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The Drift

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iTunes Review

Scott Walker is the ultimate stranger in a strange land. Born Scott Engel in Hamilton, Ohio, he became a UK pop star with the Walker Brothers in the 1960s, sported a solo career where he was described as sounding like “Tony Bennett on acid,” and in the past eleven years has released just two solo albums – this one and 1995’s Tilt. Both are challenging works that require the listener to suspend their beliefs in what a song should do. You do not hum these tunes. You do not tap your foot to these beats. Preferably, you sit in a comfortable chair in a dark room and let the slowly unfolding drama overtake you. The Drift is the mesmerizing sound of the apocalypse oozing down the walls around you. Walker employs sparse orchestration and much of the album is spent in silence, awaiting Walker’s tremulous proclamations. One doesn’t walk away from The Drift with a favorite track, but with a memory for repeated phrases that have been painstakingly beaten into consciousness: “I’m the only one left alive,” “I’ll punch a donkey in the streets of Galway,” “World about to end.” Careful with this one.

Customer Reviews


I am amused by a previous review that said that The Drift makes Tilt sound like Ashlee Simpson. It reminds me of a review I once read that opined that Springsteen's The Ghost of Tom Joad made Nebraska sound like James Brown Live at the Apollo. Lacking the Jacques Brel covers that actually made Tilt somewhat accessible, The Drift is the aural equivalent of root canal: essential and ultimately rewarding but not really enjoyable. Like the early novels of Thomas Pynchon, Scott Walker's records are more to be admired than enjoyed. I respect Walker's vision, but to be quite honest, I can't say that I am quite up to the investment of repeated listenings.

Genius at work!

Scott has excelled on every level this time around. Much in the same vein as 1995's Tilt yet far more distracted and inaccessible. Sheer brilliance. This album is a 14 hour jet flight for those that are scared of flying. I cannot stop listening to it. Thank you Scott.

Pretty badass

It's not exactly accessible, and if you need music hand fed to you with a catchy beat and simplistic chorus you will hate it. However, if you can deal with something that is experimental, original, and intriguing, then this album is a must. It’s like the Blue Velvet of the music world: unorthodox and disturbing, but ultimately rewarding.


Born: January 9, 1943 in Hamilton, OH

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

One of the most enigmatic figures in rock history, Scott Walker was known as Scotty Engel when he cut obscure flop records in the late '50s and early '60s in the teen idol vein. He then hooked up with John Maus and Gary Leeds to form the Walker Brothers. They weren't named Walker, they weren't brothers, and they weren't English, but they nevertheless became a part of the British Invasion after moving to the U.K. in 1965. They enjoyed a couple of years of massive success there (and a couple of hits...
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