In 1977, Pink Floyd released its tenth studio album, Animals. To mark the record’s 40th anniversary this year, I wanted to take a peek inside the timeless album that even after so long, still rings very true today with the current political climate.
Written at the band's studio Britannia Row in London, Pink Floyd's Animals album had only five tracks and ran for 40 minutes. It is the start of Roger Waters taking more of the reigns during this period of the band. One of my favorites, this literal album itself makes subtle human behavior comparisons to animals and is very reminiscent of George Orwell's literary masterpiece Animal Farm.
The first tune "Pigs on the Wing, Part 1" is an intro setting the tone of the album offering unvarnished lyrics like “If you didn’t care what happened to me/ And I didn’t care for you/ We would zig-zag our way through the boredom and the pain/ Occasionally glancing through the rain/ Wondering which of the buggars to blame/ And watching for pigs on the wing.” Next, "Dogs" is a lengthy song that speaks about the band's perspective of capitalism. During "Dogs" with Waters & David Gilmore handling the lyrics, it's Gilmore's talent on guitar that actually takes this song to places only he can. On side two, "Pigs (Three Different Ones)" was written by Waters where he portrays what he describes as different types of pigs who have influence over the people from the politicians, authority figures and government types. The next song "Sheep" is referring to the followers that rarely do anything to change their circumstances. Finally, after all of the lengthy jams, the second part of "Pigs on the Wing" merely served as a short outro of the album.
While Animals was an album widely appreciated by uber Pink Floyd fans, it did not see much radio play on the rock stations. However, it is interesting to note that even with such political underlyings, Animals still went to #2 on the UK Albums Chart and #3 on the US Billboard 200 chart as well as reaching 4x Platinum.