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


Pink Floyd


Psychedelic/Space Rock

4.62 | 3762 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars I think it's time I gave this album another chance. Last time I dismissed it because I was biased against it, and this time I want to clear it all up. This is as good or better than "Dark Side of the Moon", at least.

"Shine on You Crazy Diamond" starts with a quiet synth buildup, heralded by a strange "falling star" effect in the background. The keyboard drone builds up, and a synth horn effect enters and creates an ominous, foggy, mystic effect. Then a few upper strings on a guitar are plucked, and the synth readjusts, becoming a bass of sorts. Then Part One of this nine-part song ends with the synth slowly fading, then a single riff appears ambiently out of the silence. It is repeated, and soon the drums begin to rise until the music hits a point, and a world seems to open up as the band comes in. Part Two continues the slow rock feel of Part One, but the guitar is more prominent. Then the guitar fades, and the synth horn again takes over for Part Three. It creates a melancholy, ambient feel, and leads into Part Four, where the vocals begin.

The lyrics are essentially about Syd BARRETT, the former frontman of PINK FLOYD who went crazy from LSD use and holed himself up in his house in England. They can be applied to other things, however. When this part ends, Part Five begins and the saxophone joins. This part fades out into the monotonous drone of a machine, and a buzz heralds the arrival of "Welcome to the Machine."

This song is mainly acoustic, with the mechanical drone of keyboards accompanying. The lyrics greet a newcomer to the music world (or adult life itself, they can be taken either way). The song is great, and a keyboard solo enters around the middle for a haunting mechanical feel. Then the tape clicks, and is sped up and fades out. Just when you think it's over, the sound of a crowd of people begins and heralds the end of the first side (as it would have been on an LP).

The excellent song "Have a Cigar" is next. It features a repeated, catchy riff, while staying strangely progressive. This song is again about the music world, and the lyricss are the record label guy talking to a newcomer artist. He is full of fluff, only concerned with milking the money from the poor musician. Then this song is sucked into oblivion, with only a faint, crackling rumble in its place. Then it seems as though a record is replaced, and the silent beginning of the title track, er, begins. It has a longing feel, and seems to be played through a radio at first. But it is soon joined by a closer-to-us lead guitar. They soon join and mourn over the separation between people.

This entire album is about absenses in life. The first (and last) song in this album is about the absense of Syd, the second song is about the absense of free will, the third is about the absense of conscience or soul, and the title track is about absense of relationships, of feeling.

This song is swept away by wind, and then a progressing riff enters to push into Part Six of "Shine On". A synth horn enters as well. It steadily builds, then is joined by the lyrics for Part Seven. Part Eight then enters in a funky sort of way and then Part Nine fades the whole thing out much like Part One did, but in reverse.

Overall, this album seems to appeal more to those who didn't like "The Wall" or "Dark Side." It is somewhat more commercial, more accessible. Somehow it does this and also stays prog without becoming pop prog (like RUSH's "Moving Pictures"). I recommend it to those who are fans of FLOYD, or those who didn't really like "Dark Side" that much.

penguindf12 | 5/5 |


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