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Did you know that there are just two songs with Nick Mason credited as the only author? They are The Grand Vizier’s Garden Party and Speak To Me, which was only credited to him because of the royalties. Did you know that in the Pink Floyd Live At Pompeii video during the song One of These Days a drumstick slips out of Nick Mason’s hand? Nick continues drumming with just one drumstick furiously while fumbling for the other with the other hand. Did you know that The Wall could have been a triple album? The material that didn’t make it to the Wall album later became part of Final Cut.
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Piper At The Gates OF Dawn

Astronomy Domine

The first voice on the album, reciting the names of celestial bodies through a megaphone, belongs to Peter Jenner, one of the managers of the band. The opening morse code message that has no actual meaning is soon replaced by organ, echo guitars and quite agressive drums, the sort of drums the listeners did not expect even in 1967. Could the line "stars can frighten" be an early hint of Barrett's paranoia?

Lucifer Sam

A song that is partly about Syd's siamese cat and partly about his girlfriend Jenny (Jennifer Gentle). The left side/right side Syd mentions refer to the difference between the logical and creative functions of the two hemispheres of the human brain. Thanks to the typical nimble guitar riff, the song sounds fresh even today and has been covered by various bands.

Matilda Mother

In this song, Syd presents himself as a scared child that does not want his mom to switch the light off after a bedtime story and he tells us so in one of his most eloquent and poetic pieces of lyrics. When Syd left the band, he returned to his mother and was very close to her (or she was to him?) until her death in 1991. In this song, we can hear an organ riff played by Rick Wright, a riff that later became known as "Rick's Turkish Delight," because it resembled a theme from a then popular chocolate box ad.


The lyrics of this song perfectly grasps the age in which the album was recorded. They are lyrical, with many fairy tale themes and a gentle, almost childish atmosphere.

Pow R. Toc H.

Toc H. is a charity organisation, the name of which was derived from the army abbreviation for Talbot House, a WWI soldiers' club that was located right behind the front, where ranks did not matter. The Toc H. has the goal of strenghtening friendship between young people of different social backgrounds. The reason the name was used as well as the meaning of the other half of it are unknown.
The song is also known as Pink Jungle - part The Journey (references to The Man and The Journey, see The Massed Gadgets of Auximines.)

Take Up Thy Stethoscope And Walk

As a matter of fact, it is only logical that the only member of the band apart from Syd to have his own song on the album was Waters, although he described the song as very bad. There is not much vocal and Waters shares it with Barrett.
With a little imagination we could say the song suggests the way Roger would write his later songs.

Interstellar Overdrive

Pink Floyd recorded the song even before it was recorded for this album (for example, we can hear it on Tonite Let's All Make Love In London) and it is perhaps the most true (although much more cultivated) sample of the style Pink Floyd played in the London UFO and Marquee clubs.
The main theme originated when Peter Jenner tried to sing My Little Red Book to Syd, accompanied by guitar (and it is a pity that the riff was cut out of the TV comedy Steptone and Son).
The wild "stereo spree" at the end is the work of Norman Smith, who was used to working with stars such as The Beatles.
Also known as The Labyrinth Of Auximines from The Journey, although the song was performed individually well into 1970.

The Gnome

This sensible fairytale story of Barrett's resembles a nursery rhyme. It is accompanied by Rick Wright's wood drum and xylophone (although these are not typical rock instruments, they fit the song quite perfectly).

Chapter 24

Both the name and the lyrics of this song were taken from a 5000 years old Chinese divination book called I Ching. The fortune telling system relies on coincidence (the position of randomly thrown coins) rather than the configuration of the stars.
The lyrics, recited over a simple keyboard part with a slight foretaste of dulcimer instruments, are taken from one of the chapters of the book, which tells us about a new start of things.


Another melodic and almost fairy tale song, originally featuring wood drums and claves, which work just as well as a drum set to emphasize the rhythm, but don't make the song sound too hard.


Although this song seems to be just another Barrett's musical fairy tale, its meaning is much deeper and more serious. To start with, there is (unlike in some other songs such as Lucifer Sam) a quite cultivated objection against the behaviour of Barrett's then girlfriend. Then there is also the interlude, a crazy sample of a "room full of tones," which was created the same way as the later used quadrophonic PA system effect, a tangle of clockwork sounds and eventually also quite scary dittying voices.


English version by:
Vít Benešovský, Jan "Johnny" Petrus

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