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Pink Floyd - Knebworth 1990 pre-performance history film Print E-mail

The 1990 Pink Floyd performance at Knebworth was notable for a number of reasons - not least the weather which forced the circular screen to have it's screen removed, leaving just the frame and lights in situ. However, the most exciting thing was a film, compiled by Nick Mason apparently, showing the history of the band. This was played to the crowds before they came on stage to close the show...and is reviewed here.

Some time ago I was given the opportunity to view the full Knebworth pre-show video in the sort of comfort that was sadly lacking on the day itself. As the film has not since appeared in any form I shall share my notes with you for those who had the misfortune/forsight to miss the Knebworth extravaganza.

The roughly twenty-one minutes of the film are simply described as they happen - the picture you build in your mind should fill any gaps in the narrative below. All timings are approximate...

One of the most amusing things about the screening of the video was the 120,000-odd people staring in puzzlement as scenes unfolded of vintage Floyd - many of those present probably had a "Best Of" knowledge of the band, and were unprepared for the likes of Pow R Toc H!


0 - 2 minutes:

[The sound of running water fits in gaps between the songs quoted] Picture shows Man in a room (same chaps as in the aMLoR videos), pours wine and drinks while picture switches back and forth of Floyd/Syd playing in a garden (Super8 film). Man looks restless, begins to write. Piper sleeve rotates, Lucifer Sam plays and various pics/cuttings shown.

2 - 4 minutes:

Man ponders with clothes peg. Arnold Layne promo. Cut to Man thinking with Pow R Toc H playing. Various cuttings/ads/pictures from 1967 shown.

4 - 6 minutes:

See Emily Plays plays(!) with Super8 film of looning in a park - mainly Syd. Man experiments with chemicals. Snippet of Look Of The Week Interstellar Overdrive. Man looks at orange, puzzled.

6 - 8 minutes:

Scarecrow video. Man walks across room. Cut back to video with PF falling about in slow motion. Man then flails arms in time with the audience in a clip from UFO 1967.

8 - 10 minutes:

Saucerful Of Secrets plays with pictures of 5 piece Floyd. It Would Be So Nice video follows (shot in a studio - in full colour). Man looks amused. Point Me At The Sky video, and shows Man windswept.

10 - 12 minutes:

Set The Controls video. Man looks thoughtful. Next, film of PF playing Sysyphus circa 1969 in a studio setting - a great, weird improvisational section of the song. Man shakes head - and starts playing imaginary drums in time with Saucerful Of Secrets from Pompeii. Cut to clip from film of this.

12 - 14 minutes:

One Of These Days video from Pompeii intercut with Delicate Sound Of Thunder (DSOT). Man draws a symbol on paper. Us And Them from Pompeii/DSOT plays.

14 - 17 minutes:

Man paces room. Pigs (Three Different Ones) accompanies film of piggie over Battersea Power Station. Man sits on floor and starts rowing to the sound of Signs Of Life. Video of same from DSOT starts.

Final minutes:

Man picks up sheaf of wheat. Learning To Fly video (version 2) is played in full. The screen fades and... Pink Floyd take to the stage...


Conclusion

A cracking compilation of some great moments of Pink Floyd's history. The quality of the footage was superb too - and begs the question: why no video anthology release? Other bands do it - why can't the Floyd? With the footage here, and that which has cropped up elsewhere, there is more than enough to form a comprehensive record of their career...

 
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