Written in 1985, following his girlfriend's inquiry of whether it was difficult to write a song, "The Whole of the Moon" pays homage to those who had affected Mike Scott's artistic growth, ranging from Prince to Irish writer C.S. Lewis. Scott has never been one to conceal his passion and intensity, and "The Whole of the Moon" is no exception. Anthemic, earnest, and fervently poetic, the song is the perfect portrait of Mike Scott as an artist, as well as of his self-proclaimed "big music." Here he conveys both inspiration and humility amidst an everything-but-the-kitchen-sink arrangement, though the song is strong enough to withstand the barrage. With every instrument that appears, Scott digs ever deeper, trying to capture even a piece of the vision he found in the work of the artists who inspired him. By the end, Scott, enveloped in a burst of voices, instruments, and even a gunshot, seems to be no longer able to contain himself, firing off image after image in their honor. "The Whole of the Moon" is part paean, part yearning, and part declaration of the soul. The bold musical feel of the song and the corresponding album, This Is the Sea, subsequently gave way to a more traditional flavor with their next two recordings, Fisherman's Blues and Room to Roam.