guitar solo

1. Ministry – Just One Fix (Psalm 69: The Way to Succeed and the Way to Suck Eggs, 1992)

Brutal noise from Chicago’s industrial metal band. Album full of samples featuring famous movie quotes, for example Frank Sinatra’s “I wanna fix! Gimme a fix!” on this track. For those moments when you’re absolutely in no need of melody.

2. The Great Society – White Rabbit (Conspicuous Only in Its Absence, 1968)

The typical San Francisco’67 beat only kicks in after an elaborate Eastern instrumental intro, with snakes being hypnotized while the tempo grows. Grace Slick with her first band, which she founded together with her husband and brother in law after being inspired by The Beatles and… Jefferson Airplane, the band she would later join to record this song with for the second time. Live album that was recorded in 1966 and released in the aftermath of Airplane’s success. Truly recommended to people who like this latter band.

3. Fleetwood Mac – Go Your Own Way (Rumours, 1977)

California ten years later, from an obscure gig to a totally polished radio hit single. Lindsey Buckingham’s song, about his troubles with Stevie Nicks.

4. The Doors – The End (The Doors, 1967)

Travelling back again with the epic end piece of The Doors’ debut album. Molded into its ultimate version (the one that ended up on the record) after intensely touring the LA circuit and performing this song each time at the end of the gig. Covered by Nirvana, Nico and Homer Simpson.

5. Tortoise – Monica (Standards, 2001)

Nothing outstanding, but an album that’s worth to be played once a year. ‘Benway’ from the same album already came by, as it was one of the 10 tracks of the very first shuffle.

6. Pink Floyd – Let There Be More Light (A Saucerful of Secrets, 1968)

Awesome opening track, with the techno-intro being a showcase for Waters’ bass playing. Waters remained as Floyd’s  main songwriter on this album, but was still clearly inspired by Barett (and, appearantly, Sgt.Pepper’s).  New member Gilmour takes on the lead vocals during the chorus, and plays his first Floyd solo towards the end of the song. About time for a review of this album.

7. Animal Collective – Visiting Friends (Sung Tongs,2004)

Strumming acoustic guitars, and Devendra Banhart like he’s experimenting with a voice scrambler for the first time. Never paid much attention to this album because of the fascination for later work, from the band as well as Panda Bear.

8. Songs:Ohia – Hot Black Silk (Axxess & Ace, 1999)

Opening track from third album. Also one of the highlights, with Molina’s beautiful voice shining on this acoustic singer-songwriter song.

9. Madrugada – Hands Up / I Love You (The Nightly Disease, 2001)

Talking about impressive voices, what to say about about Sivert Hoyem? Norwegian alternative rock band that released some solid albums like this one and The Deep End (2005). And of course they released a live album with the legendary title Live at Trafalmadore, after the alien planet in Kurt Vonnegut’s novels.

10. Steely Dan – Peg (Aja, 1977)

Closing with this magnificent jazzy track from Steely Dan’s sixth  and best-selling album. Of course not recorded in a couple of weeks, the guitar solo in this song alone was attempted by no less than eight session guitarists.

1. The White Stripes – Little Acorns (Elephant, 2003)

Great song from White Stripes’ fantastic fourth, on which this is the traditional song with ‘little’ in its title. The famous spoken intro was contributed by American TV anchorman Mort Crim, whereupon the combo of the heavily tuned guitar and White’s threatening voice gives this track its great verses.

2. Belle and Sebastian – Dress Up in You (The Life Pursuit, 2006)

Polished indie pop from Belle and Sebastian’s seventh album, loaded with sunny melodies. The Life Pursuit reminds of all the good things that sixties and seventies pop had to offer, including great vocal harmonies and well-balanced instrumentals, like the beautiful horn section in this song. Personal favorite.

3. King Crimson – Moonchild (In the Court of the Crimson King, 1969)

Longest track on this epic album, preceding the title track on side two. The track can in fact be separated into two sections. ‘The Dream’ is a ballad with a prominent role for Ian McDonald’s mellotron (and lyrics provided by English poet Peter Sinfield), while the band completely starts to improvise on ‘The Illusion’. This is in fact nothing more than an elitist patchwork, making it the most disappointing part on the album.

4. The Flaming Lips – Race for the Prize (The Soft Bulletin, 1999)

From bearded men in a dark cellar to an explosion of confetti on main stage: the transition couldn’t possibly be more abrupt. Defining album for the band’s later sound and live performances.

5. Led Zeppelin – Heartbreaker (Led Zeppelin II, 1969)

Ultimate air guitar song, highlight on the notorious album and a crowd favorite at live concerts (including several improvisations). Interesting detail: the famous solo was recorded and added after the song was already ‘completed’, resulting in a somehow different guitar sound.

6. The Jam – The Place I Love (All Mod Cons, 1978)

From the third album of this late seventies mod revival band, with the title referring to this as well as the abbreviation of ‘all modern conveniences’, often used in housing adverts.

7. Guns ‘n Roses – 14 Years (Use Your Illusion II, 1991)

Best song (great piano playing) on the only GNR album that survived my record collection throughout the years. Never realized all these years however that it’s actually rhythm guitarist Izzy Stradlin on lead vocals. Stradlin had already left the band before the UYI-albums were released, after being detoxed from alcohol and drugs.

8. Radiohead – Paranoid Android (OK Computer, 1997)

Does this song need any more explanations? Maybe it’s still best described by Yorke himself, before the first time it was performed live: “If you can have sex to this one, you’re fucking weird.”.

9. Tool – Flood (Undertow, 1993)

Wow, the android perfectly fades into the guitar intro of this song. Subsequently the snoring bass tunes in and the drums brutally smash the song into your face. Penultimate song on this debut album, on my version at least, as most North American versions feature closing song ‘Disgustipated’ as track 69, after 58 silent 1”-tracks (you gotta love them).


The Olivia Tremor Control – Paranormal Echoes (Black Foliage: Animation Music Volume One, 1999)

And one more nineties track to close with. Just like last time, the Tremor Control makes it to the shuffle just on time, but with their second album this time. Love it or hate it.



Year: 1973

Genre: Progressive Rock

Preceded by: Obscured by Clouds (1972)

Followed by: Wish You Were Here (1975)

Related to: Radiohead – OK Computer, Genesis – The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway



What makes The Dark Side of the Moon one of the most famous albums ever made in the whole world? Its high critical acclaim by like everybody writing about rock music?  Its huge commercial success, remaining in the charts for 741 (!!) weeks from 1973 to 1988? Its cover, which became one of the most iconic images in rock history? Or the fact that this album strikingly described the changing mood of that time, leaving the spirit of the sixties (which had died in Altamont) behind and facing the Vietnam war and Watergate? Whatever it is, with the release of this album in 1973 Pink Floyd became the biggest progressive rock band in the world.

Pink Floyd gradually came into existence after architecture students Roger Waters and Nick Mason started to play in some bands together. Later on they were joined by Richard Wright and art student Syd Barett. As a successful psychedelic band (releasing some hit singles and debut album The Piper at the Gates of Dawn), they formed the British antithesis of American acts like Jefferson Airplane and 13th Floor Elevators. However, Barett’s mind became a little too psychedelic for the rest of the band to deal with, so he was gradually replaced by David Gilmour. Subsequently, Pink Floyd started to evolve towards a progressive rock band with long, experimental tracks and philosophical lyrics on the albums Atom Heart Mother and Meddle. The band also became famous for it’s innovative album artwork and elaborate live gigs, so in fact there was only one thing missing which would define Pink Floyd as the biggest prog rock act in town: a concept album.

It was Roger Waters who came up with the idea of making an album about things that will drive people into insanity, inspired by the mental problems former band member Barrett suffered from. They came up with subjects like time, greed, war, rush, death,… and originally gave the album the title Dark Side of the Moon: A Piece for Assorted Lunatics. They released it as The Dark Side of the Moon and the impact of the album was enormous, as music critics quickly recognized the brilliance of it’s concept. But the album also became a huge commercial success, selling millions of copies, especially after ‘Money’ became a rare hit single for the band. The reason for this commercial success prolly is the fact that this album lacks some extended instrumental experiments that was typical for Floyd’s preceding (and following!) albums. That’s why it’s also the perfect starter for the uninitiated Floyd ones.

Each side of the orignal LP consists of a continuous piece of music, introduced and ended by a heartbeat, in that way reflecting the human life. It starts with the combined track ‘Speak to Me/Breathe’, stressing the primary elements of the life one lives. It contains samples from a lot of other tracks to follow on the album, like the clocks of ‘Time’ (which has a reprise of ‘Breathe’), the cash registers of ‘Money’ and the laughter of ‘Brain Damage’. Then we move on to the instrumental ‘On the Run’, with the synthesizers taking you to the rushy scene of an airport, pointing at the anxiety of flying.

At the beginning of track 3 you are completely shaken awake by the alarm clocks telling you it’s ‘Time’, followed by a fantastic instrumental intro of Mason’s drum solo and Waters’ bass picking, lasting for about two minutes. This track especially shows how beautiful  the voices of Richard Wright and David Gilmour (which are kinda similar), can be harmonised together. The lyrics tell you how time can get a grip on your existence when you underestimate its speed. It’s brilliantly followed by the return to solitude in the end of the song, with the reprise of ‘Breathe’. The logical next step is death, touchingly portrayed with ‘The Great Gig in the Sky’, closing side 1. Guest singer Clare Torry screams unintelligible lines, representing the ascending spirit of a death person. She received £30 for her contribution back then, but after some suing  in 2004 she succeeded to get some settlement concerning the royalties of the song.

Side 2 opens with the single ‘Money’, well-known for it’s recognizable intro (sounds of cash registers supported by a bass riff) and the legendary transition from sax solo to guitar solo. It became the biggest commercial success of the album, which is quite ironic  as it’s an accusation against greed and consumerism. It flows over into ‘Us and Them’, the longest track on the album and also containing some sax solos. The song is about conflict in all it’s possible forms, war as well as personal relationships.

What’s next is some form of medley like the one closing The BeatlesAbbey Road. It starts with another instrumental one, ‘Any Colour You Like’, which fades over into ‘Brain Damage’, one of my personal favorites. Roger Waters takes the lead vocals here, singing ‘and if the band you’re in starts playing different tunes’, pointing to former member Barett, who would sometimes just start playing another song in the middle of a performance with the band at the top of his mental problems. The climax of he album is the last song, ‘Eclipse’, with it’s loud melody telling us what we people all have in common.

What characterizes the album throughout all the tracks are the different voices that were  mixed into it. These are all extracts from interviews Roger Waters took with all kind of people who were present in the studios at the times of recording, ranging from studio staff to other artists recording in the Abbey Road studios. The laughter on ‘Brain Damage’ for example was contributed by road manager Peter Watts (father of Naomi). Paul McCartney was also interviewed, but his voice was never used as his answers were considered as ‘trying too hard to be funny’. Lol. Enjoy this  absolute ‘must have heard before you die’.

Top Tracks:

1. Time
2. Brain Damage
3. The Great Gig in the Sky


CantBuyaThrill1972 mrtambourineman1965 areyouexperienced1967 musicfrombigpink1968