There are fans of Pink Floyd who will argue that once Roger Waters left, the band ceased to be (and Waters certainly wouldn’t have disagreed in the past). While 1987’s A Momentary Lapse of Reason can easily be regarded as a solo album by David Gilmour in all but name, the beauty of Gilmour’s 2006 release, On an Island, was that it didn’t have the baggage that the Floyd name carries with it — expectations are somewhat different for a Gilmour solo release, and so, ironically, it allows the listener to draw the conclusion that, indeed, Gilmour is as much Pink Floyd as Waters ever was.
Remember That Night, Gilmour’s new live DVD and companion piece to On an Island, benefits in the same way. Firstly, Gilmour is joined on stage by Floyd founding member Rick Wright, so you’ve already got somewhere between 40-66% of the band there (depending on your perspective). Secondly, the staging, while spectacular, is much more intimate than the overblown PULSE setup: there are no flying pigs, no giant video screens and no flash pots. Instead, we’re treated to an evening of Pink Floyd classics and the entirety of On an Island performed live.
The highlights of the first disc are the performances of “Echoes” (all 20+ minutes of it) and a stripped-down “Shine On You Crazy Diamond”, but the biggest treat is seeing David Bowie alongside Gilmour for “Comfortably Numb” and “Arnold Layne”, the latter fitting Bowie’s style amazingly well. (Having Roxy Music’s Phil Manzanera along for the entire ride is just icing on the cake.)
The second disc fills out the selection with bonus tracks and promo videos, but there’s one particular surprise on the tour documentary Breaking Bread, Drinking Wine that I won’t spoil except to say that it’s both awkward and touching at the same time.
In short, any Pink Floyd fan should pick up this DVD ASAP. And if you haven’t heard Gilmour’s On an Island yet, buy that, too. This is music too good to go unnoticed.