Since September 2010, this blog has recorded the journey of this middle-aged man as I attempt to listen to all the music in my CD collection. CDs revisited in their entirety from start to finish - no skipping tracks, no shuffle. CDs only - no vinyl, no tapes, no downloads. And just as CD technology (and the album format itself) becomes obsolete. I'm no music critic, just a music junkie with too much time on my hands.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Pink Floyd - The Dark Side of the Moon (1973)


Note: the CD I listened to was the original CD issue (1984?), not one of the subsequent reissues.

Per my idiosyncrasies, the three following conditions must be met for listening to this album:
  1. It must be after 9 PM
  2. I must have a snifter of cognac on hand
  3. It must be heard on headphones
Check, check, and check.  Let's do this.

Ah, that's the stuff.  Never disappoints.

The legacy of this album is well-documented so I won't go into all that.  I can't pick out any one thing that I like best about this album, because it's the overall soft, lush sound that is so attractive to my ears.  It would seem Alan Parsons deserves as much credit as the band members.

Peak on the US Billboard Top 200 chart: #1

Tracks:  There's really only two tracks, aren't there?  Side one and side two.  I prefer what was side one, especially The Great Gig In The Sky.  Side two actually starts out with my least favorite track, Money, but the remainder rebounds quickly culminating with Eclipse that leaves me wanting more.


Personal Memory Associated with this CD:  Not having the kind of family members that would hip me to such things, I didn't hear this album until 1987.  And that's probably for the best.  I was visiting my buddy Richard and he had just purchased a CD player along with this CD.  Late one night after some cognac, he put this on, handed me some headphones and said goodnight.  My only previous experience with Pink Floyd had been limited to The Wall (the movie and the singles from the album).  Of course, I had heard about the album for many years and just figured this album was a stoner thing that I didn't need to mess with.

I had no idea what to expect, but I certainly wasn't prepared for what came over the headphones.  I sat in darkness as the experience washed over me.  At that time, the digital CD experience was new enough to my ears, but add all this sonic depth and I was a little overwhelmed.  I wouldn't say I loved it at first listen, but I was definitely intrigued.  As such, I had my own copy of the CD within 3 months.  I've never ripped it to iTunes because I want to hear the whole thing from start to finish under the conditions listed above.  Even when the local classic rock radio station plays Money, I immediately switch stations because I don't want to hear that song out of context.

1 comment:

  1. Nice ritual. Other than in this forum, have you passed it on to anyone?

    As someone who has neither imbibed nor inhaled since 8th grade [1979], I honestly don't think any sort of chemical could increase my enjoyment of this album. I've been enjoying the instrumental intricacies and sonic subtleties of this recording stone cold sober since I purchased my first copy of it in 1981. Since then, I've owned three copies/pressings on vinyl and five pressings on CD. When I acquire a new turntable, the double album 180g vinyl version of DSOTM will be my first purchase.

    Have also seen Floyd live twice sans Roger Waters but I've seen him twice live sans them so it all works out. One of the Floyd shows featured a performance of this album in its entirety, back before it became a thing.

    You didn't go into much detail about your experiences with The Wall album or whether DSOTM proved to be a gateway album, leading you to listen to more Pink Floyd. (Or even the Alan Parsons Project.) As a jazz lover, I'm curious about your thoughts on Wish You Were Here which is their most jazzy album to these ears.

    As for my own listening rituals habituals, I have two:
    1) my preferred pressing is the 30th Anniversary SACD and it is ripped into iTunes as a single lossless file and does not shuffle so it is there whenever I'm jonesing for it (the same goes for Wish You Were Here, The Wall and The Final Cut.)
    2) I prefer to lie down on my back, with my hands folded on my chest and my eyes closed when I listen to the album - always through headphones - though I have made two exceptions since we acquired The Blueberry (aka 2013 Passat with Fender sound system) and they were both transcendental experiences. Wish You Were Here was equally stirring and I'm planning an excursion soundtracked by The Wall before year's end.

    (This comment was originally littered with lyrical references before I thought better of it, went back through and removed them all.)

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