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The sweet smell of a great sorrow lies over the land, dear sistren
and brethren, followers of the Holy Church of Iggy the Inuit. But
before we shall dwell on that we want to wish you a Happy New Year. So
here it is. Happy New Year!
The Later Year$
The ending of past year saw the release of The
Later Years, a pretty expensive luxury set of the Diet Floyd.
Basically it is David Gilmour’s scientific method to find out where you
fans really stand.
The set contains about three times the same product, in different
formats, and – although its selling price has descended with about 40%
to 50% - it is still fucking expensive for what it’s really worth. If
you want you can read our article about it here: The
Later Years: Hot Air & Co.
Caught in a cauldron of hate
But that is just economics. What preoccupies us more is that in 2020 the
Waters – Gilmour feud has still not been settled. While in the past it
was Roger Waters who has been designated as the baddy, it is apparently
now David Gilmour’s turn to be the cantankerous one.
In a recent interview, Waters claims that he offered a peace plan to
Gilmour, that was promptly rejected. Polly Samson, from her side,
twittered that it was not her hubby who rejected the peace plan, but the
Two bald men fighting over a comb. A golden comb, embellished with crazy
diamonds, obviously. Decades ago Nick Mason had the following to say
about the ongoing Floyd-war: ”If our children behaved this way, we would
have been very cross.” Seems that the 'children' still haven't learned
Caring about Carin
The Later Years box-set has not only divided fans. There has also been
some grumbling from Jon
Carin, one of the Floyd’s session musicians, who co-wrote Learning
To Fly. It first started with Carin complaining on Facebook that the
Floyd didn’t wish him a happy birthday. We know the Church has been
accused before from inventing stories, but this stuff is so unbelievable
you really can’t make it up.
According to Jon Carin he played the bulk of the piano and keyboards on The
Division Bell (and quite a few on The
Endless River) and not Rick Wright as is generally believed. Why he
has waited a quarter of a century to complain about this is something of
a mystery, unless you mention that magical word that will turn the
meekest lamb into a dog of war: copyrights.
The lost art of conversation
To promote The Later Years David Gilmour has published a 4-part podcast
where he carefully reinterprets the past. Unfortunately what has been
written about Pink Floyd before - by journalists and biographers - can
still be read today, so almost nobody takes the propaganda from Gilmour
seriously, unless you weren’t born yet when he turned a solo album into
a Floyd one.
And where is Nick Mason, I hear you say? While he used to be the
thriving force behind Floydian publicity in the past he is now totally
It’s almost as if there is a saucerful of secrets. Or a true enigma,
The best of Tumblr 2019
But let’s finally start with our traditional annual overview of our
sister blog on Tumblr
that is daily updated with pictures you all have seen before. Have fun!
The Church wishes to thank: Steve Bassett (Madcapsyd), Steve Bennett,
Jumaris CS, Joanna Curwood, Maya Deren, Esfera04, Jenni Fiire,
Freqazoidiac, Rafael Gasent, Nino Gatti, Rich Hall, Harlequin, Dave
Harris, Jabanette, Dion Johnson, Keleven, Simon Matthews, Joanne Milne
(Charley), Rocco Moliterno, Peudent, Poliphemo, RonToon, TopPopper,
Waelz, Wolfpack, Franka Wright and the many collaborators on Steve
Hoffman Music Forums, Yeeshkul and Birdie Hop.
Despite our many criticisms about this box, see The
Later Years: Hot Air & Co, we have to confess it simply oozes a
scent of 'extensive luxury' and our first thought was (and still is)
that it is worth every penny we spent on it. A quick remark about the
cover and inside art that is exquisite Hipgnosian as well and not
the ersatz from The
Opening the box, like one of these medieval manuscripts, immediately
confronts you with four booklets. Three are Pink Floyd tour books,
because this is mainly a live set. The fourth contains the lyrics of
AMLOR, TDB and TER, if these abbreviations mean something to you. All
glossy and not on the grey recycled toilet paper that made the Early
Years booklets so unreadable.
When you remove the booklets, there is another thick photo book you can
kill a kitten with. Unfortunately its pages are also made of carton;
using normal paper would’ve certainly doubled its content. But perhaps
that would’ve been overkill as we have already been confronted with
about three hundred pictures of Gilmour and Co.
Don’t think you can get to the music now. Hidden under the book is an
envelope that contains tour artefacts, posters, stickers and other
memorabilia and… two one sided 45RPM singles with etched B-sides.
One contains a rehearsal tape of Lost
For Words, the other Arnold
Layne as performed by the band at the Barbican on the Syd
Barrett tribute concert in 2007, although they were not billed as
Pink Floyd if our memory is correct. (For the completists: it appears
that both singles exist in two versions, with different artwork on its
A Momentary Lapse of Reason
The surprise the ardent fan, your Reverend included, was hoping for is
the updated and remixed version of the Floyd’s comeback album A
Momentary Lapse of Reason. We have compared both versions and what
we think of it will be put hereafter in one of our fantastic Holy Church
of Iggy the Inuit reviews.
Warning: Syd Barrett content – none.
Signs Of Life
This very ambient and very dreamy piece is enhanced with an almost Keith-Emersonian
keyboard piece of Rick Wright. Magical stuff for those who believe that
Rick was the hidden musical force in the band.
Learning To Fly
For me there is almost no difference, perhaps a little guitar lick at 25
seconds that I don’t remember hearing before. The keyboards are a bit
more to the front during the middle ‘flight’ section, as well as the musique
concrète bits .
Dogs Of War
The Pink Floyd song everybody loves to hate. Basically a simple blues
stomper that has been enhanced with Floydian sound effects. Although
loathed by a majority of fans this song is much closer to the Floyd’s
default (or vintage) sound than – for instance – One Slip or Learning To
Overall I can’t hear a big difference between both versions, except that
the vocals, basses and the rolling keyboard have been given extra
emphasis. So one could say it sounds much fatter now than it did
before. A few of the saxophone’s weirder noises have been removed as
well. So is this one better? Absolutely. Even better.
The one with the Kraftwerkian intro. Classic Wright keyboards added
throughout and new drums by Nick 'here I am' Mason. As someone remarked
on a music forum, this one gives you ‘goosebumps and shivers down the
spine‘ throughout the track. The drums are much softer now and also some
guitar bits seem to have been added (or mixed from oblivion into the
I almost consider it a Floydian classic now.
On The Turning Away
This song brings back some memories for me, frightening me a bit how it
would sound now. A keyboard drone has been added in the beginning and
some scarce keyboard parts throughout the song. As some alumni have
pointed out there are new vocals that may or may not have been taken
from a live performance. At least David Gilmour doesn’t strain his voice
like on the original or at least so it seems.
Many hate this new version, calling it a Frankensteined mess, but I
simply can't. For me this has suddenly turned into a Comfortably Numb
#2, although the neutral observer will call that a very hyperbolic
Yet Another Movie / Round And Around
The song I prefer the least on Momentary Lapse. It’s a bit boring and
one dimensional, if you ask me.
The 2019 version opens with boing boings that threaten to
euthanise your loudspeakers. This version has more echo than the
original one – listen to Tony Levin’s bass for example that has got a
much deserved upgrade. I have also the impression that little pieces of
additional music have been added here and there and that the guitar is a
bit less in your face. It also seems that Nick Mason has had more than a
helping hand in this new version.
Still not the greatest Pink Floyd song, but what a remarkable
A New Machine / Terminal Frost / A New Machine 2
I’m putting this song cycle together as I have always seen this as one
Floydian suite. When it comes to review Pink Floyd I always seem to
belong to another planet than the rest of the world anyway. I like A New
Machine, evidently not as a song on its own, but as an introduction and
coda to Terminal Frost.
And I have always loved Terminal Frost as well. But this re-adapted
version seems a bit weird to me, there is something wrong with the piano
and overall it sounds a bit bland, with far inferior drums than on the
original. Suddenly this has turned into the worst song of the album for
me with a mix that was much better in its original version.
A missed chance.
If one Lapse song merits to be described as a Floydian classic it is
this one. When David Gilmour started to play Sorrow, on the 28th of July
2016 in Tienen (Belgium), his guitar grumbled so deeply it promptly
removed my kidney stones. (See: Coming
Back To Life (David Gilmour, Tienen))
The 2019 version of Sorrow tries to imitate that haunting intro, without
a doubt. But perhaps I’m still in a lousy mood from the subpar Terminal
Frost treatment because it appears to me that also this remix is muddier
than the original (and I seem to be the only person on this globe to
find that). A plus however is the addition of Rick’s keyboard,
especially at the end solo.
I deliberately played Lapse 1987 and Lapse 2019 side-to-side without
tinkering, but here is a song I feel the urge for to play with the
sliders. Perhaps it will sound better with some of the basses toned down
Second opinion (after having tinkered with my equaliser settings): it
does indeed sound better now, but I can't really vow with my hand on my
heart that this version is much better than the original.
So what is the end result? I’m not really sure. A Momentary Lapse of
Reason has never been into my favourite top 10 and this remix will
probably not change that. For the moment I do seem to prefer this
version to the original and I can only hope it will get a separate
release one day. For those that rely on streaming or download services I
think this is already the case. Those who still believe in CDs, DVDs and
Blu-Rays will have to buy the entire box, I'm afraid.
Now let’s hope Pink Floyd will finally find the time to re-record Atom
Heart Mother one day. However, this seems highly improbable.
Other reviews from what is in this box, may or may not appear in the
future. The Church wishes to thank the many collaborators on Steve
Hoffman Music Forums and Yeeshkul. ♥ Libby ♥ Iggy ♥
You almost need a degree in Meccano
to open the Pink
Years box. There are many goodies packed inside, although you have
to sell one of your kidneys to be able to buy one. The three post-Waters
studio albums, for example, can be found in 5.1 surround and/or high
resolution stereo mixes. That is what these double DVDs and Blu-Rays are
for. (Logically, the Momentary Lapse surround mixes have only been made
for the remixed and updated 2019 version, not the original 1987 one. You
can read our review of that album at: A
The Endless River Film
Endless River has been turned into a movie experience by long-time
Floyd collaborator Ian
Emes. Opinions differ about this one, ranging from ‘I just watched
it once out of curiosity’ till ‘The film is really nicely done. You’ll
At first the Holy Church was not that interested in this. The Reverend
orated in a previous article: “I seriously wonder what will be the added
value of that.” (See: The
Later Years: Hot Air & Co.)
Is it merely ‘just a compilation of ethereal drone footage’ filmed in
slow motion or is there more at hand? Because most reviews of The Later
Years seem to forget about this feature, with the exception of Bob
Eichler in his article: Pink
Floyd - The Later Years (1987-2019).
...imagine that Stanley Kubrick was annoyed that too many people had
figured out what 2001 was about, so he set out to make an even more
abstract sequel, inspired by Pink Floyd videos. Outer space images, CGI,
lush landscapes, complex machinery, people moving in slow motion,
interesting architecture shot from weird angles, and a cast of
characters who appear throughout the whole thing. Inspired no doubt by
the album's title, water is a major theme of the video – oceans, rivers,
streams, waterfalls, rapids, fountains, etc... My brain kept trying to
make some sense out of the random-seeming images, but it's probably
better to just let it wash over you.
This exactly describes our feelings after watching the movie, but the
Church wouldn’t be the Church without adding its own comments here and
there. While watching the movie we found – often subliminal – links to
Floydian artwork from the past decades or to other material from the Hipgnosis
Walk the Layne
But before we get to the feature film of our cinematic evening, let’s
have a look at some of the shorts that can be found on the same disc. We
are talking about the last Pink Floyd performance, not – as generally
believed – the one at Live8, but the Arnold
Layne song at the Syd Barrett Tribute Concert on the 10th of May
2007 at the Barbican. It can be found twice: once as a backstage
rehearsal and once at the concert. The rehearsal doesn’t have Rick, but
a cool as ever Nick Mason who is drumming on a chair, meaning he uses a
chair for a drum. It’s fun to watch ex-Oasis bass player Andy
Bell, who wasn't even born when Arnold Layne was a hit, learning the
tricks of the trade.
Unfortunately Polly yaps a lot in the background, spoiling the fun. But
that’s how she is known in Cambridge Mafia circles anyway.
From a far better quality is the concert take, filmed by Gavin Elder and
using some shots from Simon
Wimpenny and Kees Nijpels. The Floyd plays the song as has always
been intended, without extra frills, short and sweet. Rick has the
honour to do the vocals and it does seem a bit weird that a backup
keyboard player (Jon Carin) was added, but Rick was probably already
sick by then. The interaction between these three old geezers is magical
and their smiles speak volumes.
A great document with an even greater symbolical and sentimental value.
Here I Go
So here we go for our review of the Ian Emes Endless River film, in 95
screenshots and a lot of text. Better scans can be found on our Tumblr
page, using the Ian
As we have said before, in our Endless River album review from a couple
of years ago, the album is divided in four instrumental suites, ending
with Gilmour’s and Samson’s Floydian eulogy Louder Than Words (see: While
my guitar gently weeps...).
Things Left Unsaid
Things Left Unsaid starts with a very 2001-ish
view from outer space with the sun and earth floating by. Just when you
expect Kubrick’s embryo to appear a human form zooms in. In a corner you
can spot something that could be a nod to the dark alien monolith that
plays such a big role in Kubrick’s masterpiece. Perhaps it is the black
‘Telepatic Wave Receiver and Transmitter’ that adorns The Led
album, although Storm
Thorgerson used to call that the object. (This cover can be found at
the Hipgnosis Covers website: Presence.)
Kubrick and Pink Floyd have a certain past together. Kubrick wanted
to use the Atom
Heart Mother suite for A
Clockwork Orange, but (so the story goes) a stubborn Roger Waters
refused when he discovered that Kubrick wanted to cut up the music to
fit the film scenes. This is an answer Kubrick probably didn’t expect as
the record shop scene in that movie shows the Atom Heart Mother album,
This wasn’t the end of the Kubrick – Waters saga. Legend has it that
Roger Waters wanted to sample some dialogue from 2001 on his album Amused
To Death. This time it was Kubrick’s turn to refuse, and Waters – in
his default charming way – insulted the movie maker with a cryptic
message on that same album. (The 2015 remix/remaster of Amused To Death
has the HAL 9000 message from 2001 restored and the backwards insult
It’s What We Do
With It’s What We Do we return to Earth with scenes of futuristic
skyscrapers and a menacing octahedron metal structure floating in the
air, as an alternative to the Star Trek Borg
After a succession of psychedelic liquid light style scenes, we cut to
some water splashing and yet another drone shot, flying over a cobbled
beach and the sea. A woman rises out of the water, a hint to the Wish
You Were Here diver artwork probably, and is followed by three other
persons, raising from the water like the zombies from that atrocious
We are confronted with an Escher-like
semi-transparent object spinning around in the air.
Ebb And Flow
For an unknown reason, the persons who came out of the sea, run through
some fields. Night falls and we see the starry sky and the aurora
For the bulk of the following song the same four people run around
through fields and forests. There are plenty of nature and water shots.
People are cooling down, playing and resting in the river. Much more
scenes of trees, waterfalls and clouds throughout Skins and Unsung.
Skins shows the more aggressive side of the river.
Unsung gives a more relaxing mood with the sun settling down.
The beautiful Anisina starts with boiling lava and a pair of hands
grabbing mud and kneading it into a shapeless form. Close-ups of
colourful nature scenes before the rain falls.
The Lost Art of Conversation
It is raining and The Lost Art of Conversation concentrates on dripping
leaves and a spider taking shelter in its web. We see some tiny fishes
(and a very big one as well). Could this be a nod to the Pulse
album art that shows the evolution from sea to land animals? (This cover
can be found at the Hipgnosis Covers website: Pulse.)
On Noodle Street
On Noodle Street shows us a bridge over a river that runs through a
city. We look up at skyscrapers again.
People walk in the street to their work or to a train or airport
terminal. A hint perhaps to the screen movies that accompanied the Dark
Side Of The Moon shows.
Allons-y reverts back to revolving city scenes and water spitting
fountains. The four people walk barefoot in the grass, falling down in a
field of ferns in the middle of a forest.
Autumn ‘68 has the four actors wrestling and lying on a grass field in
the mountains. The spinning multi-cornered object appears again in the
sky, confronting the people who look at it. It then disappears into
space, where it seems to be heading for a far-away nebula.
Allons-y (2) really seems like 2001 revisited with a flight through
space and a human form that appears in the vacuum. This could be
influenced by the hanging man artwork on the Pulse album. (This cover
can be found at the Hipgnosis Covers website: Pulse.)
Pink Floyd has long time been associated with space and space rock (see
our article from 2014: Still
First in Space. NOT!) and most fans are well aware of the fan-made
synchronisation between Echoes
and the 'Jupiter and Beyond the Infinite' segment from Kubrick’s 2001
movie. If you have never experienced it, and you should, here is one of
the many places were you can watch it: Jupiter
and Beyond the Infinite (Vimeo link).
After the interstellar flight the movie shows the four protagonists,
covered in multicoloured spots, dancing in the vacuum of space, while
scientific and mathematical equations appear on the screen.
On what appears to be a dashboard from an extraterrestrial space ship
some words appear in vaguely recognisable letters. It is as if multiple
letters have been stacked on top of each other. Recognisable are the
words ‘Infinite’ and ‘the dawn\mist’. That last one is a phrase from the
refrain of High Hopes:
The grass was greener The light was brighter The taste was sweeter The
nights of wonder With friends surrounded The dawn mist
glowing The water flowing The endless river
These lyrics read like a synopsis for Ian Emes’ The Endless River movie
and they can be deciphered, with some difficulties, on the alien monitor.
But the surprises aren’t over yet. At the left hand side of the screen
appear scrambled letters that form the nearly illegible words ‘Publius &
There we have it. After more than 25 years a new mention of this ongoing
For those who are too young to remember. The Publius
Enigma was an internet brain-teaser, a puzzle evolving around the
1994 Pink Floyd album The
In the morning of the 11th of June 1994, when the band was playing two
nights at the New York Yankee stadium a cryptic message was send to the
then leading Pink Floyd Usenet newsgroup. It was signed by a poster who
named himself Publius and who used an anonymous e-mail service to
deliver his message.
In this and about two dozen other posts he tried to convince the fans
that The Division Bell music, lyrics and artwork contained an enigma and
that the person who found the solution would be rewarded with a price.
Obviously a lot of fans were highly sceptical about these pretty vague
messages (especially as there were also mails from pranksters going
around). In order to prove his existence Publius promised to give a sign
during a Pink Floyd concert at the Giants Stadium, East Rutherford, New
Jersey. During the song Keep
Talking (!) the light display at the front of the stage spelled out
the words ENIGMA PUBLIUS.
From then on a large group of fans tried to find a solution to the
enigma. The hints from Publius were deliberately very vague and it was
pretty unclear where to start looking for clues. Basically Publius was
asking for an answer but without giving the question first. There were
rumours of people digging holes in fields around Cambridge, because they
thought a ‘treasure chest’ might have been buried there. Others thought
that the solution might simply be a code word, an anagram buried in the
lyrics, like the word ‘enigma’ that can be found in the third strophe of Wearing
The Inside Out.
Publius kept the Enigma search alive by adding hints that only added to
the confusion. In an unpublished report from a Belgian fan, that the
Church could look into, it was proven that most messages were send in
the early hours after a show or during a day off in the Floyd’s busy
touring schedule. Publius undoubtedly was one of the (many) people
joining the Pink Floyd world tour and someone who could manipulate light
and screen settings during a show.
On 20 October 1994 Pink Floyd recorded their London Earl’s Court show
for what later would become the Pulse VHS release. During Another Brick
In The Wall the word ENIGMA was projected on the big round screen behind
the band, giving the Reverend a mild heart attack when he watched the
show a couples of week later on television.
For the VHS release though the word was obfuscated by adding extra lines
and stripes, just as it is has been scrambled now on The Endless River
movie. (On the Pulse DVD release the ENIGMA slide has been removed and
replaced by one reading E=MC2. However, traces of the original can be
found if one browses through the scene frame by frame.)
Over the years the band has reluctantly confessed that the Enigma riddle
was basically a hoax, started by the record company, although the Church
of Iggy the Inuit still suspects that Nick Mason, who has been known for
his pranks and dry wit, may have had a hand in it.
The Publius Enigma died an unsuspected death when the anonymous mail
account suddenly disappeared, making it impossible for fans to post a
solution and claim the price, if there ever was a riddle to start with
and a price to collect.
Over the years ‘new’ Publius Enigma sightings have been discovered, but
these all came from outside or unreliable sources. Until now… although
we sincerely doubt that the crazy hunt for fame and fortune will start
all over again.
But what a long strange trip it has been!
Talkin’ Hawkin’ continues with the multi-coloured dancing silhouettes,
followed by the clocks of Time.
As a matter of fact, the original 'Time' backdrop movie was made by none
other than Ian Emes (Time
Some of the people appear packed in linen, like a mummy or a ghost,
others wear their masks again. It reminds us of the Hipgnosis artwork
for the Alan Parsons Project ‘Tales of Mystery And Imagination’ and/or
‘Frances The Mute’ from Mars Volta. (These covers can be found at the
Hipgnosis Covers website: Tales
of Mystery And Imagination & Frances
The aliens arrive in the city during the night with the street lights on
and the buildings lit. They travel through a tunnel.
Calling / Eyes To Pearls
The aliens transform into liquid ghosts in a nightmarish scene. The city
is dark but has tunnels that are lit. Somehow the aliens are trying to
become human and they roam through abandoned buildings.
Those that have masks take it off. A couple of characters have
difficulties breathing. Their faces are stuck in bubbles, like a liquid
cosmonaut’s helmet, and they fight to survive. (There is a Hipgnosis
cover for the album Deliverance from the French disco band Space.
It has a woman, floating upside down in the desert, with an astronaut’s
helmet on. This cover can be found at the Hipgnosis Covers website: Deliverance,
But apparently they succeed and overcome the nightmare. They are running
through the landscape, sometimes hand in hand. One of the personae has
the multi-cornered space anomaly tattooed on her arm.
The band is running to the forest were they either find some rest or are
falling down. It makes one wonder if they have succeeded transforming
into humans or if they have failed in their mission. There is ambiguity
in the scenes and they can be interpreted differently.
One of the aliens looks up at the sky, where the singularity has
appeared again. It is not sure if it there to rescue or to abandon them.
Louder Than Words
The last song of the movie shows several of the previous scenes again,
but some have been turned upside down or are running backwards.
It could be that the aliens have finally accepted that earth is their
new home. A couple meets at the seaside and sees the object that
disappears again in outer space, leaving them while flashbacks from the
previous songs are repeated.
The movie ends with yet another scene from a bubbling river before
switching over to the earth seen from space again.
There is a glimpse of a black obelisk that transforms into the
multi-shaped interdimensional spaceship.
Although weird and filled with contradicting symbolism The Endless River
movie isn’t half as bad as we feared it would be. Ian Emes has turned it
into an interesting visual spectacle with many enigmatic scenes and a
pretty intriguing, but we fear, non-existing storyline. (Although the
viewer will vainly try to reconstitute a consistent story out of it.) It
could well be that we will get this DVD (or Blu-Ray) out whenever we
want to listen to The Endless River, that is slowly but surely rising in
our ranking from preferred ambient albums, whether you call it a Pink
Floyd album or not.
The Church wishes to thank the many collaborators on Steve Hoffman Music
Forums, Yeeshkul and the quite fantastic Hipgnosis Covers website. ♥
Libby ♥ Iggy ♥
Sources (other than the above mentioned links): Blake, Mark: Pigs
Might Fly, Aurum Press Limited, London, 2013, p. 153. Hipgnosis
Covers at http://www.hipgnosiscovers.com/ Steve
Hoffman Forum Thread: Pink
Floyd The Later Years Box Set Powell, Aubrey: Hipgnosis, Les
Pochettes Mythiques du Célèbre Studio, Gründ, Paris, 2015
(French edition of Hipgnosis Portraits). Thorgerson, Storm & Powell,
Aubrey: For The Love Of Vinyl, Picturebox, Brooklyn, 2008. Thorgerson,
Storm & Curzon, Peter: Mind Over Matter 4, Omnibus Press,
London, 2007. Thorgerson, Storm & Curzon, Peter: Taken By Storm,
Omnibus Press, London, 2007. Thorgerson, Storm: Walk Away René,
Paper Tiger, Limpsfield, 1989. Yeeshkul Forum Thread: Pink
Floyd - The Later Years