Pink Floyd


Song Review by

There's no doubt that 1977's Animals was one of Pink Floyd's most cryptic and intricate albums, even though critics tend to place it at the bottom of their list. The parallel to George Orwell's Animal Farm is pure genius, especially when all the conceptual layers are peeled off and the comparisons of the song's animal characters are matched with that of mankind and human society. From this album came the 17-minute masterpiece "Dogs," where the guitar lines sprouted from a song entitled "You Got to Be Crazy," which Pink Floyd played live in the early '70s during the Dark Side of the Moon tour. Even the lyrics are closely related, but were eventually changed to coincide with the rest of the album's framework. Written by both Gilmour and Waters, the song touches on the ruthlessness of the big businessman who lives to crush those beneath him in order to climb the corporate ladder, only to find out that he will die a sad and lonely man. Musically, the song is made up of numerous effects and sequencer pieces involving barking dogs and echoed guitar chords. With the help of a Vocoder, the barks were processed through a speaker in order to achieve such a haunting quality. The last stanza of "Dogs" involves numerous questions beginning with "Who," reminiscent of the famous poem entitled Howl by Allen Ginsberg. These questions point the finger at the shallowness of the selfish "dog" who eventually reaps the greed and evil that he sows. The songs from Animals were never a friend to radio, but the album stands as one of Pink Floyd's most immersed and engrossing outputs. "Dogs" carries the most weight out of the album's five songs, both lyrically and rhythmically.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Animals 1977 Capitol 17:05
Shine On 1992 Columbia 17:04
Oh by the Way 2007 Capitol 17:04
Discovery 2011 Capitol / EMI / EMI Music Distribution 17:05
Animals: Trance Remix