Fans of Pink Floyd were shocked to learn that after a 20-year hiatus, the band would be releasing a brand new album. The LP is called The Endless River and the album cover art has already been released.
But an even more unusual bit of Pink Floyd news has been hitting the web today. Famous scientist Stephen Hawking will be lending his voice to the Pink Floyd record. According to Techly, Stephen Hawking’s electronic computer voice will be featured on the song “Talkin’ Hawkin.” While it is strange to feature the artificial voice of one of the world’s most celebrated theoretical physicists in a song, Pink Floyd has actually used Stephen Hawking’s voice in a recording before. The 1994 Pink Floyd song “Keep Talking” used samples of Hawking’s synthesized voice from a BT television commercial. Pink Floyd used the following quotation:
“For millions of years, mankind lived just like the animals. Then something happened which unleashed the power of our imagination.”
According to the Economic Times, this will be the very last Pink Floyd record. Lead singer and guitarist David Gilmour is dedicating the final Pink Floyd LP to the band’s keyboardist, Rick Wright, who passed away in 2008. Pink Floyd was founded by Wright, Syd Barrett, Roger Waters and Nick Mason.
Even stranger than featuring the voice of Stephen Hawking, the song credits for Pink Floyd’s The Endless River actually include Rick Wright’s name, even though he’s been gone for years. The credits seem to be a tribute to Wright’s memory more than an accurate representation of Pink Floyd’s creative force. A statement on Roger Waters’ Facebook page suggested that neither he nor Rick Wright have anything to do with the new Pink Floyd album.
“David Gilmour and Nick Mason have an album coming out. It’s called Endless River. David and Nick constitute the group Pink Floyd. I on the other hand, am not part of Pink Floyd. I left Pink Floyd in 1985, that’s 29 years ago.”
However, The Daily Mail claims most of the new Pink Floyd tracks were taken from 1994’s The Division Bell sessions, which were co-written by Rick Wright.
Gilmour had this to say about the release of the new Pink Floyd record, which will be available on November 7:
“Over the last year we’ve added new parts, rerecorded others and generally harnessed studio technology to make a 21st century Pink Floyd album. With Rick gone, and with him the chance of ever doing it again, it feels right that these revisited and reworked tracks should be made available as part of our repertoire.”
Another unfortunate passing of a talented keyboardist took place this week when Isaiah “Ikey” Owens, Jack White’s keyboardist, died of a heart attack in his Mexico hotel.