. . .
Hi, I’m Jim and I have a confession to make. I’m a big fan of Pink Floyd and I don’t like The Wall.
Oh sure, when it came out, I bought it just like everybody else, and was jealous that Larry got to go see the tour and enjoyed a lot of the songs on the radio. And I also appreciated the fact that it was comprised of a bunch of short songs instead of epics.
But. I. Just. Didn’t. Get. It.
Well, that’s not true: The Wall is incredibly plot-driven, building on the great “Which one’s Pink?” joke from “Have a Cigar” — a joke that had more wit than this entire record — and Roger Waters was more WYSIWYG as a lyricist than he’d ever previously been, and even if he wasn’t, every single rock magazine was explaining it to me in great deal. So I got it. I just didn’t give a shit.
For the most part, I thought the music was simultaneously shrill — oy, that ridiculous “Trial” song — and unremarkable, and to me, it was all incredibly underwhelming.
But 30 years ago, I was pretty much the only one: The Wall was a worldwide smash that has sold a zillion copies, and spawned both a film — which I’ve never seen — and a hit single that I hated in 1979 and is still a instant channel-changer to this day. It might have been that fucking “Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2” which broke me, even as an alienated high school senior. Fuck a children’s choir.
Which isn’t to say that The Wall didn’t have its charms — there are five songs from it currently on my iTunes playlist — but all these years later, the only one which rises to Certain Songs status is the David Gilmour-driven “Comfortably Numb.”
Featuring a lovely, string-laden chorus and not one, but two Gilmour skyrocket guitar solos, “Comfortably Numb” fit within the concept of The Wall without completely succumbing to it. I guess.
“Comfortably Numb” at Live 8, 2005
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