Listening “No Thyself” it’s like a time capsule, a trip back to the late 70s, early 80s. And surprisingly, Magazine sounds fresh, this post-punk mixture with psychedelia still sounds authentically, have the right vibe and that particular glowing, deep groove. Once again, when everybody sweat to be more futuristic, more avant-garde and post-everything and post-whatever, the returning pioneers proves that some good ideas are more meaningful that the sophisticated sound, all the digital shit and eventually some fancy producer. I’m some freak nostalgic? Maybe, but I don’t really think so. I’m just sick of everybody sounds just the same. Sick of all those post, alternative and so-called core – actually fake plastics the industry lately delivered. Magazine are kind of dinosaur? Possibly, but while it seems we lost the direction, we might need them now more than ever.
Formed by Howard Devoto after leaving punk band Buzzcocks in early 1977 and their debut album, “Real Life”, is still widely considered as one of the greatest albums of all time. It was considered “the first post-punk album”, included on the list of “1,000 Albums To Hear Before You Die”, while Howard Devoto was nominated as “the first post-punk anti-star”. Deciding to create a more experimental and less punk band, Howard Devoto open a door to a new world of sounds which later influenced many musicians, most notably bands such as Radiohead and Morrissey (former of Smiths), while Magazine songs were covered by The Mission, Peter Murphy, Sleep Chamber, Ministry, My Friend The Chocolate Cake, Half Man Half Biscuit, No Fun at All, among many others.
In April 1977 Howard Devoto met guitarist John McGeoch, then an art student, at Manchester and formed the band. Later they then recruited Barry Adamson on bass, Bob Dickinson on keyboards and Martin Jackson (previously of The Freshies) on drums. Dickinson left in late 1977, and Iin early 1978, Magazine recorded and released as a four-piece band their first single “Shot by Both Sides” – one of their most famous song. Shortly after the single’s release, Dave Formula of St. Louis Union joined as keyboardist. Critics consider it was an early example of the goth influence in punk. The band, with Formula on keyboards, made its first major TV appearance on Top Of The Pops in February 1978, performing the single.
“Real Life”, their critically acclaimed debut album was released in April 1978 and made the UK Top 30. Jackson left Magazine in late July, and was replaced briefly by Paul Spencer, who performed with the band for gigs across Europe. Spencer quit partway through the tour, joining The Speedometors shortly afterwards, and he was replaced in October by John Doyle, who completed the Real Life promotional tour and remained in the band.
In 1979 Magazine’s second album, “Secondhand Daylight” was released, reaching the UK Top 40. That same year, McGeoch, Adamson and Formula joined electronic project Visage, recording and releasing the single “Tar”.
“The Correct Use of Soap”, Magazine’s third album, was released in 1980 and its made again the Top 30. Following its release McGeoch decided to leave the band, tired of Magazine’s low sales and their less guitar-oriented songs, joining Siouxsie and the Banshees. To replace him the band called Robin Simon, who previously was in Ultravox and Neo. Simon made some initial recordings and rehearsals for the “Magic Murder And The Weather” album, including co-writing the song “So Lucky”, but he left the band to record on the John Foxx solo album “The Garden.” Devoto called in his former college friend at Bolton, Ben Mandelson (former Amazorblades member) and this line-up completed the recording of “Magic, Murder And The Weather” in 1981, but Devoto decided to disband Magazine and start a solo career. After two albums with Luxuria, Devoto quit music to become a photo archivist until a collaboration with Buzzcocks’ Pete Shelley produced the Buzzkunst album in 2002.
Howard Devoto and Magazine reformed in July 2008 and the line-up includes Formula, Adamson and Doyle. In November 2008, the band announced Noko, Devoto’s bandmate in Luxuria, would be the guitarist in the reformation line-up, taking the place of John McGeoch, who died in 2004.
In November 2010 Barry Adamson left to concentrate on his film work and solo recordings, he was replaced by bass player Jon “Stan” White for the new recordings.
01 â€“ Do The Meaning
02 â€“ Other Thematic Material
03 â€“ The Worst Of Progressâ€¦.
04 â€“ Hello Mister Curtis (with apologies)
05 â€“ Physics
06 â€“ Happening In English
07 â€“ Holy Dotage
08 â€“ Of Course Howard (1979)
09 â€“ Final Analysis Waltz
10 â€“ The Burden Of A Song
11 â€“ Blisterpack Blues (Limited Edition Digipak Bonus Track)
“No Thyself” will be available worldwide on 24 October 2011 to coincide with the bandâ€™s November UK Tour. Hypnotic and groovy, retro, but fresh and looking into the future, Magazine’s return with an excellent album. Till you don’t listen it, you might do not realize how much you miss them.