Various Artists – Re-Building The Wall Review

Various Artists - Re-Building The Wall

Various Artists - Re-Building The Wall

Re-Building The Wall is a compilation CD of specifically recorded covers of all the tracks on Pink Floyd’s classic 1979 album The Wall, arranged in correct running order. It was produced by Billy Sherwood (of Yes fame) and released in 2007, although the first disc was also released under the title ‘Back Against The Wall,’ in 2005.

Rather than a specific band covering each song, a whole host of musicians from the world of Prog, AOR and classic rock play bit parts on different songs and largely do their best to imitate the original versions exactly with only a few exceptions, for example Ian Anderson does add a little touch of Flute to On Thin Ice and Steve Morse adds a lot of guitar to Another Brick In The Wall Part 1 that wasn’t there before. While some can add their own feel to drum fills, guitar solos or vocal lines however, it is usually a pretty faithful representation of the original.

This set is worth some interest to Prog fans; mostly just out of curiosity, but isn’t going to amaze anyone beyond that point. The Wall is so distinct and memorable that often you will just be sat there noticing what is incorrect with this version, or how this musician doesn’t ‘feel right.’

If you enjoyed the musician swapping and different flavours found on Roger Waters’ The Wall Live In Berlin, then this may be of more interest to you of course, but otherwise it just seems a little pointless.

The following is a list of the artists who perform on the album and which band they come from (This is a broad outline, keep in mind that some of them have been solo artists or in multiple bands too):

Alan White, Chris Squire, Steve Howe, Rick Wakeman, Tony Kaye, Geoff Downes and Billy Sherewood of Yes.
Tony Levin, Adrien Belew and John Wetton of King Crimson.
Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull.
Garry Green of Gentle Giant.
Keith Emerson of ELP.
Larry Fast of Nektar.
Steve Morse and Glenn Hughes of Deep Purple.
Robby Kreiger of The Doors.
Tommy Shaw of Styx.
Steve Lukather of Toto.
Ronnie Montrose of Montrose.
Fey Wayhill of Tubes.
Elliot Easton of The Cars.
Vinny Colaitua
Dweezle Zappa
Malcom McDowell
and finally Jim Ladd… who was the radio DJ from Roger Waters’ Radio KAOS album.

Be aware however that some only perform on one or two tracks so it mightn’t be worth your time buying the set if you only like one of the artists involved.

Overall, Re-Building The Wall is an interesting if somewhat unessential curiosity piece for fans of the record or associated Prog, Rock and AOR artists that has some good moments but isn’t as cohesive and dynamic as the original album.

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