Pink Floyd has an impressive discography of fifteen studio albums. Despite their iconic songs like “Another Brick in the Wall” and “Wish You Were Here” that have solidified their place in rock history, there are some equally commendable tracks that have gone unnoticed by the public.
In a candid interview with Uncut Magazine in 2017, David Gilmour, the legendary guitarist of the band, highlighted one of these underrated masterpieces from their collection. The surprising part is that this hidden gem, “Fat Old Sun,” is from the album ‘Atom Heart Mother,’ which Gilmour admittedly isn’t particularly fond of.
“It’s a track that has been, unjustly, largely overlooked,” Gilmour expressed. His affection for this particular song was so profound that he strongly advocated for its inclusion in the 2001 compilation ‘Echoes’. Regrettably, his appeals fell on deaf ears.
“In my view, it’s a piece where everything just magically came together. I championed it with all my might for ‘Echoes’, but to no avail,” he lamented.
The irony lies in the fact that “Fat Old Sun,” with its engaging funk flair, emerges from an album that Gilmour has grown somewhat embarrassed of over time. After Syd Barrett’s departure, Pink Floyd found themselves at a crossroads, searching for their unique voice and experimenting with diverse sounds.
However, not all of these musical explorations were successful. For Gilmour, “Atom Heart Mother,” released in 1970, represented a moment where the band’s inherent artistic genius failed to shine in the recording studio. Their live performances were electrifying, showcasing their undeniable ability to improvise and captivate audiences. Unfortunately, that vibrancy failed to translate into this particular album.
Reflecting on this phase, Gilmour confessed to Mojo in 2001, “We were at a loss during those recording sessions. Live, we were in our element, effortlessly improvising. But in the studio, that magic was elusive.” He continued, “It was a bold concept for an album, but the execution left much to be desired. I revisited ‘Atom Heart Mother’ not too long ago, and it was a cringing experience. It felt like we were groping in the dark, devoid of inspiration. However, this low point paved the way for a surge of creativity that followed.”
The band’s resilience and talent are evident in their ability to create tracks that resonate with passion and soul, even during what they perceive as a low period. This serves as a reminder that artistry is not just about the end result, but also about the journey.