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Legendary Pink Dots - The Tower CD (album) cover

THE TOWER

Legendary Pink Dots

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.23 | 12 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Depressive

The Legendary Pink Dots quickly became Legendary due to the prolific nature of their releases. The rush to record albums was very much underway by 1984, with two albums being released that year. While a core few members have remained largely unchanged through the years, many, many others have come and gone. For "The tower", we find keyboard player Patrick Wright joining the band, while April White (also known as April Iliffe and Sybil Strange-Cargo) appears for the last time. Once again, the album was initially released as a limited production run of 2,500 copies.

The tracks on "The tower" are generally a bit shorter and more focused, while still featuring many ducks and dives along the way. The Syd Barrett influences remain very much in evidence, but the electronic sounds of the 80's are also becoming increasingly dominant. The first title track (Tower one) for example has something of a Visage feel at times, although the latter part of the track is less obvious. Lyrically, the songs can be rather heavy, perhaps even gruesome, with persistent war references. The violin backed "Vigil-anti" talks about "spewing out the trash in the name of the Lord" and the closing "Tower five" ends with the depressive message "You wanted shining heroes. You wanted sparkling knights. But they're gone. You chose your grave. Lie there."

Interesting Bowie style influences come to the fore on tracks such as "A lust for power", where the sparse arrangement and strong electronic beat indicate perhaps the beginnings of a search for alternative directions. Occasionally, we are treated to a female vocal in place of the sometimes wearing voice of Ka-Spel. In this case, Lilly Ak offers a fine performance on the touching "Astrid".

By the time of "The tower", the Legendary Pink Dots had pretty much laid out their stall. There would be variances in their style, but overall fans of the band knew pretty much what to expect with each release. The rather eclectic arrangements of the songs and the distinctive vocals will not be to everyone's taste, but the 80's electronics are familiar enough to offer solace to many listeners.

Easy Livin | 3/5 |

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