Pink Floyd

ARTICLE ABOUT Pink Floyd FROM New Musical Express, January 2, 1971

If you were at the right age, reading this review at the beginning of the year 1971, I guess you would be very curious of this band. I would have gone to see them – wouldn`t you?
Read on!


Concert review

By Tony Stewart

SNAP, crackle and pop, a whistling kettle, and the smell of bacon cooking opened the first set of the Pink Floyd concert at Birmingham Town Hall just before Christmas. (Friday, December 18). Needless to say it was the “Psychedelic Breakfast” from the Atom Heart Mother album.
Another surprise came for the opening of the second set. A 15 strong choir and complete horn section wandered on to the stage to accompany Floyd on “Atom Heart Mother” — the first performance in the provinces of this remarkable suite, which brought the 2,000 audience to their feet in acclaim.
The first set was an appetiser for the suite. Moving on from “Breakfast” Floyd played some very powerful music, with complicated time changes, stops and starts, and a very economic use of sound effects — ranging from crying babies, galloping horses, gongs, zissling crash cymbals to aircraft noises on the Moog topped off by the well controlled feed-back.
The Dave Gilmour vocals on “Fat Old Sun” were tinged with sentimentality, and he delivered the ballad-like tune well. His voice has a certain originality of nearly breaking into a sob, but not quite managing it.
The second set, which had been eagerly anticipated, was no let-down. As soon as Floyd started to play an electric excitement buzzed through the hall — which intensified with the pressure of the music.
The use of choir and horns enhances their musical abilities. At first the music is quiet with soft drumming, a good lead by Dave, a strong bass line and a soothing organ. The choir adds to the sounds, and then the introduction of the brass fuses the rock and classical music, generating a very powerful sound.
The use of brass is subtle, making the intricate music more urgent and forceful, highlighting Pink Floyd. Frequently they are left to put some very hard rock into the suite, driven on by the precise drumming of Nicki Mason, with some relief by Rick on the Moog, loosing the significance of the music in preparation for the climax.
And slowly the suite continued to gain strength reaching its final peak to the exuberant delight of the Floyd freaks.


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ARTICLE ABOUT Pink Floyd FROM New Musical Express, July 1, 1967

This is really some good stuff as this article was printed about a month before Pink Floyd released their debut album on August 4th, 1967. Really early days for the band but we can see the direction they were heading in, and later became hugely famous for, in this article.
Read on!


Nothing nasty behind our light and colour effects

Says Pink Floyd`s Roger Waters to Norrie Drummond

“WE are simply a pop group. But because we use light and colour in our act, a lot of people seem to imagine that we are trying to put across some message with nasty, evil undertones.” So said Roger Waters, bass guitarist with the Pink Floyd back in the NME Chart this week with “See Emily Play.”
The Pink Floyd as most people now know were one of the first groups to start the pop “son et lumiere” cult. By using equipment which threw liquid abstract shapes on to a stage backdrop the Pink Floyd built up large followings in London’s freak-out parlours like the Round House and the UFO club.
But the group themselves have always remained rather remote, mystical creatures simply because few people could see them properly.
It sometimes makes it very difficult for us to establish any association with the audience,” said Roger. “Apart from the few at the front no one can really identify us.”
The Pink Floyd — Rick Wright, Nick Mason, Syd Barrett and Roger — turned professional less than four months ago and already they have had two medium hits.
“We’re not rushing into anything. At the moment we want to build slowly and I think we’re doing not too badly. The important thing is that we’re doing what we want to do.
“We record the numbers we want and fortunately they seem to be the ones that people want. No one interferes with us when we’re in the studio. They just leave us, more or less, alone to get on with what we want.”
The Pink Floyd, unlike most groups, pay very little attention to what goes on in the charts.
“We listen to Radio London and the other stations,” said Roger. “But we don’t really concern ourselves with what other groups are doing. The Chart puzzles me because I just can’t imagine the type of person who would buy Engelbert Humperdinck’s record and the Cream’s. That is if there is such a type.”

What type of audience then did the Pink Floyd attract?
“We recently played a concert at the Queen Elizabeth Hall,” said Roger, “and that’s usually where string quartets play. The people who came to see us there were a very mixed lot.
“Some really way-out people with bare feet and a few old women who always go to the Queen Elizabeth Hall no matter what’s on. But mostly they were average men and women between 17 and 25 mixed with a few teeny-boppers.”
The Pink Floyd want to play a string of these concerts in the autumn, “We’d like to play the major centres like Manchester, Liverpool and Glasgow doing our own two-hour show.”
The group thinks that it would be a successful venture. “You see,” said Roger, “contrary to what some people think it’s not just the Southern audiences that we appeal to. In fact the further North we go, the better the reception.
“We played in Belfast recently and the reception there was great. The same thing happened when we played in Abergavenny. We had screamers and everything. It really astonished us.”
As I was leaving Roger he suddenly turned to his manager Andrew King. “I’ve just remembered a great idea I had last night.
“I was driving down the M.1 and the wing mirror on a lorry in front was vibrating finely. It was reflecting all the other lights on the road, winking indicators, stop lights and so on. Now, supposing we were to. . . .”
That, I suppose, is how a “Happening” begins.


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ARTICLE ABOUT Pink Floyd FROM New Musical Express, April 1, 1967

Here`s a real goodie from a time far, far away. Almost in another galaxy.
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School inspired Pink Floyd

By Jeremy Pascall

PROJECTED Sound, they call it. Also a Total Show. Lighting effects, distortions and a song about a man called “Arnold Layne” (in the charts this week at No. 26) who has a strange hobby – collecting clothes!
The group is the Pink Floyd, four off-beat young students. Organist Rick Wright studied music, bassist Roger Waters was an architect while Sid Barrett (lead) and Nick Mason (drums) studied art at Hornsey College.
It was at this art school that a laboratory of light and sound was set up. Sid and Nick became involved and saw potential in the effects created to exploit in their own group which had been formed for some time.
They developed a technique which they described as a “fusion of light, colour and music” consisting of projected images and weird luminous effects. But, they hasten to point out, it is NOT psychedelic!
They started this new music form only a few months back and gained immediate reception in the student circuits.
They played regularly at London`s freak-out palais – the Round House and numbered among their first fans a strange figure dressed as an Arab – Paul McCartney.
The Pink Floyd play all their own material which includes the extraordinary “Arnold Layne” written by Sid Barrett who shares the vocal with Roger Waters.


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ARTICLE ABOUT Pink Floyd FROM New Musical Express, December 13, 1969

Here`s a real goodie for those of you who like the Floyd.
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Three years ago, when they started Underground they had a rough ride

Pink Floyd have the last laugh

By Nick Logan

When the Tremeloes can talk about playing progressive material then the day is dawning for the complete establishment into pop of a stream of music once laughed at and contemptuously dismissed as a short-lived fad.
Three or so years back when it was all starting, Pink Floyd were getting a rough ride from the pop pundits… but went on to do perhaps more than any other group to open the way for the new breed of pop musicians who in 1969 have made their presence felt in no uncertain manner.
As far as last laughs and all that, Pink Floyd have plenty to chuckle about.
“When we started in UFO it was a beautiful place to play,” recalled Floyd keyboard wizard Richard Wright when we spoke last week. “But when we went outside London nobody wanted to know. People used to throw bottles at us.
“At the same time we had a slight hit with See Emily Play and people expected us to play Top 20 stuff. Instead we came along with this strange music they didn’t understand.
“People just didn’t believe in us; I think they regarded us as a huge joke,” continued Richard without bitterness. “They saw us as a lot of freaks getting up on stage and playing freakish music.
“I’ll never forget Pete Murray saying on ‘Juke Box Jury’ that we were just a cult and would last for six months.”


From the groundwork laid by the Floyd and their contemporaries the whole Underground network, along with the University circuit, built up.
Could Richard forsee the progressive boom? “I knew it would happen some time but I didn’t know if it would happen quickly or slowly.
“I don’t think we could have seen it happening to such an extent where today the Underground is now the overground and Underground groups are getting better money than the teenyboppers.
“Yes I would agree that it is today’s pop music, and it is really nice because there are so many groups playing good music and it is accepted everywhere.”
Everywhere? “Well there are still a few places where a few people will walk out, but generally speaking it just gets better and better.
“Even Glasgow, which you might expect to be an incredibly bad scene for a group like us, is a really beautiful place to play.”
What did Richard think changed it?
It was UFO; it was groups like us and the whole hippie philosphy that was connected with it.
“And because the pop thing was then so shallow and empty and people wanted better things. Now because of it even straight pop is becoming better.
“Audiences now demand that you must he able to play your instrument — it’s not just a question of having a pretty face or wearing way out clothes. I should think it’s pretty hard to establish yourself as a teenybopper group now.
“It’s nice too that what has happened in the past three-four years has encouraged really good musicians to care about what is happening in pop and to form their own bands.
“It is very encouraging to find that what you believe in is commercial.”



After a couple of medium successes with singles, the Floyd dropped away from the market to make their name through albums. Their double set, “Ummagumma,” is at No 9 in this week’s NME Chart.
I asked Richard if the group had any inclinations to return to singles, with the successes of Fleetwood Mac and Jethro Tull in mind.
“Well we had that one hit and then two after that didn’t make it,” he replied. “Then we came to realise that it was not important to get hits and that, in fact, a No 1 for us might be a bit of a drag.
“I find the whole business of pop and Top Of The Pops a drag, and the singles scene is a dying market anyway.
“I’m not putting it down. If we got a single that went to No 1 it might be nice but it wouldn’t be important because that’s not what we are about.”
He see nothing wrong however, with other groups breaking into the singles field; nor does he feel it will do them any harm.
“It is rubbish to say they have gone commercial,” he maintains. “Bands like Jethro Tull and Fleetwood Mac believe in what they are playing and in the end it always comes down to the music.
“It is not a question of a sell-out — it means in fact that pop is growing up.
“From now on I believe pop music will be good music. There will be still more change but the standards have been raised and I cannot see them going down again.”
Pink Floyd, of late, have encountered a great deal of success in the film world with their scores for “The Committee” and “More,” released as their last hit album, and Richard sees this as further proof of the new acceptance for progressive music.
In this field they’ve recently completed the score for a TV cartoon series in the States — the producer asked them to do it after hearing “Saucerfull Of Secrets” — and for an Italian film to be released here in February.
An album of the music will be released at the same time and as the group will be recording a further album later this month there are plenty of Floyd goodies on the horizon.
“Film scores are very hard work,” commented Richard. “On the Italian film we worked solidly day and night for two weeks to produce 20 minutes of music. But it is very satisfying work and we’d like to do more of it.”
He went on to reveal that the score also contains some un-Floydian segments; the group using blues and country and western music at certain points.

New Tour

In February they start a concert tour at London’s Albert Hall and plan to develop more the Azemuth Co-ordinator used on previous dates.
Richard explained it is a stereo system with either four or eight speakers that can be set up around a concert hall so that the audience is completely immersed in the sound — 360 degrees stereo if you like.
They would also like to work with an orchestra. “We want to write a complete work for the orchestra and ourselves so that the group is another part of the orchestra.”
Then, if it is possible, the orchestra would be split up and positioned around the hall — along with the speakers — so the audience would he sitting in the middle of the music.
I don’t think they fear any competition from the Trems with that!



ARTICLE ABOUT Pink Floyd FROM SOUNDS, September 6, 1975

Now, this review is a surprise! First hand reaction to this album is baffling, seeing as it today may be counted as one of rock history`s greatest albums ever.
Read on!


Album review:

Pink Floyd: `Wish You Were Here` (Harvest) (35:30)

Is two and one half years too long for any rock band to spend between albums? Was Rome built in a day? Architecture is, after all, as important to the Floyd as music. Not that they`ve lain idly around since `Dark Side Of The Moon`. There has been steady touring to consolidate their new-found position, the abandoned recording of an album that did away with all musical instruments, and the composition of songs – some have ended up on this platter. But two and a half years? This album is light years better than `DSOTM`. That album was patchy, a first attempt to formulate all the bits and pieces of ideas from previous works into one coherent whole, presenting an album rather than a series of songs. It was also a bit light in inspiration. This record achieves all those aims, synthesising nearly all their post-`Umma Gumma` thinking into one melange, from `One Of These Days` to `Atom Heart Mother` to `Alan`s Psychedelic Breakfast`. The record opens with an almost Mahler like overture, all sounds courtesy of Rick Wright, sequelling into a long, guitar dominated intro to `Shine On Crazy Diamond`. At times Gilmour repeats himself from `Echoes` and he is never unpredictable, though I don`t mean to belittle his limitations – with the exception of Wright, virtuosity isn`t important within the confines of the Floyd. Like good architects they`re concerned with form, with structure. That`s all this album is. `Diamond` is a measured homage to Syd Barrett, the spectre they can`t shake off, a (lack of) presence that seems to be felt more and more as they continue to add increasingly refined arabesques to the niche they have carved since his departure. The lyrics aren`t the most inspired, but fit the bill. A boozy sax solo undercut by a nicely juxtaposed repeating guitar figure takes us out to the corridor, through a series of doors, into the engine room and `Welcome To The Machine`, which is downright weird.

Apart from a 12-string, Wright is the only man present, providing great sound effects throughout, perfectly punctuating the lyrics. This is his showpiece, though his work throughout makes him the hero of the platter – no idle fingers on his hands. The lyrics could almost be about Syd again. `Have A Cigar` is a conversation from manager to group. The one track that sets no higher pretension than to boogie down, in three short verses its scalpel sharp lyrics expose the exact philosophy of Seventies rock. Certainly the chorus deserves to become this decade`s anthem. The tune is cut short by a blast of synth, reappears on a radio, someone twists the dial and then we`re lifting into `Wish You Were Here`, all multitracked acoustics and French horns and piano. The scouring pad vocal is back, singing Dylan via Ian Hunter. Cosmic wind moves into a long passage that could be either the outro to the previous song or the intro to a reprise of `Shine On Crazy Diamond`. Building from a bouncing synthi bass line we soon find ourselves, engulfed in echo, in a typical Floyd construction. Mason and Waters hold down a remarkably funky rhythm line while Wright and Gilmour go quietly crazy. Although Gilmour`s lead work is fairly standard his rhythm is terrific, constantly weaving and interacting with Mason-Waters Overdrive. From `Shine On` they move into another instrumental piece which features a moderately funky clarinet solo – you can even bump to parts of it – and then the epilogue leaves us much as we entered. There isn`t the grandiose pomposity of `Moon`, nor is there the same bombastic power. Things have been tightened up, surfaces smoothed, interfaces blurred. That there are only four skeletal songs is irrelevant; we`re not dealing with songs on a record anymore but environments, creations of mood through specific textures of sound. Ultimately, this album forces the question: where do they go from here? Although slow, are they moving into a new realm of music? Or are they just running out of ideas?


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