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Notes From A Fanatic:

I was three years old when The Dark Side of the Moon came out. Ten years would pass before I'd hear the album's hypnotic, opening heartbeat for the first time. By then, the band behind the music had already broken up. Reagan was in office. The age of hyper-synth pop and hair metal (permed) was upon us and, in my hometown in rural Kansas, the music pickings were slim. We got two radio stations: one with a steady stream of Christian contemporary and country; the other with the latest from Wham, Def Leppard and Poison or Whitesnake.

I can remember very clearly the first time I heard Dark Side. The circumstances weren't particularly special or unique: an older brother of a friend put it on one night when I was visiting. But it grabbed hold of me immediately as something mysterious and beautiful and unlike anything else my young ears were hearing then. It told a story. It was expansive and radiant. It was peaceful yet chaotic. More than anything it sparked my imagination and showed me what music could be. Nothing was the same for me afterward. It sent me into a world where music was much more vast and more complicated than I'd ever thought possible.

These days Pink Floyd is a bit of a joke to some. Friends are always quick to make fun of my love for the band and the Dark Side as the ultimate stoner rock cliche. But the magic and majesty of the album still resonates. I've listened to it hundreds of times and it can still hold me in its gaze.

Robin Hilton
Producer, All Songs Considered

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