By the time of The Wall, the Roger Waters machine was in full motion. Fueled by the previous successes of The Dark Side Of The Moon, Wish You Were Here, and Animals, this double LP set formed an ambitious rock opera that elevated the Pink Floyd machinery further. Its arrival during a time of great Rock and Roll upheaval with Punk making statements everywhere and New Wave gaining ground seemed to help stabilize the kind of Rock that Pink Floyd (and other bands of the ’70s) created.
This latest update of the Pink Floyd catalog, much more ambitious than ever before, placed high emphasis on the entire Pink Floyd package. The recreation of the collective sets to provide stylized new remasters and packaging exclusives reached into the Pink Floyd machine and broke new ground with the addition of demos and glossy booklets.
On the new remaster for the Experience Edition of The Wall (2012), the music is shiny, demanding, and representative, and wonderful. But we expected that.
The packaging and musical treasures found on disc three make for a more compelling reason to pick up this (or one of the more illustrious editions available). Some of the tracks on the Work In Progress disc are wonderful to have. “The Doctor”, which soon became “Comfortably Numb”, as well as all of the beginnings of much of The Wall including songs that never made the cut.
The 28-page glossy stock booklet contains the lyrics written in the same font found on the original album. The spirit of the album is found in the artistic display of the booklet. The CDs are housed in a digipak with wallet-styled casing. My favorite? “Mother.” It wraps up the entire fear of the government in a set of frightening words that hold as true today as the day they were presented on The Wall.
Personally, I have felt The Wall to be a bit too much. If it were a single LP of songs, the album would have been beyond perfect. Still, there are many tracks that complete this magnificent story of corruption and fear. Waters lyrical observations meet his musical compositions head-on and result in (as they always have) statements of importance. Waters can see things. His gift lies in his ability to make a great song that tells his thoughts, often matching our own.
The band possessed the gift to be musically in touch with Waters, even if The Final Cut (which I liked) wasn’t up to the par that we were accustomed to from Pink Floyd and left the band with an unsatisfying swansong from such an important band.
I’m not sure that anything can get better than these reissues.
Release Date: February 28, 2012