Thursday, October 25, 2007

408. Magazine - Real Life (1978)

Track Listing

1. Definitive Gaze
2. My Tulpa
3. Shot By Both Sides
4. Recoil
5. Burst
6. Motorcade
7. The Great Beautician In The Sky
8. The Light Pours Out Of Me
9. Parade


This album is together with the one we just had yesterday, Public Image, and Talking Head's 77 considered one of the first proper post-punk albums. If you are wondering what post punk is, it isn't just what came after punk, it is punk played and composed by people who are truly talented. Yeah, raw is good and all but after a while songs about sniffing glue based on one chord start to get old.

This is possibly the reason why punk was really a phenomenon of the year 1977. It didn't last much more than that, but it did leave its imprint. Magazine is coming out of a seminal punk band from right here in Manchester, the Buzzcocks, we will have more on them later. Devoto, ex-member of the Buzzcocks and Barry Adamson future member of Visage and Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds originating in idyllic Moss Side, made Magazine and this album.

This album is a truly impressive merger of what you might improperly call art-school rock with punk, hey it even has influences of Kraftwerk, immediately apparent in the first track. Then it goes from strength to strength, reaching it's apex in Great Beautician in the Sky, which reminds me profoundly of Goldfrapp in the Felt Mountain era. There are no duds here, the whole thing is a masterpiece and it is surprisingly accessible, the lyrics aren't pretentious, the music is interesting there is nothing wrong with this. It might take you a couple of listen throughs to appreciate it fully but you will still have fun with those. Top-drawer!

Track Highlights

1. The Great Beautician in the Sky
2. My Tulpa
3. Motorcade
4. Shot By Both Sides

Final Grade

10/10 Manchester Represent!


From Wikipedia:

Magazine's music continues to be an influence in modern music today. While having roots in the punk and new-wave movements, Magazine combined elements of avant-garde and pop. Radiohead in particular draws on the lyrical style of the group, and have performed "Shot By Both Sides" in concert. What's more, Radiohead's 1995 single "Just", with its ascending guitar hook, bears a passing resemblance to "Shot By Both Sides".

The Great Beautician in the Sky:

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