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Edward Ka-Spel

Laugh China Doll

Label: Beta-lactam Ring Records

Format: CD

Genre: Electronic

Out of stock

In 1984 when “Laugh China Doll” and “Dance, China Doll” first appeared, it was difficult enough to try and suss the Legendary Pink Dots. For the few, the proud, the brave who actually had some of the early cassettes, it was apparent that LPDs’ had some serious avant-garde habits. For those who only had the LPD records as cosmological references, the progressive accents left a bizarre and refreshing taste in the midst of the early post wave synth landscape. So what now of all this China Doll business? Dance and Laugh shone like antebellum LPDs’ at the edges, but the Ka-Spel core proved a legendary dot of another colour. Edward off the LPD clock of those days had a more stripped down, economical sound. His brand of electro-minimalism, however, had nothing to do with the cold-wave synthers swarming at the time. Edward's nihilism was of a much more personal nature; his lyrics like letters to ex-lovers. Even the buzzing, addictive hum of synths at their most repetitive came off more weird than cold. Ka-Spel's melodies could often be very sweet. Very tender. Sequenced analogues, electronic swells, sounds like broken down calliopes, and, yes, an a capella track; Edward created a uniquely intimate, deeply engaging environment full of sonic movement. Always some fading loop or chirping trill or voices in the pockets. Envelopes and parameters shifting mid-song felt like levitation had finally been patented. A thus was the ante of the universe upped in 1984. Laugh and Dance have finally been paired on CD, with additional tracks from “Perhaps We'll Only See A Thin Blue Line”. The music has aged very well. Presented in a mini album sleeve, this beautiful edition will improve the look of any home and the sound of any room.
Details
Cat. number: mt113
Year: 2005
Notes:
Tracks 1-10 originally released on LP by In Phaze Records. Tracks 11-13 from the "Dance, China Doll" maxi single. Track 14 from "Perhaps We'll Only See A Thin Blue Line" compilation album. Track 15 from the vinyl reissue of "Laugh China Doll". Laugh China Doll was the first solo album release of Edward Ka-Spel recorded over 2 weekends on borrowed equipment in 1984. Pat Bermingham mixed it and released it on his In-Phaze label. Sadly he decided to store the master tape in his leaky garden shed and within a year you could drink it - this tape was not for baking. It was in better condition than the original tape for Dance, China Doll, the first 12" maxi-single however. Happily The Legendary Pink Dots sound wizard Raymond Steeg located a good quality copy of the original vinyl records and worked on them - they are almost digital now. This CD is dedicated with love to Marylou who inspired so much of the material here…

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