It was on this day, April 27, 1969 that Pink Floyd appeared at Mothers Club in Erdington, Birmingham, England. Radio 1 D J John Peel reviewed the gig as ‘…sounding like dying galaxies lost in sheer corridors of time and space’. Recordings from this show were included in the group’s 1969 album ” Ummagumma” An appropriate title and response to Peel’s ethereal “Spacey” description of the bands performance! Other reviewers considered it one of the best live recordings ever made.
Unfortunately, Ummagumma would not stand the test of time. Years later, the band seemed embarrassed by the attention that the album received. Waters referred to it as a disaster, Gilmour described the album as ‘horrible’, and according to Mason, the most significant thing about Ummagumma is that “We didn’t do it again.”
In many ways, I think the band is being a bit hard on themselves. Ummagumma was fascinating, bizarre and fleeting – and nothing like it was ever again. Not unlike the even more bizarre asteroid, whose name it so resembles.
Here’s that spacey sound now:
Alas, Ummagumma might sound like a space rock, but what it really referred to was Cambridge slang for getting one’s rocks off in an entirely different way.