The Pink Floyd Experience by Spike Steffenhagen & Jay Allen Sanford

The Pink Floyd Experience
written by Spike Steffenhagen & Jay Allen Sanford
Blue Water Productions, 2010

For Pink Floyd fans who don’t want to wade through one of the many weighty biographies of Britain’s most studious studio band. First published in 1991, it claims to have been updated to 2010, but this means it has a few pages of text added to the introduction and a single page added at the back to cover the past twenty years. And, you know, some interesting things happened in the past twenty years!

The artwork is incredibly ugly and the characters’ appearances vary widely from panel to panel, which wouldn’t be a problem with a band of individuals like the Beatles, but with the famously anonymous Pink Floyd it quickly becomes disorientating. Perhaps that’s the point? The few women who appear in the story have enormous round buttocks and no faces -they’re all pointed towards the awesomeness that is the band.

It starts out like a war comic with the death of Roger Waters’ father during WWII, and the mood doesn’t lighten much for the next 240 pages. Syd Barrett’s disintegration is self-narrated using wobbly text which looks like that of Delirium in the Sandman books. Some of the dialogue is from interviews, but there no effort made to distinguish between different speakers using tone or speech charcteristics,  so it all sounds like it’s been said by the same person.

There’s quite a lot of interesting trivia, and the usual litany of cockups, letdowns and ripoffs that stud the history of any long-running band, but this is sure one ugly way to absorb information.

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