Sunday 4. 6.
Amanda Palmer & Edward Ka-Spel have announced the release of their eagerly anticipated new album. I CAN SPIN A RAINBOW will be available on CD, LP, and digital download on Friday, May 5th.
I CAN SPIN A RAINBOW marks the first full-length collaboration between Palmer and Ka-Spel, founding member of visionary Anglo-Dutch psychedelicists The Legendary Pink Dots and one of her greatest artistic heroes.
Palmer and Ka-Spel will celebrate I CAN SPIN A RAINBOW with a limited and intimate international tour. U.S. dates begin May 17th at The Middle East in Boston, MA; European dates get underway May 31st in Warsaw, followed by stops in Munich, Prague, Hamburg, Antwerp, Amsterdam, Paris, and London. The tour – which will see Palmer and Ka-Spel joined on stage as they are on the album by violinist/longtime Legendary Pink Dots contributor Patrick Q. Wright – also includes the legendary Wave & Gotik Treffen Festival in Leipzig (June 2nd). For complete details and ticket information, please visit amandapalmer.net/shows.
AMANDA PALMER & EDWARD KA-SPEL TOUR 2017
MAY 17 – Boston, MA – Middle East 20 – New York, NY – Bowery Ballroom 21 – Brooklyn, NY – Rough Trade NYC 23 – San Francisco, CA – DNA Lounge 24 – Los Angeles, CA – Troubadour 31 – Warsaw, PO – Proxima
JUNE 1 – Munich, DE – Muffathalle 2 – Leipzig, DE – Wave & Gotik Treffen 4 – Prague, CZ – Palác Akropolis 5 – Hamburg, DE – Fabrik 9 – Antwerp, BE – Trix Club 10 – Amsterdam, NL – Melkweg 11 – Paris, FR – Cigale 13 – London, UK – Heaven 16 – Vienna, AT – Porgy & Bess
I CAN SPIN A RAINBOW is the fulfillment of a lifelong dream for Palmer, an avowed fan of Ka-Spel and the Legendary Pink Dots since discovering their psycho-theatrical, multi-textural work in her teens. As noted in her best-selling 2014 memoir, The Art of Asking, the LPD have long been an inspiration to Palmer, their deeply connected relationship with fans as important to her life and work as their fearless autonomy and impossible-to-pigeonhole musical approach.
The two musicians first met in 1992 when Palmer, then 16, attended a Legendary Pink Dots show in her hometown of Boston. In 1995, having found that the Pink Dots were looking for lodging with fans to save money on the road, Palmer hosted five members of the band and crew at her childhood home. Ten years later, Palmer’s internationally acclaimed punk cabaret duo, The Dresden Dolls, had achieved enough success that they were able to invite the Dots to support them on a German tour, and it was then that Palmer and Ka-Spel vowed to carve out time to collaborate on an original recording. A decade passed and in July 2015 a very pregnant Palmer flew to London to start the long-discussed project but was informed on the first day of recording that her dear friend Anthony was losing his battle with cancer and had been given less than a week to live. Heartbroken, she assured Ka-Spel she would be back within the year. Indeed Palmer made good on her promise, returning in the spring of 2016 with her eight-month-old son, Anthony, in tow.
Palmer and Ka-Spel’s search for a London recording studio was interrupted by an incredibly generous offer from Palmer’s friend Imogen Heap, who suggested they make use of her Essex home recording studio, The Hideaway, conveniently located near Ka-Spel’s own home in Hornchurch. With Palmer traveling between London, Hornchurch, and Heap’s home studio, the pair spent just under a month composing and cutting an album entirely from scratch.
Engineered and mixed by Ka-Spel on his own laptop using Ableton, I CAN SPIN A RAINBOW is a truly collaborative effort, “a spiritual experience,” says Palmer, in which both artists’ stories, song fragments, poems, and lyrics became wholly meshed with loops, melancholy piano playing, melodic beds, and strange rhythms. The results range from the enchantingly minimal “The Clock at the Back of the Cage” and the album-opening “Pulp Fiction,” mysterious and strange with a luxurious theatricality that conjures both of its creators’ prior oeuvres while also opening a curtain into a heretofore unheard shared sonic world. Sensing the need for strings, the pair enlisted frequent LPD collaborator Patrick Q Wright, who contributed violin tracks from his studio in Italy. Alexis Michallek, Heap’s longtime studio assistant, contributes singing saw to “Beyond The Beach.”
“We merged our songwriting heads and poetic worlds to make a new universe,” Palmer says. “We would sit in Imogen’s house drinking cups of tea, bemoaning the state of the upcoming election, binge drinking in the UK, the refugee crisis, our internet addictions, frightening news we had read, our relationships… and then we’d compost all of the ingredients of our fears and conversations into song form. The Rainbow metaphor – which is also a nod to the ‘spinning beach ball of death’ on a Mac – was a wide-open image that kept popping up as a recurring theme on the record. It’s both dark and light at the same time. To me, the songs are simultaneously frightening and comforting, like a thunderstorm heard from a living room.”
“Making this record with Amanda felt a little like discovering a twin you didn’t know you had,” says Ka-Spel, “until a mysterious email lands in your inbox at a particularly auspicious moment. Some things are just meant to be…”
I CAN SPIN A RAINBOW features stunning cover art by Palmer’s close friend in London, British/Canadian artist Judith Clute, painted as she listened to finished tracks for inspiration.
AMANDA PALMER & EDWARD KA-SPEL I CAN SPIN A RAINBOW Release Date: Friday, May 5th
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ABOUT AMANDA PALMER Amanda Palmer is a singer, songwriter, playwright, pianist, filmmaker, and blogger who simultaneously embraces and explodes traditional frameworks of music, theatre, and art. She first came to prominence as one half of the Boston-based punk cabaret duo The Dresden Dolls, earning global applause for their wide-ranging theatricality and inventive songcraft. Her solo career has proven equally brave and boundless, including such groundbreaking works as the fan-funded THEATRE IS EVIL, which made a top 10 debut on the SoundScan/Billboard 200 upon its 2012 release and remains the top-funded music project on Kickstarter. In 2013 she presented “The Art of Asking” at the annual TED conference, which has since been viewed over 10 million times worldwide. The following year saw Palmer expand her philosophy into the New York Times best seller, The Art of Asking: How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Let People Help.
In 2015, Palmer joined forces with Patreon.com to further develop her revolutionary model of fan support and artistic community, and where 8,500 people help support Palmer’s seemingly infinite creative output. The growing list of “Patreon Things” – Palmer releases an average of one a month – now includes songs, original films, performance projects and such albums as her current collaboration with Ka-Spel.
Fans are invited to support Amanda Palmer’s art at patreon.com/amandapalmer.
ABOUT THE LEGENDARY PINK DOTS The Legendary Pink Dots formed in London in 1980, their idiosyncratic strain of experimental psychedelia at once astonishing even in that incredible year of musical invention and reinvention. Co-founded by singer-songwriter-keyboardist Edward Ka-Spel and electronic genius Phil “The Silverman” Knight, the band and its ever-changing lineup released its very first music on just 10 self-made cassettes, instantly establishing both a defiantly DIY approach and a wide-ranging musical aesthetic that remains indefinable and distinctly their own.
With Ka-Spel’s evocative songwriting, rich in black humor, poetry, and theatrical flair, as its only true constant, the Legendary Pink Dots’ voluminous palette truly encompasses a boundless array of genres, from psychedelia and prog rock to post punk and pop, ambient soundscape to industrial symphony, pastoral folk to extreme noise. Ka-Spel has proven one of the most ingenious and prolific artists of his or any other generation, his personal discography including among its vast ranks over 60 solo albums and at least 40 LPD releases (much of it available at the official Legendary Pink Dots Bandcamp). Palmer recently introduced her fans to the infinite Legendary Pink Dots back catalog by curating a Spotify playlist of her personal favorite LPD and solo Ka-Spel songs.
For more, please visit legendarypinkdots.org and legendarypinkdots1.bandcamp.com.