Pink Floyd, A Collection Of Great Dance Songs

This ill-conceived compilation gets its two stars entirely from the amusingly facetious title and another inspired Hipgnosis album cover with the dancers guyed to the ground so tautly their tango is frozen for all eternity. Otherwise, the album itself is nearly completely forgettable. If Pink Floyd made singles (that didn't suck), this kind of shovel instant-The-Nice-Price album might work, but instead it's an exercise in "sounded like a good idea at the time" and "let's get another dollar from the punters" by hacking out, like a rusty machete to an orchid, ragged slices from their grander albums that lack the context and structure essential to their proper appreciation. "Sheep," by itself, is just Roger Waters screaming about a hapless flock of Merinos, not obviously an exhortation to the fearful proletariat to rise up, and why was "Another Brick In The Wall (Part II)" a single when, without the harrowing childhood of young Pink to draw on, the song can only be interpreted as a blunt smear against intellectualism? In fairness, this is not totally true for the other tracks, per se, but they suffer for different reasons: "One of These Days'" snarling brutality is naked without contrasting against the other intriguing tracks on the underappreciated Meddle, and "Money" becomes a victim of an interlabel dispute where Capitol would permit Columbia to use the original recording of "One of These Days" but not "Money," meaning its reincarnation as an underwhelming David Gilmour solo track (see also About Face), though Dick Parry's saxophone is expertly recreated. Only "Wish You Were Here" can truly stand alone, and the edited "Shine On You Crazy Diamond" is much more cohesive, ironically by taking segments off four of the seven sprawling original parts. Worth it to Floyd completists like myself if only for that last, but at least the band recognized the obvious with the title, because on this collection these songs lose their greatness in isolation and you really can't dance to them. (Content: S-bomb, stylized violence.)