Good review of Television. I also look forward to your response to my question I emailed. No rush
I also concur with the others that Marquee moon deserves a higher rating. Personally it's a clear E and in my top 40 album.
From my perspective, in my "Pre-Starostin" era of listening to music. I did listen to the Strokes and Franz Ferdinand and their brand of post punk and so I got used to the vocal stylising of those types of group and wasn't shock hearing his voice when listening to Television.
However after reading Starostin review of Television I gave Television a shot and I had two reactions. First reaction, I laughed out loud at how it sounded exactly like those bands and realised that a great large amount of indie rock bands had based their sound on this album. Just listen to songs like MArquee Moon and I couldn't help hear a bit of Strokes, Franz Ferdinand, Interpol etc in it.
Second thing was just shear amazement of the guitar playing. To me the guitar playing is just tremendous in this album. I'm a real sucker for guitarist who use their playing to harmonised the vocal and create a distinct melody that meshed well with the vocalist. I think Venus is the best example of that. In a way it's kind of bad for me discovering this record because I can't actually listen to Strokes without feeling this music is kind of obsolete as Television did the same style but better and with exceptional guitar playing.
If you are wondering about an analog to Verlaine's approach to guitar playing. The closest I can think of is Dave Davies approach in Arthur with songs like Yes Sir, No Sir and Brainwashed with the whole guitar melody. IMO Verlaine took the whole guitar melody to a new level (although I still think Arthur is a much better album though as it is superior in other areas).
In any case, I don't have the same issue with the whole categorisation. To me it sounds post punk so it is post punk. The fact that this album was released during punk means that it's just a post punk album released during punk's peak period. I see genre categorisation as a description to the style of music and not some sort time frame associated with that genre. In any case if that's not sufficient, perhaps proto-post punk?
« Back to index