Pink Floyd were onto something as they continued working on 1973’s The Dark Side of the Moon but they didn’t have an ending.
They continued tinkering with things even after a first live run-through of the album was cut short by technical issues.
Dark Side of the Moon had already found a focus on a variety of worries including money, aging, mental illness and death.
As the sole lyricist for this material, Waters wanted to examine how the struggles in Pink Floyd’s newest tunes were universal among all human beings.
“There are a number of things that impinge upon an individual that color his view of existence,” Waters told Classic Albums. “There are pressures that are capable of pushing you in one direction or another, and these are some of them.”
Still, something was clearly missing.
“I suggested it all needed an ending,” Waters told Uncut. “I wrote ‘Eclipse’ and brought it into a gig in Colston Hall in Bristol, on a piece of lined paper with the lyrics written out.”
Except the closing song wasn’t called 'Eclipse' at that point. The closing song was called 'Dark Side of the Moon' - due to the fact, Medicine Head were releasing an LP that was also called 'Dark Side of the Moon' but the Medicine Head album flopped and Pink Floyd then changed the name of their album back to 'Dark Side of the Moon'.
'Eclipse' then became the name of a short song which was titled as “End.”
Roger Waters wrote the entirety of the music and lyrics, and also chose to sing lead on the track.
Pink Floyd worked together to make 'Eclipse' as much of a musical climax as a thematic one.
“I remember working hard on making it build and adding harmonies that join in as you go through the song,” Gilmour told Rolling Stone. “Because there’s nothing to it: There’s no chorus, there’s no middle eight; there’s just a straight list. So, every four lines, we’ll do something different.”
The guitarist also chimed in on harmonies, as did Lesley Duncan, Doris Troy, Barry St. John and Liza Strike.
After 'Eclipse' is brought to a crashing conclusion, the track runs for another 41 seconds. Listeners hear the sound of a fading pulse, actually a processed kick drum that also begins the album, making The Dark Side of the Moon into a motif of life and death.