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  1. #76
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    Wait till we get to Ummagumma...

    To be fair there's still days and days left before we get to More. Loads of time for people to tell us that Corporal Clegg is a moderately listenable tune! (the fools)
    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

  2. #77
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    "Corporal Clegg" is rubbish and we all know it.

    Seriously now there are still a few albums I never bought. More" is one of them, mainly because I never used to see it as a 'real' studio album, and "Ummagumma" is another. It has a very good cover though! I do wonder whether I can live without them. I mean, are they worth me spending 20-odd quid on? I don't have much after "The Wall" either, except one attrocious album (I'll keep you in suspense and not reveal which one yet! )
    The most recent Floyd album I bought (but not the newest release) was "Atom Heart Mother" which I'd always admired from afar simply because of its wonderful cow cover. When I first got to listen to it my first reaction was, "what the f- ??!" (but I'm getting ahead of myself! )

    One interesting observation over the years (and I might be wrong here) is that if you got into Waters/gilmour Floyd first then you're not very likely to bother with "Piper" or other early stuff. If you got into Barrett era first then you're more open to their later incarnation. A big generalisation of course.
    I might be wrong...but I do remember some house party in the mid '90s where some stoned young lad was banging on about how much he loved Pink Floyd and that he wanted some on the stereo. I mentioned my favourite stuff was with Syd Barrett and he looked at me like I was speaking in Swaheli. He didn't know of any Floyd album prior to "Dark side of the Moon". Yeah, big fan then...

  3. #78
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    Yep, it's often annoyed me over the years, people who have said something along the lines of "Oh yeah, I LOVE Pink Floyd - but I don't really like the early stuff." Not only are they missing out some quite wonderful music from that era, but it also implies that everything they produced after Syd left sounds the same, which simply isn't the case. 'Piper' sounds nothing like 'Atom Heart Mother' (for instance), which sounds nothing like 'The Dark Side Of The Moon', which in turn sounds nothing like 'The Wall', which itself sounds nothing like 'The Division Bell'. One of the great things about this remarkable band is how their sound has changed over the years, and although I totally appreciate that not everybody is going to like everything, it seems, to me, somewhat blinkered to dismiss one comparatively short period of the group's career in favour of the rest of their output, and, in so doing, dismiss the variety and the development which Pink Floyd underwent.

  4. #79
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    But then people are HUGE fans of Dark Side of The Moon... perhaps they should say so! I have got a hold of a lot of Pink Floyd over the past few months and I am really glad that I did. I think (think!) I prefer the Dave Gilmour stuff after the 70's, but I am also very fond of Meddle and Atom Heart Mother looks like being a big hit too.

    The earlier stuff... I find heavy going, but very rewarding! The problem is that there's a dilemma in the songwriting between 'Pop!' songs and the more experimental stuff. Piper could be a charming, quirky pop album, but Interstellar Overdrive and Pow R Toc H kind of throw it askew.

    I've just started listening to Ummagumma - yes, there'll be lots of say about this!
    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

  5. #80
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    Saucerful of Secrets
    Before I begin, I just out to say that I've been procrastinating a bit on this.
    You see, having spent the later half of last week with tunes like Bike, The Scarecrow and The Gnome in my head, if I had to review The Piper at the Gates of Dawn now, I'd probably like it more than I did last week. Weird huh.

    Anyway, back on track: for me this album this album is mainly typical 60's sound like The Beatles with the infrequent the Pink Floyd experimental sound.

    Let There be More Light
    A 60's sound piece.
    This is growing on me; especially with the guitar riff .

    Remember a Day
    A 60's sound piece.
    I quite like this one. I fully expect to be whistling the tune for the next few days .
    I like the piano bits

    Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun
    A 60's sound piece.
    I like the melody; it has a slightly Eastern quality to it.

    Corporal Clegg
    A 60's sound piece.
    I'm sure there's a message about war in here somewhere, but I'm not going to find the lyrics to confirm that.
    It's hard for me to actively listen to it, as my mind keep tuning out from it (sometimes tuning out of this pieces is a good thing!)

    A Saucerful of Secrets
    An instrumental/experimental piece.
    Weird. Eclectic. The sort of thing John Peel would have played on his Radio 1 show .
    Not typically the sort of thing I'd listen to, more the type of piece I'd have on as background music as I was doing something.

    See-Saw
    A 60's sound piece.
    Not particularly capturing, but quite listen-able when my conscious mind does tune into it.

    Jugband Blues
    A 60's sound piece blended into an instrumental/experimental piece.
    A bit too sing-song-y for me, the trumpets at 1:06 almost save the piece.
    At 1:40 it just goes too weird for me. The guitar and vocals from 2:30 don't make any sense to me.

    Conclusion
    In order to listen to Pink Floyd I have to make a mental shift (no drugs required though!). This is not the usual dance music I listen to and it requires a different state of mind in order to get the best out of it.

    If, in five years time, I came back to this and the other Pink Floyd albums, I'm sure I would pick them up and listen to them one after the other and see how differently I would take to them.
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  6. #81
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    Default The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn

    Well, I've realised that I just simply haven't got the time to write the more extensive reviews I wanted to, unfortunately, and, as you can see, I've already fallen way behind! I am hoping to expand on my reviews for a side project, possibly to come in the New Year - watch this space. In the meantime, I'll try to write more personal reviews, with a few memories of my first Floyd experiences, and, hopefully, depsite being very familiar with the band's output, a fresh approach, having deliberately not lisetened to many of these albums for some time. Having said all that, this review took me far longer than I was planning!

    So, without further ado, let's backtrack again, to 1967...

    THE PIPER AT THE GATES OF DAWN

    Columbia SCX 6157 (stereo), SX 6157 (mono)
    Released 5 August 1967 (UK); 24 July 1967 (US, Tower Records (S)T 5093)
    Date of UK Chart Entry: 22 June 1967
    Highest UK Chart Position: 6 (14 weeks on chart)
    Highest US Chart Position: 131


    Syd Barrett - Lead Guitar & Vocals
    Roger Waters - Bass Guitar & Vocals
    Rick Wright - Organ/Piano
    Nicky Mason - Drums

    Produced by: Norman Smith
    Recording Engineer: Peter Bown
    Front Cover Photo: Vic Singh
    Rear Cover Design: Syd Barrett

    SIDE ONE

    1. ASTRONOMY DOMINE (Barrett) 4.12

    What a stunning opener, and a wonderful start to the Floyd's album career. When I first heard this track, almost eighteen years ago, I thought I was au fait with the Pink Floyd sound, having been fully educated in those core texts, The Dark Side Of The Moon, Wish You Were Here and The Wall - the intro of Astronomy Domine, with its echoing, megaphone-filtered voices, chugging guitar and booming tom-toms changed that. This was certainly not the Floyd I had got used to over the previous year since I'd first started discovering the band, and, key to that, was Barrett's unusual vocal and guitar styles. I now know this as quintessential early Floyd, but this, to me, was a different band; listening to the album, though, I soon found them utterly captivating. Most captivating of all is this glorious space-rocker, which, alongside See Emily Play, is perhaps the finest example of Barrett-era Pink Floyd. Its structure is an unusual one, particularly in its arresting stop-start instrumental, enhanced by soaring, other-worldly guitars, building up to a cacophonous crescendo of echoes, warbles and wails - the listener truly feels as if he is being taken on a psychedelic journey into space - a journey which, for Pink Floyd, would last for nearly forty years. Amazing.

    2. LUCIFER SAM (Barrett) 3.07

    With its slightly menacing, R 'n' B-tinged guitar and rhythms, this is another great track, and sees Barrett in a darkly playful mood ("Jennifer Gentle you're a witch", in reference to a former girlfriend). Mentions of a "hip cat" date the song somewhat, but the innovative sounds, as ever, still make it sound fresh, particularly that bizarre lead guitar sound during the instrumental - as yet, this is so far removed from the Gilmour sound, I'm still not sure I'm listening to the same band. Of course, in many ways, I'm not.

    3. MATILDA MOTHER (Barrett) 3.08

    Another sublimely surreal number, this time with Rick Wright taking lead vocals, the organist also delivering a much more unsettling 'Turkish Delight' lick. Of course, this is still very much Barrett's showcase, and Syd returns during the choruses and at the climax to take the spotlight on this rather personal insight into childhood nursery room fears. It's interesting to note that even this early on, and having a very definite (if very reluctant) leader in Syd Barrett, the band are sharing vocal duties, and, indeed, making very innovative use of their voices. Three songs in, and I'm hooked on this record.

    4. FLAMING (Barrett) 2.46

    Much lighter and more whimsical than the three tracks preceding it, Flaming is perhaps the weakest - and possibly most dated - song so far, but this curious fairytale number is still colourful enough to make its mark. Despite its few flaws, I've always found it a catchy number, and I still have a soft spot for it.

    5. POW R. TOC H. (Barrett-Waters-Wright-Mason) 4.26

    Just when you think you're getting to know this original Pink Floyd, along comes this curious 'instrumental', opening with strange, animal-like noises, before settling into an unlikely coupling of jazz piano and jungle drums. Once again, Barrett, Wright and Waters use their voices imaginatively, almost as another instrument - an early indication, perhaps, of the band's desire to explore sonic possibilities. Although things go a little crazy midway through, and at the end, this is a wonderfully structured and disciplined piece, and one of the more accurate examples of The Pink Floyd's live show at that time. Although initially unsure what to make of this track, I now find it one of the most intriguing on the album.

    6. TAKE UP THY STETHOSCOPE AND WALK (Waters) 3.07

    Roger Waters' first sole writing credit is this rather disposable rhythm and blues jam, the only notable aspects being some great instrumental sparring between Wright and Barrett (although the keyboards do date the track terribly) and frantic drumming from Mason, who appears to be in his element here. As a Waters song, there is a typically dark edge, even at this early stage, but there is little to note about the song.

    Last edited by Dave Tudor; 4th Dec 2008 at 10:05 PM.

  7. #82
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    Default The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn


    SIDE TWO

    1. INTERSTELLAR OVERDRIVE (Barrett-Waters-Wright-Mason) 9.42

    OK, so I'm halfway through the album, and, flipping over to the second side, despite all I've heard so far, I'm still somehow expecting this to be a more mellow, more typically Floydian epic song, something akin to their mid-70's pomp - how wrong can I be? The track which is perhaps most representative of 1967 vintage live Pink Floyd, this nine-minute space-rock freak-out is out of this world in every sense. Opening with one of the most familiar early Floyd riffs (alleged to have been a rip-off of the Steptoe And Son theme!), the track quickly takes flight, Syd, Roger, Rick and Nick improvising for all their worth as they take us on an crazy instrumental trip across the galaxy, accompanied by various bleeps and squeaks and bangs and crashes and even the odd blues lick. Any studio version of Interstellar Overdrive is almost inevitably going to be restricted by the confines of vinyl, but this appears to give a fair impression of the underground darlings at the height of their powers. Despite the apparent free-style approach, there is a certain structure and tightness about the track, which is not surprising, really, considering that by now, the band had been performing this number, night after night, for nearly a year. At just under ten minutes long, this is quite conservative for Interstellar Overdrive (live performances could last for anything up to half an hour, or even longer) but in retrospect, it can be seen as the first of many extended experimental pieces which would lead to much more ambitious works. The ending is simply tremendous, that riff bouncing between the speakers in mind-blowing fashion. This is a brave track to put on record at all, and heaven knows what the casual listener must have made of this in 1967, let alone the turned-on, tuned-in space cadet, but it must be considered a success, and a true early Pink Floyd classic.

    2. THE GNOME (Barrett) 2.13

    Coming back down to (Middle) Earth, we see that Barrett is still well and truly away with the fairies. Another whimsical offering, this is the first of a trio of more laid-back tracks which counterpoint the way-out experimentalism of the more familiar space jams. The Gnome displays a softer, more acoustic side to Barrett's work, which would become more apparent on his two solo outings, and, although slightly potty and strictly of its time, it is nevertheless charming.

    3. CHAPTER 24 (Barrett) 3.42

    With words lifted almost directly from the I Ching, the Chinese Book of Changes, Chapter 24 sees Barrett in mystical, philosophical mood. It's a striking track, with rather sparse instrumentation, and it's interesting to note an almost folky flavour, as in the next track. This number must be now quite far removed from the underground sounds with which the band were associated, but it is one of the more mature, disciplined songs on the album's second side.

    4. THE SCARECROW (Barrett) 2.10

    Despite gaining a definite article, The Scarecrow is the same recording which appeared on the B-side to See Emily Play, but here, it sits more favourably with the pastoral-tinged tracks preceding it, further emphasising the Floyd's versatility. Although never a real favourite of mine, it does retain a certain individuality, and its harmonies and acoustic sensibilities represent an indication of many more rural odes which would appear in the band?s repertoire over the coming years.

    5. BIKE (Barrett) 3.22

    Finally... this. I'd heard about Bike some time before I eventually got to listen to it, but even then, I did not quite know what to expect. It's mad, erratic, crazy, downright bonkers, even, but it's utterly brilliant. It's undoubtedly that bizarre sound collage which closes the album which makes one go "What the f***!?!??", but the song is really rather charming, curiously naive and childlike, yet with hidden depths and fears present. The band hold it together beautifully, to the point where they could almost be said to be having fun - not something you would normally associate with Pink Floyd! For some, it might be rather annoying musically, but I think Bike is glorious, and it balances precariously on that fine line between madness and genius. As it collapses into a cacophony of chiming clocks and gaggling geese, one is left wondering how many listeners this must have freaked out in its time, but make no mistake, right from the start, The Pink Floyd are pushing back the barriers of sound design. But this is not truly representative of the band at this point - Bike is Syd Barrett in a nutshell, and few songs capture the brilliance and the madness so perfectly. A frighteningly bizarre but fantastic ending to a unique album.


    A wonderful, beguiling, puzzling, and often daunting album, The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn is like no other Pink Floyd produced - which is a good thing, really, as I don't think they would have had such enormous success if they had continued to make records like this. As a one-off, though, a record of a particular time and place, it's unsurpassable. Its underground roots means that it presents a less sanitised picture of the British psychedelic scene than, say Sgt. Pepper. It retains a rawness and vitality, akin to Are You Experienced? yet boasts excellent production values. It is testament to producer Norman Smith, then, despite what some contemporaries may have thought of him, that he manages to create such a good sound design without sacrificing the integrity of the band - although one wonders what Joe Boyd would have made out of this material. Piper has usually regarded as Syd's album, and yes, he is without the guiding light here, but I think it's a superb group effort, moreso than many later Floyd albums, and there is a certain dynamic spark and hunger here which only debut albums can display - as debuts go, The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn is one of THE very best.



    The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn - 4.5 out of 5
    Last edited by Dave Tudor; 4th Dec 2008 at 11:20 PM.

  8. #83
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    What's your score, Dave? Go on, give "Piper" a 5 out of 5!

  9. #84
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    On Radio 1 this morning at 8:50, they had Aled review "Dark Side of the Moon"
    I will try and get some audio of this ...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carol Baynes View Post
    What's your score, Dave? Go on, give "Piper" a 5 out of 5!
    Well, almost, Carol! Though personally I'd give it 9 out of 10 (that's just me!), as, although it's a great album, and unique in every way, I don't regard it as a perfect album, so it just misses out on top marks.

  11. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil L View Post
    On Radio 1 this morning at 8:50, they had Aled review "Dark Side of the Moon"
    I will try and get some audio of this ...
    Through the magic of the internet I present you with Aled Jones' review of Dark Side of the Moon:
    http://www.philipnet.com/files/Aled_(Radio1)_reviews_Dark_Side_of_the_Moon.mp3

    I appreciate that this is somewhat advanced for this thread, but it had me cracking up in the car this morning.

    It's just over 6 minutes long; the slightly gruff voice is Jeremy Clarkson who was being interviewed by the host, Chris Moyles, during the show.

    Enjoy!
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  12. #87
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    A Saucerful of Secrets

    This is another one that's new to me and again I've come away with an unsure feeling about it. Parts of it are really verey good, but others seem less so. I suppose this is down, as Carol said, to the band being very unsure what to do now that their major creative force wasn't around so much. There seems to be a certain amount of aimlessness hanging over this and the next few albums

    Let There Be More Light ****
    Good riff at the beginning, but the organ playing over the top is a bit random and shambolic sounding. Still, once the intro is over with and the hushed lyrics start this takes a turn for the better. It suddenly sounds quite epic vocally and the contrast between the chanted quieter bits and the louder bits works really well.
    It is of course very 60s, and the Lucy in the Sky reference seems a bit throwaway and unnecessary as if they're trying to connect with something greater than their own band is right now.
    Still, despite that I think this is a strong opening for the album and the stinging electric guitar and organ merge well, building up towards the end. Definitely to build on.

    Remember a Day***1/2
    I like this one too. Good drumming and a lovely whistful atmosphere and some beautiful piano work (not necessarily thr early plinky-plonky-plinky bits though).It has a lovely mellow mood in contrast with the darker tone with much of the album and the band are making good use of voices in this one, both in the vocals and as part of the texture of the track.
    Quietly magnificent.

    Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun ***
    Like much of the album this song seems to exist to create an ambient soundscape, evoking pictures in the mind as you listen (drugs may help with this, of course, though I suspect this album would induce bad trips!). For all the mood it creates, it does seem to me to be rather one note and a bit dull. On the plus side, once again I like the whispered chanting vocals which don't dominate the soundscape here and I like the Xylophone.

    Corporal Clegg**1/2
    This sounds to me like a pastiche of The Beatles' Taxman, only with comedy moments with the kazoo in the middle. I don't mind this track. It's obviously pretty awful, but it does offer a few moments of much needed levity of this rather dark album.
    It's not a track I'd chose to listen to on its own, but as part of the album it's fine.

    A Saucerful of Secrets **
    This is a really menacing track, from its sinister opening onwards. Again, it's all about building up a soundscape using everything they've got, and in this respect it is really successful. The slow build up works well here, but it is a relief when the drumming starts, and again when the drumming stops and we get the lovely organ stuff at the end, which sounds very grand and the "ahhs" at the end are lovely.
    However, each section lasts too long and the track becomes boring very quickly. The end section makes it worth listening to, but it takes a lot of effort to not press fast forward, or skip most of the track altogether.

    See-Saw*1/2
    This one is just forgettable. It shuffles along, changing tempo and sounds every so often to try and keep your interest, but it's just so plodding and dull. I can't find it my heart to feel anything but indifferent about it. It's not offensively bad or brilliantly good. It's just there.

    Jugband Blues ***1/2
    I know I wasn't all that complimentary about Syd's songs on Piper, but here it's rather a relief to hear one, even if it's a slightly scary one, knowing as we all do what happened to him. The lyrics seems extra poignant because of that, and the sudden silence in the middle after the sinister jugband bit... the last lines are quite terrifying.
    As Steve said in his review, this really does feel like the bad comedown after the joys of Piper. This song brings that feeling home.

    I don't know what to think of it all really. As an experiment in making sounds this is a success, but as an album you want to listen to, I think it's somewhat less successful. There are moments of genius, but they seem to be buried in a meandering mess of ideas. There are some obvious things for them to build on though, but I think we've still got a rough ride aheaed through some patchy material before they decide what they really want to do.
    ***/ 5

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    Default Apples and Oranges/Paintbox

    Almost catching up...

    Apples and Oranges/Paintbox


    Columbia DB 8310
    Released 18 November 1967 (UK only)
    Date of UK Chart Entry: n/a


    APPLES AND ORANGES (Syd Barrett) 3.02

    A strange oddity, and not one which is often heard, Pink Floyd?s third British single is a simple, jaunty little tale of a girl shopping. That?s right, she?s not dancing in the woods, or travelling through space, she?s just? shopping. A bizarre, erratic number, which sees Barrett come much more to the fore, this can almost be seen as an ancestor of his solo work, and, like those later recordings, one can almost hear him starting to crack already, the voice not sounding so assured. Unlike the first two singles, Apples And Oranges is not particularly radio-friendly, so it?s therefore unsurprising that it failed to chart. It does, however, at least have a very melodic chorus, with some nice harmonies, and the angelic middle section is rather charming, lending this winter release something of a festive feel. This is a very quirky, very catchy, and ultimately very likeable number, albeit not instantly so. However, the track is already quite removed form the Piper material, and it seems that things may be changing for The Pink Floyd...


    PAINTBOX (Rick Wright) 3.28

    A softer counterpoint to the A-side, this is Rick Wright?s first solo writing effort for the band (or, at least, the first to be released), and it?s a good one. Paintbox sees the author in a somewhat downbeat, reflective mood, and in some ways, it sets the tone for much of Pink Floyd?s later material. It?s a rather jazzy number, with Wright and Mason very much to the fore, the latter producing a strong drum part. In fact, crucially, Barrett?s influence is barely felt at all ? just three months later, he would no longer be a member of the band. Just as importantly, the band are now dealing with more earthly issues, and, although it may not be well remembered, Paintbox can possibly be seen as an important turning point in the band?s development.


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    It's interesting to see the roots of the well-known 'Pink Floyd Sound' appearing as early on as Paintbox. The next four albums seem to develop in different directions.

    I think we'll wait another week before doing 'More', give Dave a chance to catch up! Besides, it only arrived at our house on Friday
    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob McCow View Post
    I think we'll wait another week before doing 'More', give Dave a chance to catch up!
    Aw, gawd bless yer, guv!

    I'm nearly there - having listened to 'A Saucerful of Secrets' a couple of times tonight, I'm hoping to have my review up by Wednesday. I also have two more singles to review, starting with this one...

    It Would Be So Nice/Julia Dream

    Columbia DB 8401
    Released 12 April 1968 (UK); 3 June 1968 (US, Tower Records 426)
    Date of UK Chart Entry: n/a


    IT WOULD BE SO NICE (Rick Wright) 3.38

    For Pink Floyd's first release of a new era, Rick Wright once again takes charge of songwriting duties, and it's interesting to consider that at this brief point in the group's history, Wright is now effectively the frontman. With this change in leadership, comes an instant new sound - from the startling opening, It Would Be So Nice sounds almost completely unlike the Pink Floyd we have come to know. But then, the quirky, rather twee verse sounds different again, as if the post-Barrett Floyd are desperately searching for some identity of their own. The bridge, however, is great, as is the incredibly catchy chorus, with its driving rhythm and excellent harmonies, making the band sound more like a conventional 60's beat combo than a fledgling psychedelic supergroup. David Gilmour's first recording demonstrates some solid, if unremarkable playing, although there is a very brief taster of things to come during that dramatic ending. All in all, It Would Be So Nice is another interesting oddity, and it's a shame that it didn't chart, although at this point, Pink Floyd did not appear to know which way they were heading, and neither, it seems, did the record buying public.


    Pink Floyd, January 1968 - the only photshoot of the band as a five-piece, and the first to feature Gilmour. By April, Syd Barrett would be gone.

    JULIA DREAM (Roger Waters) 2.28

    Gilmour makes more of an impression on the single's B-side, taking lead vocals for the first time on this dark, but dreamy acoustic ballad. The first use of a mellotron on a Floyd recording here lends an eerie, other-worldly tone to proceedings, aided by some strange, electronic effects throughout. Although still leaning towards psychedelic wistfulness, the lyrics, concerning nightmares and paranoia, are some of Waters' strongest at that time, and represent an early indication of some of the bassist's later recurring lyrical themes. Like the previous single, it's the flip-side which points the way forward, and Julia Dream shows Pink Floyd starting to sail away from psychedelia into the new, uncharted waters of much more progressive music...

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    soundtrack from the film more

    ESSENTIAL INFORMATION
    Recorded at Pye Studios at Marble Arch in London in March 1969.
    Released July 27th 1969.
    Highest UK Chart Position – No.9.
    The cover is a still from the film, with a solarised effect by Hipgnosis. There are various stills from the film on the inside and booklet, plus a photo of the band… in ORANGE.

    TRACK LIST
    SIDE A
    (all by Roger Waters, except Up The Khyber by Mason, Wright and Party Sequence by Waters, Wright, Gilmour, Mason)
    Cirrus Minor
    The Nile Song
    Crying Song
    Up the Khyber
    Green Is the Colour
    Cymbaline
    Party Sequence

    SIDE B
    (all by Waters, Wright, Gilmour, Mason, except A Spanish Piece by Gilmour)
    Main Theme
    Ibiza Bar
    More Blues
    Quicksilver
    A Spanish Piece
    Dramatic Theme


    HOT LINKS
    Lyrics - http://pinkfloydhyperbase.dk/albums/more.htm
    Inevitable Wiki – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soundtr..._the_Film_More
    The far better Pink Floyd & Co Link - http://pinkfloyd-co.com/disco/more/more_album.html
    Cymbaline on the soundtrack of the film – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dw8PutsGyL4
    Yes, the whole film is on You Tube – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZBW9E...eature=related

    OTHER ALBUMS OF 1969
    The Beatles – Abbey Road
    The Rolling Stones - Let It Bleed
    The Who - Tommy
    Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin
    AND –
    Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin
    The Velvet Underground – The Velvet Underground
    Crosby, Stills & Nash – Crosby, Stills & Nash
    The Band – The Band
    Blind Faith – Blind Faith
    King Crimson – Ant’s avatar
    Neil Young – Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
    Frank Zappa – Hot Rats
    Captain Beefheart – Trout Mask Replica (weirder than anything by the Floyd)
    Pink Floyd – Ummagumma
    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

  17. #92
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    Default A Saucerful Of Secrets

    Sorry! Late with my homework again...

    A SAUCERFUL OF SECRETS

    Columbia SCX 6258 (stereo), SX 6258 (mono)
    Released 29 June 1968 (UK); 27 July 1968 (US, Tower Records ST 5131)
    Date of UK Chart Entry: 13 July 1968
    Highest UK Chart Position: 9 (11 weeks on chart)
    Highest US Chart Position: n/a


    Produced by Norman Smith
    Sleeve Design and Photos by Hipgnosis

    SIDE ONE

    1. LET THERE BE MORE LIGHT (Roger Waters) 5.39

    A pulsating, hypnotic bass line introduces us to Pink Floyd's second long player. This intriguing instrumental section, with Rick Wright's now-familiar Farfisa organ drifting over proceedings, instantly signals a slightly harder sound, but it's the remainder of the track which really points the way forward, as the intro dissolves into a heavy, mid-tempo tale of alien encounters in East Anglia, and psychedelic visions of Anglo-Saxon leaders: just an ordinary day at the office for The Pink Floyd, and another fine - if atypical - early lyrical offering from Roger Waters. Lead vocals are handled alternately by Wright and Gilmour, and the new guitarist makes quite an impression here, adding a certain rawness to the Floyd sound, and also turning in the first of many legendary solos during the lengthy play-out. Although brought in as a sound-alike replacement for Syd Barrett, Gilmour is already demonstrating his own unique, if, as yet, unrefined style. Let There Be More Light is a superb album opener, and although still displaying some underground trappings, the track clearly shows Pink Floyd moving in a new direction.

    2. REMEMBER A DAY (Rick Wright) 4.33

    A leftover from the Piper sessions, this Rick Wright track occasionally manages to sound slightly more sophisticated than some of the other material from the debut album, and thus fits in perfectly here. A dreamy ballad, the odd vocal effects, coupled with Barrett's soaring guitar, root the song firmly in that earlier period, although Nick Mason's driving rhythm stands out, while the melancholy lyrics offer a contrast to the childlike whimsy of Bike, for example. Although not as innovative or distinctive as Syd Barrett, Wright has by now marked himself out as a songwriter of some merit.

    3. SET THE CONTROLS FOR THE HEART OF THE SUN (Roger Waters) 5.27

    The point at which Roger Waters, songwriter, truly makes his mark on Pink Floyd history. This dark, mystical number with its Eastern flavour (the lyrics apparently influenced by a book of Chinese poetry) and pounding drums, subverts the blues into a mesmeric, doom-laden post-psych space-rocker. Waters' almost-whispered vocals and haunting lyrics add menace to the affair, while the repetitive, trance-like instrumental, featuring wah-wah filtered organ (a favourite effect of Wright's during this period) can clearly be seen to influence many a dance artist from twenty years hence. With Dave Gilmour overdubbing Barrett's original guitar, this is effectively the only track to feature a five-man Pink Floyd, and Set The Controls... manages to fall between two stools: covering all-too familiar ground, yet offering a tantalising glimpse of the future. The song has never been an absolute favourite of mine, and there have been better versions performed by the band (the production values are a bit ropey on this studio recording - witness, for example, that curious jump in sound quality around the 2.30 mark) but Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun is undoubtedly another landmark.


    4. CORPORAL CLEGG (Roger Waters) 4.12

    And then, the other side of Roger Waters' coin is this humorous parody of Sgt. Pepper, with Gilmour and Waters taking lead vocals together for the first time. Some might say that the track is rather annoying, and that there is little to mark it out, other than its bizarre, Nick Mason kazoo solo, and Waters' first dabbling with the military themes which would crop up more often in later efforts, but... I really rather like Corporal Clegg. It actually boasts a strong (and, surprisingly, heavy) group performance, and, above all else, highlights the band's more light-hearted nature, rarely as blatant as it is here, and a key element of Pink Floyd's appeal, often overlooked by those who consider them po-faced and serious.
    Last edited by Dave Tudor; 13th Dec 2008 at 3:02 PM.

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    Default A Saucerful Of Secrets


    SIDE TWO

    1. A SAUCERFUL OF SECRETS (Waters-Wright-Mason-Gilmour) 12.00

    A track quite unlike anything yet produced by Pink Floyd - or anybody else for that matter - this landmark recording sees the group pushing back the boundaries like never before. Waters and Mason, in particular, drew on their architectural background, to design the piece on a large sheet of paper, before the foursome worked together to build this sonic structure in the studio. Depicting a battle and its aftermath, A Saucerful Of Secrets is effectively split into four distinctive parts: the opening part, the menacing Something Else, builds up gradually from its percussive fade-in (actually the sound of a very closely miked cymbal), introducing terrifying, other-worldly noises, courtesy of organ, mellotron and guitar effects, and struck piano wires - this is already a far cry from the more naive experimentalism of Interstellar Overdrive. At 3.51, the cacophony stops suddenly, and Mason's persistent drum pattern takes us off into some other flight into the unknown (Syncopated Pandemonium), full of bangs, crashes, wails, rumbles, and backwards cymbals - this new sound seems altogether less safe, less innocent than what we have heard before: in fact, it's downright scary. Seven minutes in, this sonic attack eventually dissipates, and we hear a mournful organ part, itself no less foreboding (Storm Signal). Eventually, the chaos evaporates, and Wright plays us out with a quite beautiful keyboard arrangement (Celestial Voices). There is still time for some eerie sounds to linger in the background, warning the listener that we are still not quite out of the woods, but those angelic voices at the climax are in turn, haunting, reassuring and moving. It's an unexpected turn of events, which is full of the unexpected, but it's a remarkable end to a remarkable work.

    2. SEE-SAW (Rick Wright) 4.37

    Back in more familiar territory, this is reminiscent of early Rick Wright B-sides. It strikes me as Wright's attempt at a dreamy, Barrett-vintage fairytale, albeit with a slightly more sophisticated, jazzy arrangement. He doesn't quite pull it off, but, despite the criticism (and more erratic production values), I think it's a lovely little song, largely undeserving of its original title, The Most Boring Song I've Ever Heard Bar Two. However, Pink Floyd are by now moving in new directions, as evidenced on the previous track, and See-Saw is a throwback to more innocent times.

    3. JUGBAND BLUES (Syd Barrett) 3.01

    The lost, lamented leader of the group returns for one final word, in this crazy, chaotic, and utterly moving song, Barrett practically spelling out his breakdown in detail, not only in the stark, almost scornful imagery of the lyrics, but also in the song's structure. There is something deeply troubling about Jugband Blues (Peter Jenner called it "the ultimate self-diagnosis on a state of schizophrenia."), and its place, at the end of the second album, tells us immediately that Pink Floyd would never be truly free of the 'ghost' of Barrett's influence. Its Salvation Army instrumental section is pure madness, but the ending is truly heartbreaking: the singer with his guitar, alone, questioning the world around him. It's a brilliantly haunting epitaph, and a disturbing coda to an album which sees The Pink Floyd looking to the future - but seemingly unable to escape their past.

    Last edited by Dave Tudor; 13th Dec 2008 at 3:11 PM.

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    Hurrah! Excellent, glad to see you're only one album behind now Dave!

    Set The Controls... seems like a revered track, a Pink Floyd classic, but on the other hand no-one likes the original version that much! The potential of the song is good, but it doesn't seem to work on A Saucerful of Secrets.
    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

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    In my opinion, it probably doesn't work for the reasons I mentioned, in that it's neither one thing nor the other, and the production isn't that great. Later live versions of 'Set The Controls...' (on both 'Ummagumma' and 'Live At Pompeii', for example) are very good, if a little plodding. However, there's a superb (if slightly abridged) version of the song which was used on the 1968 BBC documentary 'All My Loving' - you can see it here.

    We're now moving into an period of Pink Floyd history which is often overlooked (late 1968-early 1971, roughly), but it's one I'm quite fond of, and I'm looking forward to listening to 'More' again for the first time in years.

    But where oh where are Wayne, Pip and Jeff with their 'Saucerful' reviews...?

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    Soundtrack To The Film 'More'

    Cirrus Minor
    Aww, tweeting bird song! Pink Floyd develop their ‘pastoral’ sound, which is either a blissed out atmospheric joy or really, really boring - depending on your point of view. Cirrus Minor is pretty good. The drifting chords are reminiscent of Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds and the weird noises towards the end fit in pleasingly. It’s wonderfully dreamy and atmospheric.

    The Nile Song
    Rock on! The guitar sound on this is great, really distorted and powerful. The song itself is simple, but then that’s what you want from a rock track, isn’t it?
    On the other hand, because it’s only a simple rock track, this could be the Floyd’s least exciting song up to that point. The lyrics too are uninspiring. I find it very difficult not to repeat the last word of each line.
    “I was standing by the Nile! (NIII-ALLL!!)
    When I saw the lady Smile! (SMIII-ALLL!)” etc.
    It’s the closest thing we’ve had so far to ‘Rock’ from the Floyd boys. I would say it sounds a bit like Led Zeppelin, but as More predates the ‘Leds first album, it’s probably not true.

    Crying Song
    More pastoral stuff. The way that the word ‘Pines’ is sung is bizarrely smug, it seems hissed out through a ridiculous huge grin.
    A haunting melody, some interesting lyrics make this one a decent track, but hardly a stand-out.

    Up the Khyber
    Psychedelic drums and piano, with a sense of driving urgency – this could have been an out-take from an extended version of A Saucerful Of Secrets. This song seems to suggest a bad trip that’s going on and on. The fast-forward at the end is a clever touch, making it seem as though the song never really ends.
    Whereas A Saucerful of Secrets goes on for over ten minutes, this stops after two. Which is fine, because we get the message. Psychedelic freak-outs are all very well, but when they seem to last forever it all gets very dull. By stopping at two minutes, Up The Khyber delivers it’s small performance of psychedelic excitement, then leaves the stage, for which this audience is grateful.

    Green Is the Colour
    I like the penny flute on this song. And the piano coming in at the end rescues it from being too dreary. It’s an upbeat little song, gentle and joyful. Nothing too exciting, but pleasant to listen to.

    Cymbaline
    This one is pretty good actually. It’s laid back and gentle, but it seems to have a bit more bite to it than some of the other songs on this album. The chorus line ‘High time, Cymbaline’ is well sung by Dave Gilmour, making this song into what could almost be… a pop single. Almost!

    Party Sequence
    It’s a party! Bring tom-toms. For one minute.
    Then… Stop! Thank you, Nick Mason.

    Main Theme
    Good stuff, this. It’s got a distinctive and accessible melody, but there’s nothing to really grab the listener. I suppose that is what a soundtrack song should be all about.

    Ibiza Bar
    A slight return of the Nile Song! Wonderful. The distorted guitar sound is back and the intro sounds exactly the same. The melody line isn’t quite strong enough to make this memorable though.


    More Blues
    Umm… Bluesy.
    The album is running out of steam now, we seem to be getting more ‘soundtrack’ songs. I think Pink Floyd were trying to get away from simple Blues, although Gilmour’s certainly a capable Blues guitarist on this showing. It’s all so delicate and quietly played, when a bit of extra bite would have made it more interesting.
    Oh! It’s ‘MORE’ Blues, as in the film’s title. Perhaps they were getting fed up with doing soundtrack music already?


    Quicksilver
    Quicksilver sounds like it could have been on ‘A Saucerful of Secrets’ though it’s not really as good. It has that feel to it though. It starts off with a huge metallic rasping noise that sounds a bit like someone snorting up through a straw. Surely not? Overall the song has too much in the way of quiet pissing about on the organ, which probably works well in the context of the film but is dull to listen to.
    At over seven minutes, this song really weighs down the second half of the album.

    A Spanish Piece
    Hey look! We can do Flamenco too! The background vocals are a bit weird and pervy.

    Dramatic Theme
    There’s loads of delay on the guitar in this track, which gives it a good ‘space-rock’ feel. The rhythm section lays down something fairly basic around which the guitar and organ play whatever they feel like.

    Although a lot of this album is quiet and pastoral (Nile Song and Ibiza Bar accepted) it’s not at all bad. It seems to be totally forgotten by Pink Floyd fans and the band themselves, but there’s some great stuff on here.
    It’s their first effort without Syd and it doesn’t have his quirky style on it at all. It seems the band have ejected what Syd did for them and they’ve had to find a new direction. At this point, although they’re not making great leaps forward they are proving to be competent songwriters.

    Three out of five, I think!
    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

  22. #97
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob McCow View Post
    I would say it sounds a bit like Led Zeppelin, but as More predates the ?Leds first album, it?s probably not true.
    *cough

    Zep 1:

    Recorded at Olympic Studios in London in October 1968.
    Released 12 January 1969.

    More:

    Recorded at Pye Studios at Marble Arch in London in March 1969.
    Released July 27th 1969.


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    Hats Off To Wayne Jeffries
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    Excuse me while I just take one last sidestep into single territory - for the time being, at least...

    Point Me At The Sky/Careful With That Axe Eugene


    Columbia DB 8511
    Released 17 December 1968 (UK only)
    Date of UK Chart Entry: n/a


    POINT ME AT THE SKY (Waters-Gilmour) 3.30

    The first Roger Waters-David Gilmour composition for Pink Floyd, and the band's final UK single for 11 years, Point Me At The Sky is a cautionary tale of flying machines and escape from an overcrowded future world: an unusual subject matter for 1968, but curiously relevant today. Opening with some dreamy Rick Wright keyboards and a much more assured vocal from Gilmour, the track immediately sounds different to earlier Floyd singles. Suddenly, the song explodes into life, the tempo changes, and this much more raucous section, sung by Waters, instantly sounds less comforting, the lyrics more bleak - in fact, this is an excellent lyrical effort from the bassist, and it seems that his songwriting abilities have grown considerably since A Saucerful Of Secrets. Altogether, this is a very strong single, raw and rock-tinged, arresting in its changes in time signature and atmosphere (admittedly somewhat influenced by Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, mind), yet bearing enough of a 'pop' factor that it is a disappointment that it was not a hit - maybe record buyers, like Pink Floyd themselves, had well and truly decided that the 45" was no longer the way forward for the band. Perhaps if the song had been expanded on, with more lyrical content and a leaner fade-out, and had found a place on one of the albums, the track might be better remembered - as it is, Point Me At The Sky is something of a lost classic.


    CAREFUL WITH THAT AXE EUGENE (Waters-Wright-Gilmour-Mason) 5.46

    Flipping over the single, once again we see the true way forward for Pink Floyd. A menacing bassline, a simple octave played throughout, provides the backbone for this eerily atmospheric original version of the terrifying early Floyd classic. As instrumentals go, it's altogether more unsettling than earlier efforts, and the harsher, less playful improvisation signals another sea change for the band. That scream, courtesy of Waters, is utterly blood-curdling, but the track never truly takes full flight, as live versions were wont to, and, with more variable production values evident, this studio recording of Eugene sounds rather too restrained. This is a hungry, adventurous Pink Floyd, almost ready to go into orbit, and yet, one feels that maybe producer Norman Smith is holding them down to earth somewhat. Still, it's an unusual - and brave - choice for a B-side, and offers a sound that was never heard on a Pink Floyd single, before or since.
    Last edited by Dave Tudor; 16th Dec 2008 at 1:09 AM.

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    Oh dear - if, as Carol said, 'Saucerful of Secrets' is the leper of early Pink Floyd albums, does that make 'More' the hideous, man-made killer virus created in a secret laboratory somewhere? Where are all the reviews!?

    I'm putting the finishing touches to my write-up now, so it should appear either tonight or tomorrow. In the meantime, I enjoyed reading your review, Steve, and your thoughts on 'Party Sequence' and the 'Spanish Piece' vocals particularly made me chuckle!

    Did you come to this one completely fresh, Steve? It does tend to be ignored somewhat, and for those who are mostly used to the later stuff, it can be something of a surprise - pleasant or not!

    But you're right, there's some good stuff there, 'Cymbaline' especially being a gem from that era.

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