Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Discussions about Pink Floyd and Solo Official Album CDs and DVDs.

Rate This Album

5 - Best
17
23%
4
24
32%
3
13
17%
2
16
21%
1 - Worst
5
7%
 
Total votes: 75

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by stryder » Fri Feb 05, 2010 9:36 pm

David Smith wrote:
jtull wrote:I wonder who sang the orginal harmonies in 'Celestial Voices' (ASOS song) on the studio version?
If I'm not mistaken it's not Gilmour, right?
I always thought it was... But then that may be because i couldn't imagine who else would have done it.
According to the website here, it states that Gilmour sung on the song.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by danielcaux » Sat Feb 06, 2010 7:36 pm

jtull wrote:I wonder who sang the orginal harmonies in 'Celestial Voices' (ASOS song) on the studio version?
John Mellotron?

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by malusienka » Sat Feb 06, 2010 9:15 pm

danielcaux wrote:
jtull wrote:I wonder who sang the orginal harmonies in 'Celestial Voices' (ASOS song) on the studio version?
John Mellotron?
:lol:

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by czgibson » Fri Sep 10, 2010 11:25 pm

When I first heard this record as a kid I loved it, despite the inevitable moments of total confusion. I used to play 'Several Species...' to everyone I could to see the looks of disbelief on their faces. This was the first album I heard that really was out there, and it taught me that any sound you can come up with can be put on a record. That's not always a good thing, of course, and there are a few moments on Ummagumma where, like Blake says in his book, you get the sense of an individual band member being left in the studio unsupervised. On the whole, though, I think they just about get away with it on the studio disc. These experiments are filled with ideas that would be refined and polished over the years - it's good to hear them in embryonic form here.

Hardly needs mentioning that the live recordings are the best they ever released, along with Pompeii.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by J Ed » Thu Aug 18, 2011 10:41 pm

Umagumma may have been my 5th Floydian purchase after buying the Big 4 70s concept albums, thought my memory of this point is long blazed away

a very cool album cover, and the first proper photos Id seen of the band aside from the poster in Dark Side
and two very different albums in one package, neither anything like their 70s albums, which suddenly seemed formulaic by contrast

the live album was the easier to get into and was always my favoured half
the side with StC>Saucerful especially, as it flowed like one big weird track
it must be understood that at the time I first heard it, the bootlegs we now take for granted were hard to find and prohibitively expensive, so this was the only live Floyd I ever heard for years and years
Live in Pompeii only ever was shown very infrequently on late night cable teevee, so there wasnt even really that to compare to
indeed I think Id seen Rogers 84 tour and maybe even the MLoR 87 tour before I ever got any of them bootlegs for myself

once I got A Nice Pair and Relics I had to admit the live versions were improvements on the studio versions, definitive in fact
but it took my years to realise the studio Astronomy was not what was on A Nice Pair: Syds original version it turns out had a unique charm all its own that was somewhat watered down into more generic style on Ummagumma
the other three were improved if not perfected on this live album
(bootlegs show they each continued to evolve of course)


as for the studio side, it was the least unified thing Id heard yet from a band that did every album as a cohesive whole
in fact it seemed more like a collection of sketches, some of which, especially Roger and Daves part, were like experiments that would later reappear in more polished form on the 70s albums
my favourite part: Several Small Species etc...: from my first listen to The Wall, I dug their use of sound collage, and this was the wackiest sound collage ever
Daves part actually works like a miniconcept album all on its own, too bad he didnt revive this one for his recent tour

putting out an album of vague musical sketches from each individual member seems like a radical thing to do now, but remember this was a year after The White Album, which was pretty much the same thing, its just The Beatles had a seeming endless supply of catchy songs to fill their sketchbook sampler, whereas the Floyds just had ideas for experiments

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by Jack Wolf » Wed Aug 24, 2011 8:43 pm

Ummagumma

Live

1. Astronomy Domine: A longer, more dynamic version compared to the one on Piper. - 9.0
2. Careful With That Axe, Eugene: An unnerving and haunting masterpiece. - 9.0
3. Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun: Longer, more intense and energetic than the studio version. Fantastic musicianship all around. - 9.5
4. A Saucerful Of Secrets: Definite improvement over the studio version. Richer and fuller. - 9.0

Studio

1. Sysyphus 1: A nice intro to the album. - 7.0
2. Sysyphus 2: Beethoven on meth? - 3.0
3. Sysyphus 3: Complete and utter chaos. - 4.0
4. Sysyphus 4: A fairly good track, just alright. - 6.5
5. Grantchester Meadows: A refreshingly beautiful, slow paced summer song. Just perfect. - 8.5
6. Several Species...: I'm not sure why, but I like this one. This is in a category all its own. - 7.0
7. The Narrow Way 1: A good music piece with a little experimentation going on. - 7.0
8. The Narrow Way 2: This is a very cool track, sort of dark and strange. - 7.5
9. The Narrow Way 3: Another Floydian masterpiece! Best song on the album (studio). - 9.5
10. Grand Vizier's Garden Party 1: Nice and simple.. - 6.0
11. Grand Vizier's Garden Party 2: First half is pretty good and then...WTF? Very dissapointing because this one could have been much better. - 5.0
12. Grand Vizier's Garden Party 3: Same as part 1 but too short. At only 38 seconds, what's the point? - 4.0
13. Album Artwork: I would rank this as one of their most creative and appealing album covers. The artwork on the back cover is awesome too! I love it. - 9.0

Live Score: 9.1
Studio Score: 6.5

Final Combined Score: 7.8 (out of 10)

Final Words: A very good album through and through. Even without the live disc, the album is still a great listen. Most of the musical pieces and songs work, a few don't. They were experimenting, so I guess you can expect a few failures. I would say the studio part of the album is roughly equal in quality to the More soundtrack.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by danielcaux » Thu Aug 25, 2011 3:38 am

40 years after and I'm still waiting for a trance or jungle remix of Several Species. That song is really asking for it. Not even a hip-hop sampling job? That's one mean groove yet to be used!

Caca oOOom Ca ca Ooom cacca OOOm!

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by my breakfast. » Thu Aug 25, 2011 2:34 pm

I still stand by Ummagumma as being my favorite Pink Floyd album. It doesn't sit well with the other Floyd albums, hence why a lot seem to dislike it, but I still think its cool.

Afterall, early Tangerine Dream owes an awful lot to this record. Everything they recorded before they got the Moog sequencers is a lot like anything off Ummagumma. I've rarely heard a record of such unusual sounding creations executed so well. Aomxomoxoa and Anthem of the Sun by the Grateful Dead would be their two most 'out there' albums but they don't go quite as far sonically. Sgt Peppers also comes to mind as using strange sounds and mixes but it still is not as free and weird as Ummagumma. A lot of Krautrock bands were clearly listening to Ummagumma (along with Zappa Hendrix etc...) and taking a lot from it, but few do it with such pure abandon as Pink Floyd.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by Jimi Dean Barrett » Sun Feb 19, 2012 3:57 am

I was at a friends house last night and he had a tiny record player in his study, so he played the LP Umma Gumma. I thought one of his kids was outside the room bouncing up and down on the floorboards, but it was a noise made by the record player itself. (It's one of those that automatically turn and you have to switch it off at the volume switch)

Anyway, I'm bumping this thread as despite it being on vinyl and despite him knowing the album as long as me (Early 90's) and even though the volume wasn't that loud... he STILL jumps at the bit in Sysyphus! :lol:

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by danielcaux » Fri Feb 24, 2012 5:04 am

Wow! I didn't know that the famous Interstellar Overdrive Ummagumma outtake had surfaced so long ago! I just was reading some old threads on Y! and found it out :shock: #-o

Great version! Had not been for the LP running time issues it would have made the Ummagumma live disc even better. Interesting "arrangement", they mix in different bits from various songs there, I can't hear pieces of Grand Bizier, Khyber and the Narrow Way noises...


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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by rememberaday » Sun Oct 07, 2012 3:11 pm

Today was the first time I listened to both the live and studio sides of the album in one go. Usually, I either listen to the live or the studio part alone. Anyway, straight to my review :

Live Album:
1. Astronomy Domine:


I've noticed how everyone says that the live versions in Ummagumma beat the shite out of the studio counterparts. Here, I'll have to respectfully disagree; I may be one of those oddballs who prefer the Piper version to this one. Of course, if one sees dynamics, then this version is the best. However, the Piper version, while shorter, has some little features that I like better: first, Rick's and Syd's vocals are much better than the vocals on this one. Here, they sure sound spacey, but at times it's too weird for me. Second, and more importantly, this live version doesn't have that whirpool of an organ which they have at the last verse in Piper ("Lime and limpid...."). All the same, it's still a great version, and one of the greatest space rock tunes I've heard.

2. Careful With That Axe, Eugene:

Now, this is where the live album really starts going from great to sublime. In fact, this might be the definitive version of Eugene, everything over here is just so right, from that bloodcurdling scream to the changing dynamics of the song.

3. Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun:

Again, another favourite live version of mine. Whereas the studio version on Saucerful is more cryptic, this live version is more spiritual. Rick's organ is fantastic and even Nick's drumming is great - I couldn't really imagine any one other than Nick playing drums in this song.

4. A Saucerful Of Secrets:

This live version is disappointing compared to the studio version. Sure, it rock's harder, and the drums are louder and all scary - great! But from "Celestial Voices", Gilmour's moronic Ah-Ah screams are just irritating. The studio part was truly ethereal and divine - this one falls short by an interstellar mile.

Studio Album:
1. Sysyphus:


My favourite studio track in Ummagumma. The intro and outro just sound so imperial. The avant-garde noodling is good, though not great, but it also has a definite sort of purpose which is lacking in the other suites in the studio album, hence it gets bonus points.

2. Grantchester Meadows:

Roger Waters' first solo contribution, it's a folky pastoral song, but that doesn't mean that it's as great as people say it is. It pales in comparison to other pastoral songs of that period, especially Cirrus Minor, and I'm disgusted by Roger's lacklustre vocals. The only good thing in this track is the buzzing fly at the end.

3. Several Species:

The title is one of the greatest titles ever in music! And as weird as it may be, I simply love this type of musique concrete! It's a huge leap from the previous drone of a song. And who hates Pictish rantings?

4. The Narrow Way:

I don't hate Gilmour, but this is just cringeworthy. Dave obviously tried a suite similar in length to Sysyphus, but it's just meandering and as pretentious as fuck. This is where I stop paying attention to the record and use it as just a background music for any other work. The middle section is slightly interesting, though.

5. The Grand Vizier's Garden Party:

Fortunately, this track is much better. Great avant-garde stuff.
***************************************************

So, overall, it's certainly an essential album for me. I concur with others that the live album would have been better with Interstellar Overdrive. Oh by the way, the album cover's great! I'm a sucker for Droste effects!

Overall Rating: a low 4/5. I'd say buy their other psych albums like PATGOD, ASOS and More first, then buy this one before proceeding to Atom Heart Mother.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by RonToon » Wed Oct 10, 2012 3:46 pm

This is one of the first Pink Floyd albums I bought after discovering WYWH in 1975 and is still the only official release that I can't listen to. I've tried to revisit it over the years, and purchased it again with the release of the 2011 remaster, but I simply do not like this album with the exception of a couple of the live tracks, Grantchester Meadows, and The Narrow Way (Part 3).

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by Massed Gadgets » Wed Oct 10, 2012 9:04 pm

I love Ummagumma...of the new remasters, it and More were the first ones I bought. The first time I heard it was in the radio station where I worked when I was 16. I put it on the turntable in the back studio, not really knowing what to expect. My experience of Pink Floyd at that time consisted of Meddle (which was the first PF album I ever heard), DSOTM, WYWH and The Wall. I was truly blown away. I'd never heard music like this before. It was so strange and mysterious and powerful. It remains to this day one of the biggest influences on my own music.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by pinkfloyd » Wed Nov 13, 2013 8:20 am

strange album but very good and innovative

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Re: Pink Floyd - Ummagumma

Post by Morty » Sat Nov 15, 2014 2:32 pm

I do love this album. It has the strong live part, then the more fun playful second part. I am also a big Nick Mason fan, so a 4 from me.