British Winter Tour ’74 (Sirene-047)
Trentham Gardens, Stoke-On-Trent, England – November 19th, 1974
Disc 1 (47:21): Raving & Drooling, You Gotta Be Crazy, Shine On You Crazy Diamond *Taken from the original analog LP British Winter Tour 74
Disc 2 (77:36): -Dark Side Of The Moon- Speak To Me, Breathe In The Air, On The Run, Time, Breathe In The Air (reprise), The Great Gig In The Sky, Money, Us & Them, Any Colour You Like, Brain Damage, Eclipse -encore- Echoes
Pink Floyd’s Stoke-On-Trent concert in 1974 has a long, famous history behind it. After the worldwide critical and commercial success of Dark Side Of The Moon in the spring of 1973 expectations were high for the band’s follow up. Floyd debuted new material during a short tour of France in the summer of 1974 and brought the same show to England in November of that year.
A couple of enterprising British fans taped this concert and the three new songs, “Raving & Drooling”, “You Gotta Be Crazy”, and “Shine On You Crazy Diamond” were released on vinyl in early 1975. The sales of this title were very high (rumored to be about 10,000) for a bootleg and it served as a stop gag for new material until the official release of the Wish You Were Here LP in September of that year.
For thirty years the first set was all that circulated until late last year. The second set, consisting of Dark Side Of The Moon and “Echoes”, surfaced on tape and was distributed in the Pink Floyd ROIO community.
Many questions have been raised about the authenticity of the tape (there is no mention on the tape of the venue), but comparisons with other tapes from the era have lead to the conclusion that this is indeed the Stoke show. The first disc is a straight copy of the vinyl complete with surface noise and the second disc is taken from a low generation tape. Collectors are further scratching their heads: Does the first source exist on tape? Is the second tape source complete?
Be that as it may, Sirene’s latest release is the first commercial bootleg of this famous show. The songs fade out between the tracks on the first (as per the vinyl), and there is a fade out between “The Great Gig In The Sky” and “Money”, probably for a tape flip. The sound quality is a bit thin but very good, listenable and enjoyable. It is fascinating to hear the songs from the first set, basically their two next albums in embryonic form.
“You Gotta Be Crazy” sounds like David Gilmour singing in rap and the compete “Shine On” without the mystical keyboard beginning. The band is obviously more confident in the second set playing the complete Dark Side LP and the favorite “Echoes”. It is great that Sirene have finally made this show available and another worthy addition to their excellent catalogue.