THE BEST PINK FLOYD SONGS OF ALL TIME is an interesting proposition. Mainly because we tend to think of Pink Floyd as the definitive album rock band. So, THE BEST PINK FLOYD SONGS OF ALL TIME as a feature seems in appropriate. But once again think of THE BEST PINK FLOYD SONGS OF ALL TIME list as an introduction to Pink Floyd and perhaps that makes it more palatable.
A brief history lesson. Pink Floyd was founded by the mercurial Syd Barrett in London, with Roger Waters, Nick Mason and Richard Wright. Formed in the mid-60s, the band was at the forefront of the British psychedelic rock movement. Sadly, Barrett ended up a drug casualty and left the band in 1968 with David Gilmour drafted in to ultimately replace Barrett.
Like many of their peers, Pink Floyd would move from psychedelic rock into progressive rock, although their musical style was more based on the blues rather than classical music. The band would find phenomenal success in the 1970s and are at the moment one of the best selling rock bands of all time.
Varying my approach this time for THE BEST PINK FLOYD SONGS OF ALL TIME with a chronological listing rather than alphabetical order.
Let’s start at the very beginning. Floyd’s debut single when the madcap genius of Syd Barrett was the focal point. A psych-rock classic.
“See Emily Play”
Another psych-rock classic, Floyd’s sophomore single is probably even more influential than the debut. A delightfully deranged ditty.
The opening track of Floyd’s debut album, The Piper At the Gates of Dawn, would cement the band’s reputation as space rock pioneers. A big influence on David Bowie’s “Space Oddity”.
“One of These Days”
I bypassed three albums to get to Meddle (1971). Mainly because I believe that in the wake of Barrett’s departure, the band lost their way artistically and it was not until Meddle that Pink Floyd found their mojo once again, but this time with the brilliant guitar playing of David Gilmour.
An under-rated deep cut off Meddle. Folk-rock majesty.
Taking up the entire side B of Meddle, a track that pre-figures the likes of long form experimentation found on “Shine On You Crazy Diamond” and the tracks on Animals.
Dark Side of the Moon would be the band’s biggest selling album. A concept album about modern life with many of the individual songs memorialised as rock classics. The first Floyd song I ever heard. Mind well and truly blown.
A chart hit when released as a single in 1973.
“Us and Them”
Deep act classic.
“Shine On You Crazy Diamond”
I realise this is cheating, as this track is actually split into two on the actual Wish You Were Here album.
“Wish You Were Here”
Title track for what is probably my favourite Floyd album.
“Pigs on the Wing”
Very dark and political concept album with three long suites dominating the album. Ironic perhaps that this stripped down number is my favourite. Again, cheating here as this combines both parts.
How can any song be so depressing and uplifting at the same time?
The best Pink Floyd song? I think so. Here’s why.
“Two Suns in the Sunset”
The closing song on Roger Water’s last Floyd album, The Final Cut. Virtually a solo album. Don’t bother with the post-Waters Pink Floyd albums unless you are a completist.
THE BEST PINK FLOYD SONGS OF ALL TIME is done and dusted. You can use the list to determine which are the albums you might want to investigate further if Pink Floyd music is all new to you. Comments, please, at our Facebook page.
… still there’s more …