Daily Bruin- Edward Ka-Spel

Pink Dots aims sound at younger audiences

By Sam Toussi, Daily Bruin Contributor

The Legendary Pink Dots is quite possibly the only band in history to guarantee brain damage to their listeners.

Currently, the Pink Dots is on a grueling tour of the states. The band members have already traveled for a long time in their RV across the country. On Friday, the Pink Dots will appear at the Roxy in an all-ages show.  Actually, it will only seem like it.

“It’s just a humorous reference to what may happen if you listen to our music,” says Edward Ka-Spel, the frontman for the band. “It might turn your head inside out.”

It’s an unusual claim, but the Legendary Pink Dots (affectionately known as the Pink Dots) is not like the usual band. Its music defies a genre. The best way to describe the Pink Dots is to compare its music to a mind trip. The music is like a cross between the sereneness of Enya, storytelling of Pink Floyd and the lyrical mischief of Beck. It’s not surprising that the band lists the German psychedelic band Can as one of their many influences.

Though the Pink Dots have been around for over 18 years, things have been looking up for the British band in the last three years. First of all, the band started a relationship with Soleilmoon, its new label, just three years ago. Ka-Spel practically lights up when discussing the new label.

“It’s a great relationship,” he says. “They let us do what we want to do. They try very hard to get us known, and they get behind each new record.”

But Ka-Spel also feels compelled to retell the horror story they last experienced with a label.

“We were practically beaten to death,” he says. “They still have some of our songs that we can’t release.”

Soleilmoon is also happy with the new relationship. Charles Pound, a representative at the record label says, “They’re just the nicest people to represent. They’re just nice folk. We do whatever we can to accommodate them.”

Another reason the band has been having happy days of late is its consistent line-up. The group’s personnel has been so transient over the years that Ka-Spel and Silverman are the only two band members to appear on every album. The stability that the band has experienced in the last three years has been beneficial in several ways.

“You can’t be in a bus for two months without being friends,” Ka-Spel says. “We have our ups and downs, that’s inevitable, but we always get along.”

Any band’s style will change over 18 years, especially when band members change frequently. Yet despite the coming and going of band members, the Pink Dots have been able to retain its unique sound.

“It’s still Pink Dots, you know,” Ka-Spel says. “You can see the lines pretty clearly. We changed, of course, but I think the way we play has changed because we play a lot better these days.”

Though the sound has remained the same, The Legendary Pink Dots realizes a need to reach a younger audience – and for that reason, the band is excited to play the all ages show at the Roxy this Friday.

“How can any band survive if new people don’t keep discovering them?” Ka-Spel asks. “What we’re doing is relevant to these times. It’s utterly modern.”

Pound also sees the future in a younger audience and finds that that is one of the best things about the band.

“We don’t shape them in that respect or in any respect, “Pound says. “We’re totally aware that they have a younger following. It’s one huge reason why they’re so successful. They have a following in the 16-21 age group.”

© 1998 ASUCLA Communications Board


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