When most of us look back at the work we did in college, we don’t have much that’s tangible to show for it other than stacks of papers that nobody will ever want to read. The students at University Of Massachusetts Lowell, on the other hand, will always have their performance of a really good cover of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side Of The Moon as a memento of what they got up to when they were young (and life was long and there was time to kill today).
The most immediately impressive aspect of the video, which works through the entirety of the album, is the instrumentation. The group—they call themselves the Pink Floyd Ensemble—are all clearly very talented, and there are enough of them in one place that they’re capable of covering all of Dark Side’s interludes and solos. Despite preserving the record’s scope, not every aspect of the album is recreated entirely faithfully. Sometimes, the result isn’t quite what you’d want—especially if you’ve heard the original version a million times before—but at other moments, like at several points during the group’s “Us And Them,” the slightly reworked arrangements bring a welcome energy to the songs.
The real highlight, though, is the group’s performance of “Great Gig In The Sky,” which lets the vocalists replicate Clare Torry’s wild solo through three different singers. It’s fantastic stuff, and much more impressive than other college projects like, say, analyses of early American authors or the effect of maritime trade routes on the development of European nations.
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