Click here to expand and collapse the player

The Tear Garden

Rate It! Avg: 4.5 (12 ratings)


Biography All Music GuideWikipedia

Group Members: Edward Ka-Spel, cEvin Key, Ka-Spel

All Music Guide:

While sustaining a stance in the Canadian industrial trio Skinny Puppy, cEvin Key also maintained several side projects such as Tear Garden and Hilt. Not as chaotic as Skinny Puppy, Key's ambient side work began in the mid-'80s when he and Legendary Pink Dots' Edward Ka-Spel teamed up to form Tear Garden. Tired Eyes Slowly Burning (1987) marked the band's debut and sharply defined Key's talented programming skills to move him out from behind the blazing showcase of Skinny Puppy frontman Nivek Ogre. Key's keen ear quickly called out detail while searching for a lush composition versus the sonic disintegration of his other band, and this is what made Tear Garden enjoyably different. The Last Man to Fly, which included the critically acclaimed single "Romulus & Venus," was issued in 1992 and the Sheila Liked the Rodeo EP followed a year later. While completing Skinny Puppy's The Process, things were suddenly interrupted by the 1995 overdose death of keyboardist Dwayne Goettel. A bitter battle over the release of The Process prolonged into 1996, giving Key final creative control over his music due to Skinny Puppy's tragic demise. Not distraught by the horrible events brought on by the year before, Key plugged 1996's To Be an Angel Blind, the Crippled Soul Divide and 1997's Paradigm Shift, while keeping a low profile, and Tear Garden solidly became his chief project. Two more albums surfaced in 2000, the extensive compilation featuring Skinny Puppy, Legendary Pink Dots, and Tear Garden material entitled Wild Planet: Subconsious Communications, and the new Tear Garden LP Crystal Mass.


"Tear garden" redirects here. For the album, see Teargarden by Kaleidyscope.

The Tear Garden is a psychedelic/experimental/electronic band, formed by Edward Ka-Spel of The Legendary Pink Dots and cEvin Key of Skinny Puppy in 1985 after Key served as a sound engineer on tour in Canada for Ka-Spel. The Tear Garden was released that same year, with Dave Ogilvie producing.

The group reconvened in 1987 to release Tired Eyes Slowly Burning with contributions from the other members of Skinny Puppy to a limited degree of success. Members of the Legendary Pink Dots would henceforth contribute to Tear Garden and in 1992 they released the full-length album The Last Man to Fly. Another EP, Sheila Liked the Rodeo, much of which was live studio improvisation was accompanied by a video (directed by William Morrison) of the title track in 1993.

With the collapse of Skinny Puppy in 1995 and cEvin's primary commitment over, he and The Tear Garden released To Be an Angel Blind, the Crippled Soul Divide in 1996, followed by Crystal Mass in 2000. Crystal Mass marked a departure for the group, with more focus seemingly directed toward sound and production than the traditional staple, the lyrics. In 2002 a limited edition compilation of previously unreleased songs, Eye Spy with My Little Eye came out on Key's Subconscious Communications label. A best of, For Those Who Would Walk with the Gods is also available.

The Tear Garden have never toured, a detail that has limited their commercial potential. The only live performance of Tear Garden material by members of both Skinny Puppy and the Legendary Pink Dots was on April 14, 1988 in Leiden, Holland and May 1, 1988 at Foyer St. Arbogast in Strasbourg France, during Skinny Puppy's Head Trauma tour, for which Edward Ka-Spel was the opening solo act. At the end of Ka-Spel's set cEvin Key joined him on guitar and keyboards for a performance of the song "The Centre Bullet". The Legendary Pink Dots have performed Isis Veiled as an almost necessary encore at every show during their last few tours.

As of March 2008, after having successfully collaborated in 2007 on The Secret Experiment, cEvin Key has made mention that Edward Ka-Spel is due to show up in Los Angeles sometime soon and that new material could possibly arise from any presumed meeting of the pair.