Various Artists - "More Relics: A Tribute To Pink Floyd"
(Sysyphus Records 2001, SYSY CD 4204. UG)
From Aural Innovations #20 (July 2002)
Ah yes, another Pink Floyd tribute album. But knowing that this one is put out by the folks who publish Eclipsed, the magazine for Floyd aficionados, I figured real care would be taken in the choice of contributions. And indeed they do. There's little in the way of new interpretations of the songs (the ultimate tribute in my opinion), but most of the entries are well executed and some even take the songs a wee bit in their own direction. All the tracks are from the early years, and most of the bands I've not heard of.
Rüdiger Gieisberg opens the set with a less than exciting take on "Sysyphus" (from Ummagumma). Space rock fans will love Mr Quimby's Beard's version of "Saucerful Of Secrets". RPWL do a very nice "Fat Old Sun" (from Atom Heart Mother). Solar Project shine on the epic "Echoes" (from Meddle). Lots of killer guitar and keyboards and totally tripped out sounds (though Architectural Metaphor still gets the prize for best ever cover of "Echoes"). Liquid Visions do an excellent cover of "Ibiza Bar" (from More). Invisible Unit do a rousing version of "Pow R Toc H" (from The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn). And Masterkey do an absolutely KICK ASS rendition of "Eclipse" (from Dark Side Of The Moon). They really make the song their own. I've never heard of this band but kudos to them.
There's also a couple for rarities fans. Fantasyy Factoryy's entry is "Embryo", a song with an excellent old time jamming psychedelic sound. I didn't recognize this song title but the music sure sounded familiar. A search on the internet turned up that the only recorded version is on a Harvest sampler from 1970 called Picnic, so I'm guessing if I heard it then it was on a bootleg. Another title I didn't recognize was "Baby Blue Shuffle In D Major". Once again I turned to the net which revealed that this is a very early version of "The Narrow Way (Part 1)", later released on "Ummagumma". Comparing it with the Ummagumma album, this is actually the one track on the album that is much better than the Pink Floyd version. Sula Bassana kick out really nice whiney spacey looped guitar lines and freaky dancing synths, all against a head bopping blissful cosmic groove. So simple, yet so nice. Overall a very nice collection.
Sysyphus Records is run by the folks who publish the Pink Floyd magazine Eclipsed. For more information you can visit their web site at: http://www.eclipsed.de.
Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz