Pink Floyd – The Wall Review

by Bruno Brozović

Specifications and Details of Pink Floyd’s “The Wall” – LP Version

  • Release Date: November 30, 1979
  • Genre: Rock, Progressive Rock, Art Rock
  • Producers: Bob Ezrin, David Gilmour, Roger Waters, James Guthrie
  • Label: Harvest, Columbia
  • Format: LP
  • Additional Features: This LP version includes the original double album’s complete tracklist, presented with iconic artwork and liner notes that delve into the story behind the album’s conceptual development and its significance in music history.

Pink Floyd - The Wall Review

Audio Review of Pink Floyd’s “The Wall” – LP Version

Pink Floyd’s “The Wall” is not just an album; it’s a monumental piece of rock opera, meticulously crafted by the band and their production team. The LP version brings this ambitious project to life with impeccable sound quality that highlights the complex layers of music and storytelling. With its fusion of rock, progressive rock, and art rock, the album is renowned for its rich, atmospheric sounds and profound lyrics that explore themes of abandonment, isolation, and resistance.

Isolation and Genius: The Turbulent Creation of ‘The Wall’ Amid Personal and Professional Strife

At that time, Roger Waters, already quite emotionally worn out and filled with bitterness, built a wall around himself in the form closest to the literal one – in the midst of the punk explosion, that is, already in the middle of the full volume of its echo, he composed his most ambitious and egotistical work, a double conceptual album that accompanies a fictional biography rock star with diagnoses for any ambitious health care facility.

For the construction of the album “The Wall”, Pink Floyd served Waters only as an instrument, a vehicle, and a medium… you name it. For a long time now, the band has been stratified and torn apart by tensions among its members, but as a musical organism it was left to the creative flare-ups of the most hard-working in its ranks; Waters has been practically on his own since Syd Barrett penned his last ever flashier lines and notes. The self-centered hypercreative was at least so team-oriented that he offered the band two concepts, from which the remaining three chose this story about the musician Pink, while the second concept became Waters’ future solo debut “The Pros and Cons of Hitch-hiking”.

Defying Trends: How “The Wall” Challenged Conventions in an Era of Simplicity and Rawness

Regardless of accepting as the starting point Waters’ indignation at the audience’s failure to listen to what Pink Floyd had been conveying for years and constantly raising their production and technical skills, or simply the growth of artistic appetites, “The Wall” is a reckless beast of an album, a project that is cheekily audacious, as smug as it is hoarse from screaming in search for attention and acceptance.

I will underline once again: punk finally spat in the face of the audience to an increasingly alienated rock bestiary, and everything turned again towards simplicity, directness and rawness. And precisely because of all that, Pink Floyd (or should I say Roger Waters) decided to take their conceptuality and pretentiousness to the extreme.

How else to attribute a project that includes a double album composed mainly of fragments and hints of songs, an art-film that accompanies it and concerts that include building and tearing down a huge wall between the audience and the band on stage? Yes, Waters, in spite of every trend, every snort from the record company and mostly the bandmates’ stat in the studio, immortalized his feeling of alienation and frustration in his own way. In everything completely contrary to the aesthetics of punk, and yet, in the very defiance and uncompromisingness, one has to ask, how much is really the opposite?

Fragmented Narratives: Constructing “The Wall” Through Personal Trauma and Alienation

Composed, therefore, of episodes, that is, fragments, miniatures, stylistically incomplete songs and only a few full-blooded ones, “The Wall” tells the story of Pink Floyd, based, of course, on Waters’ personality. The boy lost his father early, who died in the 2nd St. war, he grew up with an overprotective, almost repressive mother and the tyranny of sadistic teachers.

Episode by episode, brick by brick, the traumatic childhood creates an imaginary wall by which the scarred Pink is gradually fenced off from the environment. Having become a game of fate for rock stars, things continue in the same direction. Love shipwrecks, drugs, growing introversion and a tendency to aggression and violence finally complete the wall by which Pink is completely alienated from her surroundings.

However, cocooned in his fortresses, he sinks into mental disorder and psychosis, reaching the stage where he imagines that he is a fascist dictator whose concerts become performances of violence and repression. Nevertheless, gnawed by a sense of guilt, driven by the too-deep furrows of his wounds, Pink ultimately brings himself before the court that judges him: the wall must fall!

Conceptual Contrasts: Exploring the Musical Spectrum of “The Wall” from Sketches to Masterpieces

A question for, I believe, the miserably few (if any) among you who have not listened to this album – can you imagine music, that is, songs that would faithfully convey this kind of story? From miniatures strictly in the function of the story (“Goodbye Cruel World”, “The Happiest Days of Our Lives”…) and dramatic one-minute pauses (“Bring the Boys Back Home”, “Stop”) to seemingly only sketches of songs (“The Thin Ice”, “Don’t Leave Me Now”, “The Show Must Go On”…) to full-blooded songs cut for singles (“Hey You”, “Comfortably Numb”) and the most ambitious item “The Trial” (exceptional succeeded, if you ask me), Waters’ soundtrack conveys its story convincingly, bombarding and relaxing, parading and just whistling. “The Wall” is by no means a great rock masterpiece, it doesn’t have that streak that would make it uniformly likable, as it often undermines itself with uncertain ambitions; but it seems to me that Waters himself did not have such an idea, no matter how huge and ambitious his project was.

Enduring Legacy: ‘The Wall’ as a Timeless Spectacle of Music and Melancholy

It is right there somewhere, in that gap, that I think the album’s lasting power lies (I would still characterize the film as less successful). “The Wall” is an intimate document turned into a spectacle, a plunging into darkness accompanied by fanfare, destined to become known despite all its poignancy. Few believed in success, but it was not absent. Thirty years after its creation, Waters performs it all over the world with a new band. He brings his capital work to Zagreb in a technically improved version.

Therefore, “The Wall” will tour the stages until its author decides to retire, and the music has long since entered the annals, with all the controversies, conflicting views and judgments. No matter which drawer you put it in, it’s indispensable when it’s inventory time. For the most skeptical, at least as the last truly valuable album of the Pink Floyd institution.

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