8 interesting facts about The Dark Side of the Moon you might not have known
The Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd is one of the most commercially and critically successful albums in the history of rock music. In some ways, it is a radical departure from the band's early style... If you think of The Piper At the Gates of Dawn (Pink Floyd's first album), it is a loosely connected set of shorter but more traditional songs.
The band's subsequent albums, such as Meddle, often contained long and extremely expansive pieces. You could say that they were like rock symphonies... "Echo" could stretch for 20 minutes!
The Dark Side of the Moon is very different from the rest of the band's works. In fact - the whole album consists of one big and incredibly mesmerising episode (broken into parts)... All songs harmoniously start and finish each other, and there is no break... The music from the album is like a constant and very measured movement! Listening to the album you feel something otherworldly, hypnotising....
But the splendour of "Dark Side of the Moon" is much, much more than just its structure. It lies in the songs themselves, in the verses of each of them: the purest beauty and incomparable expression of the human state of mind... Yes, it's an album about madness, but not only. In it lies the question: what does it mean to be human? What in our lives influences our deepest hopes and fears? What are our greatest sources of passion and fear? And how do they cause the madness that so often becomes a major theme of The Dark Side? It can rightly be said that The Dark Side of the Moon is at the peak of rock music as an art form.
The Dark Side of the Moon was special and very intimate for Pink Floyd... While working on the album, the band was focused and completely immersed in the idea. As a result - the record became their main musical masterpiece and the property of millions of listeners...
Let's take a look back at 8 of the most interesting facts about "Dark Side of the Moon".
1. The idea for the album started at Nick Mason's house.
At the end of 1971, Pink Floyd began to discuss the idea of their future album. For this purpose, the band gathered at Nick Mason's house. It was there that Waters got the idea and gave the other members a few ideas: the lyrics and motif to what eventually became known as "Time", as well as an interesting bass riff that served as the basis for "Money".
2. Originally the concept of the album was supposed to be about the pressures and stresses of modern life
All in the same Mason house, the idea of the pressures and stresses of modern life began to develop. The band discussed the fear of death, greed, and the mental imbalance that very often leads to insanity... When all these factors turned into a list, Waters got to work. He began writing lyrics for the new songs, building off the constructed outline of the album idea.
3. The full title of the album is "Dark Side of the Moon: Part for Different Crazy People"
The name Eclipse was also considered, but was not approved. Medicine Head had previously released an album called Dark Side of the Moon (in 1972). The record was not a success, so Pink Floyd decided to borrow such an interesting name for their new work.
4. The work on "Speak To Me" was painstaking. In many ways - because of the careful selection of sounds, which seem to dissolve into each other....
The composition "Speak To Me" was conceived as an overture to the new album. It was meant to give people a sense of what awaited them on the record... The piece was made up of fragments of each track, and they all seemed to dissolve into each other... For example, "Speak To Me" contains the sound of a heartbeat - a soft bass drum, much slower than the actual tempo of a normal human heart. There is also the sound of a giant piano, the sounds surrounding us all, played backwards... Unreal beauty!
5. The initial intro to "Time" was recorded in an antique shop
The clock sounds we hear at the beginning of 'Time' were recorded in a real antique shop by engineer Alan Parsons! Thanks to the variety of live clocks available there, the sound is three-dimensional and incredibly versatile...
6. The female vocals in "The Great Gig In the Sky" are by Claire Torrey
As for the song "The Great Gig In the Sky", the band thought for a long time who could give the song a gorgeous female vocal... The choice fell on Claire Torrey, who fully met the expectations of Pink Floyd members! Her sound was on the highest European level, although Claire herself was not satisfied with herself. She apologised for a long time that she had performed her part too powerfully (as it seemed to her). But the band were pleased, calling Torrie's vocals "fantastic".
7. The sound effects for the song "Money" were recorded at home
Those incredible sounds we can hear in the composition "Money" were recorded by Mason and Waters in their home studios! Among the variety of sound effects are a paper tear and an effect from the studio sound library that represented a cash register. The sounds were actually measured on tape using a ruler of equal length and then spliced together.
8. Paul and Linda McCartney can be heard on the album!
After recording the main tracks, Waters had the idea to record a series of questions on the subject of madness, death and violence... To record them and answer them (a mini-discussion, so to speak) he needed someone who had worked at Abbey Road but who was not a member of Pink Floyd. Among the recorded voices (though not used on the official album) were those of Paul and Linda McCartney!
To summarise - I would like to add: The Dark Side of the Moon is indeed a gem of rock music. The album stayed in the charts for an unimaginable time - 741 weeks! But more importantly, it has been imprinted in our hearts forever.