Release Date: Oct 24, 2011
Record label: Wire-Sound
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock
It was punk rock’s anger that led Buzzcocks founder and frontman Howard Devoto to question his purpose and exit the group after the band’s very necessary first release, Spiral Scratch EP. As if having predicted where first wave punk rock was going to be and how it was going to sound over the next couple years after ’77 left an impression, bands like Wire and Public Image Ltd. also having made similar creative leaps, Devoto tapped into the more theatrical and sophisticated side of his personality for Real Life, the debut album from his next band, Magazine.
The man who brought punk to Manchester, Howard Devoto once said that Magazine's albums were designed to be timeless, which may explain why his second group (after Buzzcocks) have successfully picked up the baton after 30 years. No Thyself could be the fourth album they should have made instead of 1981's Magic, Murder and the Weather, which badly missed departed John McGeoch. Here, guitarist Noko and bassist John "Stan" White (replacing Barry Adamson, who had film commitments) help recapture the sonic blueprint laid down on the first three classic albums: urgent post-punk on Holy Dotage and statuesque keyboards on Of Course Howard.
The titular pun, allusive and mocking, literate and “classic” in at least a double sense, typifies this pioneering post-punk band’s approach. Howard Devoto’s adenoidal delivery, his poetic or satirical lyrics, and his direction of a band bent on keyboard-guitar dominated aggravation make their fifth album (the first in nearly three decades since their heyday), as consistent as ever. Whether this wins them new fans as much as woos old ones remains uncertain.
The long-overdue fourth great Magazine album finally arrives. Garry Mulholland 2011 When Howard Trafford aka Howard Devoto helped invent punk rock, he immediately did the most punk thing possible. He quit his band the Buzzcocks as their classic debut EP Spiral Scratch was being released in early 1977.