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Thursday, 24 February 2005

Magazine - 2 albums

I have managed to get hold of two of the albums by Magazine, an English band of the late 70s and early 80s. I still have these albums on vinyl, but never take the trouble to listen to any of my vinyl collection.

The two albums - Real Life and The Correct Use of Soap - are every bit as wonderful as I remember them being. I love the dry drawl of Howard Devoto's voice. And the mix of guitar, bass, drums and synthesiser (Dave Formula - yes, very 80s synth, I know) make for a fantastic sound. The lyrics are incredibly sharp and bitter too. Devoto spent a short time in the Buzzcocks with Pete Shelley (he wrote their hit "Boredom") before leaving to form Magazine. I saw them live in Liverpool and thought they were brilliant.

I remember these two albums really well. I played them to death at the time. The two other studio albums - "Secondhand Daylight" and "Magic, Murder and the Weather" - I haven't heard as far as I can remember, so I'm going to search for those too. There is also a live album called "Play" which is supposed to be excellent too.

The main guitarist John McGeogh (who left the band to work with Souxie and the Banshees) died last spring. His guitar was a distinctive sound in their music. They were a band that worked through a fair few members though, so there were other guitarists.

There's a fan website which is worth a visit to find out more about them. It sounds like Howard left the music scene for a while, working as a photo librarian. He has been back in the music industry recently working with Pete Shelley in Buzzkunst and ShelleyDevoto.

With songs like 'The Light Pours out of me', 'Shot by both sides', and 'A Song from under the floorboards' Magazine are definitely a band in need of a revival.

"Maybe it's right to be nervous now..."

"Now that I'm out of touch with anger / Now I have nothing to live up to"

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