Pinky And The Floyd

Thursday Feb. 25th, 2010

Kelsey Usher

One of the regions most entertaining shows, Pinky and the Floyd is a collaborative effort of Bozeman musicians to share and pay homage to the music of one of the most well known rock bands in history. They have spent arduous hours rehearsing the styles and techniques of Pink Floyd, whether it’s the socially analytical words of Roger Waters, the legendary guitar solos of David Gilmour, the ever-steady beat of Nick Mason, the psychedelia of Syd Barrett, or the timeless emotional nuances of Rick Wright; Pinky and the Floyd creates a detailed, yet improvisational performance that runs the gamut of Pink Floyd albums.

The momentum that this 9 piece carries through each song and throughout the night is more than enough to keep the crowd bated, hoping to hear their favorite Floyd tune. They respect each note, whether it’s a note-for-note rendition of “Fearless” or a driving jam segment of their own creation. The energy is high, the sound is full, and the band is drenched in talent. The all-star lineup does a great job of making their performance look easy, and it’s obvious that Pink Floyd is deep seeded in each of them.

The band is made up of Bozeman musicians from very different backgrounds, and very different genres, but as a whole the band just makes sense. Joe Kirchner rocks out on the keyboards with his signature Pink bee-hive. Dustin Tucker sings and strums his guitar with an easy smile that makes you think there’s no other place that he would rather be. Luke Flansburg rips through any guitar solo as if he were born playing it, taking much needed breaks to sing. Chris Cundy fattens the sound, like only he can do, with his authentic Hammond B3 organ. Mario Maltese is the ever-steady beat, paying perfect attention to the subtle tempo changes that create that Pink mood. Sean Lehman’s bass lines keep everyone moving forward together. Jake Fleming adds tasty, yet mind-bending sax solos, and the occasional cow-bell! Then there’s the women — Krista Arledge & Jeni Fleming hit so powerfully that every head in the room turns to absorb the energy of their vocals. The two of them split solos from “Dark Side of the Moon,” they harmonize through “What Do You Want From Me,” and they add just the right ooh’s and aah’s for everything else.

This group is brave. Not only for covering one of the greatest rock bands in history, but for the boldness in their execution. To open a show with a no-holds-barred version of “Shine On You Crazy Diamond”, or to take on “Dark Side of the Moon” with nary a pause… To play songs not known as the “big hits”… Their confidence is evident in the way they go from a marching rock groove into a funky jam without missing a beat!

With a large repertoire of songs, Pinky is fully prepared to guide you through an evening that truly embraces the dynamically driven sound of Pink Floyd. Their song list spans nearly the entire Floyd career. They hit on earlier works, playing a handful of tunes from “Meddle” & “The Piper at the Gates of Dawn.” The focus seems to rest on their renditions of “The Dark Side of the Moon” as a whole; “Animals” from start to finish; and many classics from “The Wall,” “Wish You Were Here,” “A Momentary Lapse of Reason,” and “The Division Bell.” As the band grows and morphs, so do the set lists!

A recent show in Missoula was the first time all 9 members played live together, as the women vocalists usually split gigs. But after seeing what it’s like to have that much power in their corner, they will all continue on together as a whole. While at the Top Hat, they gained many new fans, most notably a talented light technician who happens to be a huge Pink Floyd fan! As Pinky played, he worked his magic with a colorful, moody light show. Now he’s coming to Bozeman for Pinky’s next performance at the Zebra (April 2nd)… Music for your ears, lights for your eyes, and all for the love of the Floyd!

If you’ve yet to experience Pinky and the Floyd, your next chance will be at the Zebra Cocktail Lounge in Bozeman, April 2nd. Doors open at 9, and it’s all Floyd, all night! Cover is $7 at the door. It’s the Bozeman debut of the 9 piece arrangement & the new light show! Don’t miss it!