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why is Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" better than what came before it?

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why is Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" better than what came before it?

Old 09-27-07, 10:17 AM
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why is Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" better than what came before it?

I'm not a huge Pink Floyd fan, but I am familiar with some of their material. Particularily from "Dark Side of the Moon" and "Wish You Were Here," which were their most commercially successful albums.

It seems that there is a line drawn that separates Pink Floyd albums. "Dark Side" and everything that came before it, and "Dark Side" and everything that came after it.

What was it that caused "Dark Side of the Moon" to go through the roof in both sales and people's consciousness of the group, as opposed to the album that came before it? Was it a particular change in the music, or the singing, or what, exactly?
Old 09-27-07, 10:26 AM
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It's just an amazing album from start to finish. Up to that point they had made great albums but DSOTM was a cut above musically , lyrically and sonically. Plus it had the best songs of their career up to that point.
Old 09-27-07, 10:34 AM
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Meddle was a kick ass album and I actually prefer it over Animals which came in-between the powerhouses DSOTM, WYWH, and The Wall.
Old 09-27-07, 10:44 AM
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Everything just came together on that album. Roger Water's writing was just unbelievable.
Old 09-27-07, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Matthew Chmiel
Meddle was a kick ass album and I actually prefer it over Animals which came in-between the powerhouses DSOTM, WYWH, and The Wall.
so what do you think of 'The Final Cut'? (an album which I personally like alot).
Old 09-27-07, 10:49 AM
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God, I love The Final Cut. But I'm a Waters whore and even like his solo stuff.
Old 09-27-07, 10:59 AM
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The two albums that they did before DSOTM are also very good. Meddle and Obscured By Clouds.

Meddle has One Of These Days, Echoes and Feerless. One of These Days is an instrument and isn't gonna get radio play and Echoes is like 20+ minutes long.

Obscured By Clouds has Childhood's End and Wot's ... Uh the Deal. This album definately has the DSOTM WYWH sound to it. There are a few other good songs, but this just isn't as complete an album as DSOTM and WHYH.


It just took them one more album to completely put it all together.
Old 09-27-07, 11:08 AM
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A major reason for the, at the time, revolutionary nature of DSOTM was the influence of Alan Parsons and the use of modern recording and synthesized music techniques and the Abbey Road studio, which as anyone could tell you, seems to have a sound of its own. Obscured By Clouds was not recorded there, and only parts of Meddle were.

FWIW, for me the demarcation point for Pink Floyd is when Syd left the band.
Old 09-27-07, 01:07 PM
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Agreed with wendersfan's comments above regarding the recording process.

Also, while Meddle was fabulous and is seen as something of a run-up to DSOTM, it's a much more uneven album than DSOTM. The transition from "One Of These Days" into "San Tropez" is downright abrasive, and "Seamus" would have trouble fitting into just about any Pink Floyd album. By contrast, DSOTM flows so smoothly you almost don't notice it's made up of separate songs.

And as much as I love "Echoes", it's kind of the last gasp of Pink Floyd's "space rock" approach and as such is a little tiresome in the middle (depending on one's mood), and again, DSOTM doesn't have any of that.
Old 09-27-07, 01:19 PM
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btw, what ever happened to the promised release of surround sound edition of 'Wish You Were Here?
Old 09-27-07, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by tcoursen
Obscured By Clouds has Childhood's End and Wot's ... Uh the Deal. This album definately has the DSOTM WYWH sound to it. There are a few other good songs, but this just isn't as complete an album as DSOTM and WHYH

The thing that's fascinating about Obscured by Clouds is that it's almost a dry run for Dark Side of the Moon. The songs have practically the same structure and flow that Dark Side has. For some reason, Obscured by Clouds doesn't quite get there. You can hear them struggling towards it but they never quite go all the way. On Dark Side, they finally make the breakthrough.

As far as why it's "better" than what came before, well... you're going to get a strong argument from a lot of people that Pink Floyd's best material came before Dark Side. Some Floyd fans hold the Syd Barrett stuff in VERY high esteem. I'm one of them to an extent, but personally, I think Wish You Were Here is their magnum opus. The reason that Dark Side sounds different is that for years the band had been struggling to find their own voice in the post Syd era. Barrett was the core of Floyd in the beginning and it took a long time for the band to stop writing new material in the Barrett mode. Dark Side is really the first album to completely abandon Barrett's influence and establish a fully unique voice. At least, that's how I see it.
Old 09-27-07, 01:54 PM
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Originally Posted by wendersfan
FWIW, for me the demarcation point for Pink Floyd is when Syd was kicked out of the band for being an unreliable, lsd-addled, brain-fried distraction.
Fixed.

btw, I like "Piper" as much as the next guy, but their greatest works as a band, commercially and critically, came after he was gone.
Old 09-27-07, 01:57 PM
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Obscured by Clouds flows much better than does Meddle and to me is much closer to DSOTM than Meddle. But I believe it was recorded after they had already started working on DSOTM.

The other thing that may have helped DSOTM is that they did work on it for a long time. They were playing it live in concert months before it was released. What must those audiences have thought. Going to see a band in concert and that band play an entire album in sequence that hasn't even been released yet.
Old 09-27-07, 01:58 PM
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Originally Posted by TheMadMonk
Fixed.

btw, I like "Piper" as much as the next guy, but their greatest works as a band, commercially and critically, came after he was gone.

It's silly to try and smear Barrett's character by calling him an LSD casualty. As with most people who get that bogus moniker, mental illness was already a part of the picture before they started dosing. LSD doesn't make people crazy, it just exacerbates pre-existing problems. That should be obvious in this particular case since the rest of Floyd took just as much acid as Barrett and they survived (more or less) intact.
Old 09-27-07, 02:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Giles
btw, what ever happened to the promised release of surround sound edition of 'Wish You Were Here?
Good question.

It does appear that after the Live 8 reunion that Waters and Gilmour get along "better" than they did before. I was hoping that even if they never toured or anything that they could at least get along well enough to agree to release some old stuff and do some stuff like a surround sound edition of more of their material.
Old 09-27-07, 02:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Out of Bounds
It's silly to try and smear Barrett's character by calling him an LSD casualty. As with most people who get that bogus moniker, mental illness was already a part of the picture before they started dosing. LSD doesn't make people crazy, it just exacerbates pre-existing problems. That should be obvious in this particular case since the rest of Floyd took just as much acid as Barrett and they survived (more or less) intact.
Smearing Syd wasn't really my intention. I wish that after Syd was kicked out, they had just changed their name, to start totally fresh. They could have their one album with Syd as Pink Floyd, then the rest of their stuff be under a completely different name, and thus judged on its own merits.
Old 09-27-07, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by TheMadMonk
Smearing Syd wasn't really my intention. I wish that after Syd was kicked out, they had just changed their name, to start totally fresh. They could have their one album with Syd as Pink Floyd, then the rest of their stuff be under a completely different name, and thus judged on its own merits.

Fair enough. And there are actually two Syd albums.

It's just a shame that he was unstable. Guy was a genius.
Old 09-27-07, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Giles
btw, what ever happened to the promised release of surround sound edition of 'Wish You Were Here?
Giles: Hi-Rez surround is, basically, dead. But that doesn't mean that a DTS version couldn't be released... If I had to guess I would say that the lack of interest from the general public in surround music killed it. My best friend and I often have this conversation about why surround music has never taken off... There's still hope though I guess, the Genesis catalog has Lamb Lies Down on Broadway due later this year. Perhaps WYWH has been mastered and canned.

FWIW, my favorite era of Floyd are the Ummagumma, Atom Heart, Meddle, Pompeii years.
Old 09-27-07, 03:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Buttmunker
What was it that caused "Dark Side of the Moon" to go through the roof in both sales and people's consciousness of the group, as opposed to the album that came before it? Was it a particular change in the music, or the singing, or what, exactly?
Dark Side of the Moon came out at the same time that the kids who weren't old enough to fully enjoy the 60s discovered pot.
Old 09-27-07, 03:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Josh-da-man
Dark Side of the Moon came out at the same time that the kids who weren't old enough to fully enjoy the 60s discovered pot.

So, it's pot that makes the album good? Okaaay.
Old 09-27-07, 04:27 PM
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so what do you think of 'The Final Cut'? (an album which I personally like alot).
It's a good album, but I don't think of it as a Pink Floyd album so much as Roger Waters featuring Pink Floyd. (Similar to how "Burning from the Inside" is more of the first Love and Rockets album than the last Bauhaus.)
Old 09-27-07, 05:51 PM
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The four albums in a row by Pink Floyd (DSOTM, WYWH, Animals, The Wall) is (IMO) one of best runs by any band.

BTW, a few months ago, I stumbled across this little story about Syd Barrett's visit to the recording of WYWH. Even though I'm a long-time Floyd fan (even still have all of their albums on LP), I never knew this Syd Barrett episode was the inspiration for two things in the film version of "The Wall" (specifically, the "shaving of all hair" scene and the "unnoticed burning of fingers with a cigarette" shot).
Old 09-27-07, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by dhmac
The four albums in a row by Pink Floyd (DSOTM, WYWH, Animals, The Wall) is (IMO) one of best runs by any band.

BTW, a few months ago, I stumbled across this little story about Syd Barrett's visit to the recording of WYWH. Even though I'm a long-time Floyd fan (even still have all of their albums on LP), I never knew this Syd Barrett episode was the inspiration for two things in the film version of "The Wall" (specifically, the "shaving of all hair" scene and the "unnoticed burning of fingers with a cigarette" shot).

Wow. No kidding? You didn't know that? I'm amazed to hear that a Floyd fan wouldn't have come across that story pretty early on. Must have been a sad moment for everyone involved. I've seen interviews with various people who were there and they all say that it was like the spark had gone out of Syd's eyes. Tragic.
Old 09-27-07, 09:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Giles
so what do you think of 'The Final Cut'? (an album which I personally like alot).
IMO:

1. The Wall
2. Dark Side of the Moon
3. Wish You Were Here
4. Meddle
5. The Final Cut

Animals would be six, the earlier stuff would follow suit, then the last two albums, which let's be honest, kind of sucked.
Old 09-28-07, 04:45 AM
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I'll see you on the dark side of the moon.............


WOW.

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