The Oxfam Concert (Godfather Records GR 361/362)
A Benefit For War On Want, Wembley, London, England – October 21st, 1972
Disc 1 (45:55): Speak To Me/Breathe, On The Run, Time, Breathe (reprise), The Great Gig In The Sky, Money, Us & Them, Any Colour You Like, Brain Damage, Eclipse
Disc 2 (66:44): One Of These Days, Careful With That Axe Eugene, Echoes, Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun, blues
Between a lengthy US tour in the summer and a tour of continental Europe, Pink Floyd played a show in Wembley in London. Their first date in England since March, it was a charity date for Oxfam and the “War On Want.” They had a long association with Oxfam and they played their first concert in a big venue on December 12th, 1966 at the Royal Albert Hall for the charity. In the ensuing six years they grew in stature and fame and this Oxfam gig occurs right on the cusp of superstardom.
The Oxfam Concerton Godfather is the very first silver release of this show made available. There are two tape sources in circulation and the usual practice on fan based CDR remasters has been to use the excellent quality recording supplemented by the inferior source for the tunings. Godfather choose instead to use only the first, very good sounding recording which means the mc before “One Of These Days” and the lengthy tunings in the second half are absent but this is musically complete and sounds wonderful.
A lengthy review in Sounds states: “From the word go, they gave the packed stadium a faultless demonstration of what psychedelic music is all about. There wasn’t a note, or a sound, out of place during the whole evening…For starters, on Saturday, we had that lengthy work entitled ‘Dark Side Of the Moon,’ and eerie title for an equally eerie piece of music that takes the listener through a host of different moods, most of which are accompanied by unusual sounds stretching around his head by way of the group’s quadraphonic sound system.
“The second half of the recital was composed of three more major pieces, and a couple of encores. The first – the riveting ‘Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun’ – was obviously rehearsed, but the second – a bluesy jam – wasn’t. It served a useful purpose to show that the group are not confined to playing science fiction soundtrack music all the time. The incendiary gimmicks from the stage frequently obliterated the artists. Flash-bombs erupted here and there at well timed places, and Roger Waters gong actually became a blazing sun during ‘Set The Controls.’ All the time the group were effectively illuminated by their imposing lighting tower at the rear of the stage which served a dual purpose – at frequent intervals it belched out smoke which mingled with the colored lights and the dry ice surface mist to effectively whisk us all away to Planet Floyd.”