Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

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

Rate this album

5 - Best
19
30%
4
8
13%
3
16
25%
2
6
9%
1 - Worst
15
23%
 
Total votes: 64

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by Idisaffect » Mon May 31, 2010 3:29 am

oz1701 wrote:i feel that Eric is trying to sound like David
Don't you think his tone on all of those songs is too clean if he is trying to sound like Gilmour? It sounds like standard blues guitar to me. Both his tone and his choice of notes.

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by Jacek » Sun Jul 25, 2010 3:10 am

Currently my favorite Roger Waters solo album (it displaced Radio KAOS some time ago), but I also find it to be a brilliant record in its own right. Sure, it does revolve around just a few simple melodies and musical motifs, but I don't mind because, in the context of this particular project, such an approach works; I like the way the narrative is grounded in them, and the subtle changes that take place each time they come around again. I've been listening to Pros & Cons for years, and wasn't aware that this was simply an expansion of what Roger did with some of the melodies in The Final Cut, but it seems to me that he got some good practice there, then took the approach to an extreme here - successfully.

The most recent time I listened to this record was at nighttime, by candlelight, and it was an awesome experience. As an earlier poster said, it really is just one long song, and because of the lighter (though still plenty emotional) story it is easier to take in than, say, The Wall. Even with the absence of the other Floyd members, I honestly think this record comes hot on the heels of The Wall in terms of quality. True, Clapton may not have much flare in his guitar-playing here, but he sounds great enough to keep me from missing Gilmour (which is not true in the case of Amused to Death, alas), and the songwriting and composition matches and often even tops that on the Wall. I love the flexibility of the story as well, the mixture of dream & reality. Also, props to Roger for using those female vocalists he loves so much right for once (well, the title track aside).

I like the idea of The Wall, The Final Cut, and this record forming a "trilogy" - it does seem that all three emerged from the same creative space and informed each other heavily, despite their differences. In fact, after my most recent listen to Pros & Cons, I realized (to my own surprise, mind) that it may actually be my favorite of the three (although I'm long overdue a front-to-back relisten of The Wall, which may very well knock this back into second place).

In any case, I do truly consider this record a masterpiece. Someone posted earlier that they wish Roger could have kept on going down this same road, but I don't think that was really possible; the period during which most of this "trilogy" was conceived (which I believe happened around the same time - when Dave and Rick were recording their first solo albums, yes?) was clearly an extremely fruitful one for Roger (by far his best, IMO - most of what he wrote before and/or after just doesn't compare, excellent as much of it is). I don't think Radio K.A.O.S. and Amused to Death were the results of significantly different decisions in terms of where to take his music; Roger's inspiration was simply at its high point here, and of course the great Muses come and go as they please...

5/5

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by David Smith » Sun Jul 25, 2010 3:43 pm

One thing that really makes this album stand out is it's about the only time that Waters delves heavily in to the territory of exploring romantic relationships, or certainly at least more so than The Wall and TFC wherein the broken love stories took a back-seat to the rest of the album's themes.

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by Jacek » Sun Jul 25, 2010 5:07 pm

David Smith wrote:One thing that really makes this album stand out is it's about the only time that Waters delves heavily in to the territory of exploring romantic relationships, or certainly at least more so than The Wall and TFC wherein the broken love stories took a back-seat to the rest of the album's themes.
Right! That definitely contributes significantly to my appreciation for this record, too. It is impressive how much ground he covers and how well he does it all: the unspoken tension of the opening track, the glimpses of hope in For the First Time Today before the letdown of Go Fishing, and of course the positive (but realistically tentative) conclusion - and that's not even all. As [almost] always, Roger's lyric writing is top-notch.

Also, I forgot to stand up in my original post for the German festival section. I think it fits in there wonderfully, and is one of those quirky but effective asides that flesh out the album & story so well.

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by princessDungan74D » Fri Nov 19, 2010 10:40 pm

It is a great album and one of my favorite Roger Waters album and Pink Floyd album and I admit it is very funny but the album can be pretty creepy at points for me as a woman. I am not saying its a bit of an over share album or its a bad album its just creepy at points. It is a funny album and its a great album. Trust me Roger has talent and can get away with this kind of album.

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by Djgilmour » Sun Nov 21, 2010 1:13 pm

This album is an amazing piece of art, it's a masterpiece. I love to play this album in my car on a hot summer day, 5/5.

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by J Ed » Sun Nov 21, 2010 9:14 pm

libby wrote:the album can be pretty creepy at points for me as a woman
I dont doubt this, Roger reveals quite a bit of ugly misogyny on this albuma as well as side 2 of The Wall
the advertising campaign for this album featured the album cover art reproduced as a giant billboard and was protested by feminist groups as objectifying women
the model (Linzi Drew) Roger hired for the cover, the video and Nicholas Roeg's concert films was a porn actress so the feminists werent wrong in that case

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by Djgilmour » Sun Nov 21, 2010 10:36 pm

J Ed wrote:
libby wrote:the album can be pretty creepy at points for me as a woman
I dont doubt this, Roger reveals quite a bit of ugly misogyny on this albuma as well as side 2 of The Wall
the advertising campaign for this album featured the album cover art reproduced as a giant billboard and was protested by feminist groups as objectifying women
the model (Linzi Drew) Roger hired for the cover, the video and Nicholas Roeg's concert films was a porn actress so the feminists werent wrong in that case
Doesn't every woman want to go out in the country to feel the power of His engine :lol: ?

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by Idisaffect » Mon Nov 22, 2010 1:10 am

J Ed wrote:
libby wrote:the album can be pretty creepy at points for me as a woman
I dont doubt this, Roger reveals quite a bit of ugly misogyny on this albuma as well as side 2 of The Wall
the advertising campaign for this album featured the album cover art reproduced as a giant billboard and was protested by feminist groups as objectifying women
And then there is the whole verse where he refers to Yoko Ono as a bitch and questions if she understood the music. He references "Shane"- and say's something about "selling tickets while the buzzards circled over the body on the plain". She suggests that he should jump into the sea. Pretty funny, actually.

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by princessDungan74D » Wed Nov 24, 2010 7:25 am

I think this was his mid-life crisis album but not that I don't like the album its pretty creepy. Not as creepy as most rap music though when they rap about women.

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by J Ed » Sun Sep 25, 2011 8:27 pm

Pros & Cons = the 3rd Floyd lp I was able to purchase on the day of its release

if any more proof were needed Floyd was expired this was it,
it was, like Gilmours solo effort, a very ambitious new product that required no input from the rest of the band
and sounded a heck of a lot like the Final Cut, except for the guitar parts (and of course that album sounded nothing like any previous Floyd album)

I liked it plenty at the time of its release even if noone else did, all the sonic details I dug from The Wall were there, he made great use of the stereo landscape to present his story as a widescreen fiim in audio form, and I liked the story he was trying to tell
hogtownbro wrote:When you study English Literature, one of the first things you are taught is that ending any story with it all being a dream is "poetic fallacy". I think you can say Roger committed poetic fallacy in the case of this album.
I cant agree with this
when I see David Lynch films I hear other people make the same comment "its all just a dream so why should I care"
well, for one thing the dream tells us something about the dreamer
its like the convention of the unreliable narrator in fiction except it goes a step deeper and really tells us stuff the dreamer does not want to know about himself but the subconcious forces him to acknowledge anyway
and is an excuse for some great surrealistic images

aside from the dream structure I like the imagery, its all roadtrip imagery and I like roadtrips
being a geography geek I see the world this way anyway, and can personally relate to the hitchhiking, the travels in europe, the dream of moving to the country, the truckstop epiphanies
and I think Claptons bluesy guitar suits all this better than Gilmours more epic style would have


the tour for this was the first time I ever saw any member of the Floyd live
Roger opened with Set the Controls, and a few songs in did If, which I always assumed was included as it was an early attempt at the confessional singersongwriter mode he would play round with throughout his solo career
and the whole second set was his new album, which nobody in the audience seemed to be familiar with (or was much impressed with judging by conversations postshow)
most impressive to me was the three massive filmscreens he had set up above the stage, stretching the width of Maple Leaf Gardens, and on which he projected an allnew film illustrating the narrative from director Nicholas Roeg (Performance, Man Who Fell to Earth) and more cartoons from Gerald Scarfe ... these projections, only used for this tour, are languishing forgotten in the basement of one of Rogers mansions to this day and deserve to be seen once more

note also: aside from the sexy buttocks, the album cover was very minimalist compared to classic Floyd packaging
but the souvenir program sold at the concerts fit the album sleeve precisely and added many pages of illustrations "flesh"ing out the Pros & Cons experience
anybody who has the vinyl should endeavour to get a copy of this program

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by jempaul1959 » Wed Feb 06, 2013 9:55 pm

Hi all, new to this site so a quick word on the journey (stick with me ... it will make sense). Chatting to a friend (we're both in our 50s and major PF fans) we got to lamenting the loss of the late, great Richard Wright whom we both agreed was the most 'musically interesting' of the four Floyds. Later, nostalgically flicking through my albums (as one does) I came across Pros and Cons which, ironically, while having nothing to do with Rick Wright, struck me as an album I haven't played for many years. Indeed, to my surprise I realised it celebrates its 30th birthday this very year as is! So span it and, guess what, was amazed at how well it sounded after all this time. Seeking other opinions, I found my way to this forum and was interested in the comments herein. Can't agree with the esteemed contributor who didn't much care for Clapton's guitar work. I'm not a musician but it sounds pretty flawless to me and there's a sort of clinical ruthlessness to the blues playing that struck me as very in keeping with the piece overall. Loved the slide work, too - especially in duet with (I think) Michael Kamen at the piano at the end of Side 1. (Always felt that EC was at his best when playing for/with/against someone else). Indeed, as I recall Kamen had worked with Clapton as far back as 1985 on the Edge of Darkness TV theme and I know that Kamen was involved with The Wall even further back in '79. Interesting little three-way thing going on there, I think. Another forum contributor mentioned the 'stereo landscape' of the Pros and Cons album which is a phrase I wish I'd thought of myself because it does sum up so well that whole Floyd and, I suspect, particularly the Waters attitude to production values and the extra dimension that you can bring to 12 inches of flat plastic (as it was back then). I have to say Pros and Cons tends to make my missus jump (she gets particularly annoyed by David Sanborn whom she describes as 'over-employed on this record') with it's start-stop dream/nightmare alternations and while I'm not sure I go along with the vague suggestions of inherent misogyny, I would concede that this is not an album I instinctively feel would appeal to as many women as it would men. Anyway, 30 years on and it came ripping out of my speakers like it was yesterday (figuratively speaking, of course). Sorry Mr Wright ... your turn next!

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by RonToon » Fri Feb 08, 2013 4:24 pm

I don't feel that any of Roger's solo work has held up well over time, including Pink Floyd's "The Final Cut." Pros & Cons lacks musicality and is very uneven, KAOS is an overblown concept with a horrible 80's production, and ATD is dated and too wordy albeit his strongest effort of the lot.

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by Morty » Sat Nov 15, 2014 6:49 pm

My favorite Waters album. It has an interesting concept, adult themes and some great storytelling. 4:56 AM (For the First Time Today, Part 1) and 4:58 AM (Dunroamin, Duncarin, Dunlivin) are just amazing sad tracks.

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Re: Roger Waters - The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking

Post by Hadrian » Fri Nov 13, 2015 12:16 am

I know what I am about to ask is a bit tangential, but I am hoping that some of you here had a chance to see The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking tour with Eric Clapton back in the day (the 1984 leg of that tour, that is...).

What I am curious about is Clapton's take on the Pink Floyd material that he played during those concerts. What that sounded like? Did he simply emulate the studio recordings ('copy-cat David' approach), or did he improvised a bit and created his own stylistic take on those familiar numbers? I haven't heard much about this (and there is no concert album and/or video from the tour to consult); I am assuming that it was the former, but hoping it was the latter.