A Perfect Mystery

THE LEGENDARY PINK DOTS

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Cover ImageRelease date and tracklist
2000

US CD Caciocavallo CAD11

  1. Lent – [MP3]
  2. When I’m With You
  3. When Lenny Meets Lorca – [MP3]
  4. Skeltzer Spleltzer
  5. Mood 159
  6. Pain Bubbles
  7. Blue
  8. Condition Green – [MP3]
  9. Death Of A King
  10. Godless

 

***
Cover Image2001

US LPx2 Beta-Lactam Ring MT050

side a

  1. Lent – [MP3]
  2. When I’m With You
  3. When Lenny Meets Lorca – [MP3]
  4. Skeltzer Spleltzer

side b

  1. Mood 159
  2. Pain Bubbles
  3. Blue
  4. Condition Green – [MP3]

side c

  1. Death Of A King
  2. Godless

side d

  1. Premonition 25

Credits

  • Ryan Moore – bass, drums, percussion, sound processing
  • Martijn de Kleer – guitars, violin, drums and bass
  • Qa’Sepel – vox inhumana, keyboards
  • The Silverman – keyboards, filters, sound processing, voices from beyond
  • Niels van Hoornblower – saxophones, flute, bass clarinet, percussion
  • Frank Verschuuren – sound processing

Vinyl edition has a gatefold cover and separate lyric sheet. Also includes a white paper sheet with a pink dot on it.
The vinyl release features slightly different mixes of some tracks.


Press Release

Power. The unutterable lust for power. How would it be if there was no shame attached to this trait? A belief in yourself as puppet master, shaping lives, moulding a world together that fits you like a glove; ultimately the certainty that only you exist and everyone and everything around you is merely a pliable illusion. The universe can only tolerate so much madness, and as the lust grew, he faded. And nobody forgave or honoured him for his actions because they couldn’t remember his name or his face. Deeds, events slipped into history, into mythology, into stories to scare children with, into nursery rhymes of which nobody could decipher the meanings…. Into almost nothing. Almost. And him? Didn’t he simply get what he wanted? The last doubts cast aside, a confirmation that only he existed in an empty universe that he had to fill? To fill, but with what? Still the shapes haunted him because they came unbidden, and they slipped away before he could catch them and give them substance. His substance. And still the voices haunted him, because they were not HIS voices yet they were somehow familiar. However, familiarity could never fit in this One-dimension. And he tried to think of nothing, and he applied himself with patience. And he almost succeeded. Almost.


Reviews

Firmly in their psychedelic- goth period, A Perfect Mystery is one of the more conventional and enjoyable releases in Legendary Pink Dots’ extensive discography. The album settles into a pattern where songs begin with a slow, atmospheric start and then increase instrumentation, which turns up the musical tension and explodes in a trippy fury of mad, whirling, musical dervishes, with Edward Ka-Spel’s foreboding lyrics wavering over everything. It all comes together perfectly on “Pain Bubbles,” where the Silver Man’s swirling keyboards and Niels Van Hoorn’s sax dance around each other over a pulsating beat. A gentle exception to the pattern, and a standout track, is the gentle groover “Blue,” a spacey guitar-and-drums ballad that mutates into ambient dub that evokes drummer Ryan Moore’s side project, Twilight Circus Dub Sound System. “When I’m with You” shows the rockier side of the group, a slow groover that intensifies and peaks majestically with an outstanding sax solo. The only misstep is the apocalyptic Appalachian chant “Skeltzer Speltzer.” a psychedelic hoedown that sounds like Malcolm Mooney-era Can, but at one-quarter speed. Overall an excellent introduction to the band. Those not afraid of mildly challenging material should dive in enthusiastically. Note that the vinyl version of this album contains different mixes than the compact disc, and also includes an additional track. – James Mason, All Music Guide

***

I’ve seen the Legendary Pink Dots in concert twice and have heard live recordings, but this is the first studio album I’ve heard. Originally released by Soleilmoon in 2000, several of these songs sound familiar, which makes sense as this was the album they were surely supporting when I saw them perform in 2000. The Beta-Lactam release of the CD is a 2-LP set housed in a beautiful gatefold jacket, and includes an entire side (one lengthy track) not on the original CD. The Pink Dots web site discography also notes that the vinyl has different mixes of the tracks.

Of the standard Pink Dots styled songs, “Lent”, “Pain Bubbles”, and “Condition Green” are my favorites. I’m almost certain “Lent” is the song they opened the show with when I last saw them in 2000. I really like the combination of droning ethereal electronics, sax, Martijn de Kleer’s guitar, and Ka-Spel’s haunting voice. de Kleer has a guitar style that at times reminds me of Dave Gilmour. The song is slow paced but there’s a tremendous tension that builds throughout, the electronics and guitar giving a space rock edge to the music. “Pain Bubbles” is similar and culminates in an intense space jam and some more tasty guitar from de Kleer. “Condition Green” is a nice song with a floating psychedelic atmosphere. Acoustic guitar, wah’d electric guitar, flute and bubbly space synths make for a magic carpet ride backing to Ka-Spel’s vocals. “When Lenny Meets Lorca” is a 60’s pop-psych sounding tune with steady dancey percussion and razor sharp guitar attacks, phased pulsating drones, bubbling space synths, and a flute melody that gives an extra psychedelic kick to the music. A little different but worthy of mention is “Skeltzer Speltzer”, a whimsical song that sounds like an avant-garde Celtic pub tune. But the real earcandy for space rock fans is “Godless” and “Premonition 25”. “Godless” is a lengthy psychedelic voyage with poetic Daevid Allen styled delivery from Ka-Spel. It includes some of the freakier, and more overtly space rock, music heard on this set and is definitely one of the better headphone tracks. Love those pulsating beats, phased drones, raga styled acoustic music, and swirling electronics. “Premonition 25” is the side long bonus track and showcases the more experimental side of the Pink Dots. It’s a Revolution #9 styled freakout journey with lots of oddball voice and sound samples, loops, and space electronics that are both collage styled aggressive and floating ambient. This one’s for the dosed audience.

It wasn’t lost on me that the Legendary Pink Dots pretty well packed the house both times I saw them live. Probably the best crowds I’ve seen for a band that plays adventurous music that is often in the space rock realm. The band have a knack for good songwriting which may attract the larger audience, and I was impressed with the combination of solid songs and spacey, often experimental, music. I’ll have to check out more of their studio releases. – Jerry Kranitz, Aural Innovations

***

For those of you who have the opportunity to see the tour for this new album, take it, and experience the unique space rock jam sessions that focus on this new material. Their new direction is improvisation and all-out jamming, and the music on this disc is some of a very joyous and new nature to the Pink Dots. The lyrics are wonderful, of course, sticking to Edward’s excellent story-telling style, but most of them have a more rhyme-schemed, verse, chorus, verse style that is very out of the ordinary for him. Niels van Hoornblower’s winds are throughout the disc, as well as Ryan Moore’s distinct dub style and The Silverman’s wonderfully eerie and spacey keyboards and effects. Martijn de Kleer mostly plays guitar, it seems, but also adds in superb violins on such tracks as “Skeltzer Spletzer.” The CD really brings you back to the show, with a spellbinding and uplifting feeling – upbeat and more solemn tracks alike. As Edward said in a recent interview, a lot of the music on this disc “could never, in fact, be repeated.” – Daniel McKernan, Brainwashed

HTEZZSIM……………SING WHILE YOU MAY!


Lyrics

LentWe, the starving volunteers; the ones who go without. The shoeless, hair-shirts, bonded, veiled; seekers of the drought now stand before your floral gate to rend these rags and shout your name. In your name. We came to whine, remind you that it’s time for endless vigil. On stone cold floors, on ashes or on white hot nails. Slow motion tip-toe and vicious gales that flex then flail then punch from all directions. In your name. Our crosses rotting in the rain, we hang before you in your name.We bear the bitter mark of Cain.

When I’m with You

From here to there in minus time, a spirit casts a line to fish alternatives and Caesar lives. It’s 1939. It’s Fall. We eat pizzas by the pool…we watch the Christians sing then fall in quadro. 50 legal channels, this one sponsored by St.Paul. Are you playing me? (Where next ?) Year sub-zero here in Baghdad,s uper-heroes stalk the street. The bitter moon looks down and laughs while I lie smoking in the bath with you. Now spray these lips with superglue, I’m lying through my teeth – it’s ocean blue in Casablanca, but it’s burned out black beneath. Playing me… (where next?) It’s All Souls Night. I’m frightened because I’m standing here alone. I watched the last bus fly to Brighton. Now life’s empty but it’s home. And I skip lightly through the garbage, call you on your mobile phone. The message says you’ve re-located. “Leave a message…here’s the tone.” Playing me? (Where next?)

When Lenny meets Lorca

I practised in the mirror, dyed my hair black desert blonde. Got dead-drunk porcupine mascara. Learned your habits, sing your songs by heart. The gestures,a ll the subtleties… You’re not alone my far-off prince though only I know really what you go through. When Lenny meets Lorca, they’ll walk on the water. I know they want a piece of you but I just want to share. I’ll throw open all my doors for you, wear orchids in my hair. I’ve traced your number now and though the message says “Not there!” Hear me, my frustrated prince, as I declare “Come and meet your twin!” When Lenny meets Lorca, they’ll walk on the water.

Skeltzer Spleltzer

Two bees behind the curtain. We’re certain we’ll find our way outside. We’ll climb the window and when it seems we’ve never got so high, we’ll slide. Those depths we’ve never met before. I’m tired – I guess you feel the same. We’ll try it once again. But we’ll slide. Now take your coat and leave the room, ensuring you’ve locked us safely in. On no account should you assist us. We’re desperate. We slide…

Pain Bubbles

Watched the boulder on the mountain bounce onto her head. I felt I should have warned her, but the first rule’s “Nothing said…” So nothing’s done…she smashed into little pieces, and me? I simply fled… When she puts herself together, I will hover overhead, crying “Ahhh…” The bigger the catastrophe, the more I hang around to feed on victims lying under me. I make that special sound that makes you laugh yourself to pieces, gets you rolling on the ground, gets you screaming “Ahhhh…” As you slide into the first dimension I pencil in the lines. No matter how grand your intentions, your destiny is all mine. I’m not giving you an answer, I’m just leaving you the time to find out what it’s like to be here crying all the the time. Crying “Ahhh….”

Blue

Everything we feared was swept inside a little box pushed out of sight for many years while we would talk about tomorrow.Two pedestals, a crowded room, we’d both lay out our past but only touch a glass divide that grew a little wider every night. But your memory was hungry and I watched you court your shadows in reverse. And from my corner, I would curse but never say a word. And still I like to think that we shared. Still I like to think we truly cared. And sure we had our dreams, but never dared. Tell me, lover, what’s in like in there? In the Blue Room.

Condition Green

I’m waiting at your bedside. I’m waiting for a sign. I never sleep, “Bleep..bleep” means I’m contented. I’ll be fine…And I know it’s been a year now, and I know it could be five. Don’t care what doctors recommend I’ll keep you alive. (No matter what it takes, I’ll wait. I’ll keep you alive.) Took a liver from a preacher, had that crooked jaw re-shaped. That ol’ heart was shipped from Zanzibar. Those arteries have been scraped. When it’s over you’ll be happy – like being born a second time. Don’t care what the neighbours say, I’ll keep you alive (No matter what it takes, I’ll wait. I’ll keep you alive…) If you could only answer me, I know you’d give a nod, and keep that little white light blinking… No I am not playing God. It’s the Lord above who pulls the strings, He does not pull the plug. And I remain his humble servant, fingers double-crossed for luck. I’ll keep you alive. (No matter what it takes, I’ll wait. I’ll keep you alive.)

Death of a King

A man’s allowed to cry today…to put his feelings on display. No ridicule and no disgrace. We’ve lost a king, but not his face. And should I fall apart in public, it’s allowed. No…it’s demanded. Zoom in, see how small I am. I’m humble now but, I hope, big-hearted. Let me be confetti on my grave. And all the secrets kept within these walls are scattered on the wind. He’s human now. He’s clipped his wings. The king is dead. Long live the king! Black ribbons hang now from his portrait. Candles flicker as the day breaks. Still he mutters, still he shakes…we’ve lost a king, but not his face. Still we wait for wisdom at his grave.

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