If there ever was a time in history, or will be in the future, when musicians will be known and acknowledged for changing the course of human consciousness, Pink Floyd deserves a special place there, unarguably. Four students by the name Syd Barret, Nick Mason, Roger Waters, and Richard Wright formed the band in the year 1965, in London. The band gained popularity in London’s underground music scene, and later by releasing a full-length album. In the following years, David Gilmour (the band’s future leader) joined, and Syd Barret left.
Over the course of decades, Pink Floyd has released more than 10 studio albums. Out of which, ‘The Wall’, ‘Dark Side of the Moon’, and ‘Wish You Were Here’ remain some of their best-selling albums, and music history’s most inspiring and contributing albums. These albums have been recognised as works of art that had, and still have a monumental impact on pop culture around the world. With themes like, society, education system, political system, personal struggle, war, death, and paranoia, Pink Floyd created this electric, atmospheric, far-reaching wake-up call, very much like their music, for people to think as individuals. This was a call to fix our society, education system, relationships, and eventually, ourselves. These themes can be seen individually in the albums of the band.
From 1994 to 2014, the band was silent due to enmity arising from creative differences. In 2014, after nearly two decades, David Gilmour and drummer Nick Mason reunited to announce the group’s last official album: The Endless River. It is a tribute to Richard Wright, the band’s keyboard player who was asked to resign during the recording sessions of the album, The Wall in 1979. Richard Wright died in 2008, leaving behind a legacy of his contributions in one of history’s most popular bands. The Endless River is a musical collage of unused pieces recorded by Gilmour, Mason, and Wright for their 1994 album, The Division Bell. The album carries the reassuring sound of Pink Floyd. Intense guitars, soothing atmospheric sounds, and minimal vocals give this album a cinematic feel to it. Pink Floyd is perhaps one of the first, and very few bands that are known to have created a sound of their own. It is not uncommon to hear someone say, “Oh! This band sounds a lot like Pink Floyd” in conversations about bands and their music. Sadly, The Endless River is the end to the legacy of over 5 decades. And for most fans, it is a heart-breaking, deeply saddening fact that seems difficult rather than easier to accept as time goes by.
But, even if The Endless River marks the end of Pink Floyd, it may not be the end of the genre. Porcupine Tree, R.E.M., Radiohead, and the Alan Parsons Project, are some of the progressive rock, psychedelic rock bands that might be reminiscent of the ethereal sound of Pink Floyd.
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