One Slip (5:03)

Cover of Momentary Lapse of Reason

From Momentary Lapse of Reason and 12 other releases

There is an extraordinary story behind the song, “One Slip”. The first 20 seconds of the track contains the sound of an intruder trying to enter the access code to a burglar alarm which Dave Gilmour had arranged to be installed where he was recording the album. The studio recording includes several sets of high pitched beeps followed by the usual error tones and finally the number of incorrect attempts sets off the alarm.

The alarm panel used a Z80 microprocessor plus up to 64 smaller microprocessors to gather the data. It had a frequency divider chip to
make the beeps, error sounds and the loud sweeping alarm tone. The actual sounds were a bit off key because the alarm panel did not have perfect pitch! This just added more realism to the sound.

The multiplex alarm panel was unusual in that it could monitor 320 zones and was used in many “interesting places” throughout the world. Employees in the security industry recognised the sound and the song, “One Slip”, caused much excitement.

In 1984 Colin Palmer started to design the burglar alarm. Colin was working for Scantronic and Modern Alarms and suddenly he had a flash of inspiration and decided to add the musical sound effects to the product and he seemed to know that the sounds would be famous one day. It was still a surprise when he was told that Dave Gilmour had used it on the Momentary Lapse of Reason album in 1987.


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A restless eye across a weary room
A glazed look and I was on the road to ruin
The music played and played as we whirled without end
No hint, no word her honour to defendI will, I will she sighed to my request

MetroLyrics Full lyrics at MetroLyrics


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  • bytor4232

    Damn genius song

    15 Apr 5:07pm Reply
  • JohnnyMath

    This songs is not Psychedelic rock Its like a u2 song

    10 Oct 2013 Reply
  • mik4eri

    Was it love or was it the idea of being in love? оh my God [3]

    26 Jun 2013 Reply
  • citruscorp

    this would be a lot easier to enjoy if david gilmour didnt rhyme "desire" with "funeral pyre" id take waters asking thatcher angry rhetorical questions over this any day

    2 Jun 2013 Reply
  • Ennish

    I adore the chord changes in this song.

    14 Dec 2012 Reply
  • Ultra_DM_

    Влюбилась в эту песню с первого прослушивания))

    29 Apr 2012 Reply
  • xXPyrophorusXx

    My fave on the Waters-less version of Floyd. It wasn't a bad album, but also quite different.

    23 Apr 2012 Reply
  • andy517

    Was it love or was it the idea of being in love? оh my God [2]

    2 Mar 2012 Reply
  • reagan0

    I've been listening to the Floyd since Piper, and have just about everything PF released, except Final Cut, and I have to say, this album is in my top 3 favorites, behind Meddle, and Wish You Were Here. And "One Slip" is my favorite track on this album.

    24 Feb 2012 Reply
  • efekok

    there aren't any "worst" pink floyd albums. all of their albums have different characters. so its not for you. for example, i really dont like the final cut in the other hand a momentary lapse of reason is a good album for me...

    10 Jan 2012 Reply

    Endless debate I know, but I reckon this is the Floyd's worst album. Nothing to do with Roger not being there (Division Bell is great), it's just not a very good album. If it hand't been branded 'Pink Floyd' it would have slipped into obscurity.

    25 Nov 2011 Reply
  • liquidvizions

    i prefer the roger waters era floyd but they did just fine without him. besides... some of his solo stuff is horrendus. while some is quite brilliant. but overall... pink floyd released better music without him then he did without them.

    11 Nov 2011 Reply
  • mrfinsky327

    I will admit that I really like Dark Side of the Moon, The Wall, and other PF albums. However, the only PF album that really hits hard is Wish You Were Here. The personal interest makes that the essential PF album.

    10 Nov 2011 Reply
  • boooyouwhores

    Our souls were on fire.

    31 Aug 2011 Reply
  • maphilli14

    They say this isn't a themed or concept album, but it's still deep, well written and subtle in meanings, this song too! I'm reminded of the small decisions we all make and how the consequences add up to major life changes!

    30 Aug 2011 Reply
  • deepest_sleep

    drowning desire, our souls are on fire! uhhh what a song. but this sounds more like progressive, which is not good

    7 Aug 2011 Reply
  • AkselJ

    Is it just me, or does this very much resemble the style of Dire Straits?

    18 May 2011 Reply
  • sco703

    What a great song.

    25 Apr 2011 Reply
  • therealsteppen

    Great track!!!! ;-)

    11 Jan 2011 Reply
  • rafaelnc

    There'll be no sleeping here tonight.

    11 Jan 2011 Reply
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