The Legendary Pink Dots

From Here You'll Watch the World Go By

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With the stable, 1990s lineup of the group now well-seasoned indeed, the Legendary Pink Dots kept on keeping on with From Here You'll Watch the World Go By, one of the band's most wide-ranging and consistently successful efforts. Generally speaking, the focus on the album is on group performances with odd interjections as opposed to full-on cut-up efforts, with Ka-Spel's now sui generis lyrical approach and delivery leading the weird and wild way as always. There's almost a glam feel at many points, whether it's the combination of descending chords at some points or the easy chug of "Remember Me This Way," the album's lead single. When the group tries for its own variants on techno and electronic dance as filtered through other perceptions, the results can be most intriguing, as the dark bubbling up of "1001 Commandments" (with a great husked Ka-Spel vocal and excellent percussion work from Ryan Moore) demonstrates. Spoken word turns on "A Velvet Resurrection" over tranced-out, space rock zone, and the slow-building feel of dread and collapse on "This One-Eyed Man Is King" shows that some things will forever remain LPD at its most intense. More than once, though, the music is as mainstream as the band might ever get -- consider the lovely opening track "Clockwise," which could have easily been someone's English folk rock underground hit in 1970. Ka-Spel's singing is lovely, wistful yet still slightly damaged, while the arrangement -- polite, attractive, just haunting enough and benefiting from the Silver Man's piano -- is a sweet dream, ending on an quietly electric flow. Other acoustic efforts, in keeping with the just-beyond-the-fields-we-know efforts like "I Love You in Your Tragic Beauty," include "Friend" and the concluding "This Hollowed Ground."

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