Pink Floyd - Meddle

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

Rate This Album

5 - Best
48
43%
4
52
47%
3
9
8%
2
0
No votes
1 - Worst
2
2%
 
Total votes: 111

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by Damn!t » Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:43 pm

Why wouldnt albums that are only collections of songs deserve to be brilliant?
Why would only themed pieces be reckognized as masteripeces?

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by PublicImage » Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:47 pm

I would give Echoes 5/5, no doubt about it, but that is only part of the album. I think it would have been better if they recorded the live arrangement of The Embryo in the studio and used it somewhere on the album (although I would still rather hear it on AHM in the place of Alan's Psychedelic Breakfast).
Damn!t wrote:1. Why wouldnt albums that are only collections of songs deserve to be brilliant?
2. Why would only themed pieces be reckognized as masteripeces?
1. If they are musically cohesive, none of the songs disrupted the flow and each song is brilliant, then it can be. I might have phrased that part badly, but you are right. They can be, provided that they work together to form something musically coherent and focused.

I just don't think Meddle meets those conditions. It is a good album, but it isn't a great album. I'd still recommend it to people who have yet to hear it, despite only giving it 3/5.

2. The above basically answers the question.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by Stephen » Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:52 pm

I voted it a 5 because it deserved more than a 4 in my opinion, if the voting had been 1-10 it would have got a 9. I don't think that Dark Side is a collection of "absolutely superb " songs, in fact most wouldn't be in my top 20 Floyd tracks, but they work wonderfully as an album. Much like a football team doesn't need to be full of star players, it just needs to get the blend right to be the best.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by PublicImage » Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:56 pm

Stephen wrote:I voted it a 5 because it deserved more than a 4 in my opinion, if the voting had been 1-10 it would have got a 9. I don't think that Dark Side is a collection of "absolutely superb " songs, in fact most wouldn't be in my top 20 Floyd tracks, but they work wonderfully as an album. Much like a football team doesn't need to be full of star players, it just needs to get the blend right to be the best.
That's why I gave DSOTM four stars. It's a strong album but a few of the songs are lacking. Not as much as the likes of Seamus and Fearless, though, which I often find myself wanting to skip.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by Damn!t » Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:59 pm

Yes.
You say that only musically cohesive pieces of work (things that have some sort of thread that goes on through the whole album)
deserve the highes rate as a whole... well, what would you say about some bands best of compilation?
Every single track is brilliant yet some of them dont fit in that category of musical cohesion and there for cant be pronunced as brilliant 5 stars album?
In my mind, an album can be great either way - if pieces hold some mutual theme or not. And there for can deserve highes grade.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by PublicImage » Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:15 pm

Damn!t wrote:Yes.
You say that only musically cohesive pieces of work (things that have some sort of thread that goes on through the whole album)
deserve the highes rate as a whole... well, what would you say about some bands best of compilation?
Every single track is brilliant yet some of them dont fit in that category of musical cohesion and there for cant be pronunced as brilliant 5 stars album?
In my mind, an album can be great either way - if pieces hold some mutual theme or not. And there for can deserve highes grade.
It doesn't need a theme to be coherent. It needs to sustain similar musical ideas for each song, like Dark Side of the Moon (which obviously does have a theme, but that isn't relevant to the argument), so that it does not sound like

I never listen to 'best of' compilations. I don't think I would be that impressed by a 'Best of Bowie' CD, for instance, though, because it would not work to go from something like Starman to Always Crashing in the Same Car and Let's Dance. Massive shifts of style within an album are almost always terrible and disrupt the album's flow. It sounds as if a different album has started, which hardly equates a great album. It might show diversity on the artist's behalf, but it is a detriment to the album. It would be a better idea to take a certain style in a explore it in more length throughout another album than to write one song in that style and put it amongst a collection of songs that are completely different.

Albums can be good whether or not they have a theme throughout, I agree, but they are rarely good as albums if there is pointless shifts in style throughout. It just seems unfocused when that happens. That is not Meddle's problem, however. The problem with Meddle is that the songwriting is not consistently great. Some of the songs have potential to be great but fail to meet their potential.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by danielcaux » Fri Jan 02, 2009 2:26 pm

A good excercise for giving an album its "grade" is to rate each song individually and then look at the album as a "sum of its parts", that at least give the reader a more detailed idea of your critical view of the whole work.

Here goes mine:

5 One Of These Days
5 Pillow of Winds
4 Fearless
3 San Tropez
3 Seamus
5 Echoes
25/6= 4.16= 4

But I'm going to give it only a 3 because an album is more than the sum of its parts and this one lacks, not so much cohesiveness but a sense of purpouse. Although I do think that sometimes a non cohesive album can be graded as 5 if the music is really really strong. Funny thing is had the album only been the first three tracks and Echoes I would have give it a 5 and grade it down to 4 for being too short!!

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by pato26473 » Sat Feb 07, 2009 3:21 pm

danielcaux wrote:A good excercise for giving an album its "grade" is to rate each song individually and then look at the album as a "sum of its parts", that at least give the reader a more detailed idea of your critical view of the whole work.

Here goes mine:

5 One Of These Days
5 Pillow of Winds
4 Fearless
3 San Tropez
3 Seamus
5 Echoes
25/6= 4.16= 4

But I'm going to give it only a 3 because an album is more than the sum of its parts and this one lacks, not so much cohesiveness but a sense of purpouse. Although I do think that sometimes a non cohesive album can be graded as 5 if the music is really really strong. Funny thing is had the album only been the first three tracks and Echoes I would have give it a 5 and grade it down to 4 for being too short!!
DanielCaux, yours is an excellent idea, and I haven't changed your ratings, since I'd vote exactly with the same ratings for each song. Anyway, I voted this album with a 5, since, in my opinion, an album with both "A pillow of winds" and "Echoes" in it, should not deserve less than that. THIS is the record where Floyd finally got "their" distinctive sound of the 70s, and as I said before in another thread, this one marks the beginning of -for me- the best Floyd albums in-a-row (Meddle, DSOTM, WYWH and Animals) (Depending on the day and my mood, I could add The Wall to the list, but I surely wouldn't count OBC in this "line" since it's a soundtrack).

Meddle is a masterpiece. I've never listened to it live, for obvious reasons, but I don't know what would have happened in my mind if I could have the chance of listening "Echoes" in a concert ..... paradise on Earth!! :D :D

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by J Ed » Sat Feb 07, 2009 4:39 pm

to the above formula I would factor in the lengths of the songs
because 5/5 Echoes is of course half the album,
and 3/5 Seamus is only 2 minutes long
that d bring it pretty durn close to a full 5

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by PublicImage » Sat Feb 07, 2009 4:46 pm

Okay, I'll join this fun.

4 One Of These Days
3 Pillow of Winds
3 Fearless
3 San Tropez
2 Seamus
4 Echoes

My calculator tells me that is 3.1, so I will stick with my initial rating.

Bringing in length of tracks means the time between One of These Days and Echoes (I'd appoximate that at seventeen minutes or so) is filled entirely with songs that I'd consider just above average (except the boring Seamus). Echoes itself contains around six minutes of pointless noise, which is enough to prevent it from getting 5/5 from me, so that added on to the middle tracks really detracts from the album's consistency, for me. Alternatively, I could say that it is consistently mediocre, with inconsistencies at the start and the end.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by MeanMrKetchup » Sat Feb 07, 2009 7:35 pm

Meddle was my first Pink Floyd album.

Marking the consolidation of a new sound, the band released Meddle. Well, they released some songs, one of which is the mighty Echoes. The album begins with the disturbing yet intriguing sound of the plonking double-tracked bass guitars which set the scene for the opening track, One Of These Days. The track builds up to a great crescendo and a pretty cool voice from Nick, then, when it's wound up, it explodes. The slide guitar is fantastic, and generally this is a great opener.

One Of These Days gives way to A Pillow Of Winds. Dave's voice here is the best it's been so far in the Floyd's catalogue at this point in their career; this gentle song is nice, nothing really special but a very nice song. Following this is the beautiful Fearless. I enjoy all aspects of this song, with perhaps the You'll Never Walk Alone sample spoiling it, but it's hard to spoil this track, the guitar work is perfect as are the vocals. One of my favorite Floyd tracks.

San Tropez follows with it's jazzy rhythm and feel. Rogers vocals are very well done as is Rick's piano. A nice little song which is quite underrated actually. then on comes Seamus - personally I don't mind this track, it's not good, obviously, but a nice little teaser before the final song. I don't hate it.

Then comes the big one. The 23 minute Echoes has been widely viewed as the bands return to form. From Rick's first poke at the piano, you know that you're in for one hell of a ride. The quite introduction is beautiful as the songs gently creeps up on the listener before a powerful riff from Gilmour is pounded out, then the song, rather unexpectedly, I might add, switches into a cool blues jam. Then for a few minutes we get to hear Pink Floyd doing what they always did best up until this point. The blues dies down and a few sound effects take over the listeners attention. A somewhat abrupt and disturbing mesh of sound effects are heard for a few minutes (perhaps too long?) which is interesting, before the next beautiful section of the song creeps in. Sustained chords from Rick are hidden in the background before being very slowly brought into the foreground before Masons drums join in, it is worth noting that in my opinion, this re-emerging section is one of the finest pieces of the Floyd's music put to record. The crescendo builds and builds, then it builds some more before erupting into an incredible peak at which the vocals return. We are treated to another verse and a slow outro and the ride is over. Another incredible epic (10 times better than the Atom Heart Mother Suite on the previous record (although that wasn't bad)) is over, and another Pink Floyd album concludes.

Echoes is one of the most incredible pieces of music put onto record in my opinion. And Meddle is one of my favorite Floyd albums, perhaps this is for sentimental reasons as it was the first album i heard; or perhaps due to the amazing track Echoes and the high quality of most of the other songs, I have given this a 5. I think it's a bit generous. Had the scoring been out of 10, Meddle would have achieved a 9 from me, no doubt.

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by Massed Gadgets » Mon Feb 09, 2009 7:00 am

Meddle was the first PF album I heard too, and the third album overall that I ever bought myself. When I first listened to this album, the only other Floyd I had heard was ABITW2 on the radio (which was a hit and whatnot at the time). A friend had told me that there was a song on it that was 23 minutes long, which intrigued me, because I'd never heard of that before outside of classical music (ah, those young and naive days, so long ago). Anyway, my first listening was very much a cathartic experience for me, and it is one of the few albums I can say actually truly changed my life, because it made me aware that there was something else out there besides 4-minute radio pop songs and that music could be something so much more than that. Subjectively then I would give it a 5. But when I'm honest with myself, not every track on it finds favour with me.

I agree with Roger that an album cannot be great when it lacks flow and cohesion. An album should be more than just a collection of random songs (I hate greatest hits packages too), but I disagree somewhat with the notion that Meddle doesn't have flow. I always felt that Pillow of Winds was a beautiful comedown after the intensity of One of These Days, and the mid-tempo Fearless and San Tropez flowed along nicely before a brief bit of gentle levity before side 2 and the brilliant, beautiful, and IMO, absolutely perfect Echoes. Cohesion is another matter, the album is eclectic, I'll say that, but I do think it works fairly well together.

My main problem is the song Fearless, which I've never really liked that much. People usually complain about San Tropez and Seamus, but I love both those songs. San Tropez was one of my favourite mellow tunes back in my high school daze. My friend Dave and I stuck it on once at a high school dance and confused everyone. :lol: But Fearless never did much for me, and the football singing at the end was just plain mystifying (until I learned what it was, then it was just annoying).

So all in all, the majority of this album is classic (Echoes is one of the greatest tracks ever recorded by any band), but the album does lack a little cohesion, and Fearless is kind of blah, so I will give it a 4. Not perfect as an album, but damn good!

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by danielcaux » Mon Feb 09, 2009 2:36 pm

As a standalone song "Seamus" is not really strong, but as a transitional track with a defined albeit minor role within an album is OK, it does the job. I think someone has stated this idea before but don't you think the function "Seamus" has in Meddle is to "clean up the senses" of the listener in order to prepare it for the aural odissey that "Echoes" is? I think of it as the reverse image of the blues jam they used to play live after "Echoes", just to bring the stoned audience "back to earth".

Why people find it so annoying? it's just a regular blues song with a dog howling in tune over it like some kind of organic slide guitar, didn't Led Zeppelin made a career out of that? And it works really well as a movie soundtrack conveying the absurdity of life.

"Echoes" on the other hand is really over rated, is just a dumbed down version of AHM. They had this standalone song and attached to it a totally unrelated and overlong funky jam followed by a SFX section and then the same song again; what a masterpiece! ](*,)

:lol:

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by 2066 » Mon Feb 09, 2009 3:33 pm

4. I agree with Massed Gadgets. I really like the varying dynamics of the album and it really opened my ears to what is out there. Meddle may or may not be "great", but I have to admit that I don't really know what that is, musically speaking. It sure was different back in the day! More often than not, I believe we play music that is complementary to our moods. At those times certain records are "perfect". I listened to it this weekend without even flipping it to side two for Echoes!

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Re: Pink Floyd - Meddle

Post by Stephen » Mon Feb 09, 2009 8:47 pm

I never pay much attention to lyrics but San Tropez is one of the few I know the words to. :D