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My Floyd collection begins with “Atom Heart Mother” and I’m not that familiar with the earlier work save for the odd listen over the years with mixed feelings. I’ve always thought that if I had been a bit older I would have embraced the earlier work more, but whilst I enjoyed tracks like “Set the Controls….”, I found their more whimsical songs a turn off. So I embarked upon this live set with curiosity. I was won over from the outset and sat entranced through the set. Those whimsical numbers seemed to make more sense now, interspersed amid the much more meaty tracks wrapped up in their very retro psychedelic light show. The more progressive tracks were played with such enthusiasm and skill that they seemed fresh and vibrant. It was so refreshing to hear Floyd music played live that was not “Shine On…” or “Wish You Were Here”. I was particularly pleased to hear tracks from “Obscured by Clouds”, especially a blistering version of “Childhood’s End”. The one omission was my all-time favourite Floyd track, “Echoes”, but perhaps that is for the band’s future.
During the interviews there were several comments about them not wanting to come across as a tribute band. That never crossed my mind whilst watching the show. Apart from an original band member, there was Guy Pratt who has been with the band since the 1980s. Another band member worked closely with Rick Wright. The musicianship sounded great to my ears and the sense of fun they were having permeated the whole show. The revelation for me was Gary Kemp. I only knew him as a member of a New Romantic band I could not stand. Here he showed his musical versatility and in his interview he was very articulate and intelligent: a real pleasure to listen to.