Labyrinths of Coral Caves
In recent stories about the forthcoming wave of deeeeluxe Pink Floyd reissues, the band is regularly referred to as “progressive rock.” Which I guess is technically correct, but always strikes me as a bit off. Where most prog bands were fleet forest nymph kinda deals, the Floyd was more of a lumbering leviathan. I don’t think any of the band’s members were virtuosos in the way that, say, Yes was. And that’s good news. At their best, Pink Floyd in the post-Syd era was a majestic, looming thing, the most psychedelic band ever. Case in point, this BBC recording from 1971, from right around the time Meddle was released. It’s long been my favorite Floyd bootleg, capturing Gilmour, Wright, Mason and Waters in full flight, as they tackle epics like “Fat Old Sun,” “Echoes” and “Embryo,” in many cases besting the studio versions. Plenty of funereal keyboards, spacey echo-laden guitar and plaintive vocals. You know, the good stuff. And then, after taking the audience to unexplored regions of the cosmos, what’s left to do but play the blues?