Anybody with a cool mum, dad or older sibling will no doubt have some Pink Floyd records in their collection. Known as a band which influenced past generations, they were most known for their psychedelic approach to pop in the sixties and seventies, when music, dancing and experimentation were wild n trippy! Which was later credited to Syd Barrett, as the other members never re-gained the coolness after he left!
For the first time, London’s V&A Museum, has dedicated a retrospective show to celebrate the band in all their glory. Entitled ‘Their Mortal Remains”, the show provides a complete audio and visual journey through the unique and extraordinary lives of the original band members, to the where they are today.
Starting out as a four piece- Syd Barrett, Nick Mason, Richard Wright and Roger Waters pioneered experimental pop, which was like no other. Popular with the masses, the original songs were social expressions of discontent and flicked their finger up to authority. Fuelled by experimental drug taking, the band were poster boys for the excesses that came with the fame (although they were middle class credible musicians!) However it wasn’t long until Syd Barrett dramatically quit, after experiencing one high too many in 1968….
Replaced by guitarist David Gilmour, the band then took on a much more sensible musical outlook, moving away from fickle pop songs, to longer ballads which wallowed in darkness and melancholy. The infamous album, ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ was released in 1973, and still sells 7,000 copies per week, which is an indication of how influential is still is all over the world.
As you make your way down a darkened corridor illuminated by a holographic representation of the pyramid prism from Dark Side of the Moon, you can hear the song via the supplied Bluetooth headphones which bring the static installations to life.
With the music becoming more musical, the great minds behind the band were still working in overdrive, and the exhibition incorporates the bonkers inflatable flying pigs and sheep from ‘Animals’ and sketches done by political illustrator Gerald Scarfe, designer of the infamous album ‘The Wall’. You can even have a go at remixing their classic tracks.
A totally immersive experience, this will inspire any fan or think they know it all! You get to hear some of the most astonishing music and iconic imagery of the rock era. Even if you are a second generation conformer, this exhibition is a no holds barred exploration of how a band lives, loves and makes music together- plus all the ugly bits!
Make sure you leave time for the highlight of the show when the band reunited for 2005’s ‘Live 8’ concert in Hyde Park, and you can lose yourself in the surround sound and image room listening to the extended version of “Comfortably Numb”.
Bands today could take note of making music for the masses, but there will never be another Pink Floyd!
Buy tickets here