Wednesday, February 13, 2013

My Tulpa

From the 100 Influential Albums List

Song: My Tulpa
Artist: Magazine
Album: Real Life

I wanted to blindly pick an album/band from the 100 Most Influential Albums list that I had absolutely never heard of... just for the fun of it.  That album/band ended up being Magazine's "Real Life."  I'm happy to say it's pretty amazing and I'm happy to have happened upon it.

Magazine are an English post-punk outfit that had their main output from 1977 to 1981.  (They re-formed in 2009 for a tour, and an album followed in 2011.)  Formed by Howard Devoto, an ex-Buzzcock with the objective to go in a more experimental direction vs. punk.  Hence the influential-ness.

"Real Life" can best be described as" Springsteen-influenced psychedelic post-punk."  I hear a lot of the dramatic bells and driving, euphoric melodies of The Boss, the airy-freak-outs of 60's guitar psychedelia, and the dirty/sludgy sound of straight up post-punk a-la Television and Gang of Four.  But it's also a wildly melodic record... I see why it's thought of as influential.

The most well-known of "Real LIfe's" track's is "Shot on Both Sides," which has been covered by Radiohead in concert, who also used it's ascending chord progression structure on The Bends "Just."  I personally love the start of the record, the one-two punch of "Definitive Gaze" and "My Tulipa," but it's a solid listen from start to finish.  Oh, and towards the end "The Light Pours Out of Me" is pretty epic.

Dated?  Well... I suppose.  But it's still pretty immediate and vivrant.  A recommended listen.   

They released four albums in the '77 to '81 span which I'll have to take a listen to.  As an experimental band, they apparently delved into synthesizers pretty early on as well.

The members of Magazine would end up in a variety of noteworthy bands, from Visage to Ludus, the Birthday Party to The Mekons.  They are currently still together after the 2011 reunion record.


My Tulpa (live)
Shot on Both Sides
The Light Pours Out of Me

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