Friday, January 01, 2021

1970 Album of the Week, January 1-7: The Madcap Laughs, by Syd Barrett

I mentioned in an earlier post that I have a plan involving 50-year-old music to increase my post count. I didn't mention that I don't want it to be boring, because that should go without saying, but I'm saying it now anyway. So here's my train of thought:

I notice that a lot of the music I'm listening to and enjoying lately was released in 1970. It seems to have been a very good year, music-wise.

So my plan is to, each week, pick an album that was released 50 years ago that week, and encourage you to listen to it. I won't try to sell it to you via an affiliate link or anything. I'll just suggest you give it some attention and see if you like it.

I may or may not comment on any given album in an extended way. That's kind of mood-dependent. There will be some weeks for which no albums released 50 years prior really do that much for me (I'll say so when that's the case).

There will also be some weeks for which no albums show up on Wikipedia as having been released in 1970. But for each month, there are some undated -within-the-month releases noted, so when there's nothing marked for a given week (or when everything marked for that week strikes me as truly unworthy of note), I'll go with something released that month without date information available.

Let me know what you think in comments about both the idea and the implementation. If it works out -- that is if you enjoy reading it and I enjoy writing it -- this new feature alone is good for 52 posts in 2021.

Without further ado:

This week's 1970 Album of the Week is The Madcap Laughs, by Syd Barrett, released on  January 3, 1970. It's the first of Barrett's two solo albums after leaving Pink Floyd.

Personally I prefer the two Floyd albums that include Barrett (The Piper at the Gates of Dawn and A Saucerful of Secrets) to the band's later album offerings. There are some later Floyd songs I like better than I like anything on those two albums, and better than anything Barrett recorded solo ("Wish You Were Here" is probably my favorite song from the Floyd/Barrett oeuvre) but I listen to those first two albums more often and with more joy than, say, The Dark Side of the Moon. And I like The Madcap Laughs quite a bit, too.

Have a listen to Barrett's "Here I Go" (and to the rest of the album!):

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