song, you can't help wonder how great of a PF album this would have been if Waters had been involved. While Gilmour's guitar playing is always top notch , the lyrics and vocal lines are just mediocre. David is no Roger and they both seem to only be half as effective when working separately. Come on guys, tear down the wall between you two and put out another Floyd album. The show must go on!...more info
  • A true genius at his finest
    For all true Gilmour fans, this is just further proof of his genius. He plays no less than four instruments on each song as well as writing the lyrics. Many teamed up with his wife. This is a true love story put to music. From his ever intense lyrics to his soaring and sustaining guitar licks, this is true Gilmour at his finest. This has become one of my favorite all time albums. There is no one as brillant as Gilmour....more info
  • On An Island
    I purchased this cd for my husband. He has enjoyed it so much it has a permanent place in his cd player....more info
  • Music from an older Gilmour
    There's a lot of mood music on this cd and for that reason I didn't love 'On An Island' right off. But it's really good and everytime I hear Gilmour's guitar I'm amazed. He's still finding ways to make each line exciting after all these years.

    Nope, it's not Floyd, although there are a lot of Floyd-like sounds. Definitely worth five stars when you compare it to some of the other stuff getting released today....more info
  • Gilmour Still Has The "Touch"
    I have long given up hope that Pink Floyd would reunite for a new album, so I was very excited after hearing that David Gilmour had a new solo release coming out. Floyd have always been one of my favorite bands, and Gilmour one of my favorite guitarists. I have long considered him one of the most singular creative talents out there, with an inimitable playing style and tone, and a near-genius-level progressive sense of arrangement and composition.

    For all you Floyd fans out there, Pink Floyd this ain't. Certain echoes (no pun intended) of the band remain (especially in the spacy, near psychedelic intro "Castellorizon" and "The Blue"), but by and large this album is a more blues/folk oriented disc, which is not necessarily a bad thing. It certainly shows Gilmour's maturity, and is still laced with his beautiful, magical guitar soloing and tone (I swear, this guy picks up a Strat and something miraculous seems to pour out), but is not quite as grandiose and progressive as a Floyd release. Still highly recommended, and great "chill" music, with a mellow vibe. Recommended!...more info
  • music to go to sleep by
    I'm a huge David Gilmour fan, but this effort is just too slow and mellow throughout. Do not listen to while driving or operating heavy machinery.
    ...more info
  • Gilmour's got it.
    David Gilmour proves he can still put together an meaningful record. His voice is mesmerizing and his guitar work is everything a Gilmour or Pink fan is looking for. While David Gilmour will always be in the shadow of his former works, he has proved with "On An Island", that he can stand alone and cast a few shadows all by himself. ...more info
  • Listening To "On An Island" Right Now!
    I think this is a great CD; I'm listening to it as I write this! I think expectations, going into it, play a key role in how much you'll like it -- I had an open mind. Gilmour has matured, and so have I. I wouldn't say it's "easy listening" at all! I'm amazed that David still plays a mean guitar, and still has a soothing voice. The more I play it, the more I like it!...more info
  • Satisfying solo outing by Pink Floyd guitar hero
    David Gilmour has no careerist reasons to make records any more; he makes music because he wants to. The odd thing about this recording is that although it has a star-studded cast of helping hands (incl. Phil Manzanera, Crosby and Stills, Georgie Fame, and Floyd keyboardist Richard Wright), it sounds very intimate, a pure expression of Gilmour's personal happiness. As one might expect, it's very Floydian (think Meddle-era) but about as far removed from Roger Waters' paranoia as one could get. People who require a high testosterone content to their CDs might get bored with the peaceful, contented soundscapes here, but for those of us who need a sonic oasis in the midst of a gangsta-rap desert planet, this is heaven....more info
  • awesome
    This Lp is great great great !

    What a genius ! This LP sounds very similar to the "Momentary Lapse of Reason" Pink Floyd Album...
    ...more info
  • Watered down Floyd
    Well, it's not a bad album of music, but after listening to it about three or four times, I found it getting less and less interesting with every listen, instead of the other way around. I love David Gilmour's style of guitar playing, but this is not the best thing he's done. Still and all, it's worth a listen. Buy it used and save some $....more info
  • David Gets Marooned
    First off, I will try to avoid Floyd politicking for either Gilmour or Waters, or comparison to David's work with Floyd, by himself, or any other solo works by the Floyd. David has said that this is his most personal work, and therefore I will attempt to review it on its own merits.

    This album has a significant number of strengths, and I will try to give each of them their due. First, of course, David's abilities with a guitar are completely undiminished, and the riff on the title track, as well as that on "A Pocketful of Stones" rank right up there with "Comfortably Numb". Also, David does not limit his virtuosity to the guitar; he shows off his skills with a variety of other instruments such as saxophone and Hammond organ. He is complemented by an excellent array of guest musicians, among them one Richard Wright. To cap it off, "Island" is excellently produced and one feels transported to the island Dave's voice and guitar creates.

    However, for every great feature of this album, there is an even greater flaw. The first and foremost of these is the lyrics, most of which are credited to David's wife Polly Samson. They suffer from a lack of imagination (Take a breath/Take a deep breath now), pretentious romanticism (One day he'll slip away/Cool water flowing all around/In the river and on the ground) and sheer awkwardness (Let the night surround you...)

    Although the guitar, which is after all David's forte, flows smoothly, towards the end of the album it one gets the feeling that they've already heard that riff before. Also, one does not notice much the work of Wright and other session musicians, as their pieces tend to get processed into oblivion, possibly out of fear by David that he will be upstaged. Instead, he deprives the listener of great complements to what he calls his best work.

    The music itself is very soothing. Songs such as "The Blue" and "Then I Close My Eyes" are sooooooothing to the point that they make one want to close their eyes for quite a long time. This aural, New-Age sound David has embraced makes rockers such as "Take A Breath" forced and out of place. I wish I had more experience with New Age music, so I could take a stab at comparing it to its own genre.

    Now for the obligatory run-through of the different songs on the album. "Castellorizon" is a child of Dark Side of the Moon's "Speak To Me"; it samples all the upcoming songs, and does a quite good job of it at that. It merges flawlessly into the title track, which features an excellent melody and even more: some halfway decent lyrics. However, all the momentum Gilmour has built up is lost on "The Blue", which features the worst lyrics on the album (and that's saying a lot) as well as tiresome instrumentation that makes one drift off until woken up by the simply awful beat of "Take A Breath", which almost made this reviewer turn off the album in disgust. David slightly redeems himself on "Red Sky At Night", whose simple, pleasing sax lick is not ruined by Samson's lyrics. "This Heaven" has David expressing joy in the simple pleasures of life, yet he somehow makes it sound forced and overbearing. "Then I Close My Eyes" is another instrumental which features Gilmour using whatever doot-dooing is left over from live performances of "Wish You Were Here", although it doesn't keep the listener grooving quite like "Red Sky". Then it segues into "Smile" an acoustic song, which depending on the listener is either a simple love song or an over-sweet, unimaginative ballad. "A Pocketful of Stones" features some nifty guitar, yet the lyrics manage to sound like a positive spin put on a critique of Gilmor's personality by his rival Waters. "Where We Start" finishes the album with abysmal lyrics and guitar parts stolen from the title track.

    Overall, I found this album rather disappointing and unsatisfying. Whether you will like it depends on a few things: first of all, just how relaxed you like your music; those who rely on music to keep their blood pumping would be well advised to stay away. Floyd fans looking to this as the Next Best Thing to a reunion will be sorely disappointed as well. It's best if you lose all expectations you have before you get this album. I say give it a chance, whether you like it or not depends on just what kind of person you are....more info
  • Yet another moving, beautiful album from a great artist!
    I recently received my DVD of the Remember That Night concert which features the music from this album in its entirety along with many other great songs from David Gilmour/Pink Floyd. After viewing the DVD, I just had to order On An Island. In addition to this album, I highly recommend the DVD to all DG fans. It is as good as, if not better than, Pulse and far exceeded my expectations. The music from On An Island is excellent, and David's voice is as powerful and beautiful as it has ever been! I was happy to see David Gilmour looking so fit, energized, and happy. In fact, the entire cast seemed to be having a great time. Richard Wright played a prominent role in the concert, and it was great to see him looking well and enjoying himself. The new concert DVD differs immensely from the David Gilmour in Concert DVD from 2002. Remember That Night is a polished, high energy concert with great attention to detail and is a big production done more in the manner of Pulse. There is a tremendous amount of material on this 2-disk DVD set with some great footage of behind the scene material taken during their tour which was loads of fun. You will love both On and Island and the concert DVD....more info
  • 8.5/10
    Reviewgium - Volume I, issue XII

    Pink Floyd mainman David Gilmour returns with his third solo album, his first in over twenty years. Light a candle in the dark, lay back, let go of all your worries and burdens, and go to a place where life's hassles melt away and nothing matters except for the moment you are in. Full of pleasant soundscapes, textured instrumentation, and excellent vocal harmonies, On an Island can take you there if you just let it.

    The album starts with the atmospheric soundscape "Castellorizon," overlain with a melodic guitar solo and orchestration that flows gently into the title track, a harmonious triumph featuring guest appearances by David Crosby and Graham Nash. The elation continues on in the mystifying song "The Blue," which contains some truly melting lap steel soloing. The pace picks up a bit with "Take a Breath," with its simple yet entrancing acoustic guitar riff, giving an edge of adventure to this isolated getaway. "Red Sky at Night" is a saxophone-led segue that leads you placcidly into "This Heaven," a song which adds an element of fun and enjoyment to the journey. After you've had your fill of bread and wine with that someone special, sit back on your patio and let the pristine night air of "Then I Close My Eyes" and "Smile" take you even deeper into that carefree paradise you have found. "A Pocketful of Stones" is my definite favorite track. It starts off simple with an airy orchestration, easy piano melody and vocal line, but Gilmour's vocals just really reach a whole other level right about at the three-minute mark, and the song ends with a perfectly-placed guitar solo, making this one of the most gorgeous songs that has graced my ears in quite a while. As we know, good things do not last forever, but the final track "Where We Start" kind of gives you the spark of hope that maybe...just maybe...this will last forever. Maybe everything will be all right in the world. "We walk ourselves weary, just you and I, there's just this moment..."

    I'll get right to the point: David Gilmour sounds just as good vocally and on the guitar as he did 30 years ago. His vocals and guitarwork on this album just further the long-running fact that he is one of the greatest rock musicians that has ever been. Although the album may slightly remind one of Pink Floyd at times, it is obviously not as dark, gloomy, or mysterious. As opposed to the music typical of x-bandmate Roger Waters, who always seems to have a message to relay, there is no deep meaning or philosophy to anything in On and Island. And none is needed: it delivers exactly what it promises. There is also a special edition with a bonus song called "Island Jam" which is pretty much just that: an instrumental jam based on the other music of the album. It is a good compliment to the album, but not entirely necessary if you cannot find it. I recommend this album to anyone and everyone. Even to those people who think that everything about music needs to be complex and contain a deep message of some kind. Take a vacation from that for once, and enjoy the stripped-down beauty of this musical paradise. Light a candle in the dark, lay back, let go......more info
  • The closest thing we'll get to a new Pink Floyd album.
    Due to the untimely death of Richard Wright, there is next to no chance that there will a Pink Floyd reunion anytime soon. But don't fret, because David Gilmour's latest solo release, On An Island, will certainly quench the thirst for Pink Floyd fans old and new.

    The trademarks are all there: The reflective and emotional mood, breathy sound effects, special effects seguing into another track, and of course, the voice and powerful guitar solos of David Gilmour. But there are some tricks on this album that are anything but Floyd, such as the R&B flavored "This Heaven," which is the jazziest thing Gilmour's ever created.

    The album's first half is some of Gilmour's best work. The title track contains gorgeous harmonies by 2/3 of CS&N, The Blue feels like a dream, Take A Breath is reminiscent of The Wall-era Floyd, and tracks such as Red Sky At Night (with Gilmour on sax) and Then I Close My Eyes shows David in experimental mode, not afraid to change his personal style or his music.

    Unfortuantly, the last few songs fall flat. Smile is a little on the campy side, and A Pocketful Of Stones is incredibly dull, something you would hear on a later-era Moody Blues album. Where We Start picks up steam near the end, but one would feel that if he ditched the last 3 songs and wrote some stronger material with, say, Richard Wright, it would be a much more satisfying album.

    All complaints aside, On An Island is a very good album by a man who really doesn't need to prove himself anymore, and that's saying something. Reccomended for fans of The Division Bell, or any Floyd albums after Dark Side....more info
  • 6 stars for the Album and packaging
    The album is awesome. Period. And so is the packaging. And I add a sixth star for the packaging. I'll admit I picked this disc up in a big box store and did not realize that it was only cellophane wrapped until I opened it at home. No multiple razor blades, machetes, or dynamite needed to open and enjoy the disc. Any one who would like to replace the default packaging is sure to have several empty CD cases hanging around - or bum one from a friend. I have reached my wits end with wrestling with CD and DVD 'security packaging' to the point of asking store clerks to open them for me just to see their reaction....more info
  • David Gilmour sounds like the Pink of Old with maturity
    take a breath, take a deep breath now ... Gilmour is doing f**king yoga, man! Right on ! Like all of us getting older Pink fans who survived the drugs the alchohol (ok still surviving the alcohol and hoping for more decriminalizing of the Mary Jane substance) Gilmour still hits it right on. The spaciousness of the mix is undeniably Pink. Rant rant if you like about the seeming easy listening of this, but alot of Pink has been on the mellow side, so get over it and just dig this CD!...more info
  • David Gilmore
    What peeked my interest and my purchase of this album......I had heard the initial broadcast of David Gilmore on Satalite radio , by a station called " Classic Vinyl " . Where they feature an artist and an album .

    This particular station , actually played the entire album . And interviewed David and other band members between plays . Telling about the rhymes and reasons , behind the recording of this particular album . And some of his past experiences with " Pink Floyd " .

    I not only enjoyed the music on this album , but the time spent on the interview ....also . David Gilmore is a very personable kind of an artist.....! ...more info