To celebrate 50 years since the August 5, 1967 release of Pink Floyd’s debut The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, Kyle Shutt, the guitarist from Austin, TX’s foremost stoner/doom-mongers The Sword, is releasing a complete cover of that seminal psych/prog band’s most popular album, The Dark Side of the Moon—by far a more metal-friendly album to rework than Piper.
The idea came to me after getting baked and wanting to hear a heavy version of “Time.” I thought, why not just cover the whole album? After sitting down and working out some loose concepts, the arrangement for “Money” materialized and I realized that I could totally do this if I assembled the right band. It felt a little strange messing with someone’s legacy, but I’m treating it as a celebration of one of the greatest bands to ever rock, a party that everyone is invited to.
This is far from a new move—baby’s-first-prog-metal band Dream Theater has covered the entire album live, and a CD and DVD were released in the mid ‘oughts. Here’s a YouTube link to a live performance that’s probably my favorite Dream Theater thing I’ve heard. Make of that nugget of praise what you will.
The absolute all time high water marks for Floyd covers—metal or otherwise, though these happen to be metal—are a pair by the incredible Quebec band Voivod. First was the definitive Syd Barrett-era song “Astronomy Domine,” from 1989’s Nothingface, which track earned enough spins on my college radio show at the time that I probably grooved the poor LP. A few years later, their 1993 album The Outer Limits included a cover of “Nile Song,” a pretty heavy blast of proto-metal in its original form. This is how you cover Floyd:
It’s a tie for worst metal Floyd cover, between Korn and Kittie. Look up either one if you want to hate life.
The independently released Kyle Shutt album will be titled Doom Side of the Moon and will feature contributions from musicians that include The Sword’s rhythm section, bassist Bryan Richie and drummer Santiago Vela III. To celebrate the release, Shutt will perform the record live on August 5th at the storied Austin venue Emo’s, presumably in LP sequence. No word yet on a tour. Because it’s a Floyd show, there’ll be a laser show by The Mustachio Light Show, known for providing visuals for head-trip festivals like Levitation (p/k/a Austin Psych Fest), Desert Daze, and NRMAL. To give a taste of what’s to come, a video in the style of the planned multimedia show was made for Shutt’s cover of “Money.” Both song and video are pretty damn cool—hit the fullscreen button and watch it with a bud.