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Music Review: Edward Ka-Spel – Dream Logik Part Two

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As with all Beta-lactam Ring Records releases, the packaging of Edward Ka-Spel’s Dream Logik Part Two is exquisite. For those wondering if the former leader of The Legendary Pink Dots could sustain the magic of Dream Logik Part One, let me reassure you.  

Edward Ka-Spel has indeed. In fact, I much prefer the atmospherics and textures he uses here to those employed on Part One.

As the title implies, this song cycle is concerned with the random, at times soothing, at times frightening landscapes of a person’s dream world. The disc opens with “As A Bird” and closes with the brief “As A Bird (Part 2), suggesting a theme of flight.

True to the convoluted logic of dreams though, one of the most notable tracks is “The Modest Ambitions Of Cedric The Centipede,” which has absolutely nothing to do with the notion of flight. In fact, it sounds like our friend Cedric has been listening to a lot of Kraftwerk in his little insect hovel.

As we get deeper into the tune though, some very dark atmospherics replace the goofy synth farts and bleeps that came before. In fact, the darkness may explain the real reason this song was included here. Centipedes are a nocturnal species, and that is the key theme of Dream Logik.

“Under The Junction” suggests one of Ka-Spel’s heroes, the late Syd Barrett. For Ka-Spel, this song is as whimsical as his particularly British style of psychedelia gets.

The most disturbing piece on the record is “Going My Way?” The electronics are unapologetically abstract, and really do reflect a world gone mad. The treatments of Edward Ka-Spel’s voice are spooky enough, but listening to the actual words he is intoning becomes downright uncomfortable.

Fortunately, things lighten up a bit on the final two tracks, which actually comprise four songs. “New Fool’s Moon”/ “The Closet” suggest a less threatening dream state than “Going My Way?” did, yet is really no picnic either. His use of synthesizers is inventive as ever, and I really like the melancholic ending of “The Closet.”

Finally we come to “My Wandering Star”/ “As A Bird (Part 2)”, which somehow manages to reconcile the various paths undertaken over the previous six songs. Dream Logik Part Two ends with the short and bucolic “As A Bird (Part 2)," depositing the listener back at the point the record began.

Like a good dream, Edward Ka-Spel’s latest offering leaves one wondering what exactly just occurred, and wanting desperately to remember every detail of the experience. Unlike a dream, we can just replay Ka-Spel’s vision over and over to get it right.

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About Greg Barbrick

  • http://www.massivemusicamerica.com massive music

    Actually, the Legendary Pink Dots are still going strong, so Edward Ka-Spel is not the “former” leader of the band.

  • skulb

    Indeed. And they seem to have a certain degree of success even, and well deserved. I remember the days when a Dots concert included 5 people on stage, 5 on the floor and 5 at the bar shushing the loud guys:)