So, word comes out of the jolly U.K. that Pink Floyd will be reuniting for the big Live8 concert being held this summer. It’s not a true reunion, for Syd Barrett remains in the womb-like place where Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes are on their way to (start the arm flailing and cue the crazy-bird cackles). Nonetheless, it’s as close as we’ll get, and that lineup did put out some great stuff. None greater in my eyes than 1977’s Animals, their darkest, most bitter piece of work. Naturally, it’s not only my favorite Pink Floyd album, but one of my favorite 1970’s releases. A five song concept album in which our fellow man is reduced to a type of animal (pigs, sheep, dogs), the lyrics are biting and the music is murky, all making for an interesting and captivating listen. The middle three songs each run more than ten minutes (give or take) and the two bookend songs are each less than two minutes.
A desert-islander? It probably just misses the cut. But it is by far their most underrated piece of work and has stood the test of time for me – through high school, through a heavy bout of Animals-obsession during college (including a specific recollection involving a girl, too much beer, a single bed and cigarette breath – and it’s not what you’re thinking, pervs) and then a renaissance period over the past couple of years.
Now, if I were to be the one who dictated the set list for the Live8 reunion this summer, it’s a pretty simple call – I’d just write down the five songs that appear on Animals and let them go for it. It would be such a gutsy move and it would certainly satisfy a lot of their fans. Alas, I think we all know where this is headed – Wish You Were Here, Another Brick In The Wall, blah blah blah. The shit you can hear every day by tuning into your classic rock station. Ah, well…..a kid can dream, can’t he?