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RPWL - A New Dawn album review

German proggers RPWL’s new epic takes a massive multimedia turn

RPWL - A New Dawn album artwork

RPWL could never be accused of doing things by halves. Twenty years into their career, the German art rockers – formerly a Floyd tribute act and now noted for their highbrow conceptual pieces – present a whopper of a celebratory concert movie/album.

Filmed in their home town of Freising, Bavaria, this was no mere rock show. The one-off performance involved 50 actors and extras in a play and multimedia event. Naturally, it was presented in their native tongue, though an English edition sees the dialogue overdubbed by the entire cast and narrator. It’s presented on Blu-ray and DVD, an audio version spread across two CDs or three LPs. With subject matter that references both Friedrich Nietzsche’s Thus Spoke Zarathustra and the tale of a factional group pursued by political and religious leaders for peddling a homeopathic hyperawareness drug known as Veritas Forte, RPWL couldn’t do ‘simple’ if they tried. Nor should they, as plenty of others take the easy option. The ghost of Floyd is omnipresent throughout via a simmering mix of male lead and female backing voices, notably during A Clear Cut Line, which bears obvious similarity to The Great Gig In The Sky. This is one for sufferers of ADD to avoid at all costs.

Dave Ling was a co-founder of Classic Rock magazine. His words have appeared in a variety of music publications, including RAW, Kerrang!, Metal Hammer, Prog, Rock Candy, Fireworks and Sounds. Dave’s life was shaped in 1974 through the purchase of a copy of Sweet’s album ‘Sweet Fanny Adams’, along with early gig experiences from Status Quo, Rush, Iron Maiden, AC/DC, Yes and Queen. As a lifelong season ticket holder of Crystal Palace FC, he is completely incapable of uttering the word ‘Br***ton’.