Pink Floyd – Live at Wembley Empire Pool – November 16, 1974 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –
Pink Floyd this weekend, during one their four nights at Wembley in 1974. Collectors and fans no doubt have this concert as its been available in various formats over the years. This one I’ve had since 2012 and it is considered one of the best sounding of the band during this critical period in their careers.
When Syd Barret left Pink Floyd in 1968, it put the band at something of a crossroads, musically. They had long been considered one of the cornerstone experimental bands, fueled by Barret’s surreal and psychedelic songwriting and an almost legendary stage presence. But by the time Barret left, Psychedelia was losing popularity, and the band hadn’t really made serious inroads into the U.S. which is a major market for any band looking to secure some commercial importance. By the time their second album, Saucerful of Secrets was released, the band did manage to grab the FM Underground audience and from that a base started to slowly build.
It’s interesting to consider some five years had gone by between Saucerful of Secrets and Dark Side of The Moon, which would be the turning point in the band’s career. But just prior to that, during the years of introspection, some glimpses of the future surfaced, certainly by way of the two soundtrack Albums that came out during those years. Albums that have gone mostly unnoticed except by fans and those interested in diving into Pink Floyd’s history. More and Obscured By Clouds are two albums to dig out and revisit if you haven’t already.
This concert features much of what became signature pieces from the mid-70s onwards – still sprinkled with bits from Atom Heart Mother and some works in progress to show up in future albums, it features a band right at the brink – right at the turning point. Lucky that it sounds so good because it only adds to the historic nature of this concert.
If you haven’t heard this one before, or if you are just getting introduced to Pink Floyd, there’s some good stuff here – and it would be a good idea to grab some headphones and dive in for the next 2 hours.
It is the weekend, after all.
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