This past week, Pink Floyd released their first album in 20 years, The Endless River, culled from recording sessions that took place in 1994 around the time of their last album, The Division Bell. While peppered with outtakes, it sounds like a cohesive, complete work, and it is definitely an accomplished work in its own right.
That being said, hardcore Floydians know that this isn't all that's left in the vault. While much of it has been bootlegged, several more full albums' worth of material recorded throughout the band's career are just sitting around waiting for an official release. Here are a few others I'd love to see the band issue for the first time.
La Carrera Panamericana
This film released in 1992 details an auto race that David Gilmour, Nick Mason and Pink Floyd manager Steve O'Rourke competed in. Pink Floyd convened to record an instrumental soundtrack, which as yet has never seen any official release. The only bootlegged recordings are taken straight from the film itself, but one has to think there's a lot more to it than that.
The Colors of Infinity While this isn't a Pink Floyd recording, it's still an unreleased treasure related to the band. In 1995, David Gilmour composed the soundtrack to this film all about fractals, with narration by 2001 author Arthur C. Clarke. For my money, it's always been one of my favorite Gilmour instrumental works, but, like La Carrera Panamericana, the only recordings to date are taken directly from the film itself.
Gilmour also composed two other such film soundtracks, one for Ruby Takes a Trip and the other for The Art of Tripping, neither of which have been released. A box set containing all three would be a very welcome addition to the catalogue.
Syd Barrett Rarities During the period when Syd Barrett was leading Pink Floyd in the late '60s, the band recorded much more material than ever saw the light of day. However, a few canceled singles, early demos and random other recordings eventually made their way into the hands of bootleggers.
That being said, much of this material has never seen an official release, including great songs like "Scream Thy Last Scream" and "Vegetable Man." This is a shame, given what a gifted songwriter Barrett was and how little music he actually made. It would be wonderful to hear fully remastered versions of these compositions make their way onto an official album release.
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The Committee In 1968, Pink Floyd recorded the soundtrack to this obscure film and promptly forgot about it. The sessions have been bootlegged, but have thus far never seen an official release. Like much of their early soundtrack work, the only way to hear it is in the context of the film.
Zabriskie Point This is another soundtrack work recorded by Pink Floyd, but what makes it unique is that it has seen various forms of official release. Though difficult to find, many of the songs recorded for the film have been released as the soundtrack to the film, along with recordings by Jerry Garcia and other artists.
That being said, there has never been a completely unabridged version of Pink Floyd's work for the film released. In fact, there are many outtakes and recordings from the session that have only made their way onto bootlegs. It would be great to see a Floyd-only version of the soundtrack, featuring all the work they did for it and not just a few songs.
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