"There is no dark side of the moon, really. Matter of fact it's all dark. The only thing that makes it look light is the sun."
—Gerry O'Driscoll, doorman on Abbey Road Studios, closing words
The Dark Side of the Moon is a 1973 Progressive RockConcept Album by Pink Floyd. Considered amongst their best (alongside The Wall) the album remained on the Billboard Top 100 for 15 straight years. And it still remains one of the most sold albums ever, and is, at the time of this writing, only surpassed by Michael Jackson's Thriller and AC/DC's Back in Black. In 2013, it was inducted into the US Library of Congress' National Recording Registry, garnering the most public votes for any entry that year.The album was Pink Floyd's big breakthrough, and made them a mainstream name. But this sudden super-stardom also sowed the seeds to the band's, and especially Roger Waters', later Artist Disillusionment, which became very apparent on the albums Wish You Were Here and The Wall.
Birth/Death Juxtaposition: A common interpretation of the first and last tracks. "Speak to Me" opens with a heartbeat and the sound of a woman screaming, which could represent a baby's birth and a mother's labor pains. "Eclipse" ends with the sound of a heartbeat gradually fading into silence, and its last verse is about the sun being eclipsed by the moon, which could represent death.
Breather Episode: The more upbeat "Money" (if you don't read into the lyrics), placed right after the rather sad "The Great Gig in the Sky".
British English: "But if you ask for a pay rise/It's no surprise/They're giving none away."
Concept Album: The usual interpretation is that the concept is existentialism, shown most clearly in "Eclipse" and the lines in "Breathe" that foreshadow it:
All you touch and all you see
Is all your life will ever be.
Of course, Word of God has it that the songs are about the "pressures in life that can drive you to insanity" - in order: communication, work, travel, time, death, money, society, choice, brain damage and nature.
It could even be considered to be a double concept album, with Side 1 being the cycle of life and death (similar to Side 1 of Simon and Garfunkel's Bookends), and Side 2 being about the various things that can negatively affect us in life, with all of the themes being wrapped together in "Eclipse."
The laughing in "Brain Damage", the ticking clock in "Time", the cash register in "Money", and the heartbeat from the end of "Eclipse"
are played together in "Speak to Me" before being featured individually in later songs.
Freedom from Choice: The title of "Any Colour You Like". Waters named that song after Londoners who would come to his hometown of Cambridge and attempt to sell various items from their trucks, specifically one who attempted to hawk sets of china by saying "Any colour you like, they're all blue".
Some of the quotes that appear and reappear on the album feature people's answers to the question "Did you ever have a fight and were you in your right?" Everyone automatically believes he or she was in their right.
"Us & Them" is an entire plea against human conflicts for what are generally stupid reasons.
"Money": about money being the root of all evil, yet nobody seems to be able to escape from it.
Long Runner: 741 weeks - 15 straight years - on the Billboard Hot 200 chart. When Billboard began allowing recurrent albums back into the chart in 2009, the album returned to the chart within two weeks and has racked up 25+ further weeks since then. In 2012, it passed 800 non-consecutive weeks on the Billboard 200.
It's estimated that the album still sells around 8,000 copies per week.
Spoken Word In Music: Some songs include samples of people talking, who were answering questions such as "When was the last time you were violent?", "Were you in the right?", "Are you afraid of death?" or "What is the dark side of the moon?". Among the people interviewed were Paul McCartney and his wife Linda, but their answers weren't used as the band thought they were too generic - Paul's Wings bandmate Denny Laine supplied the "I dunno, I was really drunk at the time" heard in the transition between "Money" and "Us and Them".
The song shifts from 7/4 to 4/4 only because that was the only way that David Gilmour could get the guitar solo right. The transition winds up being one of the most distinctive moments on the record, making it Awesome Yet Practical.
All of the band members and Alan Parsons, the engineer for the album, has stated that this is a coincidence.
David Gilmour: Some guy with too much time on his hands had this idea of combining Wizard of Oz with Dark Side of the Moon.
They do have quite a few moments that match well with each other, but it wasn't on purpose. For that matter, deliberately synchronising the album in production would have added a not inconsiderable amount of effort and expense, since the early 1970s were rather short on convenient ways to play movies in the recording studio.
Not that it would require much. Just pick specific times to change the song - wouldn't even need the movie playing in real-time. Plus, there's editing. In addition, the band reportedly did the same thing with 2001: A Space Odyssey as well. (In addition, too much of the "coincidences" are too on the nose, right down to the cyclone timing and the beating of a heart at the end. Even the album cover seems to refer to The Wizard of Oz.)
Ur Example: "On The Run" is a trance techno number... recorded in 1973.