3 of 3 thought this review was well written
Released July 1969
If you only have Echoes: Best of, chances are you've never heard of this Floyd album. Why? Because Pink Floyd don't even regard as an actual Pink Floyd album, you'll notice More doesn't really fit in with the musical path Pink Floyd were taking at the time. After Syd Barrett, original guitarist/singer/creative force, left Pink Floyd less than 12 months from the psychedelic classic debut Piper at the Gates of Dawn, the new Pink Floyd (Barrett replaced by Gilmour) were struggling to find a new way to go on. 1968-1970 signaled a Floyd transition, members of Pink Floyd even called it a creative downtime. In that time Pink Floyd released their sophomore release (A Saucerful of Secrets), this soundtrack, the half live half solo project Ummagumma, and the unwanted child of the Floyd albums Atom Heart Mother (though I like it). All four, were experimental, progressive and pretentious to a certain point. Still, many songs off More were miles away from ASOS and Ummagumma.
More wasn't part of Pink Floyd's transition, it was seen more of a side project. The actual movie bombed, just another "we're hippies, let's do drugs" 60/70s type of movie. The director asked Pink Floyd to make a soundtrack that wasn't their style and in a small amount of time. They went for it and came up with this, half of it instrumental. Most of the instrumentals so clearly intended for the movie that they don't stand on their own.
More opens with Cirrus Minor, a spacy ambient song, which begins as a somber acoustic song and uplifts more with an organ outro. This outro is quite similar to the final part of the classic Pink Floyd instrumental A Saucerful of Secrets. Roger Waters (Bassist, Vocalist) sings on this song, losing the quirky, scowling voice he used on earlier Floyd songs and uses a mature, ominous voice.
The mood quickly changes to the most hard rocking song Pink Floyd has ever done, The Nile Song. Complete with power chords and cringe-worthy lyrics. David Gilmour (Guitarist, Vocalist) sings on here, using his signature blue-rock voice. This is also the first time (chronologically) you hear a Gilmour solo! The Nile Song is quite a groover of a song, though heavy and wild as well. Ibiza Bar is based on the same chord progression, but is less heavier, without Nick Mason's manic drumming, and with Richard Wright's (Keyboards, Vocals) mellow organ and backing vocals. Ibiza Bar still manages to be a hard rocker aswell, but more melodic, more Floydish than the Nile Song.
You want to know where emo started? It started with... The Crying Song! Maybe not, it's more of a lullaby than a 'crying song'. It sounds like Cirrus Minor but more cheerful, but the same sort of serious vocals and acoustic guitar, with an innocent sounding xylophone coming in a bit. The Crying Song ends with a sad sounding guitar solo. The whole song reminds me of the pastoral songs that Pink Floyd did in Atom Heart Mother and Meddle.
After the short, fierce drums and organ/piano dominated instrumental Up the Khyber (which sounds like the middle section of the instrumental A Saucerful of Secrets), two hardcore Pink Floyd fan favourites come. Green is the Colour is the closest to the ballad, but it leaves you a bit confused after the line "Green is the colour of her kind". This is also a pastoral, peaceful song with a cheery piano with flute solo. Cymbaline comes after, which definitely highlights Gilmour's great voice. It's piano dominated with some acoustic guitar and bongos. The lyrics seem to be about a movie star named Cymbaline, but, like many early Floyd songs, the lyrics fall apart somewhere around the second verse. If you thought Wish You Were Here was the first time David Gilmour did a vocal solo (da doo doo...) you're wrong, it was in Cymbaline! The song ends with a sort of out of place organ solo, live (both Green is the Colour and Cymbaline were played a lot live in 69-70) this solo was ridiculously extended.
After Cymbaline the album does downhill, with Ibiza Bar the only song with vocals left. The instrumentals aren't very interesting and are the main reason More has been cast aside. The notably bad ones would be Party Sequence, Quicksilver and A Spanish Piece. Party sequence is what you would expect at some 70s drug fantasy party- a bunch of bongos and flutes that lasts for a minute. Quicksilver is the most boring Floyd song EVER, it's prog rock without the actual progression; basically Richard's organ humming the same couple of notes for 7 minutes. A Spanish Piece is a novelty song basically, something you'd find off the White Album or something. It's a recycled typical 'Spanish' riff with some guy saying "pass the tequilaaaa Mannnnnuel" and some lip smacking. The Main Theme is a mystical sounding, organ driven instrumental, if you've heard the live disc of Ummagumma or have seen Live at Pompeii you'd know this song would fit in perfectly with them. More Blues is a short Jazz/Blues instrumental, pretty much a Gilmour Blues solo (improvisations of this song were played live a lot, too). The closing track Dramatic Theme is based on a bassline similar to the opener of Let There be More Light (ASOS), and is lead by David Gilmour's reverb laden slide guitar.
Overall More doesn't really flow or sound like a Floyd album, the instrumentals are rather simple, and most of the vocal songs aren't what a WYWH or PATGOD fan would expect. But most of the songs are good or great nonetheless. I don't recommend this album to someone who just wants to hear the 'classic' Floyd. It's better suited for people who like albums such Ummagumma, Atom Heart Mother, maybe even Meddle. I recommend getting the second soundtrack Pink Floyd did (still the same director) Obscured by Clouds first, if you're curious as to what these projects sound like.
Tracks worth listening to: Cirrus Minor, Ibiza Bar, Cymbaline, A Spanish Piece (really, you'll like this one :))
Soundtrack to the Film More-----> 3 stars