Having been a massive fan of all things Pink Floyd for most of my adult life, on Saturday I was really excited to be heading for a concert by Think Floyd, one of the top British tribute bands featuring their music.
We’d originally been going back in the autumn but the concert was postponed due to a band member’s ill health, and Saturday was the re-scheduled date. We’d never seen Think Floyd before and weren’t quite sure what to expect, but boy, was it worth the wait!
The concert took the unusual path of playing at least one track from each of Pink Floyd’s fifteen studio albums, from The Piper at the Gates of Dawn all the way to The Endless River. Along the way the band visited some of the iconic tracks (‘Comfortably Numb’, ‘Breathe’) but also played some less well known stuff – so much so I’d never heard one or two tracks before.
The four main musicians were perhaps a little less comfortable with the earlier music, with its heavy folk influence courtesy of Syd Barrett. But once they got onto ‘One of These Days’ from Meddle they suddenly hit their stride, and went from playing cover versions of Floyd tracks, to recreating with meticulous detail the whole Floyd sound and experience. And when they got onto Dark Side of the Moon, from which they played pretty much the whole of the first side, they were a revelation. Even better, their rendition of ‘Great Gig in the Sky’ was just brilliant – the best I have heard, anywhere including Floyd’s own concerts, with the exception of the original. Most modern versions include two separate vocalists due to the sheer complexity of the track, but the young lass singing here managed it on her own, note (and perhaps more importantly, emotion) perfect, and got a standing ovation for her efforts.
And I was absolutely delighted when they also treated us to ‘Brain Damage’, one of my favourite tracks and the inspiration behind ‘Raise the Blade’!
Of course, they aren’t Pink Floyd and nobody but Pink Floyd ever will be. The show also suffered very slightly, in my opinion, from a tiny (if immaculate) venue with a small stage, which couldn’t live up to the massive stadium concerts Floyd themselves put on. If nothing else, there was no space for an inflatable pig – or any other sort of animal! But they were a very, very close second, and since Floyd themselves rarely-to-never perform together (all the more so since the death of keyboardist Richard Wright), it’s a wonderful way of experiencing their music, live, all over again. We would definitely recommend Think Floyd, and definitely go to see them again ourselves. And it tickles me er, pink, to be able to say that.