For the second time in as many years, Brit Floyd will be making a tour stop to Columbus' LC Pavilion. The band advertises themselves as the "The World's Greatest Pink Floyd Show" and on March 7 they will be putting on the show of a lifetime. Dubbed the PULSE World Tour 2013 they will be embarking on quite a challenging and yet rewarding task. They will be playing one full album side from the following classic Floyd albums: Dark Side of the Moon; Wish You Were Here; Animals,The Wall; and The Division Bell.
In anticipation of the Columbus gig I was able to reach the band's bass player Ian Cattell to discuss a little bit about the upcoming tour and his career in music. He was gracious enough to answer my questions and seems genuinely excited about his next visit to Ohio's capital city.
Me: Talk to me about how you got into playing music?
Ian: I come from a very musical family. My mother and my sister play piano, and my brother played trumpet. My parents used to host an early music group with recorders, gambas, and harpsichord at our house on a regular basis.
Me: As a bass player, I would assume that Roger Waters had to be one of your influences in playing rock music. Any other bass players that have been particularly influential to you?
Ian: I'm a big fan of Tony Levin (King Crimson), John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin), John Entwhistle (The Who), and many others.
Me: How did Brit Floyd come about?
Ian: Nearly everyone from Brit Floyd was in the Australian Pink Floyd Show including our musical director Damian Darlington for 17 years and myself for 6 years. The Australian members of the band decided to make a change in management. Damian, myself, and 8 other members decided to form a new project.
Me: Per your band’s website, you guys are going to be embarking on the PULSE World Tour here shortly, that includes a stop in Columbus. It is being advertised as playing one full album side of 5 huge albums, Dark Side of the Moon; The Wall; Wish You Were Here; Animals; and The Division Bell. How did that idea come about?
Ian: We like the idea of tying the set in with sitting down with a pile of vinyl records and just listening to the music. Who has the time for that anymore?
Me: How difficult was it to decide which sides of those albums to play?
Ian: It's quite difficult. We are still working on it. You just don't want to leave certain songs or sides out. If we had the stamina we'd put on a 4 hour show, but that's just not possible. Right now were looking at having a few sides in reserve to rotate in and out of the show. You never know what you're going to get.
Me: Which of those five albums is your personal favorite?
Me: Is that you favorite Floyd album overall as well?
Ian: I have to go with Animals again. What can I say; it's great to listen to and to perform.
Me: Is there a Floyd song that you find more challenging to play than others?
Ian: In the context of me singing and playing bass, there are times when the vocal part is counter to the rhythm of the bass. This really comes into play with certain Gilmour vocals I perform on a given night. While the bass parts may not be challenging on their own, singing and playing Sorrow and Learning to Fly come to mind.
Me: Three hours is a pretty full set. Besides the cuts from those five classic albums, will there be anything pre Dark Side, or Final Cut or Momentary Lapse to sneak into the set list?
Ian: In addition to the five album sides, there will be a “mix tape”, or “Mp3 playlist” section that will include songs that were missed in the sides section that we want to include. We are still hashing that out as we speak.
Me: Pink Floyd shows were a work of art that depended just as heavily on the music as it did the imagery. You guys have been able to successfully replicate those sights and sounds. Are there any concerts that you have attended, as a fan, that have made you just say, “Wow”?
Ian: One obvious one comes to mind. I was lucky enough to be able to see Roger's tour of The Wall twice so far. The wall itself and the animation projected on it was stunning. Peter Gabriel's Back To Front tour has a light show that starts slow by design, but will knock your socks off by the end.
Me: What is your favorite part about performing such great music live?
Ian: I love the reaction from the crowd. I love it when you see someone in the audience with a smile that takes over their whole face and you know they don't even know they're doing it.
Me: Is there anything you’d like to tell the Columbus fans that are anxiously awaiting your March 7th visit?
Ian: We had an amazing time at the LC Pavilion last year. One of my favorite photos of the tour is a wide shot of the stage and audience at the LC. We’re looking forward to a great show, and maybe a drink or two at the A&R afterwards.
That concluded my questioning for Ian and I must say I am even more excited for this show than I was before.There really aren't many bands that can compete with the quality and quantity of music that the mighty Pink Floyd put out during their career. That there are bands out there keeping the music alive and bringing it to Columbus like Brit Floyd and Cleveland's Wish You Were Here is a testament to the timeless appeal of these songs. Make sure that you are there Thursday March 7 at The LC to see Brit Floyd and the PULSE tour. Tickets are available for $35 general admission standing, and can be purchased at the box office or at Ticketmaster outlets. The show is being brought to you by Ohio's Best Rock QFM 96.