close your eyes
 
[music, albums]

XL: 1973 Pink Floyd - Dark Side of the Moon


Pink Floyd - Dark Side of the Moon

The famous untitled cover picturing a light beam hitting a prism and being dispersed into a spectrum, many beams in the different colours of the rainbow. One of the more astonishing experiments in physics showing that white light is a mixture of different frequencies which can be visualised as the spectral colours.

I listened to this album for the first time in 1975, I guess, probably in November. Chez my best friend. In his room under the roof with the oversized drawing of Che Guevara's face on the wall. He was the handsome good-looking guy the girls liked. I was the outsider who was into chess and other stuff girls were not interested at all in. It was dark in his room when he put the record on. I didn't know about concept albums or anything but the music really hit me. It wasn't like anything I had heard and liked before like Abba, the Bee Gees, the Sweet etc. There was something universal about it. Until a couple of years ago I had never thought about DSotM as having different songs. It was just one song with different parts segueing seamlessly into another. I didn't understand what this album was about but I felt that it was something special, something bigger than life.

The cry which starts Speak to Me Breathe. A song which can make you forget everything bad about this world. The tenderness, the love, Dave Gilmour's guitar. When they started their Live8 performance this year with this song I could hardly hold back my tears. This was the better part of my youth, fuck.

The dooming atmosphere of the beginning of Time preshadowing goth. Turning into something quite funky, with those background girls vocals, I usually hate but which make sense to me here. As they are only used as an element, they are just an extra flavour which give the song some extra life.

The Great Gig in the Sky has more of this kind of women's singing. It's soulish stuff, it's great.

The sound of cash registers bring us back to profanity. Money. Considering that this is supposed to be the second best selling album of all-time (see Wikipedia) there is a lot of ex-post irony hanging around here. Played to death, but still an amazing song. The saxophone is reaching for some incredible heights. That tremolo! And the guitar as well. Like Santana but better. I can't imagine a cover of this which could convince me.

Us Against Them. Apparently the longest track. The saxophone again. Fitting perfectly. Isn't this song about a fight? So calm and sovereign.

A prog-rock piece follows. Okay in the course of things.

And then we have Brain Damage. That must refer to Syd Barrett. He didn't make it to the stardom of Pink Floyd. But he is looming there, in the background. How to cope with losing the main band member. Pink Floyd and Joy Division. Two of the most important bands in rock music.

Further Reading

This was the concluding post of the the series 40 years, 40 albums.


 





 
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