Saturday, January 30, 2010

Pink Floyd, The Wall Part 1

By Steve Coyne

Pink Floyd's The Wall is one of the great musical accomplishments of our time. The Wall is like a psychological snap shot of Roger Water's entire life, complete with Roger's friends, family and school teachers. Roger claims that the album was inspired by an incident during which Roger became angry with the drugged out and masochistic audience in front of him and went so far as to spit at one audience member in particular. The true inspiration for The Wall runs much deeper. In order to reach an understanding of The Wall, one must consider it from several different angles.

The character, Pink is attached to objects that remind him of his father, and increasingly throughout the movie he becomes more and more dependent on objects rather than the people with whom he cannot nurture positive relationships. In order to deal with such an excess of negative stimuli, he constructs a "wall" which protects him from suffering further emotional harm. He only obsessively relates to his T.V. set and other objects and possessions.

In The Flesh?

The first song on the album. It starts innocently playing the song Outside the Wall, with a very scratchy record in the background. The words "we came in" can be heard just as the first song begins. This may seem odd at first listen, but if we go to the very end of the work, we can hear the words "isn't this where"? completing the circle and giving some insight in to the album.

The silence is interrupted by the first power chord and answer on the organ. The first minor 3rd motif can be heard over a military style drum. Fans are shown stampeding the stadium while cuts are made to soldiers in battle, part of Pinks obsession with his father as a soldier.

Roger is drawing a parallel between a fanatical rock audience obeying their idols and soldiers who blindly follow the orders of their military commanders. Police are shown brutalizing and harassing the audience which is drawn from an incident at a Pink Floyd concert. This shows Roger's true feelings that Rock audiences are sadistic and masochistic. The musical /lyrical irony are evident in Pink's sarcastic tone throughout the first verse of "In the Flesh?"

The contrasting happy music only adds to the sick tone of the lyrics with a 50's style doo wop backdrop reminiscent of Sha na na. Images like, "behind these cold eyes" and claw your way through this disguise challenge us sarcastically to try to get through to him, through the Wall.

So ya
Thought ya
Might like to go to the show
To feel the warm thrill of confusion
That Space Cadet Glow
Tell me is something eluding you sunshine
Is this not what you expected to see
If wanna find out what's behind these cold eyes
You'll just have to claw your way through this disguise

Steve Coyne is a Rock/Jazz/Fusion guitarist living in the New Haven, CT area. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Berklee College of Music and a Master of Science degree from Western Connecticut State University. Currently, Steve is gigging regularly in cover bands throughout the Fairfield/ Westchester area. Steve is also writing and recording music with his original band FREERIDER. FREERIDER will be one of the first bands featured in their own video game on Rock Band 2/ Rock Band Network.

Article Source:,-The-Wall-Part-1&id=3270168

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