Synesthesia (All Music Guide)

Link to original article at All Music Guide

If you usually picture the Legendary Pink Dots’ discography as a spectrum running from accessible song-based albums to demanding experimental records, then you would have to file Synesthesia toward that latter end of the line. Once described by Edward Ka-Spel as a companion to Chemical Playschool: Vols. 11, 12 & 13, Synesthesia is actually a lot less enticing or endearing than that three-CD box set of glorious hodgepodgeism. It also pales in comparison to All the King’s Horses and All the King’s Men, the two “song” albums released later that same year. Thus surrounded, Synesthesia feels like a footnote. However, it is not particularly weak, simply a bit inconsistent. Its main flaw is the imbalance between the reluctantly handed-out songs at the beginning and end of the album, and the half-hour excursion into ambient abstraction that is the “Premonition 26″/”Premonition 28” sequence. Quietly disquieting as they are, these two segued tracks are nothing new in LPD’s canon, and they are definitely too long. In matters of experimental music, “Flashback” is much more successful with its creaking sounds and ghostly, ectoplasmic aural reminiscences. Song-wise, “Shining Path” and “The More It Stays the Same” are decent efforts, though not particularly remarkable. Synesthesia is far from being an essential LPD title. Historically, it is noteworthy for being the first album featuring the quartet lineup of Ka-Spel, the Silverman, Niels van Hoorn, and Martijn de Kleer, with Raymond Steeg in the control room.

(The date of this review is unknown.)


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