Pink Floyd this weekend. Recorded at the Fillmore in San Francisco on April 29, 1970. This is an interesting period of Pink Floyd that many people, particularly those who were first introduced to them during Dark Side Of The Moon, are probably not all that familiar with. This is a period of time where directions were changing and audiences were still on the fence. Ironically, this concert takes place a day before their appearance on Bay Area TV, via KQED in San Francisco, an appearance whose accompanying video has only recently been discovered and is currently available on DVD.
This is transition-era Pink Floyd. A few months ahead of Atom Heart Mother, which would lay the groundwork for their direction which would lead to Dark Side, but still there are leftover aspects from the Syd Barrett era – an era which would be hard to shake until Dark Side was released. They were well known in the UK, but still having a hard time breaking through in the States. When Atom Heart Mother was issued in October of 1970, it reached Number 1 in the UK, but languished at Number 55 in the U.S.
It’s easy to forget now, but Pink Floyd were a hard sell during their formative years and it would stay that way until 1973. They had fans in the U.S.; they were die-hard fans and underground FM was very much on their side. But mainstream was a different story. The 60s were over – and when you realize that only twenty days before, it was announced that The Beatles had officially broken up, there were a lot of things coming to an end, but a lot more was waiting in the wings.
There have been a few reports indicating that Pink Floyd were seriously considering calling it a day around this time. Whether that’s true or not, the definitive biography will have the answer. But like much of music during this time, it was looking for a direction and looking for its voice.
Luckily we had Pink Floyd around.
Enjoy. Play loud – you know the drill.