Pink Floyd
Relics


4.0
excellent

Review

by Thomas Bambaataa Ghidrah Towers USER (67 Reviews)
October 27th, 2005 | 23 replies


Release Date: 1971 | Tracklist


Fun Floyd Fact 40044:
Pink Floyd had put out a compilation record only 4 years after their debut.

Fun Floyd Fact 40045:
That compilation record is Relics

After their first #1 album, and first album to achieve Gold status (the much hated Atom Heart Mother), EMI records jumped at the chance to milk the success. Despite having only two hit singles, not releasing any since 1968, they put out Relics. EMI were smart however, as to not label it as a Best Of or Greatest Hits, because really, they are only two as said before. Pink Floyd's success would be super sized two years after with the ridiculously successful Dark Side of the Moon, and continue as one of the Rock powerhouses of the 70s. But before all that mega sensation mumbo-jumbo, Pink Floyd were still a fairly experimental band with roots tracing back to the psychedelic scene and R&B. Not having matched the success of their first singles with follow-ups, Pink Floyd stopped doing singles. As they ventured into questionable musical territory, they would still hint at influences from their original front man Syd Barrett. Relics covers everything in their career at the time, and while it's not a Greatest Hits record, it's certainly better than Echoes: the Best of.

This album is a source of many goodies. It contains some B-Sides from Floyd singles, which are pretty much impossible to get a hold of. That would include the infamous favourite live staple Careful with that Axe Eugene, Pink Floyd flexing their experimental biceps all the way, the vein of avant-garde bulging through. Starting as a relatively quiet blues song with an ominous feel, it builds up as the lanky bassist Roger Waters starts whispering things. The climax reveals itself, all the instruments burst manically as Waters lets out bloodcurdling screams. A classic early Floyd song, why? Well, I don't know really. It's the only studio version available anywhere on a Pink Floyd CD (though it's better live.) Another rare treat is Biding my Time, the most Blues-driven Floyd song ever. A stripped down Blues tune that ends with a great trombone and guitar solo. Keyboardist Richard Wright is said to be playing the trombone, but it's still debated to this day by people with no lives.

Relics is solid enough to be a Floyd album, every song here is good. But the obvious absence of Syd Barrett on some tracks would ruin the illusion, the variety in music however wouldn't really matter, as the Floyd were known to make musically disjointed albums at that time. Three of the songs are Barrett's, two of which are Floyd's hit singles (said many times before by now) Arnold Layne and See Emily Play. Both are whimsical psychedelic Britpop songs, relatively poppy and coherent compared to later Barrett stuff. The other is the result of too much acid and a childishly creative imagination, Bike is a jangly, incredibly funny song with strange sound effects and even stranger lyrics:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bike
I know a mouse and he hasn't got a house
I don't know why I call him Gerald
He's getting rather old but he's a good mouse

I've got a clan of gingerbread men
Here a man, there a man, lots of gingerbread men
Take a couple if you wish, they're on the dish
And that is dedicated to whoever doesn't think Syd Barrett is a genius! Another song from the Barrett era is the psychedelic genre-defining instrumental Interstellar Overdrive, clocking at around 8 minutes and sums up the music of Floyd's debut Piper at the Gates of Dawn rather nicely. Barrett's influence shines on noticeably in tracks where he's long gone. The catchy Remember a Day captures the same sort of quirkiness innocence and is written by Wright. Cirrus Minor captures the space-rockiness of Barrett's songs in its solemn, ambient atmosphere. It's from Soundtrack to the Film More, a soundtrack made entirely by Floyd for an obscure hippy-era movie. Also from the soundtrack, The Nile Song totally contradicts Pink Floyd's signature sound at the time by being a complete Hard Rock song, Pink Floyd strayed from what they doing at the time for the soundtrack.

Well kiddies, if you wanted to sample Floyd's earlier stuff or get a handful of B-Sides and Rarities such as Paintbox or Julia Dream, here you go boys and girls. The long, psychedelic track Interstellar Overdrive probably won't be too appealing to everyone, it gets hard to listen to sometimes, even as big of a Piper... fan I am. It's disappointing that more B-Sides weren�t included, but again you have to remember EMI basically just grabbed a big bunch of chronologically varied songs and slapped an album together. This is recommended to any fan of Floyd's early stuff, and even a big fan of Floyd's "classic" era would enjoy this. Many of the songs foreshadow Floyd's future path. Relics is no ordinary compilation, it's actually enjoyable and original sounding. As for the Floyd Fun Facts, I'll be honest, they don't exist, but say it with the number accompanying it fives times fast.

Recommended Tracks
See Emily Play
Paintbox
Cirrus Minor
Biding my Time

Relics---------------> 4 stars



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Comments:Add a Comment 
pulseczar
October 27th 2005


2385 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

20th review :dances:

Zebra
Moderator
October 27th 2005


2647 Comments


Good review. "Bike" is pure genius along with the nine minute "Interstellar Overdrive."

Very good review, you described this comp. very well.

BlackDeathMetalJazz or really ANYTHING else please-
October 28th 2005


200 Comments


Yet another good reveiw.

Jawaharal
October 28th 2005


1832 Comments


I love see emily play.

Rocksta71
July 1st 2006


1023 Comments


I second that, a real floydian classic!

cjstunna
July 2nd 2006


119 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I third that and raise you "Careful With That Axe, Eugene"!

Jim
July 5th 2006


5110 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

See Emily Play is just delicious. Always been a favourite. I love Remember a Day too. Rick shines big time there.

Rocksta71
July 9th 2006


1023 Comments


Yeah, I rate that one too, it's the best track off a saucerful of secrets.

CognitiveVertigo
October 28th 2006


32 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I absolutely love Interstellar Overdrive and Julia Dream...Syd Barrett was so amazing (RIP).

AnyColour74
October 28th 2006


1054 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

123^

Rocksta71
November 24th 2006


1023 Comments


Well written review, but I decided to my own one.

Jim
November 25th 2006


5110 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Was that "write" your own one? In which case, I await it with great anticipation.
Don't let us down now, you hear? :thumb:

Rocksta71
November 28th 2006


1023 Comments


OK, When I get a minute i'll write one.

Jim
November 29th 2006


5110 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

:lol:
Wicked

Waiting For The Sun
February 14th 2007


15 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

A must have...I also recommend "Live at Pompeii" if you really want to see them jam, it's breathtaking. There is another video called "London 68-69" or something close to it, there is a nice live performance of Interstellar Overdrive.

Jim
February 15th 2007


5110 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Yeah that's awesome. Better than the studio recording. By the way, for trivia's sake, your user name is my favourite song of all time.
That's if it's refering to the Powderfinger classic :thumb:

spoon_of_grimbo
February 15th 2007


2241 Comments


the songs iv heard off this have all been great, but i fail to see why people praise syd's lyrics on "bike."

they're random and childish. i have no problem with that, but there's nothing genius about them either, and if anyone other than syd barrett had written them, people wouldn't look twice at them.

MrKite
March 8th 2008


5020 Comments


In general people don't see the genius in childish things. They possess a lot of innocence and they have a really charming quality. Usually people loose touch with that childish side as they get older but obviously Syd didn't. When you listen to it the first few times, you have no idea what Syd will say because he always adds in those little lines like "but I borrowed it". While that may not explain why they're genius that's why I love them.

Alfonz
January 22nd 2011


9 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This album is worth it alone for the brilliant non-album singles "Arnold Layne", "See Emily Play", "Paintbox", and "Careful With That Axe, Eugene". "Julia Dream" is a good song, too, as are the rest of the songs on this compilation album. I think they should've waited a couple years so they could add song from "Obscured By Clouds" to help give it a bit more recognition, though. Underrated soundtrack album that is.

Conorman11
January 15th 2013


538 Comments


What the hell this is great. I wish I had heard it earlier.



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