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Old 08-23-2015, 05:34 PM   #841
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Ummagumma (2/5)

I’m disregarding the live versions as part of the “album” and thinking only of disc 2, with the studio material. I understand these are separate compositions from each of the members in that iteration of the group, and you clearly sense it. They don’t fit together at all, and this is a pretty bad effort for an album. In a way, it works as a portrait of the period following Syd Barrett’s departure, when the band was trying to find its identity. Several Species of Small Furry Animals… was weird as fuck. Not sure what to think of it. Ummagumma is saved from total disaster by the Waters/Gilmour middle section. Grantchester Meadows was quite nice, and The Narrow Way suite was good, especially part 3 (hey, a normal song!). The Grand Vizier’s Garden Party is utter bullshit, though.
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Old 08-24-2015, 03:44 AM   #842
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Gump, you can probably guess which two songs were played live before Ummagumma's release.
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Old 08-24-2015, 08:55 AM   #843
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I could find references to The Narrow Way. I assume Grantchester Meadows was the other one?

Also, looking for Pink Floyd setlists online is a bit of a nightmare. Axver should expand the __gigs franchise.
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Old 08-24-2015, 09:27 AM   #844
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I regret not being the founder of setlist.fm - definitely wish I'd had that idea sooner. I'd had an idle thought that U2gigs' database could be used for other bands but never pursued the notion.
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Old 08-24-2015, 09:30 AM   #845
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Yeah, Grantchester Meadows and The Narrow Way (Part 3) were part of The Man and The Journey suite. The Narrow Way (Part 1) was also played at an early BBC session, called "Baby Blue Shuffle In D Major."

They got a lot better at naming tracks as time went on.

For the anoraks, Sysyphus was actually performed live in 1970. Warning, this only somewhat approaches actual music.

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Old 08-24-2015, 09:38 AM   #846
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Axver View Post
I regret not being the founder of setlist.fm - definitely wish I'd had that idea sooner. I'd had an idle thought that U2gigs' database could be used for other bands but never pursued the notion.
Your UI just works really well. Setlist.fm is good, but it is so freaking slow.

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Yeah, Grantchester Meadows and The Narrow Way (Part 3) were part of The Man and The Journey suite. The Narrow Way (Part 1) was also played at an early BBC session, called "Baby Blue Shuffle In D Major."
Yeah, those are the only two songs off that album that I would want to hear live. I can't imagine Sysyphus being any good, but will check it tonight.
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Old 08-24-2015, 10:56 AM   #847
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I regret not being the founder of setlist.fm - definitely wish I'd had that idea sooner. I'd had an idle thought that U2gigs' database could be used for other bands but never pursued the notion.
I can't even imagine how much that must suck to know you could've been the one to have that idea. You were like, right there.

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Your UI just works really well. Setlist.fm is good, but it is so freaking slow.
Also, this. Setlist.fm has, to my knowledge, never undergone any kind of makeover whatsoever, either. It's in desperate need.
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Old 08-24-2015, 03:32 PM   #848
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Atom Heart Mother (3/5)

Alright, so this is starting to go into territory that I enjoy more. Mostly because it balances their over-indulgent tendencies with, to put it simply, good songs. Summer '68 was the big highlight (I'm not so sure it's a best song contender as some have argued, but it clearly stands out in their pre-Meddle work at least), and If is almost as good in my opinion. The suite hints at some of their talent for composition, but it still lacks direction. Honestly, in parts it almost feels as though their approach here was “hey, let’s make sure we use every last inch of this vinyl” (which, to be fair, is generally the problem I have with prog rock). As in Ummagumma, the whole is not greater than the sum of the parts in this record, but the folksy second half is a refreshing sound for them (which I did not expect to hear).
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Old 08-24-2015, 08:06 PM   #849
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I've long wished setlist.fm had u2gigs' interface. IT's horrible.
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Old 08-24-2015, 08:34 PM   #850
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I can't even imagine how much that must suck to know you could've been the one to have that idea. You were like, right there.
There were more than a few times I thought that it would be great to use U2gigs' design for other bands, but it was always in the context of a specific band (on the private backend I even have a section with Alpine's setlists, which I've subsequently copied over to setlist.fm). I don't know if I would have ever thought it make it in a wiki style, and without that it would've required serious time and connections to build it up. When it comes to any project of mine, I'm a bit too much of a control freak and a bit too little trusting of other people to not fuck it up to have been willing to open it for anybody to edit.
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Old 08-24-2015, 11:30 PM   #851
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Meddle (3.5/5)

So, this was quite an interesting mess. Things heard on this album: sonar pulses, You Will Never Walk Alone and other soccer chants, Seamus the dog, bird noises, a blues, wind noises, synthesized screaming. I thought One of These Days was excellent. I guess Flaming Lips’ Embryonic borrowed a lot from this song. The best feature in this song, and the album as a whole, is that Gilmour’s guitar is now pretty up front and driving a lot of the music here.

A Pillow of Winds (that’s a great song title, by the way) could fit right next to If in AHM. Fearless was great, but the chants were a bit disruptive. Then we get to San Tropez, which is very weird in the context of this album. Almost a pure pop song. Note entirely sure what they were thinking (even though the song is perfectly fine). And followed by a 12-bar blues.

Echoes was the first proper suite/very long song that I enjoyed in their catalogue. I think it’s engaging throughout rather than a mere pointless exploration. The guitar riff is reminds me so much of the Phantom of the Opera opening notes. I’m thinking Lloyd Weber borrowed liberally from this song. All in all, lots of good songs, but again I got left with the feeling that it wasn’t that cohesive. The middle section really stuck out as out of place.

I feel that 3.5 may be underselling it a bit, but the lack of cohesiveness prevents me from giving it a 4.
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Old 08-24-2015, 11:38 PM   #852
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Hmmmm. I think Meddle is at the very very least a 4. I agree that San Tropez and Seamus are out of place and ruin the flow and so you end up with a record that seems uncohesive but outside of that I think it’s really well put together and a tremendous (and often calm) listen. One of These Days is tremendous, and A Pillow of Winds and Fearless are both beautiful folksy tracks. I don’t think the chants are disruptive at all - they don’t come in until the song is over anyway, and I think they add to the album’s atmosphere, particularly when leading into Echoes instead of San Tropez. Echoes is definitely a very strong achievement, I love that thing from start to finish. There’s also a 30-second guitar part around the 18-minute mark that is up there with my favourite moments in music. Wish it was longer.
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Old 08-24-2015, 11:38 PM   #853
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I just remembered that my ebay username is eiderdown71.
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Old 08-24-2015, 11:51 PM   #854
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There's a great Roger Waters quite about Phantom of the Opera. "Bastard. It probably is actionable. It really is! But I think that life's too long to bother with suing Andrew fucking Lloyd Webber."
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Old 08-24-2015, 11:53 PM   #855
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Yeah, that guitar part in Echoes was really good. I'll revisit the grades when I have finished with their discography. It helps having a context of the artist's overall work. But yeah, I think most of the songs here are pretty good to great, but it was really a matter of flow (which I think is pretty crucial for a group putting out long suites and known for their ambition).
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