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Pink Floyd - Wish You Were Here CD (album) cover

WISH YOU WERE HERE

Pink Floyd

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

4.62 | 2797 ratings

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Chris H
Prog Reviewer
5 stars More surrealistic than a Claude Monet acid trip, this cover just absolutely amazed me. The idea of mixings two different concepts, fire and life (the human) made for such an interesting contrast that this turned out to be one of the greatest album covers to grace the world. Enough about the cover though, there is actually music to talk about here.

Side 1 starts off with the Floyd song virtually everybody and their brother knows about, "Shine On You Crazy Diamond, Parts I-V". This is everybody at Pink Floyd headquarters' big tribute song to their fallen (only mentally at the time) original guitarist, madman genius Syd Barrett. Each instrument only goes for as long as the human ears allow it go for here, and because of this everything stays fresh and interesting. Just as you think Gilmour's soft tones might bore you, he either kicks it up a notch or Roger Waters will bring some new bass beats into the equation to spice it up and keep the listener interested. The lyrics here? Oh man don't even get me started. They are an absolute touch of mastery, some of the greatest stuff ever to be put on paper. "Welcome To The Machine" is the often much overlooked second A-side song, and I really feel that it does not get the recognition it deserves. Most people just brush it off as "The song that comes after Shine On", but it really is a complex and mysterious piece in itself. A deep and dark mixture of "Dark Side" inspired psychedelia full of twisted lyrics and noise effects, this is not a song you can miss.

Side 2 is considerably weaker, in my opinion. However, considerably weaker means nothing because this is still a stand-out album. "Have a Cigar" is really breaks the trippy, psychedelic flow that they had going through the A-side. Roy Harper sings this tale about the dysfunctional record industry, and it is a much more straight-forward rock n' roll song which doesn't really blend with the atmosphere they have worked so hard to create up to this point. The one thing I do like, however, is the fade out of "Have a Cigar" into the radio opening of "Wish You Were Here". "Wish You Were Here" is a really simple piece of music, but it is touching and heartbreaking at the same time. One of the first songs I ever played on guitar, this song will stay with me forever not only in that view, but because it such an excellent song considering lyrics and musicianship. The second half of "Shine on You Crazy Diamond", which is parts VI-IX, acts as the outro/closer to the album. Not quite as good as the first half of the suite, this one lacks the energy and passion that the first half used so strongly. I wouldn't mind seeing them switch positions on the album, as this would be a better opener than closer.

One of the first experimental concept albums I have ever come across that doesn't have any random instrumentation or "noodling". The synths are on fire here, and Gilmour shines on Waters' lyrics. A true 5 star album right here, this completely eclipses "Dark Side of the Moon".

Shine on Syd, Shine on.

Chris H | 5/5 |

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