Fat Old Sun
One of my favorite Pink Floyd songs, Fat Old Sun has an “easy summer day” kind of feel about it. It’s like a single moment of ecstasy surrounding one’s mind, in a period of life that seems to be far too abnormal to be experiencing.
There’s just something about live music that helps one appreciate the studio version even more. This one has an exceptional, more aggressive than usual solo and a really prominent and punchy bassline.
Fun fact: The bell sounds heard at the beginning and the end of the song were later used again in “High Hopes,” from The Division Bell and in “Louder than Words,” from The Endless River.
Wot’s… Uh The Deal
Wot’s… Uh The Deal is a very relaxing song, featuring great lyrics and solos by Wright and Gilmour. It’s a great track from a great album – Obscured by Clouds, which was recorded during, yes, during the recording of Dark Side of the Moon.
This song sounds even better with age, featuring Gilmour’s deeper tone, and an absolutely gorgeous piano solo from Richard Wright. The performance here has Gilmour on the pedal steel guitar, and the end of the song is a nice throwback to some of Pink Floyd’s early 70s songs, where the instrument was widely used, and to great effect.
If you’re thinking underrated Pink Floyd songs, this has to be one of the most unknown songs in their volume of work; the Morricone-esque trumpets in this song herald the dispositions of a ‘raving and drooling‘ Rick Wright. The time signature changes are smooth and purposeful, but it’s Wright’s almost nonchalant delivery of the lyrics really make Summer ’68 what it is.
You can’t listen and not be amazed.
Careful With That Axe, Eugene
It’s rare to find a band that can exemplify such emotion and make a song so eerie and unnerving without even the use of lyrics. Careful With That Axe, Eugene is pretty unique and ahead of its time, even by today’s standards. If released today, it might get drowned out by the multitudes of sludge in the music industry, but as one of the more esoteric Pink Floyd songs, it holds its place in the annals of psychedelic rock.
The strange vocal effects provide a beautifully frightening complement to the soft synthesizers, and the haunting, ethereal guitar. It is pure musical chaos, starting off with the quiet beginning, seguing into Roger’s primal scream and then descending into a strangely melodic cacophony, before quieting back down.
This is without doubt an incredibly strange piece, and we say that with the utmost respect.
This song also features the signature Roger Waters scream, variations of which also feature in Echoes, Sheep, and the Happiest Days of our Lives, to name a few songs.
Cymbaline is a masterpiece on par with Echoes. It’s haunting, captivating and awe-inspiring, with an atmosphere that is so floating and relaxing, that it’s really hard to describe.
It has a lot in common with some of the more creepy, darker side of Pink Floyd songs. It features great lyrics, and musically represents a sort of warm up to what would eventually become Brain Damage.
In our opinion, More easily rivals Meddle, and it is a decidedly more comprehensive and complete album. It’s definitely up among their best work featuring their pre-classical sound.
Us and Them
One of the more thematically juxtaposed Pink Floyd songs, everything about Us and Them is perfect, from Gilmour’s vocals and Dick Parry’s saxophone work. It’s a lovely song that also serves as a nice break in the middle of The Dark Side of the Moon, which is probably why it gets overlooked.
It slows everything down for the listener for a few minutes, before letting them dive back into the themes of insanity and madness. It really stands out from the album, and holds it’s own, even by itself. We still get massive chills during the crescendo into the chorus.
A perfect example of the softer side of Pink Floyd, “If” is presented as a proposition, rather than a question.
As far as Pink Floyd songs go, “If” could also be considered the beginning of the style that Waters would hone in on for the rest of his career. One can also hear lots of other songs in here, the most prominent being “Brain Damage”.
a simple “If I” followed by an “I Would, could, should.” Except on “Please don’t put your wires, in my brain, and will you still let me join in with the game?…both follow If I Go Insane…” Meaning this song is a light hearted gesture of things I’d like to do…if, (I weren’t so lazy and insane.) If is presented as a proposition, rather than a question. I think it’s not only a reflection on Syd Barrett, but a mockery of that entire counterculture that was ending in 1970. Hippies.
Wearing the Inside Out
The definitive introvert theme song, Wearing the Inside Out is one of the underrated highlights of The Division Bell. Rick Wright’s lead vocals had been conspicuously absent from Pink Floyd since Dark Side of the Moon, and it was great that they recorded one last Pink Floyd song with him leading vocals.
It features Dick Parry on saxophone, and presents a great example of how the band uses vocals/lyrics as an instrument along with the song, and not just as a medium to spread a message. In this song especially, they managed to weave the sounds of the lyrics into the very structure of the song.