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Pink Floyd - A Nice Pair CD (album) cover


Pink Floyd


Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.23 | 118 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars A 2- LP compilation with PINK FLOYD's first two studio albums. It was released in December 1973, the same year on which the band (In March) also released their most successful album (until then) titled "The Dark Side of the Moon". Like the "Yesterdays" compilation from YES from 1975, this 2-LP set compilation album from PINK FLOYD was maybe released to try to have more new fans of the music of the band, trying to attract the new listeners to their early albums. I never bought this "A Nice Pair" 2- LP set, but I have listened to both albums with their individual original cover designs. But I like a lot the gatefold cover design of this "A Nice Pair" compilation, which was designed by Hipgnosis. I think that it was one of the best cover designs that they did for the band and also one of their best cover designs overall.

The first LP in this 2 LP set is "The Piper at the Gates of Dawn", their first album, which was originally released in August 1967, with the original line-up (Syd Barrett, Nick Mason, Roger Waters and Richard Wright). An album dominated by Syd Barrett's songwriting and singing (with only two tracks being composed by all the members of the band, "Pow R. Toc H." and "Interstellar Overdrive"), very Psychedelic. It also sounds a bit "primitive", with not a very good production and recording. It seems that producer Noman Smith still had some problems then to try to understand better the music and the ideas of the band in their first album. But the best songs in this album for my taste are "Astronomy Domine" and "Bike". But this first album as a whole is not one of my favorites from the band.

The second LP in this compilation is their second album titled "A Saucerful of Secrets", which was originally released in June 1968. It is better than their first album, in my opinion. With the personal and mental health problems from Syd Barrett, this album was recorded during a problematic time for the band, with them trying to survive as a band without their main songwriter and leader. So, they invited David Gilmour to first assist them to play the guitar in some concerts, with Barrett still in the band, and later to finally replace him on guitar and vocals in concerts and in their singles and albums. First, the band wanted to keep Barrett in the band, still hoping for him to recover. But finally it didn't happen, and Barrett had to leave the band, with him still appearing in three songs in this second album ("Remember a Day", "Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun", and in his own song, "Jugband Blues"). The band had a five musicians' line-up for a very brief time in early 1968 (with some photos from this period in existence) before they realized that Barrett could not function as musician, songwriter, lead singer and leader in the band anymore. Wright and Waters tried to replace him as songwriters and lead singers, and they had success, in my opinion. This album is still very Psychedelic, but much better recorded and produced by Norman Smith. My favorite songs from this album are "Remember a Day" (originally recorded for their first album) and "See-Saw", with both songs being composed and sung by Wright.

A good compilation album which never was released on CD (as long as I know). With both albums being individually available on CD with their original covers since a long time ago, maybe "A Nice Pair" is now more remembered for the cover design than for anyhing else, I think. A very collectable gatefold cover. But maybe it is also remembered as an historical item for the most dedicated fans of the band.

Guillermo | 4/5 |


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