Is There Anybody Out There? The Wall: Live 1980-1981 review by Pink Floyd

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  • Released: Apr 18, 2000
  • Sound: 7
  • Lyrics: 5
  • Overall Impression: 5
  • Reviewer's score: 5.7 Decent
  • Users' score: 8.6 (15 votes)
Pink Floyd: Is There Anybody Out There? The Wall: Live 1980-1981

Sound — 7
Hey! I was planning to review this first! It does not matter. I'm committing the crime of starting this review while hearing earlier live album Pulse, so (a long pause while changing to the right CD) "Is There Anybody Out There?" is an attempt to catch the amazing (theater wise) gigs that the Floyd (Rick Wright being just a session musician here) gave at the earlier eighties at Earl's Court, London. Yeah, the muppets, the teacher, the actual wall deserved a video, unfortunately, for us fans, we have this more-or-less waste of money, released by EMI in conmemoration of the 20th anniversary of the album's release. It was also released in a deluxe edition that I was seeking at some point of the past month, with a book, and blah blah, but thinking that I needed to spend my money in some more useful things made my head turn into the normal packaging. Whatever. Personally, with the exception of "Atom Heart Mother", "The Wall" was the weakest Floyd in the seventies, but that story belongs to the studio album. So, I'm talking about the "little, cute things" this release has. That should be enough to rise the rating, however there are some problems, first, bar "Mother" (but only slightly), "Comfortably Numb", "Goodbye Blue Sky" (again, only slightly, cos the organ at the end reminds me of "Cymbaline"), "Outside the Wall", and all of the above mentioned, it's just exactly The Wall, but with live audience. (OK, I forgot about poor "The Last Few Bricks", a jam played by the band while roadies were finishing The Wall, but it's not that interesting). Also, I loathe "Comfortably Numb": Roger's singing is poor, and David's solo seems just a bunch of 'em compiled from all the shows and thrown together randomly. I was expecting more of it, late live Floyd albums show better soloing and (even without Waters) singing. The rest is the same, done with an incredible "note-by-note" precision.

Lyrics — 5
Meh, the same concept, with the replacement of "Empty Spaces" by "What Shall We Do Now?", and an extra verse on "The Show Must Go On". Want more? I don't think we need to discuss the lyrics in a live album that repeats the same ones of the studio album.

Overall Impression — 5
In a short summary, if you're a very proud fan (poor me), or if you don't own the original album, and in your favourite record shop it's not available, get this. However, if you're just a casual fan, don't waste your money on this (and don't give the money to EMI/Columbia Records). Get "Animals". And if you already own that, purchase it and give it to a friend. Maybe it's not a bad idea after all.

5 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Ha, my review's lacking that things I loved about it (or "cute little things"): - "Young Lust" (and I hated the original! Now, this one has something special I can't tell now, perhaps the guitar and organ solos, and even a cowbell, or suchlike! And it does not sound like cock rock...) -The solo on "Another Brick" Part II -The MC:ATMOS (aka the introductory speech. "Please no fireworks", and I thought they'd got enough on stage) -"What Shall We Do Now?" is interesting. A shame it wasn't included on the studio album because of space. -With the intro, "In the Flesh?" is even more powerful than in the original album. -I hear more the organs and pianos. Poor Rick Wright needed to be highlighted. Otherwise, is a waste of money. OK, not quite, but not a very useful way to spend it...
    I never even bought the studio album. I figured why spend the money when i have this?
    This is almost a better version of The Wall simply because of the added songs, extended solos and instrumental breaks!