Syd Barrett/Pink Floyd An Introduction to Syd Barrett

Like the majority of musicians with a cult following, much of Syd Barrett's mystique comes from the combination of limited discography and a tragic back-story. His time with Pink Floyd was markedly different from when Dave Gilmour took over the reins, with a very English pop-psyche sound that continued with his two solo albums: The Madcap Laughs and Barrett. But after that, he slowly disappeared from view and never released anything else for reasons never fully explained. And so his air of mystery grew, enough for his music to be repackaged again and again. That said, An Introduction to Syd Barrett does an excellent job of gathering his best work, with six early Pink Floyd songs and another dozen solo tracks. There's nothing new here ― rarest track "Bob Dylan Blues" was already released on an earlier compilation a decade ago ― but some of the songs have been remixed by Gilmour, who also overdubbed some new bass onto one song. However, this is all about Syd's tracks, which are mostly charming and engaging, but could also be unnerving and disturbingly raw. An Introduction to Syd Barrett does everything this kind of compilation should and will likely draw many more people into Barrett's unique musical world. (Capitol)