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Television - Marquee Moon (Cover Artwork)

Television

Television: Marquee MoonMarquee Moon (1977)
Warner Music Group

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:


Contributed by: seekseek
(others by this writer | submit your own)

Television is good. No, I am not referring to the "idiot box" which the average American youth devotes some 25 hours a week to. I am talking about the proto-punk band that emerged from the almighty mid-seventies/early-eighties New York City scene. Television, along with many other bands of that s.
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Television is good. No, I am not referring to the "idiot box" which the average American youth devotes some 25 hours a week to. I am talking about the proto-punk band that emerged from the almighty mid-seventies/early-eighties New York City scene. Television, along with many other bands of that scene, had a profound impact on the history of punk rock, and the history of music itself. In fact to say Television & friends merely impacted the punk movement is a huge understatement, for it was proto-punk bands like these that, by definition of the term, spawned punk rock. Television was originally known as the Neon Boys in 1974 with Tom Verlaine on guitar, Richard Hell on bass, and Billy Ficca on drums. Months later second guitarist Richard Llyod joined the crew (Terry Ork told the band they could practice at his place if they let Lloyd, his friend, join) and renamed themselves Television. By 1975, Verlaine and Hell, who where high school friends, could no longer work together and Hell was replaced with Fred Smith. Hell later went on to play with ex-New York Doll guitarist Johnny Thunders in Johnny Thunders and The Heartbreakers, and then in his own band Richard Hell & The Voidoids). The album I am reviewing, their 1977 debut LP Marquee Moon, is by far their best work. Their 1978 follow up album Adventure, live album Blow Up, and 1992 self-titled reunion album were good albums, don't get me wrong, but they certainly didn't match the greantess of Marquee Moon.

This album starts out right with "See No Evil", one of the faster songs on the album. A great song. Here you first here Verlaine's whiney, sometimes unintelligible voice.

Next we have "Venus", a sappy little ditty (I've been saying "little ditty" a lot lately, please shoot me). "Venus" is one of Television's all-time "sweetest" songs. Even if you don't like such songs, you'll like this one. Trust me.

"Friction" is my favorite Television song. The lead riff is fucking cool as hell, the bass is great, and the singing and lyrics rock.

"Marquee Moon" is ten minutes and forty-two seconds of pure sonic bliss. The intertwined guitars throughout most the song, not to mention the many solos, remain some of my favorite guitar work ever. As with most Television's music (and lyrics for that matter), this song is eccentric and quite unpredictable. "I spoke to the man down at the tracks. And I asked him how he don't go mad. He said, 'Look here junior, don't you be so happy and for heaven's sake, don't you be so sad.'"

Next we have more intricate musicianship in the song "Elevation". "Elevation, don't go to my head." Yet another Television classic.

"Guiding Light" is a nice, mellow song. "I woke up and it's yesterday. Do I again face this night? Guiding light, guiding through these nights."

"Prove It" was a minor hit in the U.K. for Television, as was Marquee Moon. It is definitely one of their better songs, but I don't see why it was singled out over songs like "Friction" (though I read that "Friction" was a minor hit in the U.S.).

"Torn Curtain" rounds out this classic album. At nearly seven minutes, it is the second longest song on the album. Another softer song, but like all their "soft" songs, there is a unmistakable edge to it.

Well, that's it. If I seem less thorough with this album than I have with some of my other favorites of the past, it is because it is all rather indescribable. With the double-lead guitar work of Verlaine and Lloyd, combined with Verlaine's impressionistic poetry, Television was a truly original and influencial band.



Do you like reviews? How about comics and articles? Well, then you'd simply adore Mediaocre Industries. ADORE I SAY!

 

 
People who liked this also liked:
The Clash - London CallingMinor Threat - Complete DiscographyDescendents - Milo Goes To CollegeOperation Ivy - Operation IvyThe Clash - The ClashRefused - The Shape of Punk to ComeBad Brains - Bad BrainsRichard Hell and The Voidoids - Blank GenerationBad Religion - SufferThe Velvet Underground - The Velvet Underground and Nico

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
amateurchemist (August 3, 2012)

If this album is 4 and a half stars, then somebody please tell me what the fuck a 5 star album sounds like!

GodzGardener1 (March 10, 2009)

I love television!

danny_crizack_666 (November 2, 2006)

i got this on vinyl and i go to bed to this or the velvet underground album with nico and bob dylans blond on blond, yeah yeah yeah its ohh soo fine.

Anonymous (May 27, 2005)

I have the rerelease, it's pretty awesome. Demos, a nice booklet about the making of the album, Little Johnny Jewel(!) and an instrumental. Not to mention cleaned up sound quality.

Anonymous (December 25, 2003)

classic, monumental...
anyone know if the reissue of this that came out in '03 is any better or worse?

Anonymous (July 28, 2002)

Amen!!!!!

waste_elite (July 23, 2002)

eh, whatever. i like television, nofx, and bad religion.

waste_elite (July 23, 2002)

fuckin awesome. i'd never thought i'd see a television review on this site. good review seek.

seek (July 23, 2002)

Scott, if I wear a wig and some make-up, is that good enough?

seek (July 23, 2002)

Yay my review got posted. If you guys like Television, I'm sure you'll enjoy my New York Dolls - Self-titled, and Richard Hell & The Voidoids - Blank Generation reviews. I posted them the same time I posted this, but obviously this site gets plenty of reviews submitted, so Scott and Aubin have to space them out. If you want you can read them now right here at my site.

Anonymous (July 23, 2002)

cause the world we live in sucks. those kids don't know anything older than 2 years. okay maybe 3.

Anonymous (July 23, 2002)

Good review. Television was one of the best. I haven't played this record in a LONG time, guess I should give it a whirl soon. -SaYnE GuY

jheisel (July 23, 2002)

what kind of world do we live in where the most-viewed reviews are bad religion, sum 41, and nofx, rather than television?

maverick (July 23, 2002)

If seek was a girl, I'd want to knock him up.

-Scott

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