Saw the Legendary Pink Dots last night. I'm a fan, but I can't say I know them all that well. Or maybe I do- I did after all recognize a few songs at the end of the set. I figured with so many albums out, and my not having bought any in the last 10 years or so, the chances of them playing anything I knew were close to nil. And perhaps my notion that knowing a band well means being familiar with the majority of their work is misguided. If I have a good knowledge of their styles, their sounds, their world, their context, then perhaps I don't need to know most of what they've done to know them.
And they have done quite a bit. Their merch table had at least 40 albums. Some of them double albums. At least two of them, triple albums. And, when I went to look for a song I heard on the radio, that album wasn't there. No Chemical Playschool 8/9... or 1-7 for that matter- which means at least nine hours of music they've done that wasn't among the 40+ they had for sale.
And ah, the music, you want to know. How was the show? To me, it seems like their albums generally have a lot of filler, but then they're usually one or two tracks that really get under my skin. The music at the show seemed superficial at first but it drew me in after a while.
The sax player at times blew into something that made me think of a metal digeridoo shrunk down to 16 inches, with a couple fingerholes on top and a bend at the end. He also played some flute. He also had a sax whose bell glowed when he tooted, and he walked into the audience, tooting & illuminating us- me- he tooted me when making his rounds. Made me very happy. Later he tootled on a flute, and at one point was playing a sax and a stright woodwind- English horn?- at the same time.
Their famous singer gave the impression of wearing a smoking jacket with a red towl in his hair- some odd dishevelled fashion. In addition to his Dutch-accented songs of bizarre battles and flawed utopias, he treated us to some scat singing and vocal frys.
Synth guy provided some nature sounds and great percussion loops. I always like the tabla. And they had a guitarist, Martijn.
Apologies for being so wordy, I'm trying out some speech recognition software.