I haven't watched MTV in years. Mostly because it sucks now. But when I was young and in my prime -- oh, let's say age 14, around ‘96 or so -- I was just another young, impressionable member of flannel-clad Alternative Nation. MTV played music videos then. From bands. Times were good, for sure.
In those days, at 50-minutes past the hour, MTV News segments would beam music-related info directly into young minds, usually through the able mouth of anchor Kurt Loder. To me, Loder might as well have been Edward R. Murrow -- trustworthy, slightly older than the MTV's stable of VJ's, and with enough gravitas to announce Kurt Cobain's suicide or Ol' Dirty Bastard's latest name change. Loder spoke. I heard gospel truth.
One Loder report from the mid-'90s I remember focused on a phenomena happening in college dorms across America. Supposedly, simultaneously playing/viewing Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon and The Wizard of Oz revealed, at minimum, strange coincidences or, at most, the face of God. What did it all mean? Whatever.
But I wanted to be like the cool kids. My allowance money that month went to purchases of Dark Side (on CD) and Oz (on VHS). My darkened bedroom played host to the ritual. Thanks to Loder's top notch reporting, I knew to press play on my CD player right after the third roar from the MGM lion. Thanks, Kurt. I was ready to have my mind blown...
Meh. Okay, so, the tornado scene takes place during the maniacal screaming during "The Great Gig in the Sky." Get it? The cash registers that begin "Money" start at the moment Dorothy emerges from her destroyed house and the world is in color for the first time. Kinda cool. The lyric "black..." from "Us and Them" occurs when you see the Wicked Witch of the West for the first time. Scene cuts to Dorothy, "... and blue." So on, so forth. And, if you want, you can try to garner deep meaning from the bleak lyrics to what Dorothy happens to be doing on the screen at any given moment. I wouldn't.
But if you really want to have your life changed, perform the ritual live! "But when am I going to have an opportunity to see Floyd in Humboldt?" Answer: never. Luckily for you though, the world's premiere Pink Floyd tribute band House of Floyd just happens to be playing this Saturday, Nov. 13 at the Arkley Center. They're the next best thing. Maybe even better since House of Floyd band members don't fight incessantly. Deep cuts off Dark Side and The Wall? Check. Eye-popping lasers? Check. "Nuanced musical complexity and powerful visual imagery?" Double check (at least according to their website).
But before you go, make sure to upload some cinema onto your iPhone to accompany the performance. It doesn't have to be Wizard of Oz. Branch out. The movie version of The Wall is cheating, but try Apocalypse Now. Or, maybe The Deer Hunter. Personally, I'll be rockin' Tombstone.