Watch as Pink Floyd ‘Echoes’ perfectly soundtrack Stanley Kubrick film ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’
Somethings were just meant to be together and, it turns out, a mashup of Pink Floyd and Stanley Kubrick’s iconic science-fiction epic 2001: A Space Odyssey is one of them. Luckily for you, we’ve got the clip so you needn’t take our word for it.
On reflection, it’s a marriage made in heaven as the mercurial sound of Pink Floyd not only soundtracked the real moon landing in 1969 but also works perfectly alongside the iconic 1968 flick. It’s an otherworldly meeting of genius as Pink Floyd meets Stanley Kubrick.
The film, released in 1968 and widely considered one of the greatest pictures of all time, follows a conspicuous voyage to Jupiter and delves deep into subjects such as human evolution, existentialism, technology and artificial intelligence and the possibility of extraterrestrial life. Pretty much what happens during the course of a Pink Floyd album.
The film synopsis reads: “An imposing black structure provides a connection between the past and the future in this enigmatic adaptation of a short story by revered sci-fi author Arthur C. Clarke. When Dr. Dave Bowman (Keir Dullea) and other astronauts are sent on a mysterious mission, their ship’s computer system, HAL, begins to display increasingly strange behaviour, leading up to a tense showdown between man and machine that results in a mind-bending trek through space and time.”
While its incredible screenplay and pioneering special effects usage remain its lasting legacy, Kubrick has been heavily praised for the film’s innovative use of classical music taken from existing commercial recordings, a way of toe the line between credibility and accessibility. Poignantly, the majority of the music in the film appears either before the first line of dialogue or after the final line with no music being heard during scenes that feature actors talking—a method that relies heavily on the substance of the sound.
Now, however, we’ve unearthed 2001: A Pink Floyd Odyssey, which sees Kubrick’s majestic film combined with prog-rock pioneers Pink Floyd’s epic 23-minute long song ‘Echoes’. It has long been rumoured that Pink Floyd set ‘Echoes’ to the final sequence of Stanley Kubrick’s, ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ when composing the now-iconic song.
Two years before producing their album Meddle, featuring the 23-minute piece ‘Echoes’, Pink Floyd worked on the ‘More’ French film soundtrack, where they worked with film synchronisation equipment,” one filmmaker explains.
“From there the rumours blossomed, with Roger Waters being misquoted as saying the band were originally offered to do the soundtrack (they in fact turned down an offer to feature the ‘Atom Heart Mother’ suite in ‘A Clockwork Orange’). Whether or not the rumours have any basis in fact, there is an undeniable beauty when watching the combination of Kubrick’s intricate stop-motion universe, coupled with the psychedelic wonders of Pink Floyd.”
While the rumour may have been just that, the mashup of Pink Floyd and Kubrick did finally surface online. Combining elements of the Jupiter and Beyond the Infinite of the film, the song syncs up wonderfully. It speaks to both of these creations that they can be married up so easily, considering their contemporary nature, you’d be hard-pressed to find two more intrinsically Zeitgeist piece of art.