Monday, 30 December 2013


"marquee moon"
Year:    1977
Country:    US
City:    New York
Format:    CD, LP
Tracks:    8
Time:    40
Genre:    rock
Style:            New Wave

These reissues arrive just a few months too late to catch the red-hot apex of 70s New York revivalism, but that doesn't mean they're any less welcome: with all the attention Television have received lately, it's been strange to see their masterpiece, Marquee Moon, stuck in a bin with all the other old classics at the record store, in a barebones edition with a blue "Super Saver" sticker on the wrapper.

Television, along with the other 70s legends that inspired the recent reintroduction of guitars, punk and garage-rock to the mainstream, are continually rediscovered by new breeds of NYC hipsters looking to start their own bands. The group's place in history has been resacramented again and again, so by now the backstory's old hat-- you know, the one about them kicking Richard Hell out of the band before they cut their first single, playing gigs and publishing verse with Patti Smith, and talking the owner of the then-unknown CBGB's to host shows of other genres than just "country, bluegrass, and blues" (which also makes them largely to blame for all those people that wear the club's t-shirts).

You can read first-hand accounts and second-hand analyses of all these events, and one thing you'll uncover is the debate over how "punk" Television was. Sure, they joined the movement from the beginning, playing out as early as 1973, and they harnessed the energy you associate with punk, even as they crossed it with art-rock and the poetic urges of frontman Tom Verlaine (nee Miller, renamed after the French poet-- but not in a fey way). But they were also a rock band that roared through long, tense jams: When I first heard "Marquee Moon", it somehow felt like I'd already been exposed to it on a classic rock station wedged between Steve Miller and Skynyrd (*Review by Chris Dahlen ).
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