Pink Floyd have a reputation for being cerebral, with their progressive instincts tied to deeper aspects of art and culture. Yet the band weren’t immune to the charms of football – and one song contains a secret nod to Liverpool FC.
It all harks back to the early 70s. As self-described North London boys, Pink Floyd’s loyalties were more closely tied to Arsenal – Roger Waters in particular was a fan of the Gooners. The all-conquering side that won the League and Cup double in 1972 were the object of his affections, so much so that he took to introducing ‘Echoes’ – from their album ‘Meddle’ – as ‘We Won The Double’.
This devotion was pushed to one side, however, when Pink Floyd came to record fellow ‘Meddle’ album cut ‘Fearless’. Deciding to utilise crowd chants, the band plucked a recording of the Kop Choir – Liverpool’s famed terracing section – out of the ether.
“That idea of using the Kop Choir was interesting because it was absolutely about the sound the Kop Choir make, and I say that because it’s actually the chant of Liverpool,” Mason told Songfacts in 2022. “Roger was an Arsenal supporter – still is, indeed. We were North London guys, so it felt like sacrilege to use the opposition’s chanting, but it’s very powerful.”
The album itself marked another chapter in Pink Floyd’s transition. The loss of founder and leader Syd Barrett spun the group, with albums such as ‘Atom Heart Mother’ and ‘Ummagumma’ finding the band evolving into a fresh state.
“It was very much a transition thing because the song is a much more measured piece than Syd’s songs,” Nick Mason saud. “We’d used sound effects before, but we hadn’t used them in quite that musical way.”
It soon clicked into place – 1973 album ‘The Dark Side Of The Moon’ was an international bestseller, codifying progressive rock for a new decade. Liverpool FC, too, would rise from the ashes – in all, they won four league titles, four charity shields, two European Cups, two UEFA Cups, one FA Cup and one Super Cup… surpassing Roger Waters’ beloved Arsenal.
Check out ‘Fearless’ below.