Here Are Some Bizarre Facts About Pink Floyd’s Music

Sameera Ehteram
Pink Floyd’s first new album in 20 years is due in October 2014. Brilliant news indeed, but before one lays hands on the upcoming album, one has to revisit some of their groundbreaking songs.

Pink Floyd

The announcement came from band member David Gilmour’s wife Polly Samson.

Pink Floyd’s upcoming album, The Endless River is based on 1994 sessions, the year the band’s last studio album, The Division Bell, was released.

The band also confirmed the news:

For those who may not be aware, Pink Floyd is more than just a rock band. Their music is described as ‘progressive, psychedelic and distinguished by their use of philosophical lyrics, sonic experimentation, and elaborate live shows.’ No doubt, they are one of the most commercially successful and musically influential groups in the history of popular music. Their songs had symbolism and experimentation like none other.

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To say that their songs changed the history of music would not be an exaggeration. Here are some of their songs as an example:

See Emily Play, 1967

See Emily Play might just be completely based on a hallucination. Syd Barrett claimed to have woken up in the woods with a girl one night after a gig. No one knows if she was a real person or just a figment of his hazy imagination.

Dark Side of the Moon, 1973

This was a concept album with most of the songs revolving around a story or a theme. This is a contrast to most studio albums which just lay out a series of songs that are often unconnected or unrelated with the exception of the fact that they are on the same album. DSOTM was not only one of its’ kind but it also gave rise to a lot of speculation about the album's concept and meaning. The band gave partial explanations to some of the songs and the album as a whole, but for the most part they left it up to listeners to decide for themselves.

Shine On You Crazy Diamond, 1974

This is a nine-part composition written by Roger Waters, Richard Wright and David Gilmour as a tribute to former band member Syd Barrett. The symbolism and depth of this track can be seen with just the choice of the title which is an acrostic poem using the letters of his first name.

Another Brick in the Wall, 1979

From the album The Wall which itself is one of the most intriguing and imaginative albums in the history of rock music. It is full of symbolism, literary devices and themes. The song Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2 takes a stand against the way institutions stifle creativity in today’s classrooms. Waters, Wright, and Gilmour sing a choir of restless schoolchildren to rebel against the harsh and cynical treatment of their teachers. The album was also made in to a movie in 1982.

Comfortably Numb - 1979

Comfortably Numb is a 1979 single by Pink Floyd. The song comes from their epic concept album "The Wall."

There are many urban legends as to what "Comfortably Numb" is about. Naturally, due to the music of Pink Floyd being popular within the drug culture, there are many fans that wholeheartedly believe that the song is about the use of mind-altering substances. Stories are widespread that Waters has admitted to writing the lyrics while using drugs. There is also the belief that the song is representative of a psychological breakdown similar to that experienced by original founding member Syd Barrett.

Empty Spaces, 1979

In their track Empty Spaces Pink Floyd used backmasking to hide a message on their song. Gibberish is heard when listening to the song normally. When played in reverse a secret message is found which goes something like:

“-Hello, Luka… Congratulations. You have just discovered the secret message. Please send your answer to Old Pink, care of the Funny Farm, Chalfont.
-Roger! Carolyn’s on the phone!

 “Old Pink” at the “Funny Farm” may refer to former member Syd Barrett who had mental problems and was in a psychiatric hospital or Funny Farm.