07 September 2006

(magazine is the most underrated band ever. perhaps i exaggerate--no, not there, here : when howard devoto left the buzzcocks, he went on to form magazine and, w/ them, post-punk. (john lydon "leaving" the pistols & forming pil is also acceptable, but "shot by both sides" was out seven months before "public image.") "give me everything" (listen), their third single, is my favorite magazine song; it amazes me that it's not on any of their "hits" compilations (buy). it's a bit like sly & the family stone meets eno-era roxy music, something for the the cognoscenti to dance to. put differently, it's a coupling of two of my favorite bands, conceptually & musically, a real dream fuck. & yes, there's something recognizably punk to it, the jabs of the guitars, the abrasion in the chorus, devoto shouting "now you give me everything!" devoto's lyrics, too, have influenced every songwriter who practices rock & roll & who wants to mean something. he's at times blunt, at times indirect, as if there's an ideal listener out there that the song is directed at, someone whose personal knowledge of & dealings w/ devoto fill in the gaps--and yet you can't shake the feeling that he's talking to you, and, well, what does he want? in other words--in devoto's words, "so bleak and easy" or "so oblique and so easy." and in the music, disco or art rock. then, both. at the same time.)

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well put. Songs like "A Song From Under the Floorboards," "Because You're Frightened," and "Sweetheart Contract" still sound brilliant. Howard Devoto's later work with Luxuria was also excellent, though not everyone would agree with me. (There was a radio station in Boston that showcased songs from different bands, and listeners would vote for which band would continue to get airplay. The Luxuria song was soundly beaten by, if I recall correctly, the wretched
"Jack Kerouac" by 10,000 Maniacs.)

Aaron Forever said...

ist's almost somebody's birthday.... :)

fred said...

shhhhh. if you keep that up, people might go to my wishlist & buy me things!

Randolph said...

devoted to devoto...i'd forgotten how much i loved visiting your blog, but i have found it again....