Sync or Swim: The Great Gravity in the Sky

This didn’t start with Gravity but rather with Labyrinth. I checked my stats the other morning and two search terms asked what album synced with Labyrinth. I had no clue but I Googled the question and an article from the New Yorker came up about how DSotM synced with the first part of Gravity (which you can read here). The only reason I tried it was because a movie sync other than Dark Side of the Rainbow was discussed in a high-profile news source.

Unfortunately the article does not pinpoint the exact starting point, nor are the timecodes accurate. It turns out that you have to play the album for one minute and twelve seconds, just before the scream. What I recommend is pausing the album at 1:12 and resume play when “Life in space is impossible” appears on screen. The album will play once.

Speak to Me/Breathe

  • The scream from “Speak to Me” matches the intense soundtrack from the movie as the title is revealed
  • “Breathe” begins when we see the Earth
  • “Breathe in the air”, or at least as much as possible before the O2 levels run out
  • “Look around” as we take in the thirteen minute tracking shot
  • The impending attack of debris signals “an early grave”

On the Run

  • Foreshadowing that Kowalski and Stone have to “run” from the debris

Time

  • Much of the movie deals with time in order to survive, from timers to Kowalski telling Stone that they have no time when they hear “Mission abort”
  • Kowalski tells the Mardi Gras story to “waste the hours in an off-hand way”
  • Houston is the one that “shows them the way” when they abort the mission
  • The debris “races around to come up behind them again”
  • “The sun is the same in a relative way” as it is the center of our solar system
  • “Shorter of breath, one day closer to death” accurately describes their situation
  • Ryan Stone is “hanging on in quiet desparation” as she is trapped to the support
  • The reprise of “Breathe” begins when the second shot of the film begins

The Great Gig in the Sky

  • “I’m not afraid of dying” is Stone’s conclusion later in the film after she talks to Aningaaq
  • Stone and Kowalski dance to the final part of the song

Money

  • Earlier in the film, Stone commented that she was happy that her funding wasn’t cut
  • The debris clocked in at 50,000 mph; “Money” is the fifth song on the album, depending on whether or not “Speak to Me” and “Breathe” are listed as separate tracks
  • There were five people in space during the mission; again, this is the fifth song on the album
  • The damage that occurred in space, not to mention the lives lost and the insurance policies will cost a lot of money
  • Stone and Kowalski will need “a Lear jet” of some kind in order to get back home

Us and Them

  • Stone and Kowalski drift in time with the slower tempo in the song
  • When Stone talks about how her daughter died, she says that it was the stupidest thing. It happens to everyone; “after all, we’re only ordinary men”
  • “Black and blue” are two of the main colors prominently featured in the film
  • “Up and down” are not easy to define in a place with zero gravity
  • The bridge contains some powerful moments as Stone grabs on to Kowalski by the tether for dear life
  • “With, without” describes how Stone was tethered to Kowalski; with the tether, then without
  • Kowalski is “the old man” who “died

Any Color You Like

  • The spinning cinematography is disorienting at times, fitting the psychedelic mood for the song

Brain Damage

  • The lunatic is Stone, as we later see in the film
  • “Your head explodes” is a bad thing to have happen in space, especially without a helmet
  • Kowalski is “someone in my head, but it’s not me” when he makes a surprise appearance in the Russian pod
  • “You shout and no one seems to hear”, an allusion to the Alien tagline
  • The instrumental at the end fits with the embryonic symbolism

Eclipse

  • Stone, in one way or another, comes to terms with each thing mentioned in the song
  • The heartbeat heard at the end of the album comes from one person: Stone’s
  • The album ends in silence as Stone looks out and sees the Earth, silent and lonely

Like The Canterlot Wall and The Dark Side of the Arcade, there was no way for these albums to work with material made decades later. I had speculated that “Echoes” described the movie as a whole, but I wasn’t serious. I know that I’ve discussed several DSotM syncs and I’m growing tired of each new one. Even though I listed “connections”, some are flimsy at best. It’s OK but it’s a stretch.

Sync grade: C+

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