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He was also, at the least, a competent bassist: he played very few passages that were at all flashy, and he had little interest in hardening up the band's sound with his instrument, but the few times he brought his instrument to the front betrayed solid abilities.His voice was never that great, but then again it's hard to imagine somebody else singing most of his parts.When LSD started to destroy Barrett's ability to function, though, the band hired guitarist David Gilmour as a stage replacement, and eventually as a full-time replacement.Most of A Saucerful of Secrets features Gilmour instead of Barrett, and by the time of More Barrett was gone, off to attempt a short-lived solo career.They were one of the most technophilian bands I've ever heard in my life, relying on sound effects like mad and featuring all kinds of processed keyboard and guitar noises, yet it is extremely rare to find somebody nowadays who considers a classic Pink Floyd album "artificial" sounding.

They were one of the best representatives of the underground psychedelic London scene of 1967, yet unlike so many other good bands that originated in that era, they were able to successfully evolve into something better and WAY more popular, even after losing their frontman and main creative force after one album.

Frankly, it's not close: DSOTM and Animals are firmly entrenched in my top 50, with WYWH in my top 150, while the pre-DSOTM period has one top 100 album (Piper), a probable top 150 album (Ummagumma, with a live album that would be rated much higher but also with an inconsistent studio offering) and a couple of others that might make it into my top 200 (I've never actually bothered to rank my collection out that far, this is just a guestimate based on my site's ratings).

There's little question in my mind that the band really figured out how to best focus its talents around 1972, around the time of Live at Pompeii and the DSOTM sessions.

Given the fact that the band has its own wing in the R&R Hall of Fame (run by Rolling Stone), you'd think that would mean that RS loves their catalogue, throwing out stars to them in a way reserved only for the Beatles and the Stones. A look at the shows that DSOTM and WYWH get 5 stars, Piper at the Gates of Dawn and The Wall get 4 a piece, and all the rest 2 or 3.

Given that the guide makes it a point to denounce the remainder of the band's catalogue as experimental garbage, it confuses me how a set of four albums can somehow merit this much praise.

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