The inclusion of a "Tower" song as the title of this instrumental shows how "Island of Jewels" is actually a sequel to "The Tower", with "Asylum" being a kind of retreat from the world these albums describe.
"Island of Jewels" goes even further, lyrically it is set 5 years on from "The Tower", when it is turned into Tower World, that's actually when the cataclysm comes. It was a reaction to a particular occurrence. When I was living in England, the Conservative government had been in for 4-5 years and there was a general election. For the first time in my life ever I voted, for Labour. And the Conservatives just got in again. I couldn't believe it. "The Tower" was written in anger, and that's why we say "You chose your grave. Now lie there"
- Why did you do ISLAND OF JEWELS as a sequel several albums later?
"Because it didn't go away. It got worse. "Island of Jewels is about a future war, where an individual with an almost unbearable thirst for power lies face down in the stinking pit of his achievements in the penultimate "triumphant" scene. To get to this "pinnacle" he turns the world into his own arena where everyone is surveyed, studied, followed, and snuffed out if they choose to question. Sounds a little familiar, doesn't it... I'll mention no names. The last scene sees the grass growing again...because it always does."
- I've heard that the titles of several early Pink Dots albums were taken from a Indian Tarot deck.
"Well, not intentionally. CURSE had a tarot card on the cover, THE TOWER is the name of a tarot card, and THE LOVERS is the name of a tarot card, but it was accidental up to that point. ASYLUM was recorded at a very, very troubled time for the band. We almost split up during ASYLUM. We'd been roughly treated by the only manager we'd had in our history, we were depressed and having breakdowns - there was a lot of bad shit going around. But still, we recorded ASYLUM, and you can hear this troubled feeling on the record. So at the end of it all, when we were listening back to it, the band really all came together again. It was a very special night the night we listened to ASYLUM. And just to finish the evening, we decided to see what the fate of this album would be and we looked to the tarot. And the card we pulled from the deck was Asylum, and that was obviously the title that had to be, because we were all looking to escape from somewhere. We were all looking for something to escape to. It's full of desperation, that record. ISLAND OF JEWELS (also a card in the tarot deck) was concious. It was a concious decision. And that's when it stopped (laughs). The minute that we made a concious decision to name an album after a tarot card, then it was time to stop."