In 1967, Pink Floyd were synonymous with the London counterculture. And in the In the early days of the band, Syd Barrett was the driving creative force of the band. He wrote the two psychedelic hit singles Arnold Layne and See Emily Play, but then he went downhill psychologically and was no longer wearable - especially at live gigs. After that he recorded "Barrett" and "The Madcap Laughs".
It was precisely on his solo debut, The Madcap Laughs, that his diverse, sometimes revolutionary ideas became apparent, which he would like to realize all at once. But the album is also a document of his philosophy, according to which the first take, even if bumbling, should always be the best and a repetition of the recordings should be rejected in principle, as it would only rob the songs of their spontaneity. No wonder that the people in charge at the label thought about the success of the album, which was only finished in its basic features after weeks in the studio. And so it was that David Gilmour and Roger Waters concentrated Sessions helped to mix and complete the album.
His second was released in 1970 and is much stronger than his debut On the one hand, the album contains a wealth of brilliant song ideas - some of them almost bordering on insanity. On the other hand, Barrett fails due to his lack of ability to realize his ideas musically. Thanks to the renewed support of former Pink Floyd comrades-in-arms, this album could at least be finished - it represents no more and no less than a mirror of Barrett's torn psyche. After that Barrett retired completely from the music scene. And became a living legend.
On "Opel" you will find unreleased songs and alternate takes from the Sessions to the two albums. Whether you think Syd Barrett is a charlartan or a genius, "Opel" is an interesting collection of tracks that are more spontaneous snapshots than perfect music. Like the title track, many of the pieces are acoustic. The Indian saga "Swan Lee" is performed by Barrett with a deep bass voice and realized with distinctive guitar accents and psychedelic organ. "Golden Hair" is already known from the debut album - here it can be heard in a sparsely instrumented vocal version and alternatively as an instrumental piece. "Lanky Part 2" combines mantric drum rituals with guitar and vibraphone accents - and seems as childishly playful as this mentally torn artist himself was. Magical or manic, depending on your point of view.