June 22, 2005

The Magnetic Fields: 69 Love Songs

I've read a lot of positive things about this 1999 release, so when I found this 3 CD album at the library a couple of months back, there was no doubt that I had to borrow it.

69 songs is a lot, which made me a bit reluctant/skeptical in the beginning, because most artists have problems writing just 12 good songs for an album. So what was this guy (Stephin Merritt) thinking, when he believed that he could write 69 songs for just one album?

Though there obviously are weak moments on the album (anything else would be a real surprise), this idea/project/concept works out pretty well. Most of the songs have strong melodies and with several guest vocalists helping out you get an unexpected variety in the performance of the songs.

The songs run for a total of 2 hours and 52 minutes, which is exactly 2 minutes and 30 minutes per song. So maybe "69 Short Love Songs" would have been a more appropriate album title?

As you might have guessed I do not own a copy of this brilliant album (a ripped copy doesn't make me the owner), but this will surely change in the near future.

A couple of standout tracks:
Come Back from San Francisco
The Death of Ferdinand de Saussure
The Luckiest Guy on the Lower East Side

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