From the Vault...


The Dream Academy
"The Dream Academy"

© Warner Bros. Records

Year of Release: 1985

track listing
  • Life In A Northern Town
  • The Edge Of Forever
  • (Johnny) New Light
  • In Places On The Run
  • This World
  • Bound To Be
  • Moving On
  • The Love Parade
  • The Party
  • One Dream

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    The Dream Academy
    "The Dream Academy"

    We travel back to the 1980s this week, specifically 1985, where Pink Floyd member David Gilmour and Dream Academy member (lead vocalist/guitarist) Nick Laird-Clowes produced the self-titled The Dream Academy, an England band. The Dream Academy is best known for one hit, "Life In A Northern Town," which was featured on their debut album. They did release two more albums afterward, but did not acclaim the popularity as "Life In A Northern Town."

    Throughout this album, it definitely has a David Gilmour w/ Pink Floyd atmosphere, and definitely fitting the musical style of the 1980s music. The Edge Of Forever" relates more to another 1980s act, Tears For Fears. "(Johnny) New Light" has a David Gilmour vocal style, but what is interesting is the style of music, that is of another popular 1980s act, Gloria Estefan & The Miami Sound Machine, most notably their hit, "Conga." "In Places On The Run" has the Gilmour w/Pink Floyd, and has a moody effect, as in some of the music of Pink Floyd.

    "This World" has a definite '80s sound, but kinda boring though, yet you can't help to get the baton out and twirl to the music. Somehow Nick Laird-Clowes voice just doesn't seem to fit on the next two songs: "Bound To Be" just sounds like a bad Duran Duran song, and Laird-Clowes high notes on "Moving On" -- which makes you WANT to move on to the next song... The good news is the music sounds good with its 1980s pop ("Bound To Be") and jazz ("Moving On")

    The opening beats of "The Love Parade" has a great solo Sting/jazz atmosphere.. Again the good news is the music sounds great, but Laird-Clowes' vocals just doesn't cut it. (Where's Sting when you need him on this particular song?) "The Party" is anything but.. There is a small Gilmour influence at its beginning, but as the vocals continue, it's another bad song to listen to. Yet on a high note, the last track "One Dream" vocal style is a bit better.

    The beginning tracks of the self-titled Dream Academy started out good, as being compared more to the solo works of David Gilmour and his famous band Pink Floyd (especially after Roger Waters left). The only problem is that the music is very compared to other '80s acts as Tears For Fears, Thompson Twins, Duran Duran, but Nick Laird-Clowes vocals just didn't sound right with the latest pop/dance 1980s style. "Life In A Northern Town" and a few songs after that matched more of Gilmour's style, and fitted Laird-Clowes' voice with the rest of the music, but afterwards, the music was definitely good to listen to, but the vocals just didn't match.

    The Dream Academy released two more albums after their debut, but didn't accomplish any major hits or continued popularity. Not sure if Gilmour continued on with this band, but if they stayed with Gilmour/Pink Floyd sound, maybe those two albums were better, or even worse, if they continued with the common sound of the late 1980s, then they would not be worth purchasing, if the songs sounded like those on their debut.

    If you enjoy "Life In A Northern Town," it would best just to get that song alone on a 1980s compilation, and although David Gilmour co-produced this album, fans just may want to stick with Gilmour's most popular band that made him famous -- Pink Floyd. Gilmour's most popular solo album was About Face; his solo albums before and afterwards (like The Dream Academy), did not get as much praise.

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    Previous Review: #1052
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