Friday, April 17, 2015

Not Just Any Brick in the Wall

Those who stray from the beaten path are met with either resistance or cordial welcome. Those who stray from the beaten path and make a name for themselves out of passion for something are met with an everlasting legacy. Pink Floyd, a classic rock band founded in 1967 with their debut album The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, spun the world of psychedelia toward a larger audience that still exists today. A different style, however, set Pink Floyd apart from other bands of the time preaching much of the same messages through their lyrics.

Floating through the decades

Wish You Were Here (1975) album
The Pink Floyd legends began their professional careers at Abbey Road Studios, London, in 1967 with their producer Norman Smith - sound familiar? Indeed, Syd Barrett, Rick Wright, Nick Mason, and Roger Waters met and recorded with the Beatles in their younger years. The young band was short-lived; January 20, 1968, was Syd Barrett's last performance with his fellow musicians before being abandoned by them for his behavioral issues. Even yet, Pink Floyd continued to impact fans in both the U.S. and the U.K. without the star guitarist, and is still associated with the iconic group. With Barrett's capricious behavior, David Gilmour stood in as guitarist and eventually joined Pink Floyd permanently. The new lineup was a smash. In 1972, the band's most famous album, Dark Side of the Moon, was released and reached and maintained a number one spot on the list of top hits of the 70s. After releasing many more albums over the next decade, Roger Waters decided to split from the band in 1985 due to his personal anxieties. In fact, Pink Floyd's The Wall is based entirely on Waters' personal trauma and childhood. David Gilmour, though a late addition to the band, ironically is the current face of Pink Floyd and still active in the music industry. He is currently touring around the world and releasing solo albums.
The Division Bell (1994) album

In the 21st century, the band continued to perform in live concerts featuring visual displays for their audiences. Their impact on classic rock and music fans is evident in today's society; at most retail stores, Pink Floyd shirts are sold to today's young generation of music lovers who may lack an understanding of the history but share an appreciation for the music. 

'Comfortably Numb' and equally impactful

All Pink Floyd fans have experienced the eccentric movie The Wall (1982), written by Roger Waters himself. The film portrays the band's strange and eclectic identity through their fears, interests, secrets, and deepest thoughts. Imagine delving into the deepest, darkest corner of these masterminds' minds and finding a treasure chest of morbid thoughts and insecurities, then molding it into a 95-minute film. In almost all of Pink Floyd's songs, all of which include seemingly oddly placed sound effects and audio clips, elements of the film are detectable, such as Pink Floyd's famous song quote, "How can you have any pudding if you don't eat your meat?" Also, in the first video below, spotlights are used to simulate helicopters, a sound component of "Another Brick in the Wall". Pink Floyd's distinct psychedelic style can be detected even in some of today's music with the creation of "neo-psychedelia". 

This is a recent concert (1994), but a great example of Pink Floyd's use of light to portray certain emotions or feelings in their songs... they are known for their visual portrayals at concerts. Most of their songs are difficult to interpret without help, so feel free to look up the meanings of some of their songs. This performance features "Another Brick in the Wall"... it's just a glimpse of how epic their concerts are. Enjoy the laser light show.

"Echoes" as part of Pink Floyd's "Live at Pompeii" performance. You may skip through the first minute or so of this video... it is mostly footage of the band setting up. As you skim through the video, notice the extremely psychedelic elements included and eerie overall mood. Most of their music videos are similar and demonstrate the effects of drugs on the 70s. 

Feel free to check out Pink Floyd's official website for the band's history, art, and music.

1 comment:

  1. This is an awesome article, i love it. I also like how you added pictures. Can't wait until your next post!!