Pink Floyd, easily one of the biggest and most influential names in rock and roll history, has been inactive since 1994, save for a few notable one-off performances. Those lucky enough to witness a show by any incarnation of Floyd, be it David Gilmour’s later-era band, Roger Waters’ over-the top 70’s edition, or even Syd Barrett’s madcap original line up, have their memories, but many of today’s Floyd fans weren’t alive early enough to have had the opportunity to see them.
It is with this in mind that professional, well-intentioned tribute groups like Michigan’s own Echoes of Pink Floyd, formerly The Surrogate Band, provide a multi-sensory, ‘next-best-thing’ concert experience that works very well in venues the size of Jackson’s Michigan Theater, or the now defunct Temple Club in Lansing. The band provides not just the big hits of Pink Floyd, but a few deep cuts for the hardcore fans, along with a ton of smoke, lights and recently, the band added a full lazer show to their concert experience. Saturday, February 5th in Jackson, the band treated the packed-house crowd to a rendition of many Floyd standards, including the entirety of The Dark Side of The Moon played against the Wizard of Oz on the Floyd-replica round screen.
The band executed the performance of the album as recorded with near perfection, notable in that it synchronized with the film almost exactly as playing the album with the film would. Most Floyd fans have been aware of the debatable linkage of this album and movie for many years, but it was a treat to see the synchronicity included in a live performance of the classic songs which of course include “Time”, “Money”, “Us and Them” and “Brain Damage”.
The band took an intermission, much in the style of an actual Pink Floyd concert, and returned with a second set full of big hits and a few album tracks that blended nicely from song to song. There were a few technical issues during “Welcome to the Machine”, but by time the set closed with “Echoes”, the tribute band’s namesake track from 1971’s Meddle, there was not a skeptical Floyd fan in the house who had not been won over by the fantastic work of this group. This performance was particularly notable as the band played the entire track as recorded on the album, with no edits for time, meaning the entire 25 minutes, which also makes this track the longest in their catalog.
Aside from a bit of a clusterfunk at the box office window at the venue, the concert was fantastic and the crowd had an experience they’re likely not to forget, and to look forward to having again when the band returns to Jackson later this year.
The Set List:
Speak To Me
On The Run/Somewhere Over The Rainbow
The Great Gig In The Sky
Us And Them
Any Colour You Like
One Of These Days
Welcome To The Machine
Another Brick In The Wall (part 1)
The Happiest Days Of Our Lives
Another Brick In The Wall (part 2)
Run Like Hell