Once the album was complete, work began on its cover. Hipgnosis, designer of the band’s previous album covers, offered three ideas, The final concept was, unusually, designed by Waters. At the time he lived near Clapham Common, and regularly drove past Battersea Power Station, which was by then approaching the end of its useful life. A view of the building was chosen for the cover image, and the band commissioned German company Ballon Fabrik (who had previously constructed Zeppelin airships and Australian artist Jeffrey Shaw[ to build a 30 feet (9.1 m) porcine balloon (known as Algie). The balloon was inflated with helium and maneuvered into position on 2 December 1976, with a marksman ready to fire if it escaped. Unfortunately inclement weather delayed work, and the band’s manager Steve O’Rourke neglected to book the marksman for a second day; the balloon broke free of its moorings and disappeared from view. The pig flew over Heathrow, resulting in panic and cancelled flights; pilots also spotted the pig in the air. It eventually landed in Kent and was recovered by a local farmer, who was apparently furious that it had «scared his cows». The balloon was recovered and filming continued for a third day, but as the early photographs of the power station were considered better, the image of the pig was later superimposed onto one of those.
Pink Floyd were an English rock band formed in London in 1964. Gaining an early following as one of the first British psychedelic groups, they were distinguished for their extended compositions, sonic experimentation, philosophical lyrics and elaborate live shows. They became a leading band of the progressive rock genre, cited by some as the greatest progressive rock band of all time.
Pink Floyd were founded in 1964 by Syd Barrett (guitar, lead vocals), Nick Mason (drums), Roger Waters (bass guitar, vocals), Richard Wright (keyboards, vocals) and Bob Klose (guitars); Klose quit in 1965. Under Barrett's leadership, they released two charting singles and the successful debut album The Piper at the Gates of Dawn (1967). Guitarist and vocalist David Gilmour joined in December 1967; Barrett left in April 1968 due to deteriorating mental health. Waters became the primary lyricist and thematic leader, devising the concepts behind the band's peak success with the albums The Dark Side of the Moon (1973), Wish You Were Here (1975), Animals (1977) and The Wall (1979). The musical film based on The Wall, Pink Floyd The Wall (1982), won two BAFTA Awards.
Following personal tensions, Wright left Pink Floyd in 1979, followed by Waters in 1985. Gilmour and Mason continued as Pink Floyd, rejoined later by Wright. The band produced two more albumsA Momentary Lapse of Reason (1987) and The Division Bell (1994)and toured in support of both albums before entering a long period of inactivity. In 2005, all but Barrett reunited for a one-off performance at the global awareness event Live 8. Barrett died in 2006, and Wright in 2008. The last Pink Floyd studio album, The Endless River (2014), was based on unreleased material from the Division Bell recording sessions.
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