Pink Floyd's Feting of Iconic Album Sparks Controversy

New logo for 50th anniversary of 'Dark Side of the Moon' irks some fans suddenly mad about rainbows
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 21, 2023 10:45 AM CST

Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" turns 50 this year, and just as iconic as the album itself, which spent a jaw-dropping 18-plus years on the Billboard charts, is the cover art designed by British graphic designers Storm Thorgerson and Aubrey Powell. Widely considered one of the most famous album designs of all time, the artwork features a beam of light refracting through a triangular prism, coming out the other side as a rainbow. Thorgerson said he was inspired by a photo he saw in a physics textbook. On Thursday, to mark the upcoming anniversary and promote its commemorative box set, the band uploaded a new logo to its social media accounts, showing a white triangle against a black background, with the number "50" inside it, and a rainbow filling in the zero.

What should've been an exciting time for Floyd fans to join together to celebrate the album, however, turned into an online battle, as some who'd apparently forgotten about the original cover art started accusing the band of suddenly becoming "woke" by using the rainbow, often seen as a symbol of gay pride, to promote LGBTQ rights, per USA Today. "Lose the rainbow, you're making yourself look stupid," one commenter wrote, as seen in a viral screenshot now circulating. "Just another band pandering," noted another. Some even noted they wouldn't be listening to Pink Floyd anymore because of the logo update.

Louder reports that other fans soon came to the rescue to educate these "less enlightened" detractors. "Boycotting Pink Floyd (as if it would matter) because you don't understand prisms and can't remember the original cover is beyond parody," one person wrote. Still others came just to watch the comments fly back and forth. One of the most popular remarks: "Man, some people took 'we don't need no education' too seriously." At any rate, as that fight continues on social media, planetariums across the world plan on playing the album in March, along with "stunning visuals [of] the solar system and beyond," per an announcement from the band. The $300 box set, which will include remastered versions of both the original album and the 1974 live recording, releases on March 24. Watch science at work in creating rainbows in this Pink Floyd promo here. (More Pink Floyd stories.)

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