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Pink Floyd's Dark Side: Inside the tour that road-tested rock's greatest album

Classic Rock Magazine issue 303 cover
(Image credit: Future)

Fifty years ago (almost to the day as we were going to press on this issue), Pink Floyd entered the studio to start recording their groundbreaking The Dark Side Of The Moon album. These days it’s an omni-present part of our lives, and – kinda amazingly, when you stop to think about its innovative musical conceits and bleak lyrical content– is the fourth best-selling album of all time. I mean, how did that happen?! 

It was a work of art that began its life on tour, with songs that started out as on-the-road sketches and morphed into something incredible. This month we take a deep dive into the tour and subsequent album that defined Pink Floyd and cemented their legacy. 

Elsewhere in this issue we talk to Pete Townshend about the turbulent genesis of The Who’s Who’s Next album; discuss the fractious goings-on in the Journey organisation with Neal Schon and Jonathan Cain (and get the lowdown on their brand new album); chat with Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi about their new massive four-album endeavour; go record shopping in Helsinki with the force of nature also known as Michael Monroe… and so much more!

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Features

Pink Floyd
In early 1972, Pink Floyd were mulling over ideas for their next record, with no real direction in mind. A year later they emerged from Abbey Road with an album that would overshadow everything they had done before. This is the story of their journey to The Dark Side Of The Moon.

Journey
Given the years of mud slinging, threats, power grabs, law suits and general animosity, it looked like Journey’s 2011 album Eclipse might have been their last. But while new album Freedom shows that storms don’t last for ever, with this band another one’s never far away.

Tedeschi Trucks Band
Blues and soul collective the Tedeschi Trucks Band have woven the isolation of the pandemic and a classic Arabic tale about star-crossed lovers into a four-album project that’s both epic and intimate.

Kris Barras
"Hello Wembley!" It used to be something Kris Barras would shout as a joke at a dead gig. But a hell of a lot of hard work has led to him now doing it for real.

Porcupine Tree
In the 1990s and 2000s, Porcupine Tree were rock’s square peg, playing beautifully twisted music to a modest but devout audience. After more than a decade away they’re back with a new album. Has their time finally come?

The Who
In 1971, Pete Townshend’s obsession with a science-fiction rock opera sent him down the path of self-destruction. But while that project ended up being abandoned, he delivered a masterpiece. This is the story of The Who’s Who’s Next.

Classic Rock Magazine issue 303 cover

(Image credit: Future)

Regulars

The Dirt
Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler in rehab, causing the band’s Las Vegas residency to be postponed… Spinal Tap sequel confirmed to be on the way… Judas Priest recording a new studio album… Welcome back Coheed And Cambria, Whiskey Myers and Riot Act. Say hello to Torus and Classless Act.

The Stories Behind The Songs: Wig Wam
Born out of an identity crisis, and resurrected by a US TV channel’s new superhero show, the glammy Norwegians’ 2010 anthem Do Ya Wanna Taste It was a cautionary tale of flying too close to the sun.

Q&A: Chris Jericho
The Fozzy frontman on not taking no for an answer, mixing music and wrestling and liking British comedy.

6 Things You Need To Know About... Dorothy
The leader of the band that bears her name, Dorothy Martin is reaping the rewards from having a determined spirit.

The £50 Record Store Challenge: Michael Monroe
The door of Helsinki's Levykauppa Keltainen Jäänsärkijä record shop opens to a crisp Helsinki spring and Michael Monroe, Classic Rock's £50 in hand and our writer watching every move.

Reviews
New albums from ZZ Top, Journey, Prince & The Revolution, Black Stone Cherry, Supersonic Blues Machine, Snowy White, Alexisonfire, Orianthi, Jack White, Brian Jonestown Massacre, Killswitch Engage…Reissues from Rolling Stones, UFO, Christine McVie, Beach Boys, Neurotic Outsiders, Gov’t Mule, Volbeat… DVDs, films and books on Iron Maiden, Phil Lynott/Thin Lizzy, Radiohead, Barney Bubbles, Dinosaur Jr, Adam And The Ants… Live reviews of Queen + Adam Lambert, Alice Cooper, The Cult, Blondie, Jeff Beck, Crown Lands, Spiritualized…

Buyer's Guide: The Moody Blues
Originally just another R&B band, through innovation they would soon create one of the sounds of the late 60s/early 70s.

Back To Live
With gigs back on the agenda, we preview tours by Rival Sons, Stanley Clarke and Gogol Bordello. Plus gig listings – find out who’s playing where and when.

The SoundTrack Of My Life: Brian Fallon
The Gaslight Anthem’s Brian Fallon picks his records, artists and gigs of lasting significance.

Alt

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Classic Rock is the online home of the world's best rock'n'roll magazine. We bring you breaking news, exclusive interviews and behind-the-scenes features, as well as unrivalled access to the biggest names in rock music; from Led Zeppelin to Deep Purple, Guns N’ Roses to the Rolling Stones, AC/DC to the Sex Pistols, and everything in between. Our expert writers bring you the very best on established and emerging bands plus everything you need to know about the mightiest new music releases.