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The Dream Academy

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iTunes Review

Best known for the 1985 single “Life in a Northern Town” (a tribute to Nick Drake, then mostly unknown), The Dream Academy recorded a magical self-titled album that remains among the finest of the '80s. Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour assisted band leader Nick Laird-Clowes with the production, which expanded the sound of the British art-school trio beyond all imagination, featuring orchestrations, choir-like backing vocals, and modern synths to create ‘80s-styled psychedelic pop music, much in the vein of Prefab Sprout. The album’s second single, “The Love Parade,” was less of a hit, but creatively speaking, songs such as “The Edge of Forever,” “(Johnny) New Light," and the somber, gorgeous “In Places on the Run” were complex new music, hinged on the advanced keyboard programming of Gilbert Gabriel and heartbreaking vocals from Laird-Clowes. Multi-instrumentalist Kate St. John would go on to work with Van Morrison. In the 2010s, countless young bands are emulating elements of The Dream Academy's style, trying to capture the stirring atmospheres of “This World” and “One Dream.”

Customer Reviews

The Dream Academy

One of my all time favorite albums. Strong melodies which easily take you back to the time when you first heard these songs.

An old favorite, fondly remembered

When I got this (on cassette!) back when it was originally released I listened to it over and over. It was so different from what I usually listened to (i.e. Husker Du, etc) yet I still loved it. Eventually the tape broke and I never replaced it. Until now. I am knocking one star off because nostalgia inevitably has grown the album's reputation in my mind. But it is perfect to chill out to. Where are the follow-up albums iTunes? (Rememberance Days ***/5, A Different Kind of Weather ****/5)

Good Work... making this album available to Itunes, as it's a phenomenal debut from
this group. Two pieces of their work appear in Ferris Beuller's Day Off: "Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want" (the museum scene, instrumental music), and "The Edge Of Forever", just before Ferris races home;
I keep looking for the group's follow-up albums here, which are just as unique as this first album (Hint, iTunes)....


Formed: 1983 in London, England

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '80s, '90s

The appropriately named Dream Academy, an English folk-rock trio who hit it big in the early 1980s with the bucolic, Baroque pop single "Life in a Northern Town," formed in London in 1983 around the considerable talents of vocalist/guitarist Nick Laird-Clowes, multi-instrumentalist (primarily oboe) Kate St. John, and keyboardist Gilbert Gabriel. Having come from similar musical backgrounds (Clowes and Gabriel had worked together in the '70s while St. John had performed and recorded alongside Nicky...
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The Dream Academy, The Dream Academy
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Customer Ratings


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