Syd Barrett is primarily known amongst fans less as a musician and more of a doomed poet along the lines of Skip Spence or Brian Wilson--someone who talked the talk AND walked the walk. Unfortunately, what's usually lost amid the drug-casualty hoopla is exactly how talented the man was as a singer/songwriter. OPEL is a collection of alternate and rare material that Syd recorded without help from the other members of Pink Floyd (though band members did contribute to his other two official releases). Robert Wyatt and most of Soft Machine back Syd on some of OPEL's tracks, and while this lineup might lack the sympathetic touch of the Gilmour-directed material, OPEL is nonetheless a gem. Of particular interest are the spacier versions of "Octopus" (Here titled (Clowns and Jugglers") and "Wouldn't You Miss Me" (dubbed "Dark Globe" on this collection). A must for Barrett fans and the curious alike.
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