A remarkable guitar will once again be one of the stars on stage as Brit Floyd promise the ‘world’s greatest Pink Floyd show’ on their latest tour.
They play the Brighton Centre on Saturday, November 22, and Portsmouth Guildhall on Thursday, December 11.
Hanging round Damian Darlington’s neck will be a guitar tribute to The Dark Side of the Moon: “It’s a custom-made Stratocaster made by a French guitar-maker based in London, featuring artwork from Storm Thorgerson’s design for the album cover.
“Storm Thorgerson commissioned a small number of guitars made by this guitar-maker with his artwork design on. I got the last one he made.
“It’s a beautiful piece to play. It has got that iconic Dark Side of the Moon imagery, the prism, the split beam of light.”
It’s appropriate that it’s this particular album that it commemorates: “It’s probably the pinnacle. It is a perfectly-constructed album from beginning to end. I think it was when, collectively, they were at their creative peak. It would be difficult to put another album above The Dark Side of the Moon.
“And you just couldn’t do a Pink Floyd show without representing the album to some extent. It had ‘Money’, which was the first big single in the US and which really brought them to the consciousness of people in America, and then you have got songs like ‘Time’ and ‘The Great Gig in the Sky’.”
It wasn’t, however, the album that attracted Damian to the band: “My first conscious memory of Pink Floyd was ‘Another Brick in the Wall’ being number one at the end of 1979. It was an unlikely Christmas single! I hadn’t started guitar at the time.”
But it wasn’t long before he was hooked on both band and instrument: “I thought it sounded wonderful, and it was great that it was a story narrative running through, and also there were fascinating effects. It was the whole package. Opening up the album, it was just the real thing.”
Even so, it was as much by accident as design that he joined a Pink Floyd tribute band: “I started doing this at the very beginning of 1994 when I joined the Australian Pink Floyd show. They came to the UK, and one of their guitar players decided to go back to Australia.”
Through word of mouth, Damian was recruited and was playing with them a week later.
“Twenty years later, I have spent a lot of time learning the craft of putting on a Pink Floyd show. Three and a half years ago, I decided to strike out on my own with Brit Floyd.”
There are a decent number of Pink Floyd tribute bands around: “And I suppose there is an element of competition, but there is not a serious rivalry or animosity or anything like that.”
Often in countries where they play, Damian will invite along local Pink Floyd tributes to come and see the show.
Different bands take different approaches, as Damian says: “Some people will use it as a vehicle to jam on and do their own thing. Some people even put on wigs and the clothes. But we have always tried to recreate the music of a Pink Floyd show as accurately as we can. We try to create the whole musical experience of one of their shows, the visual aspect, lots of lights and lazors, inflatables, low smoke machines. Pink Floyd created so many of the things that we take for granted when we go to a rock concert.”