Does Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon still hold after 50 years?

Charlie Eggers, Editor

It would be a crime not to have “Dark side of the Moon” within the top ten of any list pertaining to rock. “Dark Side of the Moon” is in the top three best-selling albums of all time as well as being on the billboard 200 for 946 weeks. In addition, the album boasts around 1.7 billion streams on Spotify.

At the end of this month, Pink Floyd will be celebrating its 50th anniversary since the release of “Dark Side of the Moon”. Before we jump into its significance, let’s have a brief look at the history behind the album.

Originally Released on March 1st, 1973, “Dark Side of the Moon” was the eighth studio album by Pink Floyd. The album was produced by the band’s long-time producer, Alan Parsons, and was recorded at Abbey Road Studios in London. The production of the album spanned between May 1972 and January 1973. The album’s concept was inspired by singer and guitarist Roger Waters’ reflections on human life and the pressures of modern society.

The Album takes a progressive approach with the addition of synthesizers and unconventional sound effects and samples. The use of these sounds and samples created an atmosphere and added depth to the storytelling portrayed in each song. Pink Floyd also took inspiration from Blues and Jazz recordings which are very evident with the saxophone solos that are riddled in the album.

There are 10 songs on the album spanning 42 minutes and 53 seconds. One of the key features that also makes this album so unique and special is that each song flows perfectly into the other. This gives the listener the opportunity to listen to the album as if the album was a single song. Each member of the band is at their best and every song showcases their musical ability. Whether it is the guitar solos in such songs as “Any Colour You Like” and “Money” or the softer solos such as the piano solo in “great gig in the sky”. No matter what solo you hear, each piece is an individual masterpiece that fits perfectly within the album.

The album takes on themes such as greed, conflict, time, death, and mental illness. Many of these themes are still at the forefront of popular culture and are still relevant to college students today.
When asking college students why they are still infatuated with the album, sophomore Thomas Fritz had this to say,

The album is legendary and is one of the only full albums that I can listen to through its entirety. The album itself is riddled with different meanings. My favorite song is “Time”. The reason why this is my all-time favorite song is that no matter what age you are college student or old-time still has relevance to us all. The album turning 50 and still having an impact on people my age and younger just shows the power it possesses and how special it is.

— Thomas Fritz

As Thomas Fritz said the songs that are sung and are said in the lyrics provoke deep thinking in oneself. The themes that were said earlier also become very apparent as you listen. In such songs as “Money,” you can pick up very easily that the song is about greed. In other songs, it may take time to understand the deeper meaning such as “Us and Them” where it takes on the haunting meditation on the divisiveness of human relationships and the impact of war.

Overall the album is one of the best of all time, if not the greatest. The themes that are displayed and the thought that was put behind the album doesn’t happen often in today’s music industry. Pink Floyd’s “Dark side of the moon” will continue to reach new heights and new listeners and hopefully, inspire a younger generation of music listeners. The album has recently also inspired new artists to make music like it. Rapper Lil yachty recently attempted to replicate Pink Floyd’s sound in “great gig in the sky” to his own song “The Black Seminole”. So I come back to the title question: does “Dark Side of the Moon” still stand as a good album? The answer is a confident yes and will be a great album for another 50 years.