If there’s one thing in particular that Pink Floyd is known for — even more than its work on the frontiers of prog rock or its mastery of the album as a cohesive artistic statement — it’s putting on one hell of a show. Trippy colours and lights and animation. A plane soaring over the arena before exploding in a fiery crash. A giant inflatable pig hovering above the audience. A vast wall, built up of large white bricks, rising gradually on the stage until it obscures the band entirely.
But one of the outstanding moments in the band’s history was a moment of avant-garde anti-spectacle — an appearance at the Royal Festival Hall in 1969 during which, for one number, the band built a table on stage with a saw, hammer and nails.
“In a rhythmic way,” emphasises Roger Waters, the bassist turned driving force of Pink Floyd at the band’s peak. At 74, Waters readily admits that his memories of the earliest days of pre-fame Pink Floyd can be hazy, but he recalls this show distinctly and with more than a little amusement.
“When we finished that number,” he goes on, “we sat around it having a cup of tea and listening to the radio. That appealed to my sense of the absurd. I liked that a lot. You could say that in a way we were doing Marcel Duchamp.”
It was also a display of cosy harmony between four young men whose discord and infighting would eventually tear the band apart.
Read the full story at The Australian.