The Legendary Pink Dots
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|The Legendary Pink Dots|
Beta-lactam Ring Records
Car Crash International
Flesh Eating Ants Records
The Tear Garden
|Past members||Ryan Moore
Edwin von Trippenhof
Julia Niblock Waller
Martijn de Kleer
Niels van Hoorn
The Legendary Pink Dots (LPD) are an Anglo-Dutch experimental rock band formed in London in August 1980. In 1984 the band transplanted itself to Amsterdam. The core members of the group are vocalist/songwriter/keyboardist Edward Ka-Spel and keyboardist Phil Knight. As of 2012, the group is composed of Edward Ka-Spel (vocals, keyboards, songwriter), Phil Knight (a.k.a. The Silverman) (keyboards, electronics), Erik Drost (guitars) and Raymond Steeg (live sound engineer).
Although far outside the mainstream (in terms of their music and career path), LPD have released more than 40 albums, have a devoted worldwide following, and tour frequently.
The band was originally called "One Day..."  but subsequently changed the name to The Legendary Pink Dots. The story behind the name is a source of speculation because Edward has given multiple explanations behind its origins. The most plausible and common explanation traces back to the mysterious pink dots on certain keys of the band's main recording studio piano named "Osbert"; the dots that can be found at either end of the keys do not make any particular chord or scale pattern and the reason for them remains unknown to this day. The piano itself is still owned by one of the founding band members, April White, and can be found at her home recording studio in Chatteris, Cambridgeshire.
Their music touches on elements of neo-psychedelia, ambient music, electronic music, tape music, industrial, psych folk, synth-pop, post-punk, progressive, jazz, noise, pop, and goth rock, with a distinctly experimental/avant-garde bent; their sound has evolved over time and remains distinctive, making it difficult to place the group into a concise style or genre. The group's overall sound combined with Ka-Spel's distinct lyrics and singing have earned comparisons to Pink Floyd and Syd Barrett; the group also has links to the sounds of krautrock bands such as Can, Faust, Brainticket, Magma or Neu! (whose "Super" they covered on the 1999 tribute album "A Homage to NEU!"), as well, to some post-industrial`pioneers as Nurse With Wound and the neo-folk of Current 93. Edward Ka-Spel has said their musical influences range from the likes of Abba to Iannis Xenakis.
The Pink Dots frequently collaborated with Skinny Puppy's cEvin Key, forming a side project named The Tear Garden. Key also played drums on several tracks of the 1994 LPD album 9 Lives to Wonder. Others groups related to present and past Pink Dots members are Strange Attractor, Mimir and Minizza.
Ryan Moore, who provided drums on studio and live performances for the Legendary Pink Dots, departed to work on his own musical outlet, the Twilight Circus Dub Sound System. He has found notable success with Twilight Circus in the Reggae/Dub genre. He even wrote and produced new albums for grammy-award winning singer Michael Rose of Black Uhuru, and has worked with other notable Reggae figures such as Sly Dunbar, half of one of the most influential partnerships in reggae music, Sly & Robbie.
The Pink Dots have influenced a wide range of bands, such as The Dresden Dolls, the Death Party, MGMT, Electric Caves, Orbit Service, Skinny Puppy, Christus and the Cosmonaughts, Snow in Texas, The Circus of the Scars, Halbes Vakuum, Chanting Sheep, Golden Death Music, Un Festín Sagital, One for Jude, Hide n' Seek. and many others.
In a private interview in 1987, the band stated that they had been influenced strongly by The Residents and Tuxedomoon.
There are a number of concepts and words that recur in Pink Dots lyrics, many of which also appear in Edward Ka-Spel's solo works. Some of these include:
- Lisa (song examples: "Lisa's Christening", "Lisa's Party", "Lisa's Funeral", "Lisa Goes Surfing", "Lisa's Separation")
- Has been identified by Edward Ka-Spel as his "alter-ego trying to get a little attention. Tried to spare the world by killing her off a few times but she always bounces back."
- Tower (six songs on the album The Tower, "Tower 8" on Island of Jewels)
- Hotel (song examples: "Hotel Blanc", "Hotel Noir", "Hotel X", "Hotel Z")
- Our Lady (song examples: "Our Lady In Chambers", "Our Lady In Darkness", "Our Lady In Kharki", "Our Lady In Cervetori")
- Apocalypse (song examples: "Apocalypse Then", "Apocalypse Soon")
- King (song examples: "Death of the king", "The grain kings", "All the king's men")
- Gladiator (song examples: "Neon Gladiators")
- China Doll (song examples: "Aa∆zhyd China Doll", "Dance Of The China Dolls")
- 834 "The new number of the Beast" (song examples: "834", "Revolution 834") and other numbers: "It always changes. Sometimes it's 15, sometimes it's 834."
- Tarot divination
- Premonition: Songs with the title "Premonition" have been released by the Pink Dots throughout their career, with the first song appearing as early as 1982. They can be found on the following releases:
- Premonition 1: Premonition
- Premonition 2: Premonition
- Premonition 3: Apparition
- Premonition 4: Brighter Now
- Premonition 5: Prayer for Aradia
- Premonition 7: Chemical Playschool 8+9
- Premonition 8: Prayer for Aradia
- Premonition 9: Prayer for Aradia
- Premonition 10: Chemical Playschool 3 & 4
- Premonition 11: Premonition 11 / Poesa E Suono
- Premonition 12: Stained Glass, Soma Fountains (originally appeared on a compilation called "QED")
- Premonition 13: The Legendary Pink Box
- Premonition 15: Crushed Mementos
- Premonition 16: Curious Guy
- Premonitoin 18: Traumstadt 4
- Premonition 19: Chemical Playschool 10
- Premonition 25: A Perfect Mystery (Vinyl edition)
- Premonition 26: Synesthesia
- Premonition 28: Synesthesia
- Premonition 33: Poppy Variations (Vinyl edition)
- Premonition 34: The Creature That Tasted Sound
- Premonition 39: Chemical Playschool 15
- Premonition 40: Taos Hum
- Edward Ka-Spel. "The Legendary Pink Dots - A 20 Year History (2000)". Retrieved 6 October 2012.
- "About The Legendary Pink Dots".
- "Interview with Edward Ka-Spel (Option Magazine)". LPD Official Site. Retrieved 9 October 2012.
- Mason, Stewart: "Your Children Placate You from Premature Graves", Allmusic.com review. Retrieved February 3, 2007.
- Mason, James: "A Perfect Mystery", Allmusic.com review. Retrieved February 3, 2007.
- "Amanda Palmer: "Thank God my best friend's a therapist"". The Guardian.
- "MMII: Halbes Vakuum at the Internet Archive". archive.org. Retrieved 9 October 2012.
- Interview with Edward Ka-Spel , November 2007
- "The Legendary Pink Dots - History". The Legendary Pink Dots at Brainwashed.com. Retrieved 2 October 2012.
- "Interview with the Legendary Pink Dots by Christus". Retrieved 8 October 2012.