The Drift  

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"In both composition and atmosphere, The Drift was a continuation of the surreal, menacing, partially abstract approach displayed on Climate of Hunter and Tilt. It featured jarring contrasts between loud and quiet sections; instrumentation was similar to Tilt in the use of rock instruments and a large orchestra, but the album also interpolated unnerving sound effects such as the distressed braying of a donkey, a demoniac Donald Duck impression, and (during a recording sequence captured on film) an orchestral percussionist punching a large cut of raw meat. Lyrical subjects included torture, disease, the relationship and eventual shared death of Mussolini and his mistress Clara Petacci, and a conflation of the 9/11 attacks with a nightmare shared by Elvis Presley and his dead twin brother Jesse."

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Drift is the thirteenth studio album by the American solo artist Scott Walker. It was released on the 8 May 2006 and reached number 51 on the UK Albums Chart. No singles were released from the album. Apart from composing the soundtrack to the film Pola X, the album was Walker's first studio album in eleven years and only his third studio album since the final disbanding of The Walker Brothers in 1978.

Walker composed the songs for the album slowly over the decade after the release of 1995's Tilt, beginning with "Cue" (the longest song to complete), up until the album's recording. An early version of "Buzzers" was premièred at the Meltdown festival on 17 June 2000 under the title "Thimble Rigging". The album was recorded over a period of 17 months at Metropolis Studios in Chiswick, London, with orchestra recorded in one day at George Martin's AIR Studios in Hampstead, London. Receiving good reviews from critics, the album was released as an LP and CD in May 2006. The artwork for the album was designed by Vaughan Oliver at v23 with assistance from Chris Bigg and photography by Marc Atkins.

Track listing

| all_writing = Scott Walker, except "Psoriatic" (Scott Walker/Bob Carleton) | title1 = Cossacks Are | length1 = 4:32 | title2 = Clara | length2 = 12:43 | title3 = Jesse | length3 = 6:28 | title4 = Jolson and Jones | length4 = 7:45 | title5 = Cue | length5 = 10:27 | title6 = Hand Me Ups | length6 = 5:49 | title7 = Buzzers | length7 = 6:39 | title8 = Psoriatic | length8 = 5:51 | title9 = The Escape | length9 = 5:18 | title10 = A Lover Loves | length10 = 3:11 }}

Overview

Walker's first album composed entirely of new material since 1995's Tilt, The Drift forms the second installment of the "trilogy" that concluded with 2012's Bish Bosch. In the years between Tilt and The Drift, Walker's released output comprised a few instrumental tracks on the soundtrack to the film Pola X, a cover of Bob Dylan's "I Threw It All Away" on the To Have and to Hold soundtrack, and "Only Myself to Blame" from The World Is Not Enough soundtrack, as well as a few compilations of previously released material, including the retrospective box set 5 Easy Pieces.

The Drift has been cited by many critics and fans alike as a disturbing and complex album that departs from Scott Walker's previous albums while still remaining true to his experimental roots. French singer Vanessa Contenay-Quinones appears as the voice of Clara Petacci on "Clara".

The sound and subject matter for the album is unrelentingly dark and unsettling, often juxtaposing quiet sections with sudden loud noise to induce discomfort in the listener. Subjects include torture, disease, 9/11, Elvis Presley (and his stillborn twin brother Jesse Garon Presley), and Srebrenica.


David Toop essay

"Silence, cooked like Gold in charred hands" (2012) is an essay by David Toop for No Regrets: Writings On Scott Walker (2012) edited by Rob Young. Its title is a line from "Alchemical" [Chymisch], another poem in Paul Celan's collection Die Niemandsrose.



Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "The Drift" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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