Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Radio K.A.O.S. - Roger Waters

No other band has taken the idea of "concept album" as far as Pink Floyd has done. This has resulted in two things. On the one hand, the members of the band who are still playing under the Pink Floyd brand have actually found hard to decouple the songs of albums like The Dark Side of the Moon or The Wall from their original context to play them alive. As a result, the members of the band who kept playing under the Pink Floyd brand have become some kind of Cirque du Soleil of rock and roll: they perform different albums in different tours. One goes to see Pink Floyd playing The Wall plus a couple of other songs, just like seeing "Alegria" or any other Cirque du Soleil performance.

On the other hand, all the members of the band, whether they remained members of Pink Floyd or not, remained committed to doing concept albums exclusively. Thus, all the solo albums of Roger Waters are, in fact, concept albums, including Radio K.A.O.S. This is not bad in itself, but gets repetitive after a while.

Radio K.A.O.S. has been criticized for making too many references to Reagan, Thatcher, and the U.S.S.R. invasion to Afghanistan. I personally don't think this is necessarily bad. If nothing else, Radio K.A.O.S. is a testimony of the political environment of the time. For some reason, people today think that the 80's were this period of stupid and frivolous pop, and part of that is true, but the 80's (particularly the first 5 years) were also very harsh for many people in the developed country, and that inevitably created protests and with them rock and roll. Good rock and roll.

Radio K.A.O.S. is an OK album, with sad lyrics that try to convey a message. The only problem -if it's a problem at all- is that it's too pink floyd-ish, which is kind of sad when you think about how hard Waters tried to disentangle himself from his previous band mates.

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